Monday, February 26, 2007

Christian Sexuality Part 6b


Freedom, Love and Pleasure Continued


Sex has become a mechanical activity based in technique, and experience, or so it seems if we consider the manner in which sex is discussed today. Perhaps putting it such gross terms does not sit well, and does not sound agreeable to most people, but nonetheless, this appears to be the way we look at sex today.

In Allan Bloom's posthumously published book, "Love and Friendship," he suggests that it is not the deeper Christian virtues of "agape," and "phileo," (sacrificial love, and brotherly love respectively), but "eros" which has somehow lost its definition, and somehow demands reinstatement to a nobler view in order to recapture the true romance of sex.

"Christianity gave Eros poison to drink. He didn’t die, but became vice," Bloom quotes Neitzsche, and I suppose we must ask ourselves if this is intrinsically true for the faith we follow, or more a by-product of Christianity going astray of its purer values. How is it that the same religion which reveres the Song of Songs by Solomon is the a demonizer of that which is romantically erotic?

Although Allan Bloom was not a Christian (being Jewish, athiest, and most likely gay), he highlights a basic value which Christians ought to consider about sexuality - eros has been denuded of its romantic power by the modern likes of Freud, the Kinsey Report, and pop culture.

In the depths of romantic eroticism lies comraderie, companionship, and commitment found in such classics as "Romeo and Juliette," and certainly in the pursuit of the Shulamite in the Song of Songs

5 comments:

IZenBet said...

heya pastor Phil!
check out my new blog. i just posted a new thing on it.
i named it izenbets interests.

tell me what you think?
also, much apreciate the 6b, it kinda makes me relize in my search for a mate i would accept cheap thrills of holding someone close for a couple of hours rather than focusing on character first.

elizabeth

handmaid mary-leah said...

I couldn't disagree more. Its the Celibate Catholics (around 1000 ad & Puritans who made sex dirty not Christianity; this has never been a problem for the East like so many other things. The Eastern Orthodox look to the West and say, "What has happened; where did you go so astray?" The marriage bed is blessed and beautiful, the wedding crowns hang above the bed in the Greek tradition and the wedding icons of Christ and the Theotokos in the Slavic to remind the couple to keep their marriage bed undefiled or sacred, in other words. That just means to keep others out. And the best part of Orthodoxy with regards to this whole thing? Priests stay out of the bedroom, they have their own wives to take care of!
Glory to God for all things!
the handmaid,
Mary-Leah

Pastor Phil said...

Hi Mary-Leah,

I'm not sure what you are disagreeing with. Are you disagreeing with Neitzsche's quote? I can't say I fully agree with Neitzsche, but his observations were astute. Perhaps you should read the other parts of this series.

Your evaluation of fthe Puritans is actually incorrect as well. Some of the Puritans had remarkably glorious views of sexuality.

handmaid mary-leah said...

Don't be obtuse, I disagree with what you have said in your post; you write the tripe about "Bloom quotes Neitzsche" and then you say, "I suppose we must ask ourselves if this is intrinsically true for the faith we follow, or more a by-product of Christianity going astray of its purer values. How is it that the same religion which reveres the Song of Songs by Solomon is the a demonizer of that which is romantically erotic?"
And whether or not some Puritans had glorious views of sex or not, on the whole they are known as Puritans sexually for a reason or did the western view of missionary sex spawn from somewhere else entirely?
The crux of the issue is that this society is hyper-sexualized, nobody is keeping anything private and now to see Protestant churches getting in on the act is disheartening and sad and one more sign of the spirit of the age.
In Christ,
the handmaid,
Mary-Leah

Pastor Phil said...

Hi again Handmaid,

Obtuse? I was simply asking a question, and not posing a theory. You seem to be challenging the question I posed, which I did not specifically answer, because I don't think that it has a universal answer.

Is it that you think the church should have nothing to say on the subject of sexuality, and that when priests, or pastors discuss it it therefore seems inappropriate to you? Or is there another reason I don't understand for your disagreement with me posing a question?

I am not being obtuse, I simply don't understand how someone disagrees with a question like this. Disagreeing with an answer is another thing.

On Puritans - they were not called Puritans because of their sexual views. They were called Puritans because they desired to purify the Church of England from its sinful, political, and corrupt practices. Much different reason for a title. Although there were times the two collided and met.

Thanks for popping in to the blog.