Thursday, September 15, 2011

twice in one week!

i met my cce class last night. sixth graders. i was a little intimidated. but i shouldn't have been. they were great. i think we'll learn a lot together.

speaking of learning...i've been reading a book called "rediscovering catholicism." i felt, when i first bought it, like a cheater of sort. i wasn't born catholic, so i didn't know that i could actually claim to be REdiscovering catholicism. i always feel like i'm just discovering it in the first place. but it turns out that this is a pretty perfect book for me. i am enjoying it very much.

so here are a couple of quotes i harvested from part 1...

"The cause of much of this confusion is the unprecedented proliferation of words, symbols, images, and every manner of communication in the latter part of the twentieth century. People are tired; they are worn out, overloaded with information, and overwhelmed with the social, political, and economic climate. They are not striving to thrive; they are merely trying to survive. This is a tired culture." (p31)

"Love is the core of Jesus' philosophy. But in order to love you must be free. For to love is to give your self freely and without reservation. Yet, to give your self--to another person, to an endeavor, or to God--you must first possess your self. This possession of self is freedom. It is a prerequisite for love, and is attained only through discipline." (p45)

i also really liked that the author divided our legitimate needs into four categories: physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual. it really meant something to me so actually read emotional needs as a legitimate need.

oh, i also really liked this quote..."Freedom is not the ability to do whatever you want. Freedom is the strength of character and the self-possession to do what is good, true, noble, and right. Therefore, freedom without discipline is impossible. Strength of character is not stumbled upon in life's moments of need and temptation. Character is built little by little, over days, weeks, months, and years, with thousands of small and seemingly insignificant acts of discipline. Self-possession is not an unearned right; it is the privilege of the few who build it, defend it, and celebrate it by disciplining themselves." (p44)

i guess these quotes alone sound really a drill sergeant or something. but the book is really full of a lot of hope and inspiration.

i guess these quotes just stood out to me because i do feel worn out and conflicted and sad about modern culture. not because i think we're all headed to hell in a hand basket because i don't believe that. but because of what that first quote talks about...the surge of communication...and for me, when i look at this culture, particularly the advertising. so much of the communication seen today, by adults and children, is put out there by someone trying to make a profit off of the emotions they're able to appeal to. and while i don't think that's particularly wrong, i do think it can be dangerous. especially when children today often can't tell the difference between a commercial and fact. i know some adults who can't, myself included. and i don't believe it's a question of intelligence. daily, i work through things i've believed that weren't true...things i "bought" from some company who wanted my money. i don't believe those companies ever meant to influence who i am at my core. but because the communication is so pervasive...because we are surrounded by those messages...some of those messages reach further than our pocketbooks.

i know i have referred to my brain before as a spider monkey on speed. so trying to wrestle with it as it flits around all of these images and messages...trying to find some way to control it rather than just deal with the fall out of all that jumping around and sampling and tasting and trying on...that's where this book is helping me. i don't have all the answers yet...or even a couple of them. but i'll sit and read, i'll pray, i'll exercise, and i'll love. i may never be an extremely learned or accomplished woman, but i will master the basics.


No comments: