The Potter and The Clay

What do you experience as you watch this mediation?

My experience last week at the Grünewald Guild inspired me to create this video as my final project for my Gospel and Global Media Cultures course.  I was invited to participate in the annual raku pottery firing.  I love the look of raku pottery.  It is astonishingly beautiful.  Now though!  I have a deep respect and amazement for the process that creates that beauty.

This raku was fired in an outdoor kiln which seemed incredibly hot to me.  Then taken with tongs and placed or dropped or tossed into a garbage can filled with local pine needles.  The lid is securely fixed to the top of the can to limit the oxygen for the fire to what is within the can.  The fire sucks the oxygen out of the glaze on the pots and the remaining metals react with elements in the pine needles to create the fabulous colors that make raku famous.

Watching this process, even participating in it, created an experience of immersion in theological metaphors in me.  I am still mining the depths of these revelations.  What is resounding for me now is the relational implications of “the potter” in this process.  So many people working together to make this beautiful pottery, I believe, can represent something of an idea of the trinitarian nature of God.  Like all metaphors it has it’s limits too.  It doesn’t represent everything of Trinity.  For example, there is definitely a “lead” potter in this film.  Still the process was so different from what I have imagined my entire life  the metaphor of God as potter would look like.  I am deeply struck with the change.

I was so touched I wanted to share something of the experience with you.  So I really do want to know… what is your experience?



2 thoughts on “The Potter and The Clay

  1. MysticMuse

    In class I couldn’t help but notice the first face I saw was of the older woman in the doorway, which to me seemed as though God as woman was welcoming me into her creation!

  2. Marshan Goodwin-Moultry

    This video was impactful for me on a multitude of levels. I also see a Trinitarian perspective in the pottery making process. I see the hands that form the clay into the desired shape. I see the firing and purification of the clay and I see the transformation of the clay as it embodies a new shell. In addition, I found the pottery so striking because of the straw that it is thrown into that gives it that reflective quality. I also appreciate the great time that it took. I believe that time of community with the other pottery makers would have been so rich. I must say I am a little jealous…LOL!!! Beautiful work!!


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