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By John Zmirak, The Stream, February 17, 2023

John Zmirak is a senior editor at The Stream and author or co-author of ten books, including The Politically Incorrect Guide to Immigration and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Catholicism. He is co-author with Jason Jones of “God, Guns, & the Government.”

One of the greatest Christian writers of our time was novelist Walker Percy. A satirical masterpiece he wrote on the theme of finding meaning in modern life was Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book. That work inspired me when I wrote The Bad Catholic’s Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins. Specifically, I enjoyed his use of deceptively simple, harmless quizzes, of the kind found in pop magazines, to explore profound existential questions.

I finished each chapter in that book with such a quiz, allowing each reader to diagnose himself, and where he stood on the moral spectrum—which extends from a Deadly Sin at one end, to an equally deadly Neurosis (or moral overreaction) at the other. The goal, of course, was to find the Golden Mean in between, where true moral Virtues reside. For the quiz on Lust, see this excerpt online. …

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