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Author Topic: For Roman Catholics of England & Wales, Friday abstention from meat begins  (Read 10708 times) Average Rating: 0
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elijahmaria
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« Reply #90 on: October 17, 2011, 08:32:46 PM »



My family was largely Irish, French, German and Jansenistic.

Apparently, thankfully, we all missed the last part.
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J Michael
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« Reply #91 on: October 18, 2011, 11:33:37 AM »

It would be very easy to become Pharisaical about fasting, either in Orthodoxy or Catholicism.  Fasting is a means, not an end.  To adhere to every jot and tittle of the rules for fasting from food can quickly makes us into pharisees.  I have always been taught that we are to fast from *sin* and that the fasts involving food items were just an aid to help remind us of that and to bring us closer to that ideal.  I can only imagine that that is why in the Catholic Church we are encouraged to partake of other penitential practices if we are unable, for whatever reason, to fast from food.  The only exception to this that I can think of at the moment would be the pre-communion fast.

The only way we can avoid sin is to pray and fast. The two go together.
I hate to bring this up, but many Catholics have suggested that the huge pedophilia scandal is due to the lack of fasting, and hence inability to say NO to sin.


This is something I've never heard before, and was wondering if there is **any** evidence anywhere to back that up.  Not speculation, but evidence.  And remember, correlation does not equal causation.

(If the mods want to move this to a separate thread, that's fine by me  Wink)

Why do we fast? Is it not to say NO to sin: any and all sins (including sins of passion)?

Why do the monastics abstain from meat throughout the year, only having fish on special feast days?
They do battle against their passions.

What is the main amino acid in meat products that stimulates the passions? l-Carnitine?
Scientific studies of primates indicates that certain primates need to indulge in meat in order to mate, conceive, and then bring to fruition healthy offspring. I have lost the link to one of these studies, but a search using any college search engines will bring that one up. Right now, I do not have access to a college computer.

Then ask yourself, has the pedophilia epidemic improved or become worse since Vatican II and the dismal changes in the rules of fast and abstinence?

Why was the Friday Abstinence once again imposed on the people of England and Wales?
Was it punishment, or was there another reason?

FINALLY, I will say this:

The Friday abstinence is TOO LITTLE and TOO LATE.
Having the laity observe abstinence only one day a week is inconsequential.
Observing the Ancient Fast on Wednesdays and Fridays is better.
Observing the Nativity Fast and Great Lenten fast to the best of one's ability would be very helpful.

I wasn't asking why we fast, and I agree that we do so for our spiritual benefit, and out of obedience to the Church.

I wasn't asking why monastics fast.  I'm aware of the reasons.  The *vast* majority of us are not monastics.

L-Carnitine?  Really??  That's why we sin??  Paleeeze!!  L-carnitine plays an important role in energy production by chaperoning activated fatty acids (acyl-CoA) into the mitochondrial matrix.  In other words it helps to store and increase energy.  Meat eaters tend to get more of it than those who do not eat meat.  Is energy used for sexual activity?  Well...duh!  Are there more meat eaters on the planet than vegetarians/vegans?  Don't know.  Is there a causal relationship between l-carnitine levels and  the number of human carnivores on the planet compared to the number of vegetarians?  I doubt it, but since you bring it up, prove it.  Oh yes, here's one for you--were Adam and Eve carnivores, omnivores, or vegetarians?  Did they just grill a steak before eating the apple??  C'mon!!!  News Flash!!--"L-Carnitine inflames the passions and causes sin!!"  Give me a break!!!

You write, "Then ask yourself, has the pedophilia epidemic improved or become worse since Vatican II and the dismal changes in the rules of fast and abstinence?"  Do you have reliable statistics for the **proven** incidence of pedophilia amongst Catholic priests prior to Vatican II?  Did you not know that the incidence of pedophilia (using your term as a catch-all for sexual abuse, not very accurately by the way) amongst Protestant ministers, teachers, and other segments of U.S. society has been said to be at least the same as, if not far greater than, that *reported* (and not all reports are true) of Catholic priests? 

I asked for *evidence*, NOT speculation or correlational logic to back up your statement that the pedophilia scandal is due to a lack of fasting, and you have provided.....none.  If you are unable to do so, just say so.  No one will hold it against you.  If you do have reliable evidence, let's see it!

Now, I will concede one point about that, and one only--the more we pray and fast, *especially* if under some form of good spiritual direction, the less we *may* sin.  But, it sure isn't a hard and fast arithmetical or mathematical equation like 1+1 *always*=2.  No guarantee.  None.

You say, "having the laity observe abstinence one day a week is inconsequential".  Now, *there's* a leap!  How do you *know* this??  Sounds pretty judgmental to me.

You say the Friday abstinence is too little, too late.  Perhaps as a "rule" of the Church.  Perhaps more fasting *is* better, and I would tend to agree with that.  But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!

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« Reply #92 on: October 18, 2011, 12:58:45 PM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink
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J Michael
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« Reply #93 on: October 18, 2011, 01:08:29 PM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink

Please explain  Wink.  You're being all cryptic again  Wink.  Or I'm being all dense again  Wink.  I will, of course, yield to the desert fathers, but please show me what I'm yielding about.
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« Reply #94 on: October 18, 2011, 02:03:35 PM »

There is nothing wrong with the passions.
If we did not have them, then our race would not have continued.

It is the lack of control and inappropriate use which is the problem.
So, these passions are brought under control through prayer, fasting, and guarding our senses.


« Last Edit: October 18, 2011, 02:06:00 PM by Maria » Logged

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« Reply #95 on: October 18, 2011, 02:27:26 PM »

There is nothing wrong with the passions.
If we did not have them, then our race would not have continued.

It is the lack of control and inappropriate use which is the problem.
So, these passions are brought under control through prayer, fasting, and guarding our senses.




You'll get no argument (or 'outrage'  Grin) from me about that.  At all!

My argument with you has to do with your statement about "many" Catholics suggesting a causal relationship between the "pedophilia scandal" and lack of fasting more post-VII "pedophilia" than pre-VII, something which I'd never heard before or read, may or may not have some merit to it.  Etc., etc., etc.  Wink

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« Reply #96 on: October 18, 2011, 03:31:32 PM »

There is nothing wrong with the passions.
If we did not have them, then our race would not have continued.

It is the lack of control and inappropriate use which is the problem.
So, these passions are brought under control through prayer, fasting, and guarding our senses.




You'll get no argument (or 'outrage'  Grin) from me about that.  At all!

My argument with you has to do with your statement about "many" Catholics suggesting a causal relationship between the "pedophilia scandal" and lack of fasting more post-VII "pedophilia" than pre-VII, something which I'd never heard before or read, may or may not have some merit to it.  Etc., etc., etc.  Wink



Why don't you start another thread or resurrect another thread that deals with this topic?

This thread is on the topic of fasting, and fasting is known to help people control their demons (passions).
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« Reply #97 on: October 18, 2011, 05:29:25 PM »

There is nothing wrong with the passions.
If we did not have them, then our race would not have continued.

It is the lack of control and inappropriate use which is the problem.
So, these passions are brought under control through prayer, fasting, and guarding our senses.




You'll get no argument (or 'outrage'  Grin) from me about that.  At all!

My argument with you has to do with your statement about "many" Catholics suggesting a causal relationship between the "pedophilia scandal" and lack of fasting more post-VII "pedophilia" than pre-VII, something which I'd never heard before or read, may or may not have some merit to it.  Etc., etc., etc.  Wink



Why don't you start another thread or resurrect another thread that deals with this topic?

This thread is on the topic of fasting, and fasting is known to help people control their demons (passions).


Okay, here it is:    http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,40418.0.html
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« Reply #98 on: October 18, 2011, 06:46:46 PM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink

Please explain  Wink.  You're being all cryptic again  Wink.  Or I'm being all dense again  Wink.  I will, of course, yield to the desert fathers, but please show me what I'm yielding about.

The desert fathers recommend fasting for the sins of anger in particular but also as a way of helping to control lust.
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« Reply #99 on: October 18, 2011, 09:56:41 PM »

Statistically speaking I would have no doubts that abuses of every manner including the homosexual pedophilia attributed to priests rose exponentially after VII.

Priests who have lived through it have also testified to it directly to me.

It is a combination of errors and forsaking of tradition which contribute to the ravishing of the church. May it return to its true glory and orthodoxy.
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J Michael
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« Reply #100 on: October 19, 2011, 10:02:54 AM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink

Please explain  Wink.  You're being all cryptic again  Wink.  Or I'm being all dense again  Wink.  I will, of course, yield to the desert fathers, but please show me what I'm yielding about.

The desert fathers recommend fasting for the sins of anger in particular but also as a way of helping to control lust.

If I have sinned against anyone in my anger, I beg forgiveness.

Ephesians 4:25-27 comes to mind: [25]Therefore, putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.
[26] Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,
[27] and give no opportunity to the devil.


Thanks for the reminder  Wink!

JM
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« Reply #101 on: October 19, 2011, 12:55:59 PM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink

Please explain  Wink.  You're being all cryptic again  Wink.  Or I'm being all dense again  Wink.  I will, of course, yield to the desert fathers, but please show me what I'm yielding about.

The desert fathers recommend fasting for the sins of anger in particular but also as a way of helping to control lust.

If I have sinned against anyone in my anger, I beg forgiveness.

Ephesians 4:25-27 comes to mind: [25]Therefore, putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.
[26] Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,
[27] and give no opportunity to the devil.


Thanks for the reminder  Wink!

JM

Modern ideas of "proof" often preclude the wisdom of the ancients...as though human nature has altered over the generations.   Sure...there are going to be sexual predators who will not at all be moved by fasting to some other way of being in the world.  But for the average person, a reduction of food intake and restriction of some food kinds is a restraint.  Nothing is automatic without work.
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J Michael
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« Reply #102 on: October 19, 2011, 02:08:00 PM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink

Please explain  Wink.  You're being all cryptic again  Wink.  Or I'm being all dense again  Wink.  I will, of course, yield to the desert fathers, but please show me what I'm yielding about.

The desert fathers recommend fasting for the sins of anger in particular but also as a way of helping to control lust.

If I have sinned against anyone in my anger, I beg forgiveness.

Ephesians 4:25-27 comes to mind: [25]Therefore, putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.
[26] Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,
[27] and give no opportunity to the devil.


Thanks for the reminder  Wink!

JM

Modern ideas of "proof" often preclude the wisdom of the ancients...as though human nature has altered over the generations.   Sure...there are going to be sexual predators who will not at all be moved by fasting to some other way of being in the world.  But for the average person, a reduction of food intake and restriction of some food kinds is a restraint.  Nothing is automatic without work.

No argument about that.

Putting aside any thoughts about L-Carnitine ( Grin) as some kind of causal agent ( Grin Grin), it occurs to me (in my momentary boredom) that the benefits of fasting *may* derive more from the *act* of fasting and all that that implies both psychologically and spiritually and ritually than it does with what is being specifically abstained from.  I do *not* state that as fact nor do I know if it's true.  But, although humans have consumed meat for thousands of years, has it not been the case that for most people in most societies (especially pre-industrial western societies) meat and other high protein animal products have been expensive, difficult to obtain, and consumed far less frequently than other food products?  Has it not been the case that for the vast majority of people meat was a special food, a delicacy almost, most of the time?  If indeed, that's the case, did those people struggle less with their passions or sin less than those who now eat lots of meat on most days?  Do people who live vegetarian or vegan lifestyles or in societies where meat is a special food sin less than the rest of us?  I don't have the answers, that's why I'm asking.  (These are just the musings of a little mind with too much time  Grin).
« Last Edit: October 19, 2011, 02:22:55 PM by J Michael » Logged

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« Reply #103 on: October 19, 2011, 02:34:41 PM »

But what do you know of the fasting habits of British Catholics and their  level of sin?  And again, please, evidence not speculation.  I'll repeat, correlation does NOT equal causation!



The desert fathers will not support your...'outrage'... Wink

Please explain  Wink.  You're being all cryptic again  Wink.  Or I'm being all dense again  Wink.  I will, of course, yield to the desert fathers, but please show me what I'm yielding about.

The desert fathers recommend fasting for the sins of anger in particular but also as a way of helping to control lust.

If I have sinned against anyone in my anger, I beg forgiveness.

Ephesians 4:25-27 comes to mind: [25]Therefore, putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.
[26] Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,
[27] and give no opportunity to the devil.


Thanks for the reminder  Wink!

JM

Modern ideas of "proof" often preclude the wisdom of the ancients...as though human nature has altered over the generations.   Sure...there are going to be sexual predators who will not at all be moved by fasting to some other way of being in the world.  But for the average person, a reduction of food intake and restriction of some food kinds is a restraint.  Nothing is automatic without work.

No argument about that.

Putting aside any thoughts about L-Carnitine ( Grin) as some kind of causal agent ( Grin Grin), it occurs to me (in my momentary boredom) that the benefits of fasting *may* derive more from the *act* of fasting and all that that implies both psychologically and spiritually and ritually than it does with what is being specifically abstained from.  I do *not* state that as fact nor do I know if it's true.  But, although humans have consumed meat for thousands of years, has it not been the case that for most people in most societies (especially pre-industrial western societies) meat and other high protein animal products have been expensive, difficult to obtain, and consumed far less frequently than other food products?  Has it not been the case that for the vast majority of people meat was a special food, a delicacy almost, most of the time?  If indeed, that's the case, did those people struggle less with their passions or sin less than those who now eat lots of meat on most days?  Do people who live vegetarian or vegan lifestyles or in societies where meat is a special food sin less than the rest of us?  I don't have the answers, that's why I'm asking.  (These are just the musings of a little mind with too much time  Grin).

There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week.
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« Reply #104 on: October 19, 2011, 04:34:01 PM »

"There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week."

Well because we are used to getting these foods on a regular basis while even well to do people back in those days did not, does in fact make it more difficult to refrain from such foods. Im buggin right now and yes I do the vegan like fast(save crab or shrimp when I can afford it) I loathe it to be honest and in some ways it doesnt make sense to do it exactly the same because times have changed. They let you eat crab and shrimp back in the day because of the fact they were easy access and cheap. The fatted calf was like stated before a delicacy and to be eaten for a great celebration, not as some variant of a stoffer meal. You couldnt even get fish during the middle of the week because the boats didnt come back until the weekend. So that was something that was already difficult to get but part of the fasting regiment, probably so fat cats wouldnt live it up all the time and general discipline for the not so well to doers who might think of splurging. Now its flipped flopped. For some reason crab and shrimp are the delicacies and high priced while a hamburger or fish sandwich can be got for cheap and easily. So guys doing the fast now have to spend a little bit more than they might normally for food especially if they lack the means to prepare it themselves (unless they just get some ramen or something like that. thats what I do. Ramen, cheap oatmeal and some protein powder which kills the taste of the oatmeal.). Aladdin's aint cheap... neither all these soup and bread places.  

 Part of the reason the fast was mitigated is because of abuses. Fish Friday was an excuse to go to red lobster and fat it up. Perhaps though instead of mitigating it, they should have explained the fast to their parishoners and why they are doing it so the purpose of the fast wasnt negated due to buffet mentality Americans. Once again the Church has a long way to go in fixing its discipline and compromised spirituality. I hope like Heresies which raged in the east that were eventually quelled and destroyed (accept for that whole mohammedan thing but that was their own entity), things will get back to normal for the Catholic Church; but unfortunately I have my doubts.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2011, 04:46:42 PM by KShaft » Logged
J Michael
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« Reply #105 on: October 19, 2011, 04:44:56 PM »

"There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week."

Well because we are used to getting these foods on a regular basis while even well to do people back in those days did not, does in fact make it more difficult to refrain from such foods. Im buggin right now and yes I do the vegan like fast(save crab or shrimp when I can afford it) I loathe it to be honest and in some ways it doesnt make sense to do it exactly the same because times have changed. They let you eat crab and shrimp back in the day because of the fact they were easy access and cheap. The fatted calf was like stated before a delicacy and to be eaten for a great celebration, not as some variant of a stoffer meal. You couldnt even get fish during the middle of the week because the boats didnt come back until the weekend. So that was something that was already difficult to get but part of the fasting regiment, probably so fat cats wouldnt live it up all the time and general discipline for the not so well to doers who might think of splurging. Now its flipped flopped. For some reason crab and shrimp are the delicacies and high priced while a hamburger or fish sandwich can be got for cheap and easily. So guys doing the fast now have to spend a little bit more than they might normally for food especially if they lack the means to prepare it themselves (unless they just get some ramen or something like that). Aladins aint cheap... niether all these soup and bread places.   

Where I live shell fish is really quite cheap.  In many cases, especially if canned (yuck!), cheaper than meat.  But none of that addresses my questions above about whether the benefits of fasting are derived from the *act* of fasting or from fasting from particular substances, etc., etc., etc.
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« Reply #106 on: October 19, 2011, 04:53:10 PM »

"There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week."

Well because we are used to getting these foods on a regular basis while even well to do people back in those days did not, does in fact make it more difficult to refrain from such foods. Im buggin right now and yes I do the vegan like fast(save crab or shrimp when I can afford it) I loathe it to be honest and in some ways it doesnt make sense to do it exactly the same because times have changed. They let you eat crab and shrimp back in the day because of the fact they were easy access and cheap. The fatted calf was like stated before a delicacy and to be eaten for a great celebration, not as some variant of a stoffer meal. You couldnt even get fish during the middle of the week because the boats didnt come back until the weekend. So that was something that was already difficult to get but part of the fasting regiment, probably so fat cats wouldnt live it up all the time and general discipline for the not so well to doers who might think of splurging. Now its flipped flopped. For some reason crab and shrimp are the delicacies and high priced while a hamburger or fish sandwich can be got for cheap and easily. So guys doing the fast now have to spend a little bit more than they might normally for food especially if they lack the means to prepare it themselves (unless they just get some ramen or something like that). Aladins aint cheap... niether all these soup and bread places.   

Rice and beans. It's the staple food of most of Latin America and India. Billions of people sustain themselves on this every day.

Bread. Make it yourself. It's not that hard, and can be left to rise when you're doing other stuff. Heck, to make sourdough rye bread, you just need rye flour, water, a bowl, a loaf pan, and a toaster oven. You don't even have to knead it.

No oven? Make yourself some kasha, or polenta, or grits, or porridge. This is basic stuff, and still cheaper than anything else.
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« Reply #107 on: October 19, 2011, 05:02:26 PM »

"There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week."

Well because we are used to getting these foods on a regular basis while even well to do people back in those days did not, does in fact make it more difficult to refrain from such foods. Im buggin right now and yes I do the vegan like fast(save crab or shrimp when I can afford it) I loathe it to be honest and in some ways it doesnt make sense to do it exactly the same because times have changed. They let you eat crab and shrimp back in the day because of the fact they were easy access and cheap. The fatted calf was like stated before a delicacy and to be eaten for a great celebration, not as some variant of a stoffer meal. You couldnt even get fish during the middle of the week because the boats didnt come back until the weekend. So that was something that was already difficult to get but part of the fasting regiment, probably so fat cats wouldnt live it up all the time and general discipline for the not so well to doers who might think of splurging. Now its flipped flopped. For some reason crab and shrimp are the delicacies and high priced while a hamburger or fish sandwich can be got for cheap and easily. So guys doing the fast now have to spend a little bit more than they might normally for food especially if they lack the means to prepare it themselves (unless they just get some ramen or something like that. thats what I do. Ramen, cheap oatmeal and some protein powder which kills the taste of the oatmeal.). Aladdin's aint cheap... neither all these soup and bread places.  

 Part of the reason the fast was mitigated is because of abuses. Fish Friday was an excuse to go to red lobster and fat it up. Perhaps though instead of mitigating it, they should have explained the fast to their parishoners and why they are doing it so the purpose of the fast wasnt negated due to buffet mentality Americans. Once again the Church has a long way to go in fixing its discipline and compromised spirituality. I hope like Heresies which raged in the east that were eventually quelled and destroyed (accept for that whole mohammedan thing but that was their own entity), things will get back to normal for the Catholic Church; but unfortunately I have my doubts.

Well, yes, obviously one has to use a degree of executive discretion...Shellfish may be allowed, but if it's more expensive than the alternatives, than forget it, that defeats the purpose. I do not believe in paying more to fast, or in eating substitute foods during Lent.

As for changing times...my thought is that because our lives have become so pleasurable, fasting is more important now than it once was. We are more attached to worldly things than we ever have been. Maybe for the masses, it's necessary to excercise economy with regard to the strictness of the fasting rules, but I would personally rather follow them strictly myself, to teach myself not to be attached to the comforts of modern life, which is more necessary now than in the past.
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« Reply #108 on: October 19, 2011, 05:05:14 PM »

"There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week."

Well because we are used to getting these foods on a regular basis while even well to do people back in those days did not, does in fact make it more difficult to refrain from such foods. Im buggin right now and yes I do the vegan like fast(save crab or shrimp when I can afford it) I loathe it to be honest and in some ways it doesnt make sense to do it exactly the same because times have changed. They let you eat crab and shrimp back in the day because of the fact they were easy access and cheap. The fatted calf was like stated before a delicacy and to be eaten for a great celebration, not as some variant of a stoffer meal. You couldnt even get fish during the middle of the week because the boats didnt come back until the weekend. So that was something that was already difficult to get but part of the fasting regiment, probably so fat cats wouldnt live it up all the time and general discipline for the not so well to doers who might think of splurging. Now its flipped flopped. For some reason crab and shrimp are the delicacies and high priced while a hamburger or fish sandwich can be got for cheap and easily. So guys doing the fast now have to spend a little bit more than they might normally for food especially if they lack the means to prepare it themselves (unless they just get some ramen or something like that). Aladins aint cheap... niether all these soup and bread places.   

Where I live shell fish is really quite cheap.  In many cases, especially if canned (yuck!), cheaper than meat.  But none of that addresses my questions above about whether the benefits of fasting are derived from the *act* of fasting or from fasting from particular substances, etc., etc., etc.

Both. Imposed dietary restrictions in and of themselves have certain virtues; however, fasting is also about detachment and non-indulgence, and certain foods are certainly more indulgent than others (fatty foods and meat especially).
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« Reply #109 on: October 19, 2011, 05:15:42 PM »

"There's no question that meat & dairy used to be "good food" and wheat products & vegetables (and in some places, fish) used to be "poor man's food." I'm certainy not gonna slaughter my cow just because I feel like having a hamburger. That's why I find it really silly when people whine about how hard the fasts are and how no one in their right mind could follow them. We get so much delightful food in our age that people just can't imagine giving it up twice a week."

Well because we are used to getting these foods on a regular basis while even well to do people back in those days did not, does in fact make it more difficult to refrain from such foods. Im buggin right now and yes I do the vegan like fast(save crab or shrimp when I can afford it) I loathe it to be honest and in some ways it doesnt make sense to do it exactly the same because times have changed. They let you eat crab and shrimp back in the day because of the fact they were easy access and cheap. The fatted calf was like stated before a delicacy and to be eaten for a great celebration, not as some variant of a stoffer meal. You couldnt even get fish during the middle of the week because the boats didnt come back until the weekend. So that was something that was already difficult to get but part of the fasting regiment, probably so fat cats wouldnt live it up all the time and general discipline for the not so well to doers who might think of splurging. Now its flipped flopped. For some reason crab and shrimp are the delicacies and high priced while a hamburger or fish sandwich can be got for cheap and easily. So guys doing the fast now have to spend a little bit more than they might normally for food especially if they lack the means to prepare it themselves (unless they just get some ramen or something like that). Aladins aint cheap... niether all these soup and bread places.   

Where I live shell fish is really quite cheap.  In many cases, especially if canned (yuck!), cheaper than meat.  But none of that addresses my questions above about whether the benefits of fasting are derived from the *act* of fasting or from fasting from particular substances, etc., etc., etc.

Fasting by itself can be very dangerous as it can lead to pride.

That is why we are to pray and fast. Prayer is essential for the life of the soul, while observing the fast while praying can help us say, "No" to sin.

Catechumens are usually urged to ease into fasting and follow the advice of their spiritual fathers regarding praying and fasting.

For what it is worth, during our bible study, my confessor stated that eating any heavy meal, especially with meat, after 5 pm can lead to sexual temptations. He mentioned that there is more than a casual connection between gluttony and lust.
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« Reply #110 on: October 19, 2011, 05:23:29 PM »

Since Orthodox Christians in many jurisdictions are also called to fast from sex during the times of fasting, eating meat would make it more difficult to abstain. Of course, if married, one must fast from marital relations with the permission of their spouse and also pray during this time as the Bible recommends. This is also why weddings are usually not celebrated during Lent.  

I wonder if the Catholic bishops would dare urge people to fast from sex on Fridays?
Now many would consider such a marital fast a punishment or hardship.
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« Reply #111 on: October 19, 2011, 05:24:51 PM »

For what it is worth, during our bible study, my confessor stated that eating any heavy meal, especially with meat, after 5 pm can lead to sexual temptations. He mentioned that there is more than a casual connection between gluttony and lust.

The Fathers certainly say so, too.
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« Reply #112 on: October 19, 2011, 07:00:26 PM »

Since Orthodox Christians in many jurisdictions are also called to fast from sex during the times of fasting, eating meat would make it more difficult to abstain. Of course, if married, one must fast from marital relations with the permission of their spouse and also pray during this time as the Bible recommends. This is also why weddings are usually not celebrated during Lent.  

I wonder if the Catholic bishops would dare urge people to fast from sex on Fridays?
Now many would consider such a marital fast a punishment or hardship.

You mean the married folk? Yeah I bet they could. Especially if they've been married more than say two years! Maybe one should make a mandatory sex night every friday for those guys!  Its the co-habitating, and casual fornicators that might object to it as they wipe the Eucharist from their mouth on to the floor....
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« Reply #113 on: October 20, 2011, 12:00:06 PM »

Since Orthodox Christians in many jurisdictions are also called to fast from sex during the times of fasting, eating meat would make it more difficult to abstain. Of course, if married, one must fast from marital relations with the permission of their spouse and also pray during this time as the Bible recommends. This is also why weddings are usually not celebrated during Lent.  

I wonder if the Catholic bishops would dare urge people to fast from sex on Fridays?
Now many would consider such a marital fast a punishment or hardship.


How do you know that there are not bishops who have done so?  That's not to say that they have, but...

During my time in the Orthodox Church, I never heard any Orthodox bishops talk about a marital fast.  One priest, however, did discuss it when specifically asked during a discussion group.  I seem to recall his advice about it being rather quite vague and non-specific.  I would not dare, however, to generalize from that experience and extrapolate to all of Orthodoxy that same vagueness and non-specificity  Wink.

I also seem to recall someone (was it you?) earlier on in this thread relating fasting in the Catholic Church to punishment.  No doubt there are Catholics who may view it in this manner, but that is certainly not what I (a convert) have been taught, nor my wife, a life-long Catholic who also spent 12 years in Catholic schools in the 1950's and '60's.  In fact, none of the Catholics I've spoken with about this relate fasting to punishment.  I have always been taught and read that fasting and abstinence are about repentance, i.e. turning away from sin and back to God, and obedience, but never about "punishment" or some kind of retribution.  What a strange notion!

Fasting as a hardship?  Perhaps for some, but then I've known many Orthodox, too, who experience fasting, whether from food or sex or whatever, as a hardship, complaining about it ad nauseum.  Even many Jews I know (and I am one, myself) would complain horrifically about the (once a year!) fast at Yom Kippur.  And many even refused to do it.  So, I think it's more of a *human* thing rather than a specifically Catholic or Orthodox or Muslim thing to grouse about denying ourselves that which we want.
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« Reply #114 on: October 20, 2011, 02:04:31 PM »

Since Orthodox Christians in many jurisdictions are also called to fast from sex during the times of fasting, eating meat would make it more difficult to abstain. Of course, if married, one must fast from marital relations with the permission of their spouse and also pray during this time as the Bible recommends. This is also why weddings are usually not celebrated during Lent.  

I wonder if the Catholic bishops would dare urge people to fast from sex on Fridays?
Now many would consider such a marital fast a punishment or hardship.


How do you know that there are not bishops who have done so?  That's not to say that they have, but...

During my time in the Orthodox Church, I never heard any Orthodox bishops talk about a marital fast.  One priest, however, did discuss it when specifically asked during a discussion group.  I seem to recall his advice about it being rather quite vague and non-specific.  I would not dare, however, to generalize from that experience and extrapolate to all of Orthodoxy that same vagueness and non-specificity  Wink.

I also seem to recall someone (was it you?) earlier on in this thread relating fasting in the Catholic Church to punishment.  No doubt there are Catholics who may view it in this manner, but that is certainly not what I (a convert) have been taught, nor my wife, a life-long Catholic who also spent 12 years in Catholic schools in the 1950's and '60's.  In fact, none of the Catholics I've spoken with about this relate fasting to punishment.  I have always been taught and read that fasting and abstinence are about repentance, i.e. turning away from sin and back to God, and obedience, but never about "punishment" or some kind of retribution.  What a strange notion!

Fasting as a hardship?  Perhaps for some, but then I've known many Orthodox, too, who experience fasting, whether from food or sex or whatever, as a hardship, complaining about it ad nauseum.  Even many Jews I know (and I am one, myself) would complain horrifically about the (once a year!) fast at Yom Kippur.  And many even refused to do it.  So, I think it's more of a *human* thing rather than a specifically Catholic or Orthodox or Muslim thing to grouse about denying ourselves that which we want.

I grew up in Los Angeles parochial schools in the mid 1950s, and I am still here. The connection between fasting and repentance was often not made. I remember when students complained about the fast, the nuns told us to offer it up in a spirit of obedience and love as obedience to the Church, the Pope, its teachings, and traditions was crucial for Catholics. The nuns and priests also stressed that prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and acts of penance were necessary to reduce our "time in purgatory," which was considered unavoidable. There was a tremendous lack of consistency. While we were told to imitate the saints who would rather die than commit a sin, there was this sick schizophrenic emphasis given to avoid being "holier than the Pope." Therefore, sanctity and spiritual sanity were not encouraged. Interestingly, out of this insanity came a book entitled, We neurotics, which was written by a Roman Catholic priest.  Roll Eyes

I started reading Orthodox Christian books, which I found in Catholic bookstores, especially those by Metropolitan Anthony Bloom, may his memory be eternal. His books introduced me to the idea that prayer and fasting go together, how to pray, and how metanoia is essential to our lives. He was a very sane and saintly hierarch. Father Alexander Schmemann's book, For the Life of the World, was also crucial in developing an Orthodox ethos.
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« Reply #115 on: October 20, 2011, 02:41:25 PM »

Since Orthodox Christians in many jurisdictions are also called to fast from sex during the times of fasting, eating meat would make it more difficult to abstain. Of course, if married, one must fast from marital relations with the permission of their spouse and also pray during this time as the Bible recommends. This is also why weddings are usually not celebrated during Lent.  

I wonder if the Catholic bishops would dare urge people to fast from sex on Fridays?
Now many would consider such a marital fast a punishment or hardship.


How do you know that there are not bishops who have done so?  That's not to say that they have, but...

During my time in the Orthodox Church, I never heard any Orthodox bishops talk about a marital fast.  One priest, however, did discuss it when specifically asked during a discussion group.  I seem to recall his advice about it being rather quite vague and non-specific.  I would not dare, however, to generalize from that experience and extrapolate to all of Orthodoxy that same vagueness and non-specificity  Wink.

I also seem to recall someone (was it you?) earlier on in this thread relating fasting in the Catholic Church to punishment.  No doubt there are Catholics who may view it in this manner, but that is certainly not what I (a convert) have been taught, nor my wife, a life-long Catholic who also spent 12 years in Catholic schools in the 1950's and '60's.  In fact, none of the Catholics I've spoken with about this relate fasting to punishment.  I have always been taught and read that fasting and abstinence are about repentance, i.e. turning away from sin and back to God, and obedience, but never about "punishment" or some kind of retribution.  What a strange notion!

Fasting as a hardship?  Perhaps for some, but then I've known many Orthodox, too, who experience fasting, whether from food or sex or whatever, as a hardship, complaining about it ad nauseum.  Even many Jews I know (and I am one, myself) would complain horrifically about the (once a year!) fast at Yom Kippur.  And many even refused to do it.  So, I think it's more of a *human* thing rather than a specifically Catholic or Orthodox or Muslim thing to grouse about denying ourselves that which we want.

I grew up in Los Angeles parochial schools in the mid 1950s, and I am still here. The connection between fasting and repentance was often not made. I remember when students complained about the fast, the nuns told us to offer it up in a spirit of obedience and love as obedience to the Church, the Pope, its teachings, and traditions was crucial for Catholics. The nuns and priests also stressed that prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and acts of penance were necessary to reduce our "time in purgatory," which was considered unavoidable. There was a tremendous lack of consistency. While we were told to imitate the saints who would rather die than commit a sin, there was this sick schizophrenic emphasis given to avoid being "holier than the Pope." Therefore, sanctity and spiritual sanity were not encouraged. Interestingly, out of this insanity came a book entitled, We neurotics, which was written by a Roman Catholic priest.  Roll Eyes

I started reading Orthodox Christian books, which I found in Catholic bookstores, especially those by Metropolitan Anthony Bloom, may his memory be eternal. His books introduced me to the idea that prayer and fasting go together, how to pray, and how metanoia is essential to our lives. He was a very sane and saintly hierarch. Father Alexander Schmemann's book, For the Life of the World, was also crucial in developing an Orthodox ethos.

Sounds like it might be an interesting read, if for nothing more than the outlook he may have given when it was written  Grin.

We Neurotics: A Handbook for the Half-mad
by Bernard Basset
3.5 of 5 stars 3.50  ·  rating details  ·  2 ratings  ·  2 reviews
"Religion proves an absorbing subject, the most testing and the most rewarding of all the commitments made in life," writes Father Basset. "Strange that it should also be presented as the most insipid, less by its enemies than by its friends."

Here, the popular and prolific English Jesuit has written a book of sound spiritual direction that is as readable as a novel--and also immensely funny. Taking as his premise that all of us today are a little neurotic, the author pursues some off-beat but illuminating episodes in the life of a typical, well-meaning layman: an Everyman of the Atomic Age.

For all its laughter We Neurotics proceeds directly to the hart of the matter, probes the essential spiritual core. It is required reading for all of us "who in our bathrooms and bedrooms find ourselves a little mad."

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« Reply #116 on: October 20, 2011, 05:51:01 PM »

Since Orthodox Christians in many jurisdictions are also called to fast from sex during the times of fasting, eating meat would make it more difficult to abstain. Of course, if married, one must fast from marital relations with the permission of their spouse and also pray during this time as the Bible recommends. This is also why weddings are usually not celebrated during Lent.  

I wonder if the Catholic bishops would dare urge people to fast from sex on Fridays?
Now many would consider such a marital fast a punishment or hardship.


How do you know that there are not bishops who have done so?  That's not to say that they have, but...

During my time in the Orthodox Church, I never heard any Orthodox bishops talk about a marital fast.  One priest, however, did discuss it when specifically asked during a discussion group.  I seem to recall his advice about it being rather quite vague and non-specific.  I would not dare, however, to generalize from that experience and extrapolate to all of Orthodoxy that same vagueness and non-specificity  Wink.

I also seem to recall someone (was it you?) earlier on in this thread relating fasting in the Catholic Church to punishment.  No doubt there are Catholics who may view it in this manner, but that is certainly not what I (a convert) have been taught, nor my wife, a life-long Catholic who also spent 12 years in Catholic schools in the 1950's and '60's.  In fact, none of the Catholics I've spoken with about this relate fasting to punishment.  I have always been taught and read that fasting and abstinence are about repentance, i.e. turning away from sin and back to God, and obedience, but never about "punishment" or some kind of retribution.  What a strange notion!

Fasting as a hardship?  Perhaps for some, but then I've known many Orthodox, too, who experience fasting, whether from food or sex or whatever, as a hardship, complaining about it ad nauseum.  Even many Jews I know (and I am one, myself) would complain horrifically about the (once a year!) fast at Yom Kippur.  And many even refused to do it.  So, I think it's more of a *human* thing rather than a specifically Catholic or Orthodox or Muslim thing to grouse about denying ourselves that which we want.

I grew up in Los Angeles parochial schools in the mid 1950s, and I am still here. The connection between fasting and repentance was often not made. I remember when students complained about the fast, the nuns told us to offer it up in a spirit of obedience and love as obedience to the Church, the Pope, its teachings, and traditions was crucial for Catholics. The nuns and priests also stressed that prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and acts of penance were necessary to reduce our "time in purgatory," which was considered unavoidable. There was a tremendous lack of consistency. While we were told to imitate the saints who would rather die than commit a sin, there was this sick schizophrenic emphasis given to avoid being "holier than the Pope." Therefore, sanctity and spiritual sanity were not encouraged. Interestingly, out of this insanity came a book entitled, We neurotics, which was written by a Roman Catholic priest.  Roll Eyes

I started reading Orthodox Christian books, which I found in Catholic bookstores, especially those by Metropolitan Anthony Bloom, may his memory be eternal. His books introduced me to the idea that prayer and fasting go together, how to pray, and how metanoia is essential to our lives. He was a very sane and saintly hierarch. Father Alexander Schmemann's book, For the Life of the World, was also crucial in developing an Orthodox ethos.

We were always taught the trivium of Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving.  Those three could move mountains because they, taken together, opened the soul fully to God great blessings and abundance.

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« Reply #117 on: November 13, 2012, 01:28:09 AM »

Cardinal Dolan says in his speech that the bishops will consider a return to abstaining from meat on Fridays, in the U.S. Church:

"The work of our Conference during the coming year includes reflections on re-embracing Friday as a particular day of penance, including the possible re-institution of abstinence on all Fridays of the year, not just during Lent."
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« Reply #118 on: November 13, 2012, 06:40:35 AM »

When I was a kid, it was fish sticks and spaghetti every Wednesday and Friday night, rain or shine. Mom never gave up a lot of her habits from before Vatican II.  Smiley
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