I was walking by Saint Patrick’s Cathedral on 5th Avenue and 51st street a couple of days ago. For those of you who don’t know, Gothic Architecture is among my favorite things in this world.
I’ve been inside this amazing place before. I could show you pictures of the internal clerestory, but none of them would be without print on the most wonderful part of the picture, which would be the light shining through the rose windows.
There are all sorts of reasons that one might chose to come to place like this. I simply love the aesthetic of this place, the sense of grandeur and attention to detail. One can feel pretty insignificant in the universe that surrounds them as they walk into a Gothic Style Cathedral, and this one is no exception. I came here to send my energies to the universe and to send a dear friend of mine to a peaceful rest after I got news of his untimely death on the other side of this country…
Whatever I was taught in Saturday school (my church was weird and did Sunday School and Saturdays), I learned to worship God in my own way. God was the light that shown through windows like these and mesmerized so many of us young children even as we all failed to understand the sermons of half the priests who spoke in front of the congregation. I myself never grew tired of such images of radiant beauty.
I grew so fond of the images of these Rose windows, in fact, that I rendered one of my own by hand on the inside cover of a book that I hope will one day house a few of my best short stories and pieces of artwork.
This may be an unusual way for one to worship God or to admire church, and to be honest, I have never truly believed that anyone needed church in order to worship God or the powers that be. Before the inevitable debates arise from this statement, I want to ask you what use the words of God are to a visual person if the light of God doesn’t shine upon the world?
Luckily I also happen to be a writer, and I found the words of the Bible quite interesting for a myriad of reasons, even as I gradually left the church itself.
But this blog entry isn’t even meant to be a treatise on why I love Gothic Architecture and stained glass Rose windows. Let’s just leave it at the fact that I do.
What I really mean to explore here is the definition of worship itself. Does humanity truly only worship the powers that be? Do we not also worship nature? The power of Gothic Architecture aside, I can scarcely think of anything easier for human beings to pay homage to than the sun, the moon and the stars, for instance. The anthropological studies of many ancient cultures suggests that this is a deeply historic, ingrained human notion. Even some of the great natural wonders of our world, like the Grand Canyon, have drawn excited tourists for decades with their awe inspiring scope. One cannot help but look at such a place and wonder how in the world it was ever created by the forces of nature.
And then there is human nature.
Though humanity is not without its flaws, so many of us seek perfection in many aspects of our lives. For some theorists in the realm of animal behavior, humanity is like other animals. The three most powerful instinctive desires for humans may be food, sex, and sleep. There is even a relatively famous song where the chorus is very simple, but poignant.
“All I want is food and creative love.”
How could the yearnings of the human soul be more easily stated? Wouldn’t we all like that?
What some of you may be starting to realize here is that I have begun to walk by the Saint Patrick’s Cathedral of late, and it does not always make me think of God. I think of worship. But I also think of burning desire.
I think of someone special to me, and words like these come from within:
I will see you soon my dearest love.
You’ll feel the gentle touch of my warm hand
I’ll follow the brightest stars above
To be beside you. I hope you understand.
I will one day leave this wretched place.
And you will finally know that all is well.
I will find you and caress your sweet face.
And I’ll recall exactly why I fell.
I’ll breathe in the sweet scent of your hair.
I will trace my hand across your cheek
My touch will tell you more than words could dare.
Kisses are the language I will speak.
I will taste the nectar of your lips,
explore the curve and valley of your back.
My hands will trace the curve of your hips
And I will know your love keeps me intact.
My lips will know the contours of your thighs
I’ll kiss your secret spots from head to toe.
Yet I will be stripped before your eyes
And you will know all that there is to know.
I know the very fire in my core
will be aroused when I whisper your name.
Always know your key unlocks that door.
But dare you fly, a moth unto the flame?
There is nobody in this world that will convince me that she is not just as beautiful as all the sunlit Rose windows in the world could ever be. I will worship true beauty in this world in its many forms. That is heaven to me.