The virtue is not in not having defects, no; the true virtue is in knowing how to correct them, by the will, firmness and conviction of the fulfillment of duty.
How can many people speak of sacrifice if they do not understand it more than by taking away an infinitesimal part of their surplus to silence the screams of the hungry multitudes, who in desperation, are content with a splash of the liquids of pleasure in which the supremacists who produced nothing bathe?
Is it not an insult to speak of sacrifices where one lives only on appearances and where hypocrisy is the habit with which one wants to cover up human ills?
Isn't it sarcasm to be addicted to an institution where it is shouted that this and that is going to be done for the benefit of the poor and this and that is going to be distributed for the benefit of the humble classes? And from where did they receive the means that they are going to distribute and that will only represent perhaps and without perhaps, the one per thousand of what they received in donations from some well intentioned people, and others that with the same end that they give, so that their name appears as a benefactor of humanity?
And we talk about sacrifices! But what do men know about sacrifices? Sacrifice in each order of things represents much, both in the spiritual order, as well as in the material order; and if we refer to the spiritual order, it is all that represents abnegation, disinterest, love.
And in the material order? . . . It is the same case in different degrees; it is also, to put at the disposal of the brother, part of what we need as our means of life, of what is indispensable to us for the support of our visible self, for the progress and fulfillment of our intelligent self; and that he who truly wants to sacrifice himself for the good of his brother, yields part of what he needs for himself, but that in love he yields to his brother, because he puts his brother's misfortune before his own.
Blessed are those who do so much, but not by shouting, not by screaming, not by scandalizing, but by handing over to their brother, by ceding the contents of part of their goods, few or many, abundant or scarce, into the hands of that unhappy brother, whom Justice and destiny brought to that point, so that he might receive from a brother what he partly needed. That is why I have said, do not shout when you have to do a good deed; be as men who know and obey the law should be.
Blessed are those of the Father who carry gratitude in their hearts, for, my brethren, there is so much perversity in the human conscience!
Each one of you do the good he can, so that this benefit, this love, is received by you, and the divine justice will know how to recognize it as one of your best merits.
Let us see what difference there is between those who sacrifice everything to the general welfare and those who would like all the general good for themselves. Do you believe that they enjoy the good they possess? Do you believe that their egotism allows them to live in peace with their conscience?
Do you believe that they have the pleasure of savoring the exquisite delicacies, the satisfaction of luxury, and the hoarding of their wealth? Do not believe it, no; they do not leave it because they are insatiable; if they have ten, they want a thousand, if a thousand, a hundred thousand, and thus always in an ascending sense the ambition of their selfishness.
If they see a beautiful lady, they want her for themselves, because they are no longer satisfied with the one they possess; if their jewels are true, they are not satisfied, because they saw in so-and-so others of more value. And . . . why continue to paint the portrait of these unfortunate brothers, who sink more and more into the selfishness of their passions?
Now, I would ask, who enjoys the pleasures? If the rich man does not enjoy, or enjoys, material goods, because he does not make the proper use of such a possession, he cannot, as a spirit, receive the reward of his work, because he has not fulfilled the mission.
And if he did not enjoy it as a man, nor as a spirit, can there be a situation more sad and more anomalous than that of a being who, in no state of life, can satisfy the mandate of the law and stagnate before the infinite scale of wisdom?
Let this example serve, my brethren, for those who desire material goods, because they suppose that in these is the maximum of pleasure.
Be strong and firm in your resolutions, make a daily renewal of faith of works in your path and in the fulfillment of your duty. Think always, if you have fulfilled your duties as a man and as a spirit during the day, remember always with love all those who did not want to listen to the mandate of the law.
Always try to be among the first to act and the last to say. Keep in mind that words have no value if they are not accompanied by deeds; rather, they are a debt incurred by he who promises and did not fulfill his duty, because a duty is all that constitutes a voluntary promise.
Always remember that you must give an exact account of your actions, and that everything that is done against the law with knowledge of the facts constitutes an aggravation.