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Saturday, July 14, 2007

In Praise Of Sinners


OK, just so there’s no confusion, I don’t mean to praise PRAISE sinners…I mean, a sin is a sin is a sin. I don’t mean to praise the sinner for sinning (myself, most definitely included). No, what I want to praise is what may follow the sin...

Suffering, penance, reflection, atonement, redemption and (one can only hope...found wisdom) are useful things, no? I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: I am not innately wise. It would be far closer to the truth to describe myself as a passionate (sometimes arrogant) fool.
I have stumbled and blundered my way through life, tethered or led (sometimes shackled) by my heartstrings.

Sigh.

I’m not hopeless, though. With the suffering, penance, reflection, atonement and redemption came a bit of wisdom, a bit of understanding, some important lessons. I am who I am not just because I did good, but because I’ve sinned, too. If I were to weigh the ultimate import of living virtuously versus erring miserably, I’d have to admit that the road to redemption posed the greatest hurdles and eluted the most change. Then again, remember that I’m a pilgrim soul riding the “short bus” through eternity.

I screw up quite a bit more than most.

* * *

16 Comments:

Blogger Gillette said...

Ok...well...while beautifully and poetically written (as always), after reading this four times, I still don't get it.

I mean I get that good comes out of messing up and all that jazz...but I find it really difficult imagining what a thoughtful, conscious person like you could have done to warrant this to the extent that it cannot be tended and mended.

Are you a tad hard on yourself, Mr. Jonas?

But, then, again, I guess I wouldn't understand as I'm just a simple gal. You, kind sir, are complex, mysterious and elusive.

My vote is for you to give yourself a big hug.

Sat Jul 14, 01:50:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Ah, perhaps now you'll see...

I wasn't always a thoughtful, conscious person.

Sat Jul 14, 02:10:00 PM  
Blogger Gillette said...

Oh yeah...I keep forgetting that much of your writing is about the past... as when I write about the past, I say it's about the past (cuz I'm simple).

So I'm still voting for you to give yourself that big hug.

But I will now add that it also be a reminder that with your new digs and new life and new you, that you ARE conscious and won't do that again so (being the imp-brat I am) please be easier on yourself.

Or I'm going to have to spank you or something.

Or are you just being poetic again and I'm missing it????

Sat Jul 14, 06:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The word "sin" is interesting....it means to miss the mark. I don't know of any human being that hasn't done that over and over again, by the time they are 3. And I'm always interested in the spectrum of 'missing it'. Was the intent to harm purposeful? Was the harm done through lack of understanding, strength or maliciousness?

We all hurt, and we all hurt others. The best we can do is exactly what you've done. Learn and then let go.

It has been true for me that my own voiables (sp) have helped me to be more compassionate, tolerant and understanding. There's just something about walking in the shoes of another that brings that.

As long as no one falls by the side of the road, and quits walking.

Namaste

Sat Jul 14, 06:32:00 PM  
Blogger Twilight said...

You say, Jonas that you

"blundered (your) way through life, tethered and led (sometimes shackled) by (your) heartstrings"

I submit therefore that sin probably doesn't come into it - maybe poor judgement, that's all, and who among us can deny suffering from that disease?

You write in such a positive tone, though. I suspect your judgement has improved by leaps and bounds.

And...I also prescribe a big self-hug.

Sat Jul 14, 06:56:00 PM  
Blogger Fiona said...

Sin....what exactly IS sin?

Sun Jul 15, 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger Sally-Sal said...

Mistakes are not what define us. What defines is the betterment of self through those mistakes we make.

I think the only sin is letting something wonderful slip by without having the courage to reach for it.
(just my .02 as always ;)

Let me just say, that you are wonderful, Jonas. :)

Sun Jul 15, 11:07:00 PM  
Blogger deb said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Sun Jul 15, 11:56:00 PM  
Blogger Fiona said...

Sally - I LOVE your definition of sin and I'd wholeheartedly agree with that!

Mon Jul 16, 12:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Roads said...

The Boss. 'Nuff said.

Mon Jul 16, 05:26:00 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Sins versus errant decisions, amazing how, At Twilight the two are so hard to distinguish between.

Mon Jul 16, 12:29:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

You, my friends are far too kind. Your comments have also been thought-provoking. I may have to revisit this topic again...someday. Without a doubt, my strict Catholic upbringing exerts a strong influence on my thinking. I don't mind. I've embraced the essence of the Gospels, and find myself ever trying to be better.

Mon Jul 16, 07:59:00 PM  
Blogger Green-Eyed Girl said...

Do you have to believe in a higher power to believe there is such a thing as sin? Can you still sin even if you don't believe? And how do you reach redemption. Do you, at some point, cease to sin? For me, it doesn't seem so.

Tue Jul 17, 03:33:00 PM  
Blogger anna said...

I really have issues with the words "sinner" and "sin". Perhaps that's because I am a sinner. I just think the only things people shouldn't be doing are things that hurt others. I wish I could say I haven't done those things or currently am not doing those things, but sometimes the sinner in me is just too powerful and I surrender because it feels so damn good while I can get away with it.

That last sentence was way too long and I apologize if it wasn't coherent.

Fri Jul 20, 09:24:00 PM  
Anonymous motherwintermoon said...

Another post that went straight to my core. I agree with anon, "We all hurt, and we all hurt others."

We've been the hurter and the hurtee interchangeably or simultaneously , "blundering our way through life, tethered and led (sometimes shackled) by our heartstrings" as you so poignantly expressed it.

We each need to know something about each other's pain, past and present, to better understand each other. (That's what I like about reading blog bios and sharing mine :)

Thank you bunches for the insights into your heart and the light of hope and strength it brings to others.

Sat Jul 21, 10:28:00 AM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Now look what you've all gone and done...you've set me to mulling!

Honestly, I'm rather surprised by the wide range of views (it's the boy-who-thought-he-would-be-a-priest coming out in me). I've been pondering this term "sin." I wouldn't be surprised if I revist this topic in another post...someday.

Sat Jul 21, 02:14:00 PM  

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