the sacred gaze
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The Sacred Gaze by David Morgan
"Sacred gaze" denotes any way of seeing that invests its object—an image, a person, a time, a place—with spiritual significance. Drawing from many different fields, David Morgan investigates key aspects of vision and imagery in a variety of religious traditions. His lively, innovative book explores how viewers absorb and process religious imagery and how their experience contributes to the social, intellectual, and perceptual construction of reality. Ranging widely from thirteenth-century Japan and eighteenth-century Tibet to contemporary America, Thailand, and Africa, The Sacred Gaze discusses the religious functions of images and the tools viewers use to interpret them. Morgan questions how fear and disgust of images relate to one another and explains how scholars study the long and evolving histories of images as they pass from culture to culture. An intriguing strand of the narrative details how images have helped to shape popular conceptions of gender and masculinity. The opening chapter considers definitions of "visual culture" and how these relate to the traditional practice of art history. Amply illustrated with more than seventy images from diverse religious traditions, this masterful interdisciplinary study provides a comprehensive and accessible resource for everyone interested in how religious images and visual practice order space and time, communicate with the transcendent, and embody forms of communion with the divine. The Sacred Gaze is a vital introduction to the study of the visual culture of religions.
The Sacred Gaze by Susan R. Pitchford
Eight hundred years ago, Clare of Assisi advised a correspondent to gaze into the mirror of the crucified Christ and study her own face within it. A hundred years ago, sociologist Charles Horton Cooley said we can know our self only as it is reflected to us by others. Contemplation is the choice to find our reflection in the divine Mirror. In The Sacred Gaze, Susan Pitchford explores how a false self is created by distortions in the mirrors around us. Drawing from the mystical and sociological traditions, and with practical suggestions for how to begin, Pitchford shows how gazing into the face of Christ can reveal to us who we really are. When the true self is known, and known as God’s beloved, the way is opened to radical freedom and joy.
The Dark Gaze by Kevin Hart
Maurice Blanchot is among the most important twentieth-century French thinkers. Figures such as Bataille, Deleuze, Derrida, and Levinas all draw deeply on his novels and writings on literature and philosophy. In The Dark Gaze, Kevin Hart argues that Blanchot has given us the most persuasive account of what we must give up—whether it be continuity, selfhood, absolute truth, totality, or unity—if God is, indeed, dead. Looking at Blanchot’s oeuvre as a whole, Hart shows that this erstwhile atheist paradoxically had an abiding fascination with mystical experiences and the notion of the sacred. The result is not a mere introduction to Blanchot but rather a profound reconsideration of how his work figures theologically in some of the major currents of twentieth-century thought. Hart reveals Blanchot to be a thinker devoted to the possibilities of a spiritual life; an atheist who knew both the Old and New Testaments, especially the Hebrew Bible; and a philosopher keenly interested in the relation between art and religion, the nature of mystical experience, the link between writing and the sacred, and the possibilities of leading an ethical life in the absence of God.
The Sacred And The Cinema by Sheila J. Nayar
For more than half a century now, scholars have debated over what comprises a 'genuinely' religious film-one that evinces an 'authentic' manifestation of the sacred. Often these scholars do so by pitting the 'successful' films against those which propagate an inauthentic spiritual experience-with the biblical spectacular serving as their most notorious candidate. This book argues that what makes a filmic manifestation of the sacred true or authentic may say more about a spectator or critic's particular way of knowing, as influenced by alphabetic literacy, than it does about the aesthetic or philosophical-and sometimes even faith-based-dimensions of the sacred onscreen. Engaging with everything from Hollywood religious spectaculars, Hindu mythologicals, and an international array of films revered for their 'transcendental style,' The Sacred and the Cinema unveils the epistemic pressures at the heart of engaging with the sacred onscreen. The book also provides a valuable summation of the history of the sacred as a field of study, particularly as that field intersects with film.
Francesca Woodman S Dark Gaze by Claire Raymond
Focusing on the later work of the American photographer Francesca Woodman (1958-1981), Claire Raymond takes up the question of the disintegrative condition of the art she produced in the last year of her life. Departing from the techniques of her earlier compositions, Woodman worked in the diazotype process for many of these late pieces, most importantly the monumental Blueprint for a Temple. Raymond shows that through her use of diazotype, a medium that breaks down when exposed to light, Woodman created art that is both supremely evocative aesthetically and inherently unstable physically. Woodman, Raymond contends, was imaginatively responding to the end of the durable image, a historical reality acknowledged in the way her work plays the ephemeral and evanescent against the monumental and enduring. Raymond focuses on the theoretical and the curatorial issues surrounding Woodman's diazotypes, a thematic and practical distress that haunts much of her later art, especially the artist's book and photo series Some Disordered Interior Geometries and Portrait of a Reputation. Rather than conceiving of Woodman herself as fragile, an artist chronicling and seeming to yearn for her own disappearance, Raymond juxtaposes Woodman's career-spanning documentation of her own image against other post-war witnesses of trauma - an artist standing in the museum ruins where she emerges most distinctly as a figure of postmodernity.
The Better Part by Thomas Keating
The "better part," of course, is that chosen by the introspective Mary of Bethany in the New Testament story, whose experience has long been taken by the contemplative religious. Father Keating, leader of the Centering Prayer movement, understands the contemplative and prayerful life as a form of participation in the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus, and his book is both a graceful description of that life and a how-to.
Senses Of The Soul by William A. Dyrness
Senses of the Soul explores the way art and visual elements are incorporated into Christian worship. It incorporates research conducted in Los Angeles congregations. Through extensive interviews in a sample of Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox congregations it looks into the way visual elements actually become part of the experience of worship. By looking at attitudes and experiences of beauty, art, and memories, it suggests that believers appropriate images and aesthetic encounters in terms of imaginative structures that have been formed through worship practices over time. By comparing responses across denominations, the book proposes that people receive visual elements in ways that have been shaped by long traditions and specific background beliefs. In addition to discussions of the differences between the major Christian traditions, the book also examines the relation of art and beauty to worship, the role of memories and everyday life, and the power of images in spirituality and worship. By its focus on the worshiper, the book seeks to make a contribution to the growing conversation between the arts and Christian worship and to the process of worship renewal.
The Editorial Gaze by Paul Eggert
First published in 1998. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.
Walking Where Jesus Walked by Hillary Kaell
Since the 1950s, millions of American Christians have traveled to the Holy Land to visit places in Israel and the Palestinian territories associated with Jesus’s life and death. Why do these pilgrims choose to journey halfway around the world? How do they react to what they encounter, and how do they understand the trip upon return? This book places the answers to these questions into the context of broad historical trends, analyzing how the growth of mass-market evangelical and Catholic pilgrimage relates to changes in American Christian theology and culture over the last sixty years, including shifts in Jewish-Christian relations, the growth of small group spirituality, and the development of a Christian leisure industry. Drawing on five years of research with pilgrims before, during and after their trips, Walking Where Jesus Walked offers a lived religion approach that explores the trip’s hybrid nature for pilgrims themselves: both ordinary—tied to their everyday role as the family’s ritual specialists, and extraordinary—since they leave home in a dramatic way, often for the first time. Their experiences illuminate key tensions in contemporary US Christianity between material evidence and transcendent divinity, commoditization and religious authority, domestic relationships and global experience. Hillary Kaell crafts the first in-depth study of the cultural and religious significance of American Holy Land pilgrimage after 1948. The result sheds light on how Christian pilgrims, especially women, make sense of their experience in Israel-Palestine, offering an important complement to top-down approaches in studies of Christian Zionism and foreign policy.
The Gaze Of The West And Framings Of The East by S. Nair-Venugopal
This volume explores Western attitudes towards the phenomenon of Easternization, drawing upon Eastern perspectives and examining the impact upon contemporary culture to argue that Easternization is another type of globalization.