The monks of old had a list they called the Seven Deadly Sins. The list went this way:
Superbia (pride), Invidia (envy) Ira (wrath) Avaritia (greed) Gula (gluttony)
That's one of the Big Seven we're all familiar with here on Spark People.
However, this isn't the one I'm talking about today. Continuing the list, is Luxuria, (Lust) and the last one is one that always flies under the radar, and is my greatest temptation this year.
It is the one called Acedia.
Commonly called "sloth."
It's often identified with laziness,
But there's far more to it, which makes it particularly deadly. This year has been a discouraging year for me after the great accomplishments of last year. I've been on a year-long plateau,
The scale hasn't been kind to me,
And the temptation is to say "What's the use?"
Throw in the towel,
and just give up.
Which is the perfect description of Acedia. Dorothy Sayers once said
"The Church names the sixth Deadly Sin Acedia or Sloth. In the world, it calls itself Tolerance; but in Hell it is called Despair. It is the accomplice of the other sins and their worst punishment. It is the sin which believes in nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, loves nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, lives for nothing, and only remains alive because there is nothing it would die for. We have known it far too well for many years. The only thing perhaps that we have not known about it is that it is mortal sin." Sayers, "The Other Six Deadly Sins."
Its effect is shown graphically in this clip from The Neverending Story, where the horse Artax dies from it in the swamps of sadness:
is a deadly crossroad that is easy to fall into when things aren't going the way you want to.
when you just don't care anymore.
And that is when I need all of you Sparkers.
For it is a dangerous time, one we all face though we don't know how we got there.
The step out of the swamp is hard,
But the alternative
is deadly. The way out needs help
To start caring again,
regaining the lost passion,
when it's so easy to doze off into a fatal lethargy.
In other words, don't give up, CARE!