Thursday, April 12, 2007
I have an uneasy relationship with my faith - Christianity. I live for sacred music, but being an intelligent, educated woman, there are parts of the doctrine that - out of concern for my own sanity - I tend to block out of my mind every Sunday morning as I sit in church.
Still, I look to the faith for spiritual nourishment, and I'm always trying to reconcile myself with the symbol of Christ, and its meaning. My long-time interest in Jungian psychology tells me that every symbol lives in each of us. If I can't wrap my mind around the idea that a literal Christ died to atone for my sins, I can at least try to see the transformative power of the Christ-image in my own life.
These have been difficult weeks for me. Since my boyfriend and I broke up, I wander through my days with a low-grade ache in the centre of my chest. The colour seems washed out of everything. I'm restless, and I don't want to be alone with myself. I can't concentrate on my writing. Nothing seems worthwhile.
(And I just spent an ill-advised afternoon listening to Jann Arden. How much worse could my despair get?)
There is a MacKenzie-sized hole in my life right now, and it's all I can do to keep reminding myself that every end is a beginning, and new life will follow the death and decay of the old. I was sitting on my toilet in the dark just now, blowing my nose after a crying jag, when I had a sudden vision of Mary Magdalene sitting by the tomb, weeping.
I could imagine her pain - feel her despair. She'd already watched her teacher die on the cross; now she had lost his body. I heard her beg the gardener, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away."
And the gardener was Jesus. She didn't even recognize him.
How often do we mourn what is lost, not realizing it has been transformed, and stands right in front of us?
This collage is from 2005. The image came to me spontaneously - a crow flying towards the sun. I love crows - they are amazing, intelligent birds. One of my favorite Lieder is the Schubert song Die Krahe (The Crow), from the song cycle Die Winterreise (Winter's Journey). For many summers I was heartbroken at the disappearance of crows from my hometown of London, Ontario, due to the West Nile virus. (The crow population is now slowing increasing again.)
The man's face was cut from an issue of Runner's World magazine, so I know he is a runner, but have no idea what his name is. I liked the gold colour of his face, and thought he would make a good sun god.