I am gearing up for the upcoming Nativity Fast which begins on Nov. 15th and ends on Dec. 24th. Orthodoxy can be challenging.
I have been prepping for the upcoming fast and one of the ways I am doing this is by watching videos on vegan meal prep by Frugal, Fit Mom, Christine on Youtube. Ready vegan cookbooks and in general practicing eating bland food and using nut juices in my coffee which is awful.
The Orthodox fast for the benefits of discipline. There are set guidelines and it can get a bit complicated. It’s not a ‘vegan thing’ in the way vegans who are not Orthodox ‘do vegan’. We still eat honey and on some days fish is allowed as is oil, and wine.
The honey thing is what I am writing about today.
I found this exchange about honey on a coptic Christian website. The first comment made me laugh out loud.
The second comment is wisdom we need to remember when fasting.
Girgisantony in Faith Issues Honey is an animal product like milk and eggs are. As we all know, anything with milk or eggs are not fasting foods. So if we abstain from milk and eggs because they are animal products as we abstain from meat. So can we eat honey while fasting? If we can, why can we have honey and not milk or eggs?
- minasoliman Because Christ wants you to be sweet.
- ItalianCoptic edited November 2017 As a convert, I have found those who concentrate on the semantics of an issue tend to forget the actual meaning of it.
There are people on here and Facebook who know every detail about all Christian history, the councils, every single part of the Diving Liturgy, what Abouna should and should not be doing during a Liturgy, how we should dress in the church and even how we should be praying.
Unfortunately, when you ask the last time they went to the Diving Liturgy or Confession, they have no response because they rarely attend or confess. It’s like trying to play American football without knowing how to tackle.
We should be focusing on our fasting by changing a number of things, and incorporating others in to our daily lives. Our eating habits are certainly a part of it. So, maybe no fast food if possible? Have some home made food? Eating less or no animal products, increase our prayer, sing the hymns of the season, and have more of an awareness of Christ in our daily lives. These should be the key points to focus on during a fast.
The idea is not to focus on what we can’t or can eat, but how we can improve ourselves and become more Christ-like. Also, be practical. Honey is a valuable source of vitamins and energy for those in certain climates. Egypt fits into that. Many of these rules were put in place not knowing that the church would be international like it is today. Honey was used as medicine — and still is — for centuries. If you look at it for the perspective of those who set out the guidelines of fasting in our church, it makes sense.
Remember to keep the fast in your heart and not just on your lips. Go to liturgy while you can, another lockdown is coming. Fill yourself up with liturgy and try not to be a Pharisee!