Oh wow... THAT was what those Orthodox Jews were burning when I lived in Lakewood, NJ.
Seriously all them dressed in black went to the center of town in some kind of basketball court or something and just started throwing boxes of the stuff in the fire.
Actually, the giving up of things is intended to help people improve themselves and work on their problems. Some, for example, give up drinking since it's a source of escape and self-medication for them.
I'm giving up DA & FA, and thinking about giving up Twitter & Facebook too.
Yes, I spend way too much time on those sites instead of doing more productive things.
The best way I can explain it is through an example. Say you're a smoker, and you resolve to give up smoking for the 40 days of Lent. And if you make it through those 40 days, sure, you could go back and smoke again...or, since you have proven you could go without for that long, you can stay off smoking. Improvement achieved.
As a former smoker, I'm aware quitting isn't that easy for everyone. Besides, you can choose just about any activity or object to abstain from. Who says they're no freedom in religion? *pet-pets* [=
(In before religion rage)
I ranted about this in Shop last night...
If you should give something bad up, or start doing something good - why wait until Lent or New Years Day to start it? Why not start it RIGHT NOW? why not always improve yourself, and always look for ways to improve yourself?
Having said that - Lent is not about giving up something bad - Lent is ABSOLUTELY about giving up something enjoyable - in commemoration of the 40 days and nights that Jesus went without food in the wilderness.
And if you don't think think that should be done - then don't partake in Lent. But don't belittle those who DO partake by saying it is "silly." That is Not Cool. You say you are not playing the enraged anti-theist - no, you are playing the mocking anti-theist.
Edited at 2012-02-22 01:08 pm (UTC)
Yeah I did get a bit heated... sorry about that... Lent is about sacrificing a pleasure or a luxury in hopes of attaining spiritual fulfillment... not to "better oneself" per se... but to reflect and meditate... or something like that... I am not Catholic... and have never observed Lent, apart from knowing a very small bit about it...
For Lent I will give up religious holidays :)
I had never considered the bunnies. I will have to rethink my position!
I thought you said you were Never Gonna Give Me Up?
I'm just giving up.
"For Lent this year, I have decided to give up people... and let people down... and run around and desert people..."
I keed I keed it's a joke.
While I do observe Lent in the Liturgical calendar, I am not to keen on lenten fast.
You gave up the rules and so do I.
I was going to say I give up Lent for Lent, but apparently I am not the only smart-ass that reads your journal. :)
It does turn out that I have recently decided to take a self-imposed break from recreational chemicals (examples: caffeine and alcohol) which is Lent-like through serendipitous timing... but it is with the intent of improving myself, and is intended to last beyond Easter, so let's run with that.
I wish more Christian customs were dedicated to actually improving their Christian selves, instead of getting into the business of forcibly "improving" others. Let's hope everyone celebrating Lent can learn something useful about themselves through their participation in it: "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone", the Golden Rule, and all that.
Dude...you totally got me. Well played sir. :-)
*golf claps* I will enjoy sushi rolls in your honor on Ash Wednesday. :D
I was freaking born on an Ash Wednesday. I had to give up a warm dark place where people leave me alone. Isn't that enough?