Oh, My Pop Culture Religion: Religious Purity

virgin mary jesus lamb purity

I don’t think there are enough white things in this painting.

Happy Lent to my fellow Christians! Although I’m not entirely sure if “happy” is the appropriate sentiment. Lent is the Christian season of fasting, prayer, and almsgiving (giving money to charity) that comprises the forty days before Easter, not including Sundays. Catholics, Orthodox, and plenty of Protestants participate in this period of spiritual preparation for Christianity’s most important holy day. There’s an element of spiritual purification to the season. But most people today have really strange ideas about purity, and these ideas have infected our popular culture. Snow White follows all of the “rules” for female purity, and still gets punished. On the other hand, the story of King Arthur thoroughly exploits the near-total ambiguity of male purity. 

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