Long live the blog!

Lefalcon, how are things in Mukalla?  It sounds like quite a change from Aden. 

Monday night I attended a meeting of Ball State’s Orthodox Christian Fellowship.  As you recall, I’d attended once last year and had been meaning to go back.  Someone I hadn’t seen there before asked me if I was an Orthodox Christian.  No, I said, I’m a Quaker.  This was a bit of an exaggeration; I haven’t joined the Friends Church yet, but am planning to do so.  This drew a puzzled look.  “I’m very comfortable with Quakerism and can’t imagine being anything but a Quaker, and that’s precisely why I want to learn more about Orthodoxy.  I want to make sure that I’m not just looking for an excuse for being the sort of person I already am.”  “Well, Quakerism and Orthodoxy are certainly opposite ends of the sprectrum.”  I agreed.  For example, the Orthodox always tend towards the most elaborate possible liturgical forms, while Quaker liturgy consists of sitting still.  

At any rate, the theme of that meeting was  the New Year.  Because 1 September is New Year’s day in the liturgical calendar of the Orthodox Church.  In that spirit, I declare my New Year’s resolution to be posting more stuff on this blog.


  1. cymast

     /  December 9, 2008

    Congratulations on meeting all your objectives.

  2. acilius

     /  December 9, 2008

    Thank you! Though I didn’t really start posting much stuff until just after the end of that liturgical year and the beginning of the next.

  3. lefalcon

     /  March 4, 2009

    I was noticing this comment:

    “I want to make sure that I’m not just looking for an excuse for being the sort of person I already am.”

    In a way, isn’t that a little bit like saying (and I’m not saying that this is necessarily exactly [or even remotely] what you are, in fact, saying; but just that it seems possible to construe your words as potentially having, as viewed from a particular angle, this dimension of meaning): “Hey, I know I’m a bastard … so I’m going to make sure I get myself into a religious system that will kick my ass and reform me, instead of allowing me to continue being the fuckup that I am” ?

    Or conversely, maybe there’s nothing wrong with practicing a religious system that you feel suits you. I mean, life is only so long … and I for one have no plans to pull a St. Antony and stay boxed up in an outhouse for X number of years; or some similar stunt. And maybe there’s no particular reason why any of us need to do that type of thing, unless we’re somehow inexorably drawn to outhouses and the like. Just a thought.

  4. cymast

     /  March 5, 2009

    Don’t mean to butt-in, but

    “I want to make sure that I’m not just looking for an excuse for being the sort of person I already am.”

    I took to mean “I want my new religion to be a reflection of me, instead of me a reflection of it.” Or vice-versa, depending on how indoctrinated you are.

  5. acilius

     /  March 5, 2009

    I was a thinking of T S Eliot’s line, “A philosophy that does not involve sacrifice is simply an excuse for being the sort of person one is.” And that’s the last thing anyone needs. Our circumstances are always changing, if we are alive we should be always changing with them. The day I adopt a philosophy of life that demands nothing of me, the day I start to use that philosophy as an excuse for clinging to my familiar patterns of thought and behavior, that is the day I start dying. When I abandon that philosophy and commit myself to take a journey that leads I know not where and ends I know not when, that’s the day I come back to life.

  6. cymast

     /  March 5, 2009

    You got me thinking . . maybe I should try to become a homeless, deeply religious, street-preaching freegan. All very noble pursuits, and all WAY out of my comfort zone. My new lifestlye would be very demanding, and I would have to sacrifice a lot. But just think of all the ways I won’t be the person I am!

  7. acilius

     /  March 5, 2009

    I’m sure there are many paths that could lead a person to that situation. And many paths that would lie open before a person who had arrived there. Who knows whether one of those will be your path in the future, or mine.

  8. cymast

     /  March 6, 2009

    Wow it’s my goal in life to NOT become a “homeless, deeply religious, street-preaching freegan” . . er, ONE of my goals . . Because I know that’s not who I am- those specific, noble pursuits may be in sync with others, but they’re not in sync with me. And if I were to become a “homeless, deeply religious, street-preaching freegan,” I would no longer be the “me” I now know.

    IMO, noble, radical change is not always good. We can’t, and shouldn’t, ALL be street-preaching freegans. People should have some continuity of original self. Otherwise, aren’t we just leaves in the wind?

    I guess you and I have different philosophies. Or maybe you’re more enlightened than I.

  9. acilius

     /  March 6, 2009

    “I guess you and I have different philosophies. Or maybe you’re more enlightened than I.”

    Thanks for putting it that way- as soon as I clicked “submit” on my previous comment, I thought, hmm, that sounds like a fortune cookie.

  10. cymast

     /  March 6, 2009

    You’re welcome.

    I like how fortunes can apply to anyone, and if you don’t care for yours, you can always grab another.

  11. acilius

     /  March 6, 2009

    Now I’m hungry for Chinese.

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