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Passions in Poetry

Are women objects?

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Stephanos
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100 posted 03-21-2007 04:23 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ron:
quote:
I don't. Success is equally subjective, but it is also often (not always) more easily measured. In the context of Hollywood, it is MUCH more easily measured.


I think Essorant was placing Hollywood in much wider context.  It's easy enough for most of us to think (at least a little) that Hollywood culture has gone somewhat awry.  Therefore it's reasonable to question what it considers as "success" as well.  My only point was that you spoke of the success of your star examples with much more aplomb, than when you mentioned morality and wisdom.
  
  
quote:
Of course it's not off limits, Stephen. It is, however, very personal. It's between one person, one individual, and one god. Beyond that it is no longer morality, but just interference.


Seeing that most moral questions involve (and always have) how actions affect community and other individuals, I don't think it's quite as "individual" as you say.  Remember Ron, before you get huffed, we're not talking about law here (though, the assertion that morality and law have no relation is itself highly questionable), but philosophy.  The title was "Are Women objects", literally bursting with moral and philosophical implications.  Therefore your complaint of morality coming in the discussion is moot.  And unless law and constraint are presently being discussed, then your statement of "interference" is at best non-applicable, and at worst verging on paranoia.


quote:
What if you go bowling with a friend, Stephen? No love. No monogamous commitment. Aren't you using your friend as an object of pleasure, without a view of personhood or soul?

What makes sex different than bowling?


I almost responded by saying that if you don't see the difference, then my response is hardly worth it... But I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt, as typically playing the Devil's Advocate.  The nature of bowling is befitting of the intimacy level of friendship (even on a very casual level), while the nature of sex is befitting of the intimacy level of committed monogamy.  When one ilk of activity is mistaken for another, problems arise.  It's actually only when the proper and moral sensibilities are not possessed, ignored, or lost altogether, that sex has been viewed in disconnection with such a commitment, or as a common amusement with no further demands than than casual "fun".  Don't get me wrong, I am a man, and a sinful one at that, and I understand how easy is that deception.  But I'm aware that it is at work.  


You've made such comments yourself on previous threads, about casual sex being less than a desirable choice.  Why your change of tune now?  Could it have anything to do with the spirit of the age which can justify just about any puritanical view previously thought of as dangerous or wrong, and says that any moral prescription (beyond one's own immediate person) in indicative of a dull mind and a lack of compassion?  At least I'm hoping you're too wise for that, and still playing the Devil's advocate for the sheer fun and discussion of it.         


Stephen        
Stephanos
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101 posted 03-21-2007 04:35 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Oh I just thought I would add my thoughts on the Wisdom / intelligence controversy here.


Is it off base to view knowledge as knowlege, and wisdom as the rare will and ability to use knowledge properly?  Knowledge being seen as a kind of workforce, and wisdom as good management?  


This makes them kindred enough for Ron to not be quite so hard on Ess, but different enough for Ess to be more careful with his words.  


JMHO,

Stephen.  
Ron
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102 posted 03-21-2007 05:36 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Seeing that most moral questions involve (and always have) how actions affect community and other individuals, I don't think it's quite as "individual" as you say.

Absolutely not!

Thou shalt not kill was never meant to protect the other guy, any more than "Turn the other cheek" was. Morality is all about what happens to YOU when you transgress, not what happens to the victims of your transgressions. Your relationship with your god is the ultimate expression of individuality.

If morality was meant to protect society, we would have no need of laws.

quote:
The nature of bowling is befitting of the intimacy level of friendship (even on a very casual level), while the nature of sex is befitting of the intimacy level of committed monogamy.

Befitting, Stephen? Befitting for whom? And who gets to make that determination?

By the by, while it's only marginally relevant, I think you make much too light a thing of friendship. I believe friendship, at its best, can be every bit as profound and intimate as the most binding love affair. And every bit as rewarding.

Intimacy isn't about sex. Never has been. Or would you perhaps suggest that Jesus never had a deeply intimate relationship with another human being?  

quote:
You've made such comments yourself on previous threads, about casual sex being less than a desirable choice. Why your change of tune now?

The tune hasn't changed, Stephen, only the lyrics.  

I'm not playing Devil's Advocate, however. I'm, rather, trying to demonstrate that you can't use morality to justify telling someone else what to do. If your only objection to sex is a moral one, you've already lost the argument. And even a cursory glance at history, I think, shows that to be true. Agreement relies on arguing not what's morally right, but instead arguing what's pragmatically best.

quote:
The title was "Are Women objects", literally bursting with moral and philosophical implications.

Perhaps, but then I'll readily admit the title of the thread never held any interest to me. As expressed, the answer seems entirely self evident.

Of course women are objects.

So are men. And children and puppies and kittens, too.

It's very hard to hug a concept.  

Essorant
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103 posted 03-21-2007 06:23 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Ed

I must disagree.  The having of wisdom or intelligence doesn't determine how fully someone uses it.  One with an inch of wisdom/intelligence often uses his inch more wisely/intelligently than one with an acre of wisdom/intelligence.  All you are saying is that your brother doesn't practice or demonstrate wisdom/intelligence in one part of his life as much as another, that doesn't prove that "wisdom" and "intelligence" are seperate things.  

Edward Grim
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104 posted 03-21-2007 07:50 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

Come on man, you're really stretching here.

"your brother doesn't practice or demonstrate wisdom/intelligence in one part of his life as much as another, that doesn't prove that "wisdom" and "intelligence" are seperate things."

He doesn't practice wisdom because he doesn't have it but he has ample amounts of intelligence. So yes they are separate things. I live in the south, and you can talk to any old "southern hick" who is as wise as Socrates but still can't multiply. Yeah Ess, they're separate things.
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105 posted 03-21-2007 08:04 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

I was wondering Ron: what do you have against morality? Every time Steph mentions it or uses it in his argument, you write it off as irrelevant. And I'm asking very sincerely too. Are you just uber liberal or an atheist? I'm just curious, that's all; nothing to get ticked off about.
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106 posted 03-21-2007 08:29 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Edward, I believe very strongly in morality. For me.

I won't, however, ever expect you to abide by MY morality because, when push comes to shove, I won't allow you to shove YOUR morality down my throat. For morality to have any intrinsic meaning, it has to be voluntary. You have to choose to do what you believe is right, else it stops being morality and becomes law. We need the law, don't get me wrong, but the law only serves to protect. Morality serves to enrich.


Edward Grim
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107 posted 03-21-2007 08:49 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

Whoa now...

"I won't, however, ever expect you to abide by MY morality because, when push comes to shove, I won't allow you to shove YOUR morality down my throat."

What's that supposed to mean, man? I'm not shoving MY morality down YOUR throat. I don't think you even know the extent of MY morality. I just noticed that you don't like using morality in arguments with Steph so I asked. I don't think we've ever duked it out about morality.

Easy butch... lol, jeez.


"You have to choose to do what you believe is right, else it stops being morality and becomes law."

I agree 100%. See now, maybe we're not totally different.
Ron
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108 posted 03-21-2007 10:50 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Edward, I was using "you" in the Universal sense, not the specific one, both in that sentence as well as later when I said, "You have to choose to do what you believe is right." Similarly, when I said, "We need the law," I was speaking of the greater we, not just you and I.

Sorry if I wasn't clear and you misunderstood.
Essorant
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109 posted 03-22-2007 12:45 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

"He doesn't practice wisdom because he doesn't have it but he has ample amounts of intelligence. So yes they are separate things. I live in the south, and you can talk to any old "southern hick" who is as wise as Socrates but still can't multiply. Yeah Ess, they're separate things."

That to me is still just saying someone may use or show wisdom/intelligence in one way more than in another, such as in words and theories more than in deeds and practice.  And just because your brother doesn't demonstrate using intelligence/wisdom in a more judgemental and thoroughgoing way throughout his life doesn't at all mean he has no judgement or ability to judge or improve.  No one is just a knowledge-processor.   Everyone, whether you like it or not has wisdom/intelligence (including judgement) to some extent.

Essorant
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110 posted 03-22-2007 01:42 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

A man that has an inch of wit
is wont to take good care of it.

But he that has an acre's lot
has many parts that stray and rot.


Stephanos
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111 posted 03-22-2007 02:15 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ron:
quote:
Morality is all about what happens to YOU when you transgress, not what happens to the victims of your transgressions.
  

If it's all about what happens to me rather than my victim, then why is it a moral transgression at all?  Seems you're interpreting morality through the lens of philosophical egoism.  But you've mistaken the windows for the foundation of the house.

quote:
If morality was meant to protect society, we would have no need of laws.


Oh you've got me ... I admit, it would a moral outrage, a monstrous irresponsibility, and a crying shame NOT to have laws.         Naked pragmatism can never in reality be so cleanly resected from its moral moorings, as you've allegedly done in your arguments.


Actually it's our inablity to be moral, that leads to the necessity of law, giving the law an inverse relationship (but a relationship nonetheless) to the moral question.  

quote:
Befitting, Stephen? Befitting for whom? And who gets to make that determination?


Ultimately God does.  But it's certainly noteworthy that every moral system (and every major religion) has viewed mere casual sex as unwise and immoral (even if not embracing in totality the ideal of Christian monogamy).  It is still a majority which has recognized that sex is more than a thrill ride to be taken at whim, as something potentially dangerous in proportion to being rapturous.  Fine things come with unique and uncommon requirements of responsibility, by form and nature.  


quote:
By the by, while it's only marginally relevant, I think you make much too light a thing of friendship. I believe friendship, at its best, can be every bit as profound and intimate as the most binding love affair. And every bit as rewarding.



It's not irrelevant.  But you have misread me if you think that.  I only said that bowling was proper to the most casual of friendships, or even aquaintences.  Arguing from the least, not the ideal, to make a point ... namely that bowling and sex differ far more than just technically.  


Otherwise, I begrudge no one valuing friendship as a high and rewarding relationship.  I don't think a true friend (with no romantic inclinations or commitment) would have sex with a friend ... but even if if it happened and the friendship flourished, it would be in spite of the sex, which is adverse to friendship and goodwill where no romantic commitment is present.  


Even Rod's "Maggie Mae" lyrics contained that much insight.


I'm not arguing a hierarchy of marriage over friendship.  I'm arguing that some things are suited for one, and some are suited for the other, due to their differing nature.  Experience and sages alike have confirmed it over and over, in spite of our tendency to want to follow our baser impulses.  Let me speak, at least, to the egoist in you, that it is short term self interest rather than the longer view.  


quote:
Intimacy isn't about sex. Never has been.



I didn't say that intimacy was necessarily about sex, but that sex was about intimacy.

And C'mon, the life of Jesus doesn't prove your point, but mine.  He was abstinent precisely because he never married.  That didn't rule out intimacy for him, only the romantic kind and the sexual expression of it.  (of course he didn't reject those things as generally unlawful or wrong, only as particularly incongruent with what he came to accomplish for the Father, and for us).


quote:
you can't use morality to justify telling someone else what to do.


Why not?  Is it wrong to do so?  Are you telling me what to do?


quote:
If your only objection to sex is a moral one, you've already lost the argument.


Who said I objected to sex?  Maybe you're arguing with someone else?


quote:
Agreement relies on arguing not what's morally right, but instead arguing what's pragmatically best.



Firstly, perfect agreement is not something I always expect, or even think is necessary in the now.  


Secondly, since when did people agree on what's pragmatically best?


Thirdly, your usual method is to dissect pragmatic reality from moral truth.  But like pulling apart a miniature flower with boxing gloves, there's little left to admire when you're done.  Morality and Pragmatism, if not one and the same (which oddly enough is sometimes your argument too) are at least of the same blood-line, and won't be made strangers without consequences.  


quote:
Of course women are objects.

So are men. And children and puppies and kittens, too.

It's very hard to hug a concept.



I've got to think you're joking.  Because I'm thinking to myself: implicit in the title is the question whether women are treated as mere objects, whether women are MORE than objects, or treated so.  It's ontologically obvious that they are not LESS than objects.


Stephen.
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112 posted 03-22-2007 02:08 PM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

Ron Said...

By the by, while it's only marginally relevant, I think you make much too light a thing of friendship. I believe friendship, at its best, can be every bit as profound and intimate as the most binding love affair. And every bit as rewarding.


AMEN!!!!!!!!
Christopher
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113 posted 03-22-2007 03:09 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

quote:
But it's certainly noteworthy that every moral system (and every major religion) has viewed mere casual sex as unwise and immoral (even if not embracing in totality the ideal of Christian monogamy).  It is still a majority which has recognized that sex is more than a thrill ride to be taken at whim, as something potentially dangerous in proportion to being rapturous.  Fine things come with unique and uncommon requirements of responsibility, by form and nature.
That's hardly supported by the propogation of sex in popular media. I'd like to find where you discovered the majority's opinion on casual sex.

I think a lot of people make a mistake by assigning value only to those things which are unique, special, by their very nature. For example, having a monogomous, intimate relationship. There is true, high value in that relationship, but it doesn't negate the value in a less meaningful, casual relationship, only provides a contrast. I submit that without the possibility of a casual relationship, the monogomous relationship loses perceieved value. Just because Ben and Jerry's ice cream is the best, doesn't mean you can't enjoy Foster Farms once in a while and appreciate it on its own level.
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114 posted 03-22-2007 06:00 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Christopher:
quote:
That's hardly supported by the propogation of sex in popular media.


Since when did attitudes portrayed by Popular media become something to emulate, or to trust?  Popular media is not only the representation of popular opinion, but a shaper of it.  And any entertainment appeal to unrestrained desire, is apt to be popular, because of our weaknesses, not our strengths.  Proof of this is the fact that many people will watch graphic portrayals of a sexual nature, and yet wouldn't do those things themselves.  The label "entertainment" allows us (often in an unhealthy way) to lay our convictions aside without abandoning them by a more visible action, and to change them (or have them changed for us) ever so slowly.  There's a reason that the journey from Elvis' scandalous hips on Ed Sullivan, to the practically pornographic MTV has been a somewhat gradual one. Leaven needs time to work.  My point?  Popular media doesn't necessarily represent the healthiest views of society, but sometimes the ones most suited for instant gratification ... something which even amoralistic (allegedly) egoism recognizes as unprofitable.  Actually morality just goes a step beyond egoism and explains the why.  
    
quote:
There is true, high value in that relationship, but it doesn't negate the value in a less meaningful, casual relationship, only provides a contrast.



I am only expressing the proper relational framework of sex.  I am not devaluing "casual" relationships, if you mean friendship.  Rather I am speaking against a casual approach to sex.  

Neither Am I suggesting that friendship is not in it's own way, just as profound as an intimate marriage relationship.    


Stephen.  
Juju
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115 posted 03-22-2007 07:51 PM       View Profile for Juju   Email Juju   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Juju's Home Page   View IP for Juju

Intimacy can be presant between friends.  I took a class on intimacy jeesh....

-Juju

-Juju

-"So you found a girl
Who thinks really deep thougts
What's so amazing about really deep thoughts " Silent all these Years, Tori Amos

Edward Grim
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116 posted 03-22-2007 07:56 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

"just because your brother doesn't demonstrate using intelligence/wisdom in a more judgemental and thoroughgoing way throughout his life doesn't at all mean he has no judgement or ability to judge or improve."

Ha, you obviously don't know my brother.

And what of my "old hick/wise man" reference? What about those men that have all the wisdom one could want but can't spell correctly, can't speak properly, can't handle complicated or even simplified mathematical equations, or can't even form a complete sentence?

Just because I have a motorcycle doesn't mean I have a helmet. Let's say the bike represents intelligence and the helmet is wisdom. You can ride a motorcycle without a helmet but it's not a good idea.

What about child prodigies? These kids are smarter than you, me and Ron combined. Do you really think these kids are wise? Do you think they have good judgment? You can't possibly, they're only children.

"No one is just a knowledge-processor."

I beg to differ.

Head Cheese & Chicken Feet

Edward Grim
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117 posted 03-22-2007 08:04 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

"No one is just a knowledge-processor."

Need I mention Kim Peek?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Peek
Essorant
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118 posted 03-22-2007 08:14 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

"Do you think they have good judgment?"

In some things yes, in other things no.  If one drives a motorcycle well, then he/she has both good skill and judgement as far as driving the motorcycle.  But if one doesn't wear a helmet, I wouldn't say he/she has good skill and judgement in that respect about safety and taking precautions.

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119 posted 03-22-2007 08:21 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

quote:
Popular media is not only the representation of popular opinion, but a shaper of it.
Progression? By agreeing that media is a reflector of popular opinion, you've negated your stance that the majority of people recognize sex as more than a "thrill ride."

And - I should have been more clear - I DID mean casual sex, not simply friendship. I respect others for their desire (if it IS a conscious desire and not a carry-over cross on the shoulders from a forcibly imposed morality) to maintain monogomous sexual relationships throughout their lives, foregoing the temptation of casual sex. I feel, however, that if you put two consenting adults together and they want to have some physical, casual fun, there's nothing wrong with it. From a pragmatic perspective, it warrants one to be cautious (diseases), but in no way demeans or lessens their value as a person or a friend. It's just fun, kind of like having a good bowling game is fun. I think the problems around sex tend from those who make it out to be too big of a deal than it really is. Sex is just sex.
Edward Grim
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120 posted 03-22-2007 08:24 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

You're ignoring my key points.

And what would a child have "good judgment" in?
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121 posted 03-22-2007 10:13 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

When a child makes a good choice or does well at something.  From putting the right sock on the right foot or the left on the left foot, to brushing the teeth, to saying "thank you", to sharing a toy with a friend that doesn't have one, trying to stay in the lines when colouring a picture.  You may say these things are just memory and mechanism, but I won't be able believe it.  

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122 posted 03-22-2007 10:32 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

"From putting the right sock on the right foot or the left on the left foot, to brushing the teeth"

LOL, clearly we're talking about two different things. Because if you think putting a sock on and brushing your teeth constitutes as wisdom then I have nothing more to say.

And still you ignore my key points. Is it because they prove your theory wrong?
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123 posted 03-22-2007 11:59 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Christopher:
quote:
Progression? By agreeing that media is a reflector of popular opinion, you've negated your stance that the majority of people recognize sex as more than a "thrill ride."


Not really.  I think it may reflect more what producers know will sell.  And judging from a great tendency of people to watch as a fascination (representationally) what they would disagree with in actuality, shows that popular media may be more an expression of our baser tendencies (agreed with morally or not).  Remember Christopher, that I believe that the biggest problem we all have is not immoral or incorrect beliefs (though I don't deny this possibility), but acting against what we actually already approve of in our saner states of mind ... acting contrary to our own standards, and then half-convincing ourselves that it's okay after the fact in a kind of fig-leaf fashion.  The majority of people really do recognize to some degree that casual sex is not a good choice, whether or not they indulge.


quote:
I respect others for their desire (if it IS a conscious desire and not a carry-over cross on the shoulders from a forcibly imposed morality) to maintain monogomous sexual relationships throughout their lives, foregoing the temptation of casual sex.


I'm not speaking of morality as forcibly imposed.  There is the very real free option of acting wrongly as opposed to rightly.  This freedom however doesn't preclude recognizing which is which, and recognizing morality as obligatory if not inexorable.  Obligatory and "forced" are not the same.  I am obliged to tip a waitress that served me well, or to keep my appointments.  That doesn't mean someone is forcing me to do so.


The thing is, when you speak of desires, as opposed and conflicting, there has to be an arbiter between the two beyond the mere grip of desire ... and that is where morality comes in.  The very fact that you spoke of forgoing "temptation" tells me that there is a recognized standard, in which one way is really better (ethically and practically), and in which the other is a diversion or ambush.    


quote:
I feel, however, that if you put two consenting adults together and they want to have some physical, casual fun, there's nothing wrong with it. From a pragmatic perspective, it warrants one to be cautious (diseases), but in no way demeans or lessens their value as a person or a friend.


I think you are talking yourself out of a possessed insight you already have ... namely that such casual rendezvous of a sexual nature, complicate a "friendship" in a way it was never meant to be, and will (by it's very nature) lead to problems.  The emotional powers of sexuality are geared toward that understanding, like it or not.  And if this nature or quality of sex is denied, in the guise of a cheap thrill, one will acknowledge sooner or later that it wasn't helpful to friendship, but hurtful.  


There's a reason why "fornication" and "adultery" have been viewed in the particular way they have been, beyond the avoidance of disease.  These personal, emotional, and spiritual realities surrounding sex are ignored only at a significant cost.


Don't you think derogatory terms like "loose", "womanizer", and the like, though possibly uncharitable if said in the wrong way (and for the wrong reason), have a truth behind the words?  By your harmless view of casual sex, you would have to say "no".


quote:
It's just fun, kind of like having a good bowling game is fun. I think the problems around sex tend from those who make it out to be too big of a deal than it really is. Sex is just sex.



It's the "just" part of your last sentence which saddens me ... and really presents the strongest argument against it's own conclusion.  


I'm curious (if you are married) how your wife might respond if you told her plainly that sex was "just sex".  


Stephen.      

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (03-23-2007 12:11 AM).]

Edward Grim
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124 posted 03-23-2007 12:33 AM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

So Chris, are you saying that sodomy and soccer are just two casual pastimes?

Damn, and I thought sex was supposed to be special.

You know what that means? I can become a monk now. Hell, I won't be missing out on much. Right? I'll just play soccer or foosball.
 
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