Not the wet kind.
I'm talking this kind:
pre·cip·i·ta·tion (pr-sp-tshn)I think it has been my predominant fault in life. Or maybe not. In retrospect, making a quick getaway was at times a lifesaver. Or maybe not. My precipitousness led me to make not a few rash decisions throughout my life. In fact, this post is somehow rather precipitous, not unlike most posts I do - but I'll try and make this one short and not reveal too much.n.1. A headlong fall or rush.2. Abrupt or impulsive haste.3. A hastening or acceleration, especially one that is sudden or unexpected: He is responsible for the precipitation of his own demise.
People act precipitously when they act impulsively and without sufficient reflection. Like when they wake up one morning and say to themselves, 'I'm quitting my job!' And they have no other job to go to. Or, 'I'm leaving my vocation to do something else!' And although they may have a plan, they do not have the means or wherewith all to accomplish it. Or worse, they keep reinventing the same plan over and over, taking in people along the way. 'I'm going to start a new company in this town!' After getting the backers, the first town turns out to be not the right town, so they up and leave and go to the next. But I'm getting away from my original intention here. The do-what-you-love-and-the-money-will-come gyrovagues sort of promote this type of thinking - or lack of it.
Taking risks. Of course it's not necessarily a bad thing, but people need to be smart about it - they need to look at their track record and be more calculating in their risk taking. They need to avoid rash haste - they need a plan. Otherwise, you might increase your sorrows and increase the likelihood of more precipitation, in the form of tears. I've learned this the hard way. Precipitous people are very difficult to direct.
As to the spiritual fault of precipitation, or how it relates to the interior life, Garrigou-Lagrange has a section on that as well:
Properly speaking, what is precipitation? St. Thomas (11) defines it as a manner of acting by impulsion of the will or of the passion, without prudence, precaution, or sufficient consideration. It is a sin directly opposed to prudence and the gift of counsel. It leads to temerity in judgment and is comparable to the haste of one who descends a staircase too rapidly and falls, instead of walking composedly.
What are the causes of precipitation? As spiritual writers say, this defect comes from the fact that we substitute our own natural activity for the divine action. We act with feverish ardor, without sufficient reflection, without prayer for the light of the Holy Ghost, without the advice of our spiritual director. At times this natural haste is the cause of extremely imprudent acts that are very harmful in their results.
Natural haste often arises from the fact that we consider only the proximate end to be attained today, without seeing its relation to the supreme end toward which we must direct our steps. Seeing only this immediate human end, we direct our efforts toward it by natural. activity, without sufficient recourse to the help of God.
We can see in the training that Christ gave His apostles how often He warned them against this precipitation or natural haste, which causes a man to act without sufficient reflection and without a sufficiently great spirit of faith. - Read more.
Art: Detail: Van Der Weyden, Descent from the Cross