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Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Predominant Fault Series Continued

Those regular readers know that I have done in the past a series on the predominant fault. Just follow the tags and labels. Some posts are linked below.

Remember when I wrote of the possibility of us having more than one? Well, apparently, St. Francis de Sales wrote that he had two predominant faults, as noted by St. Alphonsus Ligouri in his book, The Twelve Steps to Holiness and Salvation.

St. Francis de Sales admitted to having anger and love as his two predominant faults. Today, I want to examine what both saints wrote of these two predominant faults.

Firstly, St. Alphonsus reveals that anyone who gets upset with sin in one's own life is not humble, but proud, and may be exhibiting the predominant fault of anger. Anger is not merely focused on other or events, but one can look at one's self in anger.

St Alphonsus corrects one's perception by noting that the humble person quietly and resignedly accepts sin as part of life (until the Unitive State), and that one must pray to God, as did St. Catherine of Genoa, to see the good in one, the fruit of repentance, not merely the horror of sin.

"Lord, see, here is the fruit from my own garden! But, pardon me, I beg Thee!" A quick and sincere prayer reveals a humble heart.

And, St. Francis de Sales warns against all types of anger, even towards one's self.

That St. Francis admitted his own predominant faults encourages us to face and overcome our own, with grace. He wrote that it took his twelve years to overcome anger, working on that sin for that length of time.

Some women have shared with me that vainglory is a predominant fault-that is, wanting to be noticed, wanting to be attractive.

St. Francis shared that one of his predominant faults was love. How can love be a fault, one might ask?

Love many be inordinate or focused too much on people rather than God Himself. God is a Jealous God when it comes to our hearts. When St. Francis changed the emphasis of his love to God, he finally overcame that predominant fault of misplaced love.

More here are some links

Friday, 6 December 2013

More on The Predominant Fault AND Many Links

For those interested in most of the postings on the predominant fault, I have tried to find most of the links on this subject, which is a Catholic idea, btw, and not a protestant one.

As one who is being dragged into looking at my predominant faults, I can assure you the journey is painful, but worth it.

As Garrigou-Lagrange notes, without a struggle, we shall not be made perfect, as we are called to be. 

Mortification plays a huge part in the destruction of the predominant fault. 

Let God lead into those murky waters of sin in order to deal with the predominant fault. Here is a selection from the great Dominican.

The truth is that without this persevering and efficacious struggle we cannot sincerely aspire to Christian perfection, toward which the supreme precept makes it a duty for all of us to tend. This precept is, in fact, without limit: "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart and with thy whole soul and with all thy strength and with all thy mind: and thy neighbor as thyself." (11)
Without this struggle, there is no interior joy or peace, for the tranquility of order or peace comes from the spirit of sacrifice. It alone establishes us interiorly in order by putting to death all that is inordinate in US.(12)
Lastly, charity, the love of God and of souls in God, finally prevails completely over the predominant fault; it then truly occupies the first place in our soul and reigns there effectively. Mortification, which makes our principal fault disappear, delivers us and assures the predominance in our soul of our true natural qualities and of our special attraction of grace. Thus little by little, we grow to be ourselves, in the broad sense of the word, that is, to be supernaturally ourselves minus our defects. We do not have to copy in a more or less servile manner another's qualities, or enter a uniform mold that is the same for all. There is a great variety in human personalities, just as no two leaves or flowers are perfectly similar. But a person's temperament must not be crushed; it must be transformed while keeping whatever is good in it. In our temperament, our character must be the imprint of the acquired and infused virtues, especially of the theological virtues. Then, instead of instinctively referring everything to self, as is the case when the predominant fault reigns, we will turn everything back to God, think almost continually of Him, and live for Him alone; at the same time we will lead to Him those with whom we come into contact.