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Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

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Wife Shared Rim Job. Bbw loves sex. Gay Bottom Orgasm. Hardcore women with no legs fucking. Hot nude tumblr girls. Free full length hentai psp porn. Steve, I have followed your writings for many years, and have many of your books, but my brother, you have jumped off into the deep end of the pool and are floundering. You pound out suspicion and innuendo where Ure Concupiscent Arent U? is none to be found, and you are rapidly loosing all credibility - for what appears Ure Concupiscent Arent U? be professional jealousy. Christopher West is not the demon you relish in making him out to be; and you should spend some serious time in front of the Blessed Sacrament praying for the peace of heart that will keep you from continuing to spread this calumny. Johnyjoe, It ain't just me that say this. I've had bishops tell me quietly that they will never have Chris West in their dioceses Ure Concupiscent Arent U? they don't trust him. His own instructors have renounced him. Most of the theologians I know have serious concerns about him. Https://aclut.info/turkish/video9471-fudahix.php number of serious theologians I know of who support him can be counted on the fingers of two hands. The only people who are not in on the secret is the general public. West's words copied here alone are enough to turn source stomach. At this point anyone who still defends him at all is a dimwit. I said it. Thank you, Steve, for the thoughtful commentary. You shed sane Ure Concupiscent Arent U? on what is becoming a frightful cult in Ure Concupiscent Arent U?. Chris said: Single girls in houston Mongolia sexsy girls in bathroom.

Natalie Ure Concupiscent Arent U?. Grace works transforms who we are, but it takes awhile for us to catch up with our new capabilities. So, there are two ways to answer your question.

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First, a one year old has all the power in his legs, all the nerves, all the muscles, all the bone strength necessary to walk unimpeded.

But he has to practice how Ure Concupiscent Arent U? USE that power. That's why he falls down a lot - he has muscle concupiscence, the tendency to WANT to fall down, even though he has the power to stand. Similarly, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? grace of marriage instantly provides all the power to live out all the virtues but it takes a while Getting Naked Of Girls Video learn how to use that new power.

And this is part of the second point. If I am unmarried Ure Concupiscent Arent U? have not the graces of Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, then I will live out purity, chastity and modesty differently than when I am married.

Precisely because the unmarried man has less power, less grace, he CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his see more in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her.

Indeed, what is impure the night before the wedding becomes pure the night after the wedding. What is immodest Ure Concupiscent Arent U? night before becomes modest.

What is unchaste becomes chaste. West takes none of these things into account. He mocks them for recognizing their weaknesses, chastises them for exercising chastity, claims their attempts at purity are really a sign of their underlying impurity. Like snow-covered dunghills, the unmarried Ure Concupiscent Arent U? who choose to remain apart LOOK pure on the outside, says West, but on the inside they Ure Concupiscent Arent U? really Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

with charnel and dust! He's telling all of these young men and women that not only should, they be able to remain alone in a bedroom prior to marriage, but that anyone who advises them against doing so is the real sinner. This turns years of spiritual and moral counsel from the Church on its head. This man is denying the sacraments of the Church. He's denying the fallen nature of man.

clipporn ass Watch Video Watcha Hdoxxx. It's much harder to detect the heresy that way. That's why the man frightens me. He's good enough to be really, really dangerous. Kevin, You're right, it's clear what you meant. That's the problem. You have an either-or understanding of virtues. Take your bubble-gum example. The ability to ignore the bubble-gum means that you have increased your abilities in the virtue of prudence and restraint. It doesn't mean you don't need those virtues, it means you are growing in their power. He CAN'T grow in virtue by repeatedly and deliberately putting himself in a situation that's really only proper to a married person. Find me a saint of the Church who says you need to pursue near occasions of sin, or even not to worry about them, in order to grow in grace, and I'll agree with you. Oh, Kevin, funny you should bring up Francis and Clare. First, to answer your question, they were both under religious vows, which gave them graces to maintain their virtues. But, I heard Christopher West specifically call out St. Francis as an example NOT to follow because he threw himself into a rose bush in order to quiet his concupiscence. West claimed that this was a "disordered understanding of the theology of the body. So I'm very glad that you brought those two into the conversation. This all boils down to asking WHY is it prudent to avoid certain situations. It is prudent because of the likelihood that you will give in to temptation and sin. It isn't the mere possibility of sin that makes avoidance prudent, but the degree of likelihood. The possibility exists always and everywhere. Obviously some judgment is involved, and there is a grey area where it is unclear if the likelihood of sinning is large enough to warrant avoiding the situation. A big part of assessing the likelihood of sin is to take stock of your character. We never achieve perfection in this life, but we move towards perfection as we conform ourselves to Christ. That said, it seems perfectly obvious that as our hearts are more conformed to Christ, it becomes less and less likely that being a single person alone with a person of the opposite sex would lead to sin. At a certain point, it is no longer required by prudence to avoid the situation. And of course, some people have a longer journey to get to that point than others, depending on many things such as their personality and their history. You say that being alone with the person you are courting is "a situation that's really only proper to a married person. If it is improper, it is because the couple should avoid the near occasion of sin. That's the only reason that's been offered in this conversation, anyway. If it is the near occasion of sin, that is because it is a situation in which it is likely that the couple will actually sin meaning a sin distinct from the alleged sin of being alone together. And that all hangs, of course, on how likely it is, in reality, that they will sin. As with any case, the couple themselves are called to make a judgment about that likelihood. Note that this is not "pursuing near occasions of sin", it is evaluating whether one exists. So I repeat, you are begging the question. If I wanted to pursue a near occasion of sin, I would first have to determine that one existed, and then pursue it. Finally, you may judge, in your best estimation, that any unmarried couple being alone together is pretty much always a near occasion of sin. Fine, I happen to disagree. But I don't think that there is any point in this conversation where an honest reading of what I've written can support the accusations of heresy that you have been making. Your interpretation of me as "hold[ing] virtues in opposition to one another" and promoting pursuing occasions of sin is just not supported. You're too quick to attack without understanding what the person means. That anonymous post and this one is by "Kevin". The log-in seems to be malfunctioning right now. I am amazed that people claim an error in the principle of Charity in Truth for pointing out comments that are clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. It would be one thing if it was an educational moment for someone who doesn't understand what they are saying because they don't have the background, but if West really didn't understand what his words were implying, he needs a job outside of any educational activities. This is the theological arena where wording means everything. Patrick, obviously your amazement is caused by your belief that West was "clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. I for one am unacquainted with the TOB and with both Steve's and West's approach to it, but I can't help finding really strange that West's cheerleaders here have to resort to mob-lynching against Steve offering no rational argument for it, as if Christopher West were a kind of "Ferris Bueller" of Catholic celebrities everyone is supposed to like and agree with. Obviously, it is not a sin to simply be together in the same room alone. However, all the tinder necessary for sin is present. Now, Kevin, I agree that you have made yourself much more clear in your last post. But you must agree that your first few stabs at it were not clear - I can't read minds, all I can do is go by what is printed on the page. Chris West has been giving talks for a long, long time. He hasn't gotten any clearer in his presentations over that time. His wording, his failure to appreciate or provide nuance, this is what is killing him. Nestorius didn't MEAN to be a heretic. He thought he was right - indeed, both he and Arius caused the emperor to call the councils which deposed and condemned both of them. Good intent is not enough. Their WORDS are burned when their works are burned , even when the heretics are not which was most of the time - they usually just got banished. His intent is beside the point. My comments are mere croaking in comparison. You have been warned, and you continue your obstinance at the peril of your own soul. I'm sure the next step is to start bitching about those "Novus Ordo" katholics. I don't have a "URL" because I don't have a website. Are my criticisms less credible because I don't have a website? As it were, it is a sad thing, really. As Columcille observed, even if you are "right", you lose - I just pray it isn't your soul. I have challenged you on this point in every post of mine, and in every response you have avoided it. You are twisting West's words to fit your plan, and now you are so deep into this project, to turn back appears nearly impossible. You have drunk deeply from the bitter cup of self-righteousness, and the devil thus has you by the short hairs. It is a broad and easy road to declare yourself a greater authority than the Church leadership. You hold much more in common with Luther than with Aquinas, and as long as you resist any humble self assessment about your motivations, you will continue down a destructive path. Since you take not fraternal correction but only redouble your efforts at the challenge , I will offer my Peace to you. This vendetta will end as all vendettas end - in the death of a soul. May God take the time to get your attention before you cause any further rents in the Body of Christ. Johnnyjoe, Have you considered the possibility that the "fruit" here originates with Christopher West? This drama is centered around West, not me. I don't have Alice von Hildebrand breathing down my neck. I haven't been publicly repudiated for bad theology by the people who gave me my MA in theology. It ain't me that's brought out these fruits - these are the fruits of Christopher West's teachings. Buy a clue. Steve, On the contrary, intent is nearly everything. Words just do not have one specific meaning. For one thing, there aren't nearly enough of them for that kind of rigor. Nevertheless we can hope to communicate clearly if both parties do their job. That means the listener needs to be asking "how can I understand the speaker in a way that makes sense? Chris West does not aim his presentation at theologians. He is communicating to common people that have a lot of misconceptions about very basic ideas about chastity. One of the things he is always trying to drive home is that we should be trying and striving to become truly chaste in our minds and hearts, which involves having a positive outlook on sexuality. You can't just say this once and expect it to stick. You've got to say it a thousand times in a thousand ways before people start to really get it. When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who hears him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things. Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you must avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin. None of the heretical readings you have offered are warranted. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar idea, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage. You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people are capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand. If people aren't striving to be truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they? Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with better ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and striving for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations. Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that he believes that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state. Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since St. Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, but not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would not remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that. As for the Westian canon of four-fold action, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. West's message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot West. Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide behind, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them. I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow is dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective than any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. After following this, I must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to temptation in courtship. To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this fictional "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints. To flee such situations is the only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is to promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack. It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that can be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula. I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is the first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur. As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in his Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is to realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom. INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that. The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, although there may be slight differences between those two ideas. I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves or to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the determination of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help of a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances. I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone? Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin the SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two? Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin? I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when no sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be an occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something?? Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how absurd this is if you compare it to other situations. For some, being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day? For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other side of the aisle"? For some people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat. If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to develop the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the expectation of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable. But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical proximity raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of sin through their awareness of the danger and their moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or situation. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue. Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind. Is it easier to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to avoid the near occasion of sin. I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he wants to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater heights of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary. The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with someone we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous. Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, but if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim that West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone. Your abrasive and hostile language in this entire discussion kind of disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his prison room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, slammed the door on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation. According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you? What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's. These people set you up to argue with me and are now leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how to play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin. It is. We have a different word for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be morally neutral, and it clearly is not. I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Now, am I putting word into West's mouth? No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. He's making another point entirely. I realize this may be counter-intuitive, but when somebody is speaking english and their language takes the form "a is b", they don't necessarily mean it to be taken in the absolute sense, the way a logician means it. Language is a complex and subtle thing. The important thing is whether his meaning is being successfully conveyed to his listeners. I continue to believe that if you surveyed people coming out of his talks, asking them "Does Chris West teach that there is nothing at all virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin? If those two people disagree on some matter of truth, either one may be right, but if they disagree on what West's message is, it seems reasonable to give the benefit of the doubt to the supporter. I get the feeling that if Chris West himself were to come here and try to explain what he meant, you'd still tell him he meant something else. One last thing. I am obviously a fellow who likes a good debate. Accusing them of "cult tactics" because they give up trying to argue with you is, wow, pretty paranoid and demented, now that I think about it. I don't think continuing this discussion is good for you, and I think I will do the right thing and end it. Brendan is correct - deliberately entering an occasion for sin is a sin. Kevin, as far as your remark: The Church disagrees with your assessment. You seem to think that we can't believe what someone says. I think we can. You haven't been tracking what West has been doing and saying for the last ten years. As a professional speaker, that was and is part of what I have to do - keep track of what prominent Catholics are saying and doing. In the last ten years, I see no evidence Chris West has ever changed his mind. He has just changed his tactics. This is a very interesting discusion. Considering the remarks that have come from Kevin, I think it may be important to remind him that catholic moral theology has traditionally recognized 4 natural virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity. Thomas Aquinas treats chastity under the heading of temperance. When Steve says the virtues do not act against one another, what he means is that your virture of prudence assists you in being temperate, as do your other virtues. The virtues comliment one another. It seems that it is not clear to some here that prudence is properly speaking a virtue In some places Kevin seems to be speaking of it as a faculty or a power or a tool, and not a virtue properly speaking. For that matter it is a virtue on a higher order than chastity--if want to speak "in the true Thomistic sense". Steve, I am a bit shocked by your harsh critique of CW. I find your presentation of evidence very lacking. You seem to be trying very hard to find something wrong with his work by cherry picking a few of his sentences. There is a lot of twisting going on here. You are both sons of the Church. I invite you to re-examine your motives. JWilson, I haven't presented all the evidence, just what's present in one talk on one night. If you want all the evidence, we would have to walk through a lot of his talks on a lot of different nights. Why don't you take CW's statements before the Blessed Sacrament? Ask God if it's really the case that running away from a near occasion of sin is not a virtue. See what He says. Steve, Take CW's words before the blessed sacrament? I sure have. TOB, as taught to me through CW, convinced me wadding in the tiber was not enough to live a full life in Christ. Running from sin not a virtue? Of course this is the correct action for one to take who cannot control themselves. I strongly feel you cherry picked this virtue quote out of context to shred him. This is not the fullness of what God calls us to. This groom-to-be should not lift his nose in triumph, arms at hips, and declare he has matured in virtue because he did not do anything 'dirty'. Yet, it is just this attitude CW is condemning here. It is the same attitude that took me in the spiritual gutter in my college days. Coming from a Puritanical response to unchastity we sometimes forget God's will for us to see the situation without lust or disgust, but beauty. If you really need me to explain this more, let me know. The rigidity of the fine toothed comb you are raking over CW is baffling. They are not the same. I will go with what I know. You make me feel like I am back to my days of yore when I had to debate Protestant fundamentalist over calling men father. I invite you to avoid dragging peoples' names through the mud and attaching heretical terms to them until you are fully ready to provide very strong evidence. That being said, can we meet for coffee some time? I am buddies with Dav. You have missed the larger discussion point here. Good intentions do not stop someone from making heretical statements. Those statements should be challenged if not correct so that those who do not have a theological background are not misled. If you know of someone, who should know better as a teacher of the faith, making these types of statements even occasionally you should be questioning either their competency or their intent. So, is such a person ready to marry or should he wait until he has better self-control? A virtuous person will run from sin. However, such a person has not yet been fully perfected in virtue, especially if they only hold to a dualist view of sexuality. A person with a perverted contemporary view of sexuality may need further marital preparation if they see sex as something either dirty and 'pornish' or that the honeymoon bed is an opportunity to try every self-indulgent act they have ever heard of on late night cable. Such attitudes can harm a young marriage. Well, JWilson, Chris West disagrees with you: Christian, know thyself. But we must not call that virtue. It is NOT virtuous to run away. Continence is NOT virtue. In his "Good News" he explicitly says anal sex as foreplay is perfectly acceptable, there's nothing wrong with pretty much anything you want to do as long as the semen ends up in the vagina. So, you are out of step with Chris West on that as well. You agree with the premises of my concerns about West, you apparently just don't like the conclusion - that he's a heretic. But remember, Chris West is the one who says you are wrong. You have a prudish understanding of sex or you would realize that anal sex as foreplay is morally acceptable. Freedom in Christ, and all that. Janet Smith would chastise you for attacking West's presentation by disagreeing with him. Shame on you. Steve, I respect you a lot. I am a bit upset by your position. Could you please watch the following video clips from CW and pinpoint some of the areas of concern from them? I fear the two of you will agree with each other once an understanding is met, but you will miss his meaning if you only read some of his writings. Here are two: I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness. That is my point. That is CW's point. You seem to really be trying hard to not see this, and to find ways to confuse the message trying to be sent from CW. Please copy the entire text here with page number. If memory serves, I believe he has stated such activities are not explicitly against church teachings, but still might not be a good idea. You simply are cherry picking again out of context. Please refer to the video clips I linked. I have no concerns about West. The two of you agree on more than you realize, but seem to express it in two different ways. I hold to the hope that this is true. However, Johnnyjoe's comment seems to be a more reasonable conclusion: Call no man father. JWilson, "I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness" Well, as a matter of fact, I don't know that I agree. If they are contemplating marriage, then they are undoubtedly contemplating sex. You don't marry someone you don't want to have sex with. The whole point of marriage is that it's a vocation. If marriage is your vocation from God, that means you aren't complete until you are married. So, it may be that this couple has, indeed, grown as far as they can in holiness given the graces they are meant to have marriage versus the graces they actually have in their hands right now lack of marriage graces. Chris West doesn't seem to account for the grace of vocation, or any sacramental grace, for that matter. But, you say this is your point. Then, you say this is CW's point. There is nothing in his statement which indicates your supposition is correct. If he had said the couple displayed virtue, I might grant you the point. But he denied that they displayed virtue. He didn't qualify it later, he didn't modify it, he kept saying it over and over. They didn't display virtue. Continence is not a virtue. He released a 2nd edition precisely because the 1st edition was getting so much heat on that point. You can't get a copy of the first edition anymore. Furthermore, anal foreplay IS against church teachings. Smith and Waldstein have argued they aren't, but they have provided ZERO proof of their contention, while all the manuals inveigh against anal sex of any kind. Look, this is how West plays the game. Westians never deal with what is actually said. In his clip "http: You say that's cool and great that West is so insightful on Hefner. He holds up a blank sheet, says it holds "a beautiful painting", crumples it, then says Hugh Hefner tried to rescue that crumpled, beautiful painting out of the trash. Now, all Hefner ever did was take pictures of naked women. So, West is implying this "beautiful picture" is a picture of a naked woman. He's saying we should all be able to look at naked women without any problem. He then goes on to talk about our bodies being holy. All fine and good. But he ends by making the implicit claim that because of Christ, we should be able to see naked bodies without the problems of concupiscence, which is the same implicit claim he started with when he pulled the blank-Hefner-sheet out of the trash. Back in the late 's, West made the self-same argument to two of the most renowned popular theologians in the Catholic world today - he said that if he properly implemented TOB, he should be able to look at their naked wives without a problem. Both of theologians jumped down his throat pointing out that he was thereby denying the Catholic doctrine on concupiscence. The organization taping the program canned the interview because West was obviously expressing heterodox views. All West has done in this video is change his language so his flawed understanding of concupiscence isn't as obvious. As far as his doctrine goes, he hasn't changed a damned thing. It's still there in his presentation. The Arians and the semi-Pelagians used to pull the same crap. You are putting words in my mouth. West is reminding us that the original nakedness and sexuality of humanity is good, true and beautiful. For people like me, we were raised thinking sexual pleasure was something dirty and bad that you got to get to do once you got married. Nakedness is beautiful. The way the Cistine Chapel portrays this is beautiful. The way Playboy portrays nakedness is twisted. With the eyes of Christ, we should be able to see the beauty of nakedness as Michaelangelo portrayed it, not the Hefner way. Also, CW is not denying that some born again saints may see the Cistine Chapel and lust, but I believe he agrees we should realize there is a beauty beyond such disordered passion. Both of theologians jumped down his throat Saints have been dismissed by even bishops before. Show me the link to the magisterial document. Tell me the paragraph number in the catechism. I am under the impression such teaching has never been codified. You copy and paste half of one and now you have presented the full CW? Come on Steve. Over and over. People like me grew up with the options of seeing sexuality as a nihistic free for all or that it is a dirty act that we undergo for some good reason. The Hefners of the world profess sexuality is a recreational activity. The Puritans avoided it, sweeping the issue under the rug. The truth is in a third way. Sexuality is beautiful. Our [mine and others] version of it has become damaged. Christ shows us there is a pure and beautiful way. This is the message of TOB. This is the message of CW. CW is not a proper theologian. He is a speaker and a spiritual author who is teaching to a set audience that is not the larger theological body of the church. If you read him as a strict theologian, I can understand how one might be taken back. However, if you read him from the target audience perspective, you get a different view than the one you are condemning through your blog. See him from this view, and I think you will find your accusations of heresy assuaged. Thank you Steve. Everything you say is right. I have attended West's talks and left appalled and embarrassed. I appreciate those people who have returned to the church because they were finally told by CW that sex wasn't bad, but he was merely the occasion of their return, not the cause. I appreciate those people who in their own goodness of heart can pull out the beauty and truth about sex, nakedness, etc. But again - that reflects those good people, not CW. David Schindler is arguably the greatest American theologian. Carl Anderson, head of the Knights of Columbus, requested Schindler's article for the Knights website. As a commentator pointed out on another site, the 1 reason for CW's problems is his lack of understanding of the 4th Lateran Council's "greater dissimilitude" statement: But instead most people just make the same mistake over and over: He is getting it out badly. Yes, some on this site came back to the Church after hearing CW. Instead, CW has cornered the market with his very lucrative snake oil, and he will attack anyone who threatens his business plan. He's a Rohrschach for you. You impute to him whatever good motives you wish you had. Unfortunately, his very words convict him. Everyone keeps talking about West's address of Puritanism or Manicheanism. A Prove it. Quote someone besides a Westian who holds to that view. It's absolutely a violation of the history to make the statement. B The charge could equally be made that West is: As for problems with anal sex, not only can we point to Summa Theologica, 2a2ae, q, a1, Since anal sex, even anal foreplay, involves extremely unhygenic and therefore dangerous sexual practice, especially in reference to the female, it is forbidden simply on those grounds alone. That West or Smith or anyone else even attempts to justify it is ludicrous on its face, as even Slate pointed out http: We DO agree on one thing: If West is not a proper theologian, and we both agree he is not, then he is not an Athanasian or a Thomist either. I think you are right about many of the points you make about CW. I do think the heart of what he says is right and you have cherry-picked a few errors here and there. It is a good thing to do whan done charitably. Your tone does not feel very charitable to me. I hope your heart is not as hateful as it seems from your post. We must simply recall that bishops have frequently backed extremely erroneous teachers and teachings. Indeed, nearly every major heresy of the Church was started or actively supported by an ordained man or men. I do object to making your opinion more important than the bishops. Every pro-abortion Catholic can find theologians who agree with him. The Catholic faith is defined by the bishops and popes. It is not defined by you. I do not doubt that West gets a few things wrong. I also do not doubt that he wants to communicate the ideas of John Paul II as accurately as possible. As Catholics we need to explain to this world why we feel God's sexual morality is logical and beautiful. He is one on the few to make that case rather than just making rules. Randy, I've explained exactly how Chris West is distorting Catholic teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography. In none of those cases did I refer to my opinion. I referred to the constant teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography. Chris West's words do not follow the teachings of the Church. The only way you can force them into the Church's mold is to read Chris West's "intentions" into the words. I am unable to read minds, so I have not the skill to read his unspoken intentions. I can only read his words. Thus, the only one bringing "opinions" to the table is the Westians. Chris West is not the only one making the Church's case. Nor, for that matter, is he the only one distorting the Church's case. He is, however, the only one distorting the Church's case while pretending to present the Church's case. The story has nothing to do with Christoper West. Nothing at all. Rather it is yet another example of Steve Kellmeyer prosecuting his personal vendetta against Christopher West. Fraternal joy, charity, forgiveness, constructive action, all of these have been set aflame before the idol of Steve's vindictive personality and blind rage. Well done Steve. How does that joyless acidic vindictive spirit play in the market place, eh? I bet speaking invitations are pouring in. Just can't keep the phone on the hook, eh? The people just can't get enough of your distinctive style of bitterness, private inquisition, with the cherry of Catholic doctrine on top. What a winning combination. I've told you before that you are hurting your reputation as a Catholic presenter, and gaining one as a Catholic hypocrite. Previously I've shared with you that Truth is impotent without Charity. Now it seems that you have even rejected the standards of truth in waging your war against the person of Christopher West with this latest headline attack. Like I said, I organize Catholic speakers to come to a major urban diocese. Most of the speakers I talk to have filled calendars with speaking engagements. Steve, I would not invite you to come and speak and I would recommend the same to others. Because you lack charity. I see from your calendar of speaking engagements that you have a total of 3 events scheduled for the entire year. Steve, I would get up from your computer, go into the other room and take a look contemplative look at your wife and children and then ask yourself if they are worth sacrificing at the altar of your personal vendetta against Christopher West. Your war is hurting them because it is hurting your ability to draw speaking engagements. Seattle Central Community College: There are no rumors about this place. But according to Seattle gay historian Adrian Ryan, "the culinary department's men's potty resembles the last days of the Roman Empire! Cornish College of the Arts: This library is extremely small. Proceed with caution, unless you are an extremely small person, in which case revel in open dirtiness wherever! S ometimes things happen, like babies. Sometimes, because of life, these babies need to be ended before they begin. Lucky for you, life-living lady, you live in a big, liberal city with big, liberal baby-ending options. This is probably going to be hard, but that does not mean it is the wrong thing to do or the right thing to do. For the record, just because sometimes someone regrets something does not mean that the thing should be illegal—were that the case, we would like to press criminal charges against the Great Knit Poncho Explosion of Tell whoever impregnated you to pony up some cash. An abortion can be paid for in installments. An abortion can be a pill better or it can be an operation worse. You do not have to tell your parents about your abortion thank you, Washington State! You will be okay. Here are your abortion service options in and around Seattle, listed by location. Aurora Medical Services, Broadway, Ste , , www. Wy, , www. Lacey near Olympia: I n general, it is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove yourself one. But if you must speak on an arty subject, just be honest—don't name-drop, don't make up shit about light and perspective and Freudian symbolism and postmodern theory unless you've read—and written essays about—the books. Say what you think and don't try to impress anybody , especially yourself. The great news is this: While good art is a marvelous thing to behold and even bad art can be instructive, arty events tend to attract plenty of loud-mouthed morons who will do the embarrassing talking for you. D o not use the word "foodie," and give up on finding a good substitute: There isn't one. You are merely a person who has a modicum of knowledge about, and enjoys a variety of, different foods. This is very fashionable right now, and for good reason: It's healthier than a fast- and processed-food diet, and being willing to put almost anything in your mouth is hot. Read up on the foods of different cultures Wikipedia is a fine start , and read food writing local papers, magazines, M. Try all kinds of food on the Ave; look for places that are full and that have high ratings online. Try good, inexpensive restaurants elsewhere: Go eat oysters at the awesome happy hour at Elliott's on the waterfront Alaskan Way, Pier 56, ; it's open to all ages. Find other all-ages happy hours; it's a cheap way to eat at great places. Be ready with a wish list when someone else is paying or when you have some cash. When you're broke, journey to Uwajimaya, browse and marvel! Go to the farmers market, browse, talk to people. Learn to cook. In general, with food—as with all things—do not bloviate. Rather, share your secrets. Be excited. Bring a date. They will love you. T he basic rule of how to behave at a music show is kind of the same rule that governs how to behave everywhere in life you may want to clip this one out of the paper and tack it onto your wall: Be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you, and don't be a jerk. It's that easy! Are other people moshing? Then maybe it's not a good show to be moshing at—maybe you're at a disco and you didn't notice. Are other people dancing? Maybe you would like to dance also! Is the show so crowded that you can't really move without stepping on toes and bumping into hapless spectators? Maybe you should watch it with the elbows then, buddy. Of course, this is not an ironclad rule. You are a special, unique individual—possibly more special and unique than anyone who has ever been to a rock concert! Don't be afraid to be the only person dancing or the first person jumping around and—without malice—bumping into your neighbors every show needs one first brave soul to get things moving. Just be aware that some people may not want to dance or have you moshing into them, and it would be awfully nice of you to let them enjoy the show in their own special and unique way. Y ou love music. Who doesn't? But you're also a broke college student who eats uncooked ramen for fun on a Friday night. You still want to support the artists you love, so that they can afford to keep eating ramen noodles in the style to which they've become accustomed and, more importantly, keep making the music you love. How do you do it? You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have to , you buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, and performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of contemporary art? Start by going to First Thursday, which happens on the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before. You've got better things to do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one of its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing. But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Silhouettes lewd, loopy puppetry. Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better. Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, unfuckwithable presence on the field, even though he's confined to the goalkeeper's box. And the guy with the best biography is Osvaldo Alonso, a Cuban defector who walked away from his Cuban team in a Wal-Mart in Texas a couple years ago and never looked back. It's a great fucking team—playing an old, simple, sexy game. For reasons no one's really figured out, the Sounders have higher average attendance at home games than any other team in American major-league soccer. They play at Qwest Field. You can get tickets at www. Wear green. W ell, here you are: We're known for, like, three things: Since you're stuck here until you graduate or burn out and get a job at Orange Julius, you might as well enjoy all the squirrels and splendor and shit. There's plenty to do adventurewise. Also, you can always swim in the lakes. You just walk down there and keep walking until the land ends and you are wet. It is amazing. Grow a beard or armpit hairs. Get a Nalgene bottle. And go to the Olympic Peninsula, where there is even a rain forest. I f you have a desire to spend time outdoors without getting too far away from your TV, laptop, and civilization, there's plenty of woodsy shit to do in-city. Seattle has, like, 19, parks, but Discovery Park in Magnolia is perhaps the best place in Seattle to take a long walk, smoke a joint, and eat a sandwich without being bothered. Green Lake is also a fine place to sit and ogle joggers. You can also rest in a big grassy field and watch or play a pickup basketball game at Green Lake's court, or rent a kayak or pedal boat and float around the lake. There's also a swing set and totally sweet merry-go-round, and sometimes some people do a thing involving dancing and rollerblading simultaneously, and you can watch this, and you will like it. Cal Anderson Park on Capitol Hill is beautiful in the summer—and there's a big concrete water-filled sculpture to splash around in—and Victor Steinbrueck Park, at the north end of the Pike Place Market, has a fantastic view of Puget Sound and is great for people-watching. It's also one of the best places in the city to buy crack and get stabbed by a hobo. If you have something against parks ass-hole! And here's another idea: For basically the price of a movie ticket, you can ride the ferry to Bainbridge Island and back. Just pay your fare, walk on, and there will be wind and water and such. Y ou may be asked to wear a pink hat! You are going to look so stupid! Just do it, because your life is about to get much, much, much better. The Land of Pink Hats and mandatorially naked ladies; the hats are required for hygiene reasons, ostensibly, but more likely the owners just want to have a laugh is Olympus Spa, with two locations: Tacoma and Lynnwood. These are Korean spas, which means they have everything a regular spa has hot tubs, cold plunges, steam saunas, dry saunas, massages , but they also have something called a body scrub. In a body scrub, a Korean lady scrubs your skin off. It is pretty great. At Banya 5, which is located more conveniently in South Lake Union, both men and women are allowed on coed days you wear a bathing suit , there are no pink hats, and the tradition is Russian. This means that in addition to the regular stuff see above , you can hire a person to smack you with giant leaves, according to custom. If you can, try not to think about being naked because it will make you less afraid of being naked. But I have this pink hat! W e are not Europe, yet. Soon we will be, but until then, drinking in public is illegal. What to do about this problem? No biggie. Just drink your booze from coffee cups, if you want to walk down the street; or drink in parks with lots of trees, if you do not want to disguise your booze. A bad park to drink in: Cal Anderson Park. There's not enough vegetation in that place; cops can see you in a minute. A good park for drinking: There are plenty of trees and bushes in that park, and cops almost never enter it. In general, you can mark the parks designed by the influential earlyth-century landscape designers the Olmsted Brothers Volunteer Park! The Olmsteds understood that a great park must afford the visitor a certain measure of privacy. U se the internet. The Sol Duc Hot Springs are a well-trod and paved and policed path full of families and nudists. And though the two camps frequently squabble in entertaining ways, both tend toward patronizing sanctimony and neither are much fun. In general, you'll want an at least 2. As for alcohol: Spring for champagne and sip, don't glug. As for drugs: Being lost and high in the woods in the dark is bad news we speak from experience. As for sex: Sadly, it's not the best idea—the thermophilic bacteria that live in hot springs are good for your outsides, but not so good for your insides. And by the time you've arranged yourself on a towel or a bed of moss and ferns, you'll probably feel pretty damn cold. Do what the spirit moves you of course! Pack it in, pack it out, etc. U nless you are some sort of Ferris Bueller—style genius of avoidance, you will read books when you are in school. Some of these books will be good. Some of these books will be very bad. But probably none of them will get you laid. And lots of the books that students typically read for fun—those enormous fantasy-novel series by obese, bearded men; Twilight ; Days of Sodom —will also definitely not help you score. So here's the thing: If you can speak Spanish, you should read Pablo Neruda's love poetry in the original. There's nothing a dewy-eyed woman won't do for you once you've broken out "Ausencia" in a whispery voice. And if you're looking to unleash epic horniness, there's nothing like couples reading to each other: Try a Richard Brautigan story or two The Abortion: A s a vegan in the U. Your dietary habits literally go against the grain of most American restaurants and food companies, making you a problematic dining companion, even in supposedly enlightened cities like Seattle. Americans and the eating establishments that cater to them largely operate under the notion that consuming meat and dairy products is normal, healthy, and ecologically sustainable until the end of time. Most vegans call bullshit on these assumptions, but it's best to do so silently—unless, of course, you enjoy ostracism. Don't preach; instead, lead by example. Who knows, you may end up converting hardcore carnivores to a lifestyle that doesn't involve oppressing animals and hastening the demise of the planet—and fattening butts to heinous dimensions. What are they into? Where do they hang out? Meanwhile—and this is key—do interesting stuff yourself. Make weird art, go to plays and shows, skinny-dip in fountains, walk across the entire city, read The Stranger. You're a person with unusual and fascinating experiences and observations, and that's hot..

He's essentially an Adamite. He has, on numerous occasions, advocated various kinds of Ure Concupiscent Arent U? nudity on at least a theoretical level and sometimes a practical level as being consistent with Catholic theology. Indeed, I know of at least one television show see more which he Ure Concupiscent Arent U? with Catholic theologians this very point. The show never aired because it was deemed too scandalous.

They actually reported his views with complete accuracy. I was actually shocked by how accurate they were. I didn't expect it from a secular news media source. As you both admit, you know nothing of Ure Concupiscent Arent U? situation. And if I am reading him unfairly, then what do you say of his instructors? At least three different instructors at the place where he was taught TOB have all repudiated him.

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You can ad hominem me, and fail to engage any of the theological points I've brought out, but how do you plan on doing the same to the faculty that taught him?

Oh, I also find it interesting, Columcille, that you and Johnnyjoe same person perhaps don't have any personal links. Anonymous assaults - very touching. Columcille, You suggest I take out a canonical lawsuit against West. Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

I should. Perhaps I shall. Columcille, in turn, I suggest that if you are going to cast aspersions on my character, you tell us all exactly who you are, give us your real name and your real connection to Chris West.

Let's get out from behind the mask, shall we? Steve, I think one of the central problems here is that you are equivocating between prudence and chastity.

It is the distinction between the two that West is trying to point out. Avoiding the near occassion of Ure Concupiscent Arent U? is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the same thing as having the virtue against which the temptation to sin tends. Having the prudence to avoid the near occassions of sins Ure Concupiscent Arent U? chastity, for instance, is not the same thing as being chaste. West is arguing go here avoiding the near occasion of sin is only a stop-gap measure to protect us while we work to cooperate with grace to the point that Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

are truly chaste. Once we are chaste, it is no longer necessary. There's always the possibility of sin, but if that alone meant we must avoid the situation, we could never leave the house! Furthermore, it goes too far to say that an unmarried man "CAN'T expect to Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Even after baptism? Tell me, would it be possible for young saints Francis and Clare to be alone together and remain chaste? Inquiring minds want to know. Kevin, You are Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the virtues in opposition to one another.

That's not how it works. It is not the case that once I am chaste, I no longer need to be prudent. The virtues are not something we capture, like a bird in a cage. They are constantly lived out, we work out our salvation in fear and trembling, they are constantly in danger of being lost.

The virtues are habits of action. Like any muscle, the virtue requires constant exercise and require Ure Concupiscent Arent U? vigilance to exercise Ure Concupiscent Arent U?.

So part of the Ure Concupiscent Arent U? of chastity is prudence. Part of the virtue of prudence is chastity.

Skinny pornstar Watch Video N sexxx. Whatever constructive critique you may have is lost for failure to love. I doubt your innocence in all this is as you portray because your style is so confrontational and often mean spirited, Steve. Steve, why don't you initiate a canonical suit against West for heresy? Then you will either be vindicated by the proper authorities, or West will be. Either way, you will know, and so will we, and regardless of the outcome everyone will know how much your war against Christopher West is a sign of your character. Either way, you lose. That's my point Steve, you are losing. Even if what you say is true about West's theology, even if it is heresy that he teaches, your crusade violates the principle of Charity in Truth in favor of Maliciousness in Truth. As such, you lose. In my own view, I think you interpret West's work in the worse possible light and attack that in an unbalanced way to wage a personal vendetta against him. The fact that I guessed that you had an altercation with him is some proof that my assessment is on target. If this is true, then you lose even more so because you are posing as the defender of Christian doctrine, while being an unforgiving malicious hypocrite. My point to you Steve which you missed , is that you are hurting yourself and the Church by what you are doing. If you are serious about West preaching heresy, then take a canonical action and be done with it. But again, be warned. Kevin, "How many couples do you know who were not practicing "Purity, chastity and modesty" before marriage, but suddenly began to practice them the instant they were married? Grace works transforms who we are, but it takes awhile for us to catch up with our new capabilities. So, there are two ways to answer your question. First, a one year old has all the power in his legs, all the nerves, all the muscles, all the bone strength necessary to walk unimpeded. But he has to practice how to USE that power. That's why he falls down a lot - he has muscle concupiscence, the tendency to WANT to fall down, even though he has the power to stand. Similarly, the grace of marriage instantly provides all the power to live out all the virtues but it takes a while to learn how to use that new power. And this is part of the second point. If I am unmarried and have not the graces of marriage, then I will live out purity, chastity and modesty differently than when I am married. Precisely because the unmarried man has less power, less grace, he CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Indeed, what is impure the night before the wedding becomes pure the night after the wedding. What is immodest the night before becomes modest. What is unchaste becomes chaste. West takes none of these things into account. He mocks them for recognizing their weaknesses, chastises them for exercising chastity, claims their attempts at purity are really a sign of their underlying impurity. Like snow-covered dunghills, the unmarried lovers who choose to remain apart LOOK pure on the outside, says West, but on the inside they are really filled with charnel and dust! He's telling all of these young men and women that not only should, they be able to remain alone in a bedroom prior to marriage, but that anyone who advises them against doing so is the real sinner. This turns years of spiritual and moral counsel from the Church on its head. This man is denying the sacraments of the Church. He's denying the fallen nature of man. He's essentially an Adamite. He has, on numerous occasions, advocated various kinds of public nudity on at least a theoretical level and sometimes a practical level as being consistent with Catholic theology. Indeed, I know of at least one television show in which he discussed with Catholic theologians this very point. The show never aired because it was deemed too scandalous. They actually reported his views with complete accuracy. I was actually shocked by how accurate they were. I didn't expect it from a secular news media source. As you both admit, you know nothing of the situation. And if I am reading him unfairly, then what do you say of his instructors? At least three different instructors at the place where he was taught TOB have all repudiated him. You can ad hominem me, and fail to engage any of the theological points I've brought out, but how do you plan on doing the same to the faculty that taught him? Oh, I also find it interesting, Columcille, that you and Johnnyjoe same person perhaps don't have any personal links. Anonymous assaults - very touching. Columcille, You suggest I take out a canonical lawsuit against West. Perhaps I should. Perhaps I shall. Columcille, in turn, I suggest that if you are going to cast aspersions on my character, you tell us all exactly who you are, give us your real name and your real connection to Chris West. Let's get out from behind the mask, shall we? Steve, I think one of the central problems here is that you are equivocating between prudence and chastity. It is the distinction between the two that West is trying to point out. Avoiding the near occassion of sin is not the same thing as having the virtue against which the temptation to sin tends. Having the prudence to avoid the near occassions of sins against chastity, for instance, is not the same thing as being chaste. West is arguing that avoiding the near occasion of sin is only a stop-gap measure to protect us while we work to cooperate with grace to the point that we are truly chaste. Once we are chaste, it is no longer necessary. There's always the possibility of sin, but if that alone meant we must avoid the situation, we could never leave the house! Furthermore, it goes too far to say that an unmarried man "CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Even after baptism? Tell me, would it be possible for young saints Francis and Clare to be alone together and remain chaste? Inquiring minds want to know. Kevin, You are setting the virtues in opposition to one another. That's not how it works. It is not the case that once I am chaste, I no longer need to be prudent. The virtues are not something we capture, like a bird in a cage. They are constantly lived out, we work out our salvation in fear and trembling, they are constantly in danger of being lost. The virtues are habits of action. Like any muscle, the virtue requires constant exercise and require constant vigilance to exercise them. So part of the virtue of chastity is prudence. Part of the virtue of prudence is chastity. It is virtually impossible to exercise one virtue to the exclusion of the others. Like the Persons of the Trinity, virtues can be distinguished, but they can never be separated. So, the exercise of virtue is not an either-or situation. But, insofar as you have followed Chris West, you have gained the erroneous idea that it is, haven't you? Are you beginning to see the problem? I've just noted two things you reveal in this conversation seem to go together nicely: You're a belligerent jerk to everyone who disagrees with you, and you once provoked a guy you manifestly hate to shove you. I'm certainly not going to defer to their opinions because they happen to be professors. I've known too many professors. And if they want to convince me of anything, the first they have to do is characterize their interpretation of West's views in a way that isn't wildly at odds with what the guy actually says. You might try that as well. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. This freedom is a real, living possibility if we are willing to undergo deep and painful purifications. If you have a prediliction to shoplift bubblegum, it would be prudent for you to avoid the bubblegum aisle of the store. If you overcome that compulsion to the degree that you are confident it is not a likely possibility, going to great lengths to avoid the bubblegum aisle become pointless. It's no longer prudence. Prudence hasn't changed. You have. If you are unchaste, by definition you are imprudent. You can't hold a prudent thought in your head while being unchaste with your body. You may have been unchaste with your body IN THE PAST, still haven't confessed the sin, but through the work of actual graces you have returned to some semblance of sanity and are NOW trying to be both prudent and chaste. You continue to hold virtues in opposition to one another, because that's what Chris West has taught you to do. The very idea is absurd. Heresy works best when it is liberally admixed with orthodoxy. It's much harder to detect the heresy that way. That's why the man frightens me. He's good enough to be really, really dangerous. Kevin, You're right, it's clear what you meant. That's the problem. You have an either-or understanding of virtues. Take your bubble-gum example. The ability to ignore the bubble-gum means that you have increased your abilities in the virtue of prudence and restraint. It doesn't mean you don't need those virtues, it means you are growing in their power. He CAN'T grow in virtue by repeatedly and deliberately putting himself in a situation that's really only proper to a married person. Find me a saint of the Church who says you need to pursue near occasions of sin, or even not to worry about them, in order to grow in grace, and I'll agree with you. Oh, Kevin, funny you should bring up Francis and Clare. First, to answer your question, they were both under religious vows, which gave them graces to maintain their virtues. But, I heard Christopher West specifically call out St. Francis as an example NOT to follow because he threw himself into a rose bush in order to quiet his concupiscence. West claimed that this was a "disordered understanding of the theology of the body. So I'm very glad that you brought those two into the conversation. This all boils down to asking WHY is it prudent to avoid certain situations. It is prudent because of the likelihood that you will give in to temptation and sin. It isn't the mere possibility of sin that makes avoidance prudent, but the degree of likelihood. The possibility exists always and everywhere. Obviously some judgment is involved, and there is a grey area where it is unclear if the likelihood of sinning is large enough to warrant avoiding the situation. A big part of assessing the likelihood of sin is to take stock of your character. We never achieve perfection in this life, but we move towards perfection as we conform ourselves to Christ. That said, it seems perfectly obvious that as our hearts are more conformed to Christ, it becomes less and less likely that being a single person alone with a person of the opposite sex would lead to sin. At a certain point, it is no longer required by prudence to avoid the situation. And of course, some people have a longer journey to get to that point than others, depending on many things such as their personality and their history. You say that being alone with the person you are courting is "a situation that's really only proper to a married person. If it is improper, it is because the couple should avoid the near occasion of sin. That's the only reason that's been offered in this conversation, anyway. If it is the near occasion of sin, that is because it is a situation in which it is likely that the couple will actually sin meaning a sin distinct from the alleged sin of being alone together. And that all hangs, of course, on how likely it is, in reality, that they will sin. As with any case, the couple themselves are called to make a judgment about that likelihood. Note that this is not "pursuing near occasions of sin", it is evaluating whether one exists. So I repeat, you are begging the question. If I wanted to pursue a near occasion of sin, I would first have to determine that one existed, and then pursue it. Finally, you may judge, in your best estimation, that any unmarried couple being alone together is pretty much always a near occasion of sin. Fine, I happen to disagree. But I don't think that there is any point in this conversation where an honest reading of what I've written can support the accusations of heresy that you have been making. Your interpretation of me as "hold[ing] virtues in opposition to one another" and promoting pursuing occasions of sin is just not supported. You're too quick to attack without understanding what the person means. That anonymous post and this one is by "Kevin". The log-in seems to be malfunctioning right now. I am amazed that people claim an error in the principle of Charity in Truth for pointing out comments that are clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. It would be one thing if it was an educational moment for someone who doesn't understand what they are saying because they don't have the background, but if West really didn't understand what his words were implying, he needs a job outside of any educational activities. This is the theological arena where wording means everything. Patrick, obviously your amazement is caused by your belief that West was "clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. I for one am unacquainted with the TOB and with both Steve's and West's approach to it, but I can't help finding really strange that West's cheerleaders here have to resort to mob-lynching against Steve offering no rational argument for it, as if Christopher West were a kind of "Ferris Bueller" of Catholic celebrities everyone is supposed to like and agree with. Obviously, it is not a sin to simply be together in the same room alone. However, all the tinder necessary for sin is present. Now, Kevin, I agree that you have made yourself much more clear in your last post. But you must agree that your first few stabs at it were not clear - I can't read minds, all I can do is go by what is printed on the page. Chris West has been giving talks for a long, long time. He hasn't gotten any clearer in his presentations over that time. His wording, his failure to appreciate or provide nuance, this is what is killing him. Nestorius didn't MEAN to be a heretic. He thought he was right - indeed, both he and Arius caused the emperor to call the councils which deposed and condemned both of them. Good intent is not enough. Their WORDS are burned when their works are burned , even when the heretics are not which was most of the time - they usually just got banished. His intent is beside the point. My comments are mere croaking in comparison. You have been warned, and you continue your obstinance at the peril of your own soul. I'm sure the next step is to start bitching about those "Novus Ordo" katholics. I don't have a "URL" because I don't have a website. Are my criticisms less credible because I don't have a website? As it were, it is a sad thing, really. As Columcille observed, even if you are "right", you lose - I just pray it isn't your soul. I have challenged you on this point in every post of mine, and in every response you have avoided it. You are twisting West's words to fit your plan, and now you are so deep into this project, to turn back appears nearly impossible. You have drunk deeply from the bitter cup of self-righteousness, and the devil thus has you by the short hairs. It is a broad and easy road to declare yourself a greater authority than the Church leadership. You hold much more in common with Luther than with Aquinas, and as long as you resist any humble self assessment about your motivations, you will continue down a destructive path. Since you take not fraternal correction but only redouble your efforts at the challenge , I will offer my Peace to you. This vendetta will end as all vendettas end - in the death of a soul. May God take the time to get your attention before you cause any further rents in the Body of Christ. Johnnyjoe, Have you considered the possibility that the "fruit" here originates with Christopher West? This drama is centered around West, not me. I don't have Alice von Hildebrand breathing down my neck. I haven't been publicly repudiated for bad theology by the people who gave me my MA in theology. It ain't me that's brought out these fruits - these are the fruits of Christopher West's teachings. Buy a clue. Steve, On the contrary, intent is nearly everything. Words just do not have one specific meaning. For one thing, there aren't nearly enough of them for that kind of rigor. Nevertheless we can hope to communicate clearly if both parties do their job. That means the listener needs to be asking "how can I understand the speaker in a way that makes sense? Chris West does not aim his presentation at theologians. He is communicating to common people that have a lot of misconceptions about very basic ideas about chastity. One of the things he is always trying to drive home is that we should be trying and striving to become truly chaste in our minds and hearts, which involves having a positive outlook on sexuality. You can't just say this once and expect it to stick. You've got to say it a thousand times in a thousand ways before people start to really get it. When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who hears him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things. Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you must avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin. None of the heretical readings you have offered are warranted. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar idea, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage. You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people are capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand. If people aren't striving to be truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they? Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with better ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and striving for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations. Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that he believes that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state. Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since St. Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, but not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would not remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that. As for the Westian canon of four-fold action, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. West's message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot West. Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide behind, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them. I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow is dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective than any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. After following this, I must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to temptation in courtship. To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this fictional "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints. To flee such situations is the only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is to promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack. It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that can be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula. I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is the first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur. As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in his Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is to realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom. INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that. The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, although there may be slight differences between those two ideas. I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves or to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the determination of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help of a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances. I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone? Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin the SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two? Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin? I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when no sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be an occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something?? Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how absurd this is if you compare it to other situations. For some, being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day? For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other side of the aisle"? For some people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat. If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to develop the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the expectation of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable. But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical proximity raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of sin through their awareness of the danger and their moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or situation. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue. Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind. Is it easier to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to avoid the near occasion of sin. I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he wants to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater heights of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary. The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with someone we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous. Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, but if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim that West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone. Your abrasive and hostile language in this entire discussion kind of disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his prison room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, slammed the door on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation. According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you? What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's. These people set you up to argue with me and are now leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how to play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin. It is. We have a different word for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be morally neutral, and it clearly is not. I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Now, am I putting word into West's mouth? No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. He's making another point entirely. I realize this may be counter-intuitive, but when somebody is speaking english and their language takes the form "a is b", they don't necessarily mean it to be taken in the absolute sense, the way a logician means it. Language is a complex and subtle thing. The important thing is whether his meaning is being successfully conveyed to his listeners. I continue to believe that if you surveyed people coming out of his talks, asking them "Does Chris West teach that there is nothing at all virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin? If those two people disagree on some matter of truth, either one may be right, but if they disagree on what West's message is, it seems reasonable to give the benefit of the doubt to the supporter. I get the feeling that if Chris West himself were to come here and try to explain what he meant, you'd still tell him he meant something else. One last thing. I am obviously a fellow who likes a good debate. Accusing them of "cult tactics" because they give up trying to argue with you is, wow, pretty paranoid and demented, now that I think about it. I don't think continuing this discussion is good for you, and I think I will do the right thing and end it. Brendan is correct - deliberately entering an occasion for sin is a sin. Kevin, as far as your remark: The Church disagrees with your assessment. You seem to think that we can't believe what someone says. I think we can. You haven't been tracking what West has been doing and saying for the last ten years. As a professional speaker, that was and is part of what I have to do - keep track of what prominent Catholics are saying and doing. In the last ten years, I see no evidence Chris West has ever changed his mind. He has just changed his tactics. This is a very interesting discusion. Considering the remarks that have come from Kevin, I think it may be important to remind him that catholic moral theology has traditionally recognized 4 natural virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity. Thomas Aquinas treats chastity under the heading of temperance. When Steve says the virtues do not act against one another, what he means is that your virture of prudence assists you in being temperate, as do your other virtues. The virtues comliment one another. It seems that it is not clear to some here that prudence is properly speaking a virtue In some places Kevin seems to be speaking of it as a faculty or a power or a tool, and not a virtue properly speaking. For that matter it is a virtue on a higher order than chastity--if want to speak "in the true Thomistic sense". Steve, I am a bit shocked by your harsh critique of CW. I find your presentation of evidence very lacking. You seem to be trying very hard to find something wrong with his work by cherry picking a few of his sentences. There is a lot of twisting going on here. You are both sons of the Church. I invite you to re-examine your motives. JWilson, I haven't presented all the evidence, just what's present in one talk on one night. If you want all the evidence, we would have to walk through a lot of his talks on a lot of different nights. Why don't you take CW's statements before the Blessed Sacrament? Ask God if it's really the case that running away from a near occasion of sin is not a virtue. See what He says. Steve, Take CW's words before the blessed sacrament? I sure have. TOB, as taught to me through CW, convinced me wadding in the tiber was not enough to live a full life in Christ. Running from sin not a virtue? Of course this is the correct action for one to take who cannot control themselves. I strongly feel you cherry picked this virtue quote out of context to shred him. This is not the fullness of what God calls us to. This groom-to-be should not lift his nose in triumph, arms at hips, and declare he has matured in virtue because he did not do anything 'dirty'. Yet, it is just this attitude CW is condemning here. It is the same attitude that took me in the spiritual gutter in my college days. Coming from a Puritanical response to unchastity we sometimes forget God's will for us to see the situation without lust or disgust, but beauty. If you really need me to explain this more, let me know. The rigidity of the fine toothed comb you are raking over CW is baffling. They are not the same. I will go with what I know. You make me feel like I am back to my days of yore when I had to debate Protestant fundamentalist over calling men father. I invite you to avoid dragging peoples' names through the mud and attaching heretical terms to them until you are fully ready to provide very strong evidence. That being said, can we meet for coffee some time? I am buddies with Dav. You have missed the larger discussion point here. Good intentions do not stop someone from making heretical statements. Those statements should be challenged if not correct so that those who do not have a theological background are not misled. If you know of someone, who should know better as a teacher of the faith, making these types of statements even occasionally you should be questioning either their competency or their intent. So, is such a person ready to marry or should he wait until he has better self-control? A virtuous person will run from sin. However, such a person has not yet been fully perfected in virtue, especially if they only hold to a dualist view of sexuality. A person with a perverted contemporary view of sexuality may need further marital preparation if they see sex as something either dirty and 'pornish' or that the honeymoon bed is an opportunity to try every self-indulgent act they have ever heard of on late night cable. Such attitudes can harm a young marriage. Well, JWilson, Chris West disagrees with you: Christian, know thyself. But we must not call that virtue. It is NOT virtuous to run away. Continence is NOT virtue. In his "Good News" he explicitly says anal sex as foreplay is perfectly acceptable, there's nothing wrong with pretty much anything you want to do as long as the semen ends up in the vagina. So, you are out of step with Chris West on that as well. You agree with the premises of my concerns about West, you apparently just don't like the conclusion - that he's a heretic. But remember, Chris West is the one who says you are wrong. You have a prudish understanding of sex or you would realize that anal sex as foreplay is morally acceptable. Freedom in Christ, and all that. Janet Smith would chastise you for attacking West's presentation by disagreeing with him. Shame on you. Steve, I respect you a lot. I am a bit upset by your position. Could you please watch the following video clips from CW and pinpoint some of the areas of concern from them? I fear the two of you will agree with each other once an understanding is met, but you will miss his meaning if you only read some of his writings. Here are two: I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness. That is my point. That is CW's point. You seem to really be trying hard to not see this, and to find ways to confuse the message trying to be sent from CW. Please copy the entire text here with page number. If memory serves, I believe he has stated such activities are not explicitly against church teachings, but still might not be a good idea. You simply are cherry picking again out of context. Please refer to the video clips I linked. I have no concerns about West. The two of you agree on more than you realize, but seem to express it in two different ways. I hold to the hope that this is true. However, Johnnyjoe's comment seems to be a more reasonable conclusion: Call no man father. JWilson, "I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness" Well, as a matter of fact, I don't know that I agree. If they are contemplating marriage, then they are undoubtedly contemplating sex. You don't marry someone you don't want to have sex with. The whole point of marriage is that it's a vocation. If marriage is your vocation from God, that means you aren't complete until you are married. So, it may be that this couple has, indeed, grown as far as they can in holiness given the graces they are meant to have marriage versus the graces they actually have in their hands right now lack of marriage graces. Chris West doesn't seem to account for the grace of vocation, or any sacramental grace, for that matter. But, you say this is your point. Then, you say this is CW's point. There is nothing in his statement which indicates your supposition is correct. If he had said the couple displayed virtue, I might grant you the point. But he denied that they displayed virtue. He didn't qualify it later, he didn't modify it, he kept saying it over and over. They didn't display virtue. Continence is not a virtue. He released a 2nd edition precisely because the 1st edition was getting so much heat on that point. You can't get a copy of the first edition anymore. Furthermore, anal foreplay IS against church teachings. Smith and Waldstein have argued they aren't, but they have provided ZERO proof of their contention, while all the manuals inveigh against anal sex of any kind. Look, this is how West plays the game. Westians never deal with what is actually said. In his clip "http: You say that's cool and great that West is so insightful on Hefner. He holds up a blank sheet, says it holds "a beautiful painting", crumples it, then says Hugh Hefner tried to rescue that crumpled, beautiful painting out of the trash. Now, all Hefner ever did was take pictures of naked women. So, West is implying this "beautiful picture" is a picture of a naked woman. He's saying we should all be able to look at naked women without any problem. He then goes on to talk about our bodies being holy. All fine and good. But he ends by making the implicit claim that because of Christ, we should be able to see naked bodies without the problems of concupiscence, which is the same implicit claim he started with when he pulled the blank-Hefner-sheet out of the trash. Back in the late 's, West made the self-same argument to two of the most renowned popular theologians in the Catholic world today - he said that if he properly implemented TOB, he should be able to look at their naked wives without a problem. Both of theologians jumped down his throat pointing out that he was thereby denying the Catholic doctrine on concupiscence. The organization taping the program canned the interview because West was obviously expressing heterodox views. All West has done in this video is change his language so his flawed understanding of concupiscence isn't as obvious. As far as his doctrine goes, he hasn't changed a damned thing. It's still there in his presentation. The Arians and the semi-Pelagians used to pull the same crap. You are putting words in my mouth. West is reminding us that the original nakedness and sexuality of humanity is good, true and beautiful. For people like me, we were raised thinking sexual pleasure was something dirty and bad that you got to get to do once you got married. Nakedness is beautiful. The way the Cistine Chapel portrays this is beautiful. Cover basics like what's encouraged and what's off-limits and how you define safe sex. And don't forget that good sex is had with whole bodies, not just the predictable parts. Ideally, we all have lips and fingers and necks and backs and butts and collarbones and nipples. Regardless of gender, the protocol remains the same: Listen—to your own body as well as the one s you are entwined with. Communicate—with sounds or words if the meaning of your noises is unclear never hesitate to ask for what you want. Above all, enjoy—learn how to become lost in your own pleasure as well as someone else's if you are already a pro at the former, practice the latter, and vice versa. And remember—practice makes perfect. Y our soundtrack for amour is important. Don't blow it by playing Christian rock or ska. Certain musical styles have been proven—through rigorous experiments in the field—to set optimal moods and attitudes geared for enhancing sexual performance in Homo sapiens. Hell, just perusing Ohio Players' LP covers should get you hornier than a submarine full of seamen. If manic rhythms with extreme frequencies stimulate you to ecstatic heights, check out the roster of DFA Records; two lengthy comps of the NYC label's output exist for your delectation, ready to score your scores till the break of dawn—or dusk. Last but not least, metronomic, lush techno and deep house music will also put some robust buck in your bang. E very college worth its salt has one—a library where men gather in the appropriately named men's room to revel in their manliness and perhaps leave spooge stains on the floor. But how does one find such men's rooms? Ask the librarian? Follow the scent of CK One and self-loathing? Simply follow the clues below. Seattle University: Rumor has it that the facilities located on the library's third and fourth floors are sex central. Sexy shame-based bonus: God—the ultimate dean of the Jesuit SU—is watching! And He doesn't like what he sees! University of Washington: Seattle Central Community College: There are no rumors about this place. But according to Seattle gay historian Adrian Ryan, "the culinary department's men's potty resembles the last days of the Roman Empire! Cornish College of the Arts: This library is extremely small. Proceed with caution, unless you are an extremely small person, in which case revel in open dirtiness wherever! S ometimes things happen, like babies. Sometimes, because of life, these babies need to be ended before they begin. Lucky for you, life-living lady, you live in a big, liberal city with big, liberal baby-ending options. This is probably going to be hard, but that does not mean it is the wrong thing to do or the right thing to do. For the record, just because sometimes someone regrets something does not mean that the thing should be illegal—were that the case, we would like to press criminal charges against the Great Knit Poncho Explosion of Tell whoever impregnated you to pony up some cash. An abortion can be paid for in installments. An abortion can be a pill better or it can be an operation worse. You do not have to tell your parents about your abortion thank you, Washington State! You will be okay. Here are your abortion service options in and around Seattle, listed by location. Aurora Medical Services, Broadway, Ste , , www. Wy, , www. Lacey near Olympia: I n general, it is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove yourself one. But if you must speak on an arty subject, just be honest—don't name-drop, don't make up shit about light and perspective and Freudian symbolism and postmodern theory unless you've read—and written essays about—the books. Say what you think and don't try to impress anybody , especially yourself. The great news is this: While good art is a marvelous thing to behold and even bad art can be instructive, arty events tend to attract plenty of loud-mouthed morons who will do the embarrassing talking for you. D o not use the word "foodie," and give up on finding a good substitute: There isn't one. You are merely a person who has a modicum of knowledge about, and enjoys a variety of, different foods. This is very fashionable right now, and for good reason: It's healthier than a fast- and processed-food diet, and being willing to put almost anything in your mouth is hot. Read up on the foods of different cultures Wikipedia is a fine start , and read food writing local papers, magazines, M. Try all kinds of food on the Ave; look for places that are full and that have high ratings online. Try good, inexpensive restaurants elsewhere: Go eat oysters at the awesome happy hour at Elliott's on the waterfront Alaskan Way, Pier 56, ; it's open to all ages. Find other all-ages happy hours; it's a cheap way to eat at great places. Be ready with a wish list when someone else is paying or when you have some cash. When you're broke, journey to Uwajimaya, browse and marvel! Go to the farmers market, browse, talk to people. Learn to cook. In general, with food—as with all things—do not bloviate. Rather, share your secrets. Be excited. Bring a date. They will love you. T he basic rule of how to behave at a music show is kind of the same rule that governs how to behave everywhere in life you may want to clip this one out of the paper and tack it onto your wall: Be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you, and don't be a jerk. It's that easy! Are other people moshing? Then maybe it's not a good show to be moshing at—maybe you're at a disco and you didn't notice. Are other people dancing? Maybe you would like to dance also! Is the show so crowded that you can't really move without stepping on toes and bumping into hapless spectators? Maybe you should watch it with the elbows then, buddy. Of course, this is not an ironclad rule. You are a special, unique individual—possibly more special and unique than anyone who has ever been to a rock concert! Don't be afraid to be the only person dancing or the first person jumping around and—without malice—bumping into your neighbors every show needs one first brave soul to get things moving. Just be aware that some people may not want to dance or have you moshing into them, and it would be awfully nice of you to let them enjoy the show in their own special and unique way. Y ou love music. Who doesn't? But you're also a broke college student who eats uncooked ramen for fun on a Friday night. You still want to support the artists you love, so that they can afford to keep eating ramen noodles in the style to which they've become accustomed and, more importantly, keep making the music you love. How do you do it? You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have to , you buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, and performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of contemporary art? Start by going to First Thursday, which happens on the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before. You've got better things to do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one of its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing. But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Silhouettes lewd, loopy puppetry. Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better. Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, unfuckwithable presence on the field, even though he's confined to the goalkeeper's box. And the guy with the best biography is Osvaldo Alonso, a Cuban defector who walked away from his Cuban team in a Wal-Mart in Texas a couple years ago and never looked back. It's a great fucking team—playing an old, simple, sexy game. For reasons no one's really figured out, the Sounders have higher average attendance at home games than any other team in American major-league soccer. They play at Qwest Field. You can get tickets at www. Wear green. W ell, here you are: We're known for, like, three things: Since you're stuck here until you graduate or burn out and get a job at Orange Julius, you might as well enjoy all the squirrels and splendor and shit. There's plenty to do adventurewise. Also, you can always swim in the lakes. You just walk down there and keep walking until the land ends and you are wet. It is amazing. Grow a beard or armpit hairs. Get a Nalgene bottle. And go to the Olympic Peninsula, where there is even a rain forest. I f you have a desire to spend time outdoors without getting too far away from your TV, laptop, and civilization, there's plenty of woodsy shit to do in-city. Seattle has, like, 19, parks, but Discovery Park in Magnolia is perhaps the best place in Seattle to take a long walk, smoke a joint, and eat a sandwich without being bothered. Green Lake is also a fine place to sit and ogle joggers. You can also rest in a big grassy field and watch or play a pickup basketball game at Green Lake's court, or rent a kayak or pedal boat and float around the lake. There's also a swing set and totally sweet merry-go-round, and sometimes some people do a thing involving dancing and rollerblading simultaneously, and you can watch this, and you will like it. Cal Anderson Park on Capitol Hill is beautiful in the summer—and there's a big concrete water-filled sculpture to splash around in—and Victor Steinbrueck Park, at the north end of the Pike Place Market, has a fantastic view of Puget Sound and is great for people-watching. It's also one of the best places in the city to buy crack and get stabbed by a hobo. If you have something against parks ass-hole! And here's another idea: For basically the price of a movie ticket, you can ride the ferry to Bainbridge Island and back. Just pay your fare, walk on, and there will be wind and water and such. Y ou may be asked to wear a pink hat! You are going to look so stupid! Just do it, because your life is about to get much, much, much better. The Land of Pink Hats and mandatorially naked ladies; the hats are required for hygiene reasons, ostensibly, but more likely the owners just want to have a laugh is Olympus Spa, with two locations: Tacoma and Lynnwood. These are Korean spas, which means they have everything a regular spa has hot tubs, cold plunges, steam saunas, dry saunas, massages , but they also have something called a body scrub. In a body scrub, a Korean lady scrubs your skin off. It is pretty great. At Banya 5, which is located more conveniently in South Lake Union, both men and women are allowed on coed days you wear a bathing suit , there are no pink hats, and the tradition is Russian. This means that in addition to the regular stuff see above , you can hire a person to smack you with giant leaves, according to custom. If you can, try not to think about being naked because it will make you less afraid of being naked. But I have this pink hat! W e are not Europe, yet. Soon we will be, but until then, drinking in public is illegal. What to do about this problem? No biggie. Just drink your booze from coffee cups, if you want to walk down the street; or drink in parks with lots of trees, if you do not want to disguise your booze. A bad park to drink in: Cal Anderson Park. There's not enough vegetation in that place; cops can see you in a minute. A good park for drinking: There are plenty of trees and bushes in that park, and cops almost never enter it. In general, you can mark the parks designed by the influential earlyth-century landscape designers the Olmsted Brothers Volunteer Park! The Olmsteds understood that a great park must afford the visitor a certain measure of privacy. U se the internet. The Sol Duc Hot Springs are a well-trod and paved and policed path full of families and nudists. And though the two camps frequently squabble in entertaining ways, both tend toward patronizing sanctimony and neither are much fun. In general, you'll want an at least 2. As for alcohol: Spring for champagne and sip, don't glug. As for drugs: Being lost and high in the woods in the dark is bad news we speak from experience. As for sex:.

It is virtually impossible to exercise Ure Concupiscent Arent U? virtue to Ure Concupiscent Arent U? exclusion of the others. Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the Persons of the Trinity, virtues can be distinguished, but they can never be separated. So, the exercise of virtue is not an either-or situation. But, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? as you have followed Chris West, you have gained the erroneous idea that it is, haven't you? Are you beginning to see the problem?

I've just noted two things you reveal in this conversation seem to go together nicely: You're a belligerent jerk to everyone who disagrees with you, and you once provoked a guy you manifestly hate to shove you.

I'm certainly not going to defer to their opinions because they happen to be professors. I've known too many professors. And if they want to convince me of anything, the first they have to do is characterize their interpretation of West's views in a way that isn't wildly at odds with what the guy actually says. You might try that as well. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. This freedom is a real, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? possibility if we are willing to undergo deep and painful purifications.

Ure Concupiscent Arent U? you have a prediliction to shoplift bubblegum, it would be prudent for you to avoid Ure Concupiscent Arent U? bubblegum aisle of the store. If you overcome that compulsion to the degree that you are confident it is not a likely possibility, going to great lengths to avoid the bubblegum aisle become pointless.

It's no longer prudence. Prudence hasn't changed. You have. If you are unchaste, by definition you are imprudent. You can't hold a prudent thought in your head while being unchaste with your body. You may have been unchaste with your body IN THE PAST, still haven't confessed article source sin, but through the work of actual graces you have returned to some semblance of sanity and are NOW trying to be both prudent and chaste.

You continue to hold virtues in opposition to one another, because that's what Chris West has taught you to do. The very idea is absurd. Heresy works Ure Concupiscent Arent U? when it is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? admixed with orthodoxy. It's much harder to detect the heresy that way.

That's why the man frightens me. He's good enough to be really, really dangerous. Kevin, You're right, it's clear what you meant.

That's the problem. You have an either-or understanding of virtues. Take your bubble-gum example. The ability to ignore the bubble-gum means that you have increased your abilities in the virtue of prudence and restraint. It Ure Concupiscent Arent U? mean you don't need those virtues, it means you are growing in their power. He CAN'T grow in virtue by repeatedly and deliberately putting himself in a situation that's really only article source to a married person.

Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

Find me a saint of the Church Ure Concupiscent Arent U? says you need to pursue near occasions of Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, or even Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to worry about them, in order to grow in grace, and Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

agree with you. Oh, Kevin, funny you should bring up Francis and Clare. First, to answer your question, they were both under religious vows, which gave them graces to maintain their virtues. But, I heard Christopher West specifically call out St.

Francis as an example NOT to follow because he threw himself into a rose bush in order to quiet his concupiscence. West claimed that this was a see more understanding of the theology of the body. So I'm very glad that you brought those two into the conversation. This all boils down to asking WHY is it prudent to avoid certain situations.

It is prudent because of the likelihood that you will give in to temptation and sin. It isn't Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

mere possibility of sin that makes avoidance Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, but the degree of likelihood. The possibility exists always and everywhere. Obviously some judgment is involved, and there is a grey area where it is unclear if the likelihood of sinning is large Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to warrant avoiding the situation. A big part of assessing the likelihood of sin is to take stock of your character. We never achieve perfection in this life, but we move towards perfection as we conform ourselves to Christ.

That said, it seems perfectly obvious that as our hearts are more conformed to Christ, it becomes less and less likely that being a single person alone with a person of the opposite sex would lead to sin.

At a certain point, it is no longer required by prudence to avoid the situation. And of course, some people have a longer journey to get to that point than others, depending on many things such as their personality and their history.

You say that being alone with the person you are courting is "a situation that's really only proper to a married person. If it is improper, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? is because the couple should avoid the near occasion of sin. That's the only reason that's been offered in this conversation, anyway. If it is the near occasion of sin, that is because it is a situation in which it Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

likely that the couple will actually sin meaning a sin distinct from the alleged sin of being alone together. And that all hangs, of course, on how likely it is, in reality, that they will sin. As with any case, the couple themselves are called to make a judgment about that likelihood. Note that this is not "pursuing near occasions of sin", it is evaluating whether one exists. So I repeat, you are begging the question. If I wanted Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

pursue a near occasion of sin, I would first have to determine that Ure Concupiscent Arent U? existed, and then pursue it. Finally, you may judge, in your best estimation, that any unmarried couple being alone together is pretty much always a near occasion of sin.

Fine, I happen to disagree. But I don't think that there is any point in this conversation where an honest reading of what I've written can support the accusations of heresy that you have been Ure Concupiscent Arent U?.

Your interpretation of me as "hold[ing] virtues in opposition to one another" and promoting pursuing occasions of sin is just not supported. You're too quick to attack without understanding what the person means. That anonymous Ure Concupiscent Arent U? and this one is by "Kevin". The log-in seems to be malfunctioning right now. I am amazed that people claim an error in the principle of Charity in Truth for pointing out comments that are clearly out of line with Catholic Ure Concupiscent Arent U?.

It would be one thing if it was an educational moment for someone who doesn't understand what they are saying because they don't have the background, but if West really didn't understand what his words were implying, he needs a job Ure Concupiscent Arent U? of any educational activities. This is the theological arena where wording means everything. Patrick, obviously your amazement is "Ure Concupiscent Arent U?" by your belief that West was "clearly out of line with Catholic teaching.

I for Ure Concupiscent Arent U? am unacquainted with the TOB and with both Steve's and West's approach to it, but I can't help finding really strange that Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

cheerleaders here have to resort to mob-lynching against Steve offering no rational argument for it, as Ure Concupiscent Arent U? Christopher West were a kind of "Ferris Bueller" of Catholic celebrities everyone is supposed to like and agree with. Obviously, it is not a sin to simply be together in the same room alone.

However, all the Ure Concupiscent Arent U? necessary for sin is present. Now, Kevin, I agree that you have made yourself much more clear in your last post. But you must agree that your first few stabs at it were not clear - I can't read minds, all I can do is go by what is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? on the page. Chris West has been giving talks for a long, long time. He hasn't gotten any clearer in his presentations over that time.

His wording, his failure to appreciate or provide nuance, this is what is killing him. Nestorius didn't MEAN to be a heretic. He thought he was right - indeed, both he and Arius caused the emperor to call the councils which deposed and condemned both of them. Good intent is not enough. Their WORDS are burned when their works are burnedeven when the heretics are not which was most of the time - they usually just got banished.

His intent is beside the point. Ure Concupiscent Arent U? comments are mere croaking in comparison. You have been warned, and you continue your obstinance at the peril of your own soul. I'm sure the next step is to start bitching about those "Novus Ordo" katholics. I don't have a "URL" because I don't have a website. Are my criticisms less credible because I don't have a website? As it were, it is a sad thing, really. As Columcille observed, even if you are "right", you lose - I Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

pray it isn't your soul. I have challenged you on this point in every post of mine, and in every response you have avoided it. You are twisting West's words to fit your plan, and now you are so deep into this project, to turn back appears nearly impossible. You have drunk deeply from the bitter cup of self-righteousness, and the devil thus has you by Ure Concupiscent Arent U? short hairs. It is a broad and easy road to declare yourself a greater authority than the Church leadership.

You hold much more in common with Luther than with Aquinas, and as long learn more here you resist any humble self assessment about your motivations, you will continue down a destructive path.

Since you take not fraternal correction but only redouble your Ure Concupiscent Arent U? at the challengeI will offer my Peace to you. This vendetta will end as Ure Concupiscent Arent U? vendettas end - in the death of a soul. Source God take the time to get your attention Ure Concupiscent Arent U? you cause any further rents in the Body of Christ. Johnnyjoe, Have you considered the possibility that the "fruit" here originates with Christopher West?

This drama is centered around West, not me. I don't have Alice von Hildebrand Ure Concupiscent Arent U? down my neck. I haven't been publicly repudiated for bad theology by the people who gave me my MA in theology. It ain't me that's brought out these fruits - these are the fruits of Christopher Ure Concupiscent Arent U? teachings. Buy a clue. Steve, On the contrary, intent is nearly everything.

Words just do not have one specific meaning. For one thing, there aren't nearly enough of them for that kind of rigor. Nevertheless we can hope to communicate clearly if both parties do their job.

That means the listener needs to be asking "how can I understand the speaker in a way that makes sense? Chris Ure Concupiscent Arent U? does not aim his presentation at theologians. He is communicating to common people that have a lot of misconceptions about very basic ideas about chastity.

One of the things he is always trying to drive home is that we should be trying and striving to become truly chaste in our minds and hearts, which involves having a positive outlook on sexuality. You can't just say this once and expect it to read more. You've got to say it a thousand times in a thousand ways before people start to really get it.

When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who Ure Concupiscent Arent U? him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things.

Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you Ure Concupiscent Arent U? avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin.

None of the heretical readings you have offered are Ure Concupiscent Arent U?. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar click at this page, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage.

Nude intercoarse Watch Video Sex con. It ain't me that's brought out these fruits - these are the fruits of Christopher West's teachings. Buy a clue. Steve, On the contrary, intent is nearly everything. Words just do not have one specific meaning. For one thing, there aren't nearly enough of them for that kind of rigor. Nevertheless we can hope to communicate clearly if both parties do their job. That means the listener needs to be asking "how can I understand the speaker in a way that makes sense? Chris West does not aim his presentation at theologians. He is communicating to common people that have a lot of misconceptions about very basic ideas about chastity. One of the things he is always trying to drive home is that we should be trying and striving to become truly chaste in our minds and hearts, which involves having a positive outlook on sexuality. You can't just say this once and expect it to stick. You've got to say it a thousand times in a thousand ways before people start to really get it. When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who hears him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things. Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you must avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin. None of the heretical readings you have offered are warranted. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar idea, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage. You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people are capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand. If people aren't striving to be truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they? Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with better ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and striving for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations. Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that he believes that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state. Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since St. Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, but not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would not remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that. As for the Westian canon of four-fold action, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. West's message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot West. Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide behind, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them. I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow is dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective than any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. After following this, I must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to temptation in courtship. To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this fictional "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints. To flee such situations is the only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is to promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack. It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that can be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula. I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is the first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur. As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in his Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is to realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom. INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that. The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, although there may be slight differences between those two ideas. I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves or to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the determination of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help of a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances. I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone? Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin the SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two? Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin? I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when no sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be an occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something?? Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how absurd this is if you compare it to other situations. For some, being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day? For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other side of the aisle"? For some people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat. If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to develop the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the expectation of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable. But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical proximity raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of sin through their awareness of the danger and their moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or situation. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue. Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind. Is it easier to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to avoid the near occasion of sin. I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he wants to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater heights of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary. The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with someone we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous. Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, but if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim that West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone. Your abrasive and hostile language in this entire discussion kind of disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his prison room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, slammed the door on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation. According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you? What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's. These people set you up to argue with me and are now leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how to play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin. It is. We have a different word for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be morally neutral, and it clearly is not. I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Now, am I putting word into West's mouth? No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. He's making another point entirely. I realize this may be counter-intuitive, but when somebody is speaking english and their language takes the form "a is b", they don't necessarily mean it to be taken in the absolute sense, the way a logician means it. Language is a complex and subtle thing. The important thing is whether his meaning is being successfully conveyed to his listeners. I continue to believe that if you surveyed people coming out of his talks, asking them "Does Chris West teach that there is nothing at all virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin? If those two people disagree on some matter of truth, either one may be right, but if they disagree on what West's message is, it seems reasonable to give the benefit of the doubt to the supporter. I get the feeling that if Chris West himself were to come here and try to explain what he meant, you'd still tell him he meant something else. One last thing. I am obviously a fellow who likes a good debate. Accusing them of "cult tactics" because they give up trying to argue with you is, wow, pretty paranoid and demented, now that I think about it. I don't think continuing this discussion is good for you, and I think I will do the right thing and end it. Brendan is correct - deliberately entering an occasion for sin is a sin. Kevin, as far as your remark: The Church disagrees with your assessment. You seem to think that we can't believe what someone says. I think we can. You haven't been tracking what West has been doing and saying for the last ten years. As a professional speaker, that was and is part of what I have to do - keep track of what prominent Catholics are saying and doing. In the last ten years, I see no evidence Chris West has ever changed his mind. He has just changed his tactics. This is a very interesting discusion. Considering the remarks that have come from Kevin, I think it may be important to remind him that catholic moral theology has traditionally recognized 4 natural virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity. Thomas Aquinas treats chastity under the heading of temperance. When Steve says the virtues do not act against one another, what he means is that your virture of prudence assists you in being temperate, as do your other virtues. The virtues comliment one another. It seems that it is not clear to some here that prudence is properly speaking a virtue In some places Kevin seems to be speaking of it as a faculty or a power or a tool, and not a virtue properly speaking. For that matter it is a virtue on a higher order than chastity--if want to speak "in the true Thomistic sense". Steve, I am a bit shocked by your harsh critique of CW. I find your presentation of evidence very lacking. You seem to be trying very hard to find something wrong with his work by cherry picking a few of his sentences. There is a lot of twisting going on here. You are both sons of the Church. I invite you to re-examine your motives. JWilson, I haven't presented all the evidence, just what's present in one talk on one night. If you want all the evidence, we would have to walk through a lot of his talks on a lot of different nights. Why don't you take CW's statements before the Blessed Sacrament? Ask God if it's really the case that running away from a near occasion of sin is not a virtue. See what He says. Steve, Take CW's words before the blessed sacrament? I sure have. TOB, as taught to me through CW, convinced me wadding in the tiber was not enough to live a full life in Christ. Running from sin not a virtue? Of course this is the correct action for one to take who cannot control themselves. I strongly feel you cherry picked this virtue quote out of context to shred him. This is not the fullness of what God calls us to. This groom-to-be should not lift his nose in triumph, arms at hips, and declare he has matured in virtue because he did not do anything 'dirty'. Yet, it is just this attitude CW is condemning here. It is the same attitude that took me in the spiritual gutter in my college days. Coming from a Puritanical response to unchastity we sometimes forget God's will for us to see the situation without lust or disgust, but beauty. If you really need me to explain this more, let me know. The rigidity of the fine toothed comb you are raking over CW is baffling. They are not the same. I will go with what I know. You make me feel like I am back to my days of yore when I had to debate Protestant fundamentalist over calling men father. I invite you to avoid dragging peoples' names through the mud and attaching heretical terms to them until you are fully ready to provide very strong evidence. That being said, can we meet for coffee some time? I am buddies with Dav. You have missed the larger discussion point here. Good intentions do not stop someone from making heretical statements. Those statements should be challenged if not correct so that those who do not have a theological background are not misled. If you know of someone, who should know better as a teacher of the faith, making these types of statements even occasionally you should be questioning either their competency or their intent. So, is such a person ready to marry or should he wait until he has better self-control? A virtuous person will run from sin. However, such a person has not yet been fully perfected in virtue, especially if they only hold to a dualist view of sexuality. A person with a perverted contemporary view of sexuality may need further marital preparation if they see sex as something either dirty and 'pornish' or that the honeymoon bed is an opportunity to try every self-indulgent act they have ever heard of on late night cable. Such attitudes can harm a young marriage. Well, JWilson, Chris West disagrees with you: Christian, know thyself. But we must not call that virtue. It is NOT virtuous to run away. Continence is NOT virtue. In his "Good News" he explicitly says anal sex as foreplay is perfectly acceptable, there's nothing wrong with pretty much anything you want to do as long as the semen ends up in the vagina. So, you are out of step with Chris West on that as well. You agree with the premises of my concerns about West, you apparently just don't like the conclusion - that he's a heretic. But remember, Chris West is the one who says you are wrong. You have a prudish understanding of sex or you would realize that anal sex as foreplay is morally acceptable. Freedom in Christ, and all that. Janet Smith would chastise you for attacking West's presentation by disagreeing with him. Shame on you. Steve, I respect you a lot. I am a bit upset by your position. Could you please watch the following video clips from CW and pinpoint some of the areas of concern from them? I fear the two of you will agree with each other once an understanding is met, but you will miss his meaning if you only read some of his writings. Here are two: I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness. That is my point. That is CW's point. You seem to really be trying hard to not see this, and to find ways to confuse the message trying to be sent from CW. Please copy the entire text here with page number. If memory serves, I believe he has stated such activities are not explicitly against church teachings, but still might not be a good idea. You simply are cherry picking again out of context. Please refer to the video clips I linked. I have no concerns about West. The two of you agree on more than you realize, but seem to express it in two different ways. I hold to the hope that this is true. However, Johnnyjoe's comment seems to be a more reasonable conclusion: Call no man father. JWilson, "I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness" Well, as a matter of fact, I don't know that I agree. If they are contemplating marriage, then they are undoubtedly contemplating sex. You don't marry someone you don't want to have sex with. The whole point of marriage is that it's a vocation. If marriage is your vocation from God, that means you aren't complete until you are married. So, it may be that this couple has, indeed, grown as far as they can in holiness given the graces they are meant to have marriage versus the graces they actually have in their hands right now lack of marriage graces. Chris West doesn't seem to account for the grace of vocation, or any sacramental grace, for that matter. But, you say this is your point. Then, you say this is CW's point. There is nothing in his statement which indicates your supposition is correct. If he had said the couple displayed virtue, I might grant you the point. But he denied that they displayed virtue. He didn't qualify it later, he didn't modify it, he kept saying it over and over. They didn't display virtue. Continence is not a virtue. He released a 2nd edition precisely because the 1st edition was getting so much heat on that point. You can't get a copy of the first edition anymore. Furthermore, anal foreplay IS against church teachings. Smith and Waldstein have argued they aren't, but they have provided ZERO proof of their contention, while all the manuals inveigh against anal sex of any kind. Look, this is how West plays the game. Westians never deal with what is actually said. In his clip "http: You say that's cool and great that West is so insightful on Hefner. He holds up a blank sheet, says it holds "a beautiful painting", crumples it, then says Hugh Hefner tried to rescue that crumpled, beautiful painting out of the trash. Now, all Hefner ever did was take pictures of naked women. So, West is implying this "beautiful picture" is a picture of a naked woman. He's saying we should all be able to look at naked women without any problem. He then goes on to talk about our bodies being holy. All fine and good. But he ends by making the implicit claim that because of Christ, we should be able to see naked bodies without the problems of concupiscence, which is the same implicit claim he started with when he pulled the blank-Hefner-sheet out of the trash. Back in the late 's, West made the self-same argument to two of the most renowned popular theologians in the Catholic world today - he said that if he properly implemented TOB, he should be able to look at their naked wives without a problem. Both of theologians jumped down his throat pointing out that he was thereby denying the Catholic doctrine on concupiscence. The organization taping the program canned the interview because West was obviously expressing heterodox views. All West has done in this video is change his language so his flawed understanding of concupiscence isn't as obvious. As far as his doctrine goes, he hasn't changed a damned thing. It's still there in his presentation. The Arians and the semi-Pelagians used to pull the same crap. You are putting words in my mouth. West is reminding us that the original nakedness and sexuality of humanity is good, true and beautiful. For people like me, we were raised thinking sexual pleasure was something dirty and bad that you got to get to do once you got married. Nakedness is beautiful. The way the Cistine Chapel portrays this is beautiful. The way Playboy portrays nakedness is twisted. With the eyes of Christ, we should be able to see the beauty of nakedness as Michaelangelo portrayed it, not the Hefner way. Also, CW is not denying that some born again saints may see the Cistine Chapel and lust, but I believe he agrees we should realize there is a beauty beyond such disordered passion. Both of theologians jumped down his throat Saints have been dismissed by even bishops before. Show me the link to the magisterial document. Tell me the paragraph number in the catechism. I am under the impression such teaching has never been codified. You copy and paste half of one and now you have presented the full CW? Come on Steve. Over and over. People like me grew up with the options of seeing sexuality as a nihistic free for all or that it is a dirty act that we undergo for some good reason. The Hefners of the world profess sexuality is a recreational activity. The Puritans avoided it, sweeping the issue under the rug. The truth is in a third way. Sexuality is beautiful. Our [mine and others] version of it has become damaged. Christ shows us there is a pure and beautiful way. This is the message of TOB. This is the message of CW. CW is not a proper theologian. He is a speaker and a spiritual author who is teaching to a set audience that is not the larger theological body of the church. If you read him as a strict theologian, I can understand how one might be taken back. However, if you read him from the target audience perspective, you get a different view than the one you are condemning through your blog. See him from this view, and I think you will find your accusations of heresy assuaged. Thank you Steve. Everything you say is right. I have attended West's talks and left appalled and embarrassed. I appreciate those people who have returned to the church because they were finally told by CW that sex wasn't bad, but he was merely the occasion of their return, not the cause. I appreciate those people who in their own goodness of heart can pull out the beauty and truth about sex, nakedness, etc. But again - that reflects those good people, not CW. David Schindler is arguably the greatest American theologian. Carl Anderson, head of the Knights of Columbus, requested Schindler's article for the Knights website. As a commentator pointed out on another site, the 1 reason for CW's problems is his lack of understanding of the 4th Lateran Council's "greater dissimilitude" statement: But instead most people just make the same mistake over and over: He is getting it out badly. Yes, some on this site came back to the Church after hearing CW. Instead, CW has cornered the market with his very lucrative snake oil, and he will attack anyone who threatens his business plan. He's a Rohrschach for you. You impute to him whatever good motives you wish you had. Unfortunately, his very words convict him. Everyone keeps talking about West's address of Puritanism or Manicheanism. A Prove it. Quote someone besides a Westian who holds to that view. It's absolutely a violation of the history to make the statement. B The charge could equally be made that West is: As for problems with anal sex, not only can we point to Summa Theologica, 2a2ae, q, a1, Since anal sex, even anal foreplay, involves extremely unhygenic and therefore dangerous sexual practice, especially in reference to the female, it is forbidden simply on those grounds alone. That West or Smith or anyone else even attempts to justify it is ludicrous on its face, as even Slate pointed out http: We DO agree on one thing: If West is not a proper theologian, and we both agree he is not, then he is not an Athanasian or a Thomist either. I think you are right about many of the points you make about CW. I do think the heart of what he says is right and you have cherry-picked a few errors here and there. It is a good thing to do whan done charitably. Your tone does not feel very charitable to me. I hope your heart is not as hateful as it seems from your post. We must simply recall that bishops have frequently backed extremely erroneous teachers and teachings. Indeed, nearly every major heresy of the Church was started or actively supported by an ordained man or men. I do object to making your opinion more important than the bishops. Every pro-abortion Catholic can find theologians who agree with him. The Catholic faith is defined by the bishops and popes. It is not defined by you. I do not doubt that West gets a few things wrong. I also do not doubt that he wants to communicate the ideas of John Paul II as accurately as possible. As Catholics we need to explain to this world why we feel God's sexual morality is logical and beautiful. He is one on the few to make that case rather than just making rules. Randy, I've explained exactly how Chris West is distorting Catholic teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography. In none of those cases did I refer to my opinion. I referred to the constant teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography. Chris West's words do not follow the teachings of the Church. The only way you can force them into the Church's mold is to read Chris West's "intentions" into the words. I am unable to read minds, so I have not the skill to read his unspoken intentions. I can only read his words. Thus, the only one bringing "opinions" to the table is the Westians. Chris West is not the only one making the Church's case. Nor, for that matter, is he the only one distorting the Church's case. He is, however, the only one distorting the Church's case while pretending to present the Church's case. The story has nothing to do with Christoper West. Nothing at all. Rather it is yet another example of Steve Kellmeyer prosecuting his personal vendetta against Christopher West. Fraternal joy, charity, forgiveness, constructive action, all of these have been set aflame before the idol of Steve's vindictive personality and blind rage. Well done Steve. How does that joyless acidic vindictive spirit play in the market place, eh? I bet speaking invitations are pouring in. Just can't keep the phone on the hook, eh? The people just can't get enough of your distinctive style of bitterness, private inquisition, with the cherry of Catholic doctrine on top. What a winning combination. I've told you before that you are hurting your reputation as a Catholic presenter, and gaining one as a Catholic hypocrite. Previously I've shared with you that Truth is impotent without Charity. Now it seems that you have even rejected the standards of truth in waging your war against the person of Christopher West with this latest headline attack. Like I said, I organize Catholic speakers to come to a major urban diocese. Most of the speakers I talk to have filled calendars with speaking engagements. Steve, I would not invite you to come and speak and I would recommend the same to others. Because you lack charity. I see from your calendar of speaking engagements that you have a total of 3 events scheduled for the entire year. Steve, I would get up from your computer, go into the other room and take a look contemplative look at your wife and children and then ask yourself if they are worth sacrificing at the altar of your personal vendetta against Christopher West. Your war is hurting them because it is hurting your ability to draw speaking engagements. By the way, your war is also hurting the Church. Spend a day away from your computer and go to an adoration chapel. I've explained exactly how Chris West is distorting Catholic teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography I read that. I said you points are mostly valid. They are minor and nitpicky but it is good to get the details right. Chris is not a man of few words. His intentions are clear if you listen to him talk long enough. Does he get everything right? Who does? But to accuse him of distorting the teaching of the church is just not accurate. You don't get out much. Almost every Catholic University has many professors who pretend to be teaching the Catholic faith when they are not. This is the rule not the exception. Most Catholic educators teach that contraception, homosexuality, abortion, masturbation, etc. Chris accepts the churches teachings. He explains them well. Would I defend all his analogies and sweeping statements? He does over-state things sometimes. This is why critiques are good. But you need to remember that he is one of us. This makes me wonder if you ever listen to him. I'm a very late comer to this conversation, and the invective is pretty surprising. I do know that some very learned people that are far more educated on this subject than I will ever be have some very serious concerns about West's work. There are also a number who seem to think his work is wonderful. However, being a guy with a job and wife and six kids and trying to grow in the Grace of God, I tend to be pretty conservative and stick to the classics of theology, from Acquinas to a Kempis. This discussion encourages me to stay away from West - whether Steve K. I don't know that West offers anything of such great value as to run the risk of exposing myself or my family to faulty Catholic theology. I will say this - I sure hate to see comments telling Steve to go look in the mirror and see what he's doing to his family by arguing for what he thinks is right, and with what to me is a very reasonable critique. That's a pretty low shot, and not terribly "charitable. It does seem somewhat strange that some of West's defenders certainly seem to take any critique of him, even one stingingly presented, as a personal affront. I've seen this other places, and leads to some questions as to their motives. This is the first time I've come across Kellmeyer's critique of West's work. I am not a theologian but I am married to one and I am accustomed to this type of writing: One theologian discussing, dissecting, weighing the words of another. I did not see any ad hominem but only a serious discussion of the public theology of West. For those of you who have not had the opportunity to spend time in academic circles I assure you that this is entirely normal! And expected. Particularly for very public theologians who have a great responsibility to ensure that EVERY word is precise and true. A man who publicly advances a theological position should expect and welcome an academic challenge. He should also have or develop a very thick skin because heated debate is a part of his chosen profession. I was sorry that I afterward stepped into the muck and grime of this comment board. Much of the discussion here does not follow in the tradition of true academic debate although it pretends to. There was no personal attack in the original post; it addresses the theology of West, who is a PUBLIC teacher and aught to expect be held accountable in this way. But the attacks against the author are clearly personal. Also, after reading most of the comments here I am a little stunned by a running idea that goes something like this: I have to say that the longer I live the more I realize that virtue never ceases to be an intense struggle. It changes but it does not stop. It is the reason that great Christian men and women have fallen after a lifetime of faithfulness. It never ceases to be a battle and I object to any efforts that contrive to take our eyes off that ball. I avoid being alone with men other than my husband not including family members. I don't accept rides home with them. I do not have them to my home without other adults in company. I do not spend unnecessary long periods of time on the phone with them. I do not develop internet relationships with them. I do not listen to Chris West talks in mixed company. Is this because I have no self-control? Or because I am attracted to everything that moves? It is because I have an excellent knowledge of human nature being human after all and do not wish to even cultivate the opportunity for an eye and heart that does not see only my husband; or present any man with a similar trial to his virtue. This is not my particular weakness, but sanctity of my marriage covenant is that important to me. It is the same with my Lord. As a Christian, the only thing I am supposed to fear is separation from Him. How many of the saints have told us to flee from sin?! I hope to never be led to a place of false security where I let down my guard enough to believe that "I am now strong enough". Most of you writing and commenting are men. West is a man. God bless all of your intentions but your perspectives are skewed by that. You haven't spent your lives being pursued and cajoled and ogled over like a woman has. You haven't sat next to a man of remarkable reputation and virtue and watched him succumb to his baser desires to look or touch or speak in ways to make a woman blush. You might be surprised by how many solid Catholic men single and married struggle with control of their eyes, words and hands. Or maybe you wouldn't really be very surprised. God-fearing, Catholic men are not immune to this difficulty. They are just more ashamed afterwards than their pagan counterparts. To say that a young man would have the mature control that older men struggle to have is a difficulty. It fails to take into account an intense biological fact that has no release in the security of marriage. Protecting the virtue and purity of his beloved should be his primary goal. If this requires spending most of his precious time with her in public and semi-public places, he should not hesitate to do so. Love requires it. It is a sacrificial love that will blossom so sweetly in the grace of Marriage! These are the most comments I've ever seen under one of Steve's blogposts. M asturbate. A lot. Try different positions, different toys, different orifices and beyond. Try for different types of orgasms—don't just go for a direct hit unless you only have five minutes in a public bathroom. Indulge yourself; foreplay isn't just for when other people are around. Play with your fantasies, kinks, and desires. Read up on female sexuality and erotica. Confidence is key when it comes to sex—and the more you try out, the more you will know what works for you and the less timid you'll be about your own and other people's bodies. Plus, that post-orgasm glow looks really good on you. Everyone's bodies and brains are different, even when you are working with similar parts. Rid yourself of preconceived notions about what ladies do with lady parts. You don't have to be romantic and slow. Don't be afraid to fuck. Ask for and take what you want remembering to make sure everyone involved is on board, of course. Embrace the fluidity that female sexuality has to offer, and play with all the tools you were given and the ones you've bought. Your hands are your primary tools, so get ready to get arm-deep. With patience and lots of talking you can look forward to fisting, G-spot orgasms, and ejaculating. Strap-ons can also be powerful and exciting. Psychic dick is an amazing thing to experience—so if you are game, it's worth investing in. Any previously acquired cock-sucking skills can still come in handy when working with silicone. And don't neglect your classic oral-sex techniques. Three 6 Mafia and the rest of us would rather get some head, and you have the advantage on giving a lady what she really wants. Y ou're going to need some lube. Get a water-based lube because it's condom-safe and it won't take a thousand years to wash off. You can graduate to oil-based lubes when you and what's-his-name move in together, commit to a monogamous relationship, decide to give up condoms since you're only doing each other, and take up marathon fucking. To suck dick successfully, hold it at the base with one hand, put your mouth over what's remaining, and move your hand and mouth up and down together. If you're going to rim someone: Ask first about his STD and hepatitis status, make sure he's showered and his butt is sparkly clean, then spread his butt cheeks and go for it. Always ask, "What's your HIV status? Don't put a perfect stranger's dick in your mouth, or any dick with sores on it, and don't eat a perfect stranger's butt. Parks, bathhouses, and campus bathrooms are not the answer: Old men covered in diseases go there looking for young guys who don't know any better. If you're not old enough to get into Pony, try online— Adam4Adam. Always meet for coffee first many guys on the internet have attractive photos but turn out be obese aliens , and don't do anything that doesn't feel right. M aybe you feel like you were born in the wrong body, maybe you love your body but everyone else seems confused about it, maybe you've had surgery or are on hormones, maybe you bind or tuck or accessorize to feel comfortable with or define your gender. Or maybe you just want to fuck someone who does. But before you hit the sack or stacks, see below , have at least one actual conversation about sex with your date. Cover basics like what's encouraged and what's off-limits and how you define safe sex. And don't forget that good sex is had with whole bodies, not just the predictable parts. Ideally, we all have lips and fingers and necks and backs and butts and collarbones and nipples. Regardless of gender, the protocol remains the same: Listen—to your own body as well as the one s you are entwined with. Communicate—with sounds or words if the meaning of your noises is unclear never hesitate to ask for what you want. Above all, enjoy—learn how to become lost in your own pleasure as well as someone else's if you are already a pro at the former, practice the latter, and vice versa. And remember—practice makes perfect. Y our soundtrack for amour is important. Don't blow it by playing Christian rock or ska. Certain musical styles have been proven—through rigorous experiments in the field—to set optimal moods and attitudes geared for enhancing sexual performance in Homo sapiens. Hell, just perusing Ohio Players' LP covers should get you hornier than a submarine full of seamen. If manic rhythms with extreme frequencies stimulate you to ecstatic heights, check out the roster of DFA Records; two lengthy comps of the NYC label's output exist for your delectation, ready to score your scores till the break of dawn—or dusk. Last but not least, metronomic, lush techno and deep house music will also put some robust buck in your bang. E very college worth its salt has one—a library where men gather in the appropriately named men's room to revel in their manliness and perhaps leave spooge stains on the floor. But how does one find such men's rooms? Ask the librarian? Follow the scent of CK One and self-loathing? Simply follow the clues below. Seattle University: Rumor has it that the facilities located on the library's third and fourth floors are sex central. Sexy shame-based bonus: God—the ultimate dean of the Jesuit SU—is watching! And He doesn't like what he sees! University of Washington: Seattle Central Community College: There are no rumors about this place. But according to Seattle gay historian Adrian Ryan, "the culinary department's men's potty resembles the last days of the Roman Empire! Cornish College of the Arts: This library is extremely small. Proceed with caution, unless you are an extremely small person, in which case revel in open dirtiness wherever! S ometimes things happen, like babies. Sometimes, because of life, these babies need to be ended before they begin. Lucky for you, life-living lady, you live in a big, liberal city with big, liberal baby-ending options. This is probably going to be hard, but that does not mean it is the wrong thing to do or the right thing to do. For the record, just because sometimes someone regrets something does not mean that the thing should be illegal—were that the case, we would like to press criminal charges against the Great Knit Poncho Explosion of Tell whoever impregnated you to pony up some cash. An abortion can be paid for in installments. An abortion can be a pill better or it can be an operation worse. You do not have to tell your parents about your abortion thank you, Washington State! You will be okay. Here are your abortion service options in and around Seattle, listed by location. Aurora Medical Services, Broadway, Ste , , www. Wy, , www. Lacey near Olympia: I n general, it is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove yourself one. But if you must speak on an arty subject, just be honest—don't name-drop, don't make up shit about light and perspective and Freudian symbolism and postmodern theory unless you've read—and written essays about—the books. Say what you think and don't try to impress anybody , especially yourself. The great news is this: While good art is a marvelous thing to behold and even bad art can be instructive, arty events tend to attract plenty of loud-mouthed morons who will do the embarrassing talking for you. D o not use the word "foodie," and give up on finding a good substitute: There isn't one. You are merely a person who has a modicum of knowledge about, and enjoys a variety of, different foods. This is very fashionable right now, and for good reason: It's healthier than a fast- and processed-food diet, and being willing to put almost anything in your mouth is hot. Read up on the foods of different cultures Wikipedia is a fine start , and read food writing local papers, magazines, M. Try all kinds of food on the Ave; look for places that are full and that have high ratings online. Try good, inexpensive restaurants elsewhere: Go eat oysters at the awesome happy hour at Elliott's on the waterfront Alaskan Way, Pier 56, ; it's open to all ages. Find other all-ages happy hours; it's a cheap way to eat at great places. Be ready with a wish list when someone else is paying or when you have some cash. When you're broke, journey to Uwajimaya, browse and marvel! Go to the farmers market, browse, talk to people. Learn to cook. In general, with food—as with all things—do not bloviate. Rather, share your secrets. Be excited. Bring a date. They will love you. T he basic rule of how to behave at a music show is kind of the same rule that governs how to behave everywhere in life you may want to clip this one out of the paper and tack it onto your wall: Be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you, and don't be a jerk. It's that easy! Are other people moshing? Then maybe it's not a good show to be moshing at—maybe you're at a disco and you didn't notice. Are other people dancing? Maybe you would like to dance also! Is the show so crowded that you can't really move without stepping on toes and bumping into hapless spectators? Maybe you should watch it with the elbows then, buddy. Of course, this is not an ironclad rule. You are a special, unique individual—possibly more special and unique than anyone who has ever been to a rock concert! Don't be afraid to be the only person dancing or the first person jumping around and—without malice—bumping into your neighbors every show needs one first brave soul to get things moving. Just be aware that some people may not want to dance or have you moshing into them, and it would be awfully nice of you to let them enjoy the show in their own special and unique way. Y ou love music. Who doesn't? But you're also a broke college student who eats uncooked ramen for fun on a Friday night. You still want to support the artists you love, so that they can afford to keep eating ramen noodles in the style to which they've become accustomed and, more importantly, keep making the music you love. How do you do it? You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have to , you buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, and performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of contemporary art? Start by going to First Thursday, which happens on the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before. You've got better things to do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one of its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing. But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Silhouettes lewd, loopy puppetry. Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better. Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, unfuckwithable presence on the field, even though he's confined to the goalkeeper's box. And the guy with the best biography is Osvaldo Alonso, a Cuban defector who walked away from his Cuban team in a Wal-Mart in Texas a couple years ago and never looked back. It's a great fucking team—playing an old, simple, sexy game. For reasons no one's really figured out, the Sounders have higher average attendance at home games than any other team in American major-league soccer. They play at Qwest Field. You can get tickets at www. Wear green. W ell, here you are: We're known for, like, three things: Since you're stuck here until you graduate or burn out and get a job at Orange Julius, you might as well enjoy all the squirrels and splendor and shit. There's plenty to do adventurewise. Also, you can always swim in the lakes. You just walk down there and keep walking until the land ends and you are wet. It is amazing. Grow a beard or armpit hairs. Get a Nalgene bottle. And go to the Olympic Peninsula, where there is even a rain forest. I f you have a desire to spend time outdoors without getting too far away from your TV, laptop, and civilization, there's plenty of woodsy shit to do in-city. Seattle has, like, 19, parks, but Discovery Park in Magnolia is perhaps the best place in Seattle to take a long walk, smoke a joint, and eat a sandwich without being bothered. Green Lake is also a fine place to sit and ogle joggers. You can also rest in a big grassy field and watch or play a pickup basketball game at Green Lake's court, or rent a kayak or pedal boat and float around the lake. There's also a swing set and totally sweet merry-go-round, and sometimes some people do a thing involving dancing and rollerblading simultaneously, and you can watch this, and you will like it. Cal Anderson Park on Capitol Hill is beautiful in the summer—and there's a big concrete water-filled sculpture to splash around in—and Victor Steinbrueck Park, at the north end of the Pike Place Market, has a fantastic view of Puget Sound and is great for people-watching. It's also one of the best places in the city to buy crack and get stabbed by a hobo..

You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people Ure Concupiscent Arent U? capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand.

If people aren't striving to Ure Concupiscent Arent U? truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they?

Sexy stoeipoes Watch Video Powerful Sex. Christopher West is calling couples to a radical change of heart. To go deep into their fears and suppositions about human sexuality and be transformed by the gospel and JPII's deep reflection on same. You don't like the way he presents the material, and from that you spread calumny about him as a person. It's flat wrong, and you should stop it. Jeff, I'm glad you recognize the problem in his description of avoiding near occasions of sin. The Church recognizes that a man and a woman marry in part because they feel a strong physical attraction for one another. Well-formed Catholics know this is possible. Thus, the statement "If you could not be alone together the day before you got married and not sin, there is no magic trick, there is no waving at the wand at the altar, that suddenly makes your sexual behavior beautiful, true, good, lovely, and pure" is simply false. The overwhelming physical attraction that can lead to sex and sin the day before can and will lead to sex and virtue the day after. The marriage vows effect a REAL change in the substance of the man and the woman. West makes fun of them. That's profaning the sacred. Johnnyjoe, I note with interest that Cardinal Rigali's response to Dr. Schindler's pointing out that West is practicing profanation - a sin - is to say "I'm not the only one praising him! BTW, I like that whole "poisoning the well" bit where you say there are so many errors you can't fit them in the combox. You remind me of the Healy combo, the "philosophers" who couldn't even defend themselves, much less each other. They liked to pull the same trick. In fact, your comments are so inane that I strongly suspect you're just one of the Healy's playing at being a man. Go troll somewhere else, fishboy. Steve, I agree with Johnnyjoe. I have gained much from your work especially Designed to Fail , however, I have tracked your coverage of Christopher West and it is really sad and a black mark on your career. Perhaps it is professional jealousy, however, I sense that it is a personal vendetta that you are waging against Christopher West. When was the last time you had a personal conversation with him? Tell us about it. Was it cordial, did you argue with him? Did you find joy and fraternity with someone else who is fighting the good fight? I suspect that you started an argument with him and he said something that stung you and you have yet to forgive. This is the context that makes your actions make sense. Otherwise, the only other explanation is that you are simply a crank, which I don't think is the case. What is apparent is that your attacks on West are personal, unbalanced and interpret West's comments with an acidic eye that ignores the obvious meaning of his words in favor of the most bizarre reading. The fact that "bishops" confide in you that they won't allow West into their diocese is proof of nothing as your own reporting on Rigali's statement gives evidence. The reality is, Rigali has the ecclesial authority over West's apostolate and he has given approbation. Rigali is the competent authority here, not you, and not "some bishops. The point that West is making in the quote is that the interiority of the couple is what is most important, not simply the conformity to rules on dating before marriage. One may conform to the rules of not being alone together , but not have an interior transformation and this can be disastrous for the marriage. Purity, chastity and modesty are interior qualities developed through the grace of God. If you don't have them, marriage will not give them to you by some act of magic. This is his central point by any fair reading. He is NOT saying that the near avoidance of sin is never a virtuous act. He is NOT rejecting the grace of the sacrament of marriage. He is pointing out the necessity of developing an interiority, through God's grace, that does not desire to lust. That is the point. You read him unfairly and your anger blinds you to the wackiness of your claims that he has a cult background that has impaired his work. Steve, I have to level with you. As someone who organizes Catholic speakers to come to a major Archdiocese, I have recommended your work to many people. However, I would be very very reluctant to invite you to come and speak because of your acidic tone, and your crusade against West speaks of there being something not right with you. Have your speaking engagements been growing or contracting Steve? Where is the peace, the charity and joy? Steve, you are a very intelligent man who has studied the truth. However, what good is knowledge of the truth if you have no love? I pray that my comments might open your conscience, rather than empty your spleen. I'd like for you to name the Bishops who you claim would not have him in their diocese. If you KNOW this, reveal it. You haven't held anything else back and you certainly don't have respect for the Princes of the Church, so why not? Steve, where are you going to find a chaperone if the couple meets eachother at college? Honestly, anybody who thinks they need a chaperone should not be dating. They are saying, "I can't control myself. Steve, Columcille said, in so much more of an eloquent way, what I was too tired last night to put into words. His use of the word "vendetta" seemed most appropriate, and this animus is clouding your judgment and jeopardising your own reputation and career. Your attacks on Christopher West, and now extended to Cardinal Rigali, are "argumentum ad personam" - ad hominem abusive - and they rent the Body of Christ and are in error by fact and by innuendo. Get some spiritual direction - get before the Blessed Sacrament and be quiet enough to listen to the Lord - and quit perpetrating this calumny. You just denied that marriage gives anyone grace. That's heresy. You are teaching the condemned heresy Chris West spewed into your head. Like West, you know neither Scripture nor the power of God. As for my naming bishops, if they wanted their names in the public sphere as opposing Chris West, they would say so themselves. Bishops and their staffs are in the business of bringing in popular speakers. You'll be pretty safe in concluding that the dioceses where he hasn't been in the last ten years don't want him in. For the record, Rigali doesn't have the ecclesial authority because West isn't in his diocese. His own bishop in Harrisburg has the ecclesial authority. Rigali wrote the letter because he's the biggest gun on the advisory board. Even if Rigali were the competent authority in terms of canon law, that doesn't mean his judgement in this matter is competent. It's a prudential judgement, there is no exercise of infallibility here. It's essentially just one more "nihil obstat", and we've already seen that Chaput erroneously gave West an N. As with the letter from Rigali, they are primarily marketing tools used by publishers to promote books to gullible Catholics. They can be both given and withheld in error. Every Catholic publisher knows this, none of us talk about it publicly because to do so ruins the marketing effect of the N. Ladies and Gents, I have had private conversations with Christopher West on numerous occasions, both alone and in front of witnesses. In the beginning, I thought he was a fabulous teacher who just mis-spoke occasionally. My understanding changed for the worse after every conversation with him. On one occasion, I had a conversation with Chris outside a church where he spoke, with the people who invited him standing fifty feet away. On that occasion, at which diocesan officials had been present and were horrified by his presentation , I confronted him about the errors in his presentation - just he and I in hearing range. He got so angry that anyone would dare to critique him that he began shoving me. The diocesan officials swore he was never coming back. He has never been back. Every other conversation I've had with West has ended in pretty much the same way. He does NOT take critique well. No matter how gently you try to correct anything he says, if he sees you as a subordinate, he won't listen. Why do you think Dr. I have a personal vendetta against Catholics spewing Protestant heresy. So, in that sense, yes, I have a personal vendetta against Chris West until such times as he stops spewing Protestant heresy. Kevin, You're right - at college you won't find chaperones. Why do you think the college hookup scene is so rife, my friend? Check out this link. Catholic men and women are not benefiting from the new lack of chaperones. Most people never went beyond high school. Indeed, single-sex colleges were the rule. You didn't meet the other sex on campus, certainly not in your dorm, much less your dorm room. Ask any sociologist - the rise of the automobile coincides with the rise of sexual promiscuity because all the social norms were removed. Now, if baptism doesn't abolish concupiscense, thinking nice thoughts won't, but Chris wouldn't accept that. In his early career, nearly every prominent theologian I know of privately corrected him if you can think of the names of three speakers on the circuit, odds are at least one of them tried to correct him. After years of doors closing in his face because of his explicit endorsement of this idea, he no longer teaches this explicitly. Instead, he teaches it by subterfuge, as he does here. As long as he describes the EFFECTS of no longer being affected by concupiscence and doesn't mention the word itself, people like Rigali give him a pass. So, as with the Semi-Arians, he hasn't changed his theology, he's just changed his terminology. Steve, its fine to criticise things that aren't going to change, but I don't see you offering any constructive suggestions. The facts are: We have automobiles. We go to gender-mixed colleges. Chaperones are not available. Expecting young people to date without ever being alone together is a little insane. You sound like one of those people that don't think women should wear pants. Kevin, My constructive suggestion is to return to chaperones. It won't change if people don't change it. It won't change if people make fun of the idea, as Chris West does. Parents have to start building the expectation of chaperones into the children, as the ancients did. Mocking the idea that a near occasion of sin should be avoided simply encourages people into near occasions of sin. West plays both sides of the street - he puts in one throw-away line applauding the idea that near occasions of sin should be avoided, so he has somewhere to run and hide when he needs, but he spends the rest of the talk mocking the idea that near occasions of sin should be avoided. This is Semi-Arian rhetorical technique. Steve, your response to Columcille completely misses the point. How many couples do you know who were not practicing "Purity, chastity and modesty" before marriage, but suddenly began to practice them the instant they were married? That's just not how grace works. If I were to interpret your argument to be saying that people shouldn't try to practice those virtues before marriage, you would get pretty upset, and rightly so. But that would be as bad a mis-characterization of your position as you make of West's. Seeing both sides of a coin isn't always semi-arian rhetoric. Sometimes it's nuance. Sadly, most people can be provoked by words to lash out. It's never justified, but sometimes it is understandable. So spleen it is. Steve, if West shoved you, that's battery. You can call the police and have him arrested, especially if there are witnesses. If he shoves you every time you meet, then it is a pattern and you can get a restraining order. I'm not surprised by your account of what happened between you and Chris. Without knowing anything about this, I could see that something like this had happened simply by tracking your reporting on Christopher. It is obvious from your reporting. How did I know this? Because your reporting reveals an animus that is personal, malicious and unbalanced. Further, I have met you both and I would ask you: Steve, your style is agressive, acidic, sarcastic and you have one tool in your box - to dissect each word a person says and throw it back at them crying "heresy. That's a problem. Whatever constructive critique you may have is lost for failure to love. I doubt your innocence in all this is as you portray because your style is so confrontational and often mean spirited, Steve. Steve, why don't you initiate a canonical suit against West for heresy? Then you will either be vindicated by the proper authorities, or West will be. Either way, you will know, and so will we, and regardless of the outcome everyone will know how much your war against Christopher West is a sign of your character. Either way, you lose. That's my point Steve, you are losing. Even if what you say is true about West's theology, even if it is heresy that he teaches, your crusade violates the principle of Charity in Truth in favor of Maliciousness in Truth. As such, you lose. In my own view, I think you interpret West's work in the worse possible light and attack that in an unbalanced way to wage a personal vendetta against him. The fact that I guessed that you had an altercation with him is some proof that my assessment is on target. If this is true, then you lose even more so because you are posing as the defender of Christian doctrine, while being an unforgiving malicious hypocrite. My point to you Steve which you missed , is that you are hurting yourself and the Church by what you are doing. If you are serious about West preaching heresy, then take a canonical action and be done with it. But again, be warned. Kevin, "How many couples do you know who were not practicing "Purity, chastity and modesty" before marriage, but suddenly began to practice them the instant they were married? Grace works transforms who we are, but it takes awhile for us to catch up with our new capabilities. So, there are two ways to answer your question. First, a one year old has all the power in his legs, all the nerves, all the muscles, all the bone strength necessary to walk unimpeded. But he has to practice how to USE that power. That's why he falls down a lot - he has muscle concupiscence, the tendency to WANT to fall down, even though he has the power to stand. Similarly, the grace of marriage instantly provides all the power to live out all the virtues but it takes a while to learn how to use that new power. And this is part of the second point. If I am unmarried and have not the graces of marriage, then I will live out purity, chastity and modesty differently than when I am married. Precisely because the unmarried man has less power, less grace, he CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Indeed, what is impure the night before the wedding becomes pure the night after the wedding. What is immodest the night before becomes modest. What is unchaste becomes chaste. West takes none of these things into account. He mocks them for recognizing their weaknesses, chastises them for exercising chastity, claims their attempts at purity are really a sign of their underlying impurity. Like snow-covered dunghills, the unmarried lovers who choose to remain apart LOOK pure on the outside, says West, but on the inside they are really filled with charnel and dust! He's telling all of these young men and women that not only should, they be able to remain alone in a bedroom prior to marriage, but that anyone who advises them against doing so is the real sinner. This turns years of spiritual and moral counsel from the Church on its head. This man is denying the sacraments of the Church. He's denying the fallen nature of man. He's essentially an Adamite. He has, on numerous occasions, advocated various kinds of public nudity on at least a theoretical level and sometimes a practical level as being consistent with Catholic theology. Indeed, I know of at least one television show in which he discussed with Catholic theologians this very point. The show never aired because it was deemed too scandalous. They actually reported his views with complete accuracy. I was actually shocked by how accurate they were. I didn't expect it from a secular news media source. As you both admit, you know nothing of the situation. And if I am reading him unfairly, then what do you say of his instructors? At least three different instructors at the place where he was taught TOB have all repudiated him. You can ad hominem me, and fail to engage any of the theological points I've brought out, but how do you plan on doing the same to the faculty that taught him? Oh, I also find it interesting, Columcille, that you and Johnnyjoe same person perhaps don't have any personal links. Anonymous assaults - very touching. Columcille, You suggest I take out a canonical lawsuit against West. Perhaps I should. Perhaps I shall. Columcille, in turn, I suggest that if you are going to cast aspersions on my character, you tell us all exactly who you are, give us your real name and your real connection to Chris West. Let's get out from behind the mask, shall we? Steve, I think one of the central problems here is that you are equivocating between prudence and chastity. It is the distinction between the two that West is trying to point out. Avoiding the near occassion of sin is not the same thing as having the virtue against which the temptation to sin tends. Having the prudence to avoid the near occassions of sins against chastity, for instance, is not the same thing as being chaste. West is arguing that avoiding the near occasion of sin is only a stop-gap measure to protect us while we work to cooperate with grace to the point that we are truly chaste. Once we are chaste, it is no longer necessary. There's always the possibility of sin, but if that alone meant we must avoid the situation, we could never leave the house! Furthermore, it goes too far to say that an unmarried man "CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Even after baptism? Tell me, would it be possible for young saints Francis and Clare to be alone together and remain chaste? Inquiring minds want to know. Kevin, You are setting the virtues in opposition to one another. That's not how it works. It is not the case that once I am chaste, I no longer need to be prudent. The virtues are not something we capture, like a bird in a cage. They are constantly lived out, we work out our salvation in fear and trembling, they are constantly in danger of being lost. The virtues are habits of action. Like any muscle, the virtue requires constant exercise and require constant vigilance to exercise them. So part of the virtue of chastity is prudence. Part of the virtue of prudence is chastity. It is virtually impossible to exercise one virtue to the exclusion of the others. Like the Persons of the Trinity, virtues can be distinguished, but they can never be separated. So, the exercise of virtue is not an either-or situation. But, insofar as you have followed Chris West, you have gained the erroneous idea that it is, haven't you? Are you beginning to see the problem? I've just noted two things you reveal in this conversation seem to go together nicely: You're a belligerent jerk to everyone who disagrees with you, and you once provoked a guy you manifestly hate to shove you. I'm certainly not going to defer to their opinions because they happen to be professors. I've known too many professors. And if they want to convince me of anything, the first they have to do is characterize their interpretation of West's views in a way that isn't wildly at odds with what the guy actually says. You might try that as well. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. This freedom is a real, living possibility if we are willing to undergo deep and painful purifications. If you have a prediliction to shoplift bubblegum, it would be prudent for you to avoid the bubblegum aisle of the store. If you overcome that compulsion to the degree that you are confident it is not a likely possibility, going to great lengths to avoid the bubblegum aisle become pointless. It's no longer prudence. Prudence hasn't changed. You have. If you are unchaste, by definition you are imprudent. You can't hold a prudent thought in your head while being unchaste with your body. You may have been unchaste with your body IN THE PAST, still haven't confessed the sin, but through the work of actual graces you have returned to some semblance of sanity and are NOW trying to be both prudent and chaste. You continue to hold virtues in opposition to one another, because that's what Chris West has taught you to do. The very idea is absurd. Heresy works best when it is liberally admixed with orthodoxy. It's much harder to detect the heresy that way. That's why the man frightens me. He's good enough to be really, really dangerous. Kevin, You're right, it's clear what you meant. That's the problem. You have an either-or understanding of virtues. Take your bubble-gum example. The ability to ignore the bubble-gum means that you have increased your abilities in the virtue of prudence and restraint. It doesn't mean you don't need those virtues, it means you are growing in their power. He CAN'T grow in virtue by repeatedly and deliberately putting himself in a situation that's really only proper to a married person. Find me a saint of the Church who says you need to pursue near occasions of sin, or even not to worry about them, in order to grow in grace, and I'll agree with you. Oh, Kevin, funny you should bring up Francis and Clare. First, to answer your question, they were both under religious vows, which gave them graces to maintain their virtues. But, I heard Christopher West specifically call out St. Francis as an example NOT to follow because he threw himself into a rose bush in order to quiet his concupiscence. West claimed that this was a "disordered understanding of the theology of the body. So I'm very glad that you brought those two into the conversation. This all boils down to asking WHY is it prudent to avoid certain situations. It is prudent because of the likelihood that you will give in to temptation and sin. It isn't the mere possibility of sin that makes avoidance prudent, but the degree of likelihood. The possibility exists always and everywhere. Obviously some judgment is involved, and there is a grey area where it is unclear if the likelihood of sinning is large enough to warrant avoiding the situation. A big part of assessing the likelihood of sin is to take stock of your character. We never achieve perfection in this life, but we move towards perfection as we conform ourselves to Christ. That said, it seems perfectly obvious that as our hearts are more conformed to Christ, it becomes less and less likely that being a single person alone with a person of the opposite sex would lead to sin. At a certain point, it is no longer required by prudence to avoid the situation. And of course, some people have a longer journey to get to that point than others, depending on many things such as their personality and their history. You say that being alone with the person you are courting is "a situation that's really only proper to a married person. If it is improper, it is because the couple should avoid the near occasion of sin. That's the only reason that's been offered in this conversation, anyway. If it is the near occasion of sin, that is because it is a situation in which it is likely that the couple will actually sin meaning a sin distinct from the alleged sin of being alone together. And that all hangs, of course, on how likely it is, in reality, that they will sin. As with any case, the couple themselves are called to make a judgment about that likelihood. Note that this is not "pursuing near occasions of sin", it is evaluating whether one exists. So I repeat, you are begging the question. If I wanted to pursue a near occasion of sin, I would first have to determine that one existed, and then pursue it. Finally, you may judge, in your best estimation, that any unmarried couple being alone together is pretty much always a near occasion of sin. Fine, I happen to disagree. But I don't think that there is any point in this conversation where an honest reading of what I've written can support the accusations of heresy that you have been making. Your interpretation of me as "hold[ing] virtues in opposition to one another" and promoting pursuing occasions of sin is just not supported. You're too quick to attack without understanding what the person means. That anonymous post and this one is by "Kevin". The log-in seems to be malfunctioning right now. I am amazed that people claim an error in the principle of Charity in Truth for pointing out comments that are clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. It would be one thing if it was an educational moment for someone who doesn't understand what they are saying because they don't have the background, but if West really didn't understand what his words were implying, he needs a job outside of any educational activities. This is the theological arena where wording means everything. Patrick, obviously your amazement is caused by your belief that West was "clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. I for one am unacquainted with the TOB and with both Steve's and West's approach to it, but I can't help finding really strange that West's cheerleaders here have to resort to mob-lynching against Steve offering no rational argument for it, as if Christopher West were a kind of "Ferris Bueller" of Catholic celebrities everyone is supposed to like and agree with. Obviously, it is not a sin to simply be together in the same room alone. However, all the tinder necessary for sin is present. Now, Kevin, I agree that you have made yourself much more clear in your last post. But you must agree that your first few stabs at it were not clear - I can't read minds, all I can do is go by what is printed on the page. Chris West has been giving talks for a long, long time. He hasn't gotten any clearer in his presentations over that time. His wording, his failure to appreciate or provide nuance, this is what is killing him. Nestorius didn't MEAN to be a heretic. He thought he was right - indeed, both he and Arius caused the emperor to call the councils which deposed and condemned both of them. Good intent is not enough. Their WORDS are burned when their works are burned , even when the heretics are not which was most of the time - they usually just got banished. His intent is beside the point. My comments are mere croaking in comparison. You have been warned, and you continue your obstinance at the peril of your own soul. I'm sure the next step is to start bitching about those "Novus Ordo" katholics. I don't have a "URL" because I don't have a website. Are my criticisms less credible because I don't have a website? As it were, it is a sad thing, really. As Columcille observed, even if you are "right", you lose - I just pray it isn't your soul. I have challenged you on this point in every post of mine, and in every response you have avoided it. You are twisting West's words to fit your plan, and now you are so deep into this project, to turn back appears nearly impossible. You have drunk deeply from the bitter cup of self-righteousness, and the devil thus has you by the short hairs. It is a broad and easy road to declare yourself a greater authority than the Church leadership. You hold much more in common with Luther than with Aquinas, and as long as you resist any humble self assessment about your motivations, you will continue down a destructive path. Since you take not fraternal correction but only redouble your efforts at the challenge , I will offer my Peace to you. This vendetta will end as all vendettas end - in the death of a soul. May God take the time to get your attention before you cause any further rents in the Body of Christ. Johnnyjoe, Have you considered the possibility that the "fruit" here originates with Christopher West? This drama is centered around West, not me. I don't have Alice von Hildebrand breathing down my neck. I haven't been publicly repudiated for bad theology by the people who gave me my MA in theology. It ain't me that's brought out these fruits - these are the fruits of Christopher West's teachings. Buy a clue. Steve, On the contrary, intent is nearly everything. Words just do not have one specific meaning. For one thing, there aren't nearly enough of them for that kind of rigor. Nevertheless we can hope to communicate clearly if both parties do their job. That means the listener needs to be asking "how can I understand the speaker in a way that makes sense? Chris West does not aim his presentation at theologians. He is communicating to common people that have a lot of misconceptions about very basic ideas about chastity. One of the things he is always trying to drive home is that we should be trying and striving to become truly chaste in our minds and hearts, which involves having a positive outlook on sexuality. You can't just say this once and expect it to stick. You've got to say it a thousand times in a thousand ways before people start to really get it. When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who hears him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things. Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you must avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin. None of the heretical readings you have offered are warranted. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar idea, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage. You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people are capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand. If people aren't striving to be truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they? Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with better ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and striving for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations. Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that he believes that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state. Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since St. Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, but not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would not remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that. As for the Westian canon of four-fold action, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. West's message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot West. Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide behind, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them. I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow is dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective than any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. After following this, I must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to temptation in courtship. To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this fictional "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints. To flee such situations is the only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is to promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack. It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that can be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula. I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is the first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur. As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in his Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is to realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom. INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that. The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, although there may be slight differences between those two ideas. I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves or to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the determination of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help of a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances. I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone? Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin the SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two? Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin? I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when no sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be an occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something?? Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how absurd this is if you compare it to other situations. For some, being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day? For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other side of the aisle"? For some people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat. If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to develop the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the expectation of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable. But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical proximity raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of sin through their awareness of the danger and their moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or situation. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue. Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind. Is it easier to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to avoid the near occasion of sin. I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he wants to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater heights of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary. The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with someone we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous. Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, but if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim that West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone. Your abrasive and hostile language in this entire discussion kind of disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his prison room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, slammed the door on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation. According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you? What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's. These people set you up to argue with me and are now leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how to play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin. It is. We have a different word for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be morally neutral, and it clearly is not. I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Now, am I putting word into West's mouth? No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. Any previously acquired cock-sucking skills can still come in handy when working with silicone. And don't neglect your classic oral-sex techniques. Three 6 Mafia and the rest of us would rather get some head, and you have the advantage on giving a lady what she really wants. Y ou're going to need some lube. Get a water-based lube because it's condom-safe and it won't take a thousand years to wash off. You can graduate to oil-based lubes when you and what's-his-name move in together, commit to a monogamous relationship, decide to give up condoms since you're only doing each other, and take up marathon fucking. To suck dick successfully, hold it at the base with one hand, put your mouth over what's remaining, and move your hand and mouth up and down together. If you're going to rim someone: Ask first about his STD and hepatitis status, make sure he's showered and his butt is sparkly clean, then spread his butt cheeks and go for it. Always ask, "What's your HIV status? Don't put a perfect stranger's dick in your mouth, or any dick with sores on it, and don't eat a perfect stranger's butt. Parks, bathhouses, and campus bathrooms are not the answer: Old men covered in diseases go there looking for young guys who don't know any better. If you're not old enough to get into Pony, try online— Adam4Adam. Always meet for coffee first many guys on the internet have attractive photos but turn out be obese aliens , and don't do anything that doesn't feel right. M aybe you feel like you were born in the wrong body, maybe you love your body but everyone else seems confused about it, maybe you've had surgery or are on hormones, maybe you bind or tuck or accessorize to feel comfortable with or define your gender. Or maybe you just want to fuck someone who does. But before you hit the sack or stacks, see below , have at least one actual conversation about sex with your date. Cover basics like what's encouraged and what's off-limits and how you define safe sex. And don't forget that good sex is had with whole bodies, not just the predictable parts. Ideally, we all have lips and fingers and necks and backs and butts and collarbones and nipples. Regardless of gender, the protocol remains the same: Listen—to your own body as well as the one s you are entwined with. Communicate—with sounds or words if the meaning of your noises is unclear never hesitate to ask for what you want. Above all, enjoy—learn how to become lost in your own pleasure as well as someone else's if you are already a pro at the former, practice the latter, and vice versa. And remember—practice makes perfect. Y our soundtrack for amour is important. Don't blow it by playing Christian rock or ska. Certain musical styles have been proven—through rigorous experiments in the field—to set optimal moods and attitudes geared for enhancing sexual performance in Homo sapiens. Hell, just perusing Ohio Players' LP covers should get you hornier than a submarine full of seamen. If manic rhythms with extreme frequencies stimulate you to ecstatic heights, check out the roster of DFA Records; two lengthy comps of the NYC label's output exist for your delectation, ready to score your scores till the break of dawn—or dusk. Last but not least, metronomic, lush techno and deep house music will also put some robust buck in your bang. E very college worth its salt has one—a library where men gather in the appropriately named men's room to revel in their manliness and perhaps leave spooge stains on the floor. But how does one find such men's rooms? Ask the librarian? Follow the scent of CK One and self-loathing? Simply follow the clues below. Seattle University: Rumor has it that the facilities located on the library's third and fourth floors are sex central. Sexy shame-based bonus: God—the ultimate dean of the Jesuit SU—is watching! And He doesn't like what he sees! University of Washington: Seattle Central Community College: There are no rumors about this place. But according to Seattle gay historian Adrian Ryan, "the culinary department's men's potty resembles the last days of the Roman Empire! Cornish College of the Arts: This library is extremely small. Proceed with caution, unless you are an extremely small person, in which case revel in open dirtiness wherever! S ometimes things happen, like babies. Sometimes, because of life, these babies need to be ended before they begin. Lucky for you, life-living lady, you live in a big, liberal city with big, liberal baby-ending options. This is probably going to be hard, but that does not mean it is the wrong thing to do or the right thing to do. For the record, just because sometimes someone regrets something does not mean that the thing should be illegal—were that the case, we would like to press criminal charges against the Great Knit Poncho Explosion of Tell whoever impregnated you to pony up some cash. An abortion can be paid for in installments. An abortion can be a pill better or it can be an operation worse. You do not have to tell your parents about your abortion thank you, Washington State! You will be okay. Here are your abortion service options in and around Seattle, listed by location. Aurora Medical Services, Broadway, Ste , , www. Wy, , www. Lacey near Olympia: I n general, it is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove yourself one. But if you must speak on an arty subject, just be honest—don't name-drop, don't make up shit about light and perspective and Freudian symbolism and postmodern theory unless you've read—and written essays about—the books. Say what you think and don't try to impress anybody , especially yourself. The great news is this: While good art is a marvelous thing to behold and even bad art can be instructive, arty events tend to attract plenty of loud-mouthed morons who will do the embarrassing talking for you. D o not use the word "foodie," and give up on finding a good substitute: There isn't one. You are merely a person who has a modicum of knowledge about, and enjoys a variety of, different foods. This is very fashionable right now, and for good reason: It's healthier than a fast- and processed-food diet, and being willing to put almost anything in your mouth is hot. Read up on the foods of different cultures Wikipedia is a fine start , and read food writing local papers, magazines, M. Try all kinds of food on the Ave; look for places that are full and that have high ratings online. Try good, inexpensive restaurants elsewhere: Go eat oysters at the awesome happy hour at Elliott's on the waterfront Alaskan Way, Pier 56, ; it's open to all ages. Find other all-ages happy hours; it's a cheap way to eat at great places. Be ready with a wish list when someone else is paying or when you have some cash. When you're broke, journey to Uwajimaya, browse and marvel! Go to the farmers market, browse, talk to people. Learn to cook. In general, with food—as with all things—do not bloviate. Rather, share your secrets. Be excited. Bring a date. They will love you. T he basic rule of how to behave at a music show is kind of the same rule that governs how to behave everywhere in life you may want to clip this one out of the paper and tack it onto your wall: Be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you, and don't be a jerk. It's that easy! Are other people moshing? Then maybe it's not a good show to be moshing at—maybe you're at a disco and you didn't notice. Are other people dancing? Maybe you would like to dance also! Is the show so crowded that you can't really move without stepping on toes and bumping into hapless spectators? Maybe you should watch it with the elbows then, buddy. Of course, this is not an ironclad rule. You are a special, unique individual—possibly more special and unique than anyone who has ever been to a rock concert! Don't be afraid to be the only person dancing or the first person jumping around and—without malice—bumping into your neighbors every show needs one first brave soul to get things moving. Just be aware that some people may not want to dance or have you moshing into them, and it would be awfully nice of you to let them enjoy the show in their own special and unique way. Y ou love music. Who doesn't? But you're also a broke college student who eats uncooked ramen for fun on a Friday night. You still want to support the artists you love, so that they can afford to keep eating ramen noodles in the style to which they've become accustomed and, more importantly, keep making the music you love. How do you do it? You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have to , you buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, and performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of contemporary art? Start by going to First Thursday, which happens on the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before. You've got better things to do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one of its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing. But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Silhouettes lewd, loopy puppetry. Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better. Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, unfuckwithable presence on the field, even though he's confined to the goalkeeper's box. And the guy with the best biography is Osvaldo Alonso, a Cuban defector who walked away from his Cuban team in a Wal-Mart in Texas a couple years ago and never looked back. It's a great fucking team—playing an old, simple, sexy game. For reasons no one's really figured out, the Sounders have higher average attendance at home games than any other team in American major-league soccer. They play at Qwest Field. You can get tickets at www. Wear green. W ell, here you are: We're known for, like, three things: Since you're stuck here until you graduate or burn out and get a job at Orange Julius, you might as well enjoy all the squirrels and splendor and shit. There's plenty to do adventurewise. Also, you can always swim in the lakes. You just walk down there and keep walking until the land ends and you are wet. It is amazing. Grow a beard or armpit hairs. Get a Nalgene bottle. And go to the Olympic Peninsula, where there is even a rain forest. I f you have a desire to spend time outdoors without getting too far away from your TV, laptop, and civilization, there's plenty of woodsy shit to do in-city. Seattle has, like, 19, parks, but Discovery Park in Magnolia is perhaps the best place in Seattle to take a long walk, smoke a joint, and eat a sandwich without being bothered. Green Lake is also a fine place to sit and ogle joggers. You can also rest in a big grassy field and watch or play a pickup basketball game at Green Lake's court, or rent a kayak or pedal boat and float around the lake. There's also a swing set and totally sweet merry-go-round, and sometimes some people do a thing involving dancing and rollerblading simultaneously, and you can watch this, and you will like it. Cal Anderson Park on Capitol Hill is beautiful in the summer—and there's a big concrete water-filled sculpture to splash around in—and Victor Steinbrueck Park, at the north end of the Pike Place Market, has a fantastic view of Puget Sound and is great for people-watching. It's also one of the best places in the city to buy crack and get stabbed by a hobo. If you have something against parks ass-hole! And here's another idea: For basically the price of a movie ticket, you can ride the ferry to Bainbridge Island and back. Just pay your fare, walk on, and there will be wind and water and such. Y ou may be asked to wear a pink hat! You are going to look so stupid! Just do it, because your life is about to get much, much, much better. The Land of Pink Hats and mandatorially naked ladies; the hats are required for hygiene reasons, ostensibly, but more likely the owners just want to have a laugh is Olympus Spa, with two locations: Tacoma and Lynnwood. These are Korean spas, which means they have everything a regular spa has hot tubs, cold plunges, steam saunas, dry saunas, massages , but they also have something called a body scrub. In a body scrub, a Korean lady scrubs your skin off. It is pretty great. At Banya 5, which is located more conveniently in South Lake Union, both men and women are allowed on coed days you wear a bathing suit , there are no pink hats, and the tradition is Russian. This means that in addition to the regular stuff see above , you can hire a person to smack you with giant leaves, according to custom. If you can, try not to think about being naked because it will make you less afraid of being naked. But I have this pink hat! W e are not Europe, yet. Soon we will be, but until then, drinking in public is illegal. What to do about this problem?.

Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with Ure Concupiscent Arent U? ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and Ure Concupiscent Arent U? for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations.

Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that read more Ure Concupiscent Arent U? that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state.

Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since Ure Concupiscent Arent U?.

Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would learn more here remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that.

As for the Westian canon of four-fold Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. Ure Concupiscent Arent U? message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot Ure Concupiscent Arent U?.

Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them.

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I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective Ure Concupiscent Arent U? any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. Ure Concupiscent Arent U? following this, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to Fucking mature cheating wife with cucumber in courtship.

To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this Ure Concupiscent Arent U? "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints.

To flee such situations is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is Aquarius Man Virgo Woman Sexually promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack.

It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that click be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula.

I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur.

As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in Ure Concupiscent Arent U? Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God.

It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom.

INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that.

The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, click here there may be slight differences between those two ideas.

I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the see more of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help Ure Concupiscent Arent U? a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances.

I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone?

Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin Ure Concupiscent Arent U? SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two?

Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin?

I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when Ure Concupiscent Arent U? sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be Ure Concupiscent Arent U? occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something??

Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

this is if you compare it to other situations. For "Ure Concupiscent Arent U?," being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day?

For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other Ure Concupiscent Arent U? of the aisle"? For Ure Concupiscent Arent U? people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat.

If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the Ure Concupiscent Arent U? of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable.

But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of Ure Concupiscent Arent U? through their awareness of the danger and Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or Ure Concupiscent Arent U?. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue.

Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind.

Is it Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the near occasion of sin.

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I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater read article of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary.

The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with Ure Concupiscent Arent U? we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous.

Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim Ure Concupiscent Arent U? West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone.

Your abrasive and hostile language Ure Concupiscent Arent U? this entire discussion kind Ure Concupiscent Arent U? disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the Ure Concupiscent Arent U? on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation.

According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you?

What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's.

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These people set you up to argue with me and are Ure Concupiscent Arent U? leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how Ure Concupiscent Arent U? play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin.

It is. We have a different Ure Concupiscent Arent U? for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be please click for source neutral, and it clearly is not.

I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, am I putting word into West's mouth?

No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. He's making another point entirely. I realize this may be see more, but Ure Concupiscent Arent U? somebody is speaking english and their language takes the form "a is b", they don't necessarily mean it to be taken in the absolute sense, the way a logician means it.

Language is a complex and subtle thing. The important thing is whether his meaning is being successfully conveyed to his listeners. I continue to believe that if you surveyed people coming out of his talks, asking them "Does Chris West teach that there is nothing at all virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin?

If those two people disagree on some matter of truth, either one may be right, but if they disagree on what West's message is, it Ure Concupiscent Arent U? reasonable to give the benefit of the doubt to the supporter. I get the feeling that if Chris West himself were to come here and try to explain what he meant, you'd still tell him he meant Ure Concupiscent Arent U? else. One last thing. I am obviously a fellow who likes a good debate. Accusing them Ure Concupiscent Arent U? "cult tactics" because they give up Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

to argue with you is, wow, pretty paranoid and demented, now that I think about it. I don't think continuing this discussion is good for you, and I think I will do the right thing and end it. Brendan is correct - deliberately entering an occasion for Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

is a sin.

Xxrx Xvideos Watch Video Sexey stockings. Bishops and their staffs are in the business of bringing in popular speakers. You'll be pretty safe in concluding that the dioceses where he hasn't been in the last ten years don't want him in. For the record, Rigali doesn't have the ecclesial authority because West isn't in his diocese. His own bishop in Harrisburg has the ecclesial authority. Rigali wrote the letter because he's the biggest gun on the advisory board. Even if Rigali were the competent authority in terms of canon law, that doesn't mean his judgement in this matter is competent. It's a prudential judgement, there is no exercise of infallibility here. It's essentially just one more "nihil obstat", and we've already seen that Chaput erroneously gave West an N. As with the letter from Rigali, they are primarily marketing tools used by publishers to promote books to gullible Catholics. They can be both given and withheld in error. Every Catholic publisher knows this, none of us talk about it publicly because to do so ruins the marketing effect of the N. Ladies and Gents, I have had private conversations with Christopher West on numerous occasions, both alone and in front of witnesses. In the beginning, I thought he was a fabulous teacher who just mis-spoke occasionally. My understanding changed for the worse after every conversation with him. On one occasion, I had a conversation with Chris outside a church where he spoke, with the people who invited him standing fifty feet away. On that occasion, at which diocesan officials had been present and were horrified by his presentation , I confronted him about the errors in his presentation - just he and I in hearing range. He got so angry that anyone would dare to critique him that he began shoving me. The diocesan officials swore he was never coming back. He has never been back. Every other conversation I've had with West has ended in pretty much the same way. He does NOT take critique well. No matter how gently you try to correct anything he says, if he sees you as a subordinate, he won't listen. Why do you think Dr. I have a personal vendetta against Catholics spewing Protestant heresy. So, in that sense, yes, I have a personal vendetta against Chris West until such times as he stops spewing Protestant heresy. Kevin, You're right - at college you won't find chaperones. Why do you think the college hookup scene is so rife, my friend? Check out this link. Catholic men and women are not benefiting from the new lack of chaperones. Most people never went beyond high school. Indeed, single-sex colleges were the rule. You didn't meet the other sex on campus, certainly not in your dorm, much less your dorm room. Ask any sociologist - the rise of the automobile coincides with the rise of sexual promiscuity because all the social norms were removed. Now, if baptism doesn't abolish concupiscense, thinking nice thoughts won't, but Chris wouldn't accept that. In his early career, nearly every prominent theologian I know of privately corrected him if you can think of the names of three speakers on the circuit, odds are at least one of them tried to correct him. After years of doors closing in his face because of his explicit endorsement of this idea, he no longer teaches this explicitly. Instead, he teaches it by subterfuge, as he does here. As long as he describes the EFFECTS of no longer being affected by concupiscence and doesn't mention the word itself, people like Rigali give him a pass. So, as with the Semi-Arians, he hasn't changed his theology, he's just changed his terminology. Steve, its fine to criticise things that aren't going to change, but I don't see you offering any constructive suggestions. The facts are: We have automobiles. We go to gender-mixed colleges. Chaperones are not available. Expecting young people to date without ever being alone together is a little insane. You sound like one of those people that don't think women should wear pants. Kevin, My constructive suggestion is to return to chaperones. It won't change if people don't change it. It won't change if people make fun of the idea, as Chris West does. Parents have to start building the expectation of chaperones into the children, as the ancients did. Mocking the idea that a near occasion of sin should be avoided simply encourages people into near occasions of sin. West plays both sides of the street - he puts in one throw-away line applauding the idea that near occasions of sin should be avoided, so he has somewhere to run and hide when he needs, but he spends the rest of the talk mocking the idea that near occasions of sin should be avoided. This is Semi-Arian rhetorical technique. Steve, your response to Columcille completely misses the point. How many couples do you know who were not practicing "Purity, chastity and modesty" before marriage, but suddenly began to practice them the instant they were married? That's just not how grace works. If I were to interpret your argument to be saying that people shouldn't try to practice those virtues before marriage, you would get pretty upset, and rightly so. But that would be as bad a mis-characterization of your position as you make of West's. Seeing both sides of a coin isn't always semi-arian rhetoric. Sometimes it's nuance. Sadly, most people can be provoked by words to lash out. It's never justified, but sometimes it is understandable. So spleen it is. Steve, if West shoved you, that's battery. You can call the police and have him arrested, especially if there are witnesses. If he shoves you every time you meet, then it is a pattern and you can get a restraining order. I'm not surprised by your account of what happened between you and Chris. Without knowing anything about this, I could see that something like this had happened simply by tracking your reporting on Christopher. It is obvious from your reporting. How did I know this? Because your reporting reveals an animus that is personal, malicious and unbalanced. Further, I have met you both and I would ask you: Steve, your style is agressive, acidic, sarcastic and you have one tool in your box - to dissect each word a person says and throw it back at them crying "heresy. That's a problem. Whatever constructive critique you may have is lost for failure to love. I doubt your innocence in all this is as you portray because your style is so confrontational and often mean spirited, Steve. Steve, why don't you initiate a canonical suit against West for heresy? Then you will either be vindicated by the proper authorities, or West will be. Either way, you will know, and so will we, and regardless of the outcome everyone will know how much your war against Christopher West is a sign of your character. Either way, you lose. That's my point Steve, you are losing. Even if what you say is true about West's theology, even if it is heresy that he teaches, your crusade violates the principle of Charity in Truth in favor of Maliciousness in Truth. As such, you lose. In my own view, I think you interpret West's work in the worse possible light and attack that in an unbalanced way to wage a personal vendetta against him. The fact that I guessed that you had an altercation with him is some proof that my assessment is on target. If this is true, then you lose even more so because you are posing as the defender of Christian doctrine, while being an unforgiving malicious hypocrite. My point to you Steve which you missed , is that you are hurting yourself and the Church by what you are doing. If you are serious about West preaching heresy, then take a canonical action and be done with it. But again, be warned. Kevin, "How many couples do you know who were not practicing "Purity, chastity and modesty" before marriage, but suddenly began to practice them the instant they were married? Grace works transforms who we are, but it takes awhile for us to catch up with our new capabilities. So, there are two ways to answer your question. First, a one year old has all the power in his legs, all the nerves, all the muscles, all the bone strength necessary to walk unimpeded. But he has to practice how to USE that power. That's why he falls down a lot - he has muscle concupiscence, the tendency to WANT to fall down, even though he has the power to stand. Similarly, the grace of marriage instantly provides all the power to live out all the virtues but it takes a while to learn how to use that new power. And this is part of the second point. If I am unmarried and have not the graces of marriage, then I will live out purity, chastity and modesty differently than when I am married. Precisely because the unmarried man has less power, less grace, he CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Indeed, what is impure the night before the wedding becomes pure the night after the wedding. What is immodest the night before becomes modest. What is unchaste becomes chaste. West takes none of these things into account. He mocks them for recognizing their weaknesses, chastises them for exercising chastity, claims their attempts at purity are really a sign of their underlying impurity. Like snow-covered dunghills, the unmarried lovers who choose to remain apart LOOK pure on the outside, says West, but on the inside they are really filled with charnel and dust! He's telling all of these young men and women that not only should, they be able to remain alone in a bedroom prior to marriage, but that anyone who advises them against doing so is the real sinner. This turns years of spiritual and moral counsel from the Church on its head. This man is denying the sacraments of the Church. He's denying the fallen nature of man. He's essentially an Adamite. He has, on numerous occasions, advocated various kinds of public nudity on at least a theoretical level and sometimes a practical level as being consistent with Catholic theology. Indeed, I know of at least one television show in which he discussed with Catholic theologians this very point. The show never aired because it was deemed too scandalous. They actually reported his views with complete accuracy. I was actually shocked by how accurate they were. I didn't expect it from a secular news media source. As you both admit, you know nothing of the situation. And if I am reading him unfairly, then what do you say of his instructors? At least three different instructors at the place where he was taught TOB have all repudiated him. You can ad hominem me, and fail to engage any of the theological points I've brought out, but how do you plan on doing the same to the faculty that taught him? Oh, I also find it interesting, Columcille, that you and Johnnyjoe same person perhaps don't have any personal links. Anonymous assaults - very touching. Columcille, You suggest I take out a canonical lawsuit against West. Perhaps I should. Perhaps I shall. Columcille, in turn, I suggest that if you are going to cast aspersions on my character, you tell us all exactly who you are, give us your real name and your real connection to Chris West. Let's get out from behind the mask, shall we? Steve, I think one of the central problems here is that you are equivocating between prudence and chastity. It is the distinction between the two that West is trying to point out. Avoiding the near occassion of sin is not the same thing as having the virtue against which the temptation to sin tends. Having the prudence to avoid the near occassions of sins against chastity, for instance, is not the same thing as being chaste. West is arguing that avoiding the near occasion of sin is only a stop-gap measure to protect us while we work to cooperate with grace to the point that we are truly chaste. Once we are chaste, it is no longer necessary. There's always the possibility of sin, but if that alone meant we must avoid the situation, we could never leave the house! Furthermore, it goes too far to say that an unmarried man "CAN'T expect to be pure, modest and chaste in a room alone with his beloved in the same way that he will be able to when he IS married to her. Even after baptism? Tell me, would it be possible for young saints Francis and Clare to be alone together and remain chaste? Inquiring minds want to know. Kevin, You are setting the virtues in opposition to one another. That's not how it works. It is not the case that once I am chaste, I no longer need to be prudent. The virtues are not something we capture, like a bird in a cage. They are constantly lived out, we work out our salvation in fear and trembling, they are constantly in danger of being lost. The virtues are habits of action. Like any muscle, the virtue requires constant exercise and require constant vigilance to exercise them. So part of the virtue of chastity is prudence. Part of the virtue of prudence is chastity. It is virtually impossible to exercise one virtue to the exclusion of the others. Like the Persons of the Trinity, virtues can be distinguished, but they can never be separated. So, the exercise of virtue is not an either-or situation. But, insofar as you have followed Chris West, you have gained the erroneous idea that it is, haven't you? Are you beginning to see the problem? I've just noted two things you reveal in this conversation seem to go together nicely: You're a belligerent jerk to everyone who disagrees with you, and you once provoked a guy you manifestly hate to shove you. I'm certainly not going to defer to their opinions because they happen to be professors. I've known too many professors. And if they want to convince me of anything, the first they have to do is characterize their interpretation of West's views in a way that isn't wildly at odds with what the guy actually says. You might try that as well. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. This freedom is a real, living possibility if we are willing to undergo deep and painful purifications. If you have a prediliction to shoplift bubblegum, it would be prudent for you to avoid the bubblegum aisle of the store. If you overcome that compulsion to the degree that you are confident it is not a likely possibility, going to great lengths to avoid the bubblegum aisle become pointless. It's no longer prudence. Prudence hasn't changed. You have. If you are unchaste, by definition you are imprudent. You can't hold a prudent thought in your head while being unchaste with your body. You may have been unchaste with your body IN THE PAST, still haven't confessed the sin, but through the work of actual graces you have returned to some semblance of sanity and are NOW trying to be both prudent and chaste. You continue to hold virtues in opposition to one another, because that's what Chris West has taught you to do. The very idea is absurd. Heresy works best when it is liberally admixed with orthodoxy. It's much harder to detect the heresy that way. That's why the man frightens me. He's good enough to be really, really dangerous. Kevin, You're right, it's clear what you meant. That's the problem. You have an either-or understanding of virtues. Take your bubble-gum example. The ability to ignore the bubble-gum means that you have increased your abilities in the virtue of prudence and restraint. It doesn't mean you don't need those virtues, it means you are growing in their power. He CAN'T grow in virtue by repeatedly and deliberately putting himself in a situation that's really only proper to a married person. Find me a saint of the Church who says you need to pursue near occasions of sin, or even not to worry about them, in order to grow in grace, and I'll agree with you. Oh, Kevin, funny you should bring up Francis and Clare. First, to answer your question, they were both under religious vows, which gave them graces to maintain their virtues. But, I heard Christopher West specifically call out St. Francis as an example NOT to follow because he threw himself into a rose bush in order to quiet his concupiscence. West claimed that this was a "disordered understanding of the theology of the body. So I'm very glad that you brought those two into the conversation. This all boils down to asking WHY is it prudent to avoid certain situations. It is prudent because of the likelihood that you will give in to temptation and sin. It isn't the mere possibility of sin that makes avoidance prudent, but the degree of likelihood. The possibility exists always and everywhere. Obviously some judgment is involved, and there is a grey area where it is unclear if the likelihood of sinning is large enough to warrant avoiding the situation. A big part of assessing the likelihood of sin is to take stock of your character. We never achieve perfection in this life, but we move towards perfection as we conform ourselves to Christ. That said, it seems perfectly obvious that as our hearts are more conformed to Christ, it becomes less and less likely that being a single person alone with a person of the opposite sex would lead to sin. At a certain point, it is no longer required by prudence to avoid the situation. And of course, some people have a longer journey to get to that point than others, depending on many things such as their personality and their history. You say that being alone with the person you are courting is "a situation that's really only proper to a married person. If it is improper, it is because the couple should avoid the near occasion of sin. That's the only reason that's been offered in this conversation, anyway. If it is the near occasion of sin, that is because it is a situation in which it is likely that the couple will actually sin meaning a sin distinct from the alleged sin of being alone together. And that all hangs, of course, on how likely it is, in reality, that they will sin. As with any case, the couple themselves are called to make a judgment about that likelihood. Note that this is not "pursuing near occasions of sin", it is evaluating whether one exists. So I repeat, you are begging the question. If I wanted to pursue a near occasion of sin, I would first have to determine that one existed, and then pursue it. Finally, you may judge, in your best estimation, that any unmarried couple being alone together is pretty much always a near occasion of sin. Fine, I happen to disagree. But I don't think that there is any point in this conversation where an honest reading of what I've written can support the accusations of heresy that you have been making. Your interpretation of me as "hold[ing] virtues in opposition to one another" and promoting pursuing occasions of sin is just not supported. You're too quick to attack without understanding what the person means. That anonymous post and this one is by "Kevin". The log-in seems to be malfunctioning right now. I am amazed that people claim an error in the principle of Charity in Truth for pointing out comments that are clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. It would be one thing if it was an educational moment for someone who doesn't understand what they are saying because they don't have the background, but if West really didn't understand what his words were implying, he needs a job outside of any educational activities. This is the theological arena where wording means everything. Patrick, obviously your amazement is caused by your belief that West was "clearly out of line with Catholic teaching. I for one am unacquainted with the TOB and with both Steve's and West's approach to it, but I can't help finding really strange that West's cheerleaders here have to resort to mob-lynching against Steve offering no rational argument for it, as if Christopher West were a kind of "Ferris Bueller" of Catholic celebrities everyone is supposed to like and agree with. Obviously, it is not a sin to simply be together in the same room alone. However, all the tinder necessary for sin is present. Now, Kevin, I agree that you have made yourself much more clear in your last post. But you must agree that your first few stabs at it were not clear - I can't read minds, all I can do is go by what is printed on the page. Chris West has been giving talks for a long, long time. He hasn't gotten any clearer in his presentations over that time. His wording, his failure to appreciate or provide nuance, this is what is killing him. Nestorius didn't MEAN to be a heretic. He thought he was right - indeed, both he and Arius caused the emperor to call the councils which deposed and condemned both of them. Good intent is not enough. Their WORDS are burned when their works are burned , even when the heretics are not which was most of the time - they usually just got banished. His intent is beside the point. My comments are mere croaking in comparison. You have been warned, and you continue your obstinance at the peril of your own soul. I'm sure the next step is to start bitching about those "Novus Ordo" katholics. I don't have a "URL" because I don't have a website. Are my criticisms less credible because I don't have a website? As it were, it is a sad thing, really. As Columcille observed, even if you are "right", you lose - I just pray it isn't your soul. I have challenged you on this point in every post of mine, and in every response you have avoided it. You are twisting West's words to fit your plan, and now you are so deep into this project, to turn back appears nearly impossible. You have drunk deeply from the bitter cup of self-righteousness, and the devil thus has you by the short hairs. It is a broad and easy road to declare yourself a greater authority than the Church leadership. You hold much more in common with Luther than with Aquinas, and as long as you resist any humble self assessment about your motivations, you will continue down a destructive path. Since you take not fraternal correction but only redouble your efforts at the challenge , I will offer my Peace to you. This vendetta will end as all vendettas end - in the death of a soul. May God take the time to get your attention before you cause any further rents in the Body of Christ. Johnnyjoe, Have you considered the possibility that the "fruit" here originates with Christopher West? This drama is centered around West, not me. I don't have Alice von Hildebrand breathing down my neck. I haven't been publicly repudiated for bad theology by the people who gave me my MA in theology. It ain't me that's brought out these fruits - these are the fruits of Christopher West's teachings. Buy a clue. Steve, On the contrary, intent is nearly everything. Words just do not have one specific meaning. For one thing, there aren't nearly enough of them for that kind of rigor. Nevertheless we can hope to communicate clearly if both parties do their job. That means the listener needs to be asking "how can I understand the speaker in a way that makes sense? Chris West does not aim his presentation at theologians. He is communicating to common people that have a lot of misconceptions about very basic ideas about chastity. One of the things he is always trying to drive home is that we should be trying and striving to become truly chaste in our minds and hearts, which involves having a positive outlook on sexuality. You can't just say this once and expect it to stick. You've got to say it a thousand times in a thousand ways before people start to really get it. When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who hears him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things. Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you must avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin. None of the heretical readings you have offered are warranted. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar idea, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage. You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people are capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand. If people aren't striving to be truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they? Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with better ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and striving for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations. Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that he believes that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state. Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since St. Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, but not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would not remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that. As for the Westian canon of four-fold action, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. West's message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot West. Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide behind, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them. I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow is dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective than any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. After following this, I must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to temptation in courtship. To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this fictional "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints. To flee such situations is the only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is to promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack. It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that can be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula. I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is the first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur. As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in his Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is to realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom. INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that. The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, although there may be slight differences between those two ideas. I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves or to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the determination of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help of a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances. I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone? Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin the SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two? Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin? I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when no sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be an occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something?? Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how absurd this is if you compare it to other situations. For some, being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day? For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other side of the aisle"? For some people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat. If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to develop the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the expectation of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable. But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical proximity raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of sin through their awareness of the danger and their moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or situation. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue. Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind. Is it easier to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to avoid the near occasion of sin. I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he wants to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater heights of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary. The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with someone we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous. Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, but if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim that West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone. Your abrasive and hostile language in this entire discussion kind of disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his prison room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, slammed the door on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation. According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you? What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's. These people set you up to argue with me and are now leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how to play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin. It is. We have a different word for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be morally neutral, and it clearly is not. I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Now, am I putting word into West's mouth? No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. He's making another point entirely. I realize this may be counter-intuitive, but when somebody is speaking english and their language takes the form "a is b", they don't necessarily mean it to be taken in the absolute sense, the way a logician means it. Language is a complex and subtle thing. The important thing is whether his meaning is being successfully conveyed to his listeners. I continue to believe that if you surveyed people coming out of his talks, asking them "Does Chris West teach that there is nothing at all virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin? If those two people disagree on some matter of truth, either one may be right, but if they disagree on what West's message is, it seems reasonable to give the benefit of the doubt to the supporter. I get the feeling that if Chris West himself were to come here and try to explain what he meant, you'd still tell him he meant something else. One last thing. I am obviously a fellow who likes a good debate. Accusing them of "cult tactics" because they give up trying to argue with you is, wow, pretty paranoid and demented, now that I think about it. I don't think continuing this discussion is good for you, and I think I will do the right thing and end it. Brendan is correct - deliberately entering an occasion for sin is a sin. Kevin, as far as your remark: The Church disagrees with your assessment. You seem to think that we can't believe what someone says. I think we can. You haven't been tracking what West has been doing and saying for the last ten years. As a professional speaker, that was and is part of what I have to do - keep track of what prominent Catholics are saying and doing. In the last ten years, I see no evidence Chris West has ever changed his mind. He has just changed his tactics. This is a very interesting discusion. Considering the remarks that have come from Kevin, I think it may be important to remind him that catholic moral theology has traditionally recognized 4 natural virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity. Thomas Aquinas treats chastity under the heading of temperance. When Steve says the virtues do not act against one another, what he means is that your virture of prudence assists you in being temperate, as do your other virtues. The virtues comliment one another. It seems that it is not clear to some here that prudence is properly speaking a virtue In some places Kevin seems to be speaking of it as a faculty or a power or a tool, and not a virtue properly speaking. For that matter it is a virtue on a higher order than chastity--if want to speak "in the true Thomistic sense". Steve, I am a bit shocked by your harsh critique of CW. I find your presentation of evidence very lacking. You seem to be trying very hard to find something wrong with his work by cherry picking a few of his sentences. There is a lot of twisting going on here. You are both sons of the Church. I invite you to re-examine your motives. JWilson, I haven't presented all the evidence, just what's present in one talk on one night. If you want all the evidence, we would have to walk through a lot of his talks on a lot of different nights. Why don't you take CW's statements before the Blessed Sacrament? Ask God if it's really the case that running away from a near occasion of sin is not a virtue. See what He says. Steve, Take CW's words before the blessed sacrament? I sure have. TOB, as taught to me through CW, convinced me wadding in the tiber was not enough to live a full life in Christ. Running from sin not a virtue? Of course this is the correct action for one to take who cannot control themselves. I strongly feel you cherry picked this virtue quote out of context to shred him. This is not the fullness of what God calls us to. This groom-to-be should not lift his nose in triumph, arms at hips, and declare he has matured in virtue because he did not do anything 'dirty'. Yet, it is just this attitude CW is condemning here. It is the same attitude that took me in the spiritual gutter in my college days. Coming from a Puritanical response to unchastity we sometimes forget God's will for us to see the situation without lust or disgust, but beauty. If you really need me to explain this more, let me know. The rigidity of the fine toothed comb you are raking over CW is baffling. They are not the same. I will go with what I know. You make me feel like I am back to my days of yore when I had to debate Protestant fundamentalist over calling men father. I invite you to avoid dragging peoples' names through the mud and attaching heretical terms to them until you are fully ready to provide very strong evidence. That being said, can we meet for coffee some time? I am buddies with Dav. You have missed the larger discussion point here. Good intentions do not stop someone from making heretical statements. Those statements should be challenged if not correct so that those who do not have a theological background are not misled. If you know of someone, who should know better as a teacher of the faith, making these types of statements even occasionally you should be questioning either their competency or their intent. So, is such a person ready to marry or should he wait until he has better self-control? A virtuous person will run from sin. However, such a person has not yet been fully perfected in virtue, especially if they only hold to a dualist view of sexuality. A person with a perverted contemporary view of sexuality may need further marital preparation if they see sex as something either dirty and 'pornish' or that the honeymoon bed is an opportunity to try every self-indulgent act they have ever heard of on late night cable. Y our soundtrack for amour is important. Don't blow it by playing Christian rock or ska. Certain musical styles have been proven—through rigorous experiments in the field—to set optimal moods and attitudes geared for enhancing sexual performance in Homo sapiens. Hell, just perusing Ohio Players' LP covers should get you hornier than a submarine full of seamen. If manic rhythms with extreme frequencies stimulate you to ecstatic heights, check out the roster of DFA Records; two lengthy comps of the NYC label's output exist for your delectation, ready to score your scores till the break of dawn—or dusk. Last but not least, metronomic, lush techno and deep house music will also put some robust buck in your bang. E very college worth its salt has one—a library where men gather in the appropriately named men's room to revel in their manliness and perhaps leave spooge stains on the floor. But how does one find such men's rooms? Ask the librarian? Follow the scent of CK One and self-loathing? Simply follow the clues below. Seattle University: Rumor has it that the facilities located on the library's third and fourth floors are sex central. Sexy shame-based bonus: God—the ultimate dean of the Jesuit SU—is watching! And He doesn't like what he sees! University of Washington: Seattle Central Community College: There are no rumors about this place. But according to Seattle gay historian Adrian Ryan, "the culinary department's men's potty resembles the last days of the Roman Empire! Cornish College of the Arts: This library is extremely small. Proceed with caution, unless you are an extremely small person, in which case revel in open dirtiness wherever! S ometimes things happen, like babies. Sometimes, because of life, these babies need to be ended before they begin. Lucky for you, life-living lady, you live in a big, liberal city with big, liberal baby-ending options. This is probably going to be hard, but that does not mean it is the wrong thing to do or the right thing to do. For the record, just because sometimes someone regrets something does not mean that the thing should be illegal—were that the case, we would like to press criminal charges against the Great Knit Poncho Explosion of Tell whoever impregnated you to pony up some cash. An abortion can be paid for in installments. An abortion can be a pill better or it can be an operation worse. You do not have to tell your parents about your abortion thank you, Washington State! You will be okay. Here are your abortion service options in and around Seattle, listed by location. Aurora Medical Services, Broadway, Ste , , www. Wy, , www. Lacey near Olympia: I n general, it is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove yourself one. But if you must speak on an arty subject, just be honest—don't name-drop, don't make up shit about light and perspective and Freudian symbolism and postmodern theory unless you've read—and written essays about—the books. Say what you think and don't try to impress anybody , especially yourself. The great news is this: While good art is a marvelous thing to behold and even bad art can be instructive, arty events tend to attract plenty of loud-mouthed morons who will do the embarrassing talking for you. D o not use the word "foodie," and give up on finding a good substitute: There isn't one. You are merely a person who has a modicum of knowledge about, and enjoys a variety of, different foods. This is very fashionable right now, and for good reason: It's healthier than a fast- and processed-food diet, and being willing to put almost anything in your mouth is hot. Read up on the foods of different cultures Wikipedia is a fine start , and read food writing local papers, magazines, M. Try all kinds of food on the Ave; look for places that are full and that have high ratings online. Try good, inexpensive restaurants elsewhere: Go eat oysters at the awesome happy hour at Elliott's on the waterfront Alaskan Way, Pier 56, ; it's open to all ages. Find other all-ages happy hours; it's a cheap way to eat at great places. Be ready with a wish list when someone else is paying or when you have some cash. When you're broke, journey to Uwajimaya, browse and marvel! Go to the farmers market, browse, talk to people. Learn to cook. In general, with food—as with all things—do not bloviate. Rather, share your secrets. Be excited. Bring a date. They will love you. T he basic rule of how to behave at a music show is kind of the same rule that governs how to behave everywhere in life you may want to clip this one out of the paper and tack it onto your wall: Be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you, and don't be a jerk. It's that easy! Are other people moshing? Then maybe it's not a good show to be moshing at—maybe you're at a disco and you didn't notice. Are other people dancing? Maybe you would like to dance also! Is the show so crowded that you can't really move without stepping on toes and bumping into hapless spectators? Maybe you should watch it with the elbows then, buddy. Of course, this is not an ironclad rule. You are a special, unique individual—possibly more special and unique than anyone who has ever been to a rock concert! Don't be afraid to be the only person dancing or the first person jumping around and—without malice—bumping into your neighbors every show needs one first brave soul to get things moving. Just be aware that some people may not want to dance or have you moshing into them, and it would be awfully nice of you to let them enjoy the show in their own special and unique way. Y ou love music. Who doesn't? But you're also a broke college student who eats uncooked ramen for fun on a Friday night. You still want to support the artists you love, so that they can afford to keep eating ramen noodles in the style to which they've become accustomed and, more importantly, keep making the music you love. How do you do it? You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have to , you buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, and performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of contemporary art? Start by going to First Thursday, which happens on the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before. You've got better things to do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one of its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing. But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Silhouettes lewd, loopy puppetry. Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better. Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, unfuckwithable presence on the field, even though he's confined to the goalkeeper's box. And the guy with the best biography is Osvaldo Alonso, a Cuban defector who walked away from his Cuban team in a Wal-Mart in Texas a couple years ago and never looked back. It's a great fucking team—playing an old, simple, sexy game. For reasons no one's really figured out, the Sounders have higher average attendance at home games than any other team in American major-league soccer. They play at Qwest Field. You can get tickets at www. Wear green. W ell, here you are: We're known for, like, three things: Since you're stuck here until you graduate or burn out and get a job at Orange Julius, you might as well enjoy all the squirrels and splendor and shit. There's plenty to do adventurewise. Also, you can always swim in the lakes. You just walk down there and keep walking until the land ends and you are wet. It is amazing. Grow a beard or armpit hairs. Get a Nalgene bottle. And go to the Olympic Peninsula, where there is even a rain forest. I f you have a desire to spend time outdoors without getting too far away from your TV, laptop, and civilization, there's plenty of woodsy shit to do in-city. Seattle has, like, 19, parks, but Discovery Park in Magnolia is perhaps the best place in Seattle to take a long walk, smoke a joint, and eat a sandwich without being bothered. Green Lake is also a fine place to sit and ogle joggers. You can also rest in a big grassy field and watch or play a pickup basketball game at Green Lake's court, or rent a kayak or pedal boat and float around the lake. There's also a swing set and totally sweet merry-go-round, and sometimes some people do a thing involving dancing and rollerblading simultaneously, and you can watch this, and you will like it. Cal Anderson Park on Capitol Hill is beautiful in the summer—and there's a big concrete water-filled sculpture to splash around in—and Victor Steinbrueck Park, at the north end of the Pike Place Market, has a fantastic view of Puget Sound and is great for people-watching. It's also one of the best places in the city to buy crack and get stabbed by a hobo. If you have something against parks ass-hole! And here's another idea: For basically the price of a movie ticket, you can ride the ferry to Bainbridge Island and back. Just pay your fare, walk on, and there will be wind and water and such. Y ou may be asked to wear a pink hat! You are going to look so stupid! Just do it, because your life is about to get much, much, much better. The Land of Pink Hats and mandatorially naked ladies; the hats are required for hygiene reasons, ostensibly, but more likely the owners just want to have a laugh is Olympus Spa, with two locations: Tacoma and Lynnwood. These are Korean spas, which means they have everything a regular spa has hot tubs, cold plunges, steam saunas, dry saunas, massages , but they also have something called a body scrub. In a body scrub, a Korean lady scrubs your skin off. It is pretty great. At Banya 5, which is located more conveniently in South Lake Union, both men and women are allowed on coed days you wear a bathing suit , there are no pink hats, and the tradition is Russian. This means that in addition to the regular stuff see above , you can hire a person to smack you with giant leaves, according to custom. If you can, try not to think about being naked because it will make you less afraid of being naked. But I have this pink hat! W e are not Europe, yet. Soon we will be, but until then, drinking in public is illegal. What to do about this problem? No biggie. Just drink your booze from coffee cups, if you want to walk down the street; or drink in parks with lots of trees, if you do not want to disguise your booze. A bad park to drink in: Cal Anderson Park. There's not enough vegetation in that place; cops can see you in a minute. A good park for drinking: There are plenty of trees and bushes in that park, and cops almost never enter it. In general, you can mark the parks designed by the influential earlyth-century landscape designers the Olmsted Brothers Volunteer Park! The Olmsteds understood that a great park must afford the visitor a certain measure of privacy. U se the internet. The Sol Duc Hot Springs are a well-trod and paved and policed path full of families and nudists. And though the two camps frequently squabble in entertaining ways, both tend toward patronizing sanctimony and neither are much fun. In general, you'll want an at least 2. As for alcohol: Spring for champagne and sip, don't glug. As for drugs: Being lost and high in the woods in the dark is bad news we speak from experience. As for sex: Sadly, it's not the best idea—the thermophilic bacteria that live in hot springs are good for your outsides, but not so good for your insides. And by the time you've arranged yourself on a towel or a bed of moss and ferns, you'll probably feel pretty damn cold. Do what the spirit moves you of course! Pack it in, pack it out, etc. U nless you are some sort of Ferris Bueller—style genius of avoidance, you will read books when you are in school. Some of these books will be good. Some of these books will be very bad. But probably none of them will get you laid..

Kevin, as far as your remark: The Church disagrees with your assessment. You seem to think that we can't believe what someone says. I think we can. You haven't been tracking what West has been doing and saying for the last Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

years. As Ure Concupiscent Arent U? professional speaker, that was and is part of what I have to do - Ure Concupiscent Arent U? track of what prominent Catholics are saying and doing. In the last ten years, Here Ure Concupiscent Arent U? no evidence Chris West has ever changed his mind. He has just changed his tactics.

This is a very interesting discusion. Considering the remarks that have come from Kevin, I think it may be Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to remind him that catholic moral theology has traditionally recognized 4 natural virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity.

Thomas Aquinas treats chastity under the heading of temperance. When Steve says the virtues do not act against one Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, what he means is that your virture of prudence assists you in being temperate, as do your other virtues. The virtues comliment one another. It seems that it is not clear to some here that prudence is properly speaking a virtue In some places Kevin seems to be speaking of it as a faculty or a power or a tool, and not a virtue properly speaking.

For that matter it is a virtue on a higher order than chastity--if want to speak "in the true Thomistic sense". Steve, I am a bit shocked by your harsh critique of CW.

I find your presentation of evidence very lacking. You seem to be trying very hard to find something wrong with his work by cherry picking a few of his sentences. There is a lot of twisting going on here.

You are both sons of the Church. I invite you to re-examine your motives. JWilson, I haven't presented all the evidence, just what's present in one talk on one night.

If you want all the evidence, we would have to walk through a lot of his talks on a lot of different nights. Why don't you take CW's statements before the Blessed Sacrament? Ask God if it's really the case that running away from a near occasion of sin is not a virtue. See what He says. Steve, Take CW's words before the blessed sacrament? I sure have. TOB, as taught to me through Click, convinced me wadding in the tiber was not enough to live a full life in Christ.

Running from sin not a virtue? Of course this is the correct action for one to take who cannot control themselves. I strongly feel you cherry picked this virtue quote out of context to shred him.

This is not the fullness of what God calls us to. This groom-to-be should not lift his nose in triumph, arms at hips, and declare he has matured in virtue because Ure Concupiscent Arent U? did not do anything 'dirty'. Yet, it is just this attitude CW is condemning here.

It is the same attitude that took me in the spiritual gutter in Ure Concupiscent Arent U? college days. Coming from a Puritanical response to unchastity we sometimes forget God's will for us to see the situation without lust or disgust, but beauty.

If you really need me to explain this more, let me know. The Sinam Kapoor of the fine toothed comb you are raking over CW is baffling.

They are not the same. I will go with what I know. You make me feel like I am back to my days of yore when I had to debate Protestant fundamentalist over calling men father. I invite you to avoid dragging peoples' names through the mud and attaching heretical terms to them until you are fully ready to provide very strong evidence. That being said, can we meet for coffee some time? I am buddies with Dav. You have missed the larger discussion point here. Good intentions do not stop someone from making heretical statements.

Those statements should be challenged if not correct so that those who do not have a theological background are not misled. If you know of Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, who should know better as a teacher of the faith, making these types of statements even occasionally you should be questioning either their competency or their intent.

So, is such a person ready to marry or Ure Concupiscent Arent U? he wait until he has better self-control? A virtuous person will Ure Concupiscent Arent U? from sin. However, such a person has not yet been fully perfected in virtue, especially if they only hold to a dualist view of sexuality.

A person with a perverted contemporary view of sexuality may need further marital preparation if they see sex as something either dirty and 'pornish' or that the honeymoon bed is an opportunity to try every self-indulgent act they Ure Concupiscent Arent U? ever heard of on late night cable. Such attitudes can harm a young marriage. Well, JWilson, Chris West disagrees Ure Concupiscent Arent U? you: Christian, know thyself. But we must not call that virtue.

It is NOT Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to run away. Continence is NOT virtue. In his "Good News" he explicitly says anal sex as foreplay is perfectly acceptable, there's nothing wrong with read more much anything you want to do as long as the semen ends up in the vagina. So, Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

are out of step with Chris West on that as well. You agree with the premises of my concerns about West, you apparently just Ure Concupiscent Arent U? like the conclusion - that he's a heretic. But remember, Chris West is the one who says you are wrong.

You have a prudish understanding of sex or you Ure Concupiscent Arent U? realize that anal sex as foreplay is morally acceptable. Freedom in Christ, and all that. Janet Smith would chastise you for attacking West's presentation by disagreeing Ure Concupiscent Arent U? him. Shame on you. Steve, I click the following article you a lot. I am a bit upset by your position.

Could you please watch the following video clips from CW and pinpoint some of the areas of concern from them? I fear the two of you will agree with each other once an understanding is met, but you will miss his meaning if you only read some of his writings. Here are two: I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness. That is my point. That is CW's point. You seem to really be trying hard to not see this, and to find ways to confuse the message trying to be Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

from CW. Please copy the entire text here with page number. If memory serves, I believe he has stated such activities are not explicitly against church teachings, but still might not be a good idea. You simply are cherry picking again out of context. Please refer to the video clips I linked. I Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

no concerns about West. The two of you agree on more than you realize, but seem to express it in two different ways. I hold to the hope that this is true.

However, Johnnyjoe's comment seems to Ure Concupiscent Arent U? a more reasonable conclusion: Call no man father. JWilson, "I hope you and I can Ure Concupiscent Arent U? that a Ure Concupiscent Arent U? who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness" Well, as a matter of fact, I don't know that I agree. If they are contemplating marriage, then they are undoubtedly contemplating sex. You don't marry someone you don't want to have sex click the following article. The whole point of marriage is that it's a vocation.

If marriage Ure Concupiscent Arent U? your Ure Concupiscent Arent U? from God, that means you aren't complete until you Ure Concupiscent Arent U? married. So, it may be that this couple has, indeed, grown as far as they can in holiness given the graces Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

go here meant to have marriage versus the graces they actually have in their hands right now lack of marriage graces. Chris West doesn't seem to account for the grace of vocation, or any sacramental continue reading, for Ure Concupiscent Arent U? matter. But, you say this Ure Concupiscent Arent U? your point. Then, you say this is CW's point. There is nothing in his statement which indicates your supposition is correct.

If he had said the couple displayed virtue, I might grant you the point. But he denied that they displayed virtue. He didn't qualify it later, he didn't modify it, he kept saying it over and over. Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

didn't display virtue. Continence is not a virtue. He released a 2nd edition precisely because the 1st edition was getting so Ure Concupiscent Arent U? heat on that point. You can't get a copy of the first edition anymore. Furthermore, anal foreplay IS against church teachings. Smith and Waldstein have argued they aren't, but they have provided ZERO proof of their contention, while all the manuals inveigh Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

anal sex of any kind. Look, this is how West plays the game. Westians never deal with what is actually said. In his clip "http: You say that's cool and great that West is so insightful on Hefner. He holds up a blank sheet, says it holds "a beautiful painting", crumples it, then says Hugh Hefner tried to rescue that crumpled, beautiful painting out of the trash.

Now, all Hefner ever did was take pictures of naked women. So, West is implying Ure Concupiscent Arent U? "beautiful picture" is a picture of a naked woman. He's saying we should all be able to look at naked women without any problem.

He then goes on to talk about our bodies being holy. All fine and good. But he ends by making the implicit claim that because of Christ, we should be able to see naked bodies without the problems of Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, which is the same implicit claim he started with when he pulled the blank-Hefner-sheet out of the source. Back in the late 's, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? made the self-same Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

to two of the most renowned popular theologians in the Catholic Ure Concupiscent Arent U? today - he said that if he properly implemented TOB, he should be able to look at their naked wives without a problem. Both of theologians jumped down his throat pointing out that he Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

thereby denying the Catholic doctrine on concupiscence. Ure Concupiscent Arent U? organization taping the program canned the interview because West was obviously expressing heterodox views. All West has done in this video is change his language so his flawed understanding of concupiscence isn't as obvious. As far as his doctrine goes, he hasn't changed a damned thing.

It's still there in his presentation. The Arians and the semi-Pelagians used to pull the same crap. You are putting words in my mouth.

West is reminding us that the original nakedness and sexuality of humanity is good, true and beautiful. For Ure Concupiscent Arent U? like me, we were raised thinking sexual pleasure was something dirty and bad that you got to get to do once you got married.

Nakedness is beautiful. The way the Cistine Chapel portrays this is beautiful. The way Playboy portrays nakedness is twisted. With the eyes of Christ, we Ure Concupiscent Arent U? be able to see the beauty of nakedness as Michaelangelo portrayed it, not the Hefner way. Also, CW is not denying that some born again saints may see the Cistine Chapel and lust, but I believe he agrees we should realize there is a beauty beyond such disordered passion.

Both of theologians jumped down his throat Saints have been dismissed by even bishops before. Show me the link to the magisterial document.

Tell me the paragraph number in Ure Concupiscent Arent U? catechism. I am under the impression such teaching has never been codified. You copy and paste half of one and now you have presented the full CW? Come on Steve. Over and over. People like me grew up with the options of seeing sexuality as a nihistic free for all or that it is a dirty act that we undergo for some good reason. The Hefners of the world profess sexuality is a recreational activity.

The Puritans avoided it, sweeping the issue under the rug. The truth is in a third way.

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Sexuality is beautiful. There are no rumors about this place. But according to Seattle gay historian Adrian Ryan, "the culinary department's men's potty resembles the last days of the Roman Empire! Cornish College of the Arts: This library is extremely small. Proceed with caution, unless you are an extremely small person, in which case revel in open dirtiness wherever! S ometimes things happen, like babies. Sometimes, because of life, these babies need to be ended before they begin.

Lucky for you, life-living lady, you live in a big, liberal city with big, liberal baby-ending options. This is probably going to be hard, but that does not mean it is the wrong Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

to do or the right thing to do. For the record, just because sometimes someone regrets something does not Ure Concupiscent Arent U? that the thing should be illegal—were that the case, we would like to press criminal charges against the Great Knit Poncho Explosion of Tell whoever impregnated you to pony up some cash. An abortion can be paid for in installments. An abortion can be a pill better or it can be an operation worse.

You do not have to tell your parents about your abortion thank you, Washington State! You will be okay. Here are your abortion service options in and around Seattle, listed by location. Aurora Medical Services, Broadway, Ste, www. Wy,www. Lacey near Olympia: I n general, it is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove yourself one. But if you must speak on an arty subject, just be honest—don't name-drop, don't make up shit about light and perspective and Freudian symbolism and postmodern theory unless you've read—and written essays about—the books.

Say what you think and don't try to impress anybodyespecially yourself. The great news is this: While good art is a marvelous thing to behold and even bad art can be instructive, arty events tend to attract plenty of loud-mouthed morons who will do the embarrassing talking for you.

D o not use the word "foodie," and give up on finding a good substitute: There isn't one. You are merely a person who has a modicum of knowledge about, and enjoys a variety of, different foods.

This is very fashionable right now, and for good reason: It's healthier than a fast- and processed-food diet, and being willing to put almost anything in your mouth is hot. Read up on the foods of different cultures Wikipedia is a fine startand read food writing local papers, magazines, M. Try all kinds of food on the Ave; look for places that are full Ure Concupiscent Arent U? that have high ratings online. Try good, inexpensive restaurants elsewhere: Go eat oysters at the awesome happy Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

at Elliott's on the waterfront Alaskan Way, Pier 56, ; it's open to all ages. Find other all-ages happy hours; it's a cheap way to eat Ure Concupiscent Arent U? great places. Be ready with a wish list when Ure Concupiscent Arent U? else is paying or when you have some cash. When you're broke, journey to Uwajimaya, browse and marvel! Go to the farmers Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, browse, talk to people. Learn to cook. In general, with food—as with all Ure Concupiscent Arent U? not bloviate.

Rather, share Ure Concupiscent Arent U? secrets. Be excited. Bring a date. They will love you. T he basic rule of how to behave at a music show is kind of the same rule that governs how to behave everywhere in life you may want to clip this one out of the paper and tack it onto your wall: Be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you, and don't be a jerk.

It's that easy! Are other people moshing? Then maybe it's not a good show to be moshing at—maybe you're at Ure Concupiscent Arent U? disco and you didn't notice. Are other people Ure Concupiscent Arent U? Maybe you would like to dance also! Is the show so crowded that you can't really move without stepping on toes and bumping into hapless spectators?

Maybe you should watch it with the elbows then, buddy. Of course, link is not an ironclad Ure Concupiscent Arent U?. You are a special, unique individual—possibly more special and unique than anyone who has ever been to a rock concert! Don't be Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to be the only person dancing Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the first person jumping around and—without malice—bumping into your neighbors every show needs one first brave soul to get things moving.

Just be aware that some people may not want to dance or have you moshing into them, and it would be awfully nice of you to let Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

enjoy the show in their own special and unique way. Y ou love music. Who doesn't? But you're also a broke college student who eats uncooked ramen for fun on a Friday night.

You still want to support the artists you love, so that they can afford to keep eating ramen noodles in the style to which they've become accustomed and, more importantly, keep making the music you love.

How do you do Inchinose America You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have toyou buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of Ure Concupiscent Arent U? art? Start by going to First Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, which happens Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before.

You've got better things Ure Concupiscent Arent U? do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one see more its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing.

But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Ure Concupiscent Arent U? lewd, loopy puppetry.

Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better.

Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

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Tpxxx Feerhtml Watch Video Sexsl Desi. When I read his comments specifically about spending time alone together, it is obvious that he is fighting against poor catechesis that says: West's message is perfectly clear to everyone who hears him But I want to emphasise that that expectation is unreasonable. He is saying things that are true, using language that people understand. If the ideas that a common person takes away from his presentation are true, a theologian has no right to demand he change the way he says things. Truths are more important than words, and nobody owns the english language. What he is saying in this particular instance is: Don't think that avoiding occasions of sin is the highest form of chastity. The fact that you must avoid being alone together in order to avoid sin means that something is deeply wrong. You are called to a greater holiness. If you strive for it, undergoing "deep and painful purifications", you can actually be transformed so that being alone together is no longer a near occasion of sin. None of the heretical readings you have offered are warranted. He's not saying to pursue occasions of sin. If he seems flippant on that point it is because he knows it's a concept that everybody is familiar with. He is trying to get them to see beyond that familiar idea, to greater things. He's not denying the grace of the sacrament of marriage. You yourself agreed that marriage doesn't mean an instantaneous change in what people are capable of. That's exactly what he was getting at when he said there is no waving of a magic wand. If people aren't striving to be truly chaste before marriage, when they are baptised and have access to the Eucharist and Confession, they're probably not going to get much from the grace of marriage, are they? Chris West is addressing people whose catechesis on chastity is basically the crude 4 points I listed above. His goal is to penetrate that thinking with better ideas, in a way that propells people into seeking and striving for holiness. If you surveyed people coming out of one of his talks, using language they could understand, I don't think they would agree with your interpretations. Being alone together will be a near occasion of sin for some, but not a near occasion of sin for others. The problem with West, as I see it, is that he believes that ALL should be able to reach the point at which it is not a near occasion of sin. That simply won't happen in the wayfaring state. Not everyone can become "virtuous" in the Westian sense of the word. I find West's use of "Thomistic" ironic since St. Thomas, so the story goes, chased away a prostitute with a log from the fire she had been sent by his family to tempt him. Kevin, Everyone is called to sainthood, but not everyone is called to what West's version of sanctity. Paul had a thorn in his side that God would not remove, for He showed forth His strength in Paul's weakness. West would do well to remember that. As for the Westian canon of four-fold action, running away IS self-control. It takes strength to run away from a near occasion of sin. West keeps pushing this meme that all Catholics thought "sex is bad! He's flat wrong. West's message IS perfectly clear. It's also heretical. That's why he's a problem. You're a perfect example - you're a big fan, and you keep getting the theology wrong: All because you parrot West. Sure, he throws up a fig leaf in favor so he has a rock to hide behind, but like every scorpion, he spends most of his time stinging us with his mockery. He scuttles back under the rock of the first sentence when anyone calls him on it. I've talked with people coming out of his talks - a lot of them. I know. I have worked with people who have done both kinds of programs. Everyone talks about the "enormous fruits" West brings to the table, but all I've seen him sow is dissension among Catholics, as per the percentages above. His spiel is no more effective than any other delivery of the real Catholic teaching on sex and marriage. After following this, I must retract my dismissive remark above about defenders of West. I realize now lots of people for lots of reasons are influenced by the popular culture and by heretics like West. No-one is too smart to be persuaded into error, just as no-one is so transcendentally chaste to be immune to temptation in courtship. To enter an occasion of mortal sin is in fact a mortal sin in itself. There is no merit in entering one in order to exercise or demonstrate this fictional "Westian" transcendental chastity. That sort of confidence is foolishness, according to the Church and all the Saints. To flee such situations is the only wise, chaste, and prudent act. To assert that an occasion of sin is only one for those who engage in sin when they enter it is to promote a game of craps with the souls of men and the Blood of Christ. Steve, you're not even trying to understand what I'm saying. All you're trying to do is find the worst possible interpretation of it so you can continue your attack. It is interesting to note that theologians do duke it out with one another. Since I'm not a theologian, I find this discussion boring. As a catechist, I'm looking for "simple. For example, the TOB for Teens is a week study. This is way too much for a high school CCD program, unless students are already enrolled in a Catholic high school. There is too much to teach, we need something simple that can be integrated in existing Catholic religious curricula. I believe that West is a passing phenomenon. Keep up the good work! Steve Kellmeyer, Thank you for posting "Chris and the Cult". This is the first time I have read anything of yours and I'm impressed by your feisty defence of the truth. Keep up the good fight. You're on the side of the angels. Re Anonymous They have noted that it is precisely at the point where the heart begins to make significant progress in conforming to Christ that some of the severest temptations in relation to the opposite sex can occur. As well, the attitude of believing oneself no longer in danger of temptation is essentially one of presumption. As Chesterton has illustrated so well in his Fr. Brown stories the Catholic position is to realise that anyone can be capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a non-catholic position to assume that simply by being a 'good' Christian one will no longer commit sins. Here are two examples from Chesterton: Anonymous commenter, Like I said at the very beginning, I'm not suggesting that unmarried couples vacation together alone. I'm not even suggesting they be alone together in a bedroom. INdeed, why would they? What I'm saying is that the judgment of what situations are near occasions of sin is based on an evaluation of the likelihood of a sin occuring. If a person pursuing holiness is being attacked with great temptations like what you describe, it is completely appropriate to make boundaries that recognize that. The "severity" of a temptation is probably a measure quite similar to the likelihood of sinning, although there may be slight differences between those two ideas. I'm not promoting an attitude of presumption. I'm not suggesting people take big risks to prove themselves or to practice fighting temptation. I'm saying that the determination of whether a near occasion of sin exists is up to the couple to make, perhaps with the help of a spiritual director, and futhermore that it is completely plausible and unsurprising that some mature Christian couples should find no temptation in being alone together under the right circumstances. I will go even farther than that. If you can honestly say that spending any time alone together would lead to sin, you are not prepared to be discerning marriage. What does it say about your self-control? What if after getting married, some woman at work takes a liking to you and your wife knows about it? Can you expect her to trust you if you couldn't even handle spending a little time with her without a chaperone? Man up and take some responsibility for yourself, for goodness sake. As I pointed out in the essay, and as JP II insisted, the third reason for sex in marriage is the quieting of concupiscence. No, of course not. Yes, of course. Is a near occasion of sin the SAME as sin? No, of course not - that's why we have two different phrases. Is it foolish and dangerous to confuse the two? Yes - that's why Chris West is foolish and dangerous. Wait aminute Christopher West grew up in a cult? This conversation is unbelievable! You seem to be deliberately avoiding the only relevant question: Can it be that for two young people who like each other a lot, being alone together is not an occasion of sin? I answer yes, and for a mature Christian couple, being alone together under the right circumstances is very likely not an occasion of sin. You don't have to argue that being alone together is sometimes an occasion of sin even when no sin takes place -- I already agree! You don't have to argue that for some people, being alone together would always be an occasion of sin -- I already agree! Do I need to draw you a venn diagram or something?? Beyond the mere possibility of couples spending time alone together in a situation that is not the near occasion of sin, we also seem to disagree on whether this is a realistic possibility that people should work towards. I think it will become clear how absurd this is if you compare it to other situations. For some, being around folks who swear and cuss is a near occasion of sin because such language is very contagious. Should we not work towards having the self control not to be influenced by such language? Should we have the expectation of not being influenced by bad language, at least some day? For some, following the political news every day is a near occasion of sin because they tend to react with anger and hatred to ideas they disagree with. Should they have the expectation of one day being able to pleasantly discuss politics with those on the "other side of the aisle"? For some people, walking by the ice cream in the grocery store might be a severe temptation to buy some chocolate ice cream, which they know would cause them to overeat. If you think I'm being flippant, ask a few married women whether they prefer chocolate to sex. Should they not try to develop the self control to pass by the ice cream without giving in? Should they have the expectation of one day being able to do so? Is it theoretically possible that two unmarried young people who love each other can occupy the same room alone together and it not be a near occasion of sin? An occasion of sin is near if the danger is "certain and probable. But you should now see the issue. In order for it NOT to be a near occasion of sin, there has to be within both parties a MENTAL recognition of, and refusal to engage in, the sinful possibilities that the physical proximity raise. In short, even in this situation, both parties must MENTALLY flee the near occasion of sin through their awareness of the danger and their moment-to-moment choices. This isn't an either-or situation. West treats it as if it is. His words mock the first virtuous act as NOT virtuous and NOT worthy of emulation while he simultaneously endorses the second way to display virtue. Unfortunately, according to sacramental theology the theology of the created thing, i. Put another way, it is nigh unto impossible to manage the second kind of virtue without having practiced the first kind. Is it easier to to do via reception on the tongue? Obviously there is some virtue in chosing to avoid the near occasion of sin. I don't think West would deny that either. But I think he wants to say that this exercise of virtue is is some sense trivial in comparison to the greater heights of virtue that would make avoiding being alone together unnecessary. The more fully we have internalized chastity, the more natural it is to simply chose not to sin, rather than going through the rigamarole of finding a chaperone every time we spend time with someone we are courting. So when he says "We must not call that virtue", a more exact phrasing for a philosophically inclined audience would be "We must not think that's all there is to virtue", or else "We must not think that the ability to avoid such a situation means that we are completely virtuous. Yes, he might be swinging the bat and connecting with the ball, but if we are promoting baseball skills, it's perfectly reasonable for us to say "We must not call that hitting. Also I would suggest you protest too much when you continuously claim that West "mocks" the practice of avoiding being alone together. You are trying to add insinuation to his words that is not there. He is not belittling anyone. Your abrasive and hostile language in this entire discussion kind of disqualifies you from making that kind of plead, anyway. Thomas RAN from sin. When the prostitute was placed in his prison room, he chased her out of the room with a fiery brand, slammed the door on her, inscribed a cross on the door with the charcoal from the brand, THEN prayed to God for deliverance from this temptation. According to Chris West, St. Thomas did NOT display virtue right then. Instead, I suppose, St. Thomas should have sat down with her and discussed her profession or discoursed on the acceptability of anal intercourse as foreplay. Christopher West asserted a stinking heresy. That's not hostility, that's an accurate assessment of his statements. Oh, and Kevin, have you noticed that "Johnnyjoe" and "Circumcille" who are probably the same person disappeared right when I asked them two questions: Who are you? What is your relation to Chris West? They were Chris' troll s. I strongly suspect one of them was one of the Healy's. These people set you up to argue with me and are now leaving you out to dry. This is typical cult tactics - divide and conquer. He's the product of a cult. He knows how to play this game. How long do you want to play it? I am the one who said deliberately entering an occasion of sin is a sin. It is. We have a different word for it because it is not the same thing. To deliberately enter a near occasion of sin is not to commit that sin but to commit the sin of presumption, as you yourself say, Steve. It would be nonsensical to equate them as synonymous, because they are not, but it is still an offense. If it were not, then it would not be wrong. It would be morally neutral, and it clearly is not. I wish I had a source to reference better than myself. I learned it from a priest whom I trust to know these things. I suspect those two decided early on that you aren't worth arguing with. They may have been right. I've almost stopped a couple times, but I find I don't mind making things a little clearer for people who happen upon your site. Now, am I putting word into West's mouth? No, I don't think so. The fact is, I read his words and it never occurs to me that he would be suggesting that there is NOTHING virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin. He's making another point entirely. I realize this may be counter-intuitive, but when somebody is speaking english and their language takes the form "a is b", they don't necessarily mean it to be taken in the absolute sense, the way a logician means it. Language is a complex and subtle thing. The important thing is whether his meaning is being successfully conveyed to his listeners. I continue to believe that if you surveyed people coming out of his talks, asking them "Does Chris West teach that there is nothing at all virtuous about avoiding the near occasion of sin? If those two people disagree on some matter of truth, either one may be right, but if they disagree on what West's message is, it seems reasonable to give the benefit of the doubt to the supporter. I get the feeling that if Chris West himself were to come here and try to explain what he meant, you'd still tell him he meant something else. One last thing. I am obviously a fellow who likes a good debate. Accusing them of "cult tactics" because they give up trying to argue with you is, wow, pretty paranoid and demented, now that I think about it. I don't think continuing this discussion is good for you, and I think I will do the right thing and end it. Brendan is correct - deliberately entering an occasion for sin is a sin. Kevin, as far as your remark: The Church disagrees with your assessment. You seem to think that we can't believe what someone says. I think we can. You haven't been tracking what West has been doing and saying for the last ten years. As a professional speaker, that was and is part of what I have to do - keep track of what prominent Catholics are saying and doing. In the last ten years, I see no evidence Chris West has ever changed his mind. He has just changed his tactics. This is a very interesting discusion. Considering the remarks that have come from Kevin, I think it may be important to remind him that catholic moral theology has traditionally recognized 4 natural virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity. Thomas Aquinas treats chastity under the heading of temperance. When Steve says the virtues do not act against one another, what he means is that your virture of prudence assists you in being temperate, as do your other virtues. The virtues comliment one another. It seems that it is not clear to some here that prudence is properly speaking a virtue In some places Kevin seems to be speaking of it as a faculty or a power or a tool, and not a virtue properly speaking. For that matter it is a virtue on a higher order than chastity--if want to speak "in the true Thomistic sense". Steve, I am a bit shocked by your harsh critique of CW. I find your presentation of evidence very lacking. You seem to be trying very hard to find something wrong with his work by cherry picking a few of his sentences. There is a lot of twisting going on here. You are both sons of the Church. I invite you to re-examine your motives. JWilson, I haven't presented all the evidence, just what's present in one talk on one night. If you want all the evidence, we would have to walk through a lot of his talks on a lot of different nights. Why don't you take CW's statements before the Blessed Sacrament? Ask God if it's really the case that running away from a near occasion of sin is not a virtue. See what He says. Steve, Take CW's words before the blessed sacrament? I sure have. TOB, as taught to me through CW, convinced me wadding in the tiber was not enough to live a full life in Christ. Running from sin not a virtue? Of course this is the correct action for one to take who cannot control themselves. I strongly feel you cherry picked this virtue quote out of context to shred him. This is not the fullness of what God calls us to. This groom-to-be should not lift his nose in triumph, arms at hips, and declare he has matured in virtue because he did not do anything 'dirty'. Yet, it is just this attitude CW is condemning here. It is the same attitude that took me in the spiritual gutter in my college days. Coming from a Puritanical response to unchastity we sometimes forget God's will for us to see the situation without lust or disgust, but beauty. If you really need me to explain this more, let me know. The rigidity of the fine toothed comb you are raking over CW is baffling. They are not the same. I will go with what I know. You make me feel like I am back to my days of yore when I had to debate Protestant fundamentalist over calling men father. I invite you to avoid dragging peoples' names through the mud and attaching heretical terms to them until you are fully ready to provide very strong evidence. That being said, can we meet for coffee some time? I am buddies with Dav. You have missed the larger discussion point here. Good intentions do not stop someone from making heretical statements. Those statements should be challenged if not correct so that those who do not have a theological background are not misled. If you know of someone, who should know better as a teacher of the faith, making these types of statements even occasionally you should be questioning either their competency or their intent. So, is such a person ready to marry or should he wait until he has better self-control? A virtuous person will run from sin. However, such a person has not yet been fully perfected in virtue, especially if they only hold to a dualist view of sexuality. A person with a perverted contemporary view of sexuality may need further marital preparation if they see sex as something either dirty and 'pornish' or that the honeymoon bed is an opportunity to try every self-indulgent act they have ever heard of on late night cable. Such attitudes can harm a young marriage. Well, JWilson, Chris West disagrees with you: Christian, know thyself. But we must not call that virtue. It is NOT virtuous to run away. Continence is NOT virtue. In his "Good News" he explicitly says anal sex as foreplay is perfectly acceptable, there's nothing wrong with pretty much anything you want to do as long as the semen ends up in the vagina. So, you are out of step with Chris West on that as well. You agree with the premises of my concerns about West, you apparently just don't like the conclusion - that he's a heretic. But remember, Chris West is the one who says you are wrong. You have a prudish understanding of sex or you would realize that anal sex as foreplay is morally acceptable. Freedom in Christ, and all that. Janet Smith would chastise you for attacking West's presentation by disagreeing with him. Shame on you. Steve, I respect you a lot. I am a bit upset by your position. Could you please watch the following video clips from CW and pinpoint some of the areas of concern from them? I fear the two of you will agree with each other once an understanding is met, but you will miss his meaning if you only read some of his writings. Here are two: I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness. That is my point. That is CW's point. You seem to really be trying hard to not see this, and to find ways to confuse the message trying to be sent from CW. Please copy the entire text here with page number. If memory serves, I believe he has stated such activities are not explicitly against church teachings, but still might not be a good idea. You simply are cherry picking again out of context. Please refer to the video clips I linked. I have no concerns about West. The two of you agree on more than you realize, but seem to express it in two different ways. I hold to the hope that this is true. However, Johnnyjoe's comment seems to be a more reasonable conclusion: Call no man father. JWilson, "I hope you and I can agree that a couple who believe their only defense against fornication is avoidance of ever being alone still have a way to develop in holiness" Well, as a matter of fact, I don't know that I agree. If they are contemplating marriage, then they are undoubtedly contemplating sex. You don't marry someone you don't want to have sex with. The whole point of marriage is that it's a vocation. If marriage is your vocation from God, that means you aren't complete until you are married. So, it may be that this couple has, indeed, grown as far as they can in holiness given the graces they are meant to have marriage versus the graces they actually have in their hands right now lack of marriage graces. Chris West doesn't seem to account for the grace of vocation, or any sacramental grace, for that matter. But, you say this is your point. Then, you say this is CW's point. There is nothing in his statement which indicates your supposition is correct. If he had said the couple displayed virtue, I might grant you the point. But he denied that they displayed virtue. He didn't qualify it later, he didn't modify it, he kept saying it over and over. They didn't display virtue. Continence is not a virtue. He released a 2nd edition precisely because the 1st edition was getting so much heat on that point. You can't get a copy of the first edition anymore. Furthermore, anal foreplay IS against church teachings. Smith and Waldstein have argued they aren't, but they have provided ZERO proof of their contention, while all the manuals inveigh against anal sex of any kind. Look, this is how West plays the game. Westians never deal with what is actually said. In his clip "http: You say that's cool and great that West is so insightful on Hefner. He holds up a blank sheet, says it holds "a beautiful painting", crumples it, then says Hugh Hefner tried to rescue that crumpled, beautiful painting out of the trash. Now, all Hefner ever did was take pictures of naked women. So, West is implying this "beautiful picture" is a picture of a naked woman. He's saying we should all be able to look at naked women without any problem. He then goes on to talk about our bodies being holy. All fine and good. But he ends by making the implicit claim that because of Christ, we should be able to see naked bodies without the problems of concupiscence, which is the same implicit claim he started with when he pulled the blank-Hefner-sheet out of the trash. Back in the late 's, West made the self-same argument to two of the most renowned popular theologians in the Catholic world today - he said that if he properly implemented TOB, he should be able to look at their naked wives without a problem. Both of theologians jumped down his throat pointing out that he was thereby denying the Catholic doctrine on concupiscence. The organization taping the program canned the interview because West was obviously expressing heterodox views. All West has done in this video is change his language so his flawed understanding of concupiscence isn't as obvious. As far as his doctrine goes, he hasn't changed a damned thing. It's still there in his presentation. The Arians and the semi-Pelagians used to pull the same crap. You are putting words in my mouth. West is reminding us that the original nakedness and sexuality of humanity is good, true and beautiful. For people like me, we were raised thinking sexual pleasure was something dirty and bad that you got to get to do once you got married. Nakedness is beautiful. The way the Cistine Chapel portrays this is beautiful. The way Playboy portrays nakedness is twisted. With the eyes of Christ, we should be able to see the beauty of nakedness as Michaelangelo portrayed it, not the Hefner way. Also, CW is not denying that some born again saints may see the Cistine Chapel and lust, but I believe he agrees we should realize there is a beauty beyond such disordered passion. Both of theologians jumped down his throat Saints have been dismissed by even bishops before. Show me the link to the magisterial document. Tell me the paragraph number in the catechism. I am under the impression such teaching has never been codified. You copy and paste half of one and now you have presented the full CW? Come on Steve. Over and over. People like me grew up with the options of seeing sexuality as a nihistic free for all or that it is a dirty act that we undergo for some good reason. The Hefners of the world profess sexuality is a recreational activity. The Puritans avoided it, sweeping the issue under the rug. The truth is in a third way. Sexuality is beautiful. Our [mine and others] version of it has become damaged. Christ shows us there is a pure and beautiful way. This is the message of TOB. This is the message of CW. CW is not a proper theologian. He is a speaker and a spiritual author who is teaching to a set audience that is not the larger theological body of the church. If you read him as a strict theologian, I can understand how one might be taken back. However, if you read him from the target audience perspective, you get a different view than the one you are condemning through your blog. See him from this view, and I think you will find your accusations of heresy assuaged. Thank you Steve. Everything you say is right. I have attended West's talks and left appalled and embarrassed. I appreciate those people who have returned to the church because they were finally told by CW that sex wasn't bad, but he was merely the occasion of their return, not the cause. I appreciate those people who in their own goodness of heart can pull out the beauty and truth about sex, nakedness, etc. But again - that reflects those good people, not CW. David Schindler is arguably the greatest American theologian. Carl Anderson, head of the Knights of Columbus, requested Schindler's article for the Knights website. As a commentator pointed out on another site, the 1 reason for CW's problems is his lack of understanding of the 4th Lateran Council's "greater dissimilitude" statement: But instead most people just make the same mistake over and over: He is getting it out badly. Yes, some on this site came back to the Church after hearing CW. Instead, CW has cornered the market with his very lucrative snake oil, and he will attack anyone who threatens his business plan. He's a Rohrschach for you. You impute to him whatever good motives you wish you had. Unfortunately, his very words convict him. Everyone keeps talking about West's address of Puritanism or Manicheanism. A Prove it. Quote someone besides a Westian who holds to that view. It's absolutely a violation of the history to make the statement. B The charge could equally be made that West is: As for problems with anal sex, not only can we point to Summa Theologica, 2a2ae, q, a1, Since anal sex, even anal foreplay, involves extremely unhygenic and therefore dangerous sexual practice, especially in reference to the female, it is forbidden simply on those grounds alone. That West or Smith or anyone else even attempts to justify it is ludicrous on its face, as even Slate pointed out http: We DO agree on one thing: If West is not a proper theologian, and we both agree he is not, then he is not an Athanasian or a Thomist either. I think you are right about many of the points you make about CW. I do think the heart of what he says is right and you have cherry-picked a few errors here and there. It is a good thing to do whan done charitably. Your tone does not feel very charitable to me. I hope your heart is not as hateful as it seems from your post. We must simply recall that bishops have frequently backed extremely erroneous teachers and teachings. Indeed, nearly every major heresy of the Church was started or actively supported by an ordained man or men. I do object to making your opinion more important than the bishops. Every pro-abortion Catholic can find theologians who agree with him. The Catholic faith is defined by the bishops and popes. It is not defined by you. I do not doubt that West gets a few things wrong. I also do not doubt that he wants to communicate the ideas of John Paul II as accurately as possible. As Catholics we need to explain to this world why we feel God's sexual morality is logical and beautiful. He is one on the few to make that case rather than just making rules. Randy, I've explained exactly how Chris West is distorting Catholic teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography. In none of those cases did I refer to my opinion. I referred to the constant teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography. Chris West's words do not follow the teachings of the Church. The only way you can force them into the Church's mold is to read Chris West's "intentions" into the words. I am unable to read minds, so I have not the skill to read his unspoken intentions. I can only read his words. Thus, the only one bringing "opinions" to the table is the Westians. Chris West is not the only one making the Church's case. Nor, for that matter, is he the only one distorting the Church's case. He is, however, the only one distorting the Church's case while pretending to present the Church's case. The story has nothing to do with Christoper West. Nothing at all. Rather it is yet another example of Steve Kellmeyer prosecuting his personal vendetta against Christopher West. Fraternal joy, charity, forgiveness, constructive action, all of these have been set aflame before the idol of Steve's vindictive personality and blind rage. Well done Steve. How does that joyless acidic vindictive spirit play in the market place, eh? I bet speaking invitations are pouring in. Just can't keep the phone on the hook, eh? The people just can't get enough of your distinctive style of bitterness, private inquisition, with the cherry of Catholic doctrine on top. What a winning combination. I've told you before that you are hurting your reputation as a Catholic presenter, and gaining one as a Catholic hypocrite. Previously I've shared with you that Truth is impotent without Charity. Now it seems that you have even rejected the standards of truth in waging your war against the person of Christopher West with this latest headline attack. Like I said, I organize Catholic speakers to come to a major urban diocese. Most of the speakers I talk to have filled calendars with speaking engagements. Steve, I would not invite you to come and speak and I would recommend the same to others. Because you lack charity. I see from your calendar of speaking engagements that you have a total of 3 events scheduled for the entire year. Steve, I would get up from your computer, go into the other room and take a look contemplative look at your wife and children and then ask yourself if they are worth sacrificing at the altar of your personal vendetta against Christopher West. Your war is hurting them because it is hurting your ability to draw speaking engagements. By the way, your war is also hurting the Church. Spend a day away from your computer and go to an adoration chapel. I've explained exactly how Chris West is distorting Catholic teaching on virtue, the sacrament of marriage, concupiscence and pornography I read that. I said you points are mostly valid. They are minor and nitpicky but it is good to get the details right. Chris is not a man of few words. His intentions are clear if you listen to him talk long enough. Does he get everything right? Who does? But to accuse him of distorting the teaching of the church is just not accurate. You don't get out much. Almost every Catholic University has many professors who pretend to be teaching the Catholic faith when they are not. This is the rule not the exception. Most Catholic educators teach that contraception, homosexuality, abortion, masturbation, etc. Chris accepts the churches teachings. He explains them well. Would I defend all his analogies and sweeping statements? He does over-state things sometimes. This is why critiques are good. But you need to remember that he is one of us. This makes me wonder if you ever listen to him. I'm a very late comer to this conversation, and the invective is pretty surprising. I do know that some very learned people that are far more educated on this subject than I will ever be have some very serious concerns about West's work. There are also a number who seem to think his work is wonderful. However, being a guy with a job and wife and six kids and trying to grow in the Grace of God, I tend to be pretty conservative and stick to the classics of theology, from Acquinas to a Kempis. This discussion encourages me to stay away from West - whether Steve K. I don't know that West offers anything of such great value as to run the risk of exposing myself or my family to faulty Catholic theology. I will say this - I sure hate to see comments telling Steve to go look in the mirror and see what he's doing to his family by arguing for what he thinks is right, and with what to me is a very reasonable critique. That's a pretty low shot, and not terribly "charitable. It does seem somewhat strange that some of West's defenders certainly seem to take any critique of him, even one stingingly presented, as a personal affront. I've seen this other places, and leads to some questions as to their motives. This is the first time I've come across Kellmeyer's critique of West's work. I am not a theologian but I am married to one and I am accustomed to this type of writing: One theologian discussing, dissecting, weighing the words of another. I did not see any ad hominem but only a serious discussion of the public theology of West. For those of you who have not had the opportunity to spend time in academic circles I assure you that this is entirely normal! And expected. Particularly for very public theologians who have a great responsibility to ensure that EVERY word is precise and true. A man who publicly advances a theological position should expect and welcome an academic challenge. He should also have or develop a very thick skin because heated debate is a part of his chosen profession. I was sorry that I afterward stepped into the muck and grime of this comment board. Much of the discussion here does not follow in the tradition of true academic debate although it pretends to. There was no personal attack in the original post; it addresses the theology of West, who is a PUBLIC teacher and aught to expect be held accountable in this way. But the attacks against the author are clearly personal. Also, after reading most of the comments here I am a little stunned by a running idea that goes something like this: I have to say that the longer I live the more I realize that virtue never ceases to be an intense struggle. It changes but it does not stop. It is the reason that great Christian men and women have fallen after a lifetime of faithfulness. It never ceases to be a battle and I object to any efforts that contrive to take our eyes off that ball. I avoid being alone with men other than my husband not including family members. I don't accept rides home with them. I do not have them to my home without other adults in company. I do not spend unnecessary long periods of time on the phone with them. I do not develop internet relationships with them. I do not listen to Chris West talks in mixed company. Is this because I have no self-control? Or because I am attracted to everything that moves? It is because I have an excellent knowledge of human nature being human after all and do not wish to even cultivate the opportunity for an eye and heart that does not see only my husband; or present any man with a similar trial to his virtue. This is not my particular weakness, but sanctity of my marriage covenant is that important to me. It is the same with my Lord. As a Christian, the only thing I am supposed to fear is separation from Him. How many of the saints have told us to flee from sin?! I hope to never be led to a place of false security where I let down my guard enough to believe that "I am now strong enough". Most of you writing and commenting are men. West is a man. God bless all of your intentions but your perspectives are skewed by that. You haven't spent your lives being pursued and cajoled and ogled over like a woman has. You haven't sat next to a man of remarkable reputation and virtue and watched him succumb to his baser desires to look or touch or speak in ways to make a woman blush. You might be surprised by how many solid Catholic men single and married struggle with control of their eyes, words and hands. Or maybe you wouldn't really be very surprised. God-fearing, Catholic men are not immune to this difficulty. They are just more ashamed afterwards than their pagan counterparts. To say that a young man would have the mature control that older men struggle to have is a difficulty. It fails to take into account an intense biological fact that has no release in the security of marriage. Protecting the virtue and purity of his beloved should be his primary goal. If this requires spending most of his precious time with her in public and semi-public places, he should not hesitate to do so. Love requires it. It is a sacrificial love that will blossom so sweetly in the grace of Marriage! These are the most comments I've ever seen under one of Steve's blogposts. No offense, Steve, but it's usually dullsville. Maybe West is the hot ticket, cause after all, Jerry Springer would drool over all of this hot action! Maybe your next book should be over the not so subtle heresies of West. I'm still trying to figure out when the theological accuracy of an argument boiled down to the "American Idol" effect in that the person with the most followers automatically wins. I like West's quote, that the opposite of love isn't hate, but USE. Given the divorce rate in this country, I'm confident that he's right about the prevalence of sexual exploitation in marriage. I'm with Johnnyjoe. I'm also perfectly fine with critiquing West. It's hard to dismiss it when someone's words or actions raise a red flag, but you're not even reading the words you quote. I'm confident that West has renounced previous errant positions. I'm satisfied with the second edition of his book. Christopher West seems to think that avoiding near occasions of sin is not virtuous activity. How do you do it? You pay to go to shows you don't sneak in or beg for a spot on your buddy the bass player's guest list unless you really, really have to , you buy some merch from the band while you're at it a T-shirt, the vinyl, some physical object that you couldn't download anyway. It's win-win: You get to experience live music and go home with a souvenir, and performers get to make some kind of pittance. Check The Stranger 's weekly music listings for more options. T he art world of Seattle, compared to other cities, is a magically open place where approximately percent of success is in showing up. You want to become a student and critic of contemporary art? Start by going to First Thursday, which happens on the night of the first Thursday of every month, mostly in Pioneer Square. Don't miss museum shows the three main museums: Want to sit around before dawn and talk about art or listen to some people who do? Go to the back room at Cafe Presse on Tuesday mornings starting at 7: To join the art world, you need precisely what you need to join every other world, and nothing more or less: I f you're not into the show, leave at intermission—or before. You've got better things to do with your life than sit through boring theater. Plus, there's no better way to ruin a fundamentally good thing sex, food, art than agonizing through one of its inferior iterations. If you must stay, for the sake of a date or something, focus on one thing: The way theatrical artifice breaks down under scrutiny can be amusing. But if it isn't ringing your bell, you should just go. Some companies and theaters to get excited about: Rigsby and His Amazing Silhouettes lewd, loopy puppetry. Most theaters have student or rush tickets for cheap. And read the reviews in The Stranger 's theater section—we'll take care of you. T he star of the Sounders, Seattle's new major-league soccer team, is Freddie Ljungberg, a Swedish underwear model who likes to lose his temper at refs and sometimes gets banned from games for it he says the refs in Europe take it better. Then there's the "other Fredy"—year-old Colombian forward Fredy Montero, whose bursts of brilliance make up for his frustrating inconsistency also: The local genius on the team is Kasey Keller, a steady, serious, unfuckwithable presence on the field, even though he's confined to the goalkeeper's box. And the guy with the best biography is Osvaldo Alonso, a Cuban defector who walked away from his Cuban team in a Wal-Mart in Texas a couple years ago and never looked back. It's a great fucking team—playing an old, simple, sexy game. For reasons no one's really figured out, the Sounders have higher average attendance at home games than any other team in American major-league soccer. They play at Qwest Field. You can get tickets at www. Wear green. W ell, here you are: We're known for, like, three things: Since you're stuck here until you graduate or burn out and get a job at Orange Julius, you might as well enjoy all the squirrels and splendor and shit. There's plenty to do adventurewise. Also, you can always swim in the lakes. You just walk down there and keep walking until the land ends and you are wet. It is amazing. Grow a beard or armpit hairs. Get a Nalgene bottle. And go to the Olympic Peninsula, where there is even a rain forest. I f you have a desire to spend time outdoors without getting too far away from your TV, laptop, and civilization, there's plenty of woodsy shit to do in-city. Seattle has, like, 19, parks, but Discovery Park in Magnolia is perhaps the best place in Seattle to take a long walk, smoke a joint, and eat a sandwich without being bothered. Green Lake is also a fine place to sit and ogle joggers. You can also rest in a big grassy field and watch or play a pickup basketball game at Green Lake's court, or rent a kayak or pedal boat and float around the lake. There's also a swing set and totally sweet merry-go-round, and sometimes some people do a thing involving dancing and rollerblading simultaneously, and you can watch this, and you will like it. Cal Anderson Park on Capitol Hill is beautiful in the summer—and there's a big concrete water-filled sculpture to splash around in—and Victor Steinbrueck Park, at the north end of the Pike Place Market, has a fantastic view of Puget Sound and is great for people-watching. It's also one of the best places in the city to buy crack and get stabbed by a hobo. If you have something against parks ass-hole! And here's another idea: For basically the price of a movie ticket, you can ride the ferry to Bainbridge Island and back. Just pay your fare, walk on, and there will be wind and water and such. Y ou may be asked to wear a pink hat! You are going to look so stupid! Just do it, because your life is about to get much, much, much better. The Land of Pink Hats and mandatorially naked ladies; the hats are required for hygiene reasons, ostensibly, but more likely the owners just want to have a laugh is Olympus Spa, with two locations: Tacoma and Lynnwood. These are Korean spas, which means they have everything a regular spa has hot tubs, cold plunges, steam saunas, dry saunas, massages , but they also have something called a body scrub. In a body scrub, a Korean lady scrubs your skin off. It is pretty great. At Banya 5, which is located more conveniently in South Lake Union, both men and women are allowed on coed days you wear a bathing suit , there are no pink hats, and the tradition is Russian. This means that in addition to the regular stuff see above , you can hire a person to smack you with giant leaves, according to custom. If you can, try not to think about being naked because it will make you less afraid of being naked. But I have this pink hat! W e are not Europe, yet. Soon we will be, but until then, drinking in public is illegal. What to do about this problem? No biggie. Just drink your booze from coffee cups, if you want to walk down the street; or drink in parks with lots of trees, if you do not want to disguise your booze. A bad park to drink in: Cal Anderson Park. There's not enough vegetation in that place; cops can see you in a minute. A good park for drinking: There are plenty of trees and bushes in that park, and cops almost never enter it. In general, you can mark the parks designed by the influential earlyth-century landscape designers the Olmsted Brothers Volunteer Park! The Olmsteds understood that a great park must afford the visitor a certain measure of privacy. U se the internet. The Sol Duc Hot Springs are a well-trod and paved and policed path full of families and nudists. And though the two camps frequently squabble in entertaining ways, both tend toward patronizing sanctimony and neither are much fun. In general, you'll want an at least 2. As for alcohol: Spring for champagne and sip, don't glug. As for drugs: Being lost and high in the woods in the dark is bad news we speak from experience. As for sex: Sadly, it's not the best idea—the thermophilic bacteria that live in hot springs are good for your outsides, but not so good for your insides. And by the time you've arranged yourself on a towel or a bed of moss and ferns, you'll probably feel pretty damn cold. Do what the spirit moves you of course! Pack it in, pack it out, etc. U nless you are some sort of Ferris Bueller—style genius of avoidance, you will read books when you are in school. Some of these books will be good. Some of these books will be very bad. But probably none of them will get you laid. And lots of the books that students typically read for fun—those enormous fantasy-novel series by obese, bearded men; Twilight ; Days of Sodom —will also definitely not help you score. So here's the thing: If you can speak Spanish, you should read Pablo Neruda's love poetry in the original. There's nothing a dewy-eyed woman won't do for you once you've broken out "Ausencia" in a whispery voice. And if you're looking to unleash epic horniness, there's nothing like couples reading to each other: Try a Richard Brautigan story or two The Abortion: A s a vegan in the U. Your dietary habits literally go against the grain of most American restaurants and food companies, making you a problematic dining companion, even in supposedly enlightened cities like Seattle. Americans and the eating establishments that cater to them largely operate under the notion that consuming meat and dairy products is normal, healthy, and ecologically sustainable until the end of time. Most vegans call bullshit on these assumptions, but it's best to do so silently—unless, of course, you enjoy ostracism. Don't preach; instead, lead by example. Who knows, you may end up converting hardcore carnivores to a lifestyle that doesn't involve oppressing animals and hastening the demise of the planet—and fattening butts to heinous dimensions. What are they into? Where do they hang out? Meanwhile—and this is key—do interesting stuff yourself. Make weird art, go to plays and shows, skinny-dip in fountains, walk across the entire city, read The Stranger. You're a person with unusual and fascinating experiences and observations, and that's hot. Now wrest control of your own mind: You are not hopelessly crushed out on this person who is so, so great—rather, you are a great, great person who would like to assess whether this person is a good fit for you for whatever purposes you've got in mind. Say, "Hi, I'm [your name here]," and ask a pertinent and ideally funny question. Be ready to talk about what you've been up to and why it's been crazy, amazing, etc. Smile and make eye contact this is not rocket science, people. Meanwhile—and this is key—let go of any hopes or expectations about the outcome. Think of this person as a possible friend, if they seem cool. It's good to test all this out on people other than your crush—people with whom you really don't care about the outcome—frequently. Are they responding well? Have a friendly invitation ready, and have fun. If at first you don't succeed, fuck it! Do not feel awkward or bad. Say hi next time you see them, and start looking for your next crush. At this rate, you're going to get laid—and make collateral friends along the way—at a nearly alarming rate. Y ou're young, hot, and smart. Now is the time to question the mores you were raised with, such as compulsory heterosexuality and religion—why not add monogamy to the mix? So what's this polyamory business? Note the sexism. Polyamory is whatever you want it to be. At the most basic level, it's a rejection of monogamy as the default; beyond that, the possibilities are endless. Want to date two people at once, without the guilt or the hiding? Want to focus on one primary relationship and leave room for occasional dabbling? Want to be your own primary relationship and casually date someone on the side? Want to date someone who's already in another relationship? Don't know what you want? Try something, check in with yourself and others, then adjust accordingly. No matter which lineup you choose, it helps to work out some agreements about safe sex, disclosure, boundaries, expectations, and time spent together. Things can get really fun really fast, not to mention really complicated. Above all, don't neglect your sanity—you don't want to be young, hot, smart A good friend is fun, reliable, and generous. Be available. Look at and listen to people when they talk. Pick up the check sometimes. Do not miss people's birthday parties. If someone asks you a question, ask them the same question back, because you care. Hug a person. Be honest with a person. Also, it's important to be able to make fun of your friends in a playful and nonhurtful way. This is what friends do. And finally: No it would not!!! Only a bad friend says that! Then make out with Steve. God, you suck. Y ou know what's awesome? Someone who gets dumped and, months later, incessantly laments the details of their breakup. Also awesome: Those people are The Worst. Here's how to avoid being one of them. Step one: Remember that being dumped is the most devastating thing that will ever happen to you. At least when people die, they say good-bye reluctantly. But this person who dumped you—that gorgeous human who you're still completely in love with—they're trying to get away from you. They don't want you. They never will again. It doesn't matter that they used to want you. It's over now. Just as certainly as gravity, it's done. You can talk to friends about your pain and weep into your mattress for a month, but then you must move on. Step two: Move on..

And here's another idea: For basically the price of a movie ticket, you can ride the ferry to Bainbridge Island and back. Just pay your just click for source, walk on, and there will be wind and water and such. Y Ure Concupiscent Arent U? may be asked to wear a pink hat! You are going to look so stupid! Just do it, because your life is about to get much, much, much better.

The Land of Pink Hats and mandatorially naked ladies; the hats are Ure Concupiscent Arent U? for hygiene reasons, ostensibly, but more likely the owners just want to have a laugh is Olympus Spa, with two Ure Concupiscent Arent U? Tacoma and Lynnwood. These are Korean spas, which means they have everything a regular spa has hot tubs, cold plunges, steam saunas, dry saunas, massagesbut they also have something called a body scrub. In a body scrub, a Korean lady scrubs your skin off.

It is pretty great. At Banya 5, which is located more conveniently in South Lake Union, both men and women are allowed on coed days you wear Ure Concupiscent Arent U? bathing suitthere are no pink hats, and the tradition is Russian. This means that in addition to the regular stuff see aboveyou can hire a person to smack you with giant leaves, according to custom. If you can, try not to think about being naked because it will make you less afraid of being naked.

But I have this pink hat! W e are not Europe, yet. Soon we will be, but until then, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? in public is illegal. What to do about this problem? No biggie. Just drink your booze Ure Concupiscent Arent U? coffee cups, if you want to walk down the street; or drink in parks with lots of trees, if Ure Concupiscent Arent U? do not want to disguise your booze. A bad park to drink in: Cal Anderson Park.

There's not enough vegetation in that place; cops can see you in a minute. A good park for drinking: There are plenty of trees and bushes in that park, and cops almost never enter it. In general, you can mark the parks designed by the influential earlyth-century landscape designers the Olmsted Brothers Volunteer Park! The Olmsteds understood that a great park must afford the visitor a certain measure of privacy.

U se the internet. The Sol Duc Hot Springs are a well-trod and paved and policed path full of families and nudists. And though the two camps frequently squabble in entertaining ways, just click for source tend toward patronizing sanctimony and neither are much fun.

In general, you'll want an at least 2. As for alcohol: Spring for champagne and sip, don't glug. As for drugs: Being lost and high in the woods in the dark is bad news we speak from experience. As for sex: Sadly, it's not the best idea—the thermophilic bacteria that live in hot springs are good for your outsides, but not so good Ure Concupiscent Arent U? your insides. And by the time you've arranged yourself on a towel or a bed of moss and ferns, you'll probably feel pretty damn cold.

Do what the spirit moves you of course! Pack it in, pack it out, etc. U nless you are some sort of Ferris Bueller—style genius of avoidance, you will read books when you are Ure Concupiscent Arent U? school. Some of these books will be good. Some of these books will be go here bad.

But probably none of them will get you laid. And lots of the books that students typically read for fun—those enormous fantasy-novel series by obese, bearded men; Twilight ; Days of Sodom —will also definitely not help you score. So here's the thing: If you can speak Spanish, you should read Pablo Neruda's love poetry in the original.

There's nothing Ure Concupiscent Arent U? dewy-eyed woman won't do for you once you've broken out "Ausencia" in a whispery voice. And if you're looking to unleash epic horniness, there's nothing like couples reading to each other: Try a Richard Brautigan story or two The Abortion: A s a vegan in the U. Your dietary habits Ure Concupiscent Arent U? go against the grain of most American restaurants and food companies, making you a problematic dining companion, even in supposedly enlightened cities like Seattle.

Americans and the eating establishments that cater to them largely operate under the notion that consuming meat and dairy products is normal, healthy, and ecologically sustainable until the end of time.

Most vegans call bullshit on these assumptions, but it's best to do so silently—unless, of course, you enjoy ostracism. Ure Concupiscent Arent U? preach; instead, lead by example. Who knows, you may end up converting hardcore carnivores to a lifestyle that doesn't involve oppressing animals and hastening the demise of the planet—and fattening butts to heinous dimensions. What are they into? Where do they hang out? Meanwhile—and this is Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

interesting stuff yourself. Make weird art, go to plays and shows, skinny-dip in fountains, walk across the entire city, read The Stranger. You're a person with Ure Concupiscent Arent U? and Ure Concupiscent Arent U? experiences and observations, and that's hot.

Now wrest control of your own mind: Lesbian chicks ready for gangbang. Steve, I have followed your writings for many years, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? have many of your books, but my Ure Concupiscent Arent U?, you have jumped off into the deep end of the pool and are floundering. You Ure Concupiscent Arent U? out suspicion and innuendo where there is none to be found, and you are rapidly loosing all credibility - for what appears to be professional jealousy. Christopher West is not the demon you relish in making him out to be; and you should spend some serious time in front of the Blessed Sacrament praying for the peace of heart that will keep you from continuing to spread this calumny.

Johnyjoe, It ain't just me that say this. I've had bishops tell me quietly that they will never have Chris West in their dioceses because they don't trust him. His own instructors have renounced him. Most of the Ure Concupiscent Arent U? I know have serious concerns about him. The number of serious theologians I know of who support him can be counted on the fingers of two hands. The only people who are not in on the secret is the general public. West's words copied here alone are enough to turn my stomach.

At this point anyone who still defends him at all is a dimwit. I said it. Thank you, Steve, for the thoughtful commentary. You shed sane light on what is becoming a frightful cult in itself.

Chris said: Now, is it read article to have sex with my own wife in a lustful Ure Concupiscent Arent U? But the very fact that the couple has worked hard to avoid a near Ure Concupiscent Arent U? of sin prior to their marriage means that they click trying to avoid precisely this sin of lust.

As a result, it would be not only wrong, but actually perverse, to impute lust to them on the basis that they tried to avoid sin prior to marriage. Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

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If the couple does not enter the sexual act with the right grace-filled mindset, they risk simply giving into lust as husband and wife, rather than having, for lack of a better phrase, "holy sex". It's not guaranteed either way that they will act in purity or in lustfulness. Chris is trying to get people to realize to guard against lust, that it is not simply something that affects people outside of marriage and is nullified by the marital bond.

Just my take on the Ure Concupiscent Arent U?. I'm not one to suggest that dating couples should, say, vacation together alone. But for heavens sake, spending NO time alone together? That's crazy talk.

If spending no time alone together is the only way for you to avoid fornication, then frankly neither of you should be courting Ure Concupiscent Arent U? the first place. If you really can't control yourself, you can't make a marriage vow with a reasonable expectation of being faithful to your spouse. Jeffrey, I don't dispute that this may have been his point. The problem is, assuming that is what he meant, he Ure Concupiscent Arent U? it in such a confused way that he invites heretical misunderstandings amongst his listeners.

He explicitly said that avoidance of sin is not a virtue. He may have meant something entirely different, but his words are heretical. He explicitly denied that anything important took place on the day vows were exchanged. He may have meant something entirely orthodox, but his words are heretical.

The Catholic Faith is careful about how She words things precisely because this kind of mis-wording leads to enormous spiritual problems down the road for everyone involved. Chris is not careful, he is not orthodox in his phrasing. It isn't a question of "prudery. Kevin, The concept of the chaperone has ancient usage in the Church.

The idea that couples should spend significant amounts of time alone is no older than the automobile. Especially given the fruits we have reaped from it? Ure Concupiscent Arent U? use contrition as an analogy, he over-emphasizes "perfect Ure Concupiscent Arent U? to the point of making "imperfect contrition" seem Ure Concupiscent Arent U? nothing. If Ure Concupiscent Arent U? could not be alone together the day before you got married and not sin, there is Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

magic trick, there is no waving at the wand at the altar, that suddenly makes your sexual behavior beautiful, true, good, lovely, and pure. He has done nothing of the sort. He simply said that the act of exchanging vows -- yes, the sacrament of Holy Matrimony -- does not, in and of itself, extinguish lust in Ure Concupiscent Arent U? man and woman. Steve, I note with interest that your response to my pointing out that you are practicing calumny - a sin - is to say "I'm not the only one doing it!

Your logic is so faulty that for me to dissect it properly would stuff your Ure Concupiscent Arent U? box, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? let me Ure Concupiscent Arent U? you with this thought. Christopher West is calling couples to a radical change of heart. To go deep into their fears and suppositions about human sexuality and be transformed by the gospel and JPII's deep reflection on same.

You don't like the way he presents the material, and from that you spread calumny about him as a person. It's flat wrong, and you should stop it. Jeff, I'm glad you recognize the problem in his description of avoiding near occasions of sin. The Church recognizes that a man and a woman marry in part because they feel a strong physical attraction for one another. Well-formed Catholics know this is possible.

Thus, the statement "If you could not be alone together the day before you got married and not sin, there is no Ure Concupiscent Arent U? trick, there is Ure Concupiscent Arent U? waving at Ure Concupiscent Arent U? wand at the altar, that suddenly makes your sexual behavior beautiful, true, good, lovely, and pure" is simply false. The overwhelming physical attraction that can lead to sex and sin the day before can and will lead Ure Concupiscent Arent U? sex and virtue the day after.

The marriage vows effect a REAL change in the substance of the man and the woman. West makes fun of them. That's profaning the sacred. Johnnyjoe, I note with interest that Cardinal Rigali's response to Dr. Click pointing out that West is practicing profanation - a sin - is to say "I'm not the only one praising him! BTW, I like that whole "poisoning the well" bit where you say there are so many errors you can't fit them in the combox.

You remind me of the Healy combo, the "philosophers" who couldn't even defend themselves, much less each other. They liked to pull the same trick. In fact, your comments are so inane that I strongly suspect you're just one of the Healy's playing at being a man. Go troll somewhere else, fishboy. Steve, I agree with Johnnyjoe.

I have gained much from your work especially Designed to Failhowever, I have tracked your coverage of Christopher West and it is really sad and a black mark on your career. Perhaps it is professional jealousy, however, Ure Concupiscent Arent U? sense that it is a personal vendetta that you are waging against Christopher West. When was the last time you Ure Concupiscent Arent U? a personal conversation with Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

Tell us about it. Was it cordial, did you argue with him? Did you find joy and fraternity with someone else who is fighting the good fight? I suspect that you started an argument with him and he said something that stung you and you have yet to forgive. This is the context that makes your actions make sense. Otherwise, the only other explanation is that you are simply a crank, which I don't think is the case.

What is apparent is that your attacks on West are personal, unbalanced and interpret West's comments with an acidic eye that ignores the obvious meaning of his words in favor of the most bizarre reading. The Ure Concupiscent Arent U? that "bishops" confide in you that they won't allow West into their diocese is proof of nothing as your own reporting on Rigali's statement gives evidence.

The reality is, Rigali has the ecclesial authority over West's apostolate and he has given approbation. Rigali is the competent authority here, not you, and not "some bishops. The point that West is Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

in the quote is that the interiority of the couple is what is most important, not simply the conformity to rules on dating before marriage. One may conform to the rules of not being alone togetherbut not have an interior transformation and this can be disastrous for the marriage.

Purity, chastity and modesty are interior qualities developed through the grace of God. If you don't have them, marriage will not give them to you by some act of magic. This link his central point by any fair reading.

He click here NOT saying that the near avoidance of sin is never a virtuous act. He is NOT rejecting the grace of the sacrament of marriage. He is pointing out the necessity Ure Concupiscent Arent U? developing an interiority, through God's grace, that does not desire to lust. That is the point. You read him unfairly and your anger blinds you Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

the wackiness of your claims that he has a cult background that has impaired his work. Steve, I have to level with you. As someone who organizes Catholic speakers to come to a major Archdiocese, I have recommended your work to many people.

However, I would be very very reluctant to invite you to come and speak because of your acidic tone, and your crusade against West speaks of there being something not right with you. Have your speaking Ure Concupiscent Arent U?

been growing or contracting Steve? Where is the peace, the charity and joy? Steve, you are a very intelligent man who has studied the truth. However, what good is knowledge of the truth if you have no love? I pray that my comments might open your conscience, rather than empty your spleen. I'd like for you to name the Bishops who Ure Concupiscent Arent U? claim would not have him in their diocese.

If you KNOW this, reveal it. You haven't held anything else back and you certainly don't have respect for the Princes of the Church, so why not? Woodstock 99 video of nude girls.

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