Friday, July 15, 2011


THE INFINITE WHEEL (All Art by Hallelujah Truth)

Hallelujah for OTHERNESS and METAPHORS that explain the differences and the similarities we experience as individuals in our communities! Each one of us is UNIQUE, yet we are powerfully connected and similar to our neighbors in some deep and meaningful way. Mark Nepo, poet, philosopher, and cancer survivor, explains it using a metaphor of a WHEEL with SPOKES:
Hallelujah Truth at the Rim of the Infinite Wheel

Imagine that each of us is a spoke in an Infinite Wheel, and though each spoke is essential in keeping the Wheel whole, no two spokes are the same. The rim of that Wheel is our living sense of community, family, and relationship, but the common hub, where all the spokes join is the one center where all souls meet.
It is at this hub, “where all souls meet,” that Nepo calls the “ATOM OF GOD.” I found this idea of individualized SOULS uniting into ONE BEINGNESS so exciting and the metaphor of the INFINITE WHEEL so compelling, I burst into a flurry of activity to visualize the concept for myself in the drawing you see here. Spending hours penning spirals, flowers, miniature wheels, and creatures, I contemplated my position on the INFINITE WHEEL and made some conclusions about MY HALLELUJAH SELF in relationship to all of you, MY FELLOW PILGRIMS.

THE HUB (The Atom of God)
First of all, I concluded that I prefer to stay close to the CENTER of the WHEEL with GOD. Since I was a child, I have been immersed in a contemplative life, dwelling in my imagination, reaching in deep, feeling the bottomlessness of my inquiries. As a young person, I sat on the edge of the WHEEL’S hub peering into the MYSTERY, surprised at its deep dark black unknowable infinity. It has been my life’s “struggle” to SEE what exists in this fertile darkness where all SOULS meet. As an adult, I have transformed the “struggle to see” into a JOYFUL JOURNEY of patient surprising discovery!

THE SPOKE (The Individual)
As a result of my natural preference for hanging out at the “inner” hub of the
INFINITE WHEEL and its proximity, I have spent a lot of time in SPOKEDOM, delighting in being an individual “spoke” emanating out from the hub (the ATOM OF GOD), cultivating my uniqueness, that which makes ME different from YOU.

One of my greatest hungers in life has been to be heard, to have a VOICE—a distinctive way of speaking that distinguishes ME from EVERYONE ELSE. I know I am not alone in this QUEST. In fact, I would venture to say EVERYONE of YOU reading this blog entry would express a similar desire to be listened to and to be appreciated for your unique perceptions and articulation of LIFE! The visual art I make and that you see on my blog Coffee with Hallelujah is an expression of my ME-NESS, my SPOKEDOM-NESS! Hallelujah!

THE RIM (The Community)
In my image of the INFINITE WHEEL, I have drawn Hallelujah Truth lounging at the RIM, staring out at ALL of US. There she is in the outer world of community, neighborhood, and workplace. I am suddenly aware that this positioning of myself there at the RIM is awkward, and I look forlorn and unengaged.

This ART piece of mine speaks to me—challenging me to explore how I feel about my participation and role in community and subsequent relationships to YOU and YOU and YOU. Sparks fly in my visual imagination, and I acknowledge the need for me to keep drawing and exploring this metaphor of similarities and differences in future drawings of the INFINITE WHEEL.  Hallelujah Truth needs be drawn multiple times at the HUB with GOD, positioned inside a SPOKE, and then returned to the RIM of community re-envisioned.

It is in this way that ART MATTERS to me! ART HEALS me where I am and the space I inhabit. ART can TRANSFORM all of US and MOVE US FORWARD in our SOJOURNS. I am certain that my image of Hallelujah Truth will change from forlorn and disengaged to something else on my SOULFUL JOURNEY!

PILGRIMS soul blog with Hallelujah Truth! Write me about where you find yourself on the INFINITE WHEEL today and where you have been and where you are going! What do you think about BEING THE ATOM OF GOD? Hallelujah!

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: Most loving thanks to my sister-in-law, Elizabeth Schowalter, for recommending that we read together and discuss The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo. In deep appreciation to Mark Nepo, who I first learned about through Sally Wylde’s reading of his deep and beautiful poetry (see her art work at one of my former blogs). Always thanks to my Chiboogamoo who travels lovingly and adoringly with me from the HUB to the SPOKE to the RIM!


  1. Hi Ruth. I like the different angles of spokes and rims you have explored here. These dimensions take the concept beyond 3-D, and adds a new viewpoint I think to Mark's world of individuals and community. I'm also intrigued by the mysterious green cloaked spirit at the center. Etta dog is crawling under the covers on my bed creating tunnels into another worldview beneath the surface of my reality.

  2. Dear SEE SEE, thank you for noticing the individuality of the spokes! How wonderful that this differentiation causes the image to have more depth!

    The mysterious figure in the center of the wheel represents the GREAT MYSTERY. Yes, I find her intriguing too.

    Hello to Miss Etta!