This content is condensed from a series of podcasts released by “Catholic Stuff You should Know.” It was a really great set of podcasts that I believed deserved a repackaging into a single space. If you enjoy this podcast, I really suggest you go check out the originals as well!
Most people struggle with a shortcoming in one of the three theological virtues. It has some interesting effects on your life. In this episode, I discuss each virtue, the vice that comes from a shortcoming, and practical steps to help you overcome that vice. As always, the first step is simply to become aware of what challenges you face, and bring them in prayer to the Lord.
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Episode 27: Which of the 3 Theological Virtues are you weakest in?
Background, gift from God, we can ask for more
- Many shallow name-only Catholics/Christians lack faith
- You cannot beat it into them.
- Faith vs Believe vs assent. Faith is belief in the reality of God that is inaccessable to human knowlege.
- Faith is dialogical – witness/relationship. Gain through witness of others, through relationships. E.g. tillotsons.
- Can’t just be about the intellect/grindstone of the world, there is more to life
- Faith opens up the deeper levels of the world.
- Deeper attentiveness and receptivity to reality (to God, to attentions of truth, beauty, etc.)
- Moves to act of obediance – we obey God’s laws because we have faith. Otherwise, Why?
- Look for where you struggle with obedience, and pray for faith there.
- Faith vs Hope. Worldly hope: see something you want, see the obstacle/challenge, hope is confidence you can get over the obsticle. Intrinsically the thing we hope for is unattainable.
- On natural level (passion), hope is not a virtue. Only becomes a virtue on the theological level – as hope relates to God. Even though you cannot see God, you desire to attain Him.
- Passion of hope is when you see your army coming to support you in the battle. Despair comes if you don’t see the army
- All theological virtues are comingly of intellect and will. Theogical hope is what you have if your army doesn’t come. It’s all about Christ making what was impossible, now possible. We cannot see it.
- Hope is “knowing without seeing” – the “not yet”
- Person short of hope Needs to see it all, thinks they can/should be able to see/control everything.
- Man is a pilgrim. Hope is proper to the pilgrim. You don’t yet see the whole path. We lose hope when we collapse “life as a pilgrimmage” into a list of things to do.
- To gain hope, you need two natural foundations: Humility and Magnanimity. Knowing self and driving to do it anyways.
- Anticipation destroys the pilgrim character of existence. Despair is anticipation of non-fulfilmment. Presumption is anticipation of fulfillment. Anticipation itself destroys hope.
- Accedia – I don’t know if I want this, spiritual or mental sloth, work-a-holic. Because of sadness/despair
- I think that I am in control of my life
- Arrogence – A-rogare – not-ask God what the path is.
- Pride is cold , deadened heart, empty. Enables us to injure others, grow cold to other people and their feelings and needs.
- Looks to self. Superbia/cupidity. Balance of pride in every sin
- If you cannot love yourself, you cannot love others.
- Most people are not living a reflective life – not thinking about questions like “who am I?” and “What is my dignity?”
- Everyone has a choice between pride and humility, between will to power or poverty of spirit.
- Love – half dozen words in latin, 4 words in greek. Highest love is Caritas/Agape. Caritas is friendship love of God given to man (charity)
- Love anything and your heart will be wronged and broken. If you want to keep it intact, give your heart to no one and nothing (C. S. Lewis)
- Without that risk of love, one ends up cold. Take the risk of love! Real intimacy, real vulnerability.
- From love proceeds both joy and sorrow. A true lover can experience both joy and sorrow with the beloved. Not a fantasy world.