Non-Commissioned Altarpieces for the Seven Churches of the Apocalypse Revelation

Images of Deity


Jesus in the Deer Park suggests that, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus says things similar to the words of the Buddha about the Four-Fold Noble Truth, the Dharma. The Buddha sets up the eight-spoked wheel of the Dharma.Jesus proposes the eight Beatitudes.
The Circle of pain, rooted in desire, needing safeguard by The reduction of desire, finds fruition in the eight rightnesses, Whereas the desire for deepest happiness would find its Fruition in the relentless kindnesses.
The Noble Eightfold Path: Right View, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, Right Concentration is the Buddha’s teaching on how to achieve “emptiness of desire” and enlightenment. This could be Sidhartha’s “Sermon on the Mount”.

Blessed are Those who Mourn; They shall be Comforted
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Blessed are Those who Hunger and Thirst after Justice;They shall Have Their Fill.


Blessed are You when Men Do All Manner of Things against you for My Name’s Sake; Yours is the Kingdom of God.
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Blessed are the Merciful; They shall Obtain Mercy.
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Among the Beatitudes of Jesus and the Dharma of the Buddha, spiritual scholars find a way to deal with pain. A positive way the Christian tradition is in apposition to the negative way of the Buddha’s Dharma. But they are both sides of the same “coin;” The Yin and Yang of a whole circle, the shadow joined to the silver lining of the clouds. The difference is that in doing as Jesus says, the portal to Nirvana is the Cross. Mohammed, moreover, sees Acceptance of the will of Allah as the way out of the effects of original sin. All true religious communities, whose initial response is, exactly that, response to a communication from Some Other, some Terrifying and Appealing Other, have a positive/negative way to get control over the lesser person, the animal nature, the original sin.

There is an essential difference in their principal insights but six hundred years of humans living on the earth might just have made the “collective unconscious” big enough to accept the more demanding later Truth told in God’s Name by the Christ. Even later did God speak some truth to Mohammed. Islam means Acceptance (Buddha series).

This profound truth is a later commission of the Buddha’s great truth to us. I believe Mohammed also adds to the teaching of Jesus. If we could all take comfort, rather than offense, in the idea that God communicates with whom He wills, it would help us to understand the place in Abba Yahweh’s world of all the critters whom He loves. After all “…the Wind Blows Where It Will…;” the Holy Spirit chooses whom She chooses! The devote must learn to Listen to the Voice of the Bodhisatva (Buddha series). We have no right to imprison the Spirit. There must be the spirit of truth at The Heart of the Church (in landscapes), one which can be open to the Lord, who comes unexpectedy from the Western Happiness, like Avalokitesvara (in Images of the Deity), as Kwan Yin (in the sculptures), as the White Buffalo to the Indians of the Plains, or as a Rider on a Pale Horse (in the Grey Series), named Faithful and True (in Images of the Deity).

In Capital Punishment (Buddha series) we put part of ourselves off from the whole. There is a way that desiring to be rid of what ails us is a fragmenting of the whole fabric of life. We must tend the flame of love for all the world, all the universe. It is all God and must be enfolded. In the end of this whole journey, I believe, Michael Will Bring the Wounded Lucifer Back to the Throne of Heaven Where the Mother of All Under the Gaze of God Will Oversee the Reunion of Animus and Anima (in Grey Series) for all eternity. The holding of Yin and Yang in equilibrium is somehow our destiny!

If even the leaders do not hear because they are engulfed in the burdens of wealth, power, and prestige, so that these very leaders seem dessicated, mummified. In their service of Holy Mother the Church the hierarchy can become enthralled by riches, power, and prestige, then Holy Mummy the Church (in the Mummy Series) becomes a cruel joke. As Alec Guinness (Fellini’s Brother Sun, Sister Moon) in the voice and visage of Pope Innocent IV says to Francis of Assisi, “We are encrusted with power and jewels, while you, my son, are free…” as a bird. Would that we could all possess that freedom!

The Church needs to remain open to the cry of the poor. So that SHE might bring justice to the ruinous tribal and commercial destruction of those Belgian African nuns or those Rwandan Catholic murderers. From the Heart of the Church (landscapes) the Spirit wishes to free us. If the leaders try to hold Her down, Christ still comes again to those who seek Him. We must not worry that He cannot make it through to us.

The spirit of truth would allow all learning to be rooted in God rather than in gain. The end should make all of us more tolerant of the differences between races and species, creeds and instincts. We would revere God’s creation for the short time we would but share membership in it. Then we might approach the end as the Second Coming , as a Communion with a Greater One (Buddha series) and be at peace…throughout our lives.