Lust and Greed
Instead of men kneeling in confessionals admitting to lust, maybe they should be encouraged to regard greed, which was bottom of the male list, as a more devastating and destructive sin. In this respect, it is interesting to note that Pope Benedict has recently suggested that there is a close connection between original sin and the greed that has created the current economic crisis. It is also notable that the credit crunch has been created by a profession that is almost exclusively male. In the line-up of failed bankers, not a single woman’s name has appeared. Male greed has proven to be a murderous sin, destroying the livelihoods of millions, bringing down economies and social institutions and threatening starvation to the most vulnerable people on earth. Recent research at Cambridge University has revealed a connection between men’s behaviour on the trading floors and their testosterone levels. Men with high testosterone levels are more willing to take financial risks, and that risk-taking boosts their testosterone levels even higher. The global economic crisis may be the result of a testosterone tornado sweeping through the banking world. There is also mounting evidence that business productivity and efficiency increase when women are involved in management and decision-making, and it has long been recognised by aid agencies that women invest money more responsibly, implement development projects more effectively and are more likely to yield a return on the investment than men. Many surveys have also shown that women in all societies tend to work longer hours than men, which is perhaps why “sloth” is not high on the list of women’s sins.
And, apropos of my post on FOCA from a while back, I also liked this line:
Although the Catholic Church has since the Second Vatican Council been pragmatically pacifist in its consistent refusal to endorse war as a solution to conflict, the Church is still far more widely known for its moral absolutism on sexual issues than for its opposition to violence. That is partly because of distorted media reporting, but it is also because of the frequency with which the hierarchy pronounces on issues of sex and reproduction. Yet as we all know, Catholic social teaching has much more to offer. It offers a rich resource for condemning unjust social and economic structures and creating a more life-giving vision of society.
Catholics have a lot to offer on issues other than abortion, homosexuality, and stem cells. If we can’t all see eye to eye on these issues, can’t we at least agree to walk and chew gum at the same time?