How the seven deadly sins can be good for your health

Seven deadly sins

Whether or not you’re a religious sort, chances are you’ll have come across the seven deadly sins. According to Christian theology, these are the seven vices which are supposedly the path to further immorality: pride, lust, envy, gluttony, wrath, sloth and greed.

Of course, one man’s sin is another man’s natural human inclination.

Look at those seven vices through the right lens and they might not seem so terrible after all. In fact, they could even be good for you…


According to Christian theology, pride is the worst of all the seven deadly sins.

It’s wrapped up in arrogance and selfishness and acts as a gateway sin, leading you to lust, envy, and all the rest.

The idea was borne out by a recent literature review from the University of Missouri, which found that arrogance is on a spectrum.

It starts with individual arrogance, which is an inflated view of oneself, moves to comparative arrogance, where that inflated view fuels a feeling of superiority and ends at antagonistic arrogance when superiority leads people to treat others poorly.

However, a hint of pride could also be a good thing. After all, loving oneself is associated with feelings of confidence, self-worth, and assertiveness. Many people who lack those qualities would say it’s better to have them than not.

Indeed, a recent study from Queen’s University Belfast found that narcissism, or excessive pride in oneself, increased mental toughness, which helped to offset symptoms of depression. People who scored highly in tests for grandiose narcissism were also less stressed.

Dr Kostas Papageorgiou, from Queen’s School of Psychology, said: “This research really helps to explain variation in symptoms of depression in society. If a person is more mentally tough they are likely to embrace challenges head-on, rather than viewing them as a hurdle.

“While of course not all dimensions of narcissism are good, certain aspects can lead to positive outcomes.” Continue reading

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