Well this is a slightly different post to usual. But since it’s Easter, I thought I’d actually talk about Jesus!
So I’m basically going to talk about Jesus via a painting that we have in our house. It’s the Transfiguration by Raphael. I’ll admit that this is a slightly random print to have, especially for non-religious people, but we do have our reasons. Here it is:
I love this painting. We first saw the Transfiguration when my wife and I went to Rome. It was our first holiday abroad together as just the two of us and, like most people do in Rome, we made a trip to the Vatican. Sitting there and seeing the full size version of this was awesome. It helped spark a passion of Roman history, and also of Renaissance artwork. Having it hung in our house now reminds us of that time away together. And not just of Rome, but travelling in general.
Not only is it a spectacular work of art, but there’s more to it than that. For me, it’s the metaphor that it represents.
We all interpret art differently, but to me this is the dichotomy of the human existence. A metaphorical representation of our internal struggle between what we could allow our mind to be, and what we want it to be.
Above, you have Jesus, the metaphorical pinup of the ideal person. Everything everyone strives to be. Whether that’s being in a calm, relaxed state; being good and helpful to others; or however you deem the ideal version of yourself to be. And below, you have the everything that we try to avoid: anger, darkness, depression, chaos and all the negativity in our lives.
More often than not, we find ourselves floating between the two and quite often being somewhere in the middle.
What Jesus Means to Me
I don’t necessarily believe in Jesus as the son of God, but I believe in Jesus as a metaphor and perhaps as a vague term for a spiritual guide.
I’m not religious. But that doesn’t mean I can’t have some sort of connection to Jesus. Maybe my version of Jesus isn’t the same as the Christian one, but we’re all entitled to have our own view on what Jesus means. Here’s Isabelle, pointing to Jesus for some reason.
I also jokingly use Jesus as the name I assign to my ‘spiritual guide.’ I don’t actually believe I have a spiritual guide, but whenever something in my life seemingly requires something outside of my control, I say “Jesus will sort it out.” Of course, I’m joking when I say this. But coincidentally, things usually work out when I need them to.
Being Helped by ‘Jesus’
When we were moving house, we lost the house we wanted just as we agreed a sale on our house. We were devastated. There was nothing else we wanted and we thought we’d just have to cancel the sale. I said to my wife “Jesus will sort it out” and the very next day a new house had been listed that couldn’t have been more perfect. 8 hours after being listed, our offer had been accepted. I’m not saying Jesus helped out, but it would’ve been almost impossible for things to have gone any better than they did.
Then my wife got pregnant, and we both really wanted a girl. After all, we’ve had Isabelle’s named picked out since 2011. Before the scan I said “Jesus will sort it out” and yet again, it worked. The scan showed we were having a girl. Was it some spirit looking out for me? I very much doubt it. But I still like to ask Jesus when it comes to moments like this. Even if it makes absolutely no difference.
So the Transfiguration means a lot to me. It represents my long lasting struggles with depression. How I’m usually flicking between two diametrically opposed states of mind. Constantly trying to avoid the darkness and strive towards being metaphorically more like ‘Jesus’. It represents the time I’ve spent travelling with my wife, and now with Isabelle. And most of all, it represents the fact that no matter how bad things are getting, or if there’s ever a time I need a helping hand, Jesus will be there to sort it out.