Is it easier to post what isn't a sin?

I’m reading though many of these threads, am I’m simply gob-smacked at what the Catholic Church regards as a sin. I would never even have considered that most of the stuff were sins.

I’m probably constantly sinning and don’t even realise it.

Would it not be easier to post a list of what isn’t sinning?

Some posters here are scrupulous, which means they are obsessed with whether their minor actions have constituted sin. Being scrupulous is not a good thing.

It is human nature to be sinful. It is a fact of life that we will sin. Just do your best to stop with God’s grace helping you along.

Once you eliminate the big problems (sins) in your life, the smaller ones will become evident to you. Focus on the big hole in the side of your ship, then worry about whether the silverware is polished.

Jesus,our Lords peace be with You.
First,sorry for my bad english. When I think what sin is,and what is sin,I find that I do a lot wrong,the “list” of not a sin is howewer longer then the other list,the “this is a sin” list. All we need to do is to read our Bible,the Cateshism and like a old lady living in the same building as I am,ask her self,she actually has a poster on the wall saying “What would Jesus do?”. (She is a mormon,but my best friend in this building and we never “compere” faiths.) That is how I stay on narrow road that is,as I hope,heaven bound.

Do not consider the postings here to be necessarily representative of what the Catholic Church regards as a sin. As broconsul said, some of it is simply scrupulosity.

If you want to know what the Catholic Church teaches about sin, I would encourage you to look at the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Part 3 on Life in Christ (CCC 1691-2557) addresses sin and the Church’s moral teaching.

There are certainly many things that are intrinsically morally evil according to Catholic teaching (masturbation, pornography, fornication, abortion, etc.) and most of these are outlined in the Catechism.

However, sometimes morally neutral actions can be sinful for a particular person depending upon the situation. For example, let’s take a look at watching TV (and we’ll assume for the sake of argument that the show in question is undeniably morally benign). In and of itself, it is not sinful. However, if an individual is spending an inordinate amount of time watching TV to the extent that they are failing to meet their obligations and responsibilities, then watching would be a sin for them (with the real sin being perhaps intemperance, gluttony and/or laziness).

I think what happens here at CAF is that many threads will involve some such morally neutral action and in responding to that individual OP’s specific concerns, it can make things sound more harsh than they really are (depending upon the poster. ;)).

Yes, it would.

It seems like it would be an infinitely shorter list.
Thanks to Original Sin a human being sins just by existing.

It would be easier to read the Catechism, for starters, regarding sin. Start with para 1846-1876. More useful is that entire section, para 1691-2557.

Sin is not about lists.

And then read the massive proportion of the Catechism that is NOT about sin, but is instead a positive affirmation of Catholic belief, then compare it to the small proportion of the Catechism that makes reference to sin.

Gives you a different perspective on things.

I think that looking for a list is probably the wrong way to go about considering sin and trying to live a holy life.

And next time you find yourself surprised at how many “normal” acts are sinful consider this: Due to our fallen nature, you deserve to languish in hell for the rest of eternity. It’s only by God’s love and mercy that you’re saved from the fate that you (and I, and everyone) so richly deserve.


That is my main moral and philosophical objection to Catholicism and most other Christian denominations. Because the idea that a all-powerful, all-knowing, loving god would torture his own people FOREVER merely for not worshiping him defies reason or any sort of worthwhile moral code.

As you said, under this system it doesn’t really matter what a person thinks or does (or even if the person doesn’t get a chance to do much at all like a boy or girl who died as a baby), ALL humans deserve to be tortured regardless. Merely for the ‘crime’ of being human.

Original sin greatly darkens the intellect and erodes the will. Our culture desensitizes us to the Truth. God’s law is eternal and universal. It is quite sad that so many no longer recognize how our actions offend God and separate us from his grace.

It is good to learn more about God’s law.

That depends entirely upon what it is you are doing.

Most people think they are never sinning, those who suffer from the mental condition of scrupulosity think they are always sinning, and the truth of it is somewhere in the middle. We are desensitized to sin, we rationalize sin, we ignore our conscience, we fail to form our conscience. That is all on us. The Church is there to help us find the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

A healthy conscience is formed by prayer, frequenting the Sacraments, studying the Church’s teaching.

Making lists of sins, or not sins, isn’t what the Church does and neither should we. The Church gives us the principles behind each Commandment, examples of grave matter via the Catechism, and gives us many documents and homilies to help us form our conscience properly so we can evaluate our individual circumstance and apply the moral law.

Many people who post here suffer from scruplosity and they seek relief for a very real mental problems here. They are **unable **to gauge the reality of what is sin and what isn’t due to their mental illness. We must pray for them, this is a terrible burden.

Here are some “not-sins”:

  1. Using your good faith and conscience to guide someone in a decision with the best intentions and knowledge;

  2. Understanding that you are human and prone to make mistakes, and we’re not perfect;

  3. Asking for forgiveness;

  4. Loving each other in the spirit of Christ;

  5. Having genuine, thoughtful questions about topics because you truly have the desire to know and learn;

  6. Using faith, reason, and intellect;

  7. Realizing that others aren’t perfect and to not begrudge them for it;

  8. Praying for others because you genuinely and honestly want to;

  9. Understanding where your place is in life and your unique plan, and it’s okay to be different from others;

  10. And making sure you walk the talk…even if others don’t like it.

AngryAtheist, I assume the above comment is sarcastic. I find it extremely funny! :smiley: However, you are wrong, of course. About the list being shorter, I mean. Baptism takes care of our “sin of existence”. :thumbsup:

I know that’s how it seems like, and that’s how it is in many protestant religions. A lot of protestants believe that as long as you believe in Jesus, you are saved, and if you don’t, you’re going to Hell. The Catholic Church doesn’t see it that way (or at least, that isn’t how I’ve been taught, although some people on this forum seem to insinuate as much). God knows what is in our hearts and what our intentions are, and “worshiping God” can pretty much be as simple as just being a good, genuine, pure hearted person, it doesn’t necessarily mean you must know or believe in God. Many people were brought up in cultures where they were never taught about God, and that most certainly doesn’t mean they’re all going to hell!

I’m sorry you’ve had such a negative experience with Christianity and specifically with Catholicism. With the exception of some pretty crazy things I’ve seen on this forum, I’ve had a very very good and enriching experience in my faith.

As for the OP, I know exactly what you mean. I’ve been a devout Catholic for my whole life, and even I’VE never seen Catholics obsess over sin the way they do on this forum. It really took me by surprise. Just know that this is NOT a representation of most Catholics out there, or of the Catholic Church Itself. There are A LOT of extremists and scrupulous people on this forum.

Rule of thumb: If you like doing it, it is probably a sin. :stuck_out_tongue:

I like treating others with the same if not better respect than I’d like to receive, and being a nice person…is that sin?:shrug:

I hope none of us like posting here on CAF!

Ease up, Folks. It was a joke.

That’s why I put the :stuck_out_tongue: at the end.


Original Sin.
Yet another thing I just don’t believe in.

How is that?

Just because you don’t believe in something doesn’t mean it isn’t so.

Original sin simply means we have the tendency to sin… and we will. The whole Adam and Eve story is symbolic.

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