In his book Jesus and the Nonviolent Revolution, André Trocmé gives an illustration that relates the binocular vision principle to man’s view of reality in an ultimate sense.
Humans’ two eyes enable them to perceive objects more truly, in three dimensions. This is because each eye views the target object at a slightly different angle, and then the brain superimposes those two images to create a single image with depth; if you use only one eye, objects appear flat. This superimposition function (called stereopsis) is not fully developed in infants, who therefore lack depth perception.
Trocmé says that when we take stock of the world, when we develop a worldview, we do so with two eyes: one that sees the world as it is, and the other that sees it as it should be. While we benefit from these two different viewing angles, most of us lack the stereoscopic function that combines view #1 and view #2 into one unified image. And so the present reality seems, to us, flat. Future reality—our idea of what should be—is likewise flat. We can’t see how these two realities overlap.
Jesus, however, saw complete and perfect overlap and acted accordingly: he ushered into the here and now the eschatological state foreseen by the Jewish prophets, which he understood not just as the goal of history but as a blueprint for everyday living. Continue reading
These four Jesus T-shirts are no longer available in the marketplace, as far as I can tell. I found them on the blog Defending Contending.
The Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance (FWMA), a group of art institutions in Connecticut and New York, is running an exhibition series this summer and fall on the Seven Deadly Sins. Each of the member institutions is presenting one of the sins. According to the Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, “The seven exhibitions will spark discourse on the nature of sin, penitence and, conversely, virtue and goodness. The featured artists will prompt visitors to consider what it means to be a human capable of sin and to live in a global community where sin is prevalent.”
Below is the list of exhibitions, sorted by opening date.
Lust | Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art | April 19–July 26, 2015
The HVCCA is using its “lust” assignment to explore contemporary sexual relations. A true-to-the-theme exhibition would comment on the potentially harmful effects of lust rather than use the topic as a pretext for images that merely titillate, so I’m giving the HVCCA the benefit of a doubt, even though the lineup—which includes the erotic fetish art of Gilles Berquet and Betty Tomkins’s photorealistic paintings of hetero- and homosexual sex acts in extreme close-up—makes me skeptical. I don’t think I’ll be attending this one, though I am curious to see how the topic is presented.
Adrien Broom, Envy and Temptation, 2015. Digital print.
Envy | Hudson River Museum | June 6–September 27, 2015
This one-woman show features the beautifully bizarre photographs of Adrien Broom. Life-size scenes from fairy tales—some familiar, some not so familiar—show us what envy looks like and what it can drive us to. The Evil Queen from Snow White is given special prominence. Continue reading
Over at God’s Politics, Elise Scott writes how we should bear our wounds openly and invite others to touch them. Our African American brothers and sisters have done this, are doing this. May we have the courage to reach out and put our fingers where their hurt is, to enter into their suffering, to affirm its reality, and to believe that another way forward is possible.
Right panel of an ivory diptych depicting the Incredulity of St. Thomas, made in Trier at the end of 10th century. Bode Museum, Berlin. Photo: Andreas Praefcke.
Arcabas (French, 1926-), Pentecost, 2005.
We trust in God the Holy Spirit,
everywhere the giver and renewer of life.
The Spirit justifies us by grace through faith,
sets us free to accept ourselves and to love God and neighbor,
and binds us together with all believers
in the one body of Christ, the Church.
The same Spirit
who inspired the prophets and apostles
rules our faith and life in Christ through Scripture,
engages us through the Word proclaimed,
claims us in the waters of baptism,
feeds us with the bread of life and the cup of salvation,
and calls women and men to all ministries of the church.
In a broken and fearful world
the Spirit gives us courage
to pray without ceasing,
to witness among all peoples to Christ as Lord and Savior,
to unmask idolatries in Church and culture,
to hear the voices of peoples long silenced,
and to work with others for justice, freedom, and peace.
In gratitude to God, empowered by the Spirit,
we strive to serve Christ in our daily tasks
and to live holy and joyful lives,
even as we watch for God’s new heaven and new earth,
praying, “Come, Lord Jesus!”
—from “A Brief Statement of Faith,” Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), 1983
. . . but Jesus thinks I’m to die for.