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    XX. GIFTS  84" x 48"   1985    
   

XX. This picture symbolizes the fulfillment of the promise, "Seek first the kingdom of heaven within, and the rest shall be added unto you." The acceptance of the promise, and the understanding of the principle behind it (best summed up in John XV: 1 - 8) would go a long way towards abolishing poverty and starvation from the face of the Earth. As it is, most of us believe that we are subject to the whims of the economy. Fearing what it may or may not do to us, we treat the economy as though it were a god. There is nothing new in this. It is simply a new form of idolatry, for the economy is the modern equivalent of a golden calf, its adherents idolators whether they like it or not.

Material lack may have sparked my own quest, but the fact remains that little or no progress can be made if one's goal is merely to achieve material well-being; the kingdom must be sought for its own sake - "the rest" follows. Or does it? Can the promise really be taken literally? Considering the totally haphazard nature of an artist's income, I have been in a good position to prove - at least to my own satisfaction - that "the rest" is indeed "added." This being so, I would suggest that the Quest presents a practical solution - perhaps the only practical solution - to the problems of poverty and starvation generally. So, bearing in mind that the Quest is a journey that can only be taken by individuals, what hope is there of solving those problems universally?

Many people feel that, as a race, we have reached an impasse, a cul-de-sac, which means that the way is blocked and there appears to be no way out - in other words they feel roadless - and I have no doubt that the Gnostics were right when they suggest that this feeling of roadlessness indicates a person's readiness for the Quest. Since more people than ever before are suffering from this feeling, it follows that more people than ever are ready for the Quest. Many have already begun. Indeed there is hope.

   
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