Monday, August 27, 2007

The Food of Strong Men

Dreams are strange. It goes without saying, I realize, but nevertheless it seems the thing to say here before I share this dream with you. There's something captivating about dreams - all this forceful emotion and clear thought injected into sorting, nonsensical images that flicker arbitrarily in our brains.
     And so I dreamed all last night of receiving the Eucharist - the Mystery that is our very Lord. But I dreamed of potato chips with ridges instead of communion wafers. And as we sat in our pews, the bowl of chips was passed around the pews as if I were an Evangelical. The bowl was passed to me and somehow, terribly, the bowl spilled all over the floor at my feet. I was horrified. Here at my feet was our Lord. I waited until the liturgy was over and approached a woman who knows how such matters are handled and she said they had a special vacuum cleaner to handle such mishaps. But then, five minutes later, she returned and said it was unavailable, that it would have to wait until after the following liturgy. And so I crawled onto the floor and shielded my fragile Lord with my body, wrapping myself around Him as the pews filled with worshippers. One man began to stamp the chips with perverse delight. So I began to eat the body of our Lord off the floor. I filled myself with Him.

     “I am the food of strong men; grow and you shall feed on me; but you shall not change me, like the food of your flesh, into yourself, but you shall be changed into my likeness” (St Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, on Christ and Eucharist).

     I know it sounds ridiculous, but of course it didn't feel so - the stuff of dreams. My only desire was to bow before our Lord and to worship Him. It seems, perhaps, like some gross idolatry to see a man pressing his forehead onto the floor before Bread. But I worship there nonetheless. Before this Mystery, I must.
     And in this Mystery, this incarnation of Kingdom, in this taste, this mouthful of what is and what will be, Now, I am changed. The bad made good. I pray that it might be so.
     Save us, O Good One.


Chad Toney said...

Well potato chips are invalid matter, so dream-Scott was indeed practicing idolatry. ;0)

paul said...

The idea of Jesus having ridges in some way feels very right to me.

And that you shielded your fragile Lord also seems true to form.

The part that makes me giggle, though, is the special vacuum cleaner.

This dream has much to say, Scott!

onionboy said...

I had a bit of a waking dream at Mass to which you may relate.

O | |

Scott Lyons said...

Indeed, Chad, indeed. Worshipper of potato chips. And, if you recall, Cheetos.

Paul, Laura and I were chuckling about the sanctified vacuum cleaner as well.

Scott Lyons said...

Ah, Owen, those glimpses are great gifts, thank you for sharing it with me.

paul said...

Slap happy, maybe; however, clearly touched by God's hand.

Audrey said...

mmmm. :) A better meal I have rarely read of.