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March 9th, 2011
12:53 PM ET

Time: Giving up guilty pleasures for lent

Sure, NewsFeed isn't Catholic. (Do websites have religions? If so, we're devotees of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.) Even so, we think Lent is a great way to temporarily rid ourselves of our guiltiest of pleasures. But instead of ditching chocolate or caffeine, NewsFeed's writers are pondering 40 days without cute kitten pictures. Can we do it? Probably not. But root for us anyway.

See the gallery on TIME.com
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Culture & Science

soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. PRISM 1234

    LOL! ..... If they ar guilty pleasures, then they should be given up for good, not just for Lent. But Lent is the right start, especially when one takes tame and makes effort to focus their mind on things of eternal value. There is much to think about... For me to know that this is theseason of Jesus' Christ preparation for what He would go through fo me, so I would have place in His Kingdom, it fills my heart with such joy and gratefulness, that it is hard to contain it in my human frame. Praise be to God for His wonderful gift to mankind!
    🙂

    March 10, 2011 at 10:16 pm |
  2. Hey

    I do not pick one day in spring to suddenly stop doing or consuming something. I just stop whenever I want. All it takes is a little will power and the ability to turn your mind away or focus on other things. Why would anyone pick an arbitrary day for something like this? It's insane. If people can't control themselves, maybe they need help.

    March 10, 2011 at 2:26 am |
  3. T-party

    Justina, I really do not doubt for a second a God exists. I have just never seen,heard from God. If he exists I appreciate my life beautiful family. I am grateful for many things. Meanwhile I am agnostic. I do know people who had death and back experiences and they tell me about a spiritual afterlife.

    March 9, 2011 at 10:56 pm |
    • Justina

      T-party, the only reliable and proven thing in this world is the Bible, God's written revelation. Read it instead of writing vain things here.

      March 9, 2011 at 11:45 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @Justina

      Hi -Justina...

      I'm sincerely curious as to how you 'know' that the 'only' reliable and 'proven' thing in this world is the Bible, as opposed to say... the people, (and I am one to be included in this crowd) that @T-Party talks about having literal experiences of having an NDE (Near Death Experience), where we often find the experiences of meeting our past loved ones... and a loving creator...?

      Peace...

      March 10, 2011 at 2:01 am |
    • Justina

      @Peace2all, the nature of the content of the Bible and its effects on humans in the entire history. Look for all honorable men and women – they were influenced by the Bible and Judeo-Christian values directly or indirectly, nothing else. No other such lofty thing as the Bible exists in our known world. Any NDE is a mere joke comparing to the depth of the Bible though it can be verified by the Bible as well.

      March 10, 2011 at 4:41 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Justina
      Firstly, the bible cannot have influenced all of human history as it has not existed that long. Even if we postulate for argument's sake a 6000 year old earth, the gospel of Jesus has only been around for a third of that.
      Secondly, I would ask you please to define "honourable".
      Do you believe that there have never been any honourable Asians, Inuit, American Indians, Maoris, New Guineans, Pakistanis, Indians, etc?
      Other books that have had enormous impact on humanity include the I Ching (which pre-dates the New Testament by 500 years) and the Hindu Upanishads (300 years older than NT).
      As an American, your historical education was most likely limited to North American and European perpectives.

      And when last I checked, Diogenes was still on his hunt.

      March 10, 2011 at 8:45 am |
  4. T-party

    I am agnostic I believe its good to work very hard,I like the golden rule, its good to sacrifice it builds character.

    March 9, 2011 at 10:06 pm |
    • Justina

      T-party, you need more than that. You need to acknowledge the Creator God as a creature. No person can be good if he ignores his own good parents. The same thing.

      March 9, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
    • blessedgeek

      The differences between Religion and Faith are

      Religion:
      you profess that you cannot use human logic to explain god.

      Faith:
      you proceed to use human logic to explain why you cannot use human logic to explain god.

      Religion:
      you profess that you cannot use human logic to explain why your religion is the one and only truth.

      Faith in action:
      you proceed to use convoluted human logic to explain why your religion is the one and only truth.

      Religion:
      you profess that you should not use human logic to understand the mercy of god

      Faith in action:
      you proceed to use convoluted human logic to explain the dispensation, predestination mechanisms of why people whose human logic fail to see the mercy of god would still go to hell as a punishment.

      Religion:
      I stand at the door and knock.

      Faith:
      If you are a responsible person enough to doubt that the person at the door would not rob you and that if you refuse to open the door for being cautious, then you are irresponsible and deviant.

      March 10, 2011 at 12:35 am |
  5. Don

    Every year I give up lent for lent. Mainly because I'm an atheist.

    March 9, 2011 at 9:57 pm |
  6. The Truth

    I'm not joking when I say that still to this day, I don't eat fish thanks to my parents forcing me to eat it during lent as a child. It is just not enjoyable as a result. Thanks Mom, Dad and the Catholic Church!

    Luckily for me though, I am fine with shellfish.... so lobster, crab and shrimp are all still on my palate's menu. LOL

    March 9, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • Justina

      The-truth, your parents and Catholic Church did a great favor to our Planet Earth. Minimize your consumption of seahood; the sea is dying everywhere.

      March 9, 2011 at 9:39 pm |
  7. David Johnson

    @HeavenSent

    Satan also took Jesus to a high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world. This implies that the earth was flat.

    Don't you think Satan and Jesus should have known the earth is not flat?

    Cheers!

    March 9, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • Justina

      David, I didn't know the human kingdoms were visible from the space. All you see will be ocean, land and clouds.

      March 9, 2011 at 9:38 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Justina

      You said: "I didn't know the human kingdoms were visible from the space. All you see will be ocean, land and clouds."

      Yep, even from the moon, you couldn't see all the kingdoms of the earth...If that is what you are pointing out.?

      Even if Satan had taken Christ to Everest, He would not have been able to see all the kingdoms of the world. The earth is a sphere. But the biblical authors obviously did not know this. In the time of Jesus, Middle Eastern people believed the world was flat. Satan and the baby Jesus should have known better. The fact they didn't, shows the bible is not divinely inspired.

      Cheers!

      March 10, 2011 at 8:05 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      What happened there on that mountain was in spiritual relm. Yes, Jesus was physicaly on the mountain, but He did see all the kingdoms of the earth, all lined up, one by one, because God put it on disposal of satan to show it to Him, but not the way you in your mind percieve it. You see, that's the real example how natural man can't understand the things of God, because they are not earthly, or discerned by human ability ..

      March 10, 2011 at 11:09 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @PRISM 1234

      You said: "What happened there on that mountain was in spiritual relm. Yes, Jesus was physicaly on the mountain, but He did see all the kingdoms of the earth, all lined up, one by one, because God put it on disposal of satan to show it to Him, but not the way you in your mind percieve it.

      Aww! Were gonna apply the "it was magic" defense, coupled with the "not discernable by humans" excuse! LOL

      Let's look at the verse:

      Mathew 4:8
      "Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them"

      I watch 'Man Vs Wild', now and again. Bear Grylls is placed in remote locations, and expected to survive with minimal equipment. On almost every show, Bear either climbs a mountain, a sand dune, or a tree, with the intention of using the height to see as much of the lay of the land, as possible.

      Satan took Jesus to an exceedingly high mountain... Clearly, the intent was to use the height to see all the kingdoms of the flat earth. If Satan was just going to show Jesus the kingdoms using magic, then the trip to the mountain would not have been necessary. Your explanation is pure Evangelical spin.

      Evangelicals engage in theological gymnastics to try to explain-away bible verses that are obviously incorrect / dumb.

      Spin it like a pinwheel, Sparky. The verse says what it says. It is what it is.

      You said: "You see, that's the real example how natural man can't understand the things of God, because they are not earthly, or discerned by human ability .."

      When believers are challenged, and their arguments have proven inadequate, they always fall back on humans not being able to fathom god. It is their panic room. A safe place where they can hide their god, until the danger has passed.

      A rational adult should believe that beings, that exist, should be evident in the physical world that we live in. They should be subject to the laws of physics. Magic, should be left to very young children. Magic is just delusion.

      Evangelical Rule of Thumb: If a bible verse furthers the cause, it is to be taken literally. If a bible verse is detrimental to the cause, it is either: taken out of context; is allegorical; refers to another verse somewhere else; is a translation or copyist's error; means something other than what it actually says; Is a mystery of god or not discernable by humans; or is just plain magic.

      Cheers!

      March 11, 2011 at 10:21 am |
  8. HeavenSent

    You can read why we fast by reading the Books of Matthew 4:1-11; Luke 4:1-13 when Jesus was tempted by the devil as he fasted for 40 days and 40 nights in the wilderness. What happened to Jesus, can happen to all of us while living in our flesh bodies on earth. Earth is satan's kingdom as he tries to get as many of God's children (taking their souls) to follow him to the eternal flames for every more, then zap, wiped out for ever more.

    Amen.

    March 9, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @HeavenSent

      You should post a warning, before you comment. Something like: "WARNING" The following is just my opinion and is probably b.s. I have no evidence that any of it is true.

      You have some weird beliefs, even for an Evangelical. Like Eve having Satan's baby (baby Cain) and PreAdamic humanoids.
      Which is what happens when you read and comprehend the bible on your own.

      You said: "Earth is satan's kingdom as he tries to get as many of God's children (taking their souls) to follow him to the eternal flames for every more, then zap, wiped out for ever more."

      There is no evidence for a soul. Our obviously material brains contain all that we are. All that we have experienced, all that we have learned, all of our perceptions. When we die, our brains cease to function. We no longer exist. All that we were, is no more.

      Evidence to support this argument, is that disease, drugs, and injuries affect our ability to think. Our personalities to change. If our mind and personality was immaterial and separate from our physical bodies, our thinking and personalities would not be affected.

      Our brains are constantly generating thoughts. Brain chemistry determines our emotions. We can't really tell, that these thoughts and emotions originate in our brains. It's easy for Believers to perceive thoughts and feelings, generated by their brains, as coming from outside themselves. *sigh*

      Jesus? Is that you? LOL

      Cheers!

      March 9, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
    • The Truth

      @David Johnson "@HeavenSent You should post a warning, before you comment. Something like: "WARNING" The following is just my opinion and is probably b.s. I have no evidence that any of it is true."

      LMAO... no truer words have eve been spoken.

      March 9, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  9. David Johnson

    I gave up god...

    March 9, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Justina

      David, give up your stupidity even for a day.

      March 9, 2011 at 9:48 pm |
  10. Wanda Foster

    I watched a little bit of the discussion about giving up things for lent. The question was asked as if everybody does it or is religious and therefore considers this. I don't, and many other people don't. Why must we pervasively act as if all Christians are catholic with a little or a big C. I'm not Christian, but I grew up in another Christian faith, and they never even discuss lent or any of these punishing Catholic ideas.

    March 9, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  11. TheRationale

    You know I have heard some sick stuff from religions. I had thought I'd heard the worst of the worse – holy wars, torture, genocide, the works.

    But 40 days without cute kitten pictures? Have you no decency, Time?

    March 9, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  12. The Bobinator

    I'll give up the concept that I'm a sinner by design and that it's all my fault!

    March 9, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
    • Jesusfreakazoid

      It is your fault! Now put some cash in the collection plate.

      March 9, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
    • Justina

      No, you must give up your life on the collection plate. Down with your money! (Acts 8:20)

      March 9, 2011 at 9:43 pm |
  13. Bob McCoy

    I gave up guilt!

    March 9, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  14. Playgurl89

    I'm not religious, but I will take this time to give up something for my greater good. I am giving up saying anything negative. :). Ready set GO!

    March 9, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.