The arts are not a peripheral luxury for the elite few, but a central necessity, how a civilization is to be deﬁned, and how our humanity is to be restored.
…If we do not teach our children and ourselves what we imagine and hope for, if we do not seek to define that elusive “world that ought to be,” then the culture of cynicism will define it for us. We are awash in apathy and terror. Thus to create in those waters, we must have more than an optimist’s escapism. Today, to create is to hope. To create is to live.
…The best of the arts, then, probe through our senses to the “memory and desire,” hovering between life and death, despair and hope. And yet, the best of the arts also point to, or even re-deﬁne, the World to come, causing us to rise up, like Lazarus, from the dark tomb of cynicism and despair.
…With all solid notions being washed away, as new fears of our days creep into our consciousness, we must insist on reminding people that there is a Stage behind the stage, a Reality behind the reality. But instead of reminding people of the cold earth, we need to awaken the deposit of what is to come. There is a banquet waiting for us beyond the veil.
…I am convinced that art and music, while not the Thing itself, contain the aroma, the actual aroma, of the New. Artists, whether cognizant of Christ or not, detect this aroma.
…That is how we must now love the world. Step into the receding (cultural) waters ﬁlled with poison, but do it with faith. Then the stench of death will be replaced by the aroma of the New. The Stage behind the stage will open up, and instead of being forced to surrender to the cold earth, we will dance upon the waters, hear new sounds, and create new colors.