In the desert, summertime is not always pleasant. Fact is, it gets - and stays - hotter than hell. But most of us humanoids stay comfortable, thanks to air-conditioned almost everything.
But the reality of the matter is that the heat going on outside is what the desert is all about. There is a dignity and a ruggedness about it. It is a wonder.
I've been a lover of clay for decades now. The house is full of my pots and those of potters I have admired for years. About 4 years ago, I sold my wheel, my kilns, my extruder, most of my tools and books, the clay , the chemicals - the whole catastrophe. Reason was we were preparing to downsize our housing and I knew that the clay had to go. It was not a happy sacrifice, but one can't maintain a potting studio in a small space.
But I missed it - terribly.
So I decided a few months ago that I had to get back into the clay scene on a much modified basis. I found a used wheel and set it up in my garage. Then I dug through stuff and found a few tools and books that I couldn't bear to part with back then. Finally I joined the local clay center and was elected to the Education committee today. To sharpen and improve my skills I signed up for a class in "Advanced Wheel Throwing" which begins next Tuesday and am preparing a class that I'll be teaching next fall. Am calling it "Zen and the Spirit of Clay."
Don't know for sure why I'm sharing it here and now, except I find it all very fulfilling and my cup seems to be runnething over.
Wabi Sabi is a Japanese aesthetic that has appealed to me - no, called to me - in my pottery, photography and theology. It can be roughly summarized in these words:
Wabi-sabi is a beauty in things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete.
It is a beauty in things modest, worn and humble.
It is a beauty in things earthy, wild and unconventional.
It is a perfect description of Jesus. It catches images of beauty in unexpected places and things.