"Vengeance is Mine says the Lord", is a strictly karmic viewpoint.
(A Course in Miracles)
The seven deadly sins are well-known to most in the western world, envy, gluttony, greed, lust, pride, laziness, and anger. I am actually doing just fine with most of them but two. I have been hardworking all my life, and if anything, have only recently learned to take it a bit easier. When it comes to anger, I can only watch in amazement the helpless explosion that some people experience when someone pushes a wrong button. I have never really been greedy, can mostly keep my appetite in check, and have even outgrown envy since I discovered the WAY. Put simply, there is no-one in whose shoes I'd rather walk than mine. Yet, the areas I don't do so well, I am proud as a Spaniard on occasions, and I definitely crave sex. So pride and lust offer me room for spiritual improvement, though neither one currently interferes much with my path either.
Lust is sexual greed and I have to profess that I am greedy when it comes to sex. Actually, I don't think that prudishness has to be the only spiritual alternative, and I definitely applaud the efforts of others to experiment with alternative lifestyles such as tantric energies. Yet, for me personally, I see little alternative but to keep that energy mostly bottled up and watch the consequences. On pride, I am definitely work in progress as well. You should see the Leo that starts roaring when I feel mistreated, or if I feel that someone looks down on me. Yet, the beauty of the WAY is that life has given me perfect outlets to understand this energy in me. Also, I noticed that after every explosion, a little of the drive has diminished, while the wheels of karma and my own energy are much better understood. The ability to let go of the old self is the whole purpose of the WAY.
I remember an episode when I picked a fight with numerous experts in the firm I am working for only because I felt overlooked and side-lined. I came out victorious after months of battle, but I also was bruised and battered from exhaustion. Next time around I will understand the wheels of karma and my energy much better, and I will likely be less emotionally involved. That's the lesson of the WAY. You can learn to rest at the center of the circle while the karma of life is working its way through. Once you reach this level of spiritual maturity you can watch patches of your old self peel off just as naturally as the old skin of a snake falls off when the new one appears.
The above quote from the Course in Miracles says it all. The original meaning of the word "sin" just implies missing the mark. GOD will always love us no matter what and will present the next opportunity to re-engage with the WAY even if we faltered this time around. So what, the archer had a bad day and will try better next time around. There is no shame and no regret, we just wiggle a little to catch up with the WAY again. Succumbing to envy, gluttony, greed, lust, pride, laziness, and anger don't mean that we are bad per se, it merely implies that there are subconscious processes that have to be understood, experienced and outgrown. Yet, again, once we spiritual travelers put our consciousness on a problem area, progress happens pretty quickly for the simple reason that the universe conspires to set us free.
I admitted in the notes that life still takes me occasionally to the cleaners when it comes to lust and pride. So what! I like the direction I am taking and very much look forward to reading the story that I am currently writing for my SELF. Is something bothering you? Do you feel ashamed of your past? Are there areas in your life where circumstances pressure-wash your self on occasions? Perhaps you can share your insights with us.