We continue with the third installment of our seven part series on the seven deadly sins. Today we discuss Lust.
Lust causes you to objectify the “object” of your desires, rather than seeing the individual as a human being, deserving dignity. When you disregard human dignity, it becomes very easy to lose respect for others and for yourself.
Lust is disordered desire for, or inordinate enjoyment of, sexual pleasure. Sexual pleasure is morally disordered when sought for itself, isolated from its procreative and unitive purposes. 1
Lustful behavior is addictive, deluding the person into believing that it satisfies their sexual desires. Yet, in all reality, lust never satisfies. Lust only enslaves. Once a person goes down the path of objectifying others to temporarily satisfy carnal behavior, the base sexual desires take over. Therefore, the person becomes addicted. A good example of this enslaved behavior would be viewing pornography.
How Does One Break Free from the Chains of Lust?
As with any addiction, acknowledgement of the addiction is the first step. Next, one needs to acknowledge that every person deserves to be treated with dignity, including oneself! What comes next may be the most difficult step to accomplish: Seeking help. Many people can admit to themselves that they have a problem, but letting others in on their dark secret can present an obstacle too great to surmount. Counseling may be necessary. Keep in mind that God did not place us on this earth to fight battles on our own. He gave us to each other. Counselors and priests, pastors and preachers, are trained to help.
Make things right with God by seeking the sacrament of Reconciliation. Receive the graces necessary to resist falling back into bad habits. Pray for the grace to receive the virtues of Respect (for yourself and others), Fortitude, Perseverance, Chastity, Self-Control and Temperance. These virtues will guard you and guide you to a healthier and happier life.
1 Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition. Vaticana: Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Print, 1997. n. 2351