Tuesday, 30 August 2011

ABC Wednesday, G for GREED and GLUTTONY



The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things is a painting attributed to Hieronymus Bosch, completed around 1500 or later.

 
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Greed and Gluttony.
When a friend of mine became a widow more than a decade ago, she was really devastated. Not only had she lost her partner and best friend, her mate to whom she had been married for 36 years, but she had to handle financial situations, such as making her tax declaration, managing bank accounts, and selling all her husband's shares, for she didn't want to lose money on shares. She didn't know anything about them. Then a friend of hers asked her, if her son-in law was allowed to do her bookkeeping, because her daughter and son-in-law were in rather needy circumstances. The widow was delighted! Of course! Now she got the help and advice she needed of somebody she knew well. The bookkeeper and his wife were friends of the widow. He helped her repair things in her house, all kind of things her husband and children used to do. After some time the bookkeeper asked something in return. Would she be so kind as to lend him some money? He wanted to buy a property for his wife in order to insure her of a regular income, when he had died. He was more than 20 years older than she was and not in good health. Of course the widow lent him a large amount of money. And the grateful bookkeeper did more odd jobs in the house. Later on he asked for another loan. In the beginning he paid the interest and repayment of the two mortgages, but after a while he stopped paying the repayment of one of the mortgages. He now was in full control of her bank account. She didn't know how much she owned as the bank didn't send bank statements any more, for he did internet banking. He promised her to copy the statements, and so he did twice. He remained kind and helpful and the widow trusted the bookkeeper without any doubt. Years later it was found out that he had embezzled a very large amount of money for his own good. This was a real eye opener. And the widow found herself a good lawyer and summoned the bookkeeper to appear in court.

Greed is an excessive desire to possess wealth or goods with the intention to keep it for one's self. Greed - like lust and gluttony - is a sin of excess. Greed is inappropriate expectation. However, greed is applied to a very excessive or rapacious desire and pursuit of wealth, status, and power.

As a secular psychological concept, greed is an inordinate desire to acquire or possess more than one needs or deserves, especially with respect to material wealth.

Gluttony, derived from the Latin gluttire meaning to gulp down or swallow, means over-indulgence and over-consumption of food, drink, intoxicants or wealth items to the point of waste. In some Christian denominations, it is considered one of the seven deadly sins—a misplaced desire of food or its withholding from the needy.


With thanks to Denise Nesbitt, who created ABC.We started round 9 of the fascinating meme of ABC. For more interesting ABC posts click on the logo in the sidebar or Here. This week we are looking for words beginning with G.

30 comments:

Arija said...

My dear Wil, both these sins are unfortunately all too alive and well in the world today. There are far too many people with unimaginable wealth and power and we just need to look around and see how many people are grossly overweight. A very timely post indeed.

Roger Owen Green said...

one needs legal contracts, even with relatives, maybe especially with relatives, when it comes to money.


ROG. ABC Wednesday team

Arkansas Patti said...

What a very sad tale. To take advantage someone who was only trying to help him is sickening. I am glad he was prosecuted, though that would not get her money back. I do hope she was not left destitute.
There is not a pretty face on our society these days.

Shooting Parrots said...

A timely reminder that not everyone who appears to be a friend is to be trusted, especially when temptation is put in their path.

I hope your friend was able to recover her money.

Gigi Ann said...

Very well put Reader Wil. I can't think of anything to add.

Hildred and Charles said...

Yes, a sad tale, - and a lesson to innocents who would perhaps not suspect a friend of greed and deceit.

photowannabe said...

A sad story of greed.
The desire for more Money seems to destroy many relationships.
Fascinating post that comes close to home for some of our relatives.

Kay L. Davies said...

Unfortunately, "good lawyers" can be gluttonous, too, but I hope the widow got some satisfaction.
And I hope you are doing well, my friend.
— K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

George said...

Thanks for a very thoughtful post. The story of the widow is sad, but it does illustrate grief and gluttony very well.

EG Wow said...

Such a sad tale! I hope your friend was able to recover her money!

Joyful said...

It saddens me every time I heard about someone's greed and covetousness of someone else's property. I am especially appalled when that greed takes advantage of the vulnerable in our society. Seems to be a problem the world over.

Miss_Yves said...

Un conte, toujours actuel, malheureusement .
Les illustrations sur l'avidité et le gourmandise sont plaisantes ( Bosch ou Brueghel ?)

Jane and Chris said...

Oh, such a sad and serious post.
Jane x

Wanda said...

There are way too many stories like the one you have shared...some I know of personally and it breaks my heart to see the elderly or heartbroken taken advantage of...Greed...Gluttony...both cause pain, pain, pain!!!!

If those greedy folks don't get justice in this life....it will come!!!!

chubskulit said...

Capital sin, those two are always together.

G is for Gorgeous Gladiola

Jedediah said...

I love that painting, Bosch in general. There are always so many details.
I think that greed is at the root for many sins and/or crimes, along with treating humans like things.

Tumblewords: said...

There seems to be a glut of greed and gluttony in the world today. Timely post -

Carver said...

What a great post. That is so awful what happened to the woman. Especially bad when it's family you trust.

Leslie: said...

I think this sort of thing happens more often than we want to admit. It's so important to have legal advice when allowing anyone else to deal with your financial matters. Think twice before allowing even your children, or may especially your children handle your affairs. Great post, Wil and have a great week,

Leslie
abcw team

SandyCarlson said...

Thanks for sharing these thoughts. Thanks for this post.

Paula Scott said...

Oh, where have I seen this before? Only once before though. It is fascinating, isn't it-but in a disappointing kind of way. Too much greed. Too much gluttony. There are many 'tools' in the toolbox of the prince of darkness. Our job is to be aware and avoid.

Marja said...

Great story I think greed is at the roots of many evil in the world today

Rajesh said...

Wonderful post on the deadly sins.

Carol@The Writers Porch said...

Dear Wil....this was a wonderful post about a horrible subject. I myself seem to be thrusts into blogging about judgement and jealousy as of late. Must be something in the air, or perhaps God is using our fingers to bring attention to these sins? XO

Patty said...

I can only hope that bookkeeper has to repay everything he took and with interest. So sad someone would do something like that to another person.

RuneE said...

As of these days and age, you could hardly have found a better theme. Money and power goes hand in hand, with gluttony as a companion.

PS Thank you for pleasant comments!

Vicki Lane said...

Both greed and gluttony seem to be all too human sins.

Meryl Jaffe, PhD said...

I love Bosch.

What a sad, sad story. Greed is such a horrible vice too. We don't even need that story to remind us. Look at the US banking / mortgage situations. Look everywhere...pretty depressing. Sorry...

jeannette said...

What a horrible story, Wil!
Jeroen Bosch has painted some very intriguing subjects!

Dhemz said...

I like this composition...very nice! late visit....:)