We visit the Cathedral of Zamora.
I wish to show a story — an approach, an encounter, an experience, that changes you.
The main altar portrays the transfiguration of Jesus — a powerful experience, witnessed by his desciples. This is a story in the life of Jesus, described in the New Testiment.
I read Chapter 65 of the Tao te Ching:
“The ancient Masters
didn’t try to educate the people,
but kindly taught them to not-know.”
We cannot explain religious experience — but it is at the heart of religions everywhere.
“When they think that they know the answers,
people are difficult to guide.”
The scenes behind show the crucifixion of Jesus.
“When they know that they don’t know,
people can find their own way.”
“If you want to learn how to govern,
avoid being clever or rich.”
“The simplest pattern is the clearest.
Content with an ordinary life,
you can show all people the way
back to their own true nature.”
i include religious artwork – each image tells a story.
“Don’t touch me,” Jesus says to Mary Magdaline. She was probably his physical lover and she was the one to whom he appeared first after his death. He was an apparition — not completely physical. Her story of this encounter probably triggered similar experiences. Our thinking and traditions shape our experiences — but there are mysteries involved.
Jesus comforted by the angel. He was in the Garden of Gethsemane — the evening before his crucifixion and death.
Head of John the Baptist. John was arrested and killed for advocating innovative religious ideas.
“If you want to govern the people,
you must place yourself below them.”
Saint Anthony’s vision — Meditators finds that our brains continually bring forth ideas, thoughts, emotions. Some seem to come from outside — but the process is a mystery.
Ancient images of Jesus and his disciples
Christianity, as shaped by the apostle Paul, fit the needs of the people of its era — there is a series of levels within the religious structure — some above others, a complexity similar to everyday life.
The flood associated with Noah’s ark.
Jesus baptized by John the Baptist.
The apostles of Jesus — no one knows how they actually looked, but patterns emerged so that medieval artists provided consistent portrayals of each apostle.
“If you want to lead the people,
you must learn how to follow them.”
A tapestry showing a story from Jesus — the workers receive equal pay no matter how many hours they worked. Many of Jesus’ teachings advocate ideas that are in conflict with modern Capitalism. Even in its early forms, Christianity deviated from the teachings of Jesus.
Saint Christopher carries the infant Jesus across a river. Saint Christopher is no longer on the official calendar of saints.
The position of images indicates relationships. If future people, who had no knowledge of Christianity, encountered Christian relics from this cathedral, they would probably conclude that those who came to the cathedral worshiped many human gods – some more important than others.
This image of Jesus on his throne in heaven shows the saintly women on his right and saintly men on his left. Those closest to him, his Mother Mary, Mary Magdalene, and Saint John, the Apostle, Saint Peter, Saint Paul were regarded as most important.
The stories hold people’s attention and gave shape to their religious ideologies.
I am interested in your particular story, the one that gives shape to your live and your way of thinking.