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Thursday, 3 March 2011

Religious beliefs

are a hard subject to blog about........well for me they are......people tend to have strong views about them and the last thing I want to do is upset people......but I have been thinking about this a lot lately ........so here goes with a page I have been working on recently.........


 I seem to spend a lot of time in churches where ever I go.....I find them fascinating/beautiful/awe inspiring/spooky/creepy......but sometimes it makes me feel a little hypocritical.........

 These images were taken from some magazines and leaflets I picked up in the PUGIN church I visited recently...............

so......do you have to believe in something to be interested in it?.......I don't neccesarily think so.......

I leave it up to you if you want to comment......I'm not looking to be provocative or to promote any great discussion but ...........

17 comments:

Sarah said...

Snap!

My other half said to me the other week “for a fully paid up agnostic, you don’t half spend a lot of time in churches!” :)

I adore religious imagery, it’s powerful, beautiful, literally awe inspiring (after all, that’s kind of the point!), and at its best, nicely creepy.

I’ve had this fascination from an early age, at 13 I won a competition at the local photography club with a series of graveyard angel photos, and they are still one of my favourite things to photograph. I also LOVE stained glass, I’d have my house completely re-glazed in it if I won the lottery :)

Whenever we go anywhere new, the kids know they will have to visit “ABC” (another bloody cathedral lol) and a few old churches to boot. Yet none of us are in the slightest bit religious. I have taught them, however, to be quiet on our visits and very respectful of those who are there in a religious capacity.

Do I feel like a hypocrite? No, not really, I think these wonderful buildings are there for us all to enjoy. Although I do sometimes wonder what it is that draws me to the “trappings” of religion, when the basis of it doesn’t interest me.

Sarah said...

I’ve just realised I used virtually the exact same adjectives as you – awe inspiring, creepy, beautiful….

Bernice said...

I'm the other way round!! I am firmly a Christian but really don't like going into the sorts of churches you like. I love Pugin's style and would visit a church to see his work but basically don't like all the ornate stuff and the stained glass windows. To me church is the people not the building! Each to their own! Love your journal page

Anesha said...

I am a Christian but don't like all the imagery in churches. I admire the artist for their skill and the beauty of their work but think that the money should have been spent to help people not decorate buildings. :) At the end of the day we are who we are. Hugs Anesha

Deborah said...

I'm a total heathen but I love religious imagery and church architecture purely from an aesthetic point of view. I don't see a conflict at all as long as one is respectful of the people who are worshiping there. And after all, it plays a huge part in our history. Gorgeous page btw.

Cheryl said...

oh hun,your pages are just so inspiring,I just love the,stained glass windows,in churches,and all,the delicate,images,that you can sometimes see i am like you,things are erry,creepy yet somehow so powerful in there own,way,hugs cheryl xxxx

Phoenix Peacock said...

I dont think it is hypocritical at all. Depending on the time period I love a lot of Chrisitian art. Also depending on the time period it is difficult to find anything that wasn't paid for by the church!
I also love art of other religions too. Maybe it is the devotion of the artist and the power of their work that I so enjoy?

Carol Q said...

interesting comments so far Sue. again - me a completely irreligious person loves and admires the architecture, craftsmenship and artistry that has gone into these buildings.

Gini said...

Thank you so much for the welcome Sue, I really appreciate it.
I don't think there is anyone on this planet who is not hypocritical about something, we all are to one degree or another.
You're enjoying art in all it's forms by visiting religious establishments, they are generally artistic places.
If you have ever broken the speed limit would that also mean you couldn't go in a police station?
Just voicing a different perspective on it all.
Always love your art Sue!
Gini
xx

Barb Cady said...

Beautiful pages Sue. Faith is something very hard to define, but for me it is something that moves my soul. Art does that for me too,and I think that is why it is so important in our lives. I collect those lovely painted wooden crosses you can buy when you visit a large church, got quite a collection now, your post today has inspired me to try and think of how to record them in my work. Thank you for a wonderful post.

Nigel said...

My only worry with churches is that I may burst into flames as I step through the door ;)
Although I don't follow any of the major religions, I can still appreciate spiritual places. I love the old abbeys at Glastonbury, Whitby and so on, and even though they have been ravaged by time and man, they still exude a sense of tranquillity and peace. I can admire the graceful lines of a minaret at a mosque, or the great domes of the orthodox churches.
Do I feel hypocritical? No. If we can't admire a church for it's beauty, then we may as well concrete over Stonehenge.

Rosie said...

Well, as you probably know from visiting my blog, I AM a believer and I love this page. It seems to me that all kinds of people visit churches, but that the one thing they have in common is an appreciation of the stillness and peace to be found there. Bit worried about the "creepy" description though ....!!

Piddawinkle said...

no offense taken, your page is beautiful, churches are as you said many things to many people, :)

Tasha said...

Such a beautiful page! I love the pictures you used - beautiful.
I dont think churches are just about belief, they are full of wonderful architecture and art. It would be a shame if the only people who got to see that were us believers.
If you havent been already you so need to head to Rome, ack love it!
love tasha xx

Jo Capper-Sandon said...

I love the feeling you get when you walk into churches and cathedrals, and the shapes, lighting and colours are always dramatic. Have you ever visited the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona? being one of the first through the doors there in the morning is incredible.I enjoy your church images Sue.

lynne.phelps said...

After living in Italy for four years as a teenager, I love churches and religious art. My gosh I would love to see Petra! I was more analytical in my beliefs, perhaps a cynical Christian would be a good description. Working in geology and geophysics for 25 years makes me a firm believer in chronological sedimentation, lol!!! But I have always been so amazed at creation that it is easy to believe in a creator. If God created the tiniest sub-atomic particle, invested it with properties and flung it out into the ether such that stars coalesced, heavier elements formed, planets were created and man emerged from the ooze. . . I see God in that too! But I was with my mother as she died, and had a very profound experience that has started me on my own walk of faith and it has been immensely rewarding. Beliefs are very personal and they evolve in their own season. Tolerance is also something I believe in, and respect for other systems of belief.

Carol Browne said...

I love visiting churches - and I love that quiet peacefulness inside. I love learning about the different rituals, but never feel compelled to join a church at all. I just appreciate them. I feel the same way about graveyards, too.