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2. The Object of Contrition

1. Contrition is sorrow for sin. It is not grief by reasonof punishment due to sin, but grief for the sinitself which deserves punishment.

2. Contrition is sorrow in the will for what the will hasdone amiss. Hence, contrition does not include in its scope theoriginal sin which the sinner has not committed by bad use of will,but has inherited by infected nature.

3. Contrition is a word which means a crushing ofwhat is hard and evil out of the will. Every actual sin is a kindof hardness in the will, and this must be crushed out. Hence, wehave need of contrition for every actual sin.

4. Contrition as a part of the virtue of penancelooks to the past. A person must have contrition for the sins hehas already committed, for it is these that have caused thehardness in his will which contrition crushes out. Contrition assuch does not refer to future sins, yet it disposes a person towatchfulness against them. Contrition belongs to the virtue ofpenance; caution with regard to future sins belongs to the virtueof prudence as conjoined with penance.

5. We cannot have contrition for the sins of others, butonly for our own sins. We should, indeed, grieve for the sins ofothers, but this grief is not contrition.

6. A person must have contrition for each mortal sin hehas committed; he must confess each one and therefore he must havecontrition for each one.

"A man should keep himself down, and not busy himself in mirabilibus super se."
St Philip Neri

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"The name of Jesus, pronounced with reverence and affection, has a kind of power to soften the heart. "
St Philip Neri

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"What good does it do to speak learnedly about the Trinity if, lacking humility, you displease the Trinity? Indeed it is not learning that makes a man holy and just, but a virtuous life makes him pleasing to God. "
Thomas á Kempis

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