ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Virtue? What Virtue?

Updated on September 6, 2010

We begin a weekly planning meeting that I attend by drawing a card from a deck of Virtues, reading it aloud, and using it as a way to focus ourselves for the meeting. Despite my disbelief in the power of cards to forecast the future, or, say, to provide us the guidance of angels, I have found the use of these Virtues Cards to be helpful and inspiring.

And serendipitous. Recently, as we slogged our way through budgets and bylaws, “unfun” agendas that challenged this idealistic group’s capacity for focus, we remembered that our virtue for the day was perseverance: the will to carry on.

Our organization has incorporated the Virtues Project ( into its teachings, and while I have yet to see the program’s benefits manifested obviously in the five year olds that are running around, I have witnessed many occasions on which the adults involved with the organization take a moment to acknowledge virtuous behavior in others. As in, “I acknowledge your perseverance in keeping us on track during this difficult discussion of the bylaws,” or “I acknowledge your purposefulness in setting a clear agenda for today.”

The virtues are not all as dry as perseverance and purposefulness sound. We can also practice the more luminous virtue of joyfulness, or creativity, or kindness. Contemplating joyfulness for several days recently not only helped me develop a deeper understanding of the concept, but also helped me begin to cultivate true joyfulness within me.

We invest a lot of our energy and time addressing the negative practices that we encounter in this world. Thinking about the positive ones is a welcome change. I found that it’s important, when studying a virtue (I would say, “new virtue,” but it would only be “new” for the day’s study) to focus on how I can best embody that virtue today, and to relinquish my tendency to focus on how I have not embodied the virtue previously, or less productive still, on how someone else has not done so. That is a different exercise, and may have it’s place, but it has not been the least bit helpful in my pursuit of a more virtuous life.

My relationships with others are, however, important to consider. In meditating upon a virtue, I can consider how we might improve or enhance our relationship and interactions with others through more virtuous behavior. Of course, I’m not using the archaic definition of “virtue” here, for while some of our relationships, (notably, our life partnerships) thrive within an environment of virtuous behavior, these relationships may be quite unsatisfying if the archaic “virtue” is left, um, intact.

Each of the Virtues Cards in my deck includes a description; a quotation from a notable scholar, author, or other source of wisdom; some affirmations; and some ways to practice the virtue in your daily life. I’m not very experienced with affirmations, other than the time I spent chuckling at Al Franken’s Stuart Smalley, and I feel kind of weird saying them out loud. Perhaps that will become more natural with time, and perhaps I’ll find that reading them silently will work, but heck, I’ll try it out loud for now.

The Virtues Card set I have is lovely, with beautiful photographs from nature, and it is a pleasure to look at, hold, and read. As a writer, these simple tools are tempting me to explore, shall we say, somewhat more noble topics than those I often ponder. I hope to post some of the results of my considerations, and I would welcome insight from other hubbers on good sources for the study of virtues. Unconventional sources would be especially helpful.

Just a dash of Stuart Smalley


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • clark farley profile image

      clark farley 

      7 years ago

      great idea, "I feel kind of weird saying them out loud" I know what you mean, however I believe that whenever we (as individuals) feel weird about something, without it coming directly from another person, we should consider the question, 'wso why should i be feeling weird about it?'

      So much of what we are, especially the stuff we would like to change, stays the same because a part of ourselves does not want to we feel weird or silly or 'hey-that-stuff-doesn't-work' and a whole bunch of other negative feelings that keep us from growing.

      Screw that...good luck (and don't tell everyone you know cause there will be some people who rreally want you to stay the same...)

    • LittleStash profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago

      Thank you! FYI, I picked my virtues reflection cards up at

    • toknowinfo profile image


      8 years ago

      Like the hub. Virtue cards seem like a nice idea to get inspiration and a sense of inner peace. I will try to find some sources from my network chiropractor, who has cards something like this in her office.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)