Sunshine and Sniffles

While Britain basks in the spring sunshine, the community is snuffling and sneezing its way through a cold. Thus we have the paradox: sunshine to cheer us up, sniffles to make us gloomy. There is no way to resolve this. Quietnun has opted for misery in the shadows and has retired from the fray with a large box of tissues, while Digitalnun has abandoned the keyboard to do a little gardening by the light of the midday sun. Harmony and the common life will return when the sun goes in and the sniffles cease. In the meantime, it’s a bad case of sarabaitism.


13 thoughts on “Sunshine and Sniffles”

  1. sunshine – yes
    sniffles – yes
    sarabaitism – new word

    Just checked it on Google and found myself advise to turn to iBenedictines for usage!

    Here it is more sybaritism with sun, lunch and birdsong in garden, but I do hope your sniffles soon cease.

  2. I suffer from persistent hay fever. Daily medication keeps it at bay – so far. Mine is all year round, and a nuisance if I run out of medication.

    I hope that the community gets over this quickly.

  3. ‘There is no stability, no perseverance, no obedience to rule and superior: “The gyrovagues quite obviously are not only running away from the regular life but are in full flight from all responsibility whatever. They are in a lamentable condition, escapists who cannot bear to face themselves or to face other men for any length of time, always hoping for something better just around the corner. It is clear that they are simply the logical consequence of sarabaitism pushed to its extreme” (78). While Merton points out that “Today—obviously the sarabaite and the gyrovague exist only in spirit” (78) rather than as distinct monastic types, that does not mean the attitudes and state of mind they represent cannot and do not assume contemporary forms.’
    Thomas Merton, Introduction xxiii

  4. Delightful post! Has many of us rushing to our search engines! Sarabatism… Oh, my.

    I’m glad to see you smiling through the sniffles, and thank you for the smile and sunshine you radiate this morning. Wish you both well soon!

  5. Your “snuffles” translates to our “grippe” here in Alberta, Canada. Seems to be making the rounds, Ole Doc Sawbones thinks the flu vaccine may not have been such a good match this year, partial immunity, however, being better than none at all. If we lived closer I’d bring over a large pot of homemade chicken soup, full of my healing prayers and herbs. Hope you all feel better soon.

  6. From my sniffley misery, much alleviated by your kindness, let me explain the reference to sarabaitism. You will find it in RB 1, where Benedict talks about the kinds of monks.

    Of the sarabaites he says, inter alia, ‘Their fads and fancies constitute their law. Whatever notions they have, whatever they choose to do, they dub holy; anything they do not like they consider unlawful.’ Merton makes unnecessarily heavy weather of it, I think. I was merely joking that in our present circumstances we are not exactly ‘model monks’ — singing the Divine Office has fallen by the wayside, we are avoiding one another as much as possible, and the timetable has been relaxed so that we can go to bed a little earlier and get up a little later — just until we’re better!

  7. Thank you, I’ve just found this and you’ve saved me hunting for my dictionary. This sounds presumptious for I suppose, like marriage, no-one from outside a relationship knows what it is really like. The life of a monk or nun seems a very austere one and I was relieved that you were taking care of your colds.

  8. Yes, a light hearted day and praise be for a sustaining sense of humour.

    Oh but
    “Whatever notions they have, whatever they choose to do, they dub holy; anything they do not like they consider unlawful.”
    struck a chord. How easy it is to for me to see God’s will in my fads and prejudices rather than truly listen to his call.

  9. I am in the same state and have been battling a chest infection all week, while staringly longingly at the sunshine outside. I hope you feel better soon and that Bro Dog has been a good companion in your troubles. I don’t think God wants us to suffer: bugs are just the way life is and we can only try to make the best of it. God bless you and your bugs!

  10. Thank you for enlightening me. I hope you are all restored to full health soon. You don’t want to feel poorly at anybtime but certainly not over Holy Week and Easter.

  11. Thank you for all your good wishes, and I hope you are better now, Judith-Anne. We are a bit limp and unable to sing, but at least we are no longer a danger to man and beast!

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