Immurement is a ghastly form of punishment. From wiki: “Immurement (from Latin im- “in” and murus “wall”; literally “walling in”) is a form of imprisonment, usually until death, in which a person is sealed within an enclosed space with no exits. This includes instances where people have been enclosed in extremely tight confinement, such as within a coffin. When used as a means of execution, the prisoner is simply left to die from starvation or dehydration. This form of execution is distinct from being buried alive, in which the victim typically dies of asphyxiation.”
Straddling the thin line between passion and pathology, as certain members of we faithful tend to do, there have been those who adopted a modified form of the practice as a way of ongoing, if rather straitened, life.
To wit, again from wiki: “Anchorites: A particularly severe form of asceticism within Christianity is that of anchorites, who typically allowed themselves to be immured, and subsisting on minimal food. For example, in the 4th century AD, one nun named Alexandra immured herself in a tomb for ten years with a tiny aperture enabling her to receive meager provisions. Saint Jerome (c. 340–420) spoke of one follower who spent his entire life in a cistern, consuming no more than five figs a day.”
I’d read of such people somewhere along the line: nuns who shut themselves up except for a tiny opening through which they’d receive food, the Eucharist, and visitors seeking spiritual guidance. Naturally, I was compelled–cranks, very possibly, and yet…
Anyway, the other morning I was sitting out front, admiring the light filtering through the ocotillo-spine fence and realizing I’ve barely been leaving my house except for long walks and supplies, and I thought: I’m immured!
Think about it. I’m surrounded by an enclosure, on all four sides. I actually have a box of figs in the fridge. Leave out the people approaching for spiritual guidance…the holiness…the formal vow….okay, so maybe I’m not actually immured. I’m more like one of those six-year-old boys who drapes a blanket around his shoulders, steals a candle from the living room, and makes his little friends gather round a makeshift altar while he pretends to be a priest.
Whatever–I’m having the time of my life. All kidding aside, the 2020 lockdown, if not for the terrible suffering wreaked by the pandemic, suited me to a T. Continuing with the theme, soaring summer temps in Tucson make for a day that is naturally spent close to home. Walking early in the morning or evening is to me heaven (might be a bit on the warm side for others, but I am one of those people who is, annoyingly, always “cold”).
Speaking of pretending, illusion etc. I have also become obsessed, not too strong a word, with learning how to shoot and edit YouTube (or really any kind of) videos. Let’s pretend…No. Not that we’re YouTube “stars.” But that our desires, no matter how seemingly childish, to light the world on fire with Christ somehow, somewhere, avail.