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Opening Arguments

Crock of sin

As a strong believer in individual rights and responsibilities, I've watched with dismay as collectivism of one sort or another has made inroad after inroad. Now, even sin is no longer a personal matter:

He said that priests must take account of “new sins which have appeared on the horizon of humanity as a corollary of the unstoppable process of globalisation”. Whereas sin in the past was thought of as being an invididual matter, it now had “social resonance”.

“You offend God not only by stealing, blaspheming or coveting your neighbour's wife, but also by ruining the environment, carrying out morally debatable scientific experiments, or allowing genetic manipulations which alter DNA or compromise embryos,” he said.

This, for what it's worth coming from a non-Catholic, is a crock. Sin with "social resonance"? The globilization of offending God? For 1,500 years, the church has felt seven deadly sins -- lust, gluttony, avarice, sloth, anger, envy and pride -- sufficient. Now, with Catholics losing interest in going to confession, it is apparently thought that seven new deadly sins will spice things up. We are warned not to stand before God having indulged in genetic experimentation, tampered with the order of nature, polluted the Earth, brought about social injustice that caused poverty, accumulated excessive wealth or taken or pushed drugs.

Guess I'm going to have to brush up. I've been pretty good at breaking the original seven, but some more than others. Gluttony, lust and sloth have been high on my list, pride and envy on the bottom, anger and avarice somewhere in the middle. I also have mixed results with the seven  holy virtues. I think I've done pretty good with patience, kindness and and humility, but I could use a little work on chastity, abstinence and temperance. The jury is still out of diligence. (Have you noticed, by the way, what s a fine line there is between patience and sloth?)

I think we need some clarification. Does the Vatican differentiate between legal and illegal drugs? Am I committing a deadly sin by continuting to drive instead of using a bicycle? I've never been involved in genetic experimentation, but I think cloning has some real potential -- where does that put me?


Tue, 03/11/2008 - 9:35am

"..., for what it