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.

"Many words do not satisfy the soul; but a good life eases the mind and a clean conscience inspires great trust in God."
Thomas á Kempis

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"Shun too great a desire for knowledge, for in it there is much fretting and delusion. Intellectuals like to appear learned and to be called wise. Yet there are many things the knowledge of which does little or no good to the soul, and he who concerns himself about other things than those which lead to salvation is very unwise. "
Thomas á Kempis

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"Obedience is a short cut to perfection."
St Philip Neri

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