Monday, October 8, 2007

Big Mac Known Better Than 10 Commandments

According to a recent study, more Americans can list all the ingredients in a Big Mac than remember all ten commandments. Of 1,000 participants, 60% could recall all of a Big Mac's ingredients, while less than 30% could recall the commandment to not take any false idols. Unfortunately, they did not list what percentage could recall all 10 commandments, but it must have been pretty low.

I must admit that I am not as big on the 10 commandments as I am on the seven virtues. The seven virtues are chastity, abstinence, liberality, diligence, patience, kindness, and humility. I prefer the 7 virtues because they give us something to strive for instead of stay away from (for the most part). In that sense they are more positive and more inclusive of fully lived Christian life. The virtues ask: "How can I best live out the Christian life" instead of "What do I have to avoid to get to heaven?"

Sadly, I would guess that less people could name the 7 virtues than list all 10 commandments. In addition, when the powers that be put together the new catechism in the 1990's, they made a conscious choice to follow the commandments rather than the virtues in the morality section. That indicates that our church hierarchy emphasizes the avoidance of evil rather than striving for goodness. It might seem that I'm cutting hairs, but I think that in general, it's a fair assessment.

A Faithful Catholic


Dad29 said...

Yah, I'll go along with that assessment. But of course, they are a synthesis--not opposed.

Therefore, while your assessment is hair-splittingly accurate, it is not the whole picture.

Terrence Berres said...

There's some precedent.

"Now someone approached him and said, 'Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?' He answered him, 'Why do you ask me about the good? There is only One who is good. If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.' " (Matthew 19:16-17)

Anonymous said...

ask Terrence Berres to go furthur in Matthew to chapter 22, 34-40. "Master, which is the greatest commandment of the law? Jesus said, you shall love the Lord your God.....the second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself..."

In the discussion of commandments and virtues let us not forget the Sermon on the Mountain and the Beatitudes.

Terrence Berres said...

Speaking of looking further, the contents of Part Three of the Catechism don't support F.C's thesis.