Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Soul Pancake

I was listening to an interview with Rainn Wilson of the office. He was talking about his Bahá'í Faith. This is a religion started in Persia in the 1800's and, at the risk of over-simplifying, has as a basic tenet, the unity of major world religions. I am somewhat familiar with people of this faith, as many of them, without a presence nearby, have chosen to worship at our church, Unitarian Universalist Church of Lancaster. You might correctly infer from the name of my church that unity is something I believe in too. The world is getting smaller. Multi-culturalism is the result. Unity makes sense to me. Domination of one culture over another or one religion over another--not so much. So you can bet that I was listening to the interview and nodding often.

Rainn said that Bahá'í has many names for God, but this is true in most churches. God the creator, God the redeemer, God the merciful. But Rainn mentioned one name in particular. God the fashioner. This is God as artist, designer. I have taken and taught a curriculum in my church which is called, You the Creator. It focuses on the creative process which is a mirror of God as creator. Rainn went further to describe creative work as prayer.

This isn't new. I studied a bit of the work of German Idealist Philosopher G.W.F Hegel who claimed that art, along with religion and philosophy was a primary means through which spirit was manifested.

Often when I write or paint, I am so "in the moment" that I cannot help but to think that I am a puppet of or a magnet to spirit energy, completely bypassing the intellectual and emotional realms. Call it what you want: prayer or meditation or lifeline. There is something to all these claims that creative work is sacred work. Rainn Wilson started a new website for dialogs of spirit and art--without the woo-woo factor. www.soulpancake.com Check it out.

1 comment:

Kathy said...

thanks for this information. it fits perfectly into my project of exploring the creative impulse. I suspected it might be this important!