A young seeker approached an elderly monk asking: "What do you do in the monastery?" The old monk replied: "Oh, well, we fall down and we get up. We fall back down again and we get back up. And then we fall down and get up again."I came across this quote early in my inquiry into Orthodoxy, and it's stayed with me. Of my experience with monastics they'd say that it's true - but also that it applies to the laity as well. And I'd agree. Falling down, getting up again, saying Kyrie eleison (Lord, have mercy) and moving on. I remarked to someone tonight that I was such a good person before I got into this Orthodoxy stuff, and now look at me! Tongue firmly in cheek, of course. He laughed, too, since he knew what I was getting at. We're not allowed to remain comfortable in the bad habits we've formed and ignored, so we become aware of them, and that's when the quote above comes into play. Here's another brilliant one I found tonight:
No matter how right you may be on various points, you must be diplomatic also. The first and important thing is not rightness at all, but Christian love and harmony. Most crazy converts have been right in the criticisms that led to their downfall; but they were lacking in Christian love and charity and so went off the deep end, needlessly alienating people around them and finally finding themselves all alone in their rightness and self-righteousness. Don't you follow them!Yeowch. He's right too. I'm trying to be good.
- Fr Seraphim Rose
Okay, enough religion, back to your regularly scheduled stitchyness before I go run off to bed.
I have photos! Okay, one of them is religous...but it's stitching, so that makes it alright ;)
Firstly, here's my St Nicholas icon, as of Thursday and a few hours' work:
And another photo after some serious work last night:
The diagonal you can start to see appearing at the bottom right of the ornament is the edge of the border, which is quite cool. I'm trying to get the border filled in a bit more before I start on the inside though. The shading in this is awesome, seriously. In reality, the threads seem to glow. The red square outlines will be filled in with a couple more shades of red and they're rubies, there'll be a sapphire in the centre. This is a commission for a friend of mine who was named for the Saint, which I figured I'd better get back into working on. So I did. It's fun! Such happy colours.
On the other hand, here's what I worked on the most on Thursday - SK Iris Keeper. Gloomy colours, but pretty.
The holes are more obvious now - I need to get the colours I'm missing. About 300 stitches are left of this row, not counting holes :)
Anyway, I should duck off to bed. It's late. Goodnight!