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Obligations

I find myself sometimes still struggling with my obligation to buy less. For example handbags and jewellry. I have to ask myself the question: do I really need this? Then I consider the money – how much good could this amount of money do to a person less fortunate than me? And, wouldn’t this handbag become just another bad buy and pile up in my closet or I have to sell it at the internet for a quarter of the price I paid? And what about the global problem of waste? The more I buy, the more waste I generate.

For some reason it appears as though buying new things is a way of being nice to myself. Whenever I’m feeling somewhat sad or down, spending money on items I really don’t need, have been the main way in which I’ve tried to make me happy again. During the last months, however, it has become clear to me that what makes me happy is not buying new things, but being with my son and my dog. I guess I’ve known this for some thime, but haven’t done anything about it before this lent. My buying stop during lent was really fruitful, and now it’s easier to not buy than buy. Because when thinking about buying an item I really don’t need, I get a bad conscience! And that helps me alot.

My want to contribute to a better world, a world with a more fair ressource distribution, obliges me to do and not do certain things. And though they may feel like a unneccessary sacrifice at the time, I know that it’s the right thing to do. And in the long run it will give me a better conscience. Knowledge should oblige one to act!

The parish priest always emphasise the fact that believing must be followed by action, otherwise one cannot say one believe. That’s a good thing to remember!

Lent is over…

At the Easter Vigil we sang an hymn which contained the words “now that lent is over”, and it suddenly struck me that, hey, lent is over. 💡 My lenten sacrifices had transformed into new habits, and I didn’t count the days until I could change back to the old habits. 🙂 Yesterday I bought a magazine (the cheapest weekly) but I got a bad conscience. I’m convinced that if lent becomes a more regular part of people’s yearly routine, the world would be a somewhat better place.

About halfway in lent, and still keeping my sacrifices…

I know one’s not supposed to brag about fasting, but as this is meant to be a personal blog, I regard it not as bragging, but simply stating the fact that I still manage to keep my sacrifices. I’ve even ended to magazine subscriptions today, as I saw that I don’t have the time to read them. This lenten sacrificing business is making me more satisfied with myself as I put my principles into action. I’ve had all these good principles in my head for some time, but have been rather dissatisfied with my failing to live by them. Lent is therefore a good time to put into action what I’ve been thinking about for some time.

Doing my daily round collecting and sending the mail for my office, I covered my head with a scarf – much like a muslim with some hair showing at my forehead. I did this because of the rain. And did not get any strange looks. It feels so right to cover, so I use every opportunity I’ve got, to do it. But, using a beret when it’s snowing or a scarf in rainy weather doesn’t make me stand out from the rest, and thus no one is able to see that I’m covering for religious reasons. I dream about going to a different town and cover my head just to see how it would be… Maybe on a holiday some time?

I can’t remember if I’ve posted some sort of explanation for my covering conviction? Well, it is according to the Bible. I can’t remember the exact place, but somewhere in the letters, St Paul writes about how a woman is to behave. She should among other things keep her hair long (it is stated that cutting one’s hair is wrong – it is the same as shaving the whole thing off) and to cover her head for the sake of the angels. In order to show that the woman has accepted being subordinated under her husband. Some say that the hair is the cover, but others says that that’s a translation mistake, and the covering should be in addition to the hair. That’s why I want to cover my head. To show that I’m subordinate under God. (The chain or rank of order is God-church-man-woman) Especially when praying I feel a need to bow my head and cover it, I’m talking to/with God! I know for certain that if I was to meet him, I would kneel down and bow my head in His presence. He is the Almighty, the Highest! I’m also trying to oppose to the mainstream thought in the society, that money and glamour and status makes one happy. And that people should be juged by their appearance and not inner qualities. Vain. And finally, in support to the muslim women who wear their hijab according to their religious or cultural beliefs. I can’t believe the Western countries banning hijabs in schools, workplaces and so on. I mean, to the hijabis, going out without that piece of clothing, is as if a non-coverer should stop wearing her trousers or blouse… They feel naked.

I took a pregnancy test today, but it was negative… I know it was too early, but I thought I could feel some of the symptoms known from the last time I was pregnant. That’s some sort of stretching ache very low on both sides of the stomach. But it could also be me wanting them to be the first signs of pregnancy… It could just be some bowel or congestion pains… :-S I must try to be more patient, and wait another week or so before I do more testing…

My lenten sacrifices

Today is day 15 of the lent, and I’m satisfied with the fact that I’ve managed to sacrifice the things I decided upon. But, I have to admit that it’s not always easy. Everyday I’m tempted to break my promises. I need to pray and stay focused. These are the sacrifices I’ll make this lent:

  • No magazine purchases
  • no clothing/accessories purchases
  • no jewelry purchases
  • use as little money as possible on items not considered as necessary (in a rigid sense)

In addition I’m trying to (this is sort of what everyone’s supposed to do in lent)

  • keep my everday eating simple (no cakes etc in weekdays)
  • study the Bible
  • donate money to Caritas
  • eat fish every friday (and of course the fasting of Ashwednesday and Good Friday)

I’m doing this not primarily to please God, but to teach myself a lesson about how having compassion with those less fortunate (moneywise) and about what material goods is neccessary and not, in order to live a good life. It is good for me personally, and it is also sound for the global environment and climate. Even back in the 4 th century, Evagrios of Pontos, made this “recipe” for the good/morally good life: Eat little and simple food, sleep on the ground, get rid of most posessions, live by yourself and talk to no-one. OK, that last advice I’m not thinking about taking up on, but the others – are ever important advices!