Friday, 21 March 2008

Feast of the Brokenhearted

This is, of course, the Feast of Good Friday, but I call it The Feast of the Brokenhearted. Why? Because for Christians -- especially those first Christians -- it was the darkest day of their lives.

All their hopes and dreams seemed to be crushed.

When we have days like that, we say that our hearts are broken. All we have to do is look around us at the world to see how many millions of people are "celebrating" this feast day by suffering. They may have no idea that it is a special day for the Christian Chruch, but, nevertheless, it is their feast day as well.

The first picture I wanted to show you tonight comes from a Christian church where people would, indeed, know about Good Friday. The tragedy it reveals, however, is that it shows heartbreaking destrtuction. This destruction was done not by non-Christians but by Christians who happen to believe differently from those who worship in this church.

The poor, child Jesus, was not only crucified, He has now been decapitated as well.

This next photo appears to show three generations of women in a happy family. Don't be deceived. The young African woman was kidnapped as a young teenager by one of those so-called revolutionary armies to be used as a sex slave. The little girl was the child of rape -- father unknown.

When the young woman finally managed to escape and get back home with her daughter, she was ostracized by her family, especially her own mother, and forced to live as a beggar. Finally, after much persistance, she and her mother were reconciled and now lead a more or less peaceful co-existence.

The experience has made the young woman strong and determined, but left both her and her mother with broken hearts. And, of course, the young daughter has yet to face her "cross" when she learns the history of her conception and early life.

Then here is a photo of a Madonna and Child from a camp in Darfur -- both of whom seem to be starving to death!
The government in Khartoum has grounded all humanitarian aid flights to these camps -- seemingly indicating that they are no longer really necessary. Not only are these suffering people "heartbroken" so are those who are trying so hard to help and can't.

Another group that is suffering and seems to be fighting against insurmountable odds are the Tibetans. Here is the first quick draft of a drawing that I did. I saw a picture in the newspaper a few days ago of this boy monk leading a demonstration and I knew I wanted to draw him. The problem has been: what to do with the rest of the drawing?
While it is true that people are getting killed (on both sides), the Dalai Lama seems to be asking for something other than a "Free Tibet".
It seems to me that he is asking that Tibet have the kind of independence that would enable it, while still a part of China, to make its own internal decisions and retain its language, history, culture, tradition and religion.
They, too, are heartbroken as they long for their land, their sacred places, their monasteries. But, now their young people, no longer trained in the power of non-violence, are killing and being killed.
Returning to the more practical concerns of the life of an artist, however, I would really appreciate some help in finishing the "Tibetan" drawing. I am very undecided as to what I should have on the signs that are being carried.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
I should be posting again on Sunday when I will be introducing you to a very special Easter Bunny that my friend in Alabama sent me. Wait until you see the egg this bunny laid!!

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