"Love! Do you know the meaning of the word?" 'How should I not?' said the Lady, 'I am in love...in Love Himself.'
~C.S. Lewis
The Great Divorce

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Proliferation of Sex in the Media

Just yesterday, I turned off one of my favorite television shows of all time because of an extended lewd conversation. I went to watch a youtube video only to find that the featured video of the day was something called Miss March. I picked up my mail to find a very revealing Victoria's Secret coupon shoved between the envelopes.

Our culture is saturated in sex. And yet, for as much as we see it around us, I think very few people understand it. Even Christians, who are told right in the Bible what sex is, think of it primarily as something we just have to avoid until we get married. That is what chastity has come to mean.

No one seems to remember anymore that its primary purpose is "to be fruitful and mulitply." (see the post on Birth Control) No one seems to remember that marriage is the picture of that spiritual marriage that exists between Christ and his Bride, the Church. It is a special, rather sacred thing.

Nonetheless, it is portrayed in media as a quick way for pleasure. The nature of television lends itself to making people believe that anything they see should happen that fast. Sex is something that should be enjoyed and then the relationship forged by it can easily be discarded. No one on television portrays the eternal aspect of what is involved in sex. It's all about what I can get right now.

So is it really a shock that sex has lost almost all of its value in American culture? Do even Christian people see it as a participation in the love shared between Christ and his Church? Not to mention, it is any wonder that STD's are so rampant? Sex is a good thing created by God for men. But it is intended for reproduction and to foster the already existing love between a man and a woman.

But the modern Christian understanding of sex is no different than the pagan one-only devout Christians wait until they are married. So as something of a Lenten challenge, I am asking my readers to avoid all sex in the media. Let's use this period of time, to try and recover sex from its trivialized position today as nothing more than a means to pleasure. Perhaps, if enough people did this, the sex industry would feel economic pain, sex between married couples would be viewed in a more eternal light, reported diseases would fall, and we would again see a rise in the number of children being raised by two parents.

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