The Icon: Opening Reality’s Depth

This is from David Bentley Hart.

For Christian thought there lies beween idolatry and the ethical abolition of all images the icon, which redeems and liberates the visible, and of which the exemplar is the incarnate Word: an infinite that shows itself in finite form without ceasing to be Infinite–indeed, revealing its infinity most perfectly thereby

(p. 15).

Summarizing Jean-Luc Marion Hart writes,

The icon provokes vision, summons it to the place where the visible is penetrated by the invisible.  The icon shows an infinite gaze: not one simply sat at a distance but one that draws vision into itself, which gives distance; and shows that along with the original ousia there is already the hypostasis (an eminently Trinitarian thought) whose gaze infinitely deepens the visible, transforming the creature, saturating the creature in glory.



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