Thursday, July 12, 2007

And the final answers are:

Seeing as it is MY blog and all, I thought I would give you my answers - but I suggest you read the comments to the previous post first, because all are good and some are downright hysterical!

They got me to thinking, after laughing so loudly that I probably woke the entire neighborhood, that I was beginning to see some common themes, even in the discordant nature of your exuberant definitions (oh yes, some of you got great joy in writing those down!).

For potter, here are some themes that seem to arise. A potter is a person that actively exerts power over something or someone else. As has been so artfully portrayed, this raises the question as to how the something or someone else, whether clay, rain, plants, children or toys, are actually procured. Did they exist before; did the potter purchase them; perhaps the potter, as in the case of children, actually created them. In any case, underlying all the very fun comments, I see the potter obtaining, by purchase or creation, someone or something that the potter will then act upon. And so, here is my definition.

Potter – a creator, a visionary who sees in lifelessness (dirt that is good for growing absolutely nothing), chaos (got kids?), or natural disaster (squidgy gardens) something of potential beauty, usefulness or worth – and – who has the power to do something about it. The responsibility of all the “objects” acted upon – simply to sit still in the potter’s hands and yield to the pressure.

Now, of grace, something that draws irresistibly, catches us when we fall, is lovely even to the point of elegance, inclusive and smiling at us even when we make quite a mess.

Grace is effortless beauty, efficacious in that it is capable of producing the desired effect.

And so. I now leave you and our fun game for the rigors of science and the rapidly approaching Monday grant deadline. I genuinely solicit your prayers and best thoughts for deadline completion – no writing extensions offered to this type of author – and will see you all on the far side of the surgery that detaches the plug-in connection between my brain and laptop.
But I want to leave you with these final thoughts that echo through my soul as I think of these two words – how willing am I to accept the efficacious and beautiful favor of the potter’s hand; how yielded am I to the slightest pressure of his hand?


lorenzothellama said...

Hello Susan. Sorry I haven't been around for a few days but have had a very old friend stay with us.

I liked your explanations very much and also the explanations of the other contestants. Please will you do this again some time.

English weather doesn't improve. I thought yesterday after about three hours of sun that today I would mow the lawn, but on waking it was back to the dreary grey wet skies and constant rain. Oh well, see what tomorrow brings.

Love Lorenzo.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Susan, Good question at the end. It certainly mars and slows down the project when we resist.

I can see how those terms fit well together, as well.

lorenzothellama said...

Any insights on potting and being disgraceful I would be pleased to provide!

Martin Stickland said...


I think I may have solved my comment leaving problem so thanks for your advice!

My Aunt used to make pots in her potty potting shed.

Hope you are well!

L.L. Barkat said...

Brings up interesting questions about whether the pot can resist. Of course, it's just a metaphor, but God seems to imply that Israel resisted (making a grand mess of themselves).

Best wishes as you write the grant. Big responsibility, I know!

lorenzothellama said...

Hello Susan!
Potters and Clay. Do you think I should write a post on it? Trouble is I don't have many photos and that always helps.

Clay can resist the potter if the potter isn't relaxed. Before you start using the clay you have to knead it, rather like dough, and also wedge it. This breaks down the clay molecules (don't ask me how) and the clay responds so much better. For throwing on the wheel I always use recycled clay, that is clay that I have used before, broken down in a bucket of water and then dried out, wedged and kneaded. It behaves so much better.
Listen Susan, if I go on like this it will be pages long and I haven't even got onto techniques, recycling clay, firing, glazing and all the rest of the nonsense we have to do.
What do you think about a posting?
Love Lorenzo.

lorenzothellama said...

Have just done a post on potting, just for you.

Mark Goodyear said...

Interesting thing about pots. Except for the rare piece of art, most pots are only about what they contain.

That's a bit humbling really. Am I willing to let the potter fashion me in such a way that defines how I can best serve him and others? Why do I insist being viewed as a work of art when I'm really just a pitcher for serving water to thirsty folks?

I hope your grant writing went well!

Mike said...

Just came across your blog. Very interesting. I will be back