Friday, September 22, 2006

All Virtue ought to be prudent.

Omnis virtus moralis debet esse prudens: all virtue is necessarily prudent. Only someone who is silent is listening. And only the invisible is transparent. To be sure, a deeper silence than mere abstention from speech and utterance is required. There is also interior speech which must also become mute, so things might find their proper utterance.
Since reason is nothing else than the power to understand reality, then all reasonable, sensible, sound, clear, and heart-stirring talk stems from listening silence. Thus all discourse requires a foundation in the motherly depth of silence. Otherwise speech is sourceless: it turns into chatter, noise, and deception.
We lose our speech not only when we are forced down below the threshold of our being but also when we are raised up above our capacities. (Josef Pieper)
Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice. But the wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace.
Where do the wars and where do the conflicts among you come from? Is it not from your passions that make war within your members? You kill and envy but you cannot obtain; you fight and wage war. (St. James, Apostle)

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