Tuesday, January 5, 2010
The Fiery Bush.
It wasn't really as red as this, but the dramatic colours drew me out of the house to take advantage of the light. As usual the light disappeared inside a few minutes. I resorted to Photo shop to give a very pleasing array of colour. It reminded me of the Burning Bush which since a child has always fascinated me. How can you have a burning bush? What could it possibly look like? Various TV representations in the story of Exodus have made attempts, none of them convincing. It's a bit of a side issue but the original spelling of the title was probably firy, but could have been confused with fir trees. In Middle English the letters would all have been pronounced, so fiery was the one that stuck. That strikes as correct, because I can hear it. The Burning Bush was clearly a metaphor, yet there is a belief that the burning bush continues to exist at St Catherine's Monastery at the foot of Mt Sinai - and like Moses, visitors have to take off their sandals before approaching. Critics say that it was not the bush but Mount Sinai which was burning. They say that seneh, Hebrew for brambles, was a copyist error for Sinai. This makes no difference to its symbolic adoption by the Church of Scotland and the Presbyterian Church of Ireland. In the latter case, Ardens sed virens (burning but flourishing) is the church motto. In Jungian terms, the burning bush is one of a number of "calls from a mysterious source". This happens when old life values have lost their potency and been replaced by a kind of sterility. The call of the mysterious object awakens the individual to some special destiny and is instrumental in changing their path.