22 February 2015

A long journey

The cold is moving in again and we are expecting -30 degree weather for tomorrow.  That being said, I am actually looking forward to a cosy day together.  We don't have a fireplace, but we have a wall of windows on our corner unit, so the sun warms our place nicely in the winter.  (Sometimes I turn off the heat during the day because it's more than enough.)  A couple little ones are not well, so there will be some snuggling and reading - two favourite activities - and hopefully some quiet work.  And reflection.  Lots of that.

Lent is beginning, my friends.  A long journey towards the most profound and brightest Feast.   The Feast of feasts.  But first, there is the journey.  An often monotonous journey punctuated by a quiet sadness or gravity.  I love what Alexander Schmemann wrote about Lent - it captures the whole spirit:

"But then we begin to realize that this very length and monotony are needed... Little by little we begin to understand, or rather to feel that this sadness is indeed "bright", that a mysterious transformation is about to take place in us.  It is as if we were reaching a place to which the noises and the fuss of life, of the street, of all that which usually fills our days and even nights, have no access - a place where they have no power.  All that which seemed so tremendously important to us as to fill our mind, that state of anxiety which has virtually become our second nature, disappear somewhere and we begin to feel free, light and happy.  It is not the noisy and superficial happiness which comes and goes twenty times a day and is so fragile and fugitive; it is a deep happiness which comes not from a single and particular reason but from our soul having, in the words of Dostoevsky, touched "another world".  And that which it has touched is made up of light and peace and joy, of an inexpressible trust.    (Alexander Schmemann - Great Lent: Journey to Pascha)

A blessed journey to you.  


  1. Cold and flus... is it just me or we are all singing the same song this winter. *sighs* Spring cannot come soon enough! Your quote is beautiful. We do not observe lent, I must admit. I was raised catholic and lent usually meant "no sweets until the sweet fest of Easter!" I never took it very seriously. I understand it more now. But in our Tao cultivation, we practice daily individual and global repentance. So when lent comes, we repent for those who can't or know how. Like your quote says, I don't feel it as a sadness but a gift. To have the power to free yourself of the weight of guilt. It is truly a blessing.

    Be blessed on your journey my friend, and take care of yourself (and your lovely flock). xo

    1. Hehe... we're all singing together on key! :) That's a very interesting idea - repenting for oneself and others. A lot of the Eastern ascetics I've read have advocated the same. A beautiful expression of love, I think.