Sins, virtues and claiming your creativity

Does claiming your creativity make you boastful?

Two summers ago I met a remarkable woman, the documentary producer of Pig Business, about how swine are ill-farmed. The doc shows how pigs are mistreated while they are raised, causing ill effects to the environment, the people who live close by the farm and ultimately, consumers. See Pig Business for video clip. She flatly refused the I Am Creative button used for World Creativity and Innovation Week April 15 – 21. Said she could never wear it, that she’s not creative. How come?  Is there a relationship between sin, virtue and creativity?

Français : Taolenn de François-Marie Balanant
Image via Wikipedia

Seven Deadly Sins and Seven Heavenly Virtues

Pope Gregory (AD 540) put forward the  Seven Deadly Sins as vices to avoid to live a good life: pride, envy, gluttony, lust, anger, greed, sloth. Seven Heavenly Virtues (humility, kindness, abstinence, chastity, patience, liberality, diligence) on the other hand, became popular in Europe during the Middle Ages as behaviours to use to avoid engaging in the vices. So, instead of acting envious, act with kindness, etc.

Is it possible people feel that owning or claiming their creativity opens  doors of temptation, and leads them astray?

  • Pride is an excessive belief in one’s own abilities. Humility is modest behaviour, giving respect, thinking of yourself less often than you think of others, and giving credit where credit is due.
  • Envy is wanting what others have, be it status, abilities, or possessions. Kindness means giving charity, having positive outlooks, and inspiring consideration in others.
  • Gluttony is the wish to eat or consume more than you need. Temperance is mindfulness of one’s surroundings, moderation between self-interest and public-interest and the rights and needs of others.
  • Lust is a powerful craving for such as sex, power and money. Chastity is clean living, being honest with oneself, family and friends, and achieving purity of thought through education.
  • Anger is the loss of rational self-control and the wish to harm others. Patience is endurance through moderation, forgiveness, creating a sense of peaceful stability and community.
  • Greed is the desire for material wealth or gain. Charity is generosity, self-sacrifice, unlimited loving kindness to others.
  • Sloth is laziness and the avoidance of work. Diligence is integrity, steadfastness in belief and having a decisive work ethic.

Without being able to ask her, it’s possible that documentary producer did not want the button because she preferred to stay humble and not be tempted by pride.

Does claiming your creativity make you boastful?