Staring Blindly at the Reflection of God

While Handel was composing the famous Hallelujah Chorus of the Messiah, he was reported to have said "I have seen the face of God" (reference 1).

Handel was able to see God's face (or rather, God's reflection) in what he was doing, as a moment of revelation where God allowed a brief glimpse of Himself.

The reason I say "reflection" is that staring directly at God would most likely be too much for us. To use a secular analogy, it would be much like looking directly at the basilisk in the Harry Potter books. Our human bodies could not handle it.  Instead I believe a reflection? transformation? - a glimpse of God taken sideways through another lens (nature, music, art, science, love, and so on) is the closest we can get to seeing God in this world and still live in it. Continuing with our analogy, this is much like seeking the basilisk of Harry Potter by looking in mirrors and reflections so as not to happen upon it in deadly full face.

Handel had the fortune to see this rare and precious glimpse of God's reflection within the music he was composing.  However, some other men have not recognized God's reflection, even when they have literally been staring at it.

This is seen frequently in the sciences.  My husband and I were watching a DVD lecture series by a prominent scientist.  This scientist marveled openly at the beauty and complexity of the natural world.  During the series however, he was making negative comments about religion, and I suspect this was because he believed there was not sufficient evidence for him to believe in religion.  He was just stating what he thought was true, based on his observations.

Yet this man, this scholar, has seen further than most.  His sharp mind grasps the most complex of topics.  On top of that, he has a true gift for teaching - he can distill the most abstract and difficult of ideas and express them in a way that an everyday man or woman can understand.

Despite seeing further than most, this unusually gifted man has not seen what is right in front of him when he speaks: the reflection of God seen in the lens of world around us.  Every day this man marvels at the world we live in and how it fits together.  He is staring, some might say, at a reflection  - a tiny glimpse - of God.  But unlike Handel, he does not recognize this for what it is.

In truth, this man has indeed seen further than most.  But his real danger is not that he has seen too much.  It is that he has not seen far enough.

Cited sources:
1. "George Frederic Handel and the Story of the Hallelujah Chorus" on Daily Piano Tips

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