When you focus on the means, rather than the end, and get sidetracked into superfluities, what is the harm?
Father Dubay mentions that giving things away or up sounds bleak and negative. But once again, it's important to remember that by having things we are thereby losing other things. A list of the harms that can be done by indulgence.
- The mind is dulled. It focuses on more trivial outside details and can't so easily perceive the reality behind the appearance or appetite.
- A taste for prayer is lost.
- Our neighbor does not have his needs met.
- We lose a more stable happiness that is based on God rather than on us getting what we might happen to want or crave.
- We gain a host of inner disturbances.