People often call the seven deadly sins envy, lust, greed, wrath, sloth, gluttony, and pride. But you might not know that they don’t come from the Bible. In fact, they were made by a Greek monk named Evagrius Ponticus many, many years ago. Later, one of his students introduced them to the Christian church. The church, in turn, spread what we now think of as the traditional sins and the idea that committing one of these sins would kill a person’s soul.
7 Deadly Sins: What They Mean
Here, we’ll go into more depth about each of the seven deadly sins by looking at their meanings, origins, and examples in folklore, pop culture, and other stories.
What Does It Mean to Be Jealous?
Envy is when you want something that someone else has but you don’t. People often think of dogs and snakes when they think of envy, as well as the colour green. This is where the phrase “you’re so green with envy” comes from.
The story of Cain and Abel is one of the best-known stories about envy. In the story, one brother was loved and cared for, but the other brother was ignored. The brother who got left out got jealous of his other brother’s success and killed him.
| Symbols and Meanings of Lust
The sin of lust is when you are so full of wants that you can’t stop. People often associate the sin of lust with cows or snakes, and the colour blue is often linked to it because people are said to feel sad after they have lusted.
The theme of lust can be found almost anywhere. In fact, a character’s curiosity can often lead to lust. Some people see the forbidden fruit in the story of Adam and Eve in the Bible as a symbol of lust.
Greed: Symbols and What They Mean
The sin of greed is all about wanting what you don’t have, just like envy. The main difference, though, is that greedy people actually get those things, which is why greed is often linked to materialism and selfishness. The frog is the unofficial sign for greed. Most people think of greed as a yellow colour because it looks like gold.
Folk stories often talk about greed. You may remember the story of Rumpelstiltskin, in which a greedy king keeps the miller’s daughter locked up so he can keep getting more and more gold. Also, the Brothers Grimm wrote many stories about greed and how it affected people’s lives. In more modern stories, greed is also portrayed by characters like Scrooge McDuck and Mr. Burns from The Simpsons.
Wrath: Symbols and What They Mean
When anger gets out of hand, it turns into wrath, which is a strong feeling that can lead to violence. The bear is a sign of anger, and red is the colour that goes with it. Not surprisingly, the bear and the colour red are both signs of anger, aggression, and passion.
The Iliad by Homer is a great example of wrath in writing. Achilles’ anger causes terrible things to happen, and by the end of the story, he realises what he’s done and feels terrible regret. Achilles thought he was doing the right thing at the time, but he found out later how many people he hurt with his anger.
| Symbolism and Meaning of Sloth
People usually think of sloth as doing nothing, but it can also mean putting things off. That is, doing things that are bad for you on purpose instead of things that are good for you is seen as a sin by some Christians. You’d think that the animal that represents the sin of laziness would be, well, a sloth, right? In fact, it’s the goat. Also, light blue, which is the colour of daydreaming, is associated with sloth.
Lazy Heinz is a well-known folk tale by the Brothers Grimm about a boy who never wanted to do anything and, of course, never got anything done. Also, in pop culture, laziness is often shown as a trait that is not attractive.
Gluttony: Symbols and What They Mean
When you eat too much, you are guilty of the sin of gluttony. Gluttony can also mean having too many things or things that make you happy. The pig is the animal that most people think of when they think of gluttony. Orange is the colour of the sin. (It’s interesting that orange is often used in fast food restaurants because it’s thought to make you hungry, which could lead to overeating.)
In many fairy tales, like Jack and the Beanstalk, greed is a common theme. Remember the giant who was hungry? He stands for overeating. Hansel and Gretel is another story about people who eat too much. The kids in the story can’t stop eating a house made of candy. Of course, it turns out that the homeowner is a witch, and she wants to eat the kids to teach them that being greedy can have bad results.
| Symbols and Meanings of Pride
Pride is linked to having a big ego and a high opinion of yourself. People who have too much pride are often unable to understand themselves. The horse, the lion, and the peacock are all signs of pride. Also, the sin is symbolised by the colour purple, which has always been the colour of royalty.
One of the most famous Bible stories about pride is about the angel Lucifer, who was said to be too concerned with how beautiful he was. Some people think that his pride eventually made him evil and turned him into Satan.