Christ, Charms, and Coronavirus
Since the pandemic started, people have been looking for answers to their demise. And it is not surprising that this trying tile brought people closer to their spirituality, as it is the next logical thing to do when everything that is happening does not make any sense.
But even though there are many attempts these days to disprove the use of religious symbols and pray to God directly, many are now cleaning their dusted rosary and started lighting candles to their homemade altars in response to their desire to be in God’s good side during these trying times. Why is it like this and how can we marry the two ideas of religiosity through symbols and icons but still keeping our sights directly to Him?
Since the 20th century some scholars have stressed the symbolical character of religion over attempts to present religion rationally. The symbolic aspect of religion is even considered by some scholars of psychology and mythology to be the main characteristic of religious expression. Scholars of comparative religions, ethnologists, and psychologists have gathered and interpreted a great abundance of material on the symbolical aspects of religion, especially in relation to Eastern and local religions. In recent Christian theology and liturgical practices another revaluation of religious symbolic elements has occurred.
The importance of symbolic expression and of the pictorial presentation of religious facts and ideas has been confirmed, widened, and deepened both by the study of local cultures and religions and by the comparative study of world religions. Systems of symbols and pictures that are constituted in a certain ordered and determined relationship to the form, content, and intention of presentation are believed to be among the most important means of knowing and expressing religious facts. Such systems also contribute to the maintenance and strengthening of the relationships between human beings and the realm of the sacred or holy (the transcendent, spiritual dimension). The symbol is, in effect, the mediator, presence, and real (or intelligible) representation of the holy in certain conventional and standardized forms.
As an example, Catholics use different symbolic objects to help them pray. A cross or crucifix reminds them of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and his resurrection. Some will light a candle to create the right atmosphere to feel the presence of God.
Catholics may use a rosary as they meditate on the life of Jesus and call on Mary to offer their prayers to God. The rosary can help someone remain focused in prayer as there is always a danger that their mind can wander.
Churches often have statues of Mary and some saints. Catholics do not worship Mary or the saints, but ask them to pray to God on their behalf. This is known as intercession.
Statues can also help to focus a person’s mind on an aspect of prayer or worship. For example, a statue of Jesus on the cross can help us remember the sacrifice of Jesus. Statues act as a visual aid for the worshipper.
So what we should keep in mind is this. Regardless of whether you use the rosary and light candles and decorate your house with religious symbols, a true faith that is lived and honored by the Lord comes from within. And those symbols and icons? They are just an aid to prayer by providing an object that a person can use to help focus their mind on God, or Jesus, or the Virgin or the saint that the person is praying to.
To put you in a better spiritual presence, you need a prayer aid that is both beautiful and honors the Lord. Accessori Sancti provides a selection of rosaries, bracelets, and religious symbols that will surely put you in a state of prayer and reflection while communicating to the Lord. Check our collection right here.