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Showing posts with the label Temptation

Wear your crown of thorns

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" Even if we have thousands of acts of great virtue to our credit, our confidence in being heard must be based on God's mercy and His love for men. Even if we stand at the summit of virtue, it is by mercy that we shall be saved. " - Saint John Chrysostom

For a very long time, despite reading and hearing wisdom to the contrary, in the depth of my being, i equated holiness with the lack of discomfort. You know that state with the absence of those disconcerting moments when you know deep down you have done wrong/are doing wrong yet continue to banish the thought. When you don't want to deal with, nay even acknowledge,  your own weakness. When you think having being a renewed Christian means having only pure and holy thoughts. From experience i tell you, thats a load of bladderdash. No one can ever hope to become saint overnight. It truly is a long winding journey acknowledging and being fully aware of the grossness of one's sinful soul. All through the Christian jo…

Yeats, Cthulhu, and Synod 14

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Some mainstream news isn't "journalistic infotainment-like art-product," as Hyraxx, the alien reporter in Buck Godot, described her work.

That said, there's a reason for my concentrating on News.va, the Vatican's official news source, for Synod 14 coverage....

...Emotions are part of being human. We're supposed to feel happy, sad, or whatever. But God gave us brains: and expects us to think, too.

I have no problem with emotions: which is a good thing, since I'm a very emotional man. I've enjoyed shows like Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and Revenge of the Cybermen, but that's entertainment....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

Fleeing temptations from the world

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Over the past few weeks, we’ve been considering the sources of temptations and how to overcome them. We complete the series today by pondering how to flee temptations coming to us from the world.

As we saw earlier, when we speak of “the world” in the context of temptations, we don’t mean the created world. Everything God created is good if used correctly. The problem is, when we lost our proper relationship with God in Adam’s sin, we also lost our proper relationship with one another and with creation.

“The world” is the society that delights in pleasure more than it delights in God.  The world entices us to join in the “fun.”

The world values pleasure, power, violence, wealth, fame, and comfort. It does not stop at tempting us. When we resist, it mocks and persecutes us. The world cannot stand to be rejected, having the fury of the proverbial scorned woman.

The world exalts the lowest things to the highest stature.  Its motto is “sex, drugs, and rock and roll.” It uses…

Battling the temptations of the flesh

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We’ve been delving into temptations coming from the world, the flesh, and the Devil. Last week we discussed demonic temptations in detail. Today, we’ll examine temptations of the flesh and how to combat them.

We saw that people with melancholic or choleric temperaments tend to be more prone to the temptations that come directly from the Devil: pride, envy, and anger. Temptations of the flesh particularly plague the other two temperaments. More specifically, sanguines often struggle with gluttony and sins against chastity. Phlegmatics  struggle with sloth. (I will be writing more about the four classic temperaments throughout this year. I am creating a spiritual growth plan for you to use with your children of each temperament.)

As I have said before, the flesh can be the most relentless of the three sources of temptation. While the Devil may leave us alone for a time, and we can shut out the world to a certain extent, we can never get away from our own flesh. It remains…

How to overcome the Devil’s temptation

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Last week I wrote about the three sources of temptation. Now let’s look at temptation by the Devil in more detail.

Two Scripture passages show us how the Devil tempts us. Genesis 3 tells how Adam and Eve gave in to temptation and sinned. Matthew 4 tells how Jesus resisted the Devil’s temptation. The two stories contain striking similarities.
  The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life When the Devil tempted Eve, the first thing she noticed was that the forbidden fruit was “good for food” (Gen 3:6).  Similarly, the Devil first tempted Jesus by telling Him to turn stones into bread (Mt 4:3). So we see that the Devil often begins by appealing to our natural appetites. In fact, he tempts us with the desires of the flesh.

Apparently, Eve was not completely swayed by this temptation, for she also noticed that the fruit was “a delight to the eyes.” Catholic tradition equates this delight with greed–the desire to have something that is not rightly ours, …

The world, the flesh, and the Devil–sources of temptation

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Why are we tempted to sin? How can we know when a thought is simply a temptation and when we actually consent to sin? How should we avoid and resist temptation? I’d like to explore these questions over several blog posts, starting with the sources of temptation. Traditionally, the three sources are called the world, the flesh, and the Devil.
The Devil is real and active All temptation began with the Devil. Before God created the material world, He created the spiritual world, including angels and archangels. God gave angels and archangels a chance to choose to obey or disobey Him. Lucifer led a third of the angels and archangels to rebel against God. Lucifer was transformed into the Devil (Satan). His followers became demons.

After God made man, the Devil tempted Adam and Eve. Hating God, he also hated creatures made in God’s image. Although he cannot experience real joy, he takes a perverse pleasure in seeing man turn away from God.

Jordan Aumann, O.P., in his modern cl…

Our greatest spiritual battle is against ourselves

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Sometimes life is a war zone. So many things disturb our peace. The kids act defiantly. An important contract falls through at work. Our finances are in trouble. The phone rings during a serious conversation. These are all surface battles. The real war we fight is the war against ourselves.

God created man in love and goodness. Adam and Eve sinned. Evil entered their hearts. Where once it had been easy to do God’s will, it became a struggle. They passed this struggle down to us, their children.
I want to do good, but I don’t St. Paul wrote, “I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate… So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin which dwells in my members” (Romans 7:15, 21-22). Haven’t we all experienced this?

We start the day…