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Author Topic: Is it wrong.......  (Read 1879 times) Average Rating: 0
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spartacus
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« on: August 16, 2004, 04:35:15 PM »

Is it wrong to read scripture while in the Lavatory? Visitors to my home often comment on how I keep a vynil soft-cover King James edition of The Holy Bible in the magazine rack....one or two have found it offensive.

Others have thought it was quite alright and even admitted to reading scripture in the lavatory themselves. With our lives being so busy and trying to cram so much out of every minute....especially with small children...For many a few minutes in the lavatory every day is the only time when one can sit in peace and quiet and contemplate things.

My habit of doing this, believe it or not has even lead some people who have never really read the Bible before to actually read -- it perhaps for the first time. My children too even follow my lead and read the Holy Bible in the Lavatory. My youngest one even insists on taking that same soft-cover edition with her whenever we travel. She can not read it and there are no pictures....but there is something just about the Book itself she finds comforting and likes to fall asleep while being read to from it. She sometimes even sleeps with it when she is staying in a strange place.

I do not recall how we came upon this particular edition and I have a good number of different editions of the Holy Bible. This one has never been blessed by a priest.  


Anyone else care to chime in?
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Etienne
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« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2004, 07:55:05 PM »

Dear Spartacus,

Reading your post it appears your intentions are honourable.

The Bible is a book apart. The Gospels an icon of Christ, to be treated with great reverence. The lavatory is a place of necessity, where one voids one's bladder and bowels. A bible is normally kept in a place of some honour.

Your question was to ask others to 'chime in', my suggestion would be to discuss this with a priest, and not to make a rule for yourself on this........
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spartacus
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« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2004, 11:30:43 AM »

Dear Spartacus,

Reading your post it appears your intentions are honourable.

The Bible is a book apart. The Gospels an icon of Christ, to be treated with great reverence. The lavatory is a place of necessity, where one voids one's bladder and bowels. A bible is normally kept in a place of some honour.

Your question was to ask others to 'chime in', my suggestion would be to discuss this with a priest, and not to make a rule for yourself on this........

And so I shall...Thank you for the advice.

In our family, The Bible is the most-read book. I study it. My children study it. We discuss its meanings and history and our Orthodox beliefs. There are times we treat its reading with great reverance....a Psalm before a special dinner or occasion....a New Testament lesson to teach a child to help show them where they have done wrong.....For this we usually use a special family Bible kept in a special place of honor with a crucifix, icons and candles and pray before reading it....but my kids also might have a paperback version thrown in with school books or shoved under the bed as they fall asleep reading it. I have a study Bible where I have made various notes or tabbed things. My eldest also makes notes and tabs things....these Bibles have not been blessed.  When we have questions we ask our priest or a parishioner who happens to be degreed theologian. It is fair to say that these people have expressed being favorably impressed with my children's knowlege and comprehension.

I have one son in 4th grade who is very much into learning about ancient Greek Mythology. His background with The Holy Bible has enabled him to approach this subject with a level of understanding not commonly found in boys his age. It has also increased his level of interest and understanding in the Holy Bible because he is now familiar with some of the heathen practices and beliefs that were common among gentiles before and during Christ's time.

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« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2004, 09:47:24 PM »

It goes along the lines of St. Paul in his offering of praying unceasingly.   No matter where you are at.  the golf course, in the bath room , whatever. there is nowhere where we can call upon  the Lord for guidance.  

JoeS   Roll Eyes
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« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2004, 10:56:56 PM »

Of course, I have an icon of the Baptism of Christ in my bathroom, so I can't throw stones here.  Smiley
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« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2004, 11:04:06 PM »

In a way, I can understand some being scandalized by the notion of a Bible in the bathroom. After all, this is something we kiss and venerate. Muslims wash their hands before they touch their holy book, and should we be any less respectful? Perhaps this is a reaction to my own thoughts/actions when I was a Wesleyan, when we would use somewhat sophmoric slogans like "From one throne to the other!" to describe our bathroom reading  Roll Eyes I personally am not scandalized by this (like David, my family also has an icon in our bathroom), but again, I can understand how it might scandalize others.
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« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2004, 12:50:40 AM »

What would Jesus want?  I cannot see how it would be wrong.  Jesus was fully God and fully man at the same time -- and He had the same needs to use the bathroom that men do.  Let's not be overly puritanical about this.  Yes, as above, "pray without ceasing" can (should?) indeed include the bathroom.
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« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2004, 02:34:19 AM »

Jesus also had to sleep. But the Fathers sometimes said, as sleep overtook them, "come here, you wicked servant" (ie. sleep is necessary, but to be hated). Just because it's part of fallen humanity, that doesn't mean that it's fine to mix and match with everything under the sun--especially holy things. I think that is where some people are coming from, and not because of some cultural stigma or puritanism Wink Again, it's not particularly scandalous to me, but I think a "Bathroom Reader" book might be a better route--leastwise, it might be less scandalous to visitors.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2004, 02:37:01 AM by Paradosis » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2004, 10:11:29 AM »

I personally don't see anything wrong with it, but I can't bring myself to read Scripture while in the loo.  I just feel weird about it.  But I have no problem reading something from the Church Fathers or a treatise on the Liturgy while, um...reigning over my kingdom.  My parents' pastor actually said last year that it might be wise to keep some sort of devotional literature in the bathroom because even then is a "time to pray".

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« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2004, 12:10:14 PM »

I personally am not scandalized by this (like David, my family also has an icon in our bathroom), but again, I can understand how it might scandalize others.

We remove it when we have a visitor who might be scandalized by it. However make a point of making sure it is plain sight there if we have unchurched neighbors visiting. Yes, the Bible is a book separate from all others, yet it also intimidates many for reasons I do not pretend to understand. SOme of our neighbors are also intimidated by the fact we are Orthodox -- they see the Icons, crucifx and prayer ropeshear the word "Orthodox" and for some reason think we might be worse than crazed evangelicals. These things should not intimidate. We have many versions of the Bible in our Home...many different editions. Indeed I am more scandlaized by some of the language I see used in some of the more "modern" American Bibles.

For example Psalm 23 in the New American Bible approved by the Roman Catholic Church

"Even though I walk through a dark place....."

Where it should read,

"Yeah though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death..."

Some of these modern editions lose the beauty of the language and imagery in favor of being "more reader friendly" or even politically correct. Personally, I find this more scandalous than finding a non-blessed copy of the Bible in the reading rack in my "reading room" as my wife calls it. I only keep my version of the New American Bible because it is a study Bible with oodles of footnotes and referneces at the bottom of every page I sometimes find helpful when I am trying to use it as a teaching tool for my children. My kids also understand it better...but at about the age of ten they seem to develop an appreciation for the beauty of the language in other versions.
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« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2004, 02:03:53 PM »

Is it wrong to read scripture while in the Lavatory?

IMHO It is just so WRONG to read in the bathroom.   :cwm15:

Why??? I mean, do your business and leave - it's not a library.  Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2004, 02:17:55 PM »

Quote
I mean, do your business and leave - it's not a library.  

When you're the only male in a house full of females, it's a library, a study hall, a quiet room and a sanctum sanctorum Smiley
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spartacus
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« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2004, 04:31:42 PM »

When you have three small kids (with all their friends and cousins) and your wife's quilting and other projects have taken over the bedroom....
....... it's a library, a study hall, a quiet room and a sanctum sanctorum Smiley
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spartacus
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« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2004, 04:38:24 PM »

IMHO It is just so WRONG to read in the bathroom.   :cwm15:

Why??? I mean, do your business and leave - it's not a library.  Smiley

In considering this further, I think it all goes back to intent. If your intent is to be disrespectful or show disrespect to those you know will be ofended then yes, it is wrong.

If however, the situation is that it is a room you also go to for quiet, peace and solace, then it is not wrong. I do not go into that room just to answer nature's call. I often go in there and just lock the door and sit by myself for a while and read....my whole family knows I do this. It is the only place I can be left alone for at least 20 minutes between the hours of 6 AM and 11PM. It is my "Fortress of Solitude".

Perhpas it might seem odd...but the intent is honorable....and the action is practical
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« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2004, 02:59:49 PM »

Quote
Is it wrong to read scripture while in the Lavatory?

It should be OK, as long as you don't do it in another's house when their Charmin isn't well-stocked, lest impure temptations take over to extricate yourself from a sticky situation.
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