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Alter and Ceiling, St. Joseph's, Bronx, NY 2002

Considering that I never believed in God -- at least not the God which is pictured as an old bearded guy looking down on the follies of the world he created. Nothing makes sense to me about organized religion. Not the hierarchy of clergy, nor the belief that some people have a direct line to God.

But rather than being disparaging about other's religions, I've always been drawn to them -- sort of like Houdini -- wondering how the trick is done. And I'm familiar with all the arguments stating that God is not responsible for the evils of the world, and he's given us free choice and all that, but there are certain events, the extermination of Jews in concentration camps, just to take one example, that make the belief in a benevolent creator impossible for me.

However, I am certainly willing to admit that there are things about this world that are beyond rational comprehension and I have a certain envy of those who are able to believe in a life beyond this one. It can be a great comfort.

I think that there are two types of religious experiences: the organized religion that we are all familiar wtih, and the shamanistic variety where some guy goes out into the desert and disorders his senses in some way, and has visions, and returns to the tribe with the story of his experiences. This is sometimes, what I feel that photography is for me.

 

I offer several Bronx photographs as Note Cards here

All photography copyright Dave Beckerman.