Choose a topic from Part 2A:

84. One Sin as the Cause of Another

1. Covetousness, not as a general inordinateness of desire or asa general tendency to such inordinateness, but as a specialsin, is the root of all actual sins. This special covetousnessis the inordinate desire for riches. Riches (that is, money) open aready avenue to all excesses and sins, and are longed for bysinners. Not money itself, but the loveof money, the desirefor it, is the root of all evil, as St. Paul says (I Tim.6:10).

2. Pride as an inordinate desire to excel (not the pridewhich is an actual contempt of God or an inclination to thiscontempt), is back of the primal covetousness. Pride is thereforethe beginning of all sins. Man wants goods or riches to have someperfection by possessing them, or some excellence, or someoutstanding quality, or some notable enjoyment. Thus, whilecovetousness is the root of evil, pride is the beginning ofsins.

3. Therefore covetousness and pride are fundamental orcapital sins. These sins are like generals in an evilarmy; all the action of the evil warfare stems from them. And thereare also colonels and majors in the evil army; these too are listedwith the capital sins.

4. There are five sins in addition to pride andcovetousness that are rightly reckoned as capital sins. Hence, thecount of capital sins is seven: pride, covetousness, lust, anger,gluttony, envy, sloth.

"A single act of uniformity with the divine will suffices to make a saint."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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"God has no need of men."
St Philip Neri

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"For what would it profit us to know the whole Bible by heart and the principles of all the philosophers if we live without grace and the love of God?"
Thomas á Kempis

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