Hatred and the misconception of “charity”
Those reading conservative Catholic blogs are surely already fed up with the sugary concept of “chariteeee” promoted by liberals who consider orthodox Christians people full of hatred. Let me explain why they are both right.
First of all, some definitions: the Catholic Encyclopedia defines hatred as
a vehement aversion entertained by one person for another, or for something more or less identified with that other.
This is rather easy. It becomes more interesting when you read that hatred comes in two forms:
One (odium abominationis, or loathing) is that in which the intense dislike is concentrated primarily on the qualities or attributes of a person, and only secondarily, and as it were derivatively, upon the person himself.
The second sort (odium inimicitiae, or hostility) aims directly at the person, indulges a propensity to see what is evil and unlovable in him, feels a fierce satisfaction at anything tending to his discredit, and is keenly desirous that his lot may be an unmixedly hard one, either in general or in this or that specified way.
Now this is already more intriguing as one can clearly see, in the first form, the hatred coming from the scandal, the blasphemy, the abomination, the sheer godlessness of a person. The Latin definition of the first hatred, “hatred of the abomination”, actually says it all.
Even more interesting it becomes when we read that:
The first-named species of hatred, in so far as it implies the reprobation of what is actually evil, is not a sin and may even represent a virtuous temper of soul. In other words, not only may I, but I even ought to, hate what is contrary to the moral law.
It is clear here that, provided one does not take the “hate of the abomination” as an excuse to hate the person, this kind of hatred is not only not a sin, but is virtuous. You are supposed to hate the person having particularly odious traits inasmuch as he has them. You hate so-and-so because he is a blasphemer and in so doing you are even being good.
This reinforces me in a suspicion that I always had: that those unable to feel hatred for what is seriously wrong either do not have any real feeling for what is wrong or want to be free to commit it without being, as they love to say, “judged”. Conversely, people like Mother Teresa and Padre Pio – extremely pious by any standard – were noted for their very keen hatred of abominations.
But it gets even more interesting.
One may without sin go so far in the detestation of wrongdoing as to wish that which for its perpetrator is a very well-defined evil, yet under another aspect is a much more signal good. For instance, it would be lawful to pray for the death of a perniciously active heresiarch with a view to putting a stop to his ravages among the Christian people.
This doesn’t need any commentary. We all have such people in mind.
We must hate heresy; we must hate willed and celebrated scandal; we must hate the undermining of Catholic values masked as Catholicism. It is not sinful if we do, actually the contrary is true. It is evil if we let it happen because we want to feel “tolerant” (that is: never uncomfortable and/or with all options open) and call our cowardice and love of a quiet living “chariteeeeee”.
In better times – when Doctrine was properly taught – people knew about the ways to be accessory to another person’s sin. “Consent ” and “silence” are two of them. This should give all those who are, say, in favour of abortion but feel fine because they haven’t aborted themselves, or are in favour of euthanasia but say they wouldn’t make use of it themselves, a lot to think about.