Reproduction of “The Christ in the Desert” painting by I. Kramskoy hangs in my room above the table. Friends, coming to me on a visit, ask in surprise: did I become a zealous Christian? And they are even more surprised at the unexpectedly negative answer.
It seems to me that the picture, lovingly painted by the remarkable artist Kramskoy, is understandable to representatives of any religion. After all, here we are not talking about faith in some particular higher being, but about the belief of a person in himself and his painful desire to constantly be in a state of choice.
What attracted me to this picture? The immobile figure of the seated person clearly emerges against the background of an endless rocky desert and an endless morning sky. The person is deeply immersed in his thoughts – his absent look, the clasped fingers of tightly clasped hands, his posture and facial expression easily reveal it. The person decides. The person chooses. Man is not God!
In the image of Christ in this picture I see infinitely much earthly and infinitely little divine, unless I adhere to the concept that God lives in every person. This Christ is capable of suffering, of doubting, and this makes him so close to us, people, and so far from the dispassionate sky.
The choice of Christ is especially important, because behind him are millions of people who believe in him, and their fate depends on the correctness of the decision made.
Contradictory feelings in me cause this picture. On the one hand, Christ, sitting on a stone fragment, is endlessly lonely. No one can help him now, encourage, suggest. And on the other hand, Christ needs solitude, to make an unerringly correct decision, weigh all the pros and cons. You can not interfere with a person during his meditations!
Reflecting the doubts of the hero of the picture is the sky above him. The last clouds will soon disappear beyond the horizon, the golden dawn quietly observes the course of the inner struggle of the pondered man with himself.
I believe that Christ will remain in the desert for a short time. He will resolve his doubts and make a choice. This figure is symbolic, in the place of Christ can be everyone. Therefore, in difficult moments this picture helps me dispel sad thoughts, believe in my own strength and do not forget that love for people helps a person throughout his life to remain a man. Or by God.