written + photographed by AMY BELLEZZA

ihave just recently read The Veil of Isis by Pierre Hadot. It is my first delve, in a number of years, into some real philosophy.

I had “veiled” my flowers before I bought the book, yet this veiling is the reason I bought the book. When Heraclitus says, “Phusis kruptesthai philei” or “Nature loves to hide,” or when Isis exclaims, “I am all that has been, that is, and that shall be; no mortal has yet raised my veil,” what does it all mean?

There is a secret and a mystery to Nature that science constantly tries to uncover. Be it through mathematics, physics, mechanics, industrialization or philosophy, Nature’s mysteries have never been fully revealed.

Taking the Orphic route, demystifying Nature is best left to the artists, who explore it through words, songs, poetry and the other arts. The Orphic Route is based on Hadot’s chapters on what he calls the Orphic Attitude based on the mythical Greek poet and musician Orpheus, in that he draws on myth and art to unfold the meanings of humanity’s changing relationship to the natural world.

In lifting the veil, we gain entry to a state of Nature and realize a spiritual awareness in which the mysteries are revealed and Truth may be discovered.

In placing a veil upon the flowers I have rendered these images as art with nuances that remain hidden. They need only to be explained through perception and discourse. As Isis states, “The veil will never be lifted, their true essence will always be kept secret.” Lifting their veils, which is done through perception, would allow a spiritual awareness to be explored with these flowers.

Are cut flowers more romantic than planted ones, or those still growing out in the wild? There is a certain anguish that goes along with cut flowers; a sadness pervades and a contemplation of them ensues and deepens. Their beauty will last only a few hours or days, and that leads to tragedy and becomes a faded and failed romance. There is only a tragic poem that belongs to the life of these cut flowers. When flowers are cut and put into vases or otherwise displayed, that is a violent action. Vased flowers can only be described aesthetically or scientifically, as a specimen, through the perception of the intended; the veil will remain in place.

African Roses


Baby's Breath


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