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42 Quotes from books about the Seven Deadly Sins

According to Christian tradition, there are seven deadly sins. They are: envy, gluttony, greed, lust, pride, sloth, and wrath.

These 42 quotes from books explore each one of the deadly sins.

ENVY

1. “Anger, resentment and jealousy doesn’t change the heart of others– it only changes yours.”
Shannon Alder, 300 Questions to Ask Your Parents Before It’s Too Late

2. “Your jealousy will last longer than the joy of those you are jealous of.”
Amit Kalantri, Wealth of Words

3. “Envy is the religion of the mediocre. It comforts them, it soothes their worries, and finally it rots their souls, allowing them to justify their meanness and their greed until they believe these to be virtues. Such people are convinced that the doors of heaven will be opened only to poor wretches like themselves who go through life without leaving any trace but their threadbare attempts to belittle others and to exclude – and destroy if possible – those who, by the simple fact of their existence, show up their own poorness of spirit, mind, and guts. Blessed be the one at whom the fools bark, because his soul will never belong to them.”
Carlos Ruiz Zafón, The Angel’s Game

4. “To feel envy is human, to savour schadenfreude is devilish.”
Arthur Schopenhauer, On Human Nature

5. “Those people, who hate you, envy your freedom.”
Santosh Kalwar, Quote Me Everyday

6. “They’ll either want to kill you, kiss you, or be you.”
Suzanne Collins, Mockingjay

DS1

GLUTTONY

7. “The glutton lives to eat instead of eating to live.”
Vincent Okay Nwachukwu, Weighty ‘n’ Worthy African Proverbs – Volume 1

8. “Do you think it is a vain hope that one day man will find joy in noble deeds of light and mercy, rather than in the coarse pleasures he indulges in today — gluttony, fornication, ostentation, boasting, and envious vying with his neighbor? I am certain this is not a vain hope and that the day will come soon.”
Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

9. “But your laziness leads you astray;
your greed makes you dumb;
your gluttony makes enemies for you.”
Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, Volume I: The Old and Middle Kingdoms

10. “Our plump predicament comes from the way we think. In America life has
become a daily quest for instant gratification. Do we think about the long term? Rarely. We ask ourselves, “What sounds good?” That’s where we get into trouble focusing on what we want rather than what we need. Then we invent new ways to satisfy ourselves.”
Aaron Blaylock, It’s Called Helping…You’re Welcome

11. “Nothing helps gluttony along so well as eating food you don’t have to pay for yourself.”
Margaret Atwood, The Penelopiad

12. “Curiosity is gluttony. To see is to devour.”
Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

DS2

GREED

13. “There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom, blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

14. “If it weren’t for greed, intolerance, hate, passion and murder, you would have no works of art, no great buildings, no medical science, no Mozart, no Van Gough, no Muppets and no Louis Armstrong.”
Jasper Fforde, The Big Over Easy

15. “Beyond all explanations which a good brain can give, why do we choose the worse and not the better, why hate rather than love, why greed and not generosity, why self-centred activity and not open total action? Why be mean when there are soaring mountains and flashing streams? Why jealousy and not love? Why?”
Jiddu Krishnamurti, Krishnamurtis Notebook

16. “It was not curiosity that killed the goose who laid the golden egg, but an insatiable greed that devoured common sense.”
E.A. Bucchianeri, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly

17. “What good is honour when greed eats away at its foundations?”
Alexandra Bracken, Passenger

18. “What is infinite? The universe and the greed of men.”
Leigh Bardugo, Shadow and Bone

DS3

LUST

19. “The thing I never understood about love is that it can’t be quelled, like lust can. With love, if you follow its call, if you give in to it, it just gets worse. The more you have, the deeper you go, the more you need.”
Emily Maguire, Taming the Beast

20. “The young habitually mistake lust for love, they’re infested with idealism of all kinds.”
― Margaret Atwood, The Blind Assassin

21. “I was completely and irrevocably in lust; which tends to make a person impassive to others’ pain. Love makes us compassionate. Lust makes us deaf to all but the lover.”
Mandy Nachampassack-Maloney, Asha in Time

22. “Lust is the craving for salt of a man who is dying of thirst.”
Frederick Buechner, Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC

23. “But, though I was very much in lust with him, I knew from the start we were nothing like ‘forever.’ Maybe because forever is such a scary place.”
Ellen Hopkins, Burned

24. “There is lust and then there is love. They are related, but still very different things. To indulge in one requires little but honeyed speech and a change of clothes; to obtain the other, by contrast, a man must give up his rib. In return, his woman will undo the sin of Eve, and bring him back into Paradise.”
Anne Fortier, Juliet

DS4

PRIDE

25. “A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you.”
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

26. “Yes, vanity is a weakness indeed. But pride – where there is a real superiority of mind, pride will be always under good regulation.”
Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

27. “Pride had kept her running when love had betrayed her.”
Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Kiss an Angel

28. “Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man… It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest. Once the element of competition is gone, pride is gone.”
― C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

29. “Rowan considered for a moment, and then said, ‘I have known many kings in my life, Dorian Havilliard. And it was a rare man indeed who asked for help when he needed it, who would put aside pride.”
Sarah J. Maas, Empire of Storms

30. “Pride is holding your head up when everyone around you has theirs bowed. Courage is what makes you do it.”
Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

DS5

SLOTH

31. “Stuff your eyes with wonder,” he said, “live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away. To hell with that,” he said, “shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass.
Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

32. “The trouble with psychics is that they convince you that you get this future no matter what you do. It is as though you can cheat the universe out of your experiences, that you need only tweak something here or there to live happily ever after. It allows for spiritual sloth in the certainty of providence.”
Thomm Quackenbush, Pagan Standard Times: Essays on the Craft

33. “You know, sloth is a sin,” he says softly.
“I prefer to think of it as an adorable animal.”
Ella James, Sloth

34. “A good work ethic is not so much a concern for hard work but rather one for responsibility. There have been a great many men and women who have in fact used work or hustle or selfish ambition as an escape from real responsibility, an escape from purpose. In matters such as these, the hard worker is just as dysfunctional as the sloth.”
Criss Jami, Healology

35. “Hard grind got us the glory, the saying goes—but sloth will slide us back into the sea. And these days, the rising waters feel so near.”
Jessie Burton, The Miniaturist

36. “No degree of prosperity can be sufficient to eliminate all misfortune, and sloth is impervious to opportunity.”
Dean Koontz, Forever Odd

DS6

WRATH

37. “Angry people are not always wise.”
― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

38. “Anger is just anger. It isn’t good. It isn’t bad. It just is. What you do with it is what matters. It’s like anything else. You can use it to build or to destroy. You just have to make the choice.”
“Constructive anger,” the demon said, her voice dripping sarcasm.
“Also known as passion,” I said quietly. “Passion has overthrown tyrants and freed prisoners and slaves. Passion has brought justice where there was savagery. Passion has created freedom where there was nothing but fear. Passion has helped souls rise from the ashes of their horrible lives and build something better, stronger, more beautiful.”
Jim Butcher, White Night

39. “Most hatred is based on fear, one way or another. Yeah. I wrapped myself in anger, with a dash of hate, and at the bottom of it all was an icy center of pure terror.”
Laurell K. Hamilton, Guilty Pleasures

40. “Learn this from me. Holding anger is a poison. It eats you from inside. We think that hating is a weapon that attacks the person who harmed us. But hatred is a curved blade. And the harm we do, we do to ourselves.”
Mitch Albom, The Five People You Meet in Heaven

41. “If you try to get rid of fear and anger without knowing their meaning, they will grow stronger and return.”
― Deepak Chopra, The Third Jesus: The Christ We Cannot Ignore

42. “A heart filled with anger has no room for love.”
― Joan Lunden, Wake-Up Calls: Making The Most Out Of Every Day

DS7

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