Tact is a virtue.  We all know through experience that being on the receiving end of tact and taking it well is also a virtue.  A hard virtue, in fact.

I don’t know what this virtue is called, but if I find my statue in heaven’s halls of heroes when I arrive, the inscription on the base will probably read “he bore tact.”

There is another example of reciprocal virtues in 1 Nephi 8 (and 1 Nephi 7). As Nephi tells it, Lehi is very blunt with his two oldest sons. He just says that they would not come to the tree in his dream and fears that they will be lost to salvation in life. This is reproof, and the ideal reciprocal virtue would be repentance.

Recognizing the reciprocal virtue is extremely helpful because your exercise of a virtue will be much more virtuous if you do it in a way to call forth and make easy its reciprocal. One should repent in a way that invites correction and reproof. One should reprove in a way that, as much as possible, invites repentance instead of resistance.

(By the way, it is telling that we don’t have a good virtue name for “reproof.” Reproof is itself a neutral term. Admonition maybe?)

There is another example of a reciprocal virtue in Paul’s teaching on wives submitting to their husbands and the Prophet Joseph’s teaching on righteous dominion.

Righteous dominion is that kind of presidency in the home that should be aimed at making submission easy. And a woman should submit in a way that makes righteous dominion easier. There is otherwise far too much tit for tat and trying to force the other into the proper role.

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