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(2/24/04 2:18 am)
Personal sacrifices for the season of Lent
Good Day, Good People!

Wednesday begins the season of Lent. On this day, in Christian churches, both Protestant and Catholic, people will be going to services to have a cross of ash marked on their forhead. It is a symbol of the burning away of desires, the nonattachment to the things of the world.

The traditional practices for this period of 40 days from Ash Wednesday to Easter, which encompasses the most important days in the Christian year (easter, palm sunday, passover, Good Friday), were fasting, prayer, and acts of charity to the poor. Today, most people have basically given up the fasting (for Catholics, a fast of only one meal throughout the day is still required on Good Friday and Ash Wed.), but it has become a tradition to "give something up for Lent".

It has been many years since I got involved in this practice, and even back when I was a kid, being from a Protestant family, the whole thing wasn't well explained to me, nor was it really honored to any real degree. So, since I've found a calling to understand the Mystical aspects of Christianity more deeply, I'm "giving something up" for Lent. I'm going on an "entertainment fast."

What am I proposing? Well, I bought tickets to the opening show of Mel Gibson's new movie for Wed morning, and after that, I'm not going to go to the movies, rent a video, watch TV or play games on my computer for the next month-and-a-half. I have been feeling lately that these things (especially my computer and the evils of the MSN Gaming Zone) have been pulling me away from a deeper appreciation of my Sadhana, and this is the perfect opportunity to deepen my relationship with Master and with Jesus.

Why did I start this thread? Well, I feel like we spend a lot of time rejecting or re-evaluating the spiritual practices as SRF has handed them down to us, so maybe we should look into finding the value in those which have existed for much longer. Master said that he was trying to reinvigorate "Original Christianity," so I'm trying to feel Christ's spirit in the practices I was raised with. This is my charge to all of you. Try taking a spiritual practice that you were rasied with, perhaps one which you've long-ago discarded... Pick it up, dust it off, and try to find the True spirit of God in it. We've got Christian devotees of Kriya Yoga (Abbot Burke), Hindu devotees of Kriya (most of them), Jewish ones (etzchaim and the other devotees of the Temple of Kriya Yoga), and all those in between (Ananda, SRF, Roy Davis' people, Song of the Morning in Northern Michigan)... Let's all look back to our youths, to the religion we've left behind, and reclaim one aspect of it... Make it our own... Better yet, make it MASTER'S!

Shanti, Shalom, PAX, Peace!

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