How the Internet makes me (slightly) more virtuous


I figure God let Al Gore invent the information superhighway for a reason. unbeknownst to our former V.P., God uses the world wide web to edify me and promote virtue within my life. And why not? The Bible says God works all things together for the good of those who love him, right? So without further ado, here’s the list of virtues and their new, Internet-inspired definitions.

 Charity. Not unfriending a friend simply because she ticked me off today by, say, posting yet another video of beloved Fluffy learning to use the potty. (Charity and the desire to avoid nausea does allow me for hiding her from my newsfeed, though.)

Chastity: Refusing to click on links to morally questionable websites, ordering from the Victoria’s Secret online catalogue, or reading material that promotes an unhealthy view of marriage and relationships. (Might I add, not putting my bra color as my status update to promote breast cancer awareness. Not exactly modest, ladies, and do you think the guys don’t realize “white” isn’t your favorite color? Gentlemen, please don’t start putting “boxers” or “briefs” as your status updates to raise prostate cancer awareness, okay? TMI.)

 Diligence: 1) Slogging through 3,000,000 hits to find out what information I really need to know. (See entry below.)

                           2) Continuing to blog even when I don’t want to. (Like today.)

Humility: Googling a subject I know well, and point twenty-four seconds later, realizing that those 3,000,000 hits contain an awful lot of information I DON’T know. Case in point is writing this post. How could I know that the list of “holy virtues” has changed over the course of time?

Kindness: Reading a dumb response to a Twitter post and not rolling my eyes and muttering, “How can you be so stupid?” Responding with words that aren’t demeaning or demoralizing.

Patience: Not screaming at a computer that has dial-up internet access. Not tearing out my hair or putting my fist through the computer screen, either. (But, oh, the temptation!)

Temperance: 1) Keeping Facebook time to a reasonable length by not playing the games or taking the quizzes or finding out which friend answered a question about me. (Do I want to know? What if one of my hundred-plus friends answered “no” to “Would Laura look good in a bikini?” That would tempt me to be quite uncharitable.)

                               2) Not checking email every five seconds, “just in case I’ve missed something.” (I probably haven’t unless you count those JC Penney’s ads I signed up for months ago and never read.)

In the words of my Sunday school teacher, here’s the “so what?” moment.

So what? How does this apply to your life? Have you found that the Internet helps you be more virtuous or does it bring out the worst in you?


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