Tuesday, January 1, 2013

The Center of My Life

St. Sebastian-themed Tie
The tie to the left was my one art project this year at the family resort at which we were on vacation.  It is multi-colored--I hardly realized there were nine different and mostly pastel colors) of Sharpie and I didn't even use them all.  In the middle you find two arrows and a coarse drawing of an open book.  The open book was intended to represent the Bible.  I had not intended it, but my sister said there was a bit of a snakeskin look to the tie.

As I enter the new year, I think about what the tie represents.  We are not insects, but if we think of the body as consisting of the head, the torso, and the legs the tie is worn down the center of the central part of the body.  Thus, I look for symbols of how what it represents as the center of my life.  And most of what it brings to me are things that relate to my end of year blog that reflected on 2012 and looked ahead to 2013.

First, it shows creativity.  Readers may have their own opinions as to whether it shows much talent, but my wife (who was making a scarf while I made my tie in the class last week) thought it showed creativity that she does not often see in me.  That is not to say that I have no creativity.  Just that it does not often come out through drawing as opposed to words, music, or even my teaching.  I am planning a new class for 2013 and trying to revise several others.  And who knows what other things I will be called on to be creative for in 2013 on the job.  Each year brings new and interesting challenges.  I look forward to continue to using my creativity and hope that it can remain central to my life.

The Bible is at the center of what will show when I wear the tie.  My spirituality is central to my life.  Thinking about what maters an why.  For me, that is manifested through my relationship with church.  Being part of the worship band.  Teaching Sunday school.  Helping out with the running of Sunday school.  Being a part of the St. Pius X community.  But thinking about what matters and why is not just about church.  (And not about church for everyone else.)  Spirituality can be about running.  Spirituality can be about not wasting any talent as a talent is as important a resource in the world as oil or water or wheat or gold.  Spirituality in its many forms is central to my life.

The Bible and the two arrows are both reminders of themes from St. Sebastian's life.  I have written a great deal about what I think of St. Sebastian and why over the past year in the process leading to the completion of my tattoo.  This Saturday, I will take the final step in a touch up visit with the artist.  St. Sebastian is part of my spirituality.  St. Sebastian is part of a reminder to speak out.  St. Sebastian is part of a a reminder to get back up again and keep trying. St. Sebastian is also an important reminder of just how much we rely on others and the hope and help they bring to our lives.  He would not have been able to continue after being shot by archers if it were not for the help of another.  The arrows themselves represent challenges.  There are many challenges in life--and there will continue to be many more.  All of them have to be faced an either overcome or set aside to the degree possible. The facing and overcoming relate to St. Sebastian.  The setting aside to the degree possible comes back to part of the Serenity Prayer--accepting what I cannot change.

The multiple colors coud be one of two things.  In the spirit of St. Sebastian they could represent the heterogenous group of individuals who help me in my life.  Taking the "snakeskin" comment and thinking about snakes in the Bible, we could also think of them as representing the heterogenous challenges.  In either case, there is a pattern.  Part of my way of dealing things is finding the patterns and using them as a way to represent the challenges and good aspects of life for my own purposes in sorting things out.

All this from a two hour project with a silk tie and a bunch of Sharpies.  Who knows what this year will bring in creativity and blogging with this type of start.  

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