Encyclopedia > Virtue

  Article Content

Virtue

A virtue is a good character trait.

The four classic "cardinal" virtues as held by the Catholic Church are:

Classically, some philosophers said that in order to pursue any of these perfectly, one would have to master them all. For example, in order to be just, one must be wise. The interactions of these definitions are called "The harmonies of virtue," and they are a classic topic for the instruction of young people, and an interesting study for many people.

Seneca, the Roman Stoic said that perfect prudence is indistinguishable from perfect virtue. His point was that if you take the longest view, and consider all the consequences, in the end, a perfectly prudent person would act in the same way as a perfectly virtuous person. Many people have found it valuable to determine how each of the virtues is prudent, as well as how they harmonize.

The Christian virtues are conventionally faith, hope and charity. These have particular conventional meanings that are said to perfect one's love of God and Man. It is claimed that these also harmonize and partake of prudence, given the peculiarities of Christian theology.

The opposite of a virtue is a vice. One way of organizing the vices is as the corruption of the virtues. Thus the cardinal vices would be apostasy, lust, cowardice, folly and venality. The Christian vices would be blasphemy, unforgiveness[?], and indifference (scripturally, a "hardened heart[?]").

See also: morality, ethics, goodness, value theory, consequentialism, social justice, piety, virtue ethics



All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

 
  Search Encyclopedia

Search over one million articles, find something about almost anything!
 
 
  
  Featured Article
Dez Cadena

...     Contents Dez Cadena Dez Cadena was the third vocalist and later rhythm guitarist for punk band Black Flag. After leaving the band in 1982 following ...