Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 294 – Part I.



YOUCAT Question n. 294 - Part I. Is someone a sinner if he experiences strong passions within himself?


(Youcat answer) No, passions can be very valuable. They are designed to lead to and reinforce good actions; only when they are disordered do the passions contribute to evil.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1767) In themselves passions are neither good nor evil. They are morally qualified only to the extent that they effectively engage reason and will. Passions are said to be voluntary, "either because they are commanded by the will or because the will does not place obstacles in their way" (St. Thomas Aquinas, STh I-II, 24, 1 corp. art.). It belongs to the perfection of the moral or human good that the passions be governed by reason (Cf. St. Thomas Aquinas, STh I-II, 24, 3).

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Passions that are ordered to the good become virtues. They then become the motive force of a life of fighting for love and justice. Passions that overpower a person, rob him of his freedom and entice him to evil, we call vice.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1768) Strong feelings are not decisive for the morality or the holiness of persons; they are simply the inexhaustible reservoir of images and affections in which the moral life is expressed. Passions are morally good when they contribute to a good action, evil in the opposite case. The upright will orders the movements of the senses it appropriates to the good and to beatitude; an evil will succumbs to disordered passions and exacerbates them. Emotions and feelings can be taken up into the virtues or perverted by the vices.

(This question: Is someone a sinner if he experiences strong passions within himself? is continued)

Monday, May 22, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 293 – Part II.



YOUCAT Question n. 293 - Part II. Why did God give us “passions” or emotions?


(Youcat answer - repeated) We have passions so that through strong emotions and distinct feelings we might be attracted to what is right and good and repelled from what is evil and bad.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1765) There are many passions. The most fundamental passion is love, aroused by the attraction of the good. Love causes a desire for the absent good and the hope of obtaining it; this movement finds completion in the pleasure and joy of the good possessed. The apprehension of evil causes hatred, aversion, and fear of the impending evil; this movement ends in sadness at some present evil, or in the anger that resists it. 

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) God made man in such a way that he can love and hate, desire or despise something, be attracted by some things and afraid of others, be full of joy, sorrow, or anger. In the depths of his heart man always loves good and hates evilor what he considers to be such.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1766) "To love is to will the good of another" (St. Thomas Aquinas, STh I-II, 26, 4, corp. art.). All other affections have their source in this first movement of the human heart toward the good. Only the good can be loved (Cf. St. Augustine, De Trin., 8, 3, 4: PL 42, 949-950). Passions "are evil if love is evil and good if it is good" (St. Augustine, De civ. Dei 14, 7, 2: PL 41, 410).

(The next question is: Is someone a sinner if he experiences strong passions within himself?)

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 293 – Part I.



YOUCAT Question n. 293 - Part I. Why did God give us “passions” or emotions?


(Youcat answer) We have passions so that through strong emotions and distinct feelings we might be attracted to what is right and good and repelled from what is evil and bad.

A deepening through CCC

 (CCC 1762) The human person is ordered to beatitude by his deliberate acts: the passions or feelings he experiences can dispose him to it and contribute to it. (CCC 1771) The term "passions" refers to the affections or the feelings. By his emotions man intuits the good and suspects evil. (CCC 1763) The term "passions" belongs to the Christian patrimony. Feelings or passions are emotions or movements of the sensitive appetite that incline us to act or not to act in regard to something felt or imagined to be good or evil.

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) God made man in such a way that he can love and hate, desire or despise something, be attracted by some things and afraid of others, be full of joy, sorrow, or anger. In the depths of his heart man always loves good and hates evilor what he considers to be such.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1764) The passions are natural components of the human psyche; they form the passageway and ensure the connection between the life of the senses and the life of the mind. Our Lord called man's heart the source from which the passions spring (Cf. Mk 7:21). (CCC 1772) The principal passions are love and hatred, desire and fear, joy, sadness, and anger. 

(This question: Why did God give us “passions” or emotions? is continued)

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 292 – Part II.



YOUCAT Question n. 292 - Part II. May we do something bad so that good can result from it?


(Youcat answer - repeated) No, we may never deliberately do something evil or tolerate an evil so that good can result from it. Sometimes there is no other course of action but to tolerate a lesser evil in order to prevent a greater evil.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1759) "An evil action cannot be justified by reference to a good intention" (cf. St. Thomas Aquinas, Dec. praec. 6). The end does not justify the means. (CCC 1756) It is therefore an error to judge the morality of human acts by considering only the intention that inspires them or the circumstances (environment, social pressure, duress or emergency, etc.) which supply their context. There are acts which, in and of themselves, independently of circumstances and intentions, are always gravely illicit by reason of their object; such as blasphemy and perjury, murder and adultery. One may not do evil so that good may result from it.   

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) The end does not justify the means. It cannot be right to commit infidelity so as to stabilize one’s marriage. It is just as wrong to use embryos for stem cell research, even if one could thereby make medical breakthroughs. It is wrong to try to “help” a rape victim by aborting her child.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1760) A morally good act requires the goodness of its object, of its end, and of its circumstances together. (CCC 1761) There are concrete acts that it is always wrong to choose, because their choice entails a disorder of the will, i.e., a moral evil. One may not do evil so that good may result from it.

(The next question is: Why did God give us “passions” or emotions?)

Friday, May 19, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 292 – Part I.



YOUCAT Question n. 292 - Part I. May we do something bad so that good can result from it?


(Youcat answer) No, we may never deliberately do something evil or tolerate an evil so that good can result from it. Sometimes there is no other course of action but to tolerate a lesser evil in order to prevent a greater evil.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1755) A morally good act requires the goodness of the object, of the end, and of the circumstances together. An evil end corrupts the action, even if the object is good in itself (such as praying and fasting "in order to be seen by men"). The object of the choice can by itself vitiate an act in its entirety. There are some concrete acts - such as fornication - that it is always wrong to choose, because choosing them entails a disorder of the will, that is, a moral evil.

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) The end does not justify the means. It cannot be right to commit infidelity so as to stabilize one’s marriage. It is just as wrong to use embryos for stem cell research, even if one could thereby make medical breakthroughs. It is wrong to try to “help” a rape victim by aborting her child.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1759) "An evil action cannot be justified by reference to a good intention" (cf. St. Thomas Aquinas, Dec. praec. 6). The end does not justify the means.

(This question: May we do something bad so that good can result from it? is continued)