Updated: Jul 2, 2019
Gazing at the image before me, I was struck by its expressive detail and emotion-eliciting details. I was beholding the lovely work of a rendition of Simeon holding the baby Jesus, with Anna looking on in amazement. The look on Simon's face! It's absolutely precious.
The artist, Jan van't Hoff, was born in 1959. That is right, 1959. This is a mere 10 years before me. In fact, I have every reason to believe he is still alive. This is modern art! Somehow, I am not sure what shelf the Chicago Institute of Art would place this painting, but it certainly looks like it would be amongst the greats. And then it struck me.
Beautiful work is still being created.
In this day of phones, internet, shallow lives filled with disposable relationships and unstable futures, someone somewhere is creating beautiful work.
This weekend I was also exposed to a different type of beautiful work. It was the work of silence and meditation. It is beautiful in what it does to the soul. Yes, a human being can be a beautiful mess, and if submitted to the right things, it can emerge as the sprout of a beautiful work.
All of my bodywork training has been a focus of the body, with some work in the intellect or mind. I have to be honest when I say I thoroughly enjoy the meshing of the mind (intellect) and the body. The work of neurokinetics caught my eye because of that reason. I love anatomy, kinesiology, and physiology for the same reason. I even like the study of fascia. But people are more than bones, blood and fascia and a spleen. There's more.
It gets so sticky at this point. Yes, I have deeply rooted spiritual beliefs. But not everyone does. If I bring the spirit into this work, am I breaking some sort of unspoken barrier of sorts?
And yes, how much richer would my own practice and self-care become if I allowed this meshing?
So, I observed a couple of things this weekend that have gotten me thinking about these concepts.
My first exposure was that of Thai Yoga Massage given by (Paul Fowler) Blue Lotus Thai and the other was a retreat by a group called Sacred. Having these two things back to back was definitely from the Lord.
I have much more to say about this, but I will save some thoughts for later. Two things have struck me pretty starkly though.
All work-- if it is to be beautiful-- starts from within. You can not create beauty in others until you have worked it out in your own soul, heart, mind and body first.
And All good things work slowly and steadily and softly. The beautiful work is a slow, meditative work that does not rush and push and seek its own.