Is Temptation an Outmoded Concept?

Henry Makow – revised from Sept 2011

Most people act like the concept of “temptation” is a relic of a bygone era.
Yet in their hearts, I think they know the concept has never been more timely and urgent than it is today.
A woman asked a newspaper  advice column recently:
“I’ve been in a relationship for many years with the same guy. I love him, but I’ve recently discovered I might be more attracted to members of the same sex. Should I tell him? Should I end it? Is there something psychologically wrong with me?”
The psychologist Dr. Joti Samra replied:
“First and foremost, there is absolutely nothing that is psychologically wrong with you for having questions about your sexual orientation…. One’s true sense of sexual orientation is not a choice … If you feel that your partner is someone you could talk to openly, and without judgment, you could certainly gently raise the issue with him.”
This lady has a passing fancy for other ladies. No wonder, the media is full of it. It’s the latest thing. So she raises it with her boyfriend. If he isn’t also brain-dead, he will not be happy to learn that his future wife, and the mother of his children, his rock and solace, is a closet lesbian.
Wouldn’t it be smarter to shut up and let it pass?
Do we have to indulge every attraction we feel, even if it is destructive to us and the people we supposedly love?
Say she were attracted to other men. Should she act on that too? Discuss it with him?  Most heterosexuals are sexually attracted to many members of the opposite sex. But if they are already committed to someone they care about, they repress it. They recognize it as temptation.
Suppose this woman was sexually attracted to children? Would the psychologist OK that as well? 
“One’s true sense of sexual orientation is not a choice..”  Believe me, this kind of logic leads to pedophilia. After that, bestiality.
People will resist eating fats and sugars because they are unhealthy. But they think nothing of indulging toxic and self-destructive desires.
True religions see man as the interface between spirit (God) and matter (animal.)  Man is like a little boy (spirit) riding an elephant (body.) He must restrain his animal instincts.  He must be able to recognize temptation and resist it.
There are two possible strategies. One is to show the elephant that the thing it wants is not that great. Is this really worth pining for? It’s ultimately drab and boring. It’s best if the temptation is discredited and disappears. 
If that doesn’t work, and the temptation grow more powerful, one must quit cold turkey. Otherwise, the temptation can lead to self-destruction. 



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