Monday, November 28, 2011

A thought for an Advent Monday

It's funny how one thing builds on another. Last Friday, along with my weekly traditio, I posted an extract from David Foster Wallace's Broom of the System, which built on an observation made by Kafka. Foster Wallace wrote: "that it is the person who does not want to do the ridiculous thing who feels out of place and uncomfortable and self-conscious... in a word, ridiculous."

Today, I came across the reason why I posted that, stated very succinctly: "A time is coming when people will go mad and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him, saying 'You are mad, you are not like us'"- St. Anthony the Great. Indeed, we live in times like that, times when we wonder out loud about what when wrong when an act of intercourse results in conception, times when, despite widespread cultural and societal breakdown, we stand not only watch the demise marriage and family, but often aid and abet in this demise, and consider those who act positively in this regard as narrow-minded and intolerant, etc. There are a lot of other directions I could go with St. Anthony's observation. For example, there is nothing more counter-cultural than one's willingness to forgive.

3 comments:

  1. Oh goodness (smiles). Life doesn't always make sense right away.

    I listened to your gregorian singers today. What a hoot! They chanted 'Bad Romance' -- it was horribly beautiful! They were so outside of their genre - one might consider them a bit shameless. Brought delighted laughter here... Glad to see anyone trying something different! Ohhhh.. and my silly bird-- was completely taken by one their songs. I think he was shooting for a solo....

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  2. I walked away from the computer for a bit after the last post... My first reaction to reading your post, was to remind you to laugh. As I began work on my Christmas project, my mind wandered a little... Earlier today, I was thinking along a similar train of thought. For me... testing untreaded waters. Not just reading the Bible, but believing in it... Honestly believing in it. It is easy to say, I believe -- but to place trust in the words-- to do that, sometimes you appear a little crazy. You can feel a little crazy also... no logical basis in which to fall back upon -- just this indefinable faith. I thought too -- of how these 'crazy' actions develop into a deeper sense of trust and communication with God... And then-- looking at revelation -- how important it is to have this relationship. There are moments when faith is tested... I recently encountered such a test and I did not fair nearly as well as I imagined I would. Revelations brings me mixed emotions... in some senses I welcome it -- but I also appreciate the gravity.

    I had listened to a radio talk show last Sunday on my drive home from work... The speaker was talking about hearing but not listening... Not appreciating the full impact of what is said within the teachings of the Bible. Almost as if we have heard it so many times before, that it is difficult to hear it for what it is... Hmmmm... Am I making sense? I know what I am trying to say -- but unsure if I am expressing it.

    My crazy seems to encompass walking away from what is taught through logic and intellect ... and testing or discovering truths in action... maybe trusting that it is okay to do what is 'right'... To someone who isn't recognizing what you are doing-- they react in fear and alarm... call you crazy. My mother used to react to me in this manner... She was very cautious with her money and very deliberate in all financial interactations. I know she had my best interest in mind -- but if I saw someone who needed money (an item in my possession, etc) more than myself, I would give it away. An example: When I purchased my home, I gave away my previous home (it wasn't much, a trailor, but new windows, furnace, carpets -- it was good)... The poor woman was beside herself -- but honestly, I knew I would be fine. It proved true over and over... A few years later when financial hardship came upon me ... I was accepted under a new program that funded rebuilding of my foundation wall and several other home repairs. These repairs not only benefited my home -- they also reduced heating costs making it possible to survive on my income. --- It just works. Logically it cannot be entertained.

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  3. I laugh plenty. The world's insanity is not infrequently what causes me to laugh. TO follow Christ, really and truly, has always been to go against the grain of the world. This is nothing new, which is why we can still find St. Anthony's quote highly relevant.

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