Virtue and Vice…the Dynamic Duo! by Lani Reagan

Virtue is important, but so is vice! Let’s face it, everyone lies at some point; everyone over-indulges; vents; curses and/or says unkind words to some degree or another. Vice can be fun, even though it can be the seed of much pain and suffering. But to a certain degree we actually need our vices because virtue is frequently perfected through the experience of our vices.

Yes, the process of moving oneself into greater degrees of transformation (and thereby more co-creative force) involves embracing and accepting our vices; the dark sides of our psyches, as holding as much relevance as the virtuous aspects of our nature. This means that loving all parts of our inner selves, without needing to self-judge or feel guilt, blame or contempt, is important if we expect to be able to conduct more light and goodness in our worlds. So how do you go about perfecting virtue through the awareness of your vices?

  1. Remember that no matter what vice you may be assessing or working with, you are not your vices (nor is the person you are angry at). You are not the vice of over-eating; over-drinking; verbal or mental violence. The Real You is a being of divine love, light and power, always (so is the person or thing you may be frustrated with). So commit to loving yourself (and others). Loving-kindness and Non-injury is the first of 5 Virtues that covers all things.
  2. The vices are practices we like to defend or indulge in to compensate for some inner discomfort we are only vaguely, if at all, aware of. The negative consequences resulting from our vices has the inherent capacity to gift us with greater degrees of light or awareness. Awareness increases our power to create. Don’t be afraid to practice self-honesty when looking at some of your vices or weaknesses to find the gold at the end of the rainbow. Self-honesty (and honesty with others) is the key to the second virtue since higher degrees of self-honesty entitle one to Accurate Perception and Correct Expression. When we are lovingly self-honest we empower ourselves to correct and improve.
  3. Avoid assuming that vices will just disappear on their own. Constancy of Aim and Effort is the third virtue. It’s the anti-thesis of laziness and complacency. It will improve your ability to get things done. It’s practice eliminates procrastination.
  4. When we complain of lack or are afraid of loss, we are out of alignment with the virtue of Generosity and Non-Stealing. It is in giving that we receive, as we sow abundantly we receive abundantly. This is the divine law. One seed of wheat yields many grains. Become a gracious and generous giver, while resting in a state of receivership, to minimize the vice of selfishness or greed or with-holding….Tithe, tip well, be giving.
  5. Any circumstance we find ourselves complaining about has a lesson for us on how to develop our virtue. Are we complaining about feeling betrayed or mistreated in some way? Are we complaining about our jobs or partners or work? Moderation and Non-excessiveness is the final virtue as it helps us to be moderate in our perspectives and actions. Practicing this, eliminates all manners of imbalance and enhances all the other virtues.

And let’s face it, we are all being tested with regard to our virtue. How much will we choose lover over hate; action over re-action; inclusion over exclusion; kindness over judgements and resentments? The world needs more virtue. We are simply being called to perfect it through the vices…..