Sunday, March 23, 2008

Good Friday at the museum

I had a thought the other day while in Philly... I wonder what St Ignatius would have said about blogging through the spiritual exercises... not exactly silent.. is it?

I had other thoughts while at the Philadelphia museum of art, some prompted by women born in 1907.

Frida Kahlo's exhibit (till May 18, 2008) took us into her life in photographs and many self-portraits. She was not one to keep her emotions out of her work so we see the trauma experienced by a husband having an affair with her sister, a bus accident that crushed her leg and pelvis, two divorces from the same man, and a high protein diet prescribed by her doctor. Hard to look at because of their graphic nature, they showed a woman in pain. Made me curious what Jesus would have painted if he had taken some of his harder moments to canvas. What would I have painted? What would we see at your future exhibit?

20 years ago a friend looked at a doodle I had drawn and entitled it ... "a nice design ruined by a day at work." We taught at the same school.

Lee Miller had a nasty dose of childhood trauma, emerged as a model, made it onto the cover of Vogue, then said... "I want to be on the other side of the camera." And thus followed her dream and became a photographer. Who has benefited from your decision to ... ? Her exhibit will last till April 27, 2008 and featured 140 of her photographs.

After a snack, Mosaic Woman and I went our separate ways and soon enough I was sitting in front of Rogier vander Weyden's The Crucifixion with the Mourning Virgin and Saint John the Evangelist...

Which so matched what I prayed to that morning, John 19: 25-42, that I stayed on that stool and had me some more thoughts ... I think Ignatius would be OK with that.


  1. That's a good question indeed! I would think St. Ignatius might say, if you are doing the exercises in your daily life, and blogging is part of that life, then sure. He might also ask if it a distraction.

    I sometimes hold back from commenting on your posts around the exercises, I feel almost as if I'm disturbing your silence. (Yet, here I am, doing it!) Yet, I'm glad you are, since it's a window into those exercises for those who might be contemplating them.

    Do you know of Paul Mariani's book about his time with the Exercises? It's a redacted form of his diary...

    Happy Easter!! Alleluia...

  2. That's why I try not to blog every day about the experience. Plus sometimes it's just nice to meditate on the reading or thought for the day and not feel the pressure to come up with what I've called "the grand revelation" (at least, to my spiritual director and now you).

  3. I have to say I like this MUCH better than Paul Mariani's book.

    I'm not sure that doing the Exercises with a book contract in mind works. But the relative rawness of blogging -- that works for me.

  4. Spiritual exercise, I would venture to say, is good for us just about any way we might wish to approach it; and this much,for sure, is true: this old Pentecostal, tongue-talking, holy roller enjoys the review that you provide us here concerning your own experiences. Easter: year-round in our hearts!

  5. All-- thanks so much.

    Michelle-- I would say that it is not a distraction since in blogging I have found connections I hadn't seen earlier. I have read Paul M's book.

    spiritual e.-- I do not blog every night and sometimes it is not about the exercises, though it has been a central part of this blog.

    G.G.-- I was wondering if you knew a good publisher ;')

    Jim-- that description just points out how amazing blogging can be


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