Sometimes I ask myself why I just don't write about boring stuff like photosynthesis? That way I wouldn't have to think so hard. But alas, I obviously enjoy a little self-inflicted torture for your enjoyment, so let's see what I can spit out here. *taking a deep breath*
So those of you that engage in a little online chatter (OK, I admit, I'm only referencing Twitter. I don't really care about those other sites), there is a culture or code of behaviour of quite readily revealing and even celebrating your vice of choice publicly. For some it's that peculiar green leafy substance that has it's own day of celebration (4/20) *cough* *cough* *wheeze* *choke*, for others it's a less festive but albeit similar in practice "The Cigarette", and for others (could quite possibly be referring to myself) it's a liquid variety that is usually best served on the rocks. God Bless Henney. But, what about the more serious vices that people indulge in? Yes, we're talking about the Cardinal Vices, the most objectionable of vices, The Seven Deadly Sins.
Also known as "avarice" is basically a sin of excess. Wanting it all, or moreover wanting what's not yours. To put this into perspective, I was thinking about monopolies this morning. In the context of people or maybe companies that want to have such a tight grip on the market that others may not have a chance of penetrating the (open) market because a person or company is exploiting his/her control over the consumers and/or service providers. Here's an example: Could you imagine if there was only one chain of burger joints in the whole world? You may certainly enjoy their burgers but with no point of reference because you have never tasted another burger. So when one day another burger joint finally opens, the public in their desperation for alternatives to the mainstay burger joint (who sells good burgers by the way), go flooding to the new burger joint. It's like a breath of fresh air. Eventually it will normalize, and both burger joints can enjoy a healthy return due to the elimination of the monopoly, BUT the veteran won't wait. They are a GREEDY bunch. So, they threaten to put the cattle farmers out of business if they sell beef to the other burger joint! Are you kidding me? What the hell do the cattle farmers have to do with it? They just want to sell beef, they don't care to whom.
If you have ever wanted something all to yourself, and were not willing to share, and went to great lengths to make sure no one would ever eat beef unless you served it.....then you are a GUILTY AS CHARGED of the 1st Deadly Sin.
Also in connection with "acedia" which is to neglect to do what one ought to do. Where "sloth" describes more of an unreasonable laziness or apathy. God gives us all talents in order that we have a set of built in skills by which to make a living at so we can take care ourselves or our families. Example: There are many people out there who allow adversity or bad luck to stifle their progression, and do not find the courage within themselves to persevere. So they rely on the encouragement (read as: faciliation) of others to make things happen. In "Who Do You Ride" I spoke a little about bandwagoners who were happy to ride along the coat tails of the person who dared to use their talent to the fullest. This sin is more about the absence of action rather than an act itself. "Sloths" usually have no type of noteriety as they are still thinking about what they want to do, instead of doing it.
Let's put it like this, if you are pushing 40, and have never had a career/don't have a post-secondary education/don't have a family to take care of/and have nothing to show for the last 40 years, you are probably GUILTY AS CHARGED of the 2nd Deadly Sin.
Similar to greed, but greed is more material or financially driven, envy is more broad. It simply means wanting something that someone else has, to the extent of wishing they it were taken away and given to you. I speak on this a lot in my writing, because sadly, it is one of the ugliest of the Deadly Sins. Why want what someone else has? What they have might not be good for you once you have it. Yeah sure, your neighbour's new sports car looks amazing in the driveway, but the maintenance fees and insurance premiums are probably not as sexy. The worst thing to do is ever begrudge people what they have out of envy. Guaranteed, "karma" will kick in and then you'll never have the object of your
sick and twisted desires. In The Divine Comedy, Part 2 known as Dante's Purgatory, is where the punishment of having one's eyes sewn shut with wire for sinfully enjoying the fall of others is introduced.
So to simplify: Doh look in anyone else's backayard. Take care of your own garden! If you have hated on somebody because you don't like what they got, you are GUILTY AS CHARGED for the 3rd Deadly Sin.
This is considered the "original sin". When Lucifer started to challenge God because he thought he was all ah dat.....he lost his place in heaven and eventually became Satan. So what's wrong with a little pride? NOTHING. Self-love is important. You need to be able to motivate yourself and find strength within yourself, as relying on others could lead to disappointment. BUT tooting your horn without tooting the horns of others (especially if they deserve it) is a huge sin. It could be as simple as not re-tweeting a very funny tweet to share it with your followers, to as blatant as not congratulating someone when they win an award. Do you know why testimonials are used in advertising? Because it is far more believable when somebody else gives you props then when you give them to yourself. I like Tide detergent NOT because Tide said they were the greatest, but because of the millions of Tide users who shared their stories of memorable stain removal. *laughing at myself for the analogy*.
If you have ever only spoken highly of yourself, and have not given credit to, endorsed, or co-signed somebody else that deserved it, you are GUILTY AS CHARGED of the 4th Deadly Sin.
This is over-indulgence so severe it leads to wastefulness. Originally meant to describe food, but now can easily refer to anything. The theme of gluttony is so perfectly depicted in my all-time favourite movie Scarface, where Pacino's love of the "American Dream" was so great that once he achieved it, he was careless and wasteful at the height of his ascent. Less glamourous however is when you've gone to Mandarin (or insert name of favourite buffet style restaurant here) and you know you are full after Plate 3, but shoot, you want to get your $21.99 worth so badly that you force yourself to have just a few more morcels of that slow roasted prime rib and squeeze desert in as well. Good in theory, but when you've heaped your plate one last time and can only eat a mere mouthful, AND the button pops off your pants before you've reached home anyway, let's just say you are GUILTY AS CHARGED of the 5th Deadly Sin.
This is best described as excessive sexual desires. I'm not going to dissect this one too deeply as it is fairly self explanatory. If you've watched porn, you are GUILTY AS CHARGED of the 6th Deadly Sin. (Who's coming to hell with me?)
This is best described as excessive anger or rage. Remember that time your flight was late, and thus you missed your connection and you screamed at the woman at the ticket desk....uh, yeah...that's wrath. How about that time you were stuck in bumper to fender *cue Machel song* traffic and flipped the bird at someone who honestly had no more control of the circumstances than you did. Wrath can rear it's ugly head in the form of impatience or revenge, usually fueled by an unreasonable desire to be "right". When I was 17, my dad used to let me drive his truck to school which wasn't even super far from the house. One day, an officer came knocking on the door trying to connect me to a joyriding incident near the school that resulted in a tree in someone's lawn getting uprooted. My parents didn't even give me the benefit of the doubt, and I was the victim of their rage *sigh* without any opportunity to speak on my own behalf. 3 weeks later when the police came back to inform us that another vehicle had been linked to the incident due to witness testimony, they NEVER apologized to me for their *ahem* wrath. Being justified for "punishing" me was more important to them than my absolution.
If you have ever flown off the handle when you probably shouldn't have, you are GUILTY AS CHARGED of the 7th Deadly Sin.