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Tom Scotus

Dylan, Natural Beauty and God

bobdylan

I’m a big Dylan fan. I just never seem to get tired of his music. One of the reasons is that it is generally ill defined, like a beautiful photo that is somewhat fuzzy and poorly lit, so that you are intrigued and want to see more. You never quite "get it," so you remain on a quest. Another reason is that Dylan has constantly reinvented himself during his long career. Just when people thought they knew what to expect from him, he would change, yet somehow remain the same. Dylan is also secretive. He has been in the public eye for decades, but remains a man of mystery, and that’s part of his appeal. But Dylan isn’t the amazing song writer he once was. He has also not been gifted with the greatest voice or musical ability. If you are looking for God, Dylan would be the first to admit, "It ain’t me, babe."

When man creates things, other than art, they are usually well defined and uniform, like four-inch cubes. Man’s creations, such as television sets, automobiles, and clothing, are only "perfect" when they are not scratched, dented or stained. Once in use, they begin to degrade and become less attractive. Yet God’s creation, nature, is different. A rock on a beach is worn from millions of years of erosion, yet remains beautiful. If it has sand on it or is chipped, it looks no less beautiful. And, unlike objects that come off an assembly line, each rock is unique.

Nothing could be more routine than a sunrise, yet each is uniquely beautiful. Dirt is everywhere in nature, yet nature is never dirty, unless it is littered with man-made debris. Dying leaves falling on a forest floor are not litter. They only add to the beautiful scene and contribute to the life cycle. I don’t mean that urban environments can’t be beautiful. However, what is most intriguing about them is the people -- and people are created in God’s image.

Humans like to define and label everything. Once they do, they can "dismiss" them and move on. We also attempt this with God. However, we can never completely understand Him. The Church teaches that God is omni-present, all-powerful, and all-knowing. He is a spirit that can take on physical attributes. He is the creator of all. He is love. Yet the great doctors of the faith ultimately admit that God is an enigma.

I’m not really sure why I love Dylan’s art. I just do. Many people hear him sing and say, "That’s awful!" And that’s okay. Dylan’s music isn’t for everyone, and we don’t have to like it. But it’s different with God. We must not only like Him, we must love him with our whole hearts. Our eternal happiness depends on it. God’s attributes ensure that if we spend eternity with Him, we will never tire of Him. We will always find him intriguing, all-satisfying and amazing beyond anything we can imagine.