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Religion and Sexuality - Lecture 2

5 Pages

Religion & Culture
Course Code
Brent Hagerman

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 Recap o that we're studying religion with the modern eyes o "sexuality" did not exist before 19th century o matt Slick  Leviticus  Interprets it literally. but which is the correct "literal"  applied "homosexuality", but that term did not exist prior to the 19th century o combining sex and religion works in some religions, but not across all of them  cultural relativity   What is "Good sex"? o what is good, what is correct o list of Christian sexual sins- attributed to Theodore, First Archibishop of Canterbery (7th century CE)  fornicating with virgin - 1 year of pennance  bestiality - 15years  after20 years male-male - 20 years  sodomites - 7years  setting up norms, as well as policing them o List of Buddhist sins  attributed to Lu Dongbin (9th century CE)  excessive number of wives  showing preferences for 1 person  lude dreams, frivolous songs, frivolous words o in Buddhism (monastic)  desires should be avoided, no attachments   The Fall of Adam and Eve o Genesis 3  being naked has caused "embarrassment" / "shame"  "women lead men astray" - uses eve as an example o shame and sex are both powerful social tools o sex/nudity lead to bad things o body is opposite to the spiritual realm  garden of Eden represents the spiritual realm  bodies a source of shame/sin o sex does not have a place in the garden   Dualism in Early Christianity o "Live by the spirit, I say, and do not gratify the desires of the flesh. for what the flesh desires is opposed to the spirit and what the spirit desires is opposed to the flesh ( Galatians 5:16)  body as a vessel of sin o Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of god? ... " - Corinthians 6:9 o Jewish tradition is part of Christian tradition   Judaism o Kiss me; make me drunk with your kisses! your sweet loving is better than wine (song of songs 1:2) o sex is positive in Judaism o crucial to Jewish families o some men had several wives o You are fragrant, you are myrrh and aloes, all the young women want you. Song of Songs 1:3-4 o Your breasts are two fauns, twins of a gazelle, grazing in a field of lilies. Song of Songs 4:5  Christian Dualism o to appreciate this world, therefore, one had to essentially deny bodily pleasures and activities, including sexual activity, and strive for a more contemplative , ascetic life  Western Dualism and sinful flesh o platonic dualism  idea that world is divided into two realms, material and spiritual  Body presents us with unnumerable distractions, because of the necessity of looking after it; and again, if any illnesses assail it, they too hamper us in our pursuit of truth. the body fills us with love, desire and fear and all kinds of phantasy and nonsense  see sex as a hindrance to finding beauty  Roman Stoics o only rational purpose of sex was procreation o physical pleasure is something they need to overcome o sex sullies the sacred  So far... o Christianity’s view and to large extent the western worlds of sex is influenced by platonic dualism o for early Christians sin is rooted in the body so all sexual action or thought is sinful  Augustine o 354-430, bishop of Hippo Regius (Algeria) o most influential early church theologian o wrote City of God and Confessions o really influenced by platonic dualism o struggled with lust in early life o had a mistress prior to becoming Christian  talked about how extramarital sex is bad o sexual activity, whether physical or mental, was sinful yet was tolerable for procreative purposes only within the bonds of marriage o main problem is that passion blocks rationality o turn away from sensual pleasure  St Thomas Aquinas o Italian Dominican priest 1225-1274 o good sex:
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