When exactly is one able to appropriately deem him or herself an artist? Is it the point at which one becomes acquainted with the channel through which one is able to steer society in order that his or her world may be visually interpreted? Is this art of which I make mention not an endeavor to scratch the surface of proclamation by means of circumnavigating language? I'd like to think that an artist resides in every breathing thing-some, more humble. Others, more proud, more productive, less collective, or less aware. In my opinion, art is about gifting those with whom we come in contact a pair of spectacles through which our world can be witnessed to-whether one portrays something cynical, optimistic, or pure is entirely up to the artist. Personality, taste, values, and beliefs all make an irrevocable mark on one's expression. This is the difference that stands between you and I. It is not always a matter of mere talent. My art is my culture, and I do not wish to refrain from making my culture vulnerable.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
I have been listening to nothing but hymns as of late. Perhaps my spirituality has grown a little too contemporary for my preferences. There is something so romantic about singing to the Good Lord with a somewhat hushed voice and subtle piano. I recently purchased a piano on craigslist. I used to play and sing hymns with my German piano in Texas when I found myself home alone, and this is something that I dearly miss. This is a hobby I will have no problem resurrecting, seeing as how I spend about 99% of my time at home...alone. You see, I sometimes feel sorry for myself because of this, but I'm afraid I've grown quite used to spending the majority of my time how I want to spend it-whether it be reading, walking, sipping coffee, or listening to the same song on repeat for an hour and a half. But living without a sense of community isn't living at all.
I am going to be painfully honest with you. I have been licking my wounds for the past two months or so. I sometimes feel that out of all the tears I've cried, a very miniscule amount have been recovered. My plans are always changing. My soul is continuously aching for my ruminations to evolve into a reality. Out of all the things that I hold dear in this life, there is the One I must esteem more highly. Yes, I've longed for what's "forbidden" from me, and I've perhaps little experience with a love that's true, but this is one thing I've found: there is always room. I'm not exactly sure I agree with the statement that "time is on our side," but I've always struggled with the concept of time anyways-of time redeemed, of time wasted, of time fleeting. But room. Room for growth. Room for healing. Room for community. Room for Christ. There is always something in one's life that he can afford to throw overboard in order to create space.
Eloquence is something I've always considered important. This is not to say that I will frown upon one's colloquial vocabulary, but I do think there is something very precious about the gift of language; however, I fancy the idea that I don't have to speak in order to pray. I can groan and weep and the Holy Ghost will stand in my defense. This i know to be true. I also think reading books is important. I must confess, I have a bit of a problem with people who, "don't read books." I consider books to be an avenue through which one can interpret fugitive conceptions. I respect those who follow up on current events. I respect those who are disciplined enough to listen. I respect those who are brave enough to weep. I respect those who are humble enough to submit themselves to the authority of suspension. I respect those who find comfort in silence.
I was once voicing these things to a dear friend of mine when she dumbfounded me with wisdom. "It's great that all these things are important to you, but what's the most important thing to you? You can't loose sight of that."
Can Christ's providence validate transcendence? Of course it can. But I will continue to learn this abiding lesson 'til the day I die. I'm a stupid mortal with selfish intentions and cravings that I fail to bridle.
Sometimes I just want to shake the doubt right out of people; to take hold of them by the shoulders and scream, "Accept the Lord!" But I am soon distressed at my own need for this.
And thank God salvation doesn't come about like that. I'd be damned.
"I need thee every hour, most gracious Lord;no tender voice like thinecan peace afford."
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
"Doubt is useful for a while. We must all pass through the Garden of Gethsemane. If Christ played with doubt, so must we. If Christ spent an anguished night in prayer, if He burst out from the Cross, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" then surely we are also permitted to doubt. But we must move on. To choose doubt as a philosophy of life is akin to choosing immobility as a means of transportation." -Yann Martel, Life of Pi