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Archive for January, 2012

Aquinas’ Plan for Perfecting Memory Skills

Thomas Aquinas –

“There are four things whereby a man perfects his memory.”

“First, when a man wishes to remember a thing, he should take some suitable yet unwonted (unusual) illustration of it, since the unwonted strikes us more, and so makes a greater and stronger impression on the mind.

Secondly, whatever a man wishes to retain in his memory he must carefully consider to put in order, so that he may pass easily from one memory to another.

Thirdly, we must be anxious and earnest about the things we wish to remember, because the more a thing is impressed on the mind, the less it is liable to slip out of it.

Fourthly, we should often reflect on the things we wish to remember… wherefore when we reflect on a thing frequently,we quickly call it to mind, through passing from one thing to another by a kind of natural order.”

Which, translated means:

1) Make weird, but G-rated mental pictures of what you want to remember – it will stay in there better.

2) Put the pictures in order so one memory item flows logically to the next.

3) Put in some good mental effort. Work hard to really impress it in your mind.

4) Review often. Review cuts down on recall time.

Winter Tangle, Unraveled

Our back yard after the only snow so far this winter. The dark depths of the snow-filled woods contrast with the emerging light of the sky, reminiscent of the confused, dark tangle which in which we choose to exist when the clear, bright light of Christ is just overhead, if we would only open our eyes and look up!

Through the Trappings

This view through the wreath at St. Leo's in Fairfax, VA reminds us to look through the beautiful trappings of the season to the Heart of the Universe inside. Christ, here to stay with us forever in the Tabernacle, and in our hearts, if we let him.

On the 12th Day of Christmas…

To Honor the final day of Christmas, this picture from my cell phone camera at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. I love how the mosaic of Christ, the daylight from the rose window, and the Christmas lights all point us to the same conclusion: Christ is the Lux Mundi! Gloria!

Solemnity! Mary, Mother of God


A new statue outside our Church, captured on my cellphone camera. God clothed her in her colors that morning!


Go to Mass!

It’s a huge day of celebration in the Catholic Church, and New Year’s Day, of course.

A solemnity is the highest level of holiday celebration we have, and we save it for big deal occasions.

Like Sundays.  And Mary on New Year’s.  And Christmas and Epiphany.  And Easter.  St. Joseph, the Annunciation, Holy Trinity Sunday, and Corpus Christi, Sacred Heart, and the Birth of St. John the Baptist, too.  Also, the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul (Apostles), and the Assumption of Mary.

Some solemnities are Holy Days of Obligation, like this one.

Make God happy!

 Go to Mass!

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