Monday, November 17, 2014

The Difference between Art and Pornography

This morning I came to a realization about pornography. I have wondered why it is so addictive and what separates art from pornography. I believe I have found some answers for myself.

First, why is pornography so addictive? I believe that pornography is so addictive because it fulfills unrelated needs for a short time. It uses shock value to reel you in and pretty soon you can't feel anything without it being progressively more shocking. The most shocking thing about it is that you feel something for a person/image that has no personality. (I am not saying that porn stars are lifeless drones, I am saying the roles they portray in their videos and photo shoots have no personality, nothing realistically emotional to bond with.) This means that those who watch pornography are getting an emotional/sexual release without the accompanying emotional support/bonding of being with a person who loves them. It is equivalent of trying to perform heart surgery with a great sword and stitches with a 21 gauge hypodermic needle. You cause more damage than healing. So this leads to another question: why is it so hard to let go of?

In my experience it is so hard to let go of pornography because it begins to affect your entire emotional and physiological system. Pornography creates an addiction to naturally occurring hormones in your body. You literally become addicted to yourself. The problem is that we are not meant to be solitary creatures. God created Adam and Eve and married them so that they would have help meets, someone to support them in every righteous endeavor. Our bodies are designed to create bonds with those we love. If we start creating that bond with no one on the other end we begin to constantly miss someone who never existed because they only exist in our fantasies.

So now comes question number two: what separates art from pornography? I have thought about this a lot and think I have finally come up with an answer. Art creates a genuine emotion, a connection to the subject. For example, a book that has characters who jump off the page are alive. You can imagine having a conversation with them that is real about their habits and hobbies. You learn about them and create new ideas and understandings. Pornography has no character. It merely has images used to inspire lust, not companionship. Lust consumes, character builds. Pornography is made up of isolated moments of lustful passion. Art inspires the mind to discover new ideas and generates deep fulfilling conversation. Art tells a story. Pornography creates false expectations and ultimately robs us of our capacity to create.

I know that I have been very blunt and direct. I know some will be offended or troubled by what I have said. To you I say search your heart and ask yourself: Why am I offended? Why am I troubled? Then seek to find the answer.

I pray that those with open hearts will see some benefit to what I have written here. Until next time, Vaya con Dios!

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