5/2/14

The 5 Applied Virtues, The Foundation for a Modern Gentleman Part 3



The Applied Virtues (Faith, Defense, Loyalty, Generosity, and Creativity) are easily achieved if the Fundamental Virtues are properly understood. The execution of your core Virtues, your Foundation, as you applied them in everyday life.



Faith is the combination of Humility and Temperance, Defense is the combination of Justice and Fortitude, Loyalty is the combination of Humility and Fortitude, Generosity is the combination of Justice and Temperance, and Creativity is the combination of Humility and Aesthetics.


1.    Fidem


What do I live on? My faith in my ability that I’ll make it…Faith makes it possible to achieve that which man’s mind can conceive and believe.

Bruce Lee

Faith is confidence or trust in a person, thing, deity, or in the doctrines of an ideology, religious or otherwise. People tend to assume that faith and religion are one and the same, and that the followers of logic and science cannot have any faith. Nothing is further from the truth on both accounts. Many religious people are simply fanatics, having little actual faith, and many atheists are extremely faithful to their ideals. Faith is understanding there is a higher truth or ideal that you must aspire to, about believing in something greater than yourself.



Faith provides people a conviction to something and  a determination to achieve your goals within that faith’s framework. Faith is not about blindly following someone else’s rules, but about determining what is truly important for you. Only then can you draw strength from your faith.



The man with faith in self and a proper ideal can carry a lifetime of sacrifice and temptations. Always remember, your belief does not make you a better person, but your actions do. He will believe something greater that serves as a framework for his life and his actions. This will provide fortitude when he must stand and strength for when he must fight, and hope when he must live.

2.    Defensum


I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it.

Voltaire

Defense has been expanded into several concepts, from military to civilian and from sports to social. After striping it away of all the specifics and decoration, defense is simply to protect from an attack, a danger or an injury. In the way that Justice actively seeks peace and equality, defense seeks to guard from attack and inequality.


Based on the Latin word for Things Protected or Forbidden, defense seeks to provide a safe haven. It is not about agreeing with something or someone, but rather resisting the advances of an offender. In many cases, actually most, the offender will target people who they think are weaker, who they can easily submit or abuse. In a society of looking the other way and not getting involved, it is high time we do get involved. 


It is a Gentleman’s duty to protect and defend those that are not strong enough to defend themselves or those attacked by forces greater than what they could handle alone. In some cases, only by providing a proper defense and support, can the weaker be seen as equal.

3.    Fidelitas


I have a loyalty that runs in my bloodstream, when I lock into someone or something, you can't get me away from it because I commit that thoroughly. That's in friendship, that's a deal, that's a commitment. Don't give me paper - I can get the same lawyer who drew it up to break it. But if you shake my hand, that's for life.

Jerry Lewis

Loyalty is faithfulness or a devotion to a person, country, group, or cause. If Faith is trust, Loyalty is action. You might be faithful to your spiritual beliefs, but you are loyal to your religious organization, see the difference?


Originally meaning Loyalty, fidelity, legitimacy, honesty and good quality; Loyalty refers to an oath of fidelity, a promise to serve. Interestingly enough, loyalty is the basic principle from which all other virtues can be achieved. 


It has to be a willing, practical, and thorough devotion, a wholehearted commitment. Loyalty is actively engaged upon, not passively expressed merely as a strong feeling about something.

As a Gentleman, remember that your word is your bond, so never take it lightly.

4.    Generosus


Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present.

Albert Camus

Generosity is the habit of giving without expecting anything in return. This is not just about money, but it can be anything, from your time, your talents or even simply your support. Some people are blessed by having more than what they need while others are struggling just to get by with the hand fate dealt them. The intention behind generosity is to look out for the common good of everyone. It’s a reflection of your passion to help others. 


Generosity is derived from the Latin word meaning “of noble birth”. It was not till later than generosity began to refer to an open-handedness attitude and liberality in giving money and possessions to others. Interestingly enough, it is considered the antidote against greed in several religions. 


Unfortunately, a trend that has been popping up is the idea of doing acts of generosity and charity under the assumption that you will get paid back by God, fate, karma, or whatever other forces of the universe you personally believe in. The fact that you expect some reward from your deed negates the entire concept behind generosity.


A Man’s intent is to puts more into the world than he takes out. Something as simple as a decent tip for your waiter, buying a homeless person a meal, pay for a random stranger’s coffee, carry someone’s groceries to their car, or even volunteer your time to help out a charity. These actions, as small as they seem, grow past our personal reach. These good actions give strength to ourselves and inspire good actions in others, as generosity breeds generosity. Help others out, not so they can help you, but so they can help others.

5.    Creō


Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.

Scott Adams

Creativity is a phenomenon whereby something new and valuable is created. The ideas and concepts so conceived can then manifest themselves in any number of ways, but most often, they become something we can see, hear, smell, touch, or taste. It is the ability to reinterpret what we already know in a new way, to produce beauty out of the ordinary, and to create value out of nothing.

Creativity is actually a rather modern concept, originating from the Latin term “Creo”, to make. It’s modern meaning came during the Enlightenment and Renaissance. Before that, man did not create, he simply made what was already there, he simply discovered.  Even the ancient Greeks thought that man didn’t create art but actually imitated what was already there, or had a divine insight into the world. It was not till the renaissance that creativity was viewed, not as a conduit for the divine, but from the ability of Great Men.

It is when we understand that the creative process is based on learning from our mistakes, and we are able to appreciate beauty, does Creativity take form. Creativity is a trial and error process. We must be humble enough accept our mistakes, yet strong enough to challenge the way things are usually done.


As Gentlemen, we need not only to be strong but have to be extremely disciplined and is expected of us to protect the weak and defenseless. A Caballero should so be polite, honest, estimable, generous and illustrious equitable to all. As Luigi Pirandello said, anyone can be heroic from time to time, but a caballero is something you have to be all the time.