Universalis, your very own breviary in pixels...

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Sin, or at least "Sin"

I just finished taking a survey on USCatholic about "sin."
I think, IIRC, that I was following a link and thought I would be reading about the Sacrament of Confession, but it was really more about, well... about whether sin is sin, you know? I mean, as long as you're a nice person...., and let's vote on what YOU think should be a sin !
And I took a while, (Sloth,) but after I gave them my valuable opinion (Pride,) while secretly stewing that other bloggers are more listened to than I, (Envy,) I brushed from my keyboard the crumbs from the remarkable Skillet Almond Shortbread my sister had baked and on which I had gorged myself, (Gluttony,) and checked in on Eye of the Tiber.
Okay, funny, funny, love E of the T's satire,
A group of 26 Italian mistresses who claim to be having affairs with Catholic men have written a joint letter to Pope Francis begging him to end the Catholic Church’s ban on infidelity.
The women, who met through a Facebook campaign, wrote to the Pope requesting a meeting to put forward their case, claiming they were just “a small sample” of the many home wreckers “living in silence.”
“We love these men, they love us, and in most cases, despite all efforts to renounce it, one cannot manage to give up such a solid and beautiful bond,” they wrote....

but it seems it is barely a stretch from the actual news story:
A group of 26 Italian women - all claiming to be in affairs with priests - have written to Pope Francis pleading with him to end the Catholic Church's celibacy vow.
The women said that there were many more like them who were "living in silence."
"We love these men, they love us, and in most cases, despite all efforts to renounce it, one cannot manage to give up such a solid and beautiful bond," they wrote in a joint letter.
They added that "very little is known about the devastating suffering of a woman who is deeply in love with a priest".
Actually, a great deal is known about the suffering of those who persist in sin.
And we have all experienced it, in one way or another.
We have all sinned, and most of us, at least for a time, have tried to pretend that sin was not sin, and supported others in sin, and sometimes even tried to actively encourage others in sin in the imposture that this was a kind of "love."

I don't know if it is more painful to live in the shame of secret sin, pretending that our pain is only due to the cruelty of others' judgment forcing us into secrecy and not to the natural consequences of sin, or if it is more painful keeping up the masquerade of the "out" sinner's supposed satisfaction with his sinful ways.

One of my brothers when he was small used to through these baroque tantrums about what he wanted to do and couldn't do "because you won't let me!" before he had even tried, even asked and been denied whatever it was.

In other words, he already knew he was wrong.

It often seems to me that people who clearly are unrestrained by anyone or anything outside themselves want to depict their sinful ways as some kind of brave struggle against puritanical oppression, when in fact those who disapprove are more obscure, less powerful, and certainly with much less access to and sway over the machines of celebrity and public opinion.

Those machines will tell you -- the only "sin" is having the temerity to call an actual sin by its name.

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