Summary of text [comment] page 25
Sin is a sign of inner conscience and disposition. Signs reveal and veil. If one sees a sinful act, one cannot determine the perpetrator’s inner conscience and dispositions as a permanent, solid, thing.
[Both sin and virtue are actualities that emerge from conscience and dispositions. Since the conscience is composed of exclusive yet interpellating realms, sometimes it is hard to pin the specification down.
Well, Schoonenberg’s caution notwithstanding, there comes a time when habitual expression makes the specification clear. The training of the dispositions adds further evidence. Conscience becomes specified as “lacking” freedom or “free”.
How does this happen?
At some point, actuality binds the realm of possibility. When we habitually engage in sinful or virtuous behaviors, we come to a point where actuality specifies possibility. The “lacking” in consciencelacking and the “free” in consciencefree reflect how we train ourselves. We learn to ignore or hold onto freedom. We habituate our consciences to be “a slave to some concupiscence or cruelty” or to be “free and virtuous”.
Thus consciencespecified could also be written consciencehabituated.
The limitation of the extent of possibility by repetitive behaviors raises questions that are oddly addressed in the topic that Schoonenberg turned to next: What is the relation between “venial” and “mortal” sin?]