bellasemplicita

Regaining a lost love for beauty and simplicity.

Mah Nishtanah

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Ma nishtana ha lyla ha zeh mikkol hallaylot?

Why is this night different from all other nights?

Painting by Marc Chagall: ‘The Israelites are eating the Passover Lamb’ 1931

Classicism

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“One of the great Victorians has said that if classicism is the love of the usual beauty, romanticism is the love of the strange in beauty, and the statement gives to admiration the essence of the difference between the two.  The very words romance, romantic call up a vision, vague yet bright, that banishes the drabness and monotony of every day life with a sense of possible excitements and adventures.  Of course, if every day life did not look drab and monotonous there would be no reason to turn to romance.  That is primarily why the Greeks were not romantic.  Facts were full of interest to them.  They found enough beauty and delight in them to have no desire to go beyond.

But to Romans facts were not beautiful nor, in themselves, interesting.  The eagerness for inquiry into everything in the universe which had stamped Greece never reached Rome.”

- Edith Hamilton from ‘The Roman Way’ Chapter 10 – The Roman Way

Green

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I love snow.  But about mid-January, the monotone colors always get me.  I am always catching myself drooling over pictures of green – green paradises.  I thought  I might share some with you in case you are also catching spring-fever or rather green-fever a little early!

A Man Is Rich . . .

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“for a man is rich in proportion to the number of things

which he can afford to let alone” - Henry Thoreau, Walden

In Praise

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‘You, O Lord my God, gave me life and my body when I was born.  You gave my body its five senses; you furnished it with limbs and gave it is proper proportions; and you implanted in it all the instincts necessary for the welfare and safety of a living creature.  For these gifts you command me to acknowledge you and praise you and sing in honor of your name, because you are Almighty God, because you are good, and because I owe you praise for these things, even if you had done nothing else.  No one but you can do these things, because you are the one and only mould in which all things are cast and the perfect form which shapes all things, and everything takes its place according to your law.’

-  Saint Augustine; The Confessions – Book 1, chpt. 7

 

‘Tis the Season

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I have been absent from this blog for much too long.  However visiting Seattle with my family and wrapping up this school semester have kept me very busy!  When I get the chance I will share some of my pictures from Seattle and some portraits of my beautiful friend Madeleine.

Until then let me share this passage from Isaiah with you.  I always love Advent – a time for anticipating the arrival of Jesus.  Reading the prophesies about the coming of the Messiah at this time every year always fills me with such excitement, joy, and peace.  I hope this passage blesses you as much as it has blessed me.

‘A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse;

    from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him—
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of might,
the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord—
and he will delight in the fear of the Lord.

He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes,
or decide by what he hears with his ears;
but with righteousness he will judge the needy,
with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth.
He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth;
with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.
Righteousness will be his belt
and faithfulness the sash around his waist.

The wolf will live with the lamb,
the leopard will lie down with the goat,
the calf and the lion and the yearling together;
and a little child will lead them.
The cow will feed with the bear,
their young will lie down together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox.
The infant will play near the cobra’s den,
and the young child will put its hand into the viper’s nest.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,
for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea.

In that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally to him, and his resting place will be glorious.’

Isaiah 11:1 – 10

In Thanks.

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Oh Lord that lends me life,

Lend me a heart replete with thankfulness.

- William Shakespeare

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