Friday, August 6, 2004

The Depreciation of The Sabbath in Contemporary Life.

Earl E. Appleby (Times Against Humanity) has a excellent post on the loss of respect for the Sunday as a day of holiness in contemporary American life, inquiring whether it is "The Lord's Day -- Or Wal-Mart's?":

But have we not sacrificed true happiness in pursuit of its counterfeit? . . . In a world in which our appetites are the measure of our happiness, what room is left for higher standards?

Well worth reading.

This is one aspect of religious life where I think that many contemporary Christians -- myself included -- could learn from their Jewish brothers and sisters. From the lighting of the candles to the blessings at the meal, from dusk on Friday to Havdalah on Saturday evening, if you've ever experienced Shabbat celebrated in a traditional Jewish setting, the sense of it being a day set aside, a day of holiness and remembrance of God's Creation, is palpable and something to be treasured.

For a glimpse into that mindset and that kind of feeling, check out The Sabbath by Abraham Joshua Heschel.

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