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IN THE COMMUNITY
Teacher promotes deep philosophy
Saturday, August 26, 2006
Laura WeldonSpecial to The Plain Dealer
Bring forth the living waters,
O keepers of the spring
The winding thirst that brought you here
Asks you now to drink
These lyrics, by F. Christo pher Reynolds, subtly evoke the experience of a woman named Marilyn, who was vacuuming her living room one day when she saw an angel coming down her stairs.
Reynolds performs original songs at a summer arts concert in a Berea courtyard. Between tunes, he shares insights. A little girl puts her arms out and dances, spinning close to Reynolds, while in the distance preschoolers whirl to his music like a solar system of adoring fans.
During the day, this singer/songwriter teaches French at Berea High School. Many of his students arrive throughout the evening, a testament to what this man means in their lives. He hails them and others he recognizes in the audience, as comfortable entertaining under the summer sky as most people are in their own homes.
The crowd might notice this isn't an ordinary concert. Near the sidewalk, an easel supports a blue canvas covered with constellations painted in gold. They are marked with unfamiliar names such as "Lamp of the Archer" and "Eagle-headed Harp." Handouts titled "Esse in Poesis" are available. Deeper meanings are encoded in the song lyrics.
That's because the 45-year-old Reynolds is waging creativity in the streets, the classroom and even in academic journals. He is the originator of an art movement called Urrealism. It is backed by a complex philosophy connected in ever-widening circles with such disciplines as depth psychology, cultural studies and astronomy.
Just as Surrealism emerged as a response to the materialism and violence of World War I-era society, the events of Sept. 11 compelled Reynolds to offer Urrealism.
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