The Art of the Thing


This month it’s about the art of the thing. Well, maybe it is always about the art of the thing, but this month in particular we are celebrating and leaning into the music of the African Diaspora, even as we continue to let the 64 Day Season for Nonviolence become part of our spiritual DNA. We are learning about the music of the thing…about how, when we stop resisting the river, the poetry flows.

American soul and jazz poet, musician and self defined “Blues-ologist” Gil Scott Heron was a prophet who left us too soon. As a “Blues-ologist”, he defined himself as “a scientist who is concerned with the origin of the blues”. In his brilliant work on the album Small Talk at 125th and Lenox, the irony of the life of a person who sees the dominant culture acutely while having mostly the gift of art to nullify its’ oppressive influence on him, is expressed with many nuances.” The Revolution Will Not be Televised” is one of those pieces, and it is so interesting to see that in just 40 years since that was written in 1070, the revolution DOES seem to be televised…But now maybe the question is: which revolution?
The real revolution always begins evolution. We are creative beings, or as the brilliant Royo Mapes writes, “We are angels, and we’re struggling to be human”. But the art of the thing is about never losing track of the larger reality…even as we are doing this earth thing. The larger reality exists in the timeless realm of the ancestors, of the many worlds which exist simultaneously, multi-dimensionally, within the time frame we keep trying to fit into a Google calendar. The larger reality speaks to us through story and ritual and in moments of flow…when “time” is suspended and we are able to really feel our angel wings.
And the answers we glimpse in the realms, in the music, through the dance and in the drums, in the artistry of the painter or the photographer or the film, in the trickster presence and the seeming catastrophic events which turn out to be gigantic blessings- if we learn to listen to their gift- keep us moving toward unity. As above, so below. as within so without. The kingdom of God is within..
This Sunday Phoenix Rising will share a story with us from the African continent. we have a guest artist for the jazz focus of the music to work along with the really amazing Voices of SANCTUARY NYC and Jeremy Mage , and our message will dance with these elements. We hope to share it with you. 2 pm 86th and Amsterdam.
Keep creating,
With love,
Rev. Jane

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