Friday, March 07, 2008

Be warned

As I mentioned before, I'm part of a Lenten Book Club with three other women of various Christian backgrounds. I'm probably the flaming liberal of the group and the others are at varying points on the conservative spectrum. Today we had a spirited discussion on the topic of BOREDOM. (Does that strike anyone as funny besides me?)

The title of today's reading was "See Boredom as a Warning", and Nouwen's opening premise was that "boredom is a sentiment of disconnectedness." I have only just realized he used the word sentiment. Throughout the whole discussion I was thinking symptom. (Both "s" words, right?) A symptom is often a warning; maybe that's what got me off track, but a sentiment is an emotion. When I am bored I don't feel much emotion at all. Certainly not enthusiasm nor passion. If I'm really bored I don't feel anger or resentment either. I feel emotionless.

From my own vast experience with boredom, I am totally in sync with the disconnected part. His second premise, however, (which threw many in our group for a loop) was that we can be both busy and bored. He went on to support this thought with the idea that it's when we think what we do has little or no meaning, and we keep doing it, we will be bored at the same time.

Nobody but me felt that was accurate. Some cited examples of how it might be true for non-Christians, or how it used to be true for them, before they became Christians, but I am the odd woman out who still believes it's absolutely true for me still.

So what conclusions do I draw from all this?
  1. I'm not really Christian? (Alas, always a possibility, but not probable.)
  2. I'm more honest than they are? (Nice try, but no cigar.)
  3. They are deluding themselves?
No, actually I think this lesson has more levels than any of us have explored. And I don't find the possibility of exploring them the least bit boring. I'll let you know if I figure anything (of significance) out.

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