And while we’re considering Roman things, here’s the extraordinary Aeneas intaglio from the Getty Museum:
I blog, therefore I blog. I wrote a post about ownership, consumption, mortality, and “litel myn librarie,” and another about how to become “news-resilient.” I also wrote about … oh heck, just head over there and take a look.
One might, as well, consider this Lenten period as a period of descent. For one, it can be a period of our more frequently descending with our minds into our hearts in silent prayer, into prayer as communion with Christ. It is also a descent into our partaking of His kenosis, His emptying, His self-sacrifice that occasions our healing. Lent, therefore, becomes a salutary means of our dying to mindless habits, our dying to soul-scattering distractions, our dying to life-inhibiting illusions. It becomes a season of greater deliberation, and a recovery of our sense of the invisible Love in whom we live and move and have our being, even when we don’t take notice. Great Lent is the Church’s way of assisting our taking notice.
We die for a season, and then we live, live with greater awareness, and live more fully. So they say, and so I gather.
A Lenten poem by R. S. Thomas, called “Tidal”:
The waves run up the shore and fall back. I run up the approaches of God and fall back. The breakers return reaching a little further, gnawing away at the main land. They have done this thousands of years, exposing little by little the rock under the soil’s face. I must imitate them only in my return to the assault, not in their violence. Dashing my prayers at him will achieve little other than the exposure of the rock under his surface. My returns must be made on my knees. Let despair be known as my ebb-tide; but let prayer have its springs, too, brimming, disarming him; discovering somewhere among his fissures deposits of mercy where trust may take root and grow.
This will be the last Snakes & Ladders newsletter for … well, for a while. I can’t be more specific. I plan to resume service when I am able. Thanks for listening in!