08 October 2009

Fall shorts

Art item no. 1: The New Humanities Institute in Elektrostal is holding an international art show for young artists and art students--and you're invited to participate.

The art exhibition is on the theme "Interior Space." If it isn't possible to get your drawing, painting, graphic design, or sculpture to us physically, it might be possible to enter electronically. Let me know if you're interested! Eligible ages are high school through age 27. If you're not within that age range, maybe you can participate by thinking of someone who'd enjoy being represented in the show. The last date to receive an entry: December 10.

This gallery includes photos from a previous Institute show.
Art item no. 2: Speaking of meditative themes for art, Judy and I went to the town of Pavlovsky Posad, just east of Elektrostal, earlier this week. We went to the exhibition center at Shirokov House, and found several wonderful exhibits. The exhibits were very different, but all had a clear spiritual dimension.

Here, for example, are paintings by Elektrostal artist Nikolai Bogomya, part of his exhibition entitled "Orthodox Muscovy."

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These paintings are by architect and dedicated alpinist Nikolai Gutov, a self-taught painter:

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One hall was dedicated to art on the theme of "The Color of Silence." From left to right: works by Vera Kalmykova, Andrei Bozin, and Sergei Yakovlev (third and fourth).

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Worship-sharing at Moscow Friends Meeting, this Sunday: Friends in the Moscow area are being called together this Sunday for a special extended worship-sharing session in place of the regular meeting for worship.

Worship-sharing is a kind of spiritual conversation conducted under the discipline of a meeting for worship. We will join together to consider what God wants to do through us. We will use some of the disciplines often associated with worship-sharing--for example, not speaking a second time until everyone has had a first opportunity to speak; speaking from one's own heart and one's own experience rather than reporting what others not present might have said; and resisting the temptation to challenge "wrong" information or interpretations made during the meeting (realizing that such contributions, even when not objectively perfect, give valuable insight into the speaker's situation).

If you cannot be present, you're invited to hold us in prayer. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. Moscow time. My own particular prayer is that the tensions of the past can be healed in favor of a new commitment toward being in God's will.
George F. Will in Moscow: Well, perhaps not the man himself, but his words....

All over town, the electoral commission of the city of Moscow has put up posters advertising the municipal council elections scheduled for Sunday. On a subway escalator wall I saw a get-out-the-vote poster quoting Will as saying (retranslated), "Elections don't decide the course of events. Elections decide who decides the course of events."
A Speaking Truth sampler: SpeakingTruth.org has LOTS of media resources by and about Quakers. We feature audio, video and graphics that are interesting to those who want to learn about Quakers and for those already connected with Friends. Think of us as the "YouTube" of Quakers - you can visit to find Quaker materials, or sign up on the site and add your own media to the collection.
We've got youth videos, some funny, some serious, some connected with Quaker Schools and some by individuals. Check out The Llama Report a hilarious youth video from Barberton Evangelical Friends Church.
There's plenty of Quaker music on our site, both video and audio. You can hear Holy Spirit Come, by Aaron Fowler, which was inspired by YouthQuake, Pray for Peace by Derek Lamson or an interview with Quaker musician Susan Stark.
There are all kinds of presentations, interviews and sermons like Bob Schmitt's FGC Bible audio recordings or the Introduction to Quakers by the Advancement and Outreach Committee of Baltimore Yearly Meeting. There are Visual Arts too, some with humor, like these posters from Olympic View Friends Church and Eau Claire Friends Meeting or editorial cartoons by Signe Wilkinson on Passing Positive Values.
Visit SpeakingTruth.org to learn, be amused, find Quaker media resources or share your own.

[This text is from the site itself.]

More righteous links:

Spotlighted on Sean's Russia Blog: a lecture tomorrow on postcolonial theory and postsoviet culture.

Why do we bother getting up in the morning?

Cherice writes an open letter to all worship leaders concerning inclusive language.

To publish or not to publish a heartbreaking photo? Anguished words from some of those affected, including the photographer.

Also in the New York Times: In Afghanistan, the difference between 'we must' and 'we can'." These words struck me as weak reasoning: "What if the fall of Kabul would constitute not only an American abandonment of the Afghan people, but a major strategic and psychological triumph for Al Qaeda, and a recruiting tool of unparalleled value? Then the Kennanite calculus would no longer apply, and the fact that nobody can be completely confident that General McChrystal’s counterinsurgency strategy will work would not be reason enough to forsake it." What if this "what if" is strictly of our own definition? Do we not have other tools than warfare, other benchmarks than scoresheets of cities, to define "abandonment" and "triumph"? Isn't the struggle against our self-proclaimed enemies already far too fluid to be defined geographically? Most of all, I yearn for a systemic overhaul of the way the USA behaves as world citizens. "Enemies" will always arise--for the foreseeable future, anyway--simply from the many worldwide ways we satisfy our national appetite, aside from any other factors and contingencies. How do "we" (the USA? the West? some entirely new configuration?) learn to take up the right amount of space in this world, while dealing honestly with those who think, rightly or wrongly, that we're taking up too much space?

Theological reflections on the Coen brothers and their films.

Stories of confession and grace: Anne Jackson's Permission to Speak Freely site.

Stacie Collins! This is not the sweet stuff, this is raw blues.

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