Lent is just far enough into the year, where most if not all the new Year resolutions went to crap. We usually either find ourselves cheating by now, or in my case, I don’t even make them anymore. Lent gives us that second chance, and it is our redemption to the resolution of failures. It’s our chance to give up something in our lives. Suppose to be something we enjoy, though, a sacrifice for 40 days.
This year it starts on what’s called “Ash” Wednesday, March 5, 2014. (For Catholics in the Eastern rite of the Church, Lent begins on Monday, March 3rd.) If one follows through, it’ll last until Easter Sunday, April 20, 2014. (Fun fact about April 20th- Hitler was born on this date, also shout out to all the chronics out there for 420.)
The word Lent itself is derived from the Anglo-Saxon words lenten, meaning “Spring,” and lenctentid, which literally means not only “Springtide” but also was the word for “March,” the month in which it usually falls on.
Growing up in a Christian household, I found it rather fun for some reason to give something up for the 40 days. I was taught from a very young age. I had to give something up concerning this Jesus guy who fasted during this time.
Most importantly, he fasted and prayed for “40 days and 40 nights” in the desert before beginning his public ministry (Mt 4:2). There was only a handful of times where I would actually totally follow through. Most years, I cheated, but what I would call minor slips.
Jesus spent fasting in the Judean desert before the beginning of his public ministry, where he endured temptation by the devil. However, different Christian denominations calculate the forty days of Lent differently. In most Western traditions, Sundays are not counted as part of Lent since Sundays are always the weekly anniversary of the resurrection and exempt from fasting or abstinence from meat; thus, the period from Ash Wednesday until Easter consists of 40 days when the Sundays are excluded. However, in the Roman Catholic Church, Lent is now taken to end on Holy Thursday rather than Easter Eve and lasts 38 days excluding Sundays or 44 days. The Thursday before Easter is known as Maunday, or Holy Thursday, and is a day Christians commemorate the Last Supper shared by Christ with his disciples. The next day is Good Friday, on which Christians remember Jesus’ crucifixion and burial. 3 days later, this magic man came back to life, Tada!! He’s back!!
My point of view has changed now from what it was as a child and young teen. The way it’s viewed by me now is that the bible is filled with a lot of fun fairy tales, fables, and great meanings behind them. Stories such as where Lent originated from, I don’t buy into it at all. You can’t expect me to believe that a guy fasted in a desert for 40 days, was killed, then somehow came back to life days later. It’s based upon a book multiple people wrote thousands of years ago in a language I don’t speak, translated and rewritten multiple times. I find it hard to fathom that the stories haven’t changed from the time written until now. It is like that game telephone you play in school. By the time the word or sentence makes it to the last kid, it’s totally different, usually altered by the 2nd or 3rd kid in.
The Bible is based on forgiveness. Look at one of the first stories with God’s other son Lucifer. He turned and never got forgave. Got sent to the lake of fire, what we all know as hell. I understand he probably never wanted to change, but I feel they never gave him a fair chance and didn’t put the necessary time into changing him.
In my opinion, Christianity has brainwashed millions of people right from childhood into following their sets of rules based upon make-believe. They set up these institutions worldwide for people to teach them that their way is the only way to live. If you don’t, you are going to hell. It’s a very closed-minded mentality that puts a lot of fear into us, very cult-like. Not to mention supporting them financially usually costs about 10% of your total income or whatever denomination you decide to give.
They don’t pay taxes, and they own massive amounts of land worldwide. According to Professor Ryan T. Cragun, along with students Stephanie Yeager and Desmond Vega from the University of Tampa, they ran some calculations. They figured out they make $71 billion a year worldwide. Weird how some pastors are living in multimillion-dollar mansions. They live a very luxurious lifestyle. That’s no secret, and I found multiple sources on the net exposing these guys.
It’s not all entirely bad, though… I guess they do some good work for people around the world. People from that organization help feeding the less fortunate, building houses and schools.
I still have a spiritual side that I’ve been working on the best I can. I believe in a higher power. I think there are probably multiple gods of all sorts. I think there is a great place we all go after death, whether were good or bad. Some may have a more difficult time transitioning if one does harmful, destructive things well they’re alive on earth. Just remember we’re just energy, and it can’t be destroyed, only altered.
This year I have decided to participate in Lent. I believe it’s good to challenge oneself self, helps build character. So as of Wednesday till Easter and hopefully even beyond, I’ll be giving up – Gluten, refined sugars and microwaves. I’ve been slowly cutting them out of my diet so it won’t be too big of a shock when the time comes. Some real western world problems. It’ll be a challenge, but it’ll be nothing but a rewarding experience.
Although I may not agree with religion and most of the things they are doing and have done in the past, it is fun participating in some of their crazy games. Challenge yourself often—peace Out.
“The Christian Church is an encyclopedia of prehistoric cults.” – Friedrich Nietzche.
“Whoever wishes to be my follower must deny his very self, take up his cross each day, and follow in my steps.” -Luke 9:23