January 3 - Faith

(Spectrumbot) #1

This is my first Sabbath as curator of this collection of art expression pieces meant to act as a kind of journey in worship. As nearly all Spectrum readers have probably already realized, spiritual experience is wholly abstract and happens between synapses in the mind, and so we create acts of religion to symbolize, process, and share the shadows of what we spiritually experience. For this reason, the jargon used in spiritual circles tends to have a variance of interpretations assigned to it. On the outset I will share with you the strain of definitions that I will be functioning within. I use the following definitions for the following terms.

Spiritual: That having to do with what is both incalculable and experiential.

Worship: The active acknowledgement of self-limitation in the face of the incompressible.

The Kingdom of Heaven: The body of people committed to pursuing actions to build up the ideals of Heaven as stated by Jesus - egalitarianism, love for God and others, servant leadership, etc.

These are the presuppositions on which this collection of expression pieces rests.


January 3

I remember when I was 14 I had the distinct feeling that I would somehow figure everything spiritual out and I would then live in a state of contented spiritual comfort. What I have found instead is that my experience ebbs and flows between feeling spiritual comfortable, and spiritually restless. Is this a common experience? Are some blessed with absolute spiritual comfort here on earth? Is such a comfort truly a blessing? This piece reminded me of the balance between states of restlessness and comfort.

Introit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBiVq2MsCbs

Opening Hymn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPKpkrqBwNs

Call to Prayer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0SBamE107Y

Opening Prayer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzX5AJ-GalU

Spoken Word: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ORDQFh0Byw

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/6536

Happy New Year Through Music from The Spectrum Staff

Man, you gotta give to those Mormons, they sure know how to belt out a hymn.

(jeremy) #3

that’s for sure…there’s a real thrill in hearing and seeing so many people exercising such skill and discipline…

(Thomas J Zwemer) #4

Seems we are getting mighty close to Emerson’s transcendentalism. Worship is objective, it has a divine person who is the object of our adoration and praise, it is also supplication for guidance, healing, forgiveness growth. By beholding we do become changed. These are the fruits of the Spirit that Paul speaks of. The range of expression can be as wide as the Mormon Tabernacle Choir or a solo by Yo Yo Ma. We all would like to recapture the experience of Adam and his walks with his Creator… But there is a danger in self absorption., Just exactly what does the hymn mean by taking time to be holy? It certainly has the danger of becoming an ego trip. Tom Z

(Sirje) #5

You Spectrum people are putting out good stuff lately. Thank you.

Lesley Hazleton’s idea of faith being possible only as it’s accompanied by doubt needs more consideration, I think.

(Steve Mga) #6

Yes, Doubt is a component in the mind.
However, Faith brings Action
And, Action brings Faith
Even when part of the Brain continues to Doubt.

As the Chinese Proverb states – The First Step is a Journey of a Thousand Miles.

Doubt allows us to question, and to feel comfortable questioning. Doubt propels one to continue to investigate, to look for other clues, to look below the surface of the way something was worded, something was described. “Can we through knowledge find out God?” But Knowledge does allow us to Touch God, even if it is like the blind man touching an Elephant, or Mary kissing the face of Jesus. There IS a knowing even IF God is Unknowable.

(George Tichy) #7

Steve, a major problem is created when people start doubting that Doubt is an inevitable and helpful component of our human intellectual and intelligent functioning.

Doubt, often manifested as curiosity, has been a powerful and constant propelling factor in the human search for reality and truth throughout the ages. It’s only when doubt stops acting that people become intellectually paralyzed (also applicable to spirituality).

It’s only when people say, “We already know it all” that Doubt is denied it’s place and role in progress. This is why I personally value the Agnostic approach so much, one that enables us to say, “I don’t know but I want to know.” Otherwise, when people already “know it all,” they will spend the rest of their lives actually not knowing it.

Especially in Adventism, the agnostic approach is a must if one doesn’t want to end up entangled in great confusion, which obviously cam have “grave consequences.”

(Steve Mga) #9

Yes, unless one is a Friend of Doubt, it is difficult to understand and appreciate a person like Leslie.
I recently read a piece by Rob Bell. And it made me appreciate him and his journey. It also made me understand the persons who wrote down words on “paper” so we could read them in what we call the Psalms. All those persons were Questioners, were Doubters, so to speak, looking for God, but unsure as to where He was, at times. They didnt know much about Him, but attempted to explain Him to themselves.
And so, we have great literature because of that Questioning, that Seeking, that Doubting that what “they knew” was real and was “the truth”.
I think this is what makes The Bible such a great piece of Literature on the one hand, and on the other challenges us to find the Real God. Challenges us to discover “truth” in a Community setting. To search for the small “t” and not become hindered by the Big “T”.

(Steve Mga) #10

Experimental Musical Instruments which are both fun and enjoyable to listen to, and perhaps even vocalize [sing] with are definitely NOT on the Local SDA Church music horizon.
Thanks to the Author for allowing Spectrumites to enjoy this Introit to the Worship Experience.

PS: King David would have a lot of fun with this instrument. I believe he would also write music for this instrument and for Trinidad Steel Bands.