Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Lust in Translation

Pornography. What's the big deal? A healthy interest in pornography is exactly that, a healthy interest in sex and all things related. Right? I saw the most incredible commercial the other day, a deeply poignant commentary on our present state of affairs...

A man dressed in straight-leg dark wash jeans and a preppy sweater, head cocked to the side, checking out the centerfold of this month's playboy. He grins sheepishly, shaking his head from side to side and flipping between pages before finally folding the magazine closed and, looking up at the camera with a shrug and a sigh, intoning, "nope, still gay..."

Nice. That's what it's come to, then. A real man looks at porn. A straight man objectifies and idealizes anonymous faceless women, airbrushed beyond all recognition and safely removed from immediate personal experience by glossy magazine print. It's a lot to ask of a guy then, to settle for his good ol' 10 lbs overweight and 5'6" girl back at home, when he could spend an evening logging on or flipping open to a fantasy girl who fits all the specifications the media has programmed his mind and body to respond to.

The beauty of the human body is not celebrated by the practice of pornography; far from it. Nowhere else is the human person so degraded and disregarded perhaps, than in these images. The women who pose and who are used by the industry are certainly victims, but there are masculine souls being wounded in the process too. Perhaps more wounded. The lasting effect that pornography has on men leaves deep scars and ingrained memories, baggage that most guys are carrying into their relationships and eventually into their marriages.

Men are visually stimulated. It's a beautiful thing, considering the glory of the feminine form and the resultant pleasure that gazing upon the fairer sex can create for them. It's pleasure with a purpose though, designed to draw the viewer into a deeper awareness of the source of the beauty he beholds, who is ultimately God.

Pornography completely short-circuits the natural male-female reaction, arousing and demanding an almost instantaneous physical reaction to the opposite sex. There is no room for contemplation, no time for consideration or appreciation, and certainly no opportunity for deepening communication. It's wham, bam, thank you ma'am... and oh, by the way, it doesn't really matter whether or not you're even real.

What kind of ground can this possibly lay for meaningful, lasting relationships built on mutual self-respect and a deep appreciation for the unique otherness of the object of one's affections? Only the shakiest ground, fractured by unrealistic expectations and misguided notions of beauty and fulfillment. Real men don't love women because of what they can give to them, and real women don't seek to enslave men to an unhealthy appreciation for their physical appearance. No wonder we're so terrified of aging; if you can no longer turn him on, why on earth would he stay with you?

It's sick and it's sad, and it's killing our generation, retarding the spiritual development of millions and perpetuating a state of emotional infancy that impedes our ability to really ever grow up. People who use others for the immediate gratification of their pressing biological needs definitely have a place in our society, but it's generally between 1 and 15 months of age...

It's a wonder that, with one of the lowest birthrates in history, there seems to be an inordinately disproportionate number of children in the world today. We don't have many at first glance, but a more careful consideration can identify an unusually large number of them inhabiting dorm rooms and studio apartments the world over. Men are no longer growing to the full potential of their masculine person, but, rather, remain in a sort of pseudo-adolescent stupor, never quite able to overcome the impulse to act on pure impulse.


  1. "People who use others for the immediate gratification of their pressing biological needs definitely have a place in our society, but it's generally between 1 and 15 months of age..."

    I really enjoyed that line...great post. This really is a HUGE elephant in the room in our society; it's causing SO MUCH MORE damage than a billion other issues but we refuse to deal with it. Only something tied to feeding our culture's sex addiction could be tolerated. You see individuals with addictions who do and endure the most horrible things to get their fix...blow that up to a national level and you have America- the United Sates of Denial.

  2. yes, this is a very seious issue and one that cannot be present when you say your vows at the altar. many men are wounded by it, but like a post-abortive woman and like st. paul, God can bring greater good from the humility that comes from such forgiveness. Yes, those of us who have been in mortal sin KNOW that ours was the greater debt to be forgiven.

    While Jon and I were living in El Paso, we were very disturbed by how many adult stores there were, like over 15 in the area which seemed like a lot there, esp since El Paso prided itself on being a "family" place. So, before we moved out here in May, we spent some weeks preparing a mailing list and Jon wrote a 4-page letter to all of the porn shops/strip clubs and we sent it out just as we were moving! We did sign our real names and put a return address on there for our old house.
    Anyway....the funny part is one of the shops had closed --thank God---and the letter got forwarded to us in Ohio. The address on the envelope was "The Naked Harem," so I can only imagine what our mailman thinks of us and what the people who bought our house think of us! Yikes! That's was hard to take!! -blushing- Doh.

  3. This is a great blog. Keep it up. Thank you for the encouragement. I am a 22 year old male who has been struggling with pornography for 11 years. I have seen its evil effect on the young men of my generation and the insidious "dirtying effect" that it has on our minds. It infiltrates and permeates our subconscious until we cannot even look upon infants, children or the elderly without the arousal of a sexual thought. Despicable, dastardly, decrepit, depraved. And Satan revels in the death and decay of it all. But take heart! There is hope in God's grace because I have now been 90 days free of pornography. Prayer and reading the bible were invaluable to my battle with this addiction since the bible is God's Word summarized; imagine the potency of such a thing! The healing power of the bible is there and I encourage you all to read the New Testament once a year- it will radically change your life. It has done that much for me. Continue to pray because the prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective. God is amazing and He can break any bonds that keep us from experiencing His glory and the freedom and peace He wants for us. Be encouraged ladies. There are good men in this world that fight this terrible scourge and you women really are a wonderful gift from God. Pray for good men to come into your life. God really wants the best for you.



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