No good works where pride abides

“Not to be proud.” (cf Titus 1:7 Rule of Benedict 4.34)

Hieronymus Bosch- The Seven Deadly Sins and th...
Hieronymus Bosch- The Seven Deadly Sins – Pride (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

StBenedict titled this chapter the Tools for Good Works. It becomes apparent that the Tools are not the Works.  While some prescribe good deeds (e.g., works of mercy) many of the tools reshape the monk, not the world.

Pride was the last of Cassian‘s deadly sins, worse even than gluttony, anger, and fornication. Pride is the sin, that makes us blind to our failings. It makes even bad deeds appear virtuous.

Pride’s antidote, humility, fills the Rule’s longest chapter. Monks learn it slowly.

Avoiding pride is a necessary first step for doing good works; learning the virtue may take longer.

Tooling Through Lent is a series of brief reflections on Chapter 4 of the Rule of Benedict, The Tools for Good Works.

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