“He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire.”
By Winston Churchill
Truth is we all have vices. Can you name one person who has no vice, no matter how big or small?
We all know of human vices such as: drinking, smoking, gambling, overeating, hurting oneself or others etc. But overlook vices that are never physically expressed but only experienced within the constraints of one’s mind. Feelings of anger, hatred, jealousy, self pity, neglect can be equally malignant as any of the vices listed above. Over a period of time such negative emotions can and often do become toxic. They not only weaken our own moral character but also break down our physical and mental well being.
Yet as humans we have all experienced these negative emotions and or behaviors from time to time. The key is to first realize and accept our vice or weakness and then resolve to improve it. I would not be concerned if a person told me they had a vice. I would however be concerned if a person told me he had no vice. According to me such a person is either an angel or completely lacks an insight into his own soul. Such a person is probably so self-righteous that he has lost the ability to see any fault in himself.
If you know you have made a mistake, you can resolve to fix it, but if you truly believe you never ever made a mistake you have nothing to resolve.
You then continue existing in the throes of your vice, repeating the same mistakes over and over again, eventually hurting yourself and those around you. Unfortunately vices only give momentary pleasure, but in the longer run lead to feelings of guilt, lack of control, self pity, self loathing and so forth.
The idea is not to be devoid of all vices completely. Some smaller vices such as an infrequent indulgence in chocolate once in a while may be perfectly acceptable for example. The idea is to simply keep our vices controlled. For instance, if you smoke a packet of cigarette a day, then reduce it to half. If you smoke half a packet then endeavor to reduce it to two or three cigarettes, eventually eliminating the dependency.
If you are frequently caught in the web of negative emotions, then persevere to at least become acutely aware of it. Controlling negative emotions takes time and practice but becoming aware of them is the first step to change.
According to Joel Osteen,
“When the negative thoughts come – and they will; they come to all of us – it’s not enough to just not dwell on it… You’ve got to replace it with a positive thought.”
(quoted from http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/joelosteen)
Negative energies in the long run lead to harmful negative behaviors which in turn cause us to harm ourselves and our loved ones. There is no easy way out. But realization of one’s faults, weaknesses, vices is the beginning to the end.
Having a vice is human, having the ability to forgive somebody’s vice is divine, but the inability to accept ones vice or overlook it completely is simply moronic.
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5 thoughts on “Do you have a vice?”
This opened my eyes a little further, thanks.
Thank you, so happy to hear it helped. That’s the beauty of prose and poetry, it resonates the truth that we know.