Greed…. ( Canticle of Anna Part 3 )

” The bows of the mighty are broken, while the tottering gird on strength.  The well fed hire themselves out for bread, while the hungry  no longer have to toil.

The barren wife bears seven sons, while the mother of many languishes.  The Lord Puts to death, and  gives life, Casts down to sheol and brings up again.

The lord makes poor and makes rich, humbles and also exults”.

 

This section of the canticle speaks of a reversal of roles, or changes in fortune where the weak, now triumph and stand in victory over their foes.  These feelings  or dreams or desires seem to look forward to a time when those who were in power or in control are made to suffer the same fate as those whom they had previously had the power or control over in the first place.

There is a certain problem in this viewpoint.  There is a yearning for deliverance from suffering, and from hardship.  A desire for peace and well being..  this is something that everyone desires.  Issues abound when desire for our own well being turns into or gives way, or causes the suffering of others.

Too often, however, fear, greed, and insecurities cause the desires for well being to turn into that same suffering and pains that become inflicted upon others.  Anger, hate and jealousy cause those who wanted relief from the pain they felt to be inflicted on others.

Mother Teresa of Calcutta said ” it is a poverty that a child must die in order that you may live as you wish”.  In this particular case, Mother Teresa was speaking of the violent act of abortion who is a terrible stain on the conscience of the whole world.  Let us expand on this statement or idea for a moment.  It applies not only to abortion, but through all of the human condition.

When a corporation fails to pay its workers  enough of a living wage to provide for the necessities of life, in the name of profit, the issue takes a different role.  If the employee can not pay for or afford medical care or medicines, or the time away from the job to properly care for either themselves or a loved one.  This too is a poverty and a sin of greed that stains our world.

Governments who’s internal or domestic laws and policies make it so that the life and spiritual welfare of its people are not its highest priority.  WHere the government robs the individual of the blessings that come from being able to provide for their families.  Where people have the necessity of begging because they are not able to provide for their families.  It is a poverty  when those in the government  strip people of the ability to care for themselves and the sense of self worth and accomplishments that come from the dignity of work.

It is a poverty when governments have policies that either by design or as a resultant cause the death and suffering of others through the lack of these necessities of life in other places because they desire to change the behavior , culture, or policies of the others.  The stain of greed coves us when governments exploit  others, other people, other resources, other cultures, and those of faith, because of their own greed and gain.

Finally, there is the individual.  The person who causes the suffering of others driven by sin.  The desires for power  and position.  THe desire for money and material gains.  The constant drain that is the search for control over their own lives.  Those desires that are never satiated  causing the empty cycle of the  ” addiction of more.. “.

 

The person faced with choices to make who chooses gain or profit over the hardships of others, who chooses material over morals.  These do not have to be huge life altering events.  These can be little choices made without consideration , seemingly insignificant so small can the footsteps be separating the moral from the material., unnoticed, and possibly, to the individual,  unknowing of how they ended up o the path they were on.

 

When these who have suffered gain relief and then obtain control, there remains the pain of the suffering that they endured.  The person who escapes the suffering who has geared for a ling time , has though what might happen during the time when they are at peace.  They never want to suffer again, and when they get ahead or get away from their suffering  they will do what ever it takes to never go back again .  In some cases there is the desire for “justice” where we want the others who caused the suffering to suffer the same way we did , possibly even more !  Those desires spring up as we experience the peaks and valleys of our lives and how it is that we view them.

 

St Paul said ” I was given a thorn in my side as an angel of satan to beat me so that I would  not be too elated”    Three times he asked the Lord to remove these from him but the Lord said that it is in weakness that you are made strong.  My grace is sufficient for thee.

 

In this therefore, we know that in our suffering , and in our despair , it is then that the decisions are made to love or to hate.  If we choose hate, and greed and anger, then we have taken the first step on the road to the ” material”.  IF we choose love then our faith, tested in fire tempered and purified becomes even more precious and is a testament to others as light in this world.

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