boreal: (Winter)
[personal profile] boreal
Slacktivist has this morning made a post that, in full, reads as follows:

Happy Birthday Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. And thank you for giving us this:

Seven Deadly Sins
* Wealth without work
* Pleasure without conscience
* Science without humanity
* Knowledge without character
* Politics without principle
* Commerce without morality
* Worship without sacrifice

I found my reaction to this list to be very interesting, in that I could nod my head in agreement on all but the last one. Clicking through to the comment thread, a great deal of the discussion at the blog entry swarms around this last bullet as well. One of the commenters (MadGastronomer) thoughtfully states:

A sacrifice* is anything you give to your god(s). A sacrifice of time, of money, of energy, of material things. If you don't give something -- give it up unto god(s) -- then in what way are you worshipping?

*From the Latin for "to make sacred" or "to set aside."

Perhaps it's my panentheistic leanings, but the last one really doesn't click with me. I try to live with intention and balance, to be present in each moment and conscious of how each decision I make affects others, and to speak to the Divine often—more than daily, usually—to give thanks for my circumstances, to comment on beauty, to send energy to others who need it, to look for new ways of approaching issues, etc.

In my particular path, there's no need to sacrifice. The term sacrifice, to me, implies loss. Others see my actions as overly idealistic and think that I'm sacrificing my time or my money or my energy, but for me that's just part of doing what's right. It simply is. And it brings me contentment and joy.

Date: 2010-10-03 01:08 am (UTC)
sharpest_asp: painting of the great pyramid and the Dog Star (General: Pyramid)
From: [personal profile] sharpest_asp
Sacrifice need not mean loss. At all. I think there is a reason I like the term votives or devotions for the efforts and energy and time spent in pursuit of ones religion. Because the semantics behind sacrifice imply loss, yet it is not what I mean when I speak of willingly choosing to spend time in thought or prayer or action pursuing my ideas of the divine versus a more selfish project.


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