Joseph Campbell refers to James Joyce, Buckminster Fuller and Aquinas in talking about art. He says "Draw a frame around an object," say the old mill in this photo. And synergy will hold that object together with, not only the rest of the photograph, but also, as you contemplate it, with everything else in the universe. Wholeness is what you have created, by selecting a part of the whole to consider. One thing leads to all others. Art, rightfully perceived, connects us to everyone and all things. This is the Buddhist realization of "mutual arising," wherein everything is implicit in everything else, and "the whole system has simply arisen, (in our imagination/realization) as 'thus come,' like the Buddha (or the Christ) himself" (Joseph Campbell). This is Wholeness. And what that exposes/expresses is the "rhythm of beauty" (Joyce) which includes the relationships of colors, masses, space, conditions and circumstances to each other and all things. "All elements," says Campbell, "are part of this harmonious rhythm." This is Harmony. The perception of Harmony, flowing from Wholeness, gives rise to Radiance, to the "Wow!" that takes our breath, and stuns us into silent reverie, like the wonder of falling in love. Wholeness, Harmony, and Radiance are the three aspects of art which result in "esthetic arrest" (Campbell) and we have no thought of anything beyond the fascination of the experience of the moment, which suspends our ordinary/routine way of evaluating reality, "and the world--beheld without the judgement of its relevance to the well-being of the beholder-- is recognized as a revelation sufficient in itself" (Joyce). If art doesn't do that for us, it is "pragmatic (or pornographic [Joyce]) art," and not "proper art" (Joyce). Now you know. Begin putting frames around things, and find the path from Wholeness to Harmony to Radiance and Wonder. It will change the way you walk through the world. And open the way for you to religion in the best sense of the word.
The secret can be known, but not told. "The kingdom of God," said Jesus in the Gospel of Thomas, "covers the earth, and no one sees it." "The kingdom of God is within/among you," said Jesus in the Gospel of Luke. "All it takes are eyes to see and ears to hear," said Jesus throughout his life. What is the secret to seeing and hearing? It can be known/discovered/realized/understood, but not told. People who tell us they can tell us are lying to us. People who tell us, "Trust the force, Luke!" are saying all that can be said. We have to figure out what that means on our own. One way of getting to the point of seeing/hearing is taking up the practice of emptying ourselves of everything, including the desire to be empty. Sit in the stillness and the silence and empty yourself of everything, for as long, for as often, as it takes to realize you are empty of everything, then empty yourself of that realization. Being empty of everything is to be open to what is waiting to be known/realized/received/ recognized/embraced/understood/comprehended/... By waiting, we open ourselves to what is waiting for us to be open. Seeing/hearing is a particular way of seeing/hearing. It is like throwing a curve ball. We learn to do that by throwing a lot of balls that don't curve, waiting for something to "click," to "shift," to "fall" into place. No one can learn to throw a curve ball without throwing a lot of balls that do not curve. If we are looking for a quick way to true religion, we are trying to skip the "throwing a lot of balls that don't curve" part. "Make it quick, Preacher, I tee-off at 12:15!" Won't do it. If you see this much, you are well on your way. Keep throwing!
What needs to be done always lies plain before us, obscured by the Four Demonic Devices: Greed (Desire), Fear, Loathing and Lethargy. Any time that we don't know what to do, we only have to see how we are interfering with our own psychic signals through our ego-centered interests getting in the way. What we want and do not want prevent us from responding-- certainly from responding appropriately-- to what needs what we have to offer in each situation as it arises, day-by-day. The solution, once we see how we are preventing our necessary engagement with our life, is to grow up some more again by dying to our wishes/wants/way and living to serve the true needs unfolding before us in the moment at hand. Our soul's deep joy is to express itself, using its gifts/daemon/genius/shtick/virtues in service to the needs of the time that is to be fulfilled here and now. Our soul is here to meet the time that has come. Here and now. Every moment is the right time for something. What, only the soul knows. And we are our soul's servant in all moments great and small throughout the way that is The Way, in a "Came not to be served, but to serve," and a "Thy will, not mine, be done," with the "Thy" being the needs of the moment, response to the time and place of our living, time after time. Understanding this and acquiescing/submitting to it, living in accord with it, aligned as one with its service, is to "enter into the joy" of full life, spilling over, pouring out, as a blessing and a grace upon all things. And we can't beat that with a Super Bowl ring and a Most Valuable Player trophy.