Spring Is Back, And So Are The Spring Nymphs!

A lovely nymph appears during the early days of spring…

Now that the vernal equinox has taken place, it is officially spring. This means, of course, that it is time for those exotic and mysterious creatures I enjoy so much, the nymphs, to emerge from their winter sleep. Finally, after a long winter, we can once again enjoy the beauty of these creatures.

Yes, the return of spring, and all its warmth and various beauty is quite delightful!

Second Sunday of Lent: The Transfiguration of Christ

The Transfiguration of Christ, by Fra Angelico.

Fra Angelico (1395-1455) was an early Italian Renaissance painter. He was also a Dominican Friar who spent his the greater part of his life in the friary of St. Marco in Florence, Italy. According to the Giorgio Vasari, who wrote a famous work on Italian Renaissance painter, The Live of the Artists, “It is impossible to bestow too much praise on this holy father, who was so humble and modest in all that he did and said and whose pictures were painted with such facility and piety.” He also said Fra Angelico painted with a “rare and perfect talent”.

The above painting is of the Transfiguration of Christ. This is told at today’s Catholic mass. Basically, it is the moment when Jesus went up to a high mountain with three of his disciples, Peter, James and John, and was “transfigured” before them. According to the Gospels, his physical appearance changed, as he “was transfigured before them; his face shining as the sun, and his garments became white as the light.” Then, a shining cloud appeared above his disciples, from which they heard a voice, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him”.  It is one of the most intriguing moments in the Gospels.

It has also been a favorite scenes of many artists. Raphael painted perhaps the most famous depiction, which I posted on a few years ago. Today’s post celebrates the painting by Fra Angelico, who, as mentioned above, was one of the most spiritual of all Renaissance artists. He has even been named as “Blessed” by Pope John Paul II in 1982, which is a mark of high sanctity and is one step removed from formal sainthood.

Fra Angelico’s paintings are wonderful depictions of the life of Christ. In their calm and simplicity, their peaceful quiet and solid beauty, they reflect the deep spiritual soul of their creator. Not only can they be enjoyed simply as nice works of art, they also can be used as aides to prayer and meditation. In many ways they are a bridge between the more traditional Byzantine, icon style paintings of medieval art, and the emerging naturalism of the Renaissance. In fact, most of his painting were done in his friary, St. Marco, and were, like most religious art, intended as spiritual aids, rather than simply as sources of aesthetic pleasure. Fra Angelico was a great influence on the next generation of Italian Renaissance painters, such as Leonardo and Raphael.

His painting may be difficult for modern eyes to understand and appreciate, but for me their beauty and sense of spiritual truth far excels so much of weirdness and ugliness that exists in most modern art.

CNN Now Means “The Cannibal News Network” After Host Reza Aslan Eats A Human Brain

CNN’s resident cannibal Reza Aslan showing his liberal enlightenment by eating a tender and tasty human brain.

This is the degeneracy to which the modern Left has now descended: an acceptance and even an embrace of cannibalism. CNN host Reza Aslan actually ate part of a human brain for a special he did on an extreme Hindu sect.

http://www.breitbart.com/big-journalism/2017/03/09/cnns-reza-aslan-faces-backlash-after-eating-part-human-brain-filming-hindu-cannibal-sect/

This is the essence of modern liberalism: accept everything, all in the name of diversity and multiculturalism, so long as it is not traditional Western Christendom. No matter how freakish, now bizarre, how barbaric, nothing is to be criticized or denounced that is non-Western, whereas anything that is traditionally Western is morally reprehensible.

There is no end to the freakish madness of the Left.

First Sunday of Lent: Jesus Tempted by Satan

Jesus tempted by Satan.

Jesus tempted by Satan.

Now the Lenten season is upon us. It is a time for prayer, fasting and almsgiving. It is a general renewal of the spiritual life in preparation for the Easter season, and the celebration of the resurrection of Christ. Although a few other Christian denominations practice some form of Lent, the Catholic and Orthodox Churches are still the place to find the full expression of the Lenten spirit.

In today’s Mass readings (Matthew 4:1-11) we hear the story of Jesus’ journey to the desert, where he fasted for forty days and nights and was tempted by Satan. The first temptation was that of food. Jesus was hungry, and Satan approached him to suggest he turn the stones into bread. Christ’s response was one of the most famous lines of the Bible: “Man does not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes forth  from the mouth of God”.

It is always good to be reminded, especially given this blog’s penchant for the celebration of physical–and in particular female–beauty, that there is more to life than simply the world around us. For me, life without the spiritual is empty indeed.

I am not sure where the painting above is from, but I find it to be a good expression of this great passage from Scripture. It also expresses well what many of us may experience went tempted by evil. There can be darkness and difficulties in life, worries and confusions, struggles and deep temptations, but in the end, as Lent reminds us, despite all this there is the ultimate hope of the resurrected Christ.

Donald Trump, Robert Mitchum and the Noir President

Robert Mitchum, one of the great figures of film noir.

Robert Mitchum, one of the great figures of film noir.

It dawned on me recently while watching Trump at a press conference with Justin Trudeaux of Canada that he has an uncanny resemblance to Robert Mitchum (1917-1997).  The contrast between the hipster Prime Minister of Canada and the grizzled Trump was striking. I thought, wow, as Trump stares down at Trudeaux, he has that same look on his face that Robert Mitchum would have in his films. In fact, in many ways Trump is the Noir President of our times. As Reagan was the embodiment of the long lost American West, the cowboy, so Trump is in many ways the embodiment of the old fashioned, and in many ways now lost, urban culture of America’s past.

Donald Trump, the noir President of the United States.

Donald Trump, the noir President of the United States.

For those who may need some reminding, Robert Mitchum was perhaps the greatest actor of the noir genre. Bogart is probably his only rival in this area. I won’t get into the details of film noir here, except to say that it often deals with dark, tough, cynical subjects, while the heros, albeit flawed, nevertheless have a certain amoral–moral compass which ultimately guides their actions. The hero of the noir is often considered an anti-hero, someone who works against and completely outside a corrupt system to seek certain forms of justice. He does not follow the standard methods of justice. Rather, he is an outsider, scorned and despised and even opposed by those within the socially acceptable structures of power, and yet his moral compass, firmly fixed on its object of just retribution, is flexible enough to maneuver its way through the most contemptible layers of a slime infested, completely corrupt society. The noir hero has serious and often debilitating personal flaws, and yet his flaws are often his advantage when dealing with and confronting the more insidious elements of society. His ruthlessness is often the best method to overcome the ruthlessness of those he confronts.

Now, this is obviously a very far flung analogy, but there is some truth to it. When I speak of Mitchum, I speak of his screen persona. What his political views were in real life is irrelevant here. It is the public, screen image that is important, the persona that is displayed to the world through film. Being a President and being a movie star are similar in many ways, the most important of which is the role that is being projected to the public, and a role that the public must enjoy and accept, and even respect, and not reject, in order for the politician or actor to be successful.

As stated above, I noticed one important similarity to Mitchum in the way Trump merely looks at people. He is tall, and tends to have air of tough, confident superiority about him. Like Mitchum, no one is bigger than Trump in his presence. Trump knows this and is not afraid to display it. In fact, he uses it to his advantage.

Mitchum in the 1947 noir classic, Out of the Past.

Mitchum in the 1947 noir classic, Out of the Past.

Another strikingly similarity between Trump and the Mitchum style of noir,  is Trump’s ability to fight back. No President has faced as much hostility as Trump. He has aligned against him, in lockstep order, the news media, Hollywood, academia, and most of big government and the Deep State. Hell, most of the elected officials in his own party even despise him.

Trump meeting with fellow power brokers.

Trump meeting with fellow power brokers.

And yet to be so despised by so many of the staid establishment is part and parcel of the noir hero. He feeds off this. It gives him strength and purpose. To be an outsider, fighting against those who simply want to uphold a corrupt criminality is what the noir hero does best. Again, the noir character works outside of the realm of the politically and socially acceptable, he breaks rules, he defies norms. He riles people up. The noir detective, as personified by Chandler’s Phillip Marlowe or Spillane’s Mike Hammer, are in constant conflict with the official organs of law enforcement, and yet they manage to do things in their own way, and achieve ultimate goal of apprehending the criminal in the end, despite how many people they may have to piss off in the process. Many people lay in the wake of the noir hero, angry, hurt, and filled with a seething hatred for his success. The crazed Left is a good example of this when it comes to Trump.

And then of course there are always the dames and the femme-fatals of noir. These are the sexy, beautiful, alluring women who are in one way or another associated with the hero. Sometimes they are his lovers and confidants, sometimes they are as innocuous as a secretary who has a thing for the man, and other times they are the seductive sirens of crime and corruption who nearly lead him astray and sometimes even destroy him.  Every good noir story has such women.

Mitchum and a noir dame.

Mitchum and a noir dame.

Trump also has a knack for surrounding himself with beautiful but sometimes dangerous women. Most often they adore him, as with Melania; at other times he gets into trouble with them, as we saw in the Access Hollywood tape. And yet no matter what the situation, Trump always seem to be in the company of beautiful women. Such is the life of a noir hero or President

Trump always surrounds himself with hot babes...

Trump always surrounds himself with hot babes…

Another similarity between Trump and Michum is the toughness factor. Trump, at least in his public persona, exudes toughness. This is backed up by his open contempt for his enemies, especially in the media. He enjoys sparring with them. He does not back down from a fight. And when he fights, he fights to win. In a typical old school New York attitude (and most noir has an urban setting), Trump does not want to take prisoners; he wants to win, and he wants to win completely and absolutely. Let’s face it: to run for a position like President requires a certain toughness; to endure the unprecedented vitriol and hatred that Trump has endured, and will endure for the remainder of his presidency, requires even that much more toughness. And this is nothing to say of the foreign enemies of the United States. Compare with this with the previous President, who exuded little more than an effete, feminine pajama boy prissiness. “Pussy” is the first word that comes to mind when any man with a pair thinks of Barack Hussein Obama. The contrast between Trump and Obama cannot be more striking.

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But what strikes me the most about the Trump and Mitchum comparison is the simple straight talking, straight forward, “I don’t give a shit” attitude towards everything. This is pure, undiluted Americana. Mitchum could convey this with one disdainful comment, with one haughty and superior glance, with one steely confrontation with an antagonist. One month into his Presidency it is clear that Trump has not been phased by the office or the experience; he is still Trump, and he will remain Trump and do what Trump does best, fighting the establishment, riling up the press, and driving menopausal feminists and sissy limp wristed leftist males insane, and he will do it on his terms. And as he does this, it is clear that he is enjoying every single moment of it. Like Mitchum in his films, there is something so unorthodox and unpredictable about Trump that we watch in fascination as he completely rewrites the political rules for being a President, the rules he himself has done more than anyone else in modern history to smash forever.

trump57

We are indeed living in fascinating and exciting times. The battle royale of the modern world, nationalism vs. globalism, has been joined, and I will say more on that in a future post.

I stand firmly with Trump on the side of nationalism.

Subtle Eroticism

beauty306

The other day I saw two different sights: one was of a girl dressed in a pair of jean shorts which barely covered the bottom of her ass. Although enticing, the display of a girl’s butt hanging out of her shorts seems a bit trashy.

The other sight was much more enticing, and lingered in my mind much longer, and with a much greater intensity, than the first. It was of a girl wearing a white, sheer silk shirt with a black bra beneath. The shirt was untucked, and the fabric seemed to softly dance in the gentle breeze, and through the sun the curve of her side and hips were clearly visible. Knowing that she had worn a black bra beneath such a diaphanous shirt, and that she must have made this decision with the full knowledge of what it would convey to those around her, only added to the eroticism of the moment. It was an image that stayed in my mind for the rest of the day, and even now it still delights me.

Both girls were attractive, but the girl wearing the sheer silk shirt conveyed a much deeper eroticism. The mind and imagination are the places where the seeds of the erotic are first planted. As I have often said on this blog, more is less when it comes to expression of erotic beauty. Let the mind wander, and let the imagination feast on what the world offers.

As Trump Buddy Tom Brady and Patriots Win Superbowl the Left Will Go Even More Insane

Trump and Brady are buddies...

Trump and Brady are buddies…

As Trump friends Tom Brady, Bill Belichick, Robert Kraft and the New England Patriots win their fifth Superbowl in the most amazing fashion, down by 25 points in the third quarter, I am sure the Left, which as been harassing Brady all week simply because he is friends with Trump, will go even that much more insane. It should be delightful!

This drives the Left insane...

This drives the Left insane…

More on this in the days to come….!

Goodbye and Good Riddance, January, until Next Year!

We still have a lot of winter to go, but at least winter does have its own type of beauty.

We still have a lot of winter to go, but at least winter does have its own type of beauty.

January is the worst month of the year: it is cold, dark and with little to look forward to, except the foreboding, icy depths of a long winter. At least in December you can anticipate and celebrate Christmas; February is a short month and leads into March, which, in many places, is when spring begins to really stir.

Now, we are still in the depths of winter, and there is plenty of cold and ice still to come, but February, at least for me, is a lot easier to bear than January.

So here is to saying goodbye to the worst month of the year, January, and looking forward to the fact that the warmth of spring is now one month closer!

Beautiful Sunday Art: Raphael’s Madonna of the Meadow

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This is a nice work from one of my favorite artists, Raphael (1483-1520). It is appropriate for a Sunday: calm, peaceful and full of beauty!

What is nice about Raphael’s works, especially as representative of the Renaissance art, is the lovely balance and smooth, fluid harmony that they possess. This is a wonderful example of that. Religion should bring us a certain amount of peace, and this painting is quite peaceful.

Great art is always a wonderful nourishment for the soul! It is a great expression of the God’s presence in the world. With all the negativity and bizarre things out there, we need that.