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How Many Virtues are There?

  • I think that the virtues are a very important subject. The many problems and evils in the world are like branches. When some are tackled and cut down they keep growing back in some form or another. Why? It is because the root is missed. The root of all the problems/evils is in the character of individuals.

    Many years ago I made some discoveries about the virtues and I wondered if the esoteric schools had this knowledge in their later degrees for example. 

    In my understanding we should not just accept the various lists of virtues around the world as having intrinsic logic and truth. Do they reveal the inner structure and nature of the virtues or are they little more than random lists? This needs vigorous investigation.

    Imagine if we were talking about the chemical elements. Would a scientist be satisfied with an incomplete or random list of the chemical elements? Would he be satisfied with saying that the number of substances are countless?Or that all is one energy in different patterns?

    Yes there is some truth in both views. However what if there was an intrinsic pattern within the chemical elements ie a periodic table for starters?

    In the same way we may say that there is only one virtue eg love or goodness. Or we may say that the virtues are merely countless and subjective.

    However what if there were an eternal pattern in the virtues,:a *periodic table* of a set number of elemental virtues from which all the constant variations arise via combination and permutation as compounds?

    If there where such a Pattern then we can either be completely ignorant of it, be partially aware of it (and so may have false beliefs about it) or we can have complete knowledge and awareness of it.

    It seems to me that the aim should be to study the virtues very deeply in order to increase our understanding of this important subject.

    So to ask the question: "how many virtues are there?" can be a starting point on a long and fulfilling road of discovery giving us tools to help heal our own character and help others to do so also.

    We need a healthy curiosity not satisfied with existing lists nor the idea that they are simply countless and subjective.

    All the virtues are within each of us so let us know ourselves.
    February 18, 2018 11:32 AM PST