My fellow Byzantine Catholics, what would you say is the view on personality and individuality in the Orthodox tradition? I ask this because I feel I’m at a fork in the road in my walk of faith, I feel I was recently lead by the Spirit to abandon my past subcultural/counter-cultural leanings but I wonder if it’s a good thing for Christians in general to opposed to such things (in my case the Gothic subculture) or if it was just God’s “pastoral” decision for me. Maybe I wasn’t identifying with the correct culture for who I am as an individual? All I know is that the still small voice within me is making feel as though such identifications are imperfections that are dangerous and feed into the passions. I feel like I’m being called to stop listening to rock and heavy music and all, but it’s all I’ve identified with and enjoyed fully. I just get scared that I’m going to have to empty myself so much that I’ll be alien to myself and to others who are in the world. And if what I’m being lead to were truly the best then wouldn’t that basically mean that all Christians should (gulp) conform? I’m confused as to whether it’s proper to give up one’s individuality so much - is it disrespectful to the particular “icon” God has designed us to be? or is it as important as I feel it is? I’ve felt a growing and gnawing conviction and detachment against the Gothic subculture for a while now, and after I followed it I felt like I had just taken a major impediment out of the way of grace. I don’t want to leave any impediments in the way anymore, but on the other hand I don’t want to shipwreck something I may have been made to be. I feel such a pull toward heavy music because to me it’s essentially an icon of transcendence and might. The closest I’ve ever come to such a feeling was through Mozart’s and Verdi’s renditions of the Dies Irae.
Should I be heeding the idea that “the perfect is the enemy of the good” here? I admit, I originally got the idea of ditching my musical tastes from reading some of Seraphim Rose’s shorter writings through Death to the World. I just feel led to be radically Christian and I don’t want to stop short of my potential, and I’ve been becoming more old-fashioned the more time I spend with Byzantine Catholicism. :whacky: