In the case of the meetinghouse, people are going there to witness the experience of meeting for worship and to greet the light. That's what most Quakers would be doing in this space. Right? Does the meetinghouse facilitate that?
It does and it doesn't. Generally, in the meetings for worship, the roof would not be open. The roof is a part of visual ministry, which has the element of thought without sound. The open roof tends to make for more silence. The oral ministry is something that keeps you from the deeper communication with the inner, so I like meetings that aren't the popcorn meetings, where everybody is jumping up and popping off. I like the silent meeting. That is my preference. But there is oral ministry, and I have to recognize that, and I have participated in it.

So the roof is closed during meeting for worship?
Yes.

When do you open it? And why would you open it? Why would you have an oral ministry?
Because you want to see the light.

Why would you have a visual ministry?
Because you want to see the light. Same thing.

Do you read the Bible?
I'm more Christian than many Quakers. Universalist Quakers are not necessarily considered Christian by other Christians. They don't believe in the Trinity, the Virgin Birth, many of these things; so we're odd Christians--in many ways sort of Old Testament Christians. And I like to look at that as being near what the Essenes were. I'm different in the sense that, in fact, I am more conservative than many Quakers I know.

Is your work moving toward a more spiritual path, or does it exist independently of the spiritual path?
Neither. It is and isn't a spiritual plane. Our business here is not about anything but more fully forming the experience of soul. My belief is that one's work here is, whatever you do here is autobiographical and has to do with spiritual development. We do it through work; we do it through our relationships with others, through families.

I don't have a sense that I am moral or amoral. I don't feel that the positive and the negative really functions in quite that way. In terms of the effect of art upon people, that has to do with their situation when they come to this art. Art doesn't have terrible importance for me either. It is something that I do, it is something that I am, but you know art is something that can move you toward the spiritual. But to continue that journey, it is something you must drop. There are aesthetic considerations; the sense of beauty and the sublime are things that move us toward a grandeur, but in the end hold us from it. It is like something that is a step along the path, and I treat it as such and think it is only that. And so art isn't everything.

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