Understanding through The arts
Leonardo Z. Legaspi. O. P.
* Discussion of the type
Essay – it explains the impression or point of view of the author. Formal Essay – it has a serious and important topic.
This essay (Understanding through the arts) is the foreword to a special issue of Unitas, a U.S.T. journal dealing with the subject of the search for national identity through the arts.
* Explanation or synopsis
We are today going through a crucial but exciting period in our history. We are engaged in the difficult adventure of shaping our nation’s identity. Because of this, all the resources of our people should be mobilized. And arts are the most important solution in this search. Through art, we get evidence of how our ancestors lived and died. Art knows no diversity of language since it speaks directly to the senses so even we encounter language barrier, understanding can be more easily reached. Through art, we gain a notion of how the different races and cultures operated: though art, we become more receptive to their ideas. The moment we realize that the differences are genuine, we make an important step toward understanding our fellowmen. The auditive and visual arts are important too, it penetrate the intelligence and the sensitiveness of the spectator or listener because it help us become acquainted with each other or to get intuitive knowledge of one another.
But art has its glorious mission; it is to promote unity, harmony and peace. It should not weigh down the soul and nail it to the earth. Rather, art should lend wings to the soul so that it can rise above its importance and insignificant. And get us to God because God is the only union that counts. Only in this way can the splendid vision of St. Paul be literally realized. “For the invisible things of him, from the world, are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made: his eternal power also, and divinity.” This means that God knows everything....
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