The Inner Struggle

Let not your heart be troubled …

The Return Of The King” Howard Shore, composer, from the soundtrack of “The Return Of The King”, part 3 of “The Lord Of The Rings”, released on December 17th, 2003.

“The Return Of The King”, part 3 of “The Lord Of The Rings”, released on December 17th, 2003

“The Return Of The King”, part 3 of “The Lord Of The Rings”, released on December 17th, 2003

Maybe Gentle Reader is wondering what the heck I am going on about with all this talk of contrition, and remorse and seeing things spiritually?

What is the point of my meanderings about reality and the “ghost in the shell” and seeing the material from the spiritual perspective as my soul?

What it all is about is that I am looking for a framework which makes identifying attachments easier, and after identifying these attachments, to make it a more straightforward exercise in discipline and mortification to separate myself from these objects of desire and gratification.

And the Season of Lent seems an appropriate time to consider the “end of all things”, fasting and other ways of identifying attachments that get in the way of seeing God as our eternal end …

The Front Porch of Lent: Easing Into the Lenten Fast

It was common for early Christians to begin the Lenten fast immediately after Septuagesima Sunday (nominally 70 days before Easter). Just as Lent today begins 46 days before Easter, since Sundays are never a day of fasting (see “How Are the 40 Days of Lent Calculated?“), so, in the early Church, Saturdays and Thursdays were considered fast-free days, and Friday, of course, was a “fasting from meat” day, as any cradle Catholic older than 50 years or so can tell you.

I remember when that particular item was supposedly dropped, “in the spirit of Vatican II” and George Carlin brought out a live comedy album in 1972 that mocked various Catholic practices, although George, as an ex Catholic, could be said to be an equal opportunity mocker. This skit “I used to be an Irish Catholic” had a line “ … I bet there are still guys doin’ time on the meat rap“. Parochial school humour – unique to Catholics?

Class Clown

By Source, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3453565, This is the cover art for the album Class Clown by the artist George Carlin. The cover art copyright is believed to belong to the label, Little David / Atlantic, or the graphic artist(s).

I remember George was funny as hell … and I enjoyed his humour … that 1972 album was called “Class Clown” and I could identify ’cause I was one – woohoo – “#1 Class Clown”, one of the “back of the classroom tribe” sometimes known as “tree people” because we used to climb the trees outside Jarry Park to watch the Expos play for free.

Flashbacks … that was about the time I went off on my own personal diversion from the faith … for about 20 years … seems a kind of common thing with my generation … except I suspect coming back is rather less common, but there ya go.

Then (1971) came my sharp right turn over to joining the evil military without even hitting the “Group W Bench” in between. Remember “Alice’s Restaurant”? Just about gives me whiplash today thinking back. I wonder how George felt about his Catholic faith just before he died at age 71, in 2008?

But anyway, back to fasting and Friday meat fasts … in order to fit in 40 days of fasting before Easter, therefore, the fast had to start two weeks earlier than it does today.

Another quirk, … (is that the right word?) in the celebration of the traditional Latin Mass, starting on Septuagesima Sunday, neither the Alleluia nor the Gloria are sung. (See Why Don’t Roman Catholics Sing the Alleluia During Lent?) They do not return until the Easter Vigil, when we mark the triumph of Christ over death in His Resurrection.

So fasting, and no Alleluia or Gloria … focused on “the end of all things” just where are we going … after this short night in a bad hotel?

But this is really about “Let not your heart be troubled” …

Douay-Rheims Bible (John 14)
Jesus Comforts the Disciples

Jesus Christ

Jesus Christ

1Let not your heart be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in me. 2In my Father’s house there are many mansions. If not, I would have told you: because I go to prepare a place for you.

3And if I shall go, and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and will take you to myself; that where I am, you also may be. 4And whither I go you know, and the way you know.

The Way, the Truth, and the Life

The Apostle Thomas

The Apostle Thomas

5Thomas saith to him: Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? 6Jesus saith to him: I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No man cometh to the Father, but by me.

7If you had known me, you would without doubt have known my Father also: and from henceforth you shall know him, and you have seen him.

8Philip saith to him: Lord, shew us the Father, and it is enough for us. 9Jesus saith to him: Have I been so long a time with you; and have you not known me? Philip, he that seeth me seeth the Father also. How sayest thou, Shew us the Father?

the Apostle Philip

The Apostle Philip

10Do you not believe, that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? The words that I speak to you, I speak not of myself. But the Father who abideth in me, he doth the works.

11Believe you not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? 12Otherwise believe for the very works’ sake. Amen, amen I say to you, he that believeth in me, the works that I do, he also shall do; and greater than these shall he do.

13Because I go to the Father: and whatsoever you shall ask the Father in my name, that will I do: that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14If you shall ask me any thing in my name, that I will do.

Jesus Promises the Holy Spirit

(Joel 2:28-32; John 16:5-16; Acts 2:1-13; Acts 10:44-48; Acts 19:1-7)

15If you love me, keep my commandments.

16And I will ask the Father, and he shall give you another Paraclete, that he may abide with you for ever. 17The spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, nor knoweth him: but you shall know him; because he shall abide with you, and shall be in you.

18I will not leave you orphans, I will come to you. 19Yet a little while: and the world seeth me no more. But you see me: because I live, and you shall live. 20In that day you shall know, that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.

21He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them; he it is that loveth me. And he that loveth me, shall be loved of my Father: and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. 22Judas saith to him, not the Iscariot: Lord, how is it, that thou wilt manifest thyself to us, and not to the world?

23Jesus answered, and said to him: If any one love me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and will make our abode with him. 24He that loveth me not, keepeth not my words. And the word which you have heard, is not mine; but the Father’s who sent me.

25These things have I spoken to you, abiding with you. 26But the Paraclete, the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring all things to your mind, whatsoever I shall have said to you.

Peace I Leave with You

(Romans 5:1-5)

27Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, do I give unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid. 28You have heard that I said to you: I go away, and I come unto you. If you loved me, you would indeed be glad, because I go to the Father: for the Father is greater than I.

29And now I have told you before it comes to pass: that when it shall come to pass, you may believe. 30I will not now speak many things with you. For the prince of this world cometh, and in me he hath not any thing. 31But that the world may know, that I love the Father: and as the Father hath given me commandment, so do I: Arise, let us go hence.

Douay-Rheims Bible

Cheers

Joe

25These things have I spoken to you, abiding with you. 26But the Paraclete, the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring all things to your mind, whatsoever I shall have said to you.

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