If you’re not familiar with my term “CRAS” go here for an explanation.
Clothing demonstrates to others our character. What we do or do not wear projects our character to the world. As Christians we should strive to project Godly character with what we wear. We do not want to give a false impression of God’s people to the world. We should be humble but also project joy. We should dress according to occasion. Somber times (and corporate worship) call for somber dress and somber face. Joyful times, such as weddings, call for more joyous dress.
But what about nudity? In my quest to become more Biblical in my thinking and less influenced by culture, this topic has come to mind any time a discussion of “modesty” comes across my newsfeed.
What we wear can demonstrate to others our openness or reservedness. Nudity is to be fully open and exposed. Which is why people generally do not like it. People do not like to be vulnerable. Sins and scars can be hidden with clothing.
While nudity equalizes us and removes classes, every habit is demonstrated on the body. Abuse from self and from others is displayed. Such things are shameful and the desire to cover them is great.
Is simple nudity sinful? Some say lust and sexuality make nudity sinful. Some say the dress requirements given to the Old Testament temple priests prove nudity is sinful. However, I conclude that simple nudity is not a sinful state. Would God have created Adam and Eve in a sinful state? In spite of the unclothed state of man, God declared Creation “Very Good”.
Some say that certain passages in Leviticus 18 and 20 define nudity as sinful. However, it is clear from the context that “Uncovering the nakedness” is a condemnation of sexual immorality. Literal readings would mean we cannot change our children or bathe an elderly parent. We could not care for others in any way that might require exposing their bodies.
These passages do not condemn simple nudity, they condemn sexual acts among relatives or between non-married people. There is also a condemnation of rape found in these passages. “Exposing the nakedness” in this case is an aggressive act of embarrassment and objectification. In the story of Ham, the bible does not condemn Noah’s nudity, just Ham’s exposure of it. Noah cursed Ham’s son Canaan for drawing attention to his compromised situation.
Some say we should always wear clothing because it is symbolic of Christ’s covering of our sins. This was certainly true of the clothing God created for Adam and Eve. Is there reason to believe God’s clothing of Adam and Eve to be prescriptive to us? When He provided their skin coverings God could have outright declared nakedness to be sinful. However, He simply provided coverings to them as an act of mercy and as a protection to the new harshness of the fallen world. Nudity seems therefore to be acceptable morally in some if not many and most situations.
Some say that the command to “clothe the naked” implies that nudity is sinful. However, if we take this approach to other commands to care for others we would have to assume the state of poverty is sinful, being hungry is sinful, being imprisoned is sinful, being a stranger is sinful, being thirsty is sinful, and being sick is sinful. All of these states of being would be preposterous to declare sin, so why declare nudity sinful?
We clothe the naked as a protection against the elements and to make the person socially acceptable to the culture they reside in. We do not clothe them because we are making a statement that the body is inherently sinful. Because of this I do not think it’s a requirement that we should clothe cultures where nudity is normal. Indigenous people getting dressed after being converted show us less that nudity is sinful than that the culture that brought them the gospel is “superior” and they are showing respect and admiration for it. Many missionaries did not concern themselves with forcing clothing on the natives, even where they noted the nudity in their journals. The gospel was first and foremost on their minds. We should be more concerned with spreading the Gospel than in making sure people are clothed according to our cultural standards.
Some say that nudity is only appropriate in certain circumstances. They argue that nudity in the garden was only between spouses. I have a few problems with this position. The proponents of this must be reading into scripture an assumption that Adam and Eve would realize the sinfulness of exposing themselves to others outside of their marriage once they started procreation. This is patently absurd. God gave one rule in the Garden and it wasn’t “cover up when you start having kids.”
I suppose I cannot say they are accusing God of creating Adam and Eve in a state of sin, since these folks say nudity in marriage is not sinful, but the command to take dominion and procreate was given before clothing. This to me demonstrates that nudity would have been the state of man even after procreation. Had man not fallen, he would still be naked to this day. The only reason he might have gotten dressed was for protection from the elements outside the Garden. But that is speculation as well, and I’ve already condemned the speculations of others so I’ll move on.
While it may sound special and spiritual to claim that the sight of one’s body should be reserved for one’s spouse (and I do not condemn those who feel this way), I do not believe it is a Biblical mandate. If it was inherently sinful to expose ourselves to others besides our spouse, one would be sinning by showering and changing in a public locker room or by exposing ourself to the nurses and doctors at the hospital. There are no exceptions for sin. If we cannot find Scriptural support that says seeing or exposing our nudity is sin outside of marriage, there are certainly no verses excepting doctors, nurses, or old men at the gym.
We should reserve sex for our spouse, but the body is not itself sex. The body is a sin-scarred image of God, not inherently sinful in itself, but marred by one’s spiritual condition.
Does this mean we should all strip off and preach the Gospel in the nude (as Isiah did)? No. We should be offending others with the Gospel itself, not in our appearance. We should adhere to the dress norms of the culture we are reaching.
Does this mean we should have naked church services? One place perhaps that we could be safely naked would be church. But, clothing is symbolic, it does demonstrate a level of humility before our God that we should cover ourselves in His presence. Unless Scripture tells us to remove our clothing (like God telling Moses to remove his shoes) we should wear clothes to church. 1 Timothy 2:9-10 demonstrate that what one wears in church is important to demonstrate our holiness to the world around us. Again, we should be offending the pagans around us with the Gospel, not with our dress, if certain parts of the body offend the culture around us, we would be right to cover them up for the sake of our witness.
So when should we be naked? I do not think that’s the right question, it is not a matter of “should” it is simply a matter of “is it wrong, can I condemn someone as a sinner for doing it?” We cannot Biblically condemn nudity as a sin, but we should be careful in how we approach it. We should not violate our conscience or the conscience of those around us. We should not offend our culture with our bodies, but with the Gospel alone. We should be careful not to project a false image of ourselves, clothed or naked.
Can we go naked here, there, and everywhere? I don’t see why not. “Should” we? It depends.
Be careful what you wear or do not wear, it says a lot about you to the world around you.
Last week, I discussed the fact that porn is a drug and corrected some common misconceptions about it. This week I intend to give a couple of methods that I see as useful in preventing and fighting porn addiction.
I recommended last time that those who are hooked should stop right now, cold turkey. But while the behavior can be stopped immediately, I think it’s important to examine the root of this addiction and slavery to sexual sin. What makes so many men (and women) vulnerable?
Part of the allure is wiring. Illicit sex is a very enticing sin to many. We are wired with a strong need for intimacy and human touch, and sex is the strongest expression of both. We are often so needy of intimacy that we will settle for even the cheapest of imitations.
Sex is such a strong desire in our lives, many have over-focused on it and made sexual sin out to be the worst possible sin one can commit. While scripture certainly tells us that sexual sin is especially heinous to the point where one sins against his own body, it is certainly not the unpardonable sin. We need to extend grace to those who have genuinely repented of sexual sins.
It is an understatement to say that we live in a sex-saturated culture. While some of the discussion about sex are healthy and much preferable to the prudishness of previous generations, much if not most of what’s floating around out there is anything but helpful. Most of the sexual discussions out there do not promote healthy sexuality.
What is the root of this porn obsessed culture?
Within the church a large part of it is the “modesty culture.” This sub – culture of Christianity has placed undo sexual meaning to the word “modest” and has created an entire generation of sons who can’t even look around at the mall.
This group of people have so over obsessed with the sexual attractiveness of the female body that even breastfeeding is shameful and should be kept in bathrooms or in one’s own home.
Both the church and the secular culture at large have bought into the Freudian lie that sex is the most basic motivator for all human behavior. Our sexuality and sexual appetites define us now. It has become the biggest definer of our self-worth and self-image.
In the sex-obsessed world we live in it may seem impossible to prevent and kill porn addiction. How do I recommend we do it?
Short answer: we change our perspective of the human body and sex. Instead of adopting the culture’s pornographic view of the body and sex or the modern church’s prude view of the body and sex, we need to instead adopt a proper and Biblical view.
The human body:
Much of what attracts young men to porn is the allure of the forbidden. Growing up many if not most Christian boys are constantly told that the allure of the female body is so strong that they have no choice but to lust when exposed to any part of it.
I believe many young men get into porn as an innocent desire to see what has been hidden. They are told growing up that the sight of a bare breast (thigh, midriff, ankle, etc) will set them into wild fits of lust. They are told to avert their eyes every time a girl walks by in a bikini. This kind of indoctrination creates a curiosity in the young mind. Will the sight of female flesh really make them feel great? What’s under there that is so powerful it must be hidden at all times?
Naturally these boys will look for what is most accessible. Unfortunately, most of what is readily available is highky sexual in nature. The media reinforces the teaching that men can only view women as sex objects by portraying them primarily as sex objects. And, just as prohibiting and limiting alcohol consumption until older and older ages leads many into binge drinking and unhealthy alcohol abuse, limiting healthy exposure to the normal human body leads to unhealthy binge consumption of unhealthily sexualized bodies. What started as a curiosity easily turns into an addiction.
When you are constantly told “don’t look don’t look don’t look” your mind is being trained to view women’s bodies (and women in general) as stumbling blocks, not as people.
I knew guys in college who were proud of the fact that they stared at the sand or the sky every time they went to the beach. They avoided even the slightest sight of flesh. That is not something to be proud of. That’s actually a great sign that you need an adjusted mind. One should be able to see a nude woman (or any part of a woman) without flying into fits of sexual rage.
We should not confuse attraction with lust. Attraction is normal, wild covetousness of women is not. Men who grow up being told that this is how they will react to the sight of women are in a sense conditioned into lust. Well-meaning “bounce your eyes” teachers tell them that even just one lingering glance is lust. If merely looking is lust, why not continue on to do the real thing?
Many of the “bounce your eyes” porn-fighters make avoiding the sight of the female body the cornerstone of their method. I recommend the opposite approach. I recommend seeing it more, specifically in an artistic, non-sexual setting.
This serves two purposes. First, it removes much of the “forbidden fruit” aspect of the body that increases unhealthy interest in it. Second, it trains the mind to view the body as on object of symmetry and beauty, not as a purely sexual object. If the non-sexualized nude body was a normalized sight in our culture this “body = sex” association would be much more difficult to plant in the minds of young men (and women).
If you can train your mind to “not lust” by averting your eyes you are also training your mind to lust when your gaze lingers. A much better approach is to learn a proper perspective of the body not as a pornographic object but as an object made in the image of God and worthy of our respect and admiration.
I found that when I started painting and drawing the human figure, much of the sexual aspects of the body faded into the background. It’s not that the body is not attractive, it just becomes attractive in a different way. When viewed as art, the body becomes lines, curves, and symmetry. The body becomes an object of great beauty, not an object of sexual appetite.
If you think that the body uncovered is sin in itself just stick around for my next CRAS post.
My last posts got called out for being “repressive” and “puritanical”. I hope I did not come across as prude to my mainly Christian audience. My intent is not to make sex taboo or make people think it is dirty and couples can’t have fun with it. Quite the contrary, I encourage married couples to experiment and try new things to keep their sex lives spicy.
Key word there is “married”. That is the box I place sex into. I don’t think it is repressive or “puritanical” (not in the sense most use it anyway) to claim that truly healthy sex is found only within the bounds of committed heterosexual monogamy. Marriage is God’s gift to us and allows us the ability to channel our sexual appetites into a productive and beautiful place, rather than into degrading and harmful places.
In my opinion, one of the best ways to take the steam out of the pornographic culture we live in is to teach a healthy ethic of sex. This needs to be done early and often in our children’s lives. Start with basic biology well before puberty begins and slowly introduce them to the fact that sex feels good and has many positive and wonderful effects within a committed and monogamous relationship.
We need to teach our kids, boys and girls, that attraction is a normal thing. As they grow, they are going to find themselves feeling inclined to look and linger at the bodies of others. We need to teach them that this is normal and healthy and that they shouldn’t be ashamed of it. They should not obsess over or feed these thoughts too much either as they can lead to lust.We shouldn’t be teaching them that this attraction is lust or that every time they notice another person they will lust. They can have these thoughts and feelings and not be mastered by them.
We then need to teach them that marriage is the channel God intended us to put our sexual thoughts and desires into. Teach them that passionate marriages are a good and blessed thing, and that there is nothing shameful at all about sex within that boundary.
To fight porn’s temptation our children need to understand that sex is not a tool for self-gratification. Sex is a building block of intimacy with another person. It is one way we share ourselves with the one person we will (should) spend the bulk of our lives with. It is a powerful part of building intimacy and as such should be reserved for one person alone.
There are many more things I could say, but I hope you get the idea. Perhaps one day I’ll get deeper into these discussions as I’m sure some of you will find tons of holes in this that I simply don’t have the ability to fill in so few words.
But for now, I’ll leave it at this: if you want to keep your self or your kids off porn, work on changing your and/or your children’s understanding of the body and of sex.
Well, I’m a little late this week. We’re in the process of moving so life has been a bit of a whirlwind.
Here are two short recommendations for this week:
Kopecky was a band I discovered while working as a road guard on a fire in Northern Idaho. There wasn’t much traffic but there was XM radio in the rental truck!
“Drug For The Modern Age ” is my favorite of the two albums I have heard by them. It has a pretty nifty 80’s vibe and I enjoy the vocals by both male and female singers. It’s not often that bands will switch up singers like that and have it work out well, in my humble opinion.
The two songs that get stuck in my head the most are “Quarterback” and “Better Luck Next Time”. Probably my least favorite is the title track. But they are all good for hanging out or driving, so check them out next time you need something just a little bit different.
For my art this week, I recommend you check out The Feast of St.John by Jules Adolphe Breton.
There aren’t too many copies of it floating around the internet, though I believe if you dig long enough you’ll find it in Gandalf’s Gallery. I won’t talk too much about it but I will say I liked it so much that it inspired me to make a horrible version of my own:
Those were my early days. I’d like to think that I would do better next time.
Well, that’s it for this week. Hopefully next week I will be sitting still long enough to write something better.
Before I talk about ways to fight a porn obsessed culture, I’d like to be frank about a couple misconceptions men and women have about the subject.
Marriage and Porn Addiction
Women, before you get serious about a man, you need to have a frank and honest discussion about this topic. He needs to know you’re serious about this topic, and you need to know whether you can trust him. It’s that simple.
Don’t necessarily come out and directly ask “So, do you watch porn?” on your first date. Look for ways to bring it up. Maybe discuss human trafficking or your opinion on transgender bathrooms, there are no shortage of current topics floating around the internet that have a direct or indirect relation to the topic of sex.
Many of you are probably creative enough to breech the subject well enough to gauge his opinion of porn without directly asking if he’s addicted.
When you do get serious make it a point that there is no marriage until he commits to quitting this habit if you find out he has one. Don’t give a timetable. If he asks how long he has to go without ask him how frequently he would like you to text out sexual pictures of yourself to “friends”, it’s just about the equivalent.
Man, don’t think that just because you get married your problems are going to go away. If anything marriage just magnifies your porn addiction. Just because you’re having sex does not mean your appetite for the drug of porn is going to go away. In fact it may even increase.
Men, don’t think that you can just quit for a couple of months and be rid of the urge. Eventually it is going to come back. You’ll have withdrawal. You will still have the desire and the urges for quite some time. They may not be as strong as they were in the midst of the addiction period but they will still be there. I recommend that you be very honest with your wife-to-be or your wife about your problem. Let her know that you really want to kill it and it is not more important to you than she is. Ask for her help and accountability while fighting your urges.
What is Porn?
Some define porn as anything depicting anyone (attractive) in a state of undress. This is a rather awful definition. Porn is porn in the eye of the beholder. Pretty much anything can and has been used as porn.
Inversely, many things that are commonly seen as porn may not be to all all who perceive it. So don’t automatically assume all men are lusting at Victoria’s Secret posters in the mall.
Don’t assume every artistic nude is an automatic turn-on. But also, don’t be naive and assume that just because a woman (or man) is covered up that she (or he) can’t be the object of lustful thoughts.
Who watches this smut?
People from all walks of life ingest pornography. It’s not just a teenage male problem. It’s not just a male problem. In fact, there is a fair amount of push in our culture to encourage women to watch it so they can somehow be equal to men. Women can now share their addiction with their husbands, because that’s healthy.
Pastors watch it. Your children’s teachers watch it. Young kids are watching it. Even older people are watching it. If there was ever a “everybody’s doing it” excuse, it certainly belongs to porn.
What makes it bad?
I won’t go through the litany again, but I will tell you the worst part of porn addiction is the numbness it produces in normal sexual interactions. In order to maintain healthy sex, porn addicts often have to resort to sex toys or fantasy. They no longer simply enjoy sex, they must do something more provocative to get off.
Perhaps with some of these things out of the way, next week’s posts will make more sense. Check back Wednesday for an unconventional porn fighting idea that you may not have heard of before.
This one word has many definitions, many connotations, and many reactions.
I will not start by telling you why it is evil.
I will not tell you that it give you a false sense of what sex is like, there is quite a bit of realistic porn out there. This is not your father’s unrealistic porn; this is often real people having real sex.
I will not tell you that it gives you a false impression of what women should look like, though it might, but again, this is not your father’s porn. Often these are real women, no photoshop or plastic surgery involved.
I will not tell you that porn is bad because you are lusting for women that are not your wife. It might be, but I dare say chances are you do not want that woman on your screen, you just want the pleasure that you are seeing portrayed on that screen. You covet the sex, probably not the women.
I will not tell you that porn makes you a violent lover or practice “unnatural acts” as a result of seeing it. Sex has been done in many ways for many millennia, porn is probably just capturing what is already out there.
I will not tell you that it’s degrading to women and the women in it are always victims of rape or sexual slavery. While that may be largely true, it is not completely honest. Some are; many are not.
Porn is a scourge on your life. While you think it is increasing your pleasure in life, it’s secretly in the back of your brain robbing you of your libido and desire for normal relationships. It stunts you sexually and makes you weak in the bedroom.
If you haven’t gotten hooked, don’t. If you have just dipped a toe in the waters, get out. Don’t let this refuse infuse into your mind.
If you are currently hooked on it, stop. Quit. Cold-turkey.
If you are a Christian, you are no longer slaves to sin. It’s this simple: you don’t have to. So much of our culture tells men they will. Culture tells men they have to, if they don’t it’s assumed there is something wrong with them. Maybe this is true for the unregenerate, but Christian, you don’t have to. You have a choice. You can stop.
Culture tries to tell us that “boys will be boys” and that men are nothing but insatiable animals unable to control baser instincts and that the must lust for the flesh of women or there is something wrong with them. This is the great lie of our day. Men are not mere animals. Men have minds and consciences and are able to make moral choices.
There are many options out there for men wanting to quit their addiction, from accountability software to men’s support groups. There is even a group called “NoFap” which has a secular spin.
I won’t recommend the “bounce your eyes” option. I don’t recommend you shame yourself (or your sons for that matter) about noticing attractive women. You will be faced with beautiful women your entire life. Avoiding them is simply not an option.
First, we have to stop confusing attraction with lust. There is something about attraction to women that makes many Christian men freak out. But attraction is not lust. Arousal itself isn’t even lust. Was Christ aroused by the thought of bread while fasting in the desert? I would venture a “yes” otherwise it could not very well have been called a “temptation”. Attraction and arousal may play into lust, but they are not themselves lust. Lust involves a coveting or strong desiring to have something that does not rightfully belong to us as our own.
When we lust after a woman, we are objectifying her and desiring to have her for our own pleasure. Attraction is an entirely different animal. Attraction to someone of the opposite sex is merely a natural reaction to the beauty and desirability of the opposite sex. We are made to find the opposite sex attractive.
Arousal happens. Attraction happens. Lust is a choice.
I love luxury cars. I can look at beautiful cars all day. I would love to have an Austen Martin DB9 in my driveway. One could say I am attracted to the lines and symmetry of this particular vehicle. I can imagine myself driving it. But am I coveting it? No. At the end of the day I do not want that car badly enough to steal it or kill for it. It’s just a nice thought. I can admire it from afar and not think, “I must have that!”
We can do the same thing for nice houses, or clothes, or any number of attractive things. Is the attraction to these things covetous? I don’t believe so. I can find these things attractive and even desirable without lusting for them. Lust involves the conscious choice to be overwhelmed with desire to the point that all I can think of is having the object of my lust at all costs.
As I said before, I do not think men lust for the women in porn as much as they lust for the passion and sensation of the sex itself. They may covet the exotic idea of sex with women who are not theirs, but I do not think deep down they actually want the woman. They want that passion so badly that they are willing to endanger their real sex lives in favor of the addiction to a fake one.
We need to teach men to properly channel sexual urges into their spouse or into productive endeavors. We need to also train them to see women as people, more than just their bodies, and not as sexual objects. While they should be taught it’s normal and good to admire the beauty of a woman as a part of God’s creation they should not be taught that those women are objects for their covetous desires.
We ought not focus so much on lust and telling men not to have contact with women lest they stumble. We ought to be teaching what Paul teaches in Timothy:
Since today is Valentine’s Day, and this story came across my feed recently, this seems an apt topic.
Sunday morning I was greeted first thing with a blog about daddy-daughter dates. The author of this post has decided that treating your daughter with common decency is symptomatic of “the patriarchy”. She contends that it is “creepy” to take your daughter out and treat her special. Somehow, in her mind, inspiring your daughter to expect respect from men is encouraging “rape culture”.
First off, I contend that fathers should treat their daughters special just because their daughters are their daughters. This is a little person who loves you and needs your love in return. You’ve been entrusted with her care and with teaching her to be a decent human being in a big ugly world. Treat her special because she is special.
Secondly, it’s not wrong or “creepy” to treat your children with common respect. The author’s contention that pulling your child’s chair out for them, picking out their outfit, and basically treating them with kindness and love somehow promotes “rape culture” is ridiculous.
Please, stop insisting that a man holding the door for you is “rape”. You’ve destroyed all the meaning of that word and have disrespected every woman who has actually been raped. Rape culture is promoted mostly by teaching little girls that all men are creeps. Set their standards low and they will settle for any sleeze that tells them he loves them. After all, if all men are creeps, why waste time trying to get a good one?
When a father takes his daughter out and treats her with respect, he’s not teaching her that she is unequal to men. He is teaching her what real love looks like from a man. Real love respects others and treats them not just as equals but, in many respects, as superiors. Shouldn’t this be desired by modern feminists? Shouldn’t they want this?
Why do modern feminists insist that equality is a zero-sum game and that we can’t treat people with kindness and also see them as equals? Not only do I open doors for women, I also open doors for men. Is it because I think they are weak, or below me, or not equal? No, it is because I respect them and I like to treat other people with kindness and love.
Do these women think that men treat other men like dirt and therefore the only way to be equal with men is to be treated like dirt? Instead of teaching men to stop treating their daughters with special love and care shouldn’t we instead call men to treat other men (and women) with respect?
Must men treat women like dirt in order to be considered up to date with modern feminist equality standards?
She also says that mother son dates aren’t a thing. Personally, I hope women do take their sons out on dates. Parenting requires one-on-one time with your child. When you have 5 kids like we do it’s darn near impossible to get one-on-one time with each one. Being intentional about getting that time is to be commended.
Thanks to Freud and the sexual Revolution, our culture is convinced that our sexuality is what defines us as people. Therefore, according to our culture, even showing affection to your kids is somehow sexual. This is just plain stupid. It is not sexual to show affection to your children. If it is every good parent should be in jail. (And if it does in fact become sexual, you deserve worse than jail.)
It is perverted to suggest that somehow taking your daughter out for dinner, pulling her chair out, opening doors for her, and calling her beautiful and a princess is somehow sexual. To claim such doesn’t just betray the insecurities of the author, it strongly condemns modern culture with its ridiculous sexual mores.
I’ll give her that purity balls are a little creepy and weird. Those actually do create a weird sexual tension between fathers and daughters. Yes, you should abstain from sexual activity until you are married, but pledging your purity to your father is a little awkward and kind of creepy.
But taking your child out one-on-one for special time together is healthy, natural, and should be normal.
Should we take our daughters out one on on? Yes. Should we also take our sons out one on one? Yes. Should we treat them with dignity and kindness and do kind things for them? Yes. This is teaching them common courtesy and how to treat others like human beings. It is not teaching them to lay down and accept demeaning treatment.
It has been shown that girls often marry men like their fathers. They learn how men should treat women from how their father treats them and more importantly, their mother. Girls who are abused or watch their mothers be abused often pursue men who abuse. Is this what we want our daughters to do?
Why do modern feminists want men to continue to marry jerks? Is it because they want to validate their idea that all men are jerks and that all men are part of “the patriarchy”?
Daddy-daughter dating is not patriarchy. Patriarchy is insisting that your daughter or your wife is less than you and that she does not deserve your respect. Patriarchy says that because of her sex she does not deserve honor. As a woman, she deserves nothing but to be under you as a slave or servant.
Patriarchy views females as less than males. It does not honor them by opening doors, calling them wonderful names, or treating them with respect and dignity. Patriarchy puts women under men’s thumbs. By taking daughters out and treating them kindly, you are teaching them to expect men to love, honor, and cherish them. You are teaching them to expect respect from men. This is anti-patriarchy.
I suggest to these feminists that if they want to end “the patriarchy” they should call on men to start treating their daughters with kindness and honor. They should encourage them to put their daughters on a pedestal and treat them as individuals worthy of great respect. This will teach their daughters to expect their husbands and all men to respect them and treat them with dignity.
If daughters are treated like dirt by their father they will learn to accept that treatment by all men. They will continue to support the patriarchy by giving themselves to patriarchal jerk men. Let’s instead encourage them to expect more from men.
End the patriarchy, and while we are at it, end third and fourth-wave feminism.
It’s been a really busy week for me so this is going to be a bit short.
This week’s musical recommendation is Chumbawamba’s English Rebel Songs 1381-1984. Back before they were known for Tubthumper they put out a full album of English folk/protest songs. I realize that an anarcho-capitalist like me shouldn’t be listening to anarcho-communist folk songs but I still like the tone of most of them. The musical quality is great, even if the lyrics are a bit propagandizing. If only there were an anarcho-capitalist folk group out there that could write as well as the Socialists. On day perhaps, but for now, check this one out.
I don’t have an art reco this week, except to point you at Gandalf’s Gallery over on Flickr. Most of my exposure to different art styles has come from there. It’s a whole art museum you can view from the comfort of your own home!
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)
Anxiety sucks. Thanks (but no thanks) to anxiety, most of the normally joy inducing events in my life have been reduced to numbness or paralyzing worry. Every bit of good news is given a caveat by my brain. Not much really makes me happy or excited.
I don’t share this part of me much. I call it my douche-bag brain. It’s the part of my brain that whispers “I want to die” first thing in the morning. It’s the part of my brain that refuses to enjoy experiences because it tells me there are others who may not be enjoying the same things. It’s the part of my brain that won’t accept good news because it assumes that something horrible is going to happen. There is no such thing as good news, there’s always a catch.
Very rarely do I ever exhibit outward signs of this anxiety. I’ve perfected my poker face and cool demeanor. But while my outside is calm, my inside is racing through every possible contingency and assuming 95% of them are doomed to some variety of failure.
Now, for my chosen career this can be somewhat helpful. Having a good situational awareness is key to safe firefighting. Having the ability to process large amounts of data and creating contingencies for many outcomes is great to ensure everyone gets out alive. But in everyday living this pattern of thinking can be very exhausting and thoroughly fry one’s brain.
Unfortunately (fortunately?) for me my brain has developed tactics for dealing with this issue of burnout. I go numb. I no longer get get excited for anything. I no longer get torn up by bad news. Every bit of information is taken in with the same bit of “meh”. Food, drink, and even sex is not as enjoyable since even the physical data gets a filter.
This year I have resolved to be more content. But that contentment won’t come if I am anxious. Contentment is not numbness or limp acceptance of one’s circumstances. Contentment is a peaceful understanding that one’s circumstances are exactly where one is Providentially supposed to be. Contentment is joy (not happiness happiness necessarily, they are two different things) in all circumstances good and bad.
Numbness is not joy. If I am to be content I must fight my brain for control of my responses. I must learn to respond to data and not merely react. I must learn to take every errant thought captive and submit it to intense scrutiny and correction. I must train my brain to accept physical pleasures as good gifts of God. I must learn to get excited again about good news and truly mourn for the bad.
Now, if my brain would not add “stop being anxious” to the list of things to be anxious about, I probably would be able to get rid of it. For now, it’s just going to be prayer and supplication. So far that has seemed to work out for me. God does provide. The more I trust Him, the more He has provided.
Anxiety sucks, but the more I live, the more I’m proved how wrong it is. DB brain may be a loudmouth jerk, but he’s also a liar . I know that all will work out. I know that eventually, despite what my anxiety says, life does tend to find a way to proceed without too much complete failure. Every day is a test of my will to kill this. I intend to win.
Living on a mountain for six months can teach you some things. Namely the fact that much of what folks do in “the real world” is just superficial silliness designed to make their lives seem better than they are. That sounds like the beginning of something preachy, doesn’t it? Well, I hope this doesn’t come across as such.
We grew up in Northern Virginia, just outside of the Beltway, right in the seat of the country’s money and power. This area always has something new and flashy, and since my high school days the expansion of government has only brought more wealth and change to the area.
I actually never noticed how nice people dress here until I moved to Florida. I really didn’t notice it until I came back from out west.
Probably the most noticeable place where this clothing shows up is in church. People around here seem to dress up everywhere, but church is especially primped and proper. When we walk in with our rag tag bunch of hoodlums we feel like the conspicuous ones, despite the fact that we are actually quite drab.
All of this to say I don’t understand why women (and men for that matter) spend hours of their lives every day (especially Sundays) primping and decorating themselves. Do they do this to impress God? God’s not impressed with these displays. Do they do it strictly for themselves? Maybe. I honestly think they do it to impress others and draw attention to themselves, even (and especially) at church.
We are all narcissistic at heart. Every one of us wants our ego stroked. We will go to great lengths to entice a compliment out of someone. It’s not just in our physical worlds that we seek to feed this engorged ego, social media provides an excellent platform to do this. Not only can we enlarge our own status online, we can crush others mercilessly and hide behind anonymity at the keyboard.
Why do you think I blog? Yes, I do want to spread ideas and make people think. Yeah, I want a place to fully explore and write out my thoughts and maybe solicit ideas from others. But mostly, I just want stats. I want to know people agree with me and read what I write with regularity.
I doubt I am that alone in checking my Facebook notifications every ten minutes to see what new “likes” are on my posts (not many). It is actually somewhat shameful really. Sometimes I feel like a drug addict just trying to get my fix.
I try my hardest not to tear others down to build my own social media reputation. I can’t say the same about many of the Christians I see on Facebook. Much of what passes for “help” or “advice” on the pages I am in are really just veiled statements of judgement. If you feel differently from the majority you are quickly called “unwise” or worse, a heretic. If you actually agree with some of the points made by unnaproved people you are shamed into keeping silent by the mocking heaped on them by their enemies.
There seems to be no one one attacking ideas in the narcissistic mess called social media. There is only mocking people and reducing them to memes and caricatures. All feminists are evil. All homosexuals are crazed lunatics. All BLM folks are jerks. Everything they stand for is evil. Therefore we can mock them and belittle them as people.
This is hardly a Christ-like way of handling people. Christ did not mock every single sinner He dealt with. When He did mock it was often with pointed questions, not personal attacks. This is not to say we are ever wrong for calling people a brood of vipers when necessary, but more often than not our usage of strong words is intended to boost our own image, not to improve the lives and hearts of others.
We ought to be neighbors to sinners, on and off the Internet. This requires us to put away pride and anonymity and act like non-narcissistic adults. Calling people names you would never call them to their face or mocking their appearance is not just cruel, it’s childish. Calling people heretics over non-essentials just makes you look like a Pharisee.
I may be beating a dead horse with this, but can we start debating ideas instead of superficial things like how someone looks or what “abnormal” things they may enjoy in their spare time? I dare say the Internet would be a much more productive place.