When I asked Alex Grey recently for permission to share his latest painting in our daily meditations, he responded generously.
Dear Matt, How great to hear from you!! I just turned 70! Rick Doblin & I were born one day apart so we are having a celebration tonight at CoSM & Entheon.* We are doing what we can to embrace creativity and spirituality as a fruitful union. Of course, you can use anything of mine to share – You were the one to introduce me to Hildegard! Just saw one of her illuminations on exhibit at the New Museum in NYC at the Judy Chicago show. She assembled some outstanding women of Art Herstory as part of her feminist exhibition/retrospective.
The Green Hand is my homage to Viriditas!
If you are ever on the East Coast again we would love to host you here at CoSM.
At our University of Creation Spirituality, we offered an art as meditation course on Judy Chicago where students made their own “dinner plates” honoring women of the past including Hildegard.
Several years ago, on the occasion of the founding of CoSM, I endorsed Alex and Allyson’s work this way:
We are all blessed to be sharing the planet today—endangered that it is—with Alex and Allyson Grey. Why is that? Because their inspiring gifts of art and their generous dedication to creating sacred space highlights the marriage of creativity and spirituality which in turn ignites hope and empowers individuals and communities alike.
If the great mystic and scientist of the Middle Ages, Thomas Aquinas, is correct, then Spirit too enters such sacred spaces for he tells us that the same Spirit that hovered over the waters at the beginning of creation (we might say that hovered over the fireball at the beginning of creation) hovers over the mind of the artist at work.
We are all artists at work, not only undergoing the art of our daily living but also as makers or receivers of the artist’s gifts. CoSM is a testimony to the power of art to awaken and to heal and to bring alive the sacred in a time when humanity has fallen into a certain deafness to the call of the sacred which is reaching out to touch us whether from the wild cosmos or the daily revelations of nature or the holy human imagination.
To be continued.
See Matthew Fox, The Tao of Thomas Aquinas, pp. 53-56.
And Fox, Illuminations of Hildegard of Bingen, pp. 43-47.
And Fox, Creativity: Where the Divine and Human Meet.
Banner Image: “Every moment is an opportunity for love and transformation.” Interior view of the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors. Photo by RCubed on Flickr
Queries for Contemplation
What does it mean to you, what does it mean for the future of humanity, to learn from a great mystic and intellectual like Aquinas that “the same Spirit that hovered over the waters at the beginning of creation (we might say that hovered over the fireball at the beginning of creation) hovers over the mind of the artist at work”?
The Tao of Thomas Aquinas: Fierce Wisdom for Hard Times
A stunning spiritual handbook drawn from the substantive teachings of Aquinas’ mystical/prophetic genius, offering a sublime roadmap for spirituality and action.
Foreword by Ilia Delio.
“What a wonderful book! Only Matt Fox could bring to life the wisdom and brilliance of Aquinas with so much creativity. The Tao of Thomas Aquinas is a masterpiece.”
–Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit
Illuminations of Hildegard of Bingen
An introduction to the life and work of Hildegard of Bingen, Illuminations reveals the life and teachings of one of the greatest female artists and intellectuals of the Western Mystical Tradition. At the age of 42, she began to have visions; these were captured as 36 illuminations–24 of which are recorded in this book along with her commentaries on them.
“If one person deserves credit for the great Hildegard renaissance in our time, it is Matthew Fox.” – Dr Mary Ford-Grabowsky, author of Sacred Voices.
Creativity: Where the Divine and Human Meet
Because creativity is the key to both our genius and beauty as a species but also to our capacity for evil, we need to teach creativity and to teach ways of steering this God-like power in directions that promote love of life (biophilia) and not love of death (necrophilia). Pushing well beyond the bounds of conventional Christian doctrine, Fox’s focus on creativity attempts nothing less than to shape a new ethic.
“Matt Fox is a pilgrim who seeks a path into the church of tomorrow. Countless numbers will be happy to follow his lead.” –Bishop John Shelby Spong, author, Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism, Living in Sin