Sunday, November 15, 2009

Religion as memory

Canterbury Pilgrims

Deep in the archives of Psychology Today, I found an excerpt from Thomas Moore's well known book, Care of the Soul. Here's a brief passage that really stood out to me:

There are two ways of thinking about church and religion. One is that we go to church in order to be in the presence of the holy, to learn and to have our lives influenced by that presence. The other is that church teaches us directly and symbolically to see the sacred dimension of everyday life. In this latter sense, religion is an "art of memory," a way of sustaining mindfulness about the religion that is inherent in everything we do. For some, religion is a Sunday affair, and they risk dividing life into the holy Sabbath and the secular week. For others, religion is a week-long observance that is inspired and sustained on the Sabbath.
Which one is it for you? Is it, perhaps, sometimes one, sometimes the other?

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