Total abstinence is easier than perfect moderation — St. Augustine
I love this quote because it is so vey true.
The Lenten season brings this wisdom home for me every year. One oatmeal raisin cookie will send me off on a bender, where if I can totally abstain I might just make it forty days. (Notice I say might.)
But I don’t think Augustine had cookies in mind when he came forth with this wisdom.
More than likely he was talking about desires in the more commonly understood sense.
A classic Buddhist saying reminds us that in the same way that rain comes into a house with a bad roof, desire breaks into our heart and mind when we have not been practicing meditation.
Lent is time to repair the leaks in our heart and mind through a steady diet of fasting, prayer, meditation, and service.
It is a time where we develop the skills to live a life of perfect moderation.