Cardinal virtues, Christian virtues

From Wikipedia:

In Christian tradition there are 4 cardinal virtues:

  • Prudence – able to judge between actions with regard to appropriate actions at a given time
  • Justice – proper moderation between self-interest and the rights and needs of others
  • Restraint or Temperance – practicing self-control, abstention, and moderation
  • Courage or Fortitude – forbearance, endurance, and ability to confront fear and uncertainty, or intimidation

In The Inferno these virtues, represented by the classical poet Virgil, are enough to make you a good person, just as Virgil can guide Dante to the Earthly Paradise at the top of Mount Purgatory. But they are not enough to gain Christian salvation. For that, you need the three Christian virtues: faith, hope, and charity (also translated as ‘love’) [from the New Testament of the Bible, I Corinthians 13].

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2 comments to Cardinal virtues, Christian virtues

  • Angel

    Why is it called cardinal virtues? Is it because you have to be a cardinal to truly understand them or is it because of another reason. What about Christian values, only peopel who are christian and go to the church can follow them?

    • Mr. MacKnight

      ‘Cardinal’ here means ‘fundamentally important’. And of course the three ‘Christian’ virtues—faith, hope, and love—are called that by Christians but have been practiced by millions of non-Christians all over the world.


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