“The white cat and the monk”
So… What’s the deal?
A guy who is married, and a cat… that isn’t exactly white.
The word monk comes from the Greek word monachos - single, solitary.
So, how can a married guy call himself a monk? And what’s the cat got to do with anything?
To be frank, I don’t know precisely how it works. I don’t understand it myself. I only know that I have always been aware of being one (a monk). The only way I can think of myself as a monk, though, is as a not very good monk. 😇
The White Cat and the Monk
To me, the most important aspect of my being a monk is the timeframe, or actually lack thereof. As I see it, being a monk means living for eternity - not only for this world, or this time. Of course, I am IN this world and in this time, so I do live here, but my focus and my aim is on eternity. In that sense, the meanings single / solitary might be understood as not necessarily living alone, but living single-mindedly, with a single purpose. To be clear, I do NOT believe that it doesn't matter what we do in this time and world. This time and world is shaping eternity. What is based on Love will last. All else will die and disappear.
I believe marriage could indeed be an obstacle to living as a monk. However, I happen to be married to a nun, so somehow it works. When a monk is married to a nun, celibacy is not necessary. 😘
Before we met, my wife-to-be and I had both on our own taken the first steps toward a monastic life (living as a nun / monk). Then our paths crossed and we were brought together. Our whole relationship is founded on this: we sacrificed marriage for monastic life, and then monastic life came to us in the form of marriage.
"No man or cat is an island - it's all about relationship"
- And the cat?
A while back, I read a book based on a poem by a medieval monk who is visited by a white cat, and they become friends. I had also recently been visited by a cat (silvery white, although spotted) and we had also become friends. His name is Moses. I realized the book was about us.
I believe that animals are part of the great plan unfolding into eternity, and I wish to explore the relationship with Moses to see how it may develop, and to learn all the lessons it may give me.
I believe that mine and Moses' paths crossed for this purpose. I believe that there lies a hidden treasure in relationships with animals, that often is overlooked due to our human arrogance, pride and existential lostness. The loss of relationship is the reason for why our planet is dying.