“How was your weekend? Tell me all about it!”
Go away, humans…
“MO-OM! It’s not fair that he gets to clean only ONE room when I have to clean the guest room AND the hallway!” “Where my britches? I need some britches.” “The FAMILY ROOM is TWICE as big as the guest room and THREE TIMES as messy!” “Excuse me, ma’am, I wanted to let you know about an exciting once-in-a-lifetime opportunity available to you and your neighbors…” “I NEED SOME BRITCHES MA-MA.”
The Weekend of Art was such a magnificently non-corporeal experience. I get the appeal of gnosticism. Given my druthers, I would certainly choose existence as pure mind, interacting with the creators and appreciators of beauty, having someone else make my sandwiches. Except not sandwiches, because as I growled at my child upon walking back in the door, “I DON’T EAT SANDWICHES!” (flings self on fainting couch)
The clincher, though, the thing that really made it all work, was the Liturgy of the Hours. Before, I’d considered the Liturgy of the Hours a good thing to have around, up on a shelf, in case I ever felt like being more Catholic up in here. But it seemed a little like – overkill, maybe? Like, I’m doing fine without this structure imposed on my day, man, and you might say there’s benefit to joining in the ancient prayer of the Church and marking the hours, but hey, man, that’s just, like, your opinion, man.
See. Even the Dude agrees.
IRONICALLY HOWEVER, the Dude is directly linked to another experience I had with the Liturgy of the Hours – our visit to a monastery in Pecos, New Mexico a few years back. (The same monastery where they filmed Crazy Heart with Jeff Bridges).
So here we see the internal tension between monasticism and dude-ness. As I crashed and burned, so, so hard this week, a little voice in the back of my head has been saying irritating things like “An orderly life is conducive to virtue” and “you will feel greater peace if you step away from the carbs and shine your sink” and “Seriously, you can spend 15 minutes on Twitter in the morning but can’t pull up the Liturgy of the Hours on your phone?”
Fundamentally, though, the praying of the Liturgy of the Hours wasn’t the basis of the weekend because it’s somehow what we Ought to Do Because We Follow Rules. It’s more like a regimen that roots you in the eternal. You both step outside your daily activities to immerse yourself in the timeless prayer of the Church, and wake up to what you are doing right at that time of the day – asking for grace in that present moment. I’m veering dangerously close to using language like “nourish your spirit” that I first learned when selling candles, so perhaps I should just say “oh, it’s gloriously ineffable!” and leave it at that.
Mrs. Duffy, my sister in acedia, seems to have similar resolve of late.
I’ve grown a bit tired of my slacker posture. Saturday afternoon, not looking at the clock until 6 P.M., and darn, I’ve missed Confession again. I look at pictures on Facebook or blogs of the beautiful meals other people are eating for dinner, and I smirk a bit to myself about how they haven’t captured for all of posterity their child misbehaving, or a fight they’ve had with their spouse. No, they’ve captured the sun shining on their ethnic cuisine. Well don’t they have it good? They must have their stuff together. I don’t have my stuff together, but at least . . . I’m approachable—right? I’m O.K. Click, click.
I really liked Sally Thomas’ description of acedia as ” a tiny little chronic not-quite-pain that you get used to, and eventually arrange your entire life to accommodate” in the discussion in the comments. That’s just it.
Oh, the world is crashing around me, because WHOSE JOB is it to CLEAN THE STAIRCASE, mom?!?!?!? So I should lift my carb-fortified self from this chair and bust out the steam mop, at least until it’s time for…lauds? No, Lauds are in the morning…terce? Anyone?