Tuesday, 27 July 2010


I try to keep this blog updated on a daily basis (I have nothing else going for me at the moment) but my mood has once again hit rock bottom since last week and I just haven't had the inclination. I began the composition of several posts, two about Liturgy (on the magnitude of Pius XII's reforms, only to find that Rorate Caeli had already done so (and far better than my own feeble attempt), and another on the question of the Julian Kalendar - how Liturgy, which is the sanctification of Time, can both transcend Time and be consonant with it), and one about the Papacy (how differently, even in the early Church, the Papacy was seen by east and west), but each was simply cut short because I got ''bored'' with them. The Papacy one basically ended with a discussion about how ''pentarchy'' compromises the Petrine ministry, and how the relationship of Western Christians to their Patriarch in Rome was naturally more ''intense'' than Eastern Christians; the question of language, going back to antiquity, the differences in nuance and meaning between Latin and Greek - Latin being more legalistic in the first place than Greek (it is such a logical language, far more so than English), and how this effected Western theology (St Augustine, greatest of the Latin Fathers, already spoke of the ''Greek church''), and after all this I simply wrote: ''Oh, what's the bloody point'', and I haven't looked at it since. Even more adventurous would be a post about the Filioque, although I am not trained enough in theology for that sort of thing.

Before I went to sleep last night I picked up The Lord of the Rings and began to read it, but got ''bored'' by the end of the second page. This has never happened to me before. I have read The Lord of the Rings countless times since I was 9 years old, and have never once got bored with it, which you might expect given my familiarity with the text. Is ''boredom'' the right word though? How could I possibly be bored with The Lord of the Rings? And now I am being called to do the washing up, which usually takes me at least an hour and a half (which I probably won't finish before I have to go to work), and even though I only do a five hour shift I'll come home feeling exhausted, then more washing up, then bedtime. Since I sleep late now, because I can't sleep at night, I wake up usually by around 1:30pm so I don't eat anything before I go to work, which means that I come close to fainting by the time that my 15 minute break comes around (at around 8:00pm and the only respite from the nightmare), and I don't much like eating Morrison's food so I don't eat anything before I get home at nearly 10:00pm (by which time my brother is fast asleep so I don't see much of him during the week), and I have to finish the washing up...just life's cycles.

Please don't tell me that I ''lack perspective'' - I get enough of this from my parents. Perspective means nothing to the individual, and it's just a veiled way of saying: ''you have no right to complain about your problems because there are others considerably worse off than you''...normal blogging will resume when I can be bothered.


  1. There is no easy answer. From personal experience I am a naturally despondant person myself and therefore easily discouraged. I am going through such a period right now, and my heart is troubled. It is true, "perspective" does not make it any easier. All I can do is remember you in my prayers.

  2. Sorry to hear you are so fed up.

    Happy to buy you a G'n'T on Thursday, if only to relieve the monotomy.

    Breakfast (Brunch), is, to quote the cliche, the most important meal of the day.

  3. This boredom is good! It's telling you not to become a "hobby Christian", perennially exercised over sterile controversies, and therefore perennially dyspeptic. Forget the filioque. Forget the blog for a week. Do something kind and generous without anybody knowing. Forgive all your foes, and ask somebody to forgive you. Pray some psalms and pray for repentance. Read the Gospels - just the Gospels. Fast a little (or treat your hunger as fasting). Be quiet. See you in a little while.

    Prayers from me, too, and for you, Paul.

  4. Thanks all for your comments and prayers etc. I had second thoughts about posting this...that is until a few moments ago my mother asked me how I was, I was frank, and she gave me the now hackneyed: ''you've failed at everything you've ever tried'' speech, and my parents moaning (very audibly) about how it's all my own fault etc. This is why I never tell them anything in the first place! When I feel depressed, I don't want to hear a lecture about how everyone else is worse off than I am.

    Paul, I shall be mindful of you when I am next at Liturgy (probably Sunday). Leutgeb, I think I'll pass your kind offer of G & T on Thursday - I am sure nobody wants to sit and listen to my depressing life all evening.

    Moretben, for most of my life I have read the same books over and over and I liked that - just like Liturgy, it was something constant, rhythmic and ''safe'', and I genuinely find characters in books more interesting than real people (for the most part anyway). Hopefully this boredom will pass in time. I shall take your advice though and read the Psalms - certainly more liturgical of me than to sit at this computer all day!

  5. Patricius

    Jesus takes things away from us when we need reminding to look only for Him. He's taken loads from me, over the years, and then given it back, all sparkling and new. I don't think this ever stops. Going into the desert from time to time is essential.

  6. "When the holy Abba Anthony lived in the desert, he was beset by accidie, and attacked by many sinful thoughts. He said to God, 'Lord, I want to be saved, but these thoughts do not leave me alone; what shall I do in my affliction? How can I be saved?' A short while afterwards, when he got up to go out, Anthony saw a man like himself sitting at his work, getting up from his work to pray, then sitting down and plaiting a rope, then getting up again to pray. It was an angel of the Lord, sent to correct and reassure him. He heard the angel saying to him, 'Do this, and you will be saved.' At these words, Anthony was filled with joy and courage. He did this, and he was saved."

  7. Regarding my current employment, this quote from The Lord of the Rings seems apposite:

    ''A shadow passed over Saruman's face; then it went deathly white. Before he could conceal it, they saw through the mask the anguish of a mind in doubt, loathing to stay and dreading to leave its refuge.'' (The Lord of the Rings, Book III, Chapter X).

  8. I now have to write a blog for work too, which has entirely taken all the fun out of blogging.

  9. I'm thinking of writing something for my own record-which perhaps you could use:

    distinguish between patristic/magisterial/liturgical/monastic/political, etc, trends of catholic traditionalism. In what are they similar, dissimilar,on what do they agree, etc. Again i'm thinking of sketching something like 'The Phenomenology of the Catholicism'. Bishop Lefebvre as a proponent of magisterial traditionalism and Charles Maurras as that of the political trend.

    Compare/contrast the influence of Plato's distinction intelligible and sensual on Aristotle's theory of motion. And its impact on catholic theology, namely Augustine and the Aquinate. It goes without saying this last approach would require serious work - also compare/contrast Nyssa/Aquinas's handling of the Areopagite.

    Yes analytical method and then a synthetic 'proposition'- if such a thing can exist.

  10. Patricius, change of scenery can take one's mind off things and give one a bit of a rest from life's woes.

  11. You know I think you're right Leutgeb, thanks...:)