There are certain things that each of us can do personally to return to order.
Our core denunciation is that of a reckless spirit of frenetic intemperance which is constantly throwing our economy out of balance by seeking to be rid of restraints and gratify disordered passions. We have likened this spirit to that of a great never-ending party on a cruise ship, which leads us to spend and consume with reckless abandon.
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The first thing we must do is to observe where we have succumbed to frenetic intemperance in our own lives. It is up to each of us, for example, to see how we have engaged in the unbalanced consumerism, full of fads and fashions, which stir up the markets and batter down the barriers of restraint and self-control. Each of us might look at our own participation in the debt-driven frenzied economy that fuels frenetic intemperance.
We should ask ourselves in what ways we have allowed ourselves to be “massified” by mass media, mass advertising and mass markets by basing our consumption patterns and opinions on what we believe others think. We might also see how we have worship at the altar of speed with our rushed schedules and stress-filled lives.
To what extent has the frenzy of technological gadgetry entered and dominated our lives and thought processes? How have we adopted the materialistic lifestyle of our Hollywood culture with its denial of suffering and tragedy?
Our self-examination should also look at the harsh rule of money which promotes a way of looking at life where social, cultural and moral values are put aside. Each of us can see where we have judged the rule of money more important than family, community or religion. More concretely, we can ask ourselves to what extent we engage in those frenzied business practices fraught with vulnerability and risk.
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Our first task is to identify these and other areas where frenetic intemperance touches us personally and then have the courage to adjust our lives accordingly. We would do well to rid ourselves of those situations, investments, gadgets, and attitudes that favor frenetic intemperance in our personal lives.
To put it succinctly, we must identify those things that turn our lives into one big party, and then look for original ways to declare the party is over.