So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter (2 Thess. 2:15). Guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the godless chatter and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge, for by professing it some have missed the mark as regards faith (1 Tim. 6:21-22).

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Going It Alone. New trends in narcissism and (sad) attempts to redefine marriage... yet again.

Self-marriage or sologamy is marriage by a person to oneself. It is known as a commitment that values self-love, and self-compassion. Supporters of the practice argue that it leads to a happier life. The idea of such a ceremony is also described in the book Quirkyalone: a manifesto for uncompromising romantics by Sasha Caden. It can also refer to a self-uniting marriage, that is a marriage without an officiant.—Wikipedia.
... because it "feels" right so to do.

An excerpt from an article by Chalotte Lytton at The Telegraph entitled I me wed: why are more women choosing to marry themselves?
[Italics added]
When 38-year-old Sophie Tanner celebrated her second wedding anniversary on Tuesday, there were none of the usual trappings – no flowers or romantic meal for two, no card sealed with a kiss.

It’s not that her other half is remiss, but that on May 16, 2015, when the PR consultant took her vows on the steps of Brighton’s Unitarian Church (surprise... not), the person she swore to cherish for eternity was, well, herself.

“I literally had the idea when I was lying in bed recovering from flu and a bad relationship,” she remembers. (Ok, she was ill and perhaps upset when she came up with her croutons-for-brains idea.)  “Everyone celebrates getting together with someone and getting married, but there’s no milestone in society that celebrates escaping something awful or returning to your own happiness and contentment.”

Initially, Sophie’s idea was to write a book in which a woman married herself, but after two years researching sologamy – people who commit to themselves – for her novel, Happily, she was sold. (Self-love at first sight?)

“By the end of that journey I was such an advocate for it as a concept that I thought I’d better do it myself,” she says. “It felt like an obvious step, and all of my friends and family had become really into it, so by the time I said I wanted my own wedding, they were on board (the Titanic).”

Telegraph/Sophie Tanner
“Initially, I thought of the wedding as a light-hearted thing, and held it during the Brighton Fringe so passers-by could be a part of it,” she explains. “But I got really nervous the day before. It felt like a really important thing to be doing, especially as it was one of the first sologamous marriages many people had seen (... and hopefully one of the last. But... don't get your hopes up.). A few people told me it was the best wedding they’d ever been to. The atmosphere was amazing and it felt really powerful.”

While solo ceremonies such as Sophie’s are unlikely to unseat the traditional union for two, they do seem to be on the rise; part of a much bigger social trend for women rejecting the traditional timeline of their mothers and grandmothers, and forging an independent path, worlds away from the spinster stereotype.
Photos have a way of saying more about us (and those whose expressions, facial or fashion, are captured in the photo) than we intend. Wouldn't a selfie have been most appropriate for a sologamist event?

How does one define fidelity in sologamy? Does said lifestyle tolerate/condone/permit/abhor/forbid "friends with benefits"? Imagine the surprise/upset/rage if or when she learns she has cheated on herself.

Solitary Confinement

She shouldn't be surprised should she soon discover that she and she alone is responsible for her solo act turning into a prison.

By contrast, something beautiful for God.
What is the Consecration of Virgins? 
"The custom of consecrating women to a life of virginity flourished even in the early Church. It led to the formation of a solemn rite constituting the candidate a sacred person, a surpassing sign of the Church’s love for Christ, and an eschatological image of the world to come and the glory of the heavenly Bride of Christ.” [Prænotanda to the Rite of Consecration to a Life of Virginity]

The consecrated virgin is a particularly striking sign of the love of the Church, the Bride, for Christ, her Bridegroom. At the same time, the consecrated virgin is a faithful reminder of the life which is to be ours in the Kingdom of Heaven, life belonging completely to Christ. The form of life of the consecrated virgin living in the world is a most intimate union with Christ, which is reflected in the ancient title given to the consecrated virgin, “bride of Christ.” Echoed in the refrain from the Rite of Consecration, the consecrated virgin sings, “I am espoused to him whom the angels serve; sun and moon stand in wonder at his glory.” [No. 29]

The consecrated virgin offers the gift of her physical virginity to Christ, as a sign of the dedication of her entire being to Him. Through the Rite of Consecration, the Church receives the gift of the virgin and calls down upon her the grace of the Holy Spirit that she may never fail in her resolve to live in perfect continence for the sake of Christ and His Church. [Taken from Archbishop Raymond L. Burke, “Vocations to the Consecrated Life,” St. Louis Review Online, August 13, 2004]

The Consecration of a Virgin is one of the oldest sacramentals in the Church, and one of the (good) fruits of Vatican II was the restoration of this profound blessing on virgins living in the world. The promulgation of this restored Rite for women living in the world was on 31 May 1970. Through this sacramental, the virgin renews her resolve to live in perpetual virginity for God and is set aside as sacred, espoused to Christ and belonging only to Him alone. It is God Himself who accepts her resolution and makes it spiritually fruitful by the power of the Holy Spirit. This sacramental is reserved to the Bishop of the diocese. The consecrated virgin shares intimately in the nature and mission of the Church: she is a living image of the Church's love for her Spouse while sharing in His redemptive mission. (And sologamy can compare to that how?)

The consecrated virgin lives in full communion with the Church through her spiritual bond with her Bishop, the representative of Jesus Christ in her diocese; and she shares in the concerns of her diocese through their on-going communication. The consecrated virgin is responsible to pray the Liturgy of the Hours. She receives the sacraments regularly and is faithful to private prayer. She keeps as a special focus of her prayer the intentions of her Bishop and clergy and the needs of her diocese. Consecrated virginity is a distinct form of consecrated life in the Church. Therefore, while it is related to other forms of consecrated life, it is not identical to any of them. The consecrated virgin living in the world, as expressed in Canon 604, is irrevocably "consecrated to God, mystically espoused to Christ and dedicated to the service of the Church, when the diocesan bishop consecrates [her] according to the approved liturgical rite."

The consecrated virgin understands the positive value of living for the Lord in the midst of the world. She does not wear a habit or veil, nor does she use the title “Sister.” While she may associate with other consecrated virgins for friendship and mutual encouragement, she lives her vocation individually. She provides completely for her own material needs, including medical care and retirement resources, through employment, pension, or other means. At no time is her diocese financially responsible for her. Not restricted to a particular apostolate, she is free to choose her own way of serving the church according to her natural and spiritual gifts. Consecrated virgins usually offer their free time, as they are able, to their parish, diocese, or Church-sponsored association. Some volunteer their time also in civic responsibilities.

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