Ten Important Virtues
August 27, 2011 2 Comments
Virtue; noun. 1. moral excellence; goodness; righteousness. 2. a good or admirable quality.
Upon reading this, it got me thinking that, 1. I haven’t heard the word virtue used very often for a very long time and 2. I began thinking about the ten important virtues I was taught growing up and my definitions/views of them. So, I decided to post about them because I’m a word nerd, it’s my blog, and it’s also something that is important to me and I believe to be worth sharing.
- Self-Discipline: In self-discipline, one makes a “disciple” of oneself. You are your own teacher, trainer, coach and of course, disciplinarian.
- Compassion: I believe that compassion is an active disposition toward fellowship and sharing, toward supportive companionship in distress. Compassion thus come close to the very heart of moral awareness.
- Responsibility: To be responsible is to be answerable, to be accountable. Taking responsibility in life is a sign of maturity.
- Work: Work is applied effort; it is whatever we put ourselves into wholeheartedly. The first step in doing things is learning how to do them.
- Courage: “We become brave by doing brave acts,” Aristotle. Courage is a settled disposition to feel appropriate degrees of fear and confidence in challenging situations.
- Perseverance: Always keep going, no matter what. “The noblest question in the world is: What good may I do in it?” -Ben Franklin.
- Honesty: To be honest is to be real, genuine, authentic and bona fide. Honesty is of pervasive importance, instilling and developing integrity and effective good will.
- Loyalty: Our loyalties are important signs of the kinds of persons we have chosen to become. To be a loyal citizen or friend means to operate within a certain framework of caring seriously about “the well-being of one’s country or comrade.”
- Friendship: Friendship usually rises out of mutual interests; a connection. Friendship is so much more than acquaintance, and it involves more than affection. The demands of friendship are all encouragements to moral maturation and even ennoblement.
- Faith, Hope, and Love: Faith, hope and love are formally regarded as theological virtues in traditional Christian doctrine. Faith contributes to the form and the content of the ideals that guide the aspirations we harbor for our own lives, and it affects the way we regard and behave with respect to others. Hope, is the ability to always believe in something no matter how impossible it may seem; it’s motivation for life itself. Love, love is difficult to define. It is much more than a risk… and it is more than a strong, positive emotion or affection. The Greeks actually chose to break it down into four separate categories:
- Agape Love. Agape love is unconditional love. It is love by “choice.” A good example of this is the way God loves us, despite our sins and faults.
- Philia Love. Philia love is the dispassionate virtuous love, guided by our likes or our healthy or unhealthy needs and desires.
- Storge. Storge is the word for familial love and the physical show of affection.
- Eros. Eros would be physical desire; like the love between a husband and wife.
As you, love is indeed a very difficult thing to define; but that only adds to the fact that it is one of the most important things in this life to have, cherish and nourish. As are all the above mentioned virtues.