Anger - Mortal Sin


#1

Today I got extremely angry with my brother, screamed at him (I did not swear), and hit him in the head. My intent was not to seriously injure him, but I did want to hurt him and I was very angry with him.
I hope this isn’t a dumb question, but does this sound like it was serious?


#2

Compendium issued by Pope Benedict XVI

  1. When does one commit a mortal sin?

1855-1861
1874

One commits a mortal sin when there are simultaneously present: grave matter, full knowledge, and deliberate consent. This sin destroys charity in us, deprives us of sanctifying grace, and, if unrepented, leads us to the eternal death of hell. It can be forgiven in the ordinary way by means of the sacraments of Baptism and of Penance or Reconciliation.

  1. When does one commit a venial sin?

1862-1864
1875

One commits a venial sin, which is essentially different from a mortal sin, when the matter involved is less serious or, even if it is grave, when full knowledge or complete consent are absent. Venial sin does not break the covenant with God but it weakens charity and manifests a disordered affection for created goods. It impedes the progress of a soul in the exercise of the virtues and in the practice of moral good. It merits temporal punishment which purifies.

vatican.va/archive/compendium_ccc/documents/archive_2005_compendium-ccc_en.html


#3

Anger can be mortal ...and it can be venial. And can sometimes be difficult too due to the passions involved.

(and there is even "Just Anger" like that of Jesus in the Temple!)

Examples of mortal sin:

If one deliberately desires to murder someone or seriously wound someone -- such is gravely against charity.

One could note is when it leads to serious injustice or serious scandal...seriously offends charity ...or hatred of God etc. Such are also grave.

Also In terms of immoderate outbursts...such can often be venial sin.

Though if a person were to deliberately go into such a rage that it they can be considered to have lost their reason...then it is a different story.

I imagine more could be said ...

Your confessor can assist you in judging such if needed.

In general regarding mortal sin:

Compendium issued by Pope Benedict XVI

  1. When does one commit a mortal sin?

1855-1861
1874

One commits a mortal sin when there are simultaneously present: grave matter, full knowledge, and deliberate consent. This sin destroys charity in us, deprives us of sanctifying grace, and, if unrepented, leads us to the eternal death of hell. It can be forgiven in the ordinary way by means of the sacraments of Baptism and of Penance or Reconciliation.

  1. When does one commit a venial sin?

1862-1864
1875

One commits a venial sin, which is essentially different from a mortal sin, when the matter involved is less serious or, even if it is grave, when full knowledge or complete consent are absent. Venial sin does not break the covenant with God but it weakens charity and manifests a disordered affection for created goods. It impedes the progress of a soul in the exercise of the virtues and in the practice of moral good. It merits temporal punishment which purifies.

vatican.va/archive/compendium_ccc/documents/archive_2005_compendium-ccc_en.html


#4

[quote="timeandeternity, post:1, topic:318927"]
Today I got extremely angry with my brother, screamed at him (I did not swear), and hit him in the head. My intent was not to seriously injure him, but I did want to hurt him and I was very angry with him.
I hope this isn't a dumb question, but does this sound like it was serious?

[/quote]

It aren't a mortal sin because according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which Pope John Paul II said is "a sure norm for teaching the faith" says:
" If anger reaches the point of a deliberate desire to kill or seriously wound a neighbor, it is gravely against charity; it is a mortal sin." (Number 2302)


#5

[quote="The_Blunt_Brig, post:4, topic:318927"]
It aren't a mortal sin because according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which Pope John Paul II said is "a sure norm for teaching the faith" says:
" If anger reaches the point of a deliberate desire to kill or seriously wound a neighbor, it is gravely against charity; it is a mortal sin." (Number 2302)

[/quote]

(Without getting into judging the other persons particular act of anger)

It is important to note that the Catechism is not meant to be an exhaustive source of Theology --including Moral Theology.

(and in noting that -- I add that I am a very big advocate of the Catechism :) :thumbsup:)


#6

Talk to a priest about it rather than a bunch of anonymous people on the Internet. They can't tell you it was mortal.


#7

Anger is a passion that is morally neutral in and of itself. The problem arises when our anger becomes disordered. Shouting at a beloved family member before physically assaulting them is disordered if your brother was not physically threatening someone. On the flip side, not becoming angry when confronted with an evil may also be a sin - a sin of omission, or failing to act. From the catechism:

1765 There are many passions. The most fundamental passion is love, aroused by the attraction of the good. Love causes a desire for the absent good and the hope of obtaining it; this movement finds completion in the pleasure and joy of the good possessed. The apprehension of evil causes hatred, aversion, and fear of the impending evil; this movement ends in sadness at some present evil, or in the anger that resists it.

Our task is to ensure that our anger is well ordered.


#8

Not to take away from the other quite valid replies here but if your anger reached the point where you struck someone else - your brother! - in the head, then I'd say yes, that's pretty serious. I would hope that you have since apologized to him, begged his forgiveness and have made amends. Please examine your conscience very carefully and pray that your anger may be controlled.


#9

Thanks everyone for your responses. Being someone who deals with scrupulosity (but is still capable of committing serious sins), I’m asking this question here because I’m wavering back and forth between, “It was definitely serious,” and “It was just venial.”

I still have no clue, but thanks for your advice!


#10

[quote="timeandeternity, post:9, topic:318927"]
Thanks everyone for your responses. Being someone who deals with scrupulosity (but is still capable of committing serious sins), I'm asking this question here because I'm wavering back and forth between, "It was definitely serious," and "It was just venial."

I still have no clue, but thanks for your advice!

[/quote]

Be sure to have a regular confessor to assist you --such is the age old practice with scruples

Aside from the particular question here --I'm wavering back and forth between, "It was definitely serious," and "It was just venial." --can be common with scrupulosity.

A regular confessor to assist you-- to even give you principles to follow due to scrupulosity is the way to go.


#11

depends on a lot of things, you need to ask your priest.
Was it in self defense.
Were you being abusive.
How hard did you hit him. etc. etc.
How far in ages are you apart. If he is a little brother and you are big brother both in several years and you are much bigger than him…I would say it is much more serious.

Hitting him in the head is not too nice either…that is where his brain is, different than hitting him in the arm.

I know someone who used to abuse and hit his little brother all the time…The little brother later grew up and ended up in prison.

When we hit children repeatedly out of anger, we teach them that it is ok to attack others with violence, and it we do all sorts of damage and cause untold emotional trauma, and they grow up hating themselves and being angry at the world.

Again, if you were defending yourself, that may be another thing.

You really should tell your confessor about it, and let him tell you, and stop trying to figure it out yourself, and you might owe your brother an apology.


#12

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