top of page

Latest Thoughts

Recent Blogs

Quotes of the Day for June 9, 2023 – Thoughts on a deeper look at virtues and vices

“Human virtue” should not be an oxymoron. From a Christian perspective, the words should be synonymous. The virtuous life is the only life God ever intended humans to have…“For just as the kingdom of the devil is gained by deceiving people with vices, so the kingdom of God is possessed in purity of heart and spiritual knowledge by practicing the virtues. And where the kingdom of God is, there without a doubt is eternal life, and where the kingdom of the devil is, there—it is not to be doubted—are death and hell. Whoever is there cannot praise the Lord.” (Kevin Scherer, St. John Cassian)

“The modern world is not evil; in some ways the modern world is far too good. It is full of wild and wasted virtues. When a religious scheme is shattered…it is not merely the vices that are let loose. The vices are, indeed, let loose, and they wander and do damage. But the virtues are let loose also; and the virtues wander more wildly, and the virtues do more terrible damage. The modern world is full of the old Christian virtues gone mad. The virtues have gone mad because they have been isolated from each other and are wandering alone.” (G. K. Chesterton)

“… all the virtues are mutually bound to each other. Like a spiritual chain, one is dependent upon the other: prayer to love, love to joy, joy to meekness, meekness to humility, humility to service, service to hope, hope to faith, faith to obedience, obedience to simplicity. And likewise, on the opposite side, the vices are bound one to the other: hatred to anger, anger to pride, pride to vainglory, vainglory to disbelief, disbelief to hardness of heart, hardness of heart to carelessness, carelessness to sloth, sloth to acedia or boredom, boredom to a lack of perseverance, a lack of perseverance to a love of pleasure. And the other parts of vice similarly are interdependent. So also on the good side the virtues are dependent upon each other and are interconnected.” (Pseudo-Macarius)

“You will not be able to perceive the face of virtue so long as you still look on vice with a feeling of pleasure. But vice will appear hateful to you when you hunger for the taste of virtue and avert your gaze from every form of evil…In this world, some things are obviously wicked. But the unrighteousness of other things is not so easily identified. Evil comes wrapped in attractive packages and desirable wrappings. Vices are mixed with virtues, and goodness is mingled with immorality…evil…usually comes mixed with some appeal, even benefit. It takes wisdom to discern that what seems to be attractive is the temptation to evil.” (St. Elijah the Priest, Fr. Basil)

“…we learn the virtues through imitation. More specifically, we learn to be virtuous by imitating exemplars of justice, compassion, kindness, and love. In our culture that prizes “authenticity” and places a premium on novelty and uniqueness, imitation has received a bad rap, as if being an imitator is synonymous with being a fake (think “imitation leather”). But the New Testament holds imitation in a very different light. Indeed, we are exhorted to be imitators…Virtue is a very natural thing. It is acquired slowly, frequently without great intention, through repeated practices and habits. Those who worry about the collapse of civilization have become too lofty in their thoughts. It is the collapse of the parish that matters just now…The origin of the word, “parish,” says a lot. It is derived ultimately from paroikia (“near the house”).” (James Smith, Father Stephen Freeman)

#KevinScherer #StJohnCassian #GKChesterton #PseudoMacarius #StElijahthePriest #FrBasil #FatherStephenFreeman

Quote of the Day


bottom of page