Chapter 5.6 Lust

As we continue with looking at the seven deadly sins …..


“I’ve looked on many women with lust. I’ve committed adultery in my heart many times. God knows I will do this and forgives me.”
Jimmy Carter     39th President, United States

Let’s switch gears and go to Lust, one of the seven deadly sins.  Every book has to have a little bit of sex.   Now, Lust is formally defined in Webster’s as “pleasure, delight; usually intense sexual desire.”   Not bad so far.

My first thought is that this “deadly sin” was probably identified by a puritanical society, during a time of self-deprivation and guilt. It was a chance for the supposed religious entities to invoke Fear in the average people that were having some fun.  What’s wrong with a little pleasure and delight every now and then?

Further thought however, led me to realize that there is good Lust and bad Lust.  Good Lust is one of those earthly pleasures that probably makes this place Earth so popular.  It is one of those rare activities where all five of your senses can (sometimes) be experienced at once …. (I’ll give you a moment so you can count through all five in your experiences.)

“Was it as good for you as it was for me?”
Anonymous (Adam?)

Bad Lust is the intense desire that is too extreme.  It can be gluttonous, addictive, degrading, none of which leads to good. Bad Lust can also be one-sided, and when not reciprocated, it definitely generates negative energy.  This Lust is directed more at personal gratification, and less about couple pleasure and delight.

“Will you respect me in the morning?”
Somebody (Eve?)

So perhaps the difference comes down to this:  Bad Lust equals sex and desire without respect.  Now you notice that I didn’t say sex without love.  Those casanovas and vixens out there may rationalize that she/he really loved him/her in the moment, and maybe that’s okay.  It kind of comes down to the occasion being agreeable to both parties.

“If one wants another only for some self-satisfaction, usually in the form of sensual pleasure, that wrong desire takes the form of lust rather than love.”
Mortimer J. Adler(1902-2001)   American Philosopher/Educator

Good Lust is like a trip to a new place, and it’s important that you share the experience with someone you like.  But like a vacation trip, no one wants to hear the details  …. or see pictures.


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