12 Reasons most Christian men are hooked on porn and what to do about it

Street Theologian
28 min readSep 25, 2022

Source: Doc Goldernberg

Note: Non Christians may find this article just as helpful. This article is not medical or psychological treatment, should you wish to have some treatment or an assessment please speak to a qualified professional.

Subscribe to our Substack:

Want a short list of tips to quit porn?

Read these:

Or for a more detailed read:

In 5 years time do you want to be a slave to your sexual desires as you objectify women, have a lack of concentration and no control or be a focused, self controlled man with a genuine love for others including women? If it’s the latter, your awareness of this is the first step. Let’s start today.

A slave to animalistic desires or a man living with purpose?

A man always seeking sexual release or man always loving and serving others?

A man living with desperation and tension or a man living with contentment and freedom?

A man of the world or a man of God?

A man of lust or a man of love?

A man seeking to control that which he can’t or a man entrusting himself to God’s will and plan?

An emotionally unaware man driven by urges or a man who regularly examines his heart and mind?

A man who has lost the battle against his desires or a man who is victorious through Christ’s strength?

Who are you today and who do you want to be? Feel the pain of your own fallenness, own up to it, observe it.

Feeling guilty can help drive change, feeling shame not so much.

All of us have dark sinful desires and natures we would be ashamed of revealing to others. Let’s equally be unashamed of the fact we have shame in common and move forward.

As such, I encourage you to read this with an open mind. It is about improving that one little step from where you are today, not axing you down. If it was up to us and not Christ, none of us could save ourselves.

When we own our issues we can then start to heal. This is about healing, not shaming, rectifying not destroying. A journey of repentance and progress not humiliation.

The Stats

We have all heard of that pastor who delivers “great” sermons but is a pervert, the “nice” guy who goes to church every week yet is desperate for sex and somewhat depressed he is not getting it, that Christian husband with an insatiable sex drive who seems completely disconnected from his wife’s sexual desires, the young man with no energy or drive to do anything except play video games and watch porn in his room all day. According to Simon Lajeunesse, “Guys who do not watch pornography do not exist.” In 2009, when Lajeunesse tried to study porn’s impact he couldn’t find any college age males who weren’t using it.

The message the stats give us reinforce the above:

  • A 2016 Barna Group survey indicated 21% of youth pastors and 14% of pastors admit they struggled with using porn at the time of survey. 87% of pastors who used porn felt a great sense of shame about it while 55% of pastors who use porn claimed to live in constant fear of being discovered.
  • Proven Men 2016 pornography survey showed the number of Christian men viewing pornography nearly mirrors the national US average: 97% have viewed pornography, 64% view porn at least once a month, 37% look at porn several times a week.
  • 2017 paper Unbuckling the Bible Belt: A State-Level Analysis of Religious Factors and Google Searches for Porn concluding religious people are more likely to watch porn as less physical outlets are available to them: Our multivariate findings indicate that higher percentages of Evangelical Protestants, theists, and biblical literalists in a state predict higher frequencies of searching for porn, as do higher church attendance rates… Our findings support theories that more salient, traditional religious influences in a state may influence residents — whether religious or not — toward more covert sexual experiences.
  • Not all studies reach the same conclusion, however, with the Institute of Family Studies concluding in their study: Nominally-Protestant men are nearly five times more likely to view pornographic films as men who frequently attend religious services (more than weekly). And across all levels of religious attendance, Protestant men are about 5 to 10 percentage points less likely to have viewed porn in the last year.
  • More recent results are even more disturbing and note these results are prior to 2020–21 which saw a large spike in global porn usage. Freedom Fight explains: In 2019, the Freedom Fight conducted a survey of over 1300 Practising Christian college students from over thirty different campuses across the country. The men and women we surveyed were involved in a campus ministry, and they considered their faith in Christ to be very important to them. Many of them were leaders in their ministries. What we found was alarming. 89% of the growing Christian men we surveyed watch porn, at least occasionally. 61% view it at least weekly and 24% watch porn daily or multiple times a day. 51% of these men said they are addicted to porn.
  • A study of 4009 heterosexual scenes from two major free pornographic tube sites (Pornhub and Xvideos) concluded: Overall, 45% of Pornhub scenes included at least one act of physical aggression, while 35% of scenes from Xvideos contained aggression. Spanking, gagging, slapping, hair pulling, and choking were the five most common forms of physical aggression. Women were the target of the aggression in 97% of the scenes, and their response to aggression was either neutral or positive and rarely negative… the Xvideos Hardcore category had significantly more physical aggression against women.
  • Another study of 304 best selling porn scenes found: Of the 304 scenes analyzed, 88.2% contained physical aggression, principally spanking, gagging, and slapping, while 48.7% of scenes contained verbal aggression, primarily name-calling. Perpetrators of aggression were usually male, whereas targets of aggression were overwhelmingly female. Targets most often showed pleasure or responded neutrally to the aggression.
  • In January 2020, a US judge awarded $17.5 million in damages to 22 women who featured in GirlsDoPorn videos being exploited through sex trafficking. There are also multiple cases of women being raped for hours, experiencing heavy vaginal bleeding with nowhere to go while it was all being filmed. They then struggled to get their videos taken down. Read for example the story of Jane Doe .

Med News Today

With all that in mind let’s turn to why Christian men watch porn in the first place. Please note in using the word Christian I am not in any way shape or form suggesting this is Christ like behaviour or that all such people are or not true Christians, I am rather dealing with people who claim to be Christians. Ultimately we are saved by grace (Eph. 2:8–9, Acts 15:11, Romans 4:6, Romans 11:6, Luke 15, 1 Cor. 4:7), but true believing loyalty, true faith does also produce change and produce works and fruits.

Subscribe to our Substack:

https://streettheologian.substack.com/

Why Christian Men Watch Porn

(1) It’s enjoyable and you fear the pain of trying to stop- watching porn provides a huge dopamine hit and as such is something which is enjoyable in the moment. The limbic system of an addict craves and rewards a person for watching porn and causes them serious difficulty and pain for not watching it.

Utah Valley Psychology illustrates that on average pornography leads to a slightly higher dopamine hit that sex, increasing dopamine levels by slightly more than the 250% increase offered by sex. Pornography can also offer much more sustained increases of dopamine than sex over a 5 hour period with dopamine still over 250% above normal levels after 3 hours of porn compared to just over 150% for sex.

Further to the chemical aspect, humans naturally love sinning as they have a deceptive heart (Jer. 17:9), a sick head (Is. 1:5), are devoid of the Spirit (Jude 19), driven by greed, lust and pride (1 John 2:15–17) and under the sway of the evil one (1 John 5:19). Have you come to realise these facts about yourself or do you live in self deception pretending this is not really your nature?

2015 paper Neuroscience of Internet Pornography Addiction: A Review and Update, concluded that porn addiction fits into the addiction framework and shares the same mechanisms as substance addiction. The 3 stages of addiction outlined were binge/intoxication, withdrawal/ negative impact and preoccupation/ anticipation. Binge/ intoxication is linked to the Coolidge effect whereby someone watching porn gets a greater dopamine hit browsing through new videos which can also be more hardcore due to the fact new attractive women are being looked at rather than the same woman the whole time. This is part of the reason porn can be so addictive even compared to sex.

Porn addiction researcher Dr. Gary Wilson noted, trying to withdraw from porn can lead to headaches, irritability, frustration, dizziness, shaking and much more, particularly in the first week of trying to stop. It is no wonder many men don’t get past this stage as they continue to fall for the lies and tricks of their brain. Worthwhile pursuits are rarely easy.

Oh try next week you’re busy this week and can’t go to work with a headache, oh you’re tired this week go easy on yourself, oh you just got rejected so how else do you expect to satisfy your sexual desires, oh your wife is tired this week and you need to release semen somehow, oh you have too much tension and need a release..no one could possibly understand how much of a sexual urge you feel.. And on and on and on you lie to yourself.

(2) Brain chemistry- your body is reacting as if you are reproducing- you build attachments, you feel excited and your brain thinks it is doing what it needs to do to help you reproduce. Is this how you want to live? In a fake reality?

(3) Lack of meaning- addiction is one of the mass neuroses Viktor Frankl talked about in Man’s Search for Ultimate meaning along with depression and aggression and he argues it is inextricably linked with a lack of meaning in one’s life. Not sure how to spend your night after work so you watch porn, struggling to make sense of events or difficulties in life so you watch porn, struggling to achieve what you want in work or socially so you watch porn to feel better.

You use it to help cover the emptiness within but it is much like a shovel which goes to fill a void with soil only to fall into the void itself and deepen it. You use it to heal emptiness but it leaves you more empty. You keep shattering glass onto your hand to pour water into a glass with no bottom and which continues to cut your hand in the process.

A 2017 study outlining Pornography Use and Depressive Symptoms: Examining the Role of Moral Incongruence highlighted links between pornography and depression especially for religious people:

For male porn users who morally reject it, pornography use predicts depressive symptoms at low frequencies, likely stemming from cognitive stress or dissonance. For those who do not morally reject porn, however, only viewing it at the highest frequencies is associated with higher levels of depressive symptoms, which suggests reverse causation — depressed men likely view higher levels of pornography as a coping aid, especially when they do not view it as immoral.

Moreover, a 2020 study on university students Compulsive Internet Pornography Use and Mental Health: A Cross-Sectional Study in a Sample of University Students in the United States found a significant relationship between pornography and mental health:

Our analyses indicate a significant relationship between mental health and pornography use, including behaviors reflecting behavioral addictions, highlighting the necessity for a better understanding and consideration of the potential contribution of internet pornography to negative mental health among university students.

(4) Selfishness- Kierkegaard remarked paradoxically that the “door to happiness opens outward”- serving others and living in accordance with one’s conscience. For the porn addict however the door to pleasure and the door to darkness are one and the same. You focus on your tension release, prioritise your brain chemicals over spending time on meaningful pursuits, spending time exercising self control, getting closer to God or helping others. Instead of loving and serving others, you objectify them, viewing women who are sexually abused as sex objects for your pleasure only to broaden and deepen the grave for your soul.

A true man esteems women highly (Phil. 2:3–4), seeks to serve them sacrificially in an understanding manner (1 Peter 3:7) and views his time on earth as a gift from God not a resource to be trashed on porn sites nightly as his physical, mental and spiritual health take a hit. He knows adultery will destroy him (Prov. 6:32) and lusting after women on porn sites is no different to mentally fornicating or committing adultery (Matt. 5:27–28). 1 Peter 2:11 speaks of the passions of the flesh which wage war on the soul, 2 Peter 2:11–14 speaks of false teachers overwhelmed by lust as being irrational animals, creatures of instinct, having eyes full of adultery and unsteady souls. Jude 10–16 also speaks of false teachers who indulge in their own lusts as being irrational animals. With that in mind will you go one click closer to your own destruction or will you plead to God for mercy and to transform your heart?

It is no surprise then that the selfishness behind pornography has linkages with the objectification of and violence against women as illustrated in the following two papers:

There is a growing body of research that supports the notion that pornography is related to the sexual victimization of women… Overall, the findings of this research support the idea that there is a relationship between pornography and violence against women. 2000 Paper Exploring the Connection Between Pornography and Sexual Violence

The present research highlights the importance of considering violent pornography exposure as a potential risk factor for TDV (teen dating violence). 2019 study The Association Between Exposure to Violent Pornography and Teen Dating Violence in Grade 10 High School Students

(5) Failure to examine oneself- neurotic people respond to urges animalistically, cannot tame anger and often feel inescapably trapped. As such, they are ensnared by their urges and unable to detach themselves from the chemicals in their head. We can observe our minds.

Examining yourself is commanded in Scripture and you cannot confess for specific sins if you do not look deep inside to actually see what your dark motives and desires are. This is not to say you aren’t forgiven only that more work is needed for you to flourish. Note the following verses:

Lamentations 3:40: Let us test and examine our ways, and return to the LORD!

Haggai 1:5: Consider your ways

2 Cor 13:5: Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? — unless indeed you fail to meet the test!

Colossians 3:5: Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.

Galatians 5:24: And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

Henry David Thoreau lived as a single man in the wilderness. He spoke of the beauty of chastity and putting animalistic desires to death.

Here are a few quotes from Henry David Thoreau who wrote Walden and an Essay on Chastity and Sensuality:

All lusts or base pleasures must give place to loftier delights.

Yet the spirit can for the time pervade and control every member and function of the body, and transmute what in form is the grossest sensuality into purity and devotion. The generative energy, which, when we are loose, dissipates and makes us unclean, when we are continent invigorates and inspires us. Chastity is the flowering of man; and what are called Genius, Heroism, Holiness, and the like, are but various fruits which succeed it. Man flows at once to God when the channel of purity is open. By turns our purity inspires and our impurity casts us down. He is blessed who is assured that the animal is dying out in him day by day, and the divine being established.

Many Christians would notice a similarity between Thoreau’s emphasis on replacing sensual pleasures with purity and devotion and the Apostle Paul’s emphasis on singleness in 1 Corinthians 7 (eg. 1 Cor 7:32–33).

It is crucial to note, however, Paul still advises marriage as a means of managing sexual urges for people who lack self control (1 Cor. 7:5). Nonetheless, Paul’s emphasis in marriage is that the two people in a marriage should think of each other’s sexual needs, not be animalistic or selfish but both prioritising the needs of the other in a selfless and sacrificial manner (1 Cor 7:3). This means men must prioritise their wives sexual desires above their own as a man’s wife has authority over his body not himself (1 Cor. 7:4). Hence, any instances where a man forces his wife to have sex are completely against the spirit of this passage and the New Testament as a whole. The command for all Christians to crucify their lusts remains, whether married or not (Colossians 3:5; Galatians 5:24). The emphasis is service and love in sex not animalistic self indulgence.

We are asked to put the flesh to death, put lust to death yet how can we kill that which has not been identified within us?

Want a short list of tips to quit porn?

Read this:

(6) Doubting the work of the Spirit- it’s easy for us to think the power of our urges beats the power of the Spirit. God can change a lot of things but he can’t stop my lust or porn addiction you might say to yourself. Ask yourself do you really genuinely believe Jesus died for your sins and rose from the dead, defeating death and darkness to usher in his new kingdom? Is there a purpose and beauty to the universe or even parts of your life? If yes, surely beating your porn addiction is mere child’s play.

(7) Poorly managed attention- as psychiatrist Dr. Iain McGilchrist highlights below we are the product of where we focus our attention.

By paying a certain kind of attention, you can humanise or dehumanise, cherish or strip of all value.

Attention is a moral act: it creates, brings aspects of things into being, but in doing so makes others recede.

Paul emphasises this in Philippians 4:8 when he talks about focusing your attention on noble, pure, true and lovely things. Focus your attention on a colleague or church congregations members breasts or figure and don’t expect the rest of your life to fall into place easily. Build deep concentration and focus on meaningful things through discipline don’t wander, be thrown around and lack direction. Even if it means exercising a little or reading a little or journalling a little everyday. Do something focused at least for a bit. Learn to be still and know who God is (Psalm 46:10).

Being a Christian is much like being a boxer, a soldier (Eph. 6:10–20), a diligent farmer (Matthew 9:38), an Olympic athlete (1 Cor 9:24–27, 1 Tim 4:7). Hard training. Determination. Grit. Hard work. Persistence. Focused attention.

(8) Thinking you can’t control yourself- you lose the battle before it starts for you say it’s impossible to win. Are you then to make yourself an animal driven purely by chemical urges or a bag of meat fizzing away to chemical reactions? Absolutely not! You’re intelligent, you have a mind, you have a will. Build that muscle of self control. Fruits take a while to grow, works take a minute to complete. Lust is a work of the flesh, self control is a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5).

Start where you are at. You won’t regret it. Cultivate character, you move from glory to glory (2 Cor. 3:16–18), it is a gradual process which requires daily sacrifice and commitment to Christ’s cause (Luke 9:23). Start where you are at, realise it takes time, baby steps and progress, over giant goals and no progress. Progress. Consistent effort. As Gary Wilson, author of Your Brain on Porn highlights, your brain is like plastic, change is possible.

It could take months to heal or change but be patient and know change is possible.

Interestingly Wilson noted in his TedX talk:

Guys in their early twenties aren’t regaining erectile health as quickly as older guys (4–5 months for younger men v 2 months for older men). How can a 50-year-old get his mojo back faster than a 20-something? Answer: even though the older guys used porn far longer, they didn’t start with today’s highspeed internet porn. We know this is the key variable — because older users don’t develop porn-related sexual problems until after they get high-speed Internet.

Subscribe to our Substack:

https://streettheologian.substack.com/

(9) Shame which fuels more addiction- ok you released again to porn, you’re hopeless so you tell yourself. The redemption story lies ahead, put perspective on it. You might fail again but being aware of the issue is the first step. Jesus died, we killed him with our sin. He was shamed for you. Live in gratitude to him now for to have received a great gift will shape how you respond.

(10) Lack of knowledge or understanding of benefits of retention and avoiding porn compared to sex- Most men believe there is no benefit to retaining. They ignore the increased self control, confidence, drive, determination, energy and focus they get from it. They ignore the dangers of excessively releasing semen which is absolutely packed with vital nutrients. Ultimately, you should avoid porn out of love for God and others but understanding some of the benefits of avoiding it can help make the journey a bit easier.

Non Christians have long realised the benefits of semen retention even going back as far as Hippocrates, the father of medicine. In terms of modern times from age 40 until his death Sigmund Freud was celibate “in order to sublimate the libido for creative purposes,” according to his biographer Ernest Jones. Nikola Tesla invented many marvellous things and remarked in a 1935 interview, “I certainly could not have survived it if I had permitted my energies to be diverted into the channels of sex.” Steve Jobs’ former girlfriend Chrisann Brennan confirmed he would avoid ejaculating during sex to conserve his “vital energies.” Muhammad Ali was known to not ejaculate 6 weeks before a fight.

What about science you might say?

Before we get to more recent science, it is interesting to note Dr. Wichman’s remarks in 1772,”All the patients observed by me were from twenty-five to forty years old. All were addicted to the pleasures of love, or to onanism…. When you see a man extremely thin, pale, stupid, enervated, complaining of great debility, especially in the thighs and loins, lazy in his actions, and with sunken eyes, you have reason suspect this cause.”

More recently, Dr. R. W. Bernard in Science Discovers the Physiological Value of Continence (1957):

Continence is beneficial to the brain (for conserved lecithin from retained semen is a true brain food). Hence some of the greatest intellectual geniuses in ancient and modern times led continent lives. These include Pythagoras, Plato, Aristotle, Leonardo da Vinci, Spinoza, Newton, Kant, Beethoven, Herbert Spencer, etc… Leading physiologists, urologists, genito-urinary specialists, neurologists, psychiatrists, sexologists, gynecologists and endocrinologists endorse the physiological value of continence.

Swami Sivananda Saraswati of Rishikesh in the Monastic Life- Practice of Brahmacharya refers to 3 eminent European medical doctors who emphasised the fact the best blood in humans goes to form the elements of reproduction in both sexes with semen retention improving mental and physical vigour.

A 2005 paper The post-orgasmic prolactin increase following intercourse is greater than following masturbation and suggests greater satiety concluded that masturbation is far less satisfying than sex as sex leads to much higher levels of oxytocin which offset the dopamine hit:

The results are interpreted as an indication of intercourse being more physiologically satisfying than masturbation, and discussed in light of prior research reporting greater physiological and psychological benefits associated with coitus than with any other sexual activities.

2006 Paper High rates of sexual behavior in the general population: correlates and predictors outlined the benefits of sex being mostly positive on mental health while the effects of masturbation were mostly negative:

The results suggested that correlates of high rates of intercourse were mostly positive, whereas the correlates of high rates of masturbation and impersonal sex were typically undesirable. For both men and women, high rates of impersonal sex were related to separation from parents during childhood, relationship instability, sexually transmitted disease, tobacco smoking, substance abuse, and dissatisfaction with life in general.

A 2009 study Satisfaction (sexual, life, relationship, and mental health) is associated directly with penile-vaginal intercourse, but inversely with other sexual behavior frequencies reached a similar conclusion with an emphasis on penis vaginal intercourse having positive mental health impacts while other forms of sexual activity (including masturbation) have a negative impact:

For both sexes, multivariate analyses revealed that PVI (penis vaginal intercourse) frequency was directly associated with all satisfaction measures (part correlation = 0.50 with sexual satisfaction), masturbation frequency was independently inversely associated with almost all satisfaction measures, and noncoital sex frequencies independently inversely associated with some satisfaction measures (and uncorrelated with the rest).

Some men might respond that not masturbating leads to prostate cancer, however, this mainly applies to men over 50 and some studies have shown that for men in their 20s and 30s the inverse is true. Moreover, many doctors and researchers in the field will admit research is overall not conclusive and dependant on multiple variables.

Sexual activity and prostate cancer risk in men diagnosed at a younger age a 2008 paper concluded: Whereas frequent overall sexual activity in younger life (20s) increased the disease risk, it appeared to be protective against the disease when older (50s). Alone, frequent masturbation activity was a marker for increased risk in the 20s and 30s but appeared to be associated with a decreased risk in the 50s, while intercourse activity alone was not associated with the disease.

Hence, frequent masturbation at younger ages increases prostate cancer risk, while sexual intercourse has no impact on it.

There is also the famous study which showed testosterone increases by 45.7% after not ejaculating for a week.

(11) Sexual frustration- you make sex the goal of your life. Think about it 24/7. You then might fail to get as much as you want in real life and what’s next.. Porn and masturbation. Own your pain, admit to it, face up to it but don’t hide or suppress your desire to feel good by taking internet heroin and messing up your system.

(12) Lack of love for women and most of all God- Viktor Frankl wisely claimed “no human is a means to an end.” Yet, daily you view women as means to your pleasure and release. This can even be an issue for married loyal men, with many Christian women feeling their husbands use them for sex and ignore their needs which could partly explain why they are over twice as likely to suffer from vaginismus than their non Christian counterparts as highlighted in an interview run by Inspiring Philosophy’s Michael Jones. The end of all things is God’s glory (Romans 11:36, Psalm 115:3, Isaiah 43:25, Eph. 1:5) Not your release, not someone’s body parts, not your pleasure.

Fight The New Drug

WHY CHRISTIAN PURITY AND NOT ANOTHER RELIGIOUS SEXUAL PURITY?

You might say that is all well and good but what does this really have to do with Christianity? Contrary to popular belief that it is only Christianity which is “sexually repressive”, many religions with roots in the ancient times emphasised the importance of sexual discipline.

Taoism is big on semen retention and tantric sex where a man focuses on showing love to a woman rather than viewing her as a sex object or combination of body parts and as such is able to move sexual energy through his body rather than out of his body through ejaculation. This is interlinked with the idea of testicle breathing which a man uses to move pressure and tensions away from his testicles to the rest of his body. It is somewhat concerning that the likes of Jonathan White who teaches semen retention and Taoist principles through Sexual Kung Fu emphasise the importance of showing love to a woman not lusting after her in reducing the risk of premature ejaculation meanwhile many Christian men animalistically respond to their sexual urges and can often view their own wives as simply walking porn or a collection of body parts.

‘Where lusts and desires are deep, the springs of the heavenly are shallow’ -Chuang Tzu

Hinduism also values chastity and semen retention. In the Brahmacharya, retaining semen is said to increase your spiritual frequency and state of consciousness. Retaining semen is linked to your chakras or energy centres and boosts your overall energy flow within your body. Lust is associated with animalistic urges and reducing your spiritual frequency.

Even some modern New Age movements have emphasised the importance of semen retention, outlining the benefits it has on your concentration, love for others, energy levels, confidence levels and so forth. Jonathan White even compares the benefits of semen retention to microdosing on LSD and argues it reduces risk of excessive male hair loss as semen contains zinc and selenium which play a crucial role in hair growth.

If all this happens to be true and you can feel more fulfilled, more loving, more energetic, more confident, more focused, experience higher states of consciousness and have more hair than before without becoming a Christian, why do we need Christianity?

Assuming you consider yourself spiritual (this section is about different spiritual worldviews. If you don’t consider yourself spiritual check out the atheism section of our website or skip to the next part of this article), ask yourself if your source or the Ultimate Source is an impersonal energy or a personal conscious mind and being?

All truth is God’s truth. It is important to stress there is wisdom in all religions. All truth is God’s truth. This doesn’t however mean there are no differences with Christianity emphasising the work Christ does for humans saving them rather than humans saving or rediscovering themselves alone unaided.

Life force has a life source. Old Testament scholar Michael Heiser emphasises that ejaculations led to ritual impurity in levitical laws not longer observed in the New Testament as semen represents life force, life force comes from the life source who is God. Losing this life force signifies your impurity before a complete and perfect God. Is this life source energy or a mind?

Spiritual beings come from a Spiritual being. If you really are a spiritual being and a conscious mind, it would make more sense if you are caused by a spiritual being and a conscious mind rather than an unconscious energy. This would defy laws of logic. Does microwave energy show love or thermal energy have intentions or your mobile phone signal exercise choice? Energy is impersonal, being is personal.

Morals and principles don’t stem from random chaos or impersonal energy. Moral order in the universe, principles, decisions and choices are linked with personhood not an impersonal energy.

The Source can only be loving, intentional, moral and intelligent if it is a person not an energy. People love to talk about “the Source” and enjoying talking about love, being mindful, being intentional about how you spend your time and manage your energy, growing your intelligence and growing your creativity. Love, intentionality, intelligence, creativity and mindfulness are all inextricably linked to mind, consciousness and personhood not an impersonal energy.

You don’t express gratitude to an energy. Do you thank thermal energy or microwave energy or do you thank the person who bought you a microwave or the boss who chose to employ you? We thank persons, not energy. We thank conscious minds, not impersonal energy.

Consciousness and mind are fundamental to reality implying a mind must be behind all. As we’ve outlined in our 200 Questions for Sceptics and Truth Seekers, Nobel Prize physicists argued consciousness is fundamental to reality. This was echoed by many quantum physicists in response to the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, the Observer Effect and so forth. Thus, consciousness is the fundamental building block of reality, not an impersonal energy.

Energy is not a mind. Wind breezes don’t think, heat waves don’t reflect.

There was a time when the universe was not. If the universe is the fundamental reality, the ultimate state of existence, why did it have a beginning at the Big Bang? God, by definition is without beginning nor limited by the bounds of time.

Why couldn’t spiritual energy just flow from a spiritual being rather than having to be the source of all in and of itself? Have a think about this in light of the above.

Ok if you’re spiritual it makes more sense to think of a person behind it all. I am not at all saying you shouldn’t believe in evolution or anything like that, I am talking about Ultimate Source.

Given Ultimate Source is a person, how do you reach them and how do you fix yourself?

You didn’t choose where you were born, you didn’t decide the shape of your brain or body. As such, thinking you can be the God and centre of it all is fallacious.

You’re imperfect you know this.

If you quit porn purely for self glorification, for an ego boost or purely for benefits it offers you, you are making yourself bigger than God, the ultimate point of a worthwhile pursuit. While sure such an approach beats releasing your seed regularly to porn, it is ultimately still disconnected from the source of life, which is not you but someone greater.

There’s something bigger than yourself and you need to live as if that’s the case

Given you’re not the source of life and you’re imperfect, your way forward is to find the life and perfection offered by the personal being who is the ultimate source of life.

Christianity brings all this together with a God who is source of all, Christ who humbled himself temporarily from divinity to bear the sins of man and bridge the gap between the imperfection of man and the source of life, God.

As even Mahatma Gandhi admitted, “A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act. Jesus is ideal and wonderful, but you Christians — you are not like him.”

The question shouldn’t be why is Christianity so exclusive but why was God inclusive enough to send Jesus for us anyway?

For more on this read our other articles:

200 Questions for Sceptics and Truth Seekers

The Gratitude Myth: Affirm Goodness and Forget the Source

You’re a Christian because of your dad: Discussing Freud and the connection between belief and upbringing

Source: Health Journals

THE WAY FORWARD

There would be little point covering why issues exist without proposing a way forward. Here are some steps to make a way forward:

REAL GOALS AND BIG QUESTIONS

  • Recognise you ultimately are wasting your life, energy, spiritual vitality and moral core for pixels of skin tissue of someone you have never met and likely do not know the real name of.
  • Find an overarching meaning and purpose in life. If you have a why you can bear almost any how as Nietzsche said. Link your purpose to God’s glory and service of others while developing yourself in the process.
  • If you’re struggling also reach out to someone you trust or email streettheologian@protonmail.com

AWARENESS AND PRAYER

  • Admit to the full depths of your own darkness. No healing unless there’s ownership first.
  • Realise you are less pure than you would like to think.
  • Pray that God will shape your will to want to change while admitting the full depth of your sin to him and the need for Christ.
  • Recognise your works don’t save you but the Spirit can change you.
  • Recognise your brain is like plastic and needs rewiring and healing which takes time.
  • Record what is going on in your mind when you are tempted and build self awareness. Are you tired, lonely, hungry, disappointed, feel rejected etc?
  • Examine your heart and mind regularly. What are your motives? How do you respond when people talk to you? Etc.

HABITS AND DISCIPLINE

  • This is painful and tough and your brain and body may scream at you in the process.
  • It will get easier the longer you break away as your brain heals but never become complacent.
  • Foster creativity. Go to new destinations on the weekend, walk different routes, do new gym exercises, read new books, paint, draw, write, meet and call new people, explore different topics in the Bible, listen to classical music.
  • Your brain and body can adapt to being pure and breaking from addiction. It might sound impossible but many men have done it.
  • Ask yourself what or who you are a slave to, are you a free man? Being a slave to your sexual urges or your desire for a specific woman is unfortunately an animalistic form of existence.
  • Know that for your spiritual life to grow, the animal within must starve so don’t feed it.
  • Build momentum through a golden chain, one day at a time build continuity and consistency in new habits. Epictetus noted the importance of this.
  • Know that to get rid of an old habit you will need to build a new healthier one. Instead of watching porn 7pm nightly, go to the gym, call a friend, journal, run, read the Bible, build a business.
  • Track the benefits in your life which come from your changed habit and use this to fuel further progress (eg. more energy, healthier, more time on meaningful pursuits etc).
  • Focus on meaning and value not pleasure or external validation
  • Consider marriage as an option if you are single or grow your relationship with your wife is you are married but know no wife will satisfy all your sexual desires and if you’re single and you don’t beat your addiction now, getting married won’t fix it.

REDIRECT ENERGY

  • Re channel your sexual energy into other areas of life (eg. be creative, write, read, exercise hard, build, form new connections, start a new business).
  • Do something daily which challenges you and can help manage urges (eg. cold showers, cut out sugar or coffee, push ups, surfing, uphill sprints, talking to a new person, call someone you need to say sorry to etc etc).
  • Recognise this is both a spiritual and physical issue. Pray, read the Bible, go to Bible study etc but make sure you have a holistic approach to your Christian walk, getting enough sleep, eating well and focusing on healthy social environments.
  • Understand others around you are likely struggling in this area.

Life is short. Porn is destructive. You are a spiritual being. Do not let your animalistic urges overwhelm your spiritual walk with God. In the near future, you won’t regret stopping porn right now. Christ bore your shame so you can live in gratitude to him and experience true contentment, peace and joy. His life was an example of purity and love to all us, culminating in his sacrifice for us on the cross and the newness of life which rose from the darkest of depths.

If you do things for the greater cause of God’s glory and the love of others you will see the truth of Kierkegaard’s statement the door to happiness opens outwards.

Proverbs 16:32

Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty,

and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.

Want a short list of tips to quit porn?

Read this:

https://streettheologian.substack.com/

If you wish to subscribe to our newsletter, find out how you can grow our reach or discuss your porn addiction with us please do not hesitate to contact us at streettheologian@protonmail.com.

www.streettheologian.com

For more on this read our other articles:

200 Questions for Sceptics and Truth Seekers

The Gratitude Myth: Affirm Goodness and Forget the Source

You’re a Christian because of your dad: Discussing Freud and the connection between belief and upbringing

--

--

Street Theologian

Theology and apologetics for those who want to get their hands dirty