One-Minute Icon: The sad garden and the happy tree #epiphany

the happy tree can lead us out of the sad garden

I came across these words of Michael Katakis, a photographer who puts words and pictures together.

I thought it to be a sad garden whose only harvest was regret.

Those words made me think of our minds which can become a sad garden, when we become totally identified with our self-preoccupied narratives which are often negative and automatic.  However, things outside of ourselves can spring us out of our minds and into life.

In his book Holiness Donald Nicholl tells the story of how a face saved the life of Olivier Clement, the Orthodox theologian.

Olivier was at the time an atheist, although so unhappy he was considering suicide. As he walked along depressed, ‘his attention was riveted by the face of someone who was passing by. The person’s face was so radiant with meaning, full of such goodness as can only come from years of cultivating a loving heart. In a twinkling Clement’s suicidal thoughts were dispelled and a seed sown in his heart that was eventually to transform him into an ardent believer…’ (p.49)

This photo is of an ordinary humble tree. But whenever I see it it always glows with colour. If I am in the sad garden, this happy tree pulls me out of it. It has been an epiphany.

It doesn’t shout, or clap its hands, but it radiates joy. But in a twinkling it takes me out of myself.

Step out of clocktime for one minute. Look at the tree and notice your feelings. Are you in the sad garden or with the happy tree? What is the theology of your face today? Olivier Clement says there is a ‘theology of faces’.

Advertisements

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: