Sunday, February 03, 2008

theology of beauty - what???

What benefit does this have to me as a spiritual person?
There are probably four big benefits that I can immediately recognize, available to each of us who are willing to engage God in this way.

1. We allow ourselves to be opened up to the beauty around us and God’s presence in it. Consequently, we find ourselves more concerned with honoring Him in those beautiful things, thanking Him for them, and inviting Him to do something more beautiful in us.
2. Our understanding of beauty is expanded from simply ‘prettiness’ to an understanding of God’s presence in the world, such that we begin to see beauty in acts of charity, justice, and creativity.
3. We also increase our ability to see through the fake and vain beauty that much of our western world has adopted as beauty-in-truth. We see that there is more to being beautiful than simply having certain physical proportions, certain hair and clothes, and certain fame.
4. We learn how to speak to other people about what we find beautiful, which is often a reflection of our spirituality, and allows them to ask questions in a safe environment about our beliefs.

If we’re honest, many of us have no working conception of beauty as God understands it. At best, we decide what beauty is for ourselves based on what we like; at worst, we swallow the lies of sex and wealth along with the rest of the world.

For us to truly be committed to following the way of Christ, we must continually turn over our thinking selves to God to be renewed.

This series is simply one small step in that direction.


  1. its funny about beauty - that the most beautiful thing is not perfect usually. We just recorded our youth cd and the name was: my messy beautiful life - our stories.
    i've really been thinking about this in context of social justice...God sees the gardens in the junkyards - the junkyard people!
    not sure what your series is about, but just thought i'd share that!

  2. This series left me down on myself at first. I like music now and then but mostly it makes me nervous..what's that all about? Art and museums, again make me very nervous. So I really was down on myself. The very cool part of this series is, I had to examine my black and white serious self and think about beauty.

    I have a good friend who likes to date his 80 something grandma frequently (dinner, movie etc). When I picture this grandma getting ready for her date with her grandson THAT touches my heart and those are the places I find truely beautiful. The beautly I see in this world is in smiles, innocence, trust and the way we love one another. When someone catches that in a painting, in a song, in a tender moment, in a broken heart...I'm totally melted. Thank you for making me think....any my eyes are opening again.....thanx.