Sacrifice — a Great, Forgotten Virtue
Daily Meditation — 4/17/2022
There are a great many forgotten virtues.
Sacrifice has all but lost its meaning. Even today, on Easter, one is reminded of it as Jesus gave up his life for the whole world’s sins and trespasses.
However, even for those who are not Christian, we should be reminded of the forgotten virtue of Sacrifice.
A moment sitting in silence as you wait your turn in the grocery store. Someone — or perhaps their child — was ill and unable to make it into work, so now, instead of three checkouts, there’s only two.
Suffering in the gym for an hour each day and carefully counting calories, now, so that you better enjoy a higher quality of life, overall, for a longer period of years.
Taking a little bit of every bit of pay aside to accumulate investments, today, foregoing a pizza, bottle of scotch, or nicer car to ensure you, your spouse, and children can better enjoy later years…or even early retirement…
Instead, nowadays we live in opulence and endless Epicurean delights.
A casino of endless orgasms keep you reeling with games and movies.
Apps and reminders masturbate your attention span into impotence.
Webs of addictive hooks bury into your soul rendering you unable to escape one without falling into another…
Where once men wrestled and lifted stones in honorable contest and feats of strength, instead, they now partake in them with a digital persona while their real self erodes into a personality-less, formless husk.
We once held public forum where we rationally argued our beliefs (or really, took a view for an hour) to sharpen our tongues and minds to the art of oration and better thinking. Now, we mute and wall off anyone of dissenting opinion, lest our tender minds be dissolved by the acid of what we perceive as an incorrect point of view…
Your lack of the ability to sacrifice our time, energy, and resources in the now in exchange for something greater in the future has softened you like a tortoise without a shell.
Even if it’s five minutes to switch off your phone and to sit outside in silence each day, take the time to learn the mastery of sacrificing.
Play your game for 55 minutes, then learn Chinese for 5.
Read for 5.
Meditate for 5.
Then next week every day, change it to 6.
If you are unwilling to do something unpleasant today, then someday eventually, you will be forced to do something far worse…
Failure to care for your body, today, will mean someday — perhaps when it is inconvenient — you will fall ill or die, prematurely…
Failure to invest, today, will mean when you’re old and aching, instead of having a morning nap, you will go work.
Failure to put down the bottle, today, to spend time with your spouse could mean someday they will find someone else.
Failure to invest into the tenets of Eudaimonia may mean you enjoy life all day, today, but someday will cumulate into years of suffering!
Take time today to make time better tomorrow.
Follow for daily philosophical meditations.
These are distillations from my coming book “YouDaimonia: the Ancient Philosophy of Human Flourishing.”