Sunday, October 16, 2016

258 candles-days 30-22

When I was much younger I stayed in an apartment where there were often people sleeping on the couch, on the floor, in chairs. We found one drunk guy curled around the toilet. We weren't always drunk or stoned there, but it helped. We called it "The Home for Wayward Transients."

I'm reminded of that place when I read this story about volunteers who collect and repair and display discarded deities. It's a belief in many Asian nations that a business or families prosperity is improved by the presence of shrines and icons to the local gods or to the family's faith. I've made a game for myself of stepping into Asian stores and finding the shrine. (Hint: It's often near the door.) This is no different than the Christian practice of votives; indeed, it's no different than most Christian practices. What's a cross or a crucifix but an icon? But individuals feel drawn to the ceramic and cheap plastic and plaster deities enough to care for them, not out of a religious duty, but because destroying them "goes against the conscience." This is heartening and a sign that there is such a thing as an interior sense of reverence. 

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