Thursday, December 23, 2010

Thoughts on God and Sexuality, Part 1-God

This post has elements of sarcasm and cutting humor, most of which (if you don't have a sense of humor) will horribly offend the people it's poked at. To those people who are offended, please be consoled by the fact that I'm a 22 year old man sitting in his parent's house while his friends are off galavanting around without him because he's a stick in the mud. If you can picture me sitting here depressed from missing his girlfriend and wishing he had more friends around then you should get the delicious irony of my statements, and laugh along with me. If you can't, well, go get a life.

To those of you who know me, I can probably read what you're thinking just about... now: Oh no, not ANOTHER rant from Nathan about something that he's talked himself hoarse about. I think I'll just tune him out. Naw, not quite. While I am infamous for linking God and sexuality in long-winded, sometimes scandalous speeches this is a bit different. Nate, the TITLE of your post says "Thoughts on God and Sexuality". How's that different? Time, my dear friends, time. It's been a long time since I've given my thoughts on this stuff, and even longer since I've last read anything Theology of the Body-related. The last year has given me a whole host of experiences, which I'm reflecting upon here in this blog. The last year hasn't changed anything, just given me a new way to look at it. In this little series I'm hoping to finally lock down thoughts of mine that have been racing through my mind for the past year. This is the first time the vast majority of you who know me have ever heard me say what I'm saying here, and possibly the first time any of my readers have thought about any of this stuff.

For the rest of you, who don't know me personally? Just sit back and relax, and be glad that you're only reading about my perspective on this stuff now. All you need to know now is that this is a series about God and His images, us, in the style of Theology of the Body. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Theology of the Body, it's a series of reflections authored by the late John Paul the Great, who linked the human body and sexuality to God. Theology of the Body taught that our very bodies and the way they operate is a sign of God, a visible sacrament. I was taught Theology of the Body at the tender (and not so innocent) age of 15 by Father Tom Loya, who learned directly from John Paul himself. To be honest, I believed what John Paul said from the moment I heard it. Something about it clicked in my soul and I knew that this was part of the answer that I'd been looking for. I'd been bullied a lot as a kid, and was taught Muay Thai at 12 to help me combat the people who were constantly attacking me. It was supposed to give me a backbone (I had never willingly hit or swore at anyone before) and discipline. It sorta worked. I wound up suppressing the first three months of actual training and walked out with the trademark mouth that most of my friends know me by now. Before Muay Thai I'd had a difficult time understanding intimacy and closeness, and being constantly forced to hit and be hit by people that cared for me did nothing to help my confusion. Theology of the Body felt like something that would teach me the reality and intimacy that I'd been needing so badly. This was my ticket out of my misery.

Well, sorta. You can lead a dog to the water but you can't get him to drink of it himself. I wound up only half absorbing the things I learned and came out with a strange vision of Theology of the Body not all that far from Christopher West's old views, which is not helpful to a teenaged boy. But time passes, and I'm 22 now. That means I've had 7 years of living, praying, arguing, quarreling, and sinning to reflect upon what I was taught. This is the philosophy that I've come synthesize from what I've heard. I can't guarantee to be correct, pure, or even sane, or even to have all the facts. I don't think anyone who has a blog or a collar can, it's not a luxury that can be afforded. But I can guarantee that this is truly what I think , and that if anything can be awarded to me it's my attempts to be sincere.

Now let's get started (Took ya long enough, didn't it???)

All things come from God, and therefore should be traced back to Him. Like any artist God has put reflections of Himself into His work. These reflections are not 100% accurate (like all artistic reflections) but they do exist. I'm thoroughly convinced that the sun's rising has something to do with the Father's begetting of the Son, for instance. How does that work? I have no idea, it's an intuitive sense that I have. Go ahead, call me nuts. But have the decency to call the crackpots known as author's historians, who seem to think that author's write their issues into their novels (like the people who seem to think that Dracula is about sensual evil in Victorian times. If these people had actually read the book they'd know this isn't true. But I digress) Suffice to say, if you don't have a monotheistic and Trinitarian view of the world then these essays are of no use to you. You won't find anything that will work, because you don't have the proper worldview to absorb my ideas. So, if that's the case, read on with that knowledge. Or go become Christian (that's probably the better of the options. But whatever).

What follows is my view of God, drawn as closely as possible from the Holy Fathers of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. If something in the Ecumenical Councils is stated it's held up as law in my worldview, and so what I say here is with that in mind. If I contradict

I apologize, it wasn't the intention. Without the following paragraphs none of my following posts will make much sense, and I heartily recommend referring back to the next few paragraphs while reading this series to keep the context fresh.

God is a community of three persons: Father, Son, and Spirit. God is, Himself, a family. TheFather begets the Son and then makes the Spirit proceed through the Son. Thus saith The (Western) Creed and the Scriptures. To hopelessly steal from Scheed (Theology and Sanity) the Father, in self reflecting, begets the Son. The Father then loves the Son, Who returns this Love, which is the Holy Spirit. And thus the Holy Trinity has existed from whenever. Our most normal thing (a family) is a reflection of God Himself, and always has been.

God is holy. I think we've butchered that word, resurrected it, and then re-butchered it. When we hear the word holy these days we think of those stupid Puritans who thought that our bodies are evil and we should be in church all the time (to those people who are like that and married I respectfully tell them to go get drunk and have sex with their spouses more often, from what I hear it's a good deal of fun, regardless of whether you combine the activities or not). Actually, that's not really what the word means. The word holy means set apart, special. Unique. Something totally different and incomparable. When the seraphim sing "Holy! Holy! Holy!" I always think "Unique! Unique! Unique!"(and suppress the temptation to add "New York" in my head...) This is possibly the most important part that I think we've forgotten in these days that no one thinks are as good as the McCarthy era. God is unique.

We are like God, not the other way around. This one's pretty simple. Instead of saying that God is anthropomorphized (made in our image) we are divinized (made in God's image). Everything we do is in imitation of God somehow. This includes our sexual organs and desires, which are reflections of the Trinity. Remember that when I say reflection I mean it in the same way that an artist's personality and passions are reflected in his work. It's not necessarily direct, or even all the way intact, and in some cases it's not even rational. But it's there none-the-less, and we should pay attention to it. Our free will allows us to imitate these qualities of God, and since we are like Him, logically speaking it's a good idea to act as true to our nature as possible, and imitate God as closely as we can. For when God is glorified so are we.

Our purpose (on this earth and in the next world) is to glorify God with every thought, word, and deed that comes through us. We are God's creatures and should act in a manner that agrees with who God is and what God does. Otherwise it's just not a very nice painting, now is it? To do things out of line with God's will is to contradict your point of existence as a being.

Those are my four paragraphs. Short, sweet, and to the point (unlike the rest of my writing). In the following weeks I'm going to comment on the following topics with these three paragraphs in mind:

Homosexual Actions

You ready? Good. Get ready next week, for my thoughts on Pornography. Keep something in mind for next week: is nudity itself all that sinful? If so, then why's there a statue of two naked people kissing at the top of this post?