Monday, August 04, 2008

Choice, or Not?

This morning I was reading this blog that has caught my attention lately. Her post today is about one of Michaelangelo's sculptures, which she saw at the Louvre - and about God's creation. As I read it I was reminded of going to the Prado in Madrid, walking into one of the galleries where some of Goya's more grostesque paintings were hung. And it raised thoughts about what we choose to create and how much choice we really have after all, in the creation process.
Goya's "Black Paintings," depicting war and suffering, were done after he'd gone through an illness that left him deaf. The dark images no doubt reveal the darkness that was in him. Did he have a choice? Could he have painted a lovely pastoral scene during that time in his life? And is one image of more value than the other because it brings pleasure? We would tend to think so, but I wonder. Goya's dark images had a powerful affect on me as a sheltered young woman from North America. They opened my eyes. I began to see more in the streets of Spain than just the architecture. I saw the people. Sometimes I saw their pain.
This leads to questions about writing as a Christian. Many would prefer that we write only about what is pleasant, never allowing the darkness of the world onto the page. But what if that's what is in us? What if that's what needs to be written? What if our readers need to be shocked into opening their eyes?

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