Monday, July 31, 2006

Omega - The Last of this July

Eddie Brazil, who runs a site for the paranormalist Harry Price (wiki entry), also has a ton of great "paranormal" photographs at his gallary. Here are a few:

Burgess Park, London


Poltergiest 1980


The Face of Christ

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Psi - The Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Multiplication of the Loaves, Outer Narthex at Saint Saviour in Chora Istanbul


"Since Jesus knew that they were going to come and carry him off
to make him king, he withdrew again to the mountain alone. "
from todays Gospel, (John 6)

The miracle of the multiplication is the only miracle Jesus preforms in every gospel, this is oddly interesting. The other interesting thing about this reading is the ending, quoted above. Jesus does this fantasical thing, and then withdraws into the mountains alone to escape being enthroned. Very interesting.

Chi - On War and other Demons

The Face of War, Salvadore Dali

The Pope has called for immediate, with stress on the immediate, cease-fire. Some may say, "why? Israel has a right to such and such." So, in brief, here is why Israel is wrong.

There are three rules that apply to every moral decision, first and foremost, "One may never do evil so that good may result", then the golden rule, and third one shouldn't cause another to stumble (CCC 1789). All three apply to the current situation, and all show why there should be an immediate cease fire, just as the Pope has appealed. But more specifically in the catechism's discussion of war there is a statement that directly addresses Israel's current attitude of "you deserve it if your there" toward the innocents that they are killing:
"Every act of war directed to the indiscriminate destruction of whole cities or vast areas with their inhabitants is a crime against God and man, which merits firm and unequivocal condemnation. (CCC 2314)"


(Update: Israel has now agreed to a temporary cease-fire)


Saturday, July 29, 2006

phi


I came across this very interesting history of stained glass in Egypt during the Islamic era. Because of the belief that images of people are forbidden, all the glass is abstract, in addition it states that stained glass was not only used in Mosques, but also in public buildings and houses.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Upsilon

Somehow I stumbled across the artwork of one Fernando Llosa, and thought it rather lovely:


Moose Up The Sleave, (acrylic on board)


The Visionary, (acrylic on board)


The Image Maker,(Print from Sumi Ink Paintings on Glass)


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(An interesting aside: The Film Studio MGM's slogan, found around the roaring lion, is "ars gratia artis", the latin for the famous "art for art's sake".)

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Tau

I came across this very interesting Flat Earth Society, whose sole goal is to deprogram the myth that the earth is round. This lead me down a road to the Mappa Mundi of the middle ages, which depict the earth sphereically. Often they were placed in psalters and rather than give a "true" geography they gave a theological geography, as in the map below.

This map is described in a study on medieval maps:
"The outstandingly beautiful Psalter Map ... include angels and fantastic creatures decorating the map, with the terrestrial paradise placed at the top of the map, closest to God, and Jerusalem at the very centre. The outlines of the continents have by now become rather vague, and possibly even unimportant. It is a beautifully decorated work of art and would scarcely have been used for navigational purposes."

Psalter mappamundi, 1225 A.D.


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Sigma




While drifting from one Catholic blog to another I began to see this very strange corollary: Catholics like The Colbert Report. Sure its super cynical and you can't believe anything he says is what he means, but there's still something there that everyone sees. The above bit is rather good, I especially like the part about science finding a cure for ethics. Also found that he is in fact catholic through and through.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Rho - after the sixteenth sunday in ordinary time

Lonely (Mary Magdalene), Leah Piken


"You must come away to some lonely place all by yourselves and rest for a while’; for there were so many coming and going that the apostles had no time even to eat. So they went off in a boat to a lonely place where they could be by themselves."
From The Gospel Reading (Mark)

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Pi - Posting in the past, in the present

So I was looking for a cool Ecce Homo and came across a polish painter-monk sainted by Pope John Paul II: Saint Brat Albert. After perusing his works I found alot of his paintings rather amazing.


Opuszczona plebania

Szara godzina (Cmentarz włoski)


Cmentarz włoski



Ecce Homo

Friday, July 21, 2006

Omicron

Allegory on the Blessings of peace, Peter Paul Rubens

The Melkite archbishop in Haifa, Israel has sent out a plea for help to the church, the eastern Catholics within Israel are not receiving help from the government of Israel because they are Arabs and the situation has become dire. (The Melkite Eastern Catholics are those Byzantine Orthodox who remained loyal to the papacy throughout the various schism, or who repledged allegiance to the See of Peter after the schism.)

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(<-- The Ladder Of Divine Ascent)
I thought this story from the sayings of the desert fathers suits the situation:

"It was said of Abba John the Persian that when some evildoers came to harm him, he took a basin and wanted to wash their feet. But they were filled with confusion, and began to do penance."

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Xi


(St George's Cathedral: Beirut, Lebanon)

Lebanon is the birthplace and home of the Eastern Rite Maronite Catholics. This rite was founded by Saint Maron the hermit in the early fifth century, and has remained faithful to the See of Peter ever since, even when other Eastern Orthodox saw fit to schism. In 1610 Maronite monks were the first to bring a printing press into the arabic world, stemming the Arabic Renaissance. The current Lebanese constitution makes it manditory that the president be a Maronite.


(Our Lady of Lebanon Shrine: in Harissa, Lebanon)

The Pope has proclaimed this Sunday, July 23, as a special day of prayer and penance for a peaceful resultion to the current situation in the Middle East.


The Feast day for Saint Sharbel, the Maronite, will be in four days, which is sadly appropriate for current circumstances.

Saint Sharbel, Ora Pro Nobis.
Our Lady of Lebanon, Ora Pro Nobis

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Nu


This Icon goes under the very beautiful title: The Joy of all That Sorrow

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Mu

Demon and Angel with Tamara's Soul, Mikhail Vrube


On Angels
"[it is the] mind of the Church, how great the dignity of the soul, since each one has from his birth an angel commissioned to guard it"
Saint Jerome (Comm. in Matt., xviii, lib. II)

"Although after the Day of Judgment men will not be led any more to salvation by the ministry of the angels, still those who are already saved will be enlightened through the angelic ministry"
Aquinas (Summa I:108:7)

"Both a good and a bad [Demon] angel by their own natural power can move the human imagination. This may be explained as follows. For it was said above, that corporeal nature obeys the angel as regards local movement, so that whatever can be caused by the local movement of bodies is subject to the natural power of the angels."
Aquinas (Summa I:108:7)

And Demons
"The demon cannot put thoughts in our minds by causing them from within, since the act of the cogitative faculty is subject to the will; nevertheless the devil is called the kindler of thoughts, inasmuch as he incites to thought, by the desire of the things thought of, by way of persuasion, or by rousing the passions."
Aquinas (Summa I:111:2)


Monday, July 17, 2006

lambda

The Angel of Death, Gustave Moreau

And to accompany this wonderful image and equally great quote from Moreau:
"I believe only in what I do not see."

Sunday, July 16, 2006

kappa - fifteenth sunday in ordinary time

The Fall of Icarus, Odilon Redon


"I was no prophet,
nor have I belonged to a company of prophets;
I was a shepherd and a dresser of sycamores. "
Amos 7:14, from the first reading today



Icarus goes well with the motif of the sending out of the twelve, and also Amos. Any connection to be made to Redon is always a connection worth making.

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Also I came across this very interesting history of a Turkish Epic about the prophet Muhammed, written in the 14th century by the blind man Mustafa son of Yusuf from Erzurum, and titled: Siyer-i Nebi. Two centuries later the ruler of Turkey ordered the work to be illustrated, and it was. (This all seems odd, I thought images of the prophet were bad, but either way they are very beautiful.) Here is one of the illustrations.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

iota

So something different. Been reading some Schwitter's, came across a poem based on a drawing by Chagall which was pretty grand. This painting <-- was the final product of the sketch Schwitter's writes on. The poem was translated by Pierre Joris and Jerome Rothenberg.

Der Trinker, Marc Chagall

Kurt Schwitters, " On a Drawing By Marc Chagall"

Playing card lyres fish, the head in the window.

the animal head lusts the bottle.
Athwart the bourcing mouth.
The headless man.
Hand wags sour knives.
Playing card fish squander dumpling bottle.
And a table drawer.
Too dumb.
And souly rounds the knob at table.
Fish pushes table, stomach sickens swordswipes.
Drunkard's stem dumbly does eye the doleful beast,
The eye's much lust the bottle's aromatics.



Friday, July 14, 2006

theta - Some Saint Anthony Temptations

I suppose everyone has seen Salvador Dali and Bosch's Temptation of Saint Anthony, but there are a wealth of others that are equally strange and creepy.



Bernardino PARENZANO
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Leonora Carrington

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stained glass by Patrick Reyntiens
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Max Ernst

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

eta

Allegory of Life, or The Dream of Raphael, or Melancholy of Michelangelo
Giorgio Ghisi

Monday, July 10, 2006

zeta



Allegory of Death - Book of Hours for Rome Use  France, Paris, early 16th century

Sunday, July 09, 2006

epsilon - fourteenth sunday in ordinary time

Job at Prayer Marc Chagall


And to keep me from being too elated by the abundance of revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to harass me, to keep me from being too elated. Three times I besought the Lord about this, that it should leave me; but he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."
2 Corenthians 12: 7-9 (second reading today)


A great, perhaps even greatest, passage of St. Paul.

A great mystery: How is God's power made perfect through man's weakness?

Friday, July 07, 2006

Delta

The fourth, I'm lazy, so this is it.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Gamma



The Flight of Enoch - Abigail Sarah Bagraim

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Beta

Cain Slaying Abel -- Lower choir of church of Tecamachalco, Puebla, Mexico


"And Cain said to Abel his brother: Let us go forth abroad. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and slew him. And the Lord said to Cain: Where is thy brother Abel? And he answered, I know not: am I my brother's keeper? And he said to him: What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth to me from the earth."
Genesis 3:8-10
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This apparently occured in Damascus in the Blood Tears Cave on Mount Qasyoun. Saddly there doesnt seem to be the dearth of artistic output based on this event as I thought there would be. There is and interesting sequence by Ruben Alterio, simply called: Caïn et Abel.






Alpha

fragment from the predella of an altarpiece painted for the church of San Domenico in Siena



In the beginning and all that.



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