patty kirk

patty kirk lying down, getting up, sitting at home, walking down the road doing deuteronomy 6:7

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

is alligator fish or meat?

Fasting seems to be out of fashion anymore. Even during Lent. Or, did fasting use to be—like during Jesus’ forty day fast in the desert—something other than what I think of when I think of fasting: namely, eating nothing?

Here’s the evidence. Used to, Christians fasted, apparently. Otherwise, why would Jesus go on about how to do it right? Here’s what he says: “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:16-18 NIV).

Fasting was once common, evidently. And reward-worthy (if performed correctly).

But what was that fasting? Was it, as today among Catholics, that people abstained from meat every Friday during Lent. Or ever Friday throughout the year, as was the case in New Orleans, when I lived there? Or did people, regularly and ostentatiously refrain from eating altogether?

I’ve been hearing, lately, of hunger strikes in the news. And it’s Lent, so there was a report on the radio about whether, for Catholics who don't eat meat on Fridays during Lent, the alligator was considered a fish, and could thus be consumed on Fridays, or a mammal, and thus couldn’t. (Answer: fish; can be eaten).

And, in my yoga class, I recently underwent a fast of sorts: we were only allowed to eat fruit for three days. They called it a fruit cleanse, but I refused to use that terminology, which makes me think of defecation and anorexics.

The fruit fast was hard, especially on day 2. My stomach growled even as I was eating. But day three was better, and afterwards, I felt so different. Clean.

Not saying much of anything here, I fear. I feel all blogged up. And I missed a day, yesterday. Oh well. Just a few more days till Easter!

1 comment:

  1. Fasting IS out of fashion. We are not a society given to personal discomfort.