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Pseudo Lent

I am a day late for posting what intends to be a series of posts chronicling my experience of lent, the Christian season of preparation for Easter.

In my childhood home I remember lent as a time for giving up things that were really fun or delicious, like tv or chocolate. It’s a time for reflection. How giving up chocolate gets in the way of reflection, I can’t say I understand, but I do appreciate the benefits of living without comforts whilst doing activities which cultivate mindfulness and holistic serenity.

Each Spring for the last 4 years, I do a nutritional cleanse. This year I’ve decided to combine the cleanse with lent.

Comforts I’m doing without until Easter Sunday, April 20, 2014: Caffeine, Dairy, Sugar, Wheat

Practice I’m picking up until Easter Sunday: Writing daily (which is intended to resurrect this blog and find out what it wants to be) for 20 minutes. Accumulated time on text messages, emails and work documents don’t count.

Today being Day 1, it will be forty-six days of a daily writing practice and 45 days without caffeine, dairy, sugar or wheat – that’s right, I’m having a croissant and a cappuccino on Easter Sunday!

In the spirit of Jesus’ time in the desert, it is the 40 days and 40 nights that I’m going for (not necessarily consecutive). I figure this allows for human imperfection.

Why am I doing this if I don’t identify as being Christian? Well, regardless of whether or not I believe in the grand narrative of Jesus’ birth, life, death and resurrection, there seems to be some principles in how he lived that are worthwhile reflecting upon.

And I guess I do it for a ritual to make the season of Spring and Easter meaningful, the way we do with Christmas and Winter Solstice.

Hhmm, I wonder if Jesus gave up meaning-making while he was in the desert. Maybe “the devil” was really an spout of psychosis because he hadn’t had anything to drink or eat. I wonder how different our world would look today if Jesus was medicated and put in a psych ward with a diagnosis.

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