Lent is a time when Christians prepare for Easter. It is a time of going inward, reflecting on the suffering of Christ and of others, and examining our own conscience. Yet, as my priest Father James likes to say, “Lent is not about you. It’s about God.” Lent is a time for renewing our commitment to living the life we think most reflects the presence of the Divine in our own lives, which means living for others. Contrary to what many folks believe, Lent is not a time for morose thoughts and words about how hard life is without the things we like best. It is a time of joyful giving and honest reflection about the life we are living and the life we wish to live.
For a lot of folks, it’s hard enough to make the connection between the practice of yoga and a faith tradition like Catholicism; this is true for a lot of reasons, of course, but primarily because many see yoga as working towards individual liberation and much of organized religion as invested in the oppression of others. Both views fail to take into account the richness of yoga and familiar faith traditions. I offer these wonderful essays by scholar Francis X. Clooney on the Lenten Season and the practice of yoga in an effort to expand our thinking about both. If you do read and you’d like to share your thoughts or talk about them, please do get in touch. This is how we grow in our love for each other and the Divine, by having loving and honest conversations about the things that matter most.