Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Fasting and Praying

From Cora Evans:
We fast as an eschatological sign.  This is a fancy term that means that we fast as reminder that there is something greater than this world.  There are great things in this world, food being one of them.  But of all the created things in this world, there is something greater awaiting us- heaven.  Thus we must be willing to give up even the good things of this world for heaven.  This is why a priest or religious sister gives up the greatest created good- marriage- for heaven.  Their sacrifice is a larger sacrifice that we are also called to take part in; a sacrifice of something good and real for something even better and even more real.   
This is what separates Christian fasting from fasting done in other religions around the world.  The recognition that this world is created good, contains good things, and that creation can point us towards God is something unique to the Jewish-Christian tradition.  Other religions have varying views of this world, of creation.  Fasting, for many other religions, involves realizing that the created world is, in fact, not good.  However, for the Christian we realize that the created world is good, in fact is very good in the words from Genesis.  But as good as it is, there is something better.  Heaven is better and in order to realize this, we fast from the goods of this world for something better. (Read more.)

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