Lesser Known…

This week there are a bunch of random observances to start off the Summer Solstice happens as well as International Surfing Day, International Yoga Day, World Music Day, Go Skateboarding Day, World Humanist Day, and World Hydrography Day.  Talk about a busy day after surfing, skateboarding and doing yoga we need to listen to music and reflect on hydrographers as well as Humanists.  These are not even the weirdest of observances this week as there are some stranger oddly more specific days  Global Wind Day on June 15 when wind energy is celebrated; World Day to Combat Deforestation and Drought on the 17th; and I think the most bizarre day World Sauntering Day on the 19th when we are encouraged to take it easy, slow down and stop to smell the roses.

Bloomsday is also this week made famous by James Joyce’s Ulysses, which takes place on June 16. Ulysses tells of the adventures that Leopold Bloom’s journey on June 16th, This is why it is called Bloomsday, this day has made its way into The Producers at least the musical version as the character Leo Bloom asks when is it going to Leo Bloom’s Day on June 16.

Marina the Monk (died 19 July 750 AD)
This has to be one of the better Saint stories out there. Marina was the daughter of wealthy Christian parents, her mother died while she was young and her father raised Marina. When she got to marrying age her father decided that after Marina was married he would become a monk at the Monastery of Qannoubine in the Kadisha Valley , when Marina heard this she asked why he was going “to save his own soul and destroy mine?” Her father asked her what about you, since you are a woman. At this Marina renounced being a woman and would wear the clothing of a monk.  So Marina and her father set off for the Kadisha Valley, where they shared a cell. After ten years her father died and no one knew that she was a woman. Once the Abbot sent Marina and two other monks to do some business which was far from the monastery, so they stayed at an inn that evening. Also staying at the inn was a solider who became infatuated and raped the innkeeper’s daughter, and the solider told the daughter to say that it was Marina who had done it. When the inn keeper found out he went to the Abbot and was furious about what had happened. The Abbot called Marina and reprimanded her severely, when she realized what was happening she started weeping  admitted the sin and asked for forgiveness. Marina was told to leave, she didn’t go far as she was at the gates for the next ten year where she raised the innkeeper’s daughter’s child. The monks wore down the abbot and let Marina back into the monastery where hard labor was added to her regular monk duties. Around the age of 40 she became sick and died three days later. When a monk was cleaning and changing her for funeral prayers they discovered that the monk was a woman. The abbot when seeing the body wept bitterly, he then in turn brought the innkeeper who also wept  and eventually after Marina was buried the solider and the innkeeper’s daughter came and admitted what had happened, asking for forgiveness and wept as well.

 

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