Aug 9, 2020

6 min read

The gifted clay man

Photo by Roman Hinex on Unsplash

Pottery, the moulding of form out of a formless mass and its becoming imperishable through firing, is the most miraculous kind of creation”.

When time was not time, and space was, well, not space, a clay artist was admiring his artifacts in his laboratory. Light was steady in his heart and hands. Each day he spent his hours moulding and decorating his pottery. With the precision of a chemist he drew its symbols and with the kindness of a creator he sheltered it in colors and reliefs. His work has never been surpassed, if, indeed, it has never been equaled. The beauty of these objects has been the envy of other potters, but the clay artist could not care less.

His fingers gently touched the open edge of a vessel and, with satisfaction in his eyes, he knew that the mastery of his work is certainly defined by the void created inside, around the darkness of the walls. In order to make the emptiness whole, the clay artist sprinkled it with gold glittering dust that was given to him by the stars. The magic field was a small parcel at the back of his house and he tried to protect it from view by reap it each morning at the first light wave of the Sun.

In his laboratory, the clay artist had only one jar with stardust. He did not need or wanted more. This was his treasure and his burning wish was to share it with others.

7 pieces he created for his soul collection and he was determined to give them away as a gift to 7 different people.

The 1st vessel was a bowl with small pierced handles covered in the golden dust. “The one, whom serves from it, never has to worry about being hungry again. The vessel will always be filled with food and the children who eat from it will have a marvelous destiny”, said the clay artist to oneself.

The 2nd vessel was a pitcher. With a small and rounded base, the beauty of the pot reside in its long neck built with flowing gentle movements, just as the course of a river flooding on the surface of the Earth. Steady, free, natural while humbly shining in the light waves. “Pure water will be carried inside and the one whom drinks from it will have perfect health”. As he was lofty of his thoughts, the clay artist knew that this gift was meant to heal the body of a lost soul.

The 3rd piece was a three-inch oil holder, containing the ointment of spikenard. It was covered in heavenly blue and it was a piece that would last forever in the arms of time. As tiny as it was, it hid inside the attributes of beauty. “This is for the woman that would unconditionally want to share it with others. She needs to have kindness in her being and a beauty that transcends her body”, mumbled the clay artist with enthusiasm in his whispering voice.

The 4th crockery was a jar with an arched lid. On top of the lid, he made a crystal sphere so the person who opens or closes it will always feel protected. “Inside you can put your most valuables souvenirs, and each time you look inside you will know that you are never alone. Your memories will remain vivid and the loved ones who crossed your path are safely kept in your mind and heart. A lonely man”…and the clay artist finished his monologue and focused his attention on his next piece.

The 5th object was a chalice. The foot was triumphantly standing on a primrose. Same as a botanist would do, the clay artist crafted 5 petals and painted the yellow spot at the center of the flower inside the glass, the yellow eye. “The one who drinks from it awakens. He will be sober in his thoughts and drunk in his love. The power of the chalice will shake up his entire existence”, the clay man concluded.

The 6th vessel was a vase covered in enamel, which when baked became brilliant and enduring. “Its brightness will conquer his doubts and the man will find purpose. For someone whose thoughts are not in alignment with who he is, thus he needs courage”.

While he was putting his treasures away and arranging them on the shelf in their usual order, the clay artist was astonished to realize the beauty of the 7th of the vessels. It was his most cherished piece and he felt a tingly sensation in his chest each time he looked at it. It was a mould-made amulet in the shape of an ankh, now a lost treasure of his and other civilizations.

That night he worried. He was kept awake by his thoughts, trying hard to think about anything that would help him find his peace. But that night, he also had a dream. The outside light turned grey when the clay man finally fell deeply asleep.

“You can do what I do” said the man in the dream. “I put my life at risk to save each one of them and, at the end of the day, only a few appreciate my efforts. At the beginning, I was hurt by their ignorance, but with time, I learnt that whatever I do, I do it with an open heart and no expectations. Are you willing to take this journey for their benefit?” and the man turned his back leaving only the nothingness of the dark and the dim light surrounding him.

If there was something that would make the clay man overthink his entire existence was this dream and this question. He had it before. He knew what it meant, but he didn’t feel ready. It wasn’t easy for him to make a decision. The balance between yes and no was steady and the man from the dream was right. Was he willing to give up the comfort of his laboratory and share his hidden work with 7 different strangers? Taking responsibility of the lives of others was somehow empowering and he knew he was guided, but he still had his fears. His doubts were ruminating through his head telling him he’s neither a coward nor a saint. For certain he was none. But he had a gift and he was going to use it for the benefit of others.

“You are ready Elliot. Life prepared you well” said the man from his dream grabbing his left shoulder as he wanted to give him the reassurance he needed. In the soft light, the man’s eyes were protruding and full of sparkle.

“I am ready, my friend, and I won’t disappoint you. Thank you”, said the clay man. He barely finished his words and the man from the dream vanished into the darkness, leaving only a handful of white light behind him.

The clay man gently opened his eyes.

“The modern world is simply a second-class version of a forgotten wisdom. It isn’t starving the mouth, but the spirit. We have everything we need, except one thing — our freedom. The liberty to be who we want to be and live our lives as we want, come with a high price. Our power is not in our hands, but at the mercy of a few who simply don’t care about us, our families or our people. And why one must care? Our imperfections are so obvious that I don’t even want to have a single drop of sweat on my forehead because of someone else. They don’t deserve it and they never will. But there’s something else telling me that this is not the way. What matters most is what I do and I want only well for these people. My work is for them not for me,” thought the clay man and his confidence took over his doubtful mind once and for all.

He had no idea how he will find his special recipients, but he had confidence and faith that he will succeed. He was a gifted clay man after all.