HEAVENLY VIRTUE AND
Our interior condition and attitude control the direction in which we conduct our lives, toward salvation or condemnation. If we look at contemporary man, we fail to see what man is destined to be. Only in the lives of saints, holy men and women can we see what our proper destination.
What controls our lives, even though we claim to be free, are the sins and passions which hold us prisoner. All vices are like shackles from which it is difficult to be set free. Our Lord speaks of this when He says: “If the Son of man set you free then you will truly be free.” Also “Truly I say to you, whoever commits sin is the slave of sin.” Virtues are a certification of proper freedom, while vices are like spiritual handcuffs, from which only Christ can set us free. The western world glories in freedom, but freedom of the body is not freedom, when the soul is imprisoned by sin and iniquities.
When Christ began preaching to His disciples, as we read in Matthew 5:1. He opened His divine mouth and said: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they shall be filled." Being poor in spirit is the realization that I don’t know, that I must learn, and that I am ignorant of most things and know little. The realization of our poverty incites us to seek and seek first the kingdom of God.
Poverty of spirit arouses in the soul, a desire to seek and learn, and ask why am I here? What is my end and purpose. This spawns in the soul the very first virtue called humility, humbleness, modesty, poorness of spirt. Opposing these virtues are the poisonous vices of arrogance, haughtiness, pride, boastfulness, pompousness, conceit, and insanity. Humility opens doors and leads the soul to Jesus Christ, through the Holy Spirit. All the teachings of Jesus are beneficial to mankind for as God, He knows exactly what we lack and our needs for perfection. In the words of the Devine Logos Christ, there is nothing lacking and nothing superfluous for it is perfect and all that is needed.
Concerning pride, its father is the Devil and its end is ignorance, foolishness and insanity. Why insanity? The Logos or Word of God who became incarnate for us, according to St. John the Theologian, is “the true light that lightens every man who comes into the world.” Through this light bestowed upon men we receive the ability to use right reason and avoid folly.
But previously, when heaven was organized under regiments of angels, the Devil, in his arrogance rebelled against God. When he was the Archangel Lucifer, He had been under the guidance and authority of the Logos, but in his foolishness, he deliberately abandoned anbd rebelled against the Logos and thus became insane, unable to reason rightly in accordance with the Logos and right reason. He knows well that he will be punished for all eternity yet, continues to work against the Almighty Master and God, demonstrating his total insanity!
Are we sane or insane? If we believe in Jesus Christ, in life after death, in the last judgment and separation of the sheep from the goats, then we are sane. But if we believe that Christ is not God, nor the Judge of all, that there is no gehenna and eternal suffering, no life after death, than sadly we are insane.
Pride is the deadly poison that lurks in the hearts of men and prevents them from reasoning according to right reason. Pride causes the man to deny that there is a God and Creator. Pride prefers to believe in mindless matter as being the constructor of the universe, intelligence coming from non-intelligence light coming from darkness, Effects having related causes they exchange for the big band. Pride fails to consider, why we need air and have it, eat plentiful food and drink abundant water. Pride sees a reason for everything except truth. Pride causes nations to rise against nations and wars to spread everywhere. Pride and haughtiness oppose truth and reason, vaunting itself as the source of knowledge. We call those obsessed with vice vicious, while those who love virtue are called virtuous.
Humility is gentle and caring, the most beautiful among the virtues as described by the only humble One saying: “Come uno me all you that labor and are heavily laden and you will find rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me, for I am meek and humble in my heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”