Mysteries versus Secrets

My practice is focussed on the mysteries of God far more than the secrets of God. What’s the difference? A secret is something knowable, but known to only a few insiders. By way of contrast, a mystery is something that’s simply unknowable. In practice it is like this. Knowing secrets only inflates my ego. Knowing … Continue reading Mysteries versus Secrets

War is not a solution for terrorism

Howard Zinn once observed, "If a bomb is deliberately dropped on a house or a vehicle on the grounds that a "suspected terrorist" is inside . . . , the resulting deaths of women and children may not be intentional. But neither are they accidental. The proper description is "inevitable." So if an action will … Continue reading War is not a solution for terrorism

The visionary art of the Rothschild Canticles

The Rothschild Canticles is one of the most unusual illuminated manuscripts to have survived from the Middle Ages. The text was made around 1300 to serve as an aid to mystical devotions in which images played as central a role as the written word. Visionary depictions of the Trinity, the Song of Songs, the Virgin … Continue reading The visionary art of the Rothschild Canticles

Visions of a Meditating Jesus

Meditation is not as foreign to Christianity as many think. Meditation is mentioned frequently in the book of Psalms for instance, though notably the focus of the psalmists is much more on the who than the how of it, as is typical of Jewish and Christian practice. What follows is a sizeable collection of images … Continue reading Visions of a Meditating Jesus

Thoughts which words can’t express

From the Sayings of the Desert Fathers: One day Abba Arsenius consulted an old Egyptian monk about his own thoughts. Someone noticed this and said to him, ‘Abba Arsenius, how is it that you with such a good Latin and Greek education ask this peasant about your thoughts?’ He replied, ‘I have indeed been taught … Continue reading Thoughts which words can’t express

Christian Art: The Fruit of the Spirit

Jesus once warned, “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognise them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good … Continue reading Christian Art: The Fruit of the Spirit

Indian Jewish Art

This curious painting by Indian Jewish artist Siona Benjamin is called Tikkun Olam. In Jewish teachings, Tikkun Olam is any activity that improves the world, bringing it closer to the harmonious state for which it was created. The pale blue female figure, balancing on a lotus flower, is a portrait of the artist herself. With … Continue reading Indian Jewish Art

Kurt Vonnegut on Christless Christianity

Kurt Vonnegut, author of Slaughterhouse-Five, once observed, "For some reason, the most vocal Christians among us never mention the Beatitudes. But, often with tears in their eyes, they demand that the Ten Commandments be posted in public buildings. And of course that's Moses, not Jesus. I haven't heard one of them demand that the Sermon on … Continue reading Kurt Vonnegut on Christless Christianity