I have read of many Saints wearing what is known as a “hair shirt.” I was wondering if anyone knew where one could be purchased, preferably online. If not, I live in the Atlanta area. Thank you.
Although it is true that saints did impose harsh penances on themselves, it is generally not adviseable for modern individuals to take up such penances without guidance from a trusted, balanced, and orthodox spiritual director. There have been cases of people who read of a particular penance a saint undertook, tried to replicate it, and ended up causing bodily harm to themselves. It is the saintly equivalent of the professional stuntman’s warning, “Kids, don’t try this at home.”
If you feel called to more difficult penances, find a spiritual director whose balance and orthodoxy you trust. He will probably advise you to start with small penances and work your way up to more difficult penances, and will be able to guide you along the way.