Sloth, the opposite of love and joy

The concept of sloth is useful for thinking, in terms both agrarian and theological, about a style of life and work that is pursued without regard for the enduring health of community and place.  Sloth is a deadly sin, because it is opposed to love.  (Significantly, in Aquinas’s theological vocabulary the antonyms for acedia are caritas, “love,” and gaudium, “joy.”)  Sloth may disguise itself as :conscientious work” and meet with various forms of public approval or success.  But work that is not motivated by love for the life of the community, beyond the temporal and spatial confines of one’s own small life, cannot free either worker or community from profound anxiety (“care”).

Scripture, Culture, and Agriculture, Davis, pg 142

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