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What does Jesus smell like?

What does Jesus smell like?

Our local alternative paper,  Upper Left Edge, has published an edition featuring Jesus. Edited by author Tricia Gates Brown it features essays by a Muslim, a Jew, a Christian and a variety of people who have affection for Jesus and follow him though not through a formal church affiliation. An example is this quote from a longer poem:

What Jesus smells like by Vincent Ferrau

he ever laid a blue-veined compassionate hand
even the one with the
that touched Him
through a shaft of wood
and a head of

many of us
are built like that
dense and piercing
killing that
we’ve only just begun
to love

Jesus smelled like that
like unrequited love
and passion

fear turned upside down
becomes a chalice
capable of filling
but we all know
to feel satisfied
You must

Jesus smelled like that
like wine and fish
and transformation
like the unconditional love of
the lowliest quotient of
seen through fearless eyes
washed in
perfumed reverence…

From the publisher/editor Watt Childress:

What if many of the wonderful things about Jesus (his baffling compassion, his mystical rapport with life, his resistance to oppressive regimes) were an outpouring of his being raised a Jew? What if people of other faiths have as much to show the world about Jesus as Christians do? What if Muslims love Jesus too, and are equally poised to spread goodwill by putting his teachings into action?

In some quarters of the quantum universe, scratching heads over such questions may be a precursor to Christ consciousness (a critical mass of which could trigger a messianic age, sort of a pandemic of benevolence). At a minimum, the willingness to wonder might offer us some rest from the hard-line religious extremism that plagues our planet.

So keep scratching, and read on. These words and images are gathered with respect, playfulness, and reverence for life. Our hope is to open conversations among people of many persuasions who have more in common than we often realize.

Download the issue here. (PDF)



posted by Ann Fontaine

image from The Upper Left Edge, Nicole Poole


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