The happiness of this life is ruined by universal injustice and madness

October 19, 2021 • 3 min

From The Sinner’s Guide, page 299

St. Cyprian, desiring to excite in a friend contempt for the world, makes use of this argument only. [L. ii. Ep. 2 ad Donat.]

He goes with him in spirit to a high mountain, whence he points out to him lands, seas, courts of justice, palaces and public places, all defiled with the abominations of sin.

At the same time he shows his friend, from this spectacle, how justly such a world merits his contempt, and how great should be his gratitude to God for having rescued him from all these evils.

Imitate this saint, and, rising in spirit above the world, gaze on the scene laid before you. You will be overwhelmed by the sight of so much falsehood, treachery, perjury, fraud, calumny, envy, hatred, vanity, and iniquities of every kind, but particularly the total forgetfulness of God which prevails in the world.

You will see the majority of men living like beasts, following the blind impulse of brutal passions, and living as regardless of justice or reason as if they were pagans, ignorant of the existence of God, and knowing no other object than to live and die.

You will see the innocent oppressed, the guilty acquitted, the just despised, the wicked honored and exalted, and interest always more powerful than virtue.

You will see justice bribed, truth disfigured, modesty unknown, arts ruined, power abused, public places corrupted.

You will see knaves, worthy of rigorous punishment, who, having become rich through fraud and rapine, are universally feared and honored.

You will see creatures like these, having little more than the appearance of men, filling high places and holding honorable offices.

You will see money worshipped instead of God, and its corrupting influence causing the violation of all laws, both human and divine.

Finally, you will behold in the greater part of the world justice existing only in name.

Then will you understand with how much reason the prophets said: “The Lord hath looked down from Heaven upon the children of men, to see if there be any that understand and seek God. They are all gone aside, they are become unprofitable together; there is none that doth good, no, not one.” [Ps. xiii. 2, 3.]

“There is no truth, and there is no mercy, and there is no knowledge of God in the land. Cursing, and lying, and killing, and theft, and adultery have overflowed, and blood hath touched blood.” [Osee iv. 1, 2.]

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