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7 Capital Sins Essay

christianity / Seven Deadly Sins / "Seven" / "Devil's advocate" / Dante

Essay Topic:

The revelation of the 7 capital sins in the movies “Seven” and “The Devil’s advocate”.

Essay Questions:

What do the Seven Deadly Sins mean for the Christianity?

What are Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth opposed to?

How does David Fincher’s “Seven” reveal Dante’s “Inferno”?

What are the sins depicted in the movie “Devil’s advocate”?

Thesis Statement:

The Seven Deadly Sins represent the opposition to the seven major virtues, which each person should possess from the point of view of Christianity. They are: Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth.

 

7 Capital Sins Essay

Introduction: The Seven Deadly Sins are the main base of the Christian religion. They are seven “golden rules” to be a decent person and a true Christian. The breakage of each of the “rules” will result in death in Hell. These 7 capital sins make a definite borderline between what is good and what is bad. The Seven Deadly Sins represent the opposition to the seven major virtues, which each person should possess from the point of view of Christianity. They are: Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth. They are accordingly opposed to the seven primary Virtues: Humility, Love, Faith, Self-Control, Kindness, Generosity and Zeal. These virtues become the evaluation patterns of being a good man, a man with faith in God and in the people around him. Pride deals with overestimating one’s value and achievements over the other people. Envy is connected with a strong drive to posses what other person has or to be like this person. Gluttony is an uncontrolled longing to food and other pleasures. Lust is a self-destructive desire fro sex, power and other bodies pleasures. Anger equals to irritation and fury, especially impatience towards the flaws of other people. Greed is a strong unwillingness to share the material good one has and Sloth is about not completing any spiritual or physical work.Each of these sins is being despised in the contemporary world and at the same time each of them is common and ordinary in this world. These seven sins have always caused a lot of arguments and a lot of works have been dedicated to this issue.

One of the brightest examples of such a work is David Fincher’s “Seven”. It is a story of a serial killer that makes each of the murderers a punishment for each of the seven “capital” sins. The sins shown in the film are related to the list of sins depicted in Dante's inferno. For Dante sins are always directed to destroy Love. Dante classifies all of the seven sins in three groups: perverted love, insufficient love and excessive love. Dante’s point of view in the list of sins provides a detailed description of the punishments for the seven deadly sins. The killer John Doe from “Seven” uses these punishments for each of the corresponding victims in the film. For instance, the punishment for Gluttony according to Dante’s Inferno is “lying in mud, besieged by snow, hail and filthy water”. In “Seven” Dante’s punishment can be observed when the police find a fat man with his face lying in old food and dirt everywhere. Dante sees these punishments as the logical result for being unjust towards other people, sinning, for reducing love in the world. The killer in the movie wants to stop the injustice: “"We see a deadly sin on almost every street corner, and in every home, literally. And we tolerate it. Not anymore”,-he declares. His murders appear to be the retribution for the sinners. The movie shows through the personage of Somerset, a detective, that the hope and the belief in virtue in the heart of people, especially experienced people, is almost gone. The sins are progressing so fast that even people who may seem innocent are guilty, too. A clear example can be observed through the death of Mill’s wife in “Seven”. The misdeeds of the contemporary society can hardly fit in the Circles of Hell that Dante introduced. . All of the seven capital sins are so common that it can undermine the faith in everything. Several sins are the most well spread among people nowadays: pride, the prototype of all the other sins, greed, gluttony and envy. People become proud of being who they are, wearing the clothes they are wearing, they do not share with the ones that are in need, they only struggle for more money and power with each other, forgetting to love and to give. The movie “Seven” does not only show the life of New York City with all its first and abjection, it also derides the “normalcy” of the occurring. It makes a definite parallel with the movie “The Devil’s advocate”.

Conclusion: Life of New York, both of them make an emphasis on the choices that people make. In “Seven” the main character Mills was a victim of Anger; in “Devil’s advocate” the main character Lomax was guilty of Pride and Greed. He wanted more money and got more recognition and could not stop when he needed to from the very beginning. Both of the movies make a stress on the laxity of the society. The main values are materialistic, not spiritual. People refuse to control themselves and take responsibility for their own actions. They envy, become furious and are ready to do anything to become famous and rich, they sacrifice the people whom they love for material goods and pleasures. Both of the movies reflect the frequency of sinning in the modern society and rise vital problems of moral and conscience. Their message is that it is necessary to maintain faith in mankind in order not to yield to temptation to sin. John Doe and Mills in “Seven” did not have the strength to believe in the mankind and virtue. Kevin Lomax in the “Devil’s advocate’ changed his mind when it was almost too late. Some of the Deadly Sins have become common, but in spite of this people need to keep being strong and kind, like Somerset in “Seven”. The call of the movie is to remind the humanity that Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth still remain “capital” sins and to show that the punishment will reach its destination sooner or later. Love and only Love will save all the people and revive them!

 

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