‘Tis Mardi Gras today, which means the Lenten Season is almost upon us. On the one hand, I’m a little surprised that I’m paying the season any mind, cut off as I have been of late from christian religious practice. But, as Rev. Dean often reminded me, I’m such a dyed-in-the-wool Episcopalian that I could claim atheism and still find myself planning for the spring fasting season.
In keeping with tradition hereabouts (a catch-all summary and links for you), I am committing to two disciplines for the season: one for mind and one for body, the union of which, I hope, will provide fertile ground for a bit of spiritual growth (notice I’m setting the bar kind of low on that measure). For the mental discipline (stop laughing) last year, I looked over a theme of Radical Transformation, courtesy of Rhyte’s suggestions. This year, I can’t say my reading has a particular theme, other than possibly “Somehow this needs to connect to the SACS prep at work,” which is vague to the point of being useless. But, I have four books I’ll be wallowing in and wandering through for the season:
- bell hooks, Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom
- bell hooks, Teaching Critical Thinking: Practical Wisdom
- Pema Chödrön, Taking the Leap: Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears
- Douglas Hofstadter, Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid
I suppose I don’t need to mention which ones are directly related to work, eh? But, getting my head around other ways of teaching and communicating seems worthwhile in my personal space as well. And, yes, the last is a bit of a cheat, since I already started the book, but I figure 6 weeks might give me a chance in hell of approaching a finish, though, given my progress thus far, the halfway point seems about manageable.
For last year’s physical discipline, I gave up consuming meat (the single most oft read piece on this site, Embracing My Inner Hippie: Vegetarian Eating and Barefoot Running [which this week was brought to folks who searched “are all hippies vegetarian” and “vegan hippie eating” (*giggle*)]. This time, I’m picking up a morning cardio and whatnot ritual (like GEB, it’s not new, but it is getting a greater focus as a result of Lent).
I’m going to try to respond to my readings here fairly regularly, along with the occasional complaint about what the heck I think I’m doing to myself at 5 am every morning. Hope to see some of you all come along for the ride!