Thursday, June 7, 2007

Religion, an art experience?

In the last few years I've begun to think that religion is an "art experience". I've spent a lot of time musing on art, and have had what I interpreted as religious experiences from interacting with art. For example, the so-called Venus of Willendorf. This female figurine has been interpreted as a "goddess", however as archaeologists recognise, there is nothing about her which tells us that she is indeed a goddess. So the best we can say is that she is a female figurine. I have, however, related to her as a goddess (before I'd heard what archaeologists said about her), and my relating seemed to be effective. Am I having an art experience then, or a religious experience? Would I say that my 'UPG' (unsubstantiated personal gnosis) was valid for everyone and that she is indeed a goddess, just because I thought she was one and related to her that way? I am undecided. Was I relating to something else, something inside or outside my own head, and I thought it was somehow connected to this figurine? I don't know.

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