-Rev Melissa Fain-
There are seven virtues tied to the seven deadly sins. We love to talk about the sins. There was a whole movie where the villain forced people to die by them. (Seven was probably one of the first rated R movies I was openly allowed to watch.) It led you to morally question the motivations of punishing sin with sin. I won't give away anything if you want to go spend a few bucks and rent it.
But what about those virtues? In the musical Camelot one of the knights of the round table sang about how terrible they are:
Now, perhaps his motivations were a bit off. The knights were bored after Camelot became a place without wrong. What fun is vanquishing sin, if there be no sin to vanquish?
No matter if you are or are not a vanquisher of sin, the virtues are meant to be symbols to a better life. They are meant to temper the soul, to sharpen one’s spiritual being. Which is why we need to spend a few weeks talking through them. The virtues, if properly used, will do just what is said. It will temper and sharpen. If used incorrectly, they can also be used on others as weapons of submission and power. Think of it like a hammer. The hammer was created to be a tool. It was meant to assist us in every day projects. Someone could take that tool and kill someone with it. It doesn’t change the purpose of the tool, it simply means we need to understand tools can be dangerous too.
Over the coming weeks I'm going to look at virtues being used as weapons.
The most important part of these virtues being misused and manipulated, is when they become unhinged from their counter sin, or when the inability to live up to the virtue is seen as the sin instead of the obvious inability. Then there are those that maintain power with virtue as a chain of oppression.
I'm looking forward to these weeks. I hope you are too. Think of it as an early Halloween present.