Oops! I Did It Again
Yesterday I got messed up on the numbering or so I thought. The post for Sunday, August 23rd was Pentecost 93 but I titled it in my log as Pentecost 94. Was it because I was trying to get the post online in-between heavy thunderstorms that were accompanied by numerous lightning strikes? Was I caught up in the nostalgia of it being a family member’s birthday? Was I simply neglectful in my record-keeping or perhaps just got ahead of myself?
The fact is I am human. I messed up because I am human; “comes with the territory” you might say. This would not be the first time I had such an error with the numbering and it is exactly the reason why I have these divisions. Posting 365-plus essays or articles a year, one every day on this website as well as guest posts means I have a lot of work to sort and organize. I use the Christian calendar as it is used by more people than any other. I think in terms of the Episcopal Church seasonal calendar so that was my filing system. Still, even with what I truly like as a filing system, I make mistakes.
One of the complaints people have with the Episcopal Church seasons, based upon the Anglican Church seasons, is the origin of some of the seasons themselves. They can be traced to not only Celtic pagan festivals but also those of both Roman and Greek mythology. For many people, this makes them the antithesis of anything having to do with religion. I respect those opinions but I do not adopt them.
I like my numbering system. I have considered using the Julian calendar, especially for this series about mythology but decided against it, once again simply based on universal use of calendars. So I have what should be a really easy system of numbering, one I think is useful and practical, and one that is not that difficult. I do not follow the church calendar exactly as I number straight through the season and do not omit Sundays as the church does. (The Church considers Sundays to be days of festival or feast days, celebratory times and they have their own identifying numbering system.) But I do follow the basic numbering system for integers: 1 followed 2 followed 3, etc.
And yet, I still messed up. Or so I thought. If you haven’t by now gone back and reread yesterday’s post, don’t bother. You see, I went to bed last night after checking my log and realized I had already put a title in for today’s date. Oops! I messed up. This morning I began by pulling up yesterday’s post so I could correct my numbering error. I had decided to admit my mistake and use it as a lead-in for today’s topic – deity of help, a deity of comfort, a deity of refuge from yes, even ourselves.
I had even started this post and then realized “No time like the present” is really good advice. I stopped what I was doing to correct my numbering error on yesterday’s post about sufficient strength. Imagine my surprise when I realized I had numbered it correctly! I had put down a title on my log for today that covers a subject I will discuss later this week. I really had not made an error, just gotten ahead of myself on my own log, a log that contains side notes in the margins, erasures, etc. I had spent about an hour last night and another two this morning thinking I had made a mistake, mentally berating myself, only to learn it was all a ….mistake, a mistake about a mistake!
I hope you are smiling or even laughing at this point because I certainly am. The thing is that we often think we have screwed up. More than that, we frequently think others have. Humans are not perfect. We spend a great deal of time trying to run from that fact. Apparently, mankind has always done that.
I confess I have never thought of ancient man being bothered by cellulose or having a bad hair day. I mean, really. Most depictions of Neanderthal man are the epitome of a bad hair day. Still, there are several names for the monotheistic deity of the Abrahamic religious mythologies that imply our ancestors had self-doubts.
Elohim Ozer Li, the god of my help, and Elohe Tishuathi, the god of my salvation are just two. We humans can be quite the judgmental lot. Sit in a coffee shop and I defy you not to have judgmental opinions about the people that walk in. It is just in our nature. Science tells us that these thoughts are the result of our brain working and help in our survival. We determine who seems to pose a threat, subconsciously pick out who we might turn to in time of an emergency, and/or decide who si wearing the latest fashion the best…or not. We have the minds to think and so we do.
I applaud anyone who engages in thinking. Thinking is not really the issue. What follows those thought processes is. Having decided someone is simply wearing despicable clothes, do you then knock over their drink? Do you assume that because a woman took time with her appearance that she is asking to be attacked? Is someone stupid simply based upon their hair color or number of tattoos?
At some point in time, we will all need help. Maybe it is because we have made a mistake. Maybe it is because we need a doctor’s expertise or an organ transplant. When a loved one needs a blood transfusion to save their life, are you really going to ask how low the donor’s belt was on their pants or if they were of a certain faith? I hope not.
Life is about living and that living is going to include those “Oops!” moments. It is inevitable. Thankfully, we have each other to help us live, to provide support, to be charitable in not only our thoughts but in our actions. Thankfully, we have Elohim Machase Lanu, the God our refuge.
Have a great Monday or, in some parts, Tuesday. Make it a great week and cut yourself some slack when you act … human! Better yet, be a refuge for another. All it takes is a smile.