Doublethinking Lust I: Sex Ed

I fully intended to finish my 1/3 written post on Sunday School, but I don’t feel I’ve done due diligence on the topic of Christians celebrating deviant sex and relationships, and it is nagging at me.  As well, I want to tie in the lengthy conversation about Christians and “bad words” that occurred under the previous post, because it is of a piece with the issue of why so many Christian wives and daughters are so unprotected, undisciplined, indiscriminate, and too often feral.

As I re-read my posts one of the things I failed to do was clearly state my case. Here it is: The media we consume is by-and-large propaganda. It’s intended effect is to destroy authority and create women likely to act on sinful and thoughtless urges, because unregulated urges mean more sales. This dissolution is taught at least somewhere within most television shows, movies, books, and songs.

At the same time, this propaganda machine discourages fathers and husbands from exercising any meaningful authority, and discourages women from taking them seriously if they do. It does so by portraying disapproving fathers and husbands as unreasonable, mistaken, tyrannical, and heartless. Conversely, the only fathers and husbands who are uplifted are those who do not confront actions of rebellion or sin. Theirs is but to give hugs and understanding.

Encouragement of feral female licentiousness and discouragement of the discipline of modesty is omnipresent in the fiction of Western Civilization, and it’s also true of any journalism or editorial that touches on the subject of sex or romance. In effect it is a much more comprehensive sex ed concerned not only with which bit goes where, but how the producers of media believe men and women should relate, how families should be ordered (or not!), and how to make decisions on sexual matters.

Within these (deviously informal but extremely well-funded) sex ed seminars, there are also individual scenes of propaganda are targeted at a particular sex. In the past media was designed to appeal to as broad and general audience as possible, but as liberalism has progressed (and with the aid of technology and increasingly specialized labor) this is no longer necessary to accomplish their goals.

The go-to formula to get men in the theater is to make the protagonist violent. The violence of the protagonist is almost always perpetrated in protection of, or revenge for, some person or people, and the violence is committed against clearly-defined bad guys who–in addition to being generally dastardly–almost always initiate the violence first. There is at least a tenuous relation to the concepts of justice and defense of the weak. Revenge becomes a symbol for justice. (Granted: Somewhere further down the list of tropes to entice men is naked women.)

When media producers want to appeal to women they put the protagonist into a pornographic scene. This is usually fornication and adultery, but an emotional affairs[1] will do. Once in awhile sex and love between a husband and wife is depicted, but by-and-large the captivating moments aimed at women are illicit relationships. These pornographic scenes are intended to appeal to women along the same tenuous lines as the violent revenge and protection themes appeal to men. So, if revenge is meant as a symbol of justice, what ideal is pornography meant to symbolize?

Eros.

Unfortunately for Christians: Eros does not differentiate between good and evil sexual desires. It’s a pagan concept that has no place in the Christian worldview, yet we accept it reflexively because in our society it is the dominant frame of reference for love between a man and a woman. Consequently, deep confusions of the pagan and Biblical worldviews exists in the Church. We can’t articulate the difference between sex with a whore and sex with a wife. There are Christians leaders out there teaching that husbands should stop lusting after their wives, and other Christians teaching how to find a soul-mate; two actions that are fundamentally impossible if Christianity is true.

Now media can be churned out at a very high rate with cheaper and faster production; especially since they regurgitate [remake or adapt] the same films, shows, songs and books over and over. Each rumination is more granular, more targeted propaganda, than the last iteration of the cud. Family films skew chick flick. Adventures become shoot-em-ups. This in itself purposefully divides the audiences; driving fathers and husbands towards one theater, and wives and daughters towards another; segregated sex ed.

When we uncritically watch the propaganda we not only cannot differentiate between love and lust, but are confirmed in our decision not to. Against this, the argument is often put forth that these bits of propaganda are “just movies”, or “just songs”, or whatever; that we don’t really take them seriously, or even pay attention to them. But, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Depending on the source: 80-97% of American Christians engage in extra-marital sex. Those figures don’t account for french-kissing, fondling, or day-dreams. Does anyone seriously believe 80-97% of American Christians engage in revenge slayings? How many have even started a fist-fight; maybe 20%?

This is because we have a way to talk about justice, to teach it; to have a discipline about justice because it is common between Christianity and paganism…or at least translatable. There is no direct corollary in Christianity for the concept of Eros. The closest is lust, and we–especially women–are taught explicitly to avoid discipline when in pursuit of lust because Eros is explicitly about loss of control, and madness. We’re supposed to let Eros magically happen and simply enjoy the ride.

We kept on confusing pagan Eros and Christian romantic love until now we are at the point where we have realized Orwell’s doublethink about all things sexual; .

The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them… To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies – all this is indispensably necessary. Even in using the word doublethink it is necessary to exercise doublethink. For by using the word one admits that one is tampering with reality; by a fresh act of doublethink one erases this knowledge; and so on indefinitely, with the lie always one leap ahead of the truth.

It’s so pervasive in the culture, that if you eradicated every piece of media that endorsed Eros, there would be nothing left to entertain women but housekeeping shows. If you bring it up too many times they start to get the idea that you’re serious about closely watching what they watch. That might mean boredom, and them’s fightin’ words. More troubling: We like the way we feel “in love”. We like undisciplined nature. We like uncontrolled emotions. We’re “in love” with Eros.

And if you don’t think this describes you, then what is the Biblical corollary to “in love”?

[1]All Christians accept that sex outside of marriage is illicit, but not all Christians know that–outside of marriage–the expression of emotional romance is usually illicit, too. It is, and it shouldn’t be hard to figure out because these expressions are inherently sexual. In fact, I think it is true to say that we do know this, but we choose not to care because no one says anything, and we really like how it feels.

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14 thoughts on “Doublethinking Lust I: Sex Ed

  1. It is very true – just look at the rebellion sold to daughters in most Disney movies: Mulan – she is “not cut out for marriage” and disobedient. Aladdin – disobeys father. Little Mermaid – ditto. Only “Beauty and the Beast” breaks the disobedience mold, though even there the father is seen as bumbling.

  2. The rabbit hole goes much deeper than the media. No culture/society will tolerate media that is contra to their beliefs. That is the problem that the Manosphere experiences as it tries to break-out. The media reflects the culture, it does not define it. Although media can guide and influence culture that takes time and co-operation with other institutions of the culture like schools, religion, and politics.
    In Gen3:16 we learn that the woman is punished by painful childbirth and one other ‘control’. Her ‘desire'( desire 08669 // hqwvt // t@shuwqah // tesh-oo-kaw’ // in the original sense of stretching out after), yes, sexual desire, will be toward her ‘ husband’, or ‘man’, or ‘ any man’. but that the man will have ‘rule/dominion/power’ over her. Her ‘vagina tickles’ are a punishment, a curse; not the way woman was originally made. Jesus Christ became a curse for us that we may be free of the curse. Godly women can overcome their ‘vagina tickles’ and can teach their girls to overcome by;1) knowing the truth and 2) walking in the spirit in Christ. It is the only solution God offers. An ungodly solution would be the one Islam chose.

  3. @patrick

    Welcome.

    Only “Beauty and the Beast” breaks the disobedience mold, though even there the father is seen as bumbling.

    And absent. It’s fine to have a concerned father, as long as he’s not involved in any of her decisions, or her love life.

    @Bobbye

    No culture/society will tolerate media that is contra to their beliefs. That is the problem that the Manosphere experiences as it tries to break-out. The media reflects the culture, it does not define it. Although media can guide and influence culture that takes time and co-operation with other institutions of the culture like schools, religion, and politics.

    Exactly so. My equation to sex ed was not an accident.

    Her ‘vagina tickles’ are a punishment, a curse; not the way woman was originally made.

    The more I understand, the less I am inclined to believe that the curses were changes in our nature; rather than a release from God’s protection. It makes more sense that curses are not something done to us, but things not done for us. So, in the case of women I don’t think it’s that sexual appetite is a curse, but that removed from walking with God they are disordered.

    Jesus Christ became a curse for us that we may be free of the curse.

    I’m suggesting that the job of fathers and husbands is to do the same thing.

  4. So the serpent/devil was released from God’s protection? All of these punishments/curses are in the same context/time. What do you mean by ‘protection’? Do you imply ‘control’?

  5. @ Bobeye

    The rabbit hole goes much deeper than the media. No culture/society will tolerate media that is contra to their beliefs. That is the problem that the Manosphere experiences as it tries to break-out. The media reflects the culture, it does not define it. Although media can guide and influence culture that takes time and co-operation with other institutions of the culture like schools, religion, and politics.

    I sort of agree with you here. I do think that the media can move culture, but only to a limited degree. Perhaps the way to think of it is like this:

    Imagine society’s overall beliefs and values as points on a continuum, ranging from 1 to 10. Suppose that society starts at 5. A culture will not tolerate anything that is too far from this range. So a viewpoint that is a 2,or an 8, just is not accepted.But the media can push a view point of a 4, and that is close enough to 5 that society will tolerate it. Over time this influences society to the point where 4 is the standard. At which point 3 can be pushed. Then finally 2.

    This is what has been occurring in our culture for a long time now. We have slowly but surely been moving towards a more libertine/sinful set of values, and like the old (though inaccurate) frog in boiling water analogy, we haven’t really noticed it because it was so slow. Or maybe we did notice, but didn’t object because it was so slow, and because it was moving in a direction that our sinful human nature rather enjoyed.

    Marriage is the perfect example of this in action. Marriage starts out over a century ago a fairly solid institution, with very few cracks or ways out. Then over time the ways to break it increase. First comes more and more “fault” reasons to divorce. Then comes no-fault divorce. Then comes the move towards “same-sex” marriage. The next obvious boundary is polygamous marriage. After that should expect incest being fully recognized.

    @ Cane

    The more I understand, the less I am inclined to believe that the curses were changes in our nature; rather than a release from God’s protection.

    This makes sense to me. The Garden was a special place, where the presence of God was undeniable. Being removed from it would seem to correspond with a removal of some of that presence, presumably in the form of protection. Especially when you consider this in light of Adam’s punishment.

    I’m suggesting that the job of fathers and husbands is to do the same thing.

    Several verses in scripture suggest this, including Eph 5:25-28 and 1 Peter 3:7.

  6. @Bobbye

    So the serpent/devil was released from God’s protection?

    That’s a good question, and it depends on what the serpent is, and if God is actually talking to the serpent, or if the serpent is possessed. Some options:

    The serpent was a dragon; winged or could fly somehow–also, talk.
    The serpent was a snake, and Satan had possessed it. Is this the moment Satan is cast down to Earth?
    The serpent was Satan.

    I don’t have the answer.

    All of these punishments/curses are in the same context/time. What do you mean by ‘protection’? Do you imply ‘control’?

    Possibly control, but I think His presence would be sufficient. He does not abide evil. Just having Him nearby would have been extraordinarily beneficial.

    Generally, I don’t agree with the idea that things were “perfect” in Eden in the sense that we imagine perfect things to be; everybody acting exactly right; everything growing exactly right; etc. The Bible does not comprise a story primarily about good and evil, and right and wrong. It’s about love and hate, innocence and guilt, truth and lies, authority and rebellion.

    Trying to know good and evil is what got us into this mess.

  7. @Bobbye

    Romans 5:12

    12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: 13 (for until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. 15 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. 16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. 17 For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) 18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. 20 Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: 21 that as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

  8. “Generally, I don’t agree with the idea that things were “perfect” in Eden in the sense that we imagine perfect things to be; everybody acting exactly right; everything growing exactly right; etc. The Bible does not comprise a story primarily about good and evil, and right and wrong. It’s about love and hate, innocence and guilt, truth and lies, authority and rebellion.”

    Does this mean that you don’t accept a literal Garden of Eden, literal creation from nothing, ect.
    Do you believe that God had a plan from the beginning and is still moving that original plan to completion? Or do you believe God was blindsided in the Garden and is now on Plan B, or C, or D?

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  10. The media we consume is by-and-large propaganda. It’s intended effect is to destroy authority and create women likely to act on sinful and thoughtless urges, because unregulated urges mean more sales.
    –Cane Caldo

    Soap operas fit the profile.

    Your great-grandmother listened to ’em on the radio, the new-fangled media of her day. The propaganda has shaped females for generations and females have shaped the propaganda right back. Each iteration makes both the propaganda and the females more “sinful and thoughtless”.

    Save the family. Throw away your TV.

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