Are you bored?

I hate being bored! My aunt once told me, “If you’re bored, then you’re boring.” There are so many things to learn, books to read, people to meet, and hobbies to master, a person should never be bored. Right? I hate to admit this, but I get bored sometimes.

I am told it is a modern phenomena. Apparently, there is no word in French for boredom, until late into 1800s. I guess most people were too busy just trying to survive, to find time to be bored. Nowadays, we are well fed, healthy, and life has been made easier by technologies, but we are bored to tears!

Boredom is a strange feeling. It fills me with ennui, longing for I know not what, fecklessness, and, too often, I stray into sins which otherwise would not have so easily enticed me. I go there, because I’m bored. I’m bored, because I am not keeping my hands busy doing something of value -work, reading, experiencing nature or other humans. I’m not doing anything of value, because I am lazy. So, in this example, the sin starts with laziness, grows into boredom, and then becomes full blown death when I stray into known areas of ungodliness.

For me, if not for any other human on earth, I am convinced that boredom is a great sin. Think about what our culture glorifies because it has moved away from finding pleasure in noble pursuits; sex and violence.   Peter Kreeft, head of the philosophy department at Boston College says

Habitual boredom, boredom not with a specific task like chopping wood ten hours a day but with everything, not only leads to sin; it is a sin. The medievals called it “sloth,” one of the Seven Deadly Sins. Sloth is not simply laziness. In fact, it does not necessarily imply any physical laziness at all. It means the passivity and inactivity of the will and the desires even in the presence of the true good. It is the soul’s refusal to eat its food. Violence is spiritual junk food, and boredom is spiritual anorexia.”  

I think we, have everything we could want, and find it boring. Life is too easy. We don’t try anything new or difficult, because we’ve lost the ethic of perseverance. I think we want something to excite us, arouse our passions, give us something to fixate on, so we can go on ignoring how disgraceful our souls have gotten.

Here’s some Good News; Jesus Christ is the most exhilarating, electrifying, life changing person in history. He will set you on a path of danger, intrigue, and, yes, even suffering. But, it will be anything but boring. If this culture is bored, it is because it has lost track of the “Jesus excitement” it once knew.

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