please don’t say I’m silly… even if i am
Sort of… but it might help if I explained why. You know how a lot of of these Examinations are based on the Ten Commandments. Now, I can read the ten commandments and it seems pretty straight forward. Also, some of the examinations are based on the Seven deadly sins. They can also seem pretty straight forward to me… or so i tend to think. The problem comes when I start reading these things and they list various sins that fall under the category of one of the commandments. Many are easy for me to get, but there are usually some that tend to stump me.
I tend to want to know what the sin is and why it falls under a specific commandment and why it’s related to this other sin under that commandment… and whether is falls under multiple commandments. The examinations don’t always explain why.
For example, Thou shalt not kill… (taken from the Examination you posted)
Murder, suicide, or manslaughter — This I understand.
Willful engagement in Unjust lawsuits — This one I have trouble with, because it seems to me to fall under lying and not killing. It also seems to fall under stealing. I don’t understand why it’s placed under murder.
This is why I get confused concerning an Examination of Conscience. Plus, not all the examinations are consistent. Some are just downright vague.
I’ve never unjustly sued someone, but if I was presented with that temptation… I’d like to know just how serious the sin is so I can avoid doing it. Not that I’m asking for a explanation now. This is just an example.
Here’s another example from the Examination you linked (no explanation required)…
Honor thy father and Thy mother…
Serious disrespect for or disobedience to parents, superiors, or authorities — I understand this.
Abuse or serious neglect of children – This one I had to think about a lot, because it says children. At first, I was thinking this belongs under breaking other commandments. Then I realized that the words “superior” and “authority” are the key to understanding why it’s here, but I had to connect the previous situation to this one to make a connection. I don’t have children, but I really had to think about it. It can still fall under other commandments.
Some of the categories seem like they are necessarily repeated…
You shall not steal…
Stealing something consecrated to God or from a Holy place – Stealing is stealing… but this might go under another commandment.
I usually have to cross out all the things I know I didn’t do… especially the one’s that are within my capacity to commit. Then there’s things like this…
“Willful failure to bury the body or ashes of the dead”-- which is listed under “Thou Shalt not kill”.
Okay… I’m not a mortician or funeral director… so this is something I’m not likely to do. The guy is already dead, as well. In my station in life, would that mean not providing money or funeral preparations for a dead loved one? Falls under other commandments?
These things are confusing. I wish examinations would deal with specific sins and then explain all the Commandments they break. How about an examination of conscience for housewives or lawyers? Something that deals with specific stations in life along with the situations of sin that apply to everyone.
“This sin breaks these commandments, because… (insert explanation).”