Choose a topic from Part 2B:

94. Idolatry

1. Idolatry is that form of superstition which sets up falsegods, and pays divine honor to what is not divine. St. Augustine(De Doct. Christ, ii) says: "Anything invented by manfor making and worshiping idols, or for giving divine worship to acreature, or any part of a creature ... is superstitious." Thesuperstition here indicated is that of idolatry.

2. It is certainly a sin to worship idols, outwardly orinwardly. It is right to give honor to superiors, but not to regardthem as gods. Idolatry is utterly inordinate; it is flatly contraryto reason; it conflicts with religion; it is a thing evil initself. Hence, idolatry is never to be tolerated. We mustreject the error of those heretics who say that, in times ofpersecution, it suffices to hold the true religion in the heart,and, for the sake of freedom from trouble, to take part in theoutward worship of idols.

3. It is a sin, and in itself the gravest kind of sin, topractice idolatry. For it is directly against God, like hatred ofGod which we have called the worst sin in its kind. Idolatry wouldupset the order of the universe by ascribing universal control andabsolute power to a creature. Some sins may be worse than idolatryby reason of the contempt for God and his law that exists in thesinner's heart; but no sin is worse in itself.

4. Men cause idolatry by their excessive affections,inordinate loyalties, too high an esteem for artistic objects, andalso by ignorance. Scripture says (Wisd. 14:14): "By thevanity of men, they [idols] came into the world." A furthercause of idolatry is found in the solicitation of demons who offerthemselves to be adored.

"The supreme perfection of man in this life is to be so united to God that all his soul with all its faculties and powers are so gathered into the Lord God that he becomes one spirit with him, and remembers nothing except God, is aware of and recognises nothing but God, but with all his desires unified by the joy of love, he rests contentedly in the enjoyment of his Maker alone."
St Albert the Great

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"Let no one wear a mask, otherwise he will do ill; and if he has one, let him burn it."
St Philip Neri

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"If, devout soul, it is your will to please God and live a life of serenity in this world, unite yourself always and in all things to the divine will. Reflect that all the sins of your past wicked life happened because you wandered from the path of God's will. For the future, embrace God's good pleasure and say to him in every happening: "Yea, Father, for so it hath seemed good in thy sight." "
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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