Archive for August, 2007

Office of Readings for Tuesday 28 August 2007

Today is the Memorial of St Augustine of Hippo.

Reading from The Confessions of Saint Augustine

O Eternal Truth, true love and beloved eternity

Urged to reflect upon myself, I entered under your guidance the innermost places of my being; but only because you had become my helper was I able to do so. I entered, then, and with the vision of my spirit, such as it was, I saw the incommutable light far above my spiritual ken and transcending my mind: not this common light which every carnal eye can see, nor any light of the same order; but greater, as though this common light were shining much more powerfully, far more brightly, and so extensively as to fill the universe. The light I saw was not the common light at all, but something different, utterly different, from all those things. Nor was it higher than my mind in the sense that oil floats on water or the sky is above the earth; it was exalted because this very light made me, and I was below it because by it I was made. Anyone who knows truth knows this light.

O eternal Truth, true Love, and beloved Eternity, you are my God, and for you I sigh day and night. As I first began to know you, you lifted me up and showed me that, while that which I might see exists indeed, I was not yet capable of seeing it. Your rays beamed intensely on me, beating back my feeble gaze, and I trembled with love and dread. I knew myself to be far away from you in a region of unlikeness, and I seemed to hear your voice from on high: “I am the food of the mature: grow, then, and you shall eat me. You will not change me into yourself like bodily food; but you will be changed into me”.

Accordingly I looked for a way to gain the strength I needed to enjoy you, but I did not find it until I embraced the mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, who is also God, supreme over all things and blessed for ever. He called out, proclaiming I am the Way and Truth and the Life, nor had I known him as the food which, though I was not yet strong enough to eat it, he had mingled with our flesh, for the Word became flesh so that your Wisdom, through whom you created all things, might become for us the milk adapted to our infancy.

Late have I loved you, Beauty so ancient and so new, late have I loved you!
Lo, you were within,
but I outside, seeking there for you,
and upon the shapely things you have made
I rushed headlong – I, misshapen.
You were with me, but I was not with you.
They held me back far from you,
those things which would have no being,
were they not in you.
You called, shouted, broke through my deafness;
you flared, blazed, banished my blindness;
you lavished your fragrance, I gasped; and now I pant for you;
I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst;
you touched me, and I burned for your peace.

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20岁操劳

My 20th birthday was last week. My brother congratulated me by saying, ‘Happy birthday! Another day closer to death!’ Thanks a lot. I needed that reality check.

I had dinner with Pei Suan on Thursday night. She said I look very 操劳. Alfred said the same thing the next day when we went to see the Bourne Ultimatum.

Damn, my eyebags are getting worse. It’s all those late nights man, I should have seen this coming. At least my acne isn’t too bad. I really need to go to bed earlier. The army’s sleeping hours are going to kill me. And I haven’t been exercising since I started work. I’m going to die on the island of rubber plantations.

I’m 20 already, and I should reflect on my life during the past two decades. Today’s Office of Readings are very timely.

Exit light, enter night

Why the hell would I title this after a Metallica song, especially when I don’t listen to them? Because I hear this damn song everyday on the desktop demo set on display!

Now imagine listening to this song on loop, for a few hours. It was quite bad, so bad that my colleague was begging me to change the song. On the other hand, there are plenty of Chinese pop MVs on the demo set laptops to distract me.

There are plenty of girls passing by to look at also. We always keep our eyes peeled for a certain manager from a competing shop. She’s the bomb!

I’m quite satisfied with my last paycheck and commission, but seriously, work is beginning to take its toil. Each day I’m worrying about how to sell the sets at such ridiculously low prices while trying to achieve as high a commission as possible. I thought convincing customers to buy was bad enough. Now I need to worry about how much money I can make. Some customers are too much; they won’t even let me earn my living.

Maybe the next time you bargain, you’ll consider the livelihood of the salesman. It’s not easy being a salesman. Bloody idiots, bargain bargain bargain, you want me to eat dirt is it? I remember on more than one occasion:

Me: Sir, this software is going for 50% discount. You can purchase it at $50.

Customer: zha kor nia! (fifty dollars only!) Give me la!

Give me la?! I should be asking you to give me fifty dollars you piece of dung! I don’t even earn than much in a day!

Aunty Phyllis is right; I think I’m getting stressed. When she sees Mum in Church, she says that Mum says that I always look stressed. I don’t know, maybe it’s due to the fact that I always go to bed so late. Then again, why do my parents have to tell me stuff through other people? But I digress.

Need I be so worked up? Actually I enjoy this job better than my previous one. Hell, sitting in a cold office, it is a struggle to keep awake. With this sales job, I need not worry about dozing off. There is never a dull moment, unless of course it is a very quiet weekday.

I ran into Father David on my Friday off day. I said I would try to rush down for Sunday’s meeting as I was coming from work.

Father David: You know, it’s a sin to work on Sunday…

Me: Yes, but I don’t miss Mass.

Father David: But still….

Me: =P

And the Mass readings for 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time. The first reading read, ‘Vanity of vanities, all is vanity!’ The Gospel talked about the man hoarding wealth and not thinking of what happens when he dies.

I don’t want to turn out like that fool. Ever since I started work I haven’t been attending my daily Masses or going to Adoration as often. I know, I need to plan my time better, but it has been difficult. I have such lousy discipline, which is manifested by the fact that I’m typing this instead of going to bed. But really, I need to get this off my chest.

St Lucy of Syracuse, patron of salesmen, pray for us.

P.S Here’s how the song goes anyway:

Enter sandman – Metallica

Say your prayers little one
Dont forget, my son
To include everyone

Tuck you in, warm within
Keep you free from sin
Till the sandman he comes

Sleep with one eye open
Gripping your pillow tight

Exit light
Enter night
Take my hand
Off to never never land

Somethings wrong, shut the light
Heavy thoughts tonight
And they arent of snow white

Dreams of war, dreams of liars
Dreams of dragons fire
And of things that will bite

Sleep with one eye open
Gripping your pillow tight

Exit light
Enter night
Take my hand
Off to never never land

Now I lay me down to sleep
Pray the lord my soul to keep
If I die before I wake
Pray the lord my soul to take

Hush little baby, dont say a word
And never mind that noise you heard
Its just the beast under your bed,
In your closet, in your head

Exit light
Enter night
Grain of sand

Exit light
Enter night
Take my hand
We’re off to never never land


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Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us

Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us

Stella Matutina, ora pro nobis

Our Lady of Perpetual Succor, pray for us

St Michael the Archangel, pray for us

St Jude, pray for us

St Benedict, pray for us

St Dominic, pray for us

St Anthony, pray for us