Monday, December 22, 2014

Cyprian on Materialism in 250CE

Those whom you consider rich add forests to forests. They exclude the poor from their neighborhoods and stretch out their fields far and wide into space without any limits. They possess immense heaps of silver and gold, as well as mighty sums of money. … Such a person enjoys no security either in his food or in his sleep. In the middle of the banquet he sighs, although he drinks from a jeweled goblet. …

He does not realize, poor wretch, that these things are merely gilded torments. He is held in bondage by his gold. He is the slave, not the master, of his luxury and wealth. … His possession amounts to this only; that he can keep others from possessing it. …

Whom He [God] has made rich, none will make poor. For, in fact, there can be no poverty to him whose breast has once been supplied with heavenly food. Ceilings enriched with gold, and houses adorned with mosaics of costly marble will seem crude to you now that you know that it is you yourself who are to be perfected instead. … Let us embellish this “house” with the colors of innocence; let us enlighten it with the light of justice.

No comments:

Post a Comment