De Profundis - Out of the Depths

"He that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption." Galatians 6:8

    No one can sin and get away with it. The results of sin are not only inescapable, they are extremely bitter. Sin may look like a harmless kitty but it eventually devours like a pitiless lion.

    The supposed glamour of sin receives wide coverage. We seldom hear the other side. Few leave behind a description of their downfall and subsequent misery.

    One of Ireland's most brilliant authors did. This man began to dabble in unnatural vice. One thing led to another until he became embroiled in lawsuits and finally landed in prison, where he wrote the following:

    "The gods had given me almost everything. I had genius, a distinguished name, high social position, brilliancy, intellectual daring: I made art a philosophy, and philosophy an art: I altered the minds of men and the colour of things: There was nothing I said or did that did not make people wonder ... I treated Art as the supreme reality, and life as a mere mode of fiction: I awoke the imagination of my century so that it created myth and legend around me: I summoned up all systems in a phrase, and all existence in an epigram.

    "Along with these things, I had things that were different. I let myself be lured into long spells of senseless and sensual ease. I amused myself with being a flaneur, a dandy, a man of fashion. I surrounded myself with the smaller natures and the meaner minds. I became the spendthrift of my own genius, and to waste an eternal youth gave me a curious joy. Tired of being on the heights I deliberately went to the depths in search for new sensations. What the paradox was to me in the sphere of thought, perversity became to me in the sphere of passion. Desire, at the end, was a malady, or a madness, or both. I grew careless of the lives of others. I took pleasure where it pleased me and passed on. I forgot that every little action of the common day makes or unmakes character, and that therefore what one has done in the secret chamber one has some day to cry aloud on the housetops... I ended in horrible disgrace."