Modern Lent Temptations


Walking through the house, I notice there is an over abundance of food available. This caused me to start thinking about how much of an act of will fasting is in the modern world. We are so comfortable and wealthy now, that we are tempted by our own largesse. What would our ancestors think of this? Would they laud us for the excesses of modernity, or would they think we’ve lost our way?


Probably a little of both. I’m finding that with portion sizes being what they are now, half a meal still feels like a lot. Even on fasting days I’m probably eating better than many of my ancestors. It’s very humbling to think about the ‘bread and water’ days.


It saddens me that even most Catholics don’t actually adhere to the Law regarding Lenten fasting. If you haven’t read it, I posted about this on Ash Wednesday.


Thanks, I’m trying to stick to the traditional guidelines. It’s my first time fasting and I’m already noticing changes in how I relate to food. My typical mode is ‘Grug hungry, Grug eat’, which leads to constant unhealthy snacking. While I’m not as hungry as I thought I’d be, I am having to think a lot more about how I time my meals. My reptilian brain is struggling to accept that there’s food in the fridge but I can’t eat between meals. Really makes you think there’s something to this whole ‘mortification’ business.


I find myself occupying my mind in other, more constructive ways. I’ve been reading more encyclicals and familiarizing myself with parts of Canon Law that I was previously unaware of. I do get hungry, and that causes me to think about the reason for Lent, namely penitence.

We should all be asking ourselves, “what have I done to deserve Divine Justice, and what can I do to begin paying that debt?”


I personally stick to the traditional Lent fasting rules, but I also decided to cut a modern temptation not related to food: the computer. I often find myself procrastinating on the computer during the day, so for Lent I decided to cut the PC usage during the day, and only use it in the evening. During the day I find myself craving much more for using the computer than for eating, frankly. I do think our ancestors would be horrified with how much our priorities have changed.