Way back during Lent, we had our annual Parish Mission. This year our presenter was Fr. Jonathan Morris, of FoxNews fame. He is very nice and quite unassuming. He gave three separate talks, one about sin. He posed that sin falls into three main categories. Pride, Vanity and Sensuality. I have been thinking about this on and off for the last few weeks.
Pride: Do I need to be right all the time? Is my way the only way to do something? Do I think I am better than others and lord it over them?
Vanity: This goes beyond the need or desire to look good. Do I avoid conflict or making decisions so I don’t look bad or cause others to get annoyed with me? Do I desire to be liked above all and allow that desire to interfere in my spiritual life or relationships?
Sensuality: Do I always want to be comfortable? Are my physical needs of the utmost importance? Do I overindulge in food, alcohol, or a good time instead of having control over my appetites? Am I lazy and undisciplined?
I used these as an examination of conscience before I went to confession. I think it is necessary to look at myself differently sometimes and this was a help to me. I am still not convinced that all sin falls into one of these three categories, but most seem to, at least for me.