Monday, June 06, 2011

The Pride

To know the true nature of pride, we should first note that it is a spiritual sin, in itself less shameful and less debasing, but more grievous, says St. Thomas,(1) than the sins of the flesh, because it turns us more away from God. The sins of the flesh could not be in the demon who was irremediably lost through pride. Scripture on several occasions says that "pride is the beginning of all sin," (2) because it does away with the humble submission and obedience of the creature to God. The first sin of the first man was a sin of pride,(3) the desire of the knowledge of good and evil,(4) that he might be his own guide and not have to obey. In the opinion of St. Thomas,(5) pride is more than a capital sin; it is the source of the capital sins, and particularly of vainglory, which is one of its first effects.

Some are deceived, at least practically, about the true nature of pride, and as a result, without wishing to do so, may commend false humility, which is a form of hidden pride more dangerous than that which displays itself and makes itself ridiculous. - Garrigou-Lagrange

What is more ridiculous than the burlesque theatrics of a gay pride parade?


  1. But to reach this humility of mind and heart, a profound purification is needed. That which we impose on ourselves is not sufficient; there must be a passive purification by the light of the gifts of the Holy Ghost, which causes the bandage of pride to fall away, opens our eyes, shows us the depth of frailty and wretchedness that exists in us, the utility of adversity and humiliation, and finally makes us say to the Lord: "It is good for me that Thou hast humbled me, that I may learn Thy justifications." (29) "It is good for us sometimes to suffer contradictions, and to allow people to think ill of us. . . . These are often helps to humility, and rid us of vainglory." (30) It is in adversity that we can learn what we really are and what great need we have of God's help: "What doth he know, that hath not been tried?" (31)
    Thank you, Terry. These readings are sometimes tough, but necessary. I have had, and have still, a long hard battle with pride.


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