Pornography

mannaRoots of Pornography
It is my observation that everything we experience in life, and our reaction to these experiences, is rooted in what we received from our mothers and what they were experiencing while carrying us in the womb, set in the framework of the combined hereditary blueprint to which both of our parents contributed equally.

Much research has been done on this in recent years, and the results are conclusive that a baby in the womb is being directly affected by everything that is going on in his immediate environment, and that this will set the stage for his continuing development in the years ahead. This is not to say that these early life experiences preclude all further personal development, or prevents a person from being able to choose new pathways of thinking and behavior, but it does present a formidable challenge to all of us to examine our choices and make sure we are choosing, and not just reacting.

The Bible supports this in many ways, and makes it clear that unless we experience a rebirth and spiritual renewal, we cannot enter the kingdom of heaven. Our carnal natures are too much in the ascendancy, and the control centers of the brain will win out unless we have help from above.

David gives us some fascinating insights on the influence of the experiences in the womb. In Psalms 139:13-17, we read: “You created my inmost being (Heb.= mind); you knit me together in my mother’s womb…. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”

Doesn’t the thought intrigue you that your life was mapped out by God before you lived even one day of it? This could help to explain why the Bible talks about a time near the end of this world’s history when God will open the books of heaven (Dan. 7:9, 10; 26-28) and compare the blueprint He has written for each individual, with what was actually accomplished during their lives? And isn’t it wonderful that through the life and sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ and His blood shed for us, we can, no matter how far we have fallen from the original plan, come back into full harmony with God!

Jesus speaks of these matters in Matt. 12:33-36: “A tree is recognized by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.” (Rev. 20: 12, 15.)

Perhaps when Jesus said these things He was thinking of the words of David in Psalms which indicate that these predispositions begin even at birth.

“Even from birth the wicked go astray; from the womb they are wayward and speak lies. Their venom is like the venom of a snake, like that of a cobra that has stopped its ears, that will not heed the tune of the charmer.” Ps. 58:3-5.

But there are those fortunate individuals like Jesus, Samuel, John the Baptist, and many others, who have had the advantage of godly parents who lead them to God from their earliest moments, and they learn to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit even from birth. Because of this they can testify: “You brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you even at my mother’s breast. From birth I was cast upon you; from my mother’s womb you have been my God.” Ps. 22:9, 10.

Does this mean, then, that those who have such advantages have an easier road to travel to the heavenly kingdom? In some ways, yes. Otherwise, it would make no sense to raise our children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, and make whatever sacrifices necessary to provide every opportunity for them to accept the Lord Jesus as their Savior, and lead a life of purity and nobility. But in other ways, we are all one with the great web of humanity.

Our carnal natures, unchecked by the power of grace, will lead us all to reject God and eventually fall to the lowest levels of depravity. When all is said and done, God holds each of us accountable to Him for the opportunities we have had to choose life and be born of the Spirit and not the flesh. Examples are abundant in Scripture and in history of those who have had extraordinary advantages, yet did not take advantage of them for their soul’s salvation.

Conversely, others who have come from the greatest deprivation have risen above it and lived exemplary lives of service and morality. In the end, the choice is up to us, for we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God, and all must be born again of the water and the Spirit (John 3:5-7) in order to have life eternal with our precious Lord.

But what does all of this have to do with pornography? In order to answer this, I will need to transport you back to the womb experience of each baby boy. Researchers tell us that around the 5th month of pregnancy, the body signals between mother and baby tell the glandular secretions regulating the male hormone, testosterone, to wash over the brain of the baby boy, thus creating a different womb experience than that of a baby girl.

When this testosterone wash happens, the brain of the little boy is forever different than that of a little girl. This wash slightly separates the right and left hemispheres of the brain, and causes the neuron pathway connection called the corpus collosum to be smaller in diameter, and thus less accessible to the rapid transmissions between the two hemispheres.

In addition, testosterone seems to influence the choice of the male to prefer left hemisphere thinking and choose that as “home base,” or the type of thinking and problem-solving that is natural to the left side of the brain, while little girls prefer right-hemisphere as “home base,” thus creating innate differences in the way we see and relate to life from then on.

Left hemisphere emphasizes linear thinking, with a clear sense of leadership, authority, structure, goals, time, and specialization. Right hemisphere is holistic and emphasizes fine-tuning in relationships, perception of intuitive truth, sensitivity to emotional factors, awareness of interrelationship of details, and spiritual intuitions and connectedness with God.

As is immediately apparent, we all need a proper balance of these two hemispheres; but in the omnipotent wisdom of God, we find that for His eternal purposes, we must work at cooperating with each other, and choose to be tolerant and understanding in order to produce an atmosphere where love and emotional safety can flourish.

Unfortunately, this is often not the case. And in the volatile atmosphere of today’s society, we often find that families fall short of the goal of creating a home environment where there is peace and safety for each individual. In many homes, there is a breakdown in the family structure, resulting in loss of individuality, personal respect, and freedom to feel accepted and appreciated.

Now, let’s create a hypothetical example where a problem with pornography can develop. We will look in on a home where there is a lack of warmth and emotional connectedness between the husband and wife, and perhaps feelings of rejection and/or estrangement between one or both. This can easily produce a climate where the mother of a little boy can take out her frustrations on the child who is of the same sex as her rejecting (or rejected) husband - thus passing on a sense of estrangement and rejection to the son, even though he is not the primary offending party. His maleness or likeness to his father is the primary offense, and thus he becomes the scapegoat of the mother’s anger or resentment.

Every child, male or female, needs the warm affection and acceptance of both parents to become a healthy individual, and when this is broken or lacking, the negative results are sure to be forthcoming. One must find this acceptance and love somewhere, even if for a fleeting moment of surrogate pleasure in a dream world relationship of secret lust.

For the moment it satisfies something deep within the soul of the seeker. But it is only for a moment, and then it is gone, leaving the emptiness of the experience to drive the person to seek the experience again in an endless and futile search for permanency of connectedness, and the satisfaction of knowing that someone loves with a love that can be trusted.

And what does the womb have to do with the problem of pornography? Imagine, if you will, what the first five months of a baby boy’s life might be like. It is soft, and safe, and everything is provided automatically. There is the gentle rhythm of the mothers movements, the constant supply of nourishment, and the awareness of connectedness to the mother’s heart and mind flowing in. And then the testosterone wash takes place. Something is different. Mother is somehow not quite as accessible. But it is all right. Her love is still there. Her body is still there. He is still connected.

But what happens when he comes out of that safe environment and finds that her love and acceptance is NOT there, NOT the same? Maybe it is not in babyhood. Maybe it happens later in his childhood. What then? Where does he turn for assurance that it is all right to be a boy, a male, a man?

The pictures take him back. The eyes speak of desire for him alone; the body reminds him of the safety of the womb; the breasts remind him of constant sustenance and nurturing. It satisfies for a little while. But it never fixes anything, really. It is a quick fix; a lonely, desperate attempt to be the loved one, the nurtured one, the only one who mattered to the most important woman in his life - his mother.

Of course, this is just one example of how pornography can become a temptation. Feelings of estrangement can happen at any time and in many ways throughout our life’s journey. Loneliness, anxiety, fear, stress, and insecurity are emotions which all have experienced at one time or another. But there seems to be one common denominator in the drive to indulge in visual sex for stimulation and satisfaction, and that is a deep need for connectedness with primordial intimacy and unconditional acceptance.

Pornographic pictures purport to do this without any change on the part of the beholder. All one has to do to receive the illusion of intimacy and acceptance is to look, and enter the dream world of immediate satisfaction.

Is there hope of healing for the sufferer of the pornographic habit? Yes, of course. Like any other problem caused by sin, there is hope in a love more transcendent than human beings know - the love of a God who cared so much He gave His only Son to prove it. Connectedness with Him heals the most desperate conditions sin can produce, and wipes away the pain of loneliness and rejection.

But there is also healing in the love and acceptance that we as human beings can give each other as we receive it from God (for we can never produce it ourselves), and then wrap our arms around each other and show the kind of love and steadfast loyalty to each other that was never there for the wounded one who is acting out his brokenness in carnal ways. It may take time; it may be painful and discouraging. Not everyone may want to walk the pathway of healing with us. But for those who do, we can be an avenue for the healing love of God to flow into the heart of another person, and see them grow beyond the hurts of their childhood.

I don’t know where you are in your walk with God, but I am learning more each day to trust and love Him. We all are wounded; we have all suffered from the pain of living in an imperfect, unloving environment, at least to varying degrees. I have suffered abuse, fear, rejection, depression, family problems, loss of my earthly goods, and many more things in my short walk in this life.

But it all seems so small, so insignificant when I compare these things with the love of my Savior and the joy of walking with Him, seeing His miracles, experiencing His healing, and looking forward to His soon coming. The love I feel for Him and for those around me is growing day by day, and with it the healing of my own soul and spirit. There is an eagerness for life, a security that is beyond any reason, except that He is faithful. And we can share in that for all eternity, can’t we? What more can we ask!