From the Pit of Pornography to the Peace of Purity

Pornography is a plague upon our society, far worse than any physiological affliction, but the question of what to do about it is complex, requiring more than one approach. Jake Canning suggest filters on our devices and routers, especially in family homes, as a sort of self-censorship. Such used to be provided by broadcasters themselves, back in the day when we were limited to television channels.

Most of us now have hand-held devices that can open a whole infernal world, anywhere, anytime, and, in this light, Kennedy Hall this morning over at Crisis urges a more radical approach: If you’re addicted, get rid of the smartphone or tablet, crush it to powder, as Ransom beat the Un-Man, an image of Satan and all that is evil, to a pulp in C.S. Lewis’ space trilogy. Cold showers also help.

Ultimately, however, virtue has to be within our souls, and this includes chastity, the ‘successful integration of sexuality within the person’. Without some such integration and self-control, addicts will always be powerless, finding ways to access ‘porn’, even within their own imaginations and minds. It is incumbent that we get to the level where images that objectify the human body becomes repulsive, not attractive.

The means to chastity? Well, as a start, peruse paragraphs 2338 to 2345, and 2517 to 2527 of the Catechism: Regular and insistent prayer, devotion to Our Lady and Saint Joseph and all the saints, custody of the imagination and eyes, some level of asceticism, modesty in clothing, speech and affection, and, not least, frequenting the sacraments, honest and clear confessions and the Holy Eucharist.

And persevere. If we ask for the bread of purity, God will not give us a scorpion of lust. Ask, and ye shall receive, a hundred-fold, and flowing over.