Monday, December 4, 2023

Comprehension Passage - 2

Title: Bad temper - The vice of the virtuous

The next ingredient is a very remarkable one: Good Temper. "Love is not easily provoked". Nothing could be more striking than to find this here. We are inclined to look upon bad temper as a very harmless weakness. We speak of it as a mere infirmity of nature, a family failing, a matter of temperament, not a thing to take into a very serious account in estimating a man's character.

And yet here, right in the heart of this analysis of love, it finds a place; and the Bible again and again returns to condemn it as one of the most destructive elements in human nature. The peculiarity of ill temper is that it is the vice of the virtuous. It is often the one blot on an otherwise noble character. You know men who are all but perfect, and women who could be entirely perfect but for an easily ruffled, quick tempered or touchy disposition. This compatibility of ill temper with high moral character is one of the strangest and saddest problems of ethics.

 The truth is there are two great classes of sins - sins of the Body,  and sins of Disposition.  The Prodigal son may be taken as a type of the first, the Elder brother of the second. Now society has no doubt whatever as to which of these is worse.  Its brand falls, without a challenge, upon the Prodigal. But are we right? We have no balance to weigh one another’s sins, and coarser and finer are but human words; but faults in the higher nature may be less venial than those in the lower, and to the eye of Him who is Love, a sin against Love may seem a hundred times more base. No form of vice, not worldliness, not greed of gold, not drunkenness itself does more to un-christianise society than evil temper. 

For embittering life, for breaking up communities, for destroying the most sacred relationships, for devastating homes, for withering up men and women, for taking the bloom off childhood; in short for sheer gratuitous misery-producing power, this influence stands alone. 

Jealousy, anger, pride, uncharity, self-righteousness, touchiness, doggedness, sullenness - in varying proportions these are the ingredients of all ill-temper. Judge if such sins of disposition are not worse to live in, and for others to live with than sins of the body. There is really no place in Heaven for a disposition like this. A man with such a mood could only make Heaven miserable for the all the people in it.

                                                                                                    Henry Drummond


1. What is the popular notion about 'bad temper'?

Answer -  According to the author, bad temper is considered as a harmless weakness and is spoken merely as if it is a mere infirmity of nature, a family failing or as a matter of temperament. 

2. How is bad temper 'the vice of the virtuous'?

Answer - Bad temper is one blot on an otherwise noble character. Men and women could be entirely perfect except for a ill-tempered disposition. Hence bad temper is referred as the vice of the virtuous.

3. Which class of sins is the worse and why - sins of the body or the sins of the disposition?

Answer - Sins of the disposition are worse than the sins of the body because evil temper un-Christianise the society more than the bodily sins. 

4. Mention some evils of bad temper?

Answer - Evil temper can embitter life, break up communities, destroy most scared relationships, devastate homes, wither up men and women, for taking the bloom off childhood. 

5. Why, according to the author, will there be no place in Heaven for bad-tempered folks?

Answer - According to the author, there will be no place in Heaven for bad-tempered folks because people with evil-temper can only make heaven a miserable place for all the people in it. 

6. Who is the author of this passage?

Answer - Henry Drummond.

7. What could be the title for this comprehension passage?

Answer - Bad temper - The vice of the virtuous. 

8. Name any three ingredients of ill temper?

Answer - Jealousy, anger and cruelty.

9. What is the nearest meaning for the word 'ruining' in the passage?

Answer - Devastating.

10. Find words from the passage which mean : breaking up, ruining, scandalising, souring, easily or quickly offended.

Answer - 1. breaking up: destroying.

               2. ruining: devastating.

               3. scandalising: withering.

               4. souring: embittering.

               5. easily or quickly offended: touchy.

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