OUTSIDE THE VATICAN GATES

Welcome to Roger’s Take on Religion: An Inclusive Perspective

Behind the Vatican gates, the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Literature to Bob Dylan is being received with less than open arms.

“Bob Dylan composed songs, with beautiful lyrics, that were able to influence generations of songwriters, many of whom are really boring,” according to a statement in the Holy See newspaper.

This admonishment rekindles memories of being told early in life that listening to rock music would be the ruination of my generation.

In Dylan’s recognition, a generation now finds affirmation.

Here’s My Take: I understand why the Vatican seeks to downplay Dylan’s honor. Like Dylan himself, his lyrics are questioning, often prophetic and certainly skeptical of the powerful. While this may irritate the Vatican, it remains for those of us outside the gates of orthodoxy, legitimate and necessary expressions of faith.

Oh what’ll you do now, my blue-eyed son?… I’m a-goin’ back out ‘fore the rain starts a-fallin’, I’ll walk to the depths of the deepest black forest … Where hunger is ugly, where souls are forgotten, Where black is the color, where none is the number, And I’ll tell it and  think it and speak and breathe it, And reflect from the mountain so all souls can see it*

Better we stand outside the gates than live with arms a-folded.

* from “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall”

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