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May 22, 2011

Are Christians Really So Rare?

Mary, Jesus's mom, "Returning the Nails" to the government after the crusafixion.
A Florida catholic parishioner requested a mass be said today to pray for Osama bin Laden. Prayers are often said for the dead, so that's no surprise. What's so remarkable about it is that it made national headlines! At a moment when gloating over the death of our enemy is a national obsession it feels wrong to give bin Laden any respect. But this is exactly what Jesus tried to get across to us in saying "pray for those who persecute you": no one is on the outside! That one man following Jesus' admonition makes even an eyebrow twitch– let alone garnering national headlines– makes me sad for the state of the faith.

Forgiveness is the most transformative act a person can undertake. That it's perhaps the most difficult stands to reason. It's also one of the distinguishing factors that separates Christianity from other religions. So you would think that in a very Christian nation, and especially the home of so many rabidly self-proclaiming Christians, forgiveness would be the very first order of business, wielded with shameless pride. BUT WE'RE NOT EVEN TALKING ABOUT THAT! I'm talking about the simple act of praying for a bad guy (who is still one of God's children).

If real Christians can't follow their own "beliefs" then at the very least I hope non-Christians are smart enough to be able to tell the real followers of Jesus from those who just like the brand name.  Hey, maybe the rapture DID happen but nobody noticed because nobody qualified!
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Tim Holmes Studio

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I'm a sculptor/filmmaker living in Montana, USA. I am using art to move the evolution of humanity forward into an increasingly responsive, inclusive and interactive culture. As globalization flattens peoples into a capitalist monoculture I hope to use my art to celebrate historical cultural differences and imagine how we can co-create a rich future together.

I see myself as an artist/philosopher laboring deep in the mines of joy. I've had a good long career of exhibiting work around the world and working on international outreach projects, most notably being the first American to be invited to present a one-person exhibit in the Hermitage Museum. Recently I have turned my attention from simply making metal sculpture to creating films and workshops for engaging communities directly, tinkering with the very ideas and mechanisms behind cultural transformation. I feel that as we face tragic world crises, if the human species favors our imaginative and creative capacities we can cultivate a rich world to enjoy.

For me the deepest satisfaction in making art comes in engaging people's real life concerns rather than providing simple entertainment or decoration. Areas of conflict or tension are particularly ripe for the kind of transformative power that art uniquely carries. I invite any kind of challenge that serves people on a deep level.