While I am working on finding the novel that best explains the road to happiness in the next life (as the novel Atlas Shrugged best explains the road to happiness in this life), I thought it might be appropriate to spend some time on the Seven Deadly Sins.
These seven sins are the polar opposites of the four cardinal virtues needed to reach happiness in this life and the three theological virtues required to reach happiness in the next life.
The seven deadly sins are: greed, envy, sloth, gluttony, lust, pride, and wrath. A better understanding of these sins will help to illustrate the necessity of the virtues in achieving happiness.
For example, being greedy for money and riches and envious of the fortune of others makes it impossible to recognize the call to adventure, should it be sent. Focusing on what others have will mask the summons to begin the adventure. Sure, individuals can be greedy and envious and move forward to Gallery Three, but passage beyond Gallery Three will not be possible.
In addition, even if an individual is neither greedy not envious, the third deadly sin of sloth will ensure that the call to the adventure that is recognized is not accepted out of laziness or idleness. The individual will not have the courage to take action to move to the end of Gallery Four and begin the fight to secure the boon in Gallery Five.
In summary, the first three deadly sins of greed, envy, and sloth will make any passage beyond Gallery Three impossible: either Gallery Four is never entered or it is entered but soon abandoned for the security of Gallery Three.
More to come.