Wednesday, February 6, 2008
I'm fairly ignorant of the world's religions, and I confess that when Sarah (friend/teacher/awesome possum person) told me she was giving up soda for Lent last year, I didn't really know what she was talking about. I got the explanation in a round about way, through a story about some guy who said that he needed to go on a diet so he was going to participate in Lent, and he didn't actually believe in God. Sarah, being a very religious person, was of course extremely offended, so I gathered that that was NOT the way to partake of Lent.
When she mentioned it again for this year's event, I thought, is Lent a verb? Can I Lent?
"So do you want to go to the movies?"
"I can't, I'm Lenting."
"Nope, Lenting here, thanks anyway."
So all of this extremely pious and deep thinking brought me to the grand idea that I might participate in Lent. I say "might" because I'm still wondering if I could possibly give up anything significant for 40 days. For example, I could easily give up commerical watching for 40 days (see previous post). I could also give up grading for 40 days. I guess that is significant, but it still wouldn't be hard. I guarantee that my students would love the idea and immediately resolve to participate in lent next year. I could give up... carrots, probably.
Sarah's giving up soda. I could definitely do that. Of course, that would be after I drink the Ting that I just got from Cailin and Iz.
Well, I do think that Lent is a good idea. Not just for the sake of giving up something, but the religious aspect of it almost makes me feel guilty for not even considering it before. It's not an LDS practice, but I can see how this could be an appealing thing to any type of religious person. Remembering God in place of a more prominent habit of your life is exactly what we should be doing, every day, even if it's not usually just a one piece specific thing that we're giving up. One thing shouldn't be too hard, right?
There's the added benefit of quitting something that is probably not very good for your personal physical and/or spiritual health. I certainly don't want to experience Sarah's wrath for doing it only for that reason, however. If I do pick something that I should probably be doing anyway, am I doing it for the wrong reasons? Or am I not wanting to commit to it because I really don't want to give up ice cream for forty days?
All of this Lent-ing thinking is kind of exhausting, and still confusing.
I'm thinking that I am giving up "obvious treats"-- meaning, I can still eat granola in the morning, and fruits, but ice cream, chocolate, cookies-- that stuff is out. If I gave up one kind of treat, it would be too easy, because I'm good at substituting.
The pudding in the fridge is calling to me. Since when did pudding have any pull at all? Since when did I start rationalizing whether pudding counted as a "treat"? I previously considered it a healthy substitute to my cravings.
It's also making me wish I had partaken more in Fat Tuesday, because now it's Wednesday, and I'm Lenting.
Scribbled by Mariko at 9:09 PM