Sunday, December 24, 2006

Hail, the Newborn King

The Nativity - Barocci (or Baroccio), Federico (b. c. 1526-1535, Urbino; d. 1612, Urbino)
1597; Oil on canvas, 134 x 105 cm; Museo del Prado, Madrid


Porthos said...

Beautiful. Our Lady looks strangely (and compellingly) like a young Japanese or Korean woman in full, formal regalia.

Athos said...

Yes! The colour of her garments instead of being the pale, sky blue are a mauve that looks very silken and oriental.

God bless us all this Christmastide.

Porthos said...

Also the hairdo, the eyes and the profile.

God bless us all indeed.

Thanks for the papal preacher peace post above, too.

Athos said...


I tried to keep my mind on this image of Our Lady last night at Christmas Vigil Mass because sitting three rows ahead of me was a Japanese snow bunny -- fluffy short ski jacket, uggs, and apparently a tee that had too little material around her midriff to reach her snug jeans.


Big stupid male Athos. The angels singing, the shepherds adoring, Our Lady kneeling, Our Lord aborning.

I'm not in favor of burqas or even Amish buns, sensible shoes, and shin length skirts. But don't women have any idea of the effect of the effect of certain areas of (attractive) woman flesh on guys?

Porthos said...

Close your eyes and think of Madelaine Albright.

Athos said...

Wow. You have a real gift, Porthos. As a spiritual director I mean.

Not. (Joking)

As Aramis and I have corresponded about before in our ongoing discussion of aspects of conversion, even these baser feelings of attraction are useful.

(a) As we draw close to authentic conversion(s), of which a life of sanctification has many, we will be tempted to lesser, inauthentic conversions as it were.

(b) Even the object of our desiring has something to teach us. Right desire; wrong object. That is, go ahead and fall in love with her; just make sure the "her" is Our Lady, NOT just her (or her or her or her). Be drawn to Him, our Lord (but not him or him or him).

This is my interpretation of Girard's statement, "Deviated transcendency is a caricature of vertical transcendency. There is not one element of this distorted mysticism which does not have its luminous counterpart in Christian truth."

This is the lesson of Beatrix for Dante.

The object of desire is not the mere idol of my carnal hankerings, but the true Person to whom the icon points.