A certain father Johnathan was quoted as saying, “there is no meaningful correspondence between what we are like in our souls, and what happens to us in life”.

The challenge of the soul, then, is to shape itself regardless of the circumstances in life. We must, therefore, ever take a deeper look at ourselves, examine the shape of the soul and shape it to justice according to the teachings and commandments of Christ, through whom the Father, and by the Holy Spirit.

Writing on paper could also be the instrument by which we aid the soul in its purpose in life, which is to maintain a sharp focus on what is important, body and soul working together, building true wealth which is sharing in the light of the glory of God.
It is hard to emphasize it too much, the importance of body and soul working together. This is why we have prayer, spoken prayer – Lord move my lips and my mouth will announce your praises –, chanting – he who sings prays twice –, and why we pursue art, whether it be painting icons or writing about our spiritual lives, not only for the purpose of shaping our own souls to justice, but hopefully, somehow, also for the benefit of others, so that by sharing my struggle I may aid you in your struggle.

There may be an analogy between the struggle to shape my soul to justice and the struggle to shape the head of the point of this pencil as I write, in such a way that I achieve an aesthetically pleasing appearance for these words and lines on the paper. And so, in this sense, this physical art should not be taken lightly, yet consideration of it should not be taken too far either. For, to a certain extent, the good order in which I write also reflects the extent to which I shape my soul to justice, but it would be a sin if I were to concentrate on this aspect so much that I neglect the more important discipline in my attempt to cultivate the fruits of the Holy Spirit. But the exercise has served another purpose: to show how important it is for the body and soul to work together, while at the same time how easy it may be to fall into the sin of idolatry. Yet this too we can avoid by changing our minds, repentance, by focusing our minds on what is really important.

And just what is the shape of your soul, oh man? Shape it to justice!

And so the meaning of our art should also be to shape the soul to justice, first by figuring out, literally, what shape it is in, even by pencil-written lines on a sheet of paper, and then fashioning it in the image and likeness of the true master, our true God and Lord Jesus Christ.

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