Dear Father Angelo,
I am always the boy for a new start, and I have solved the problem with the music I listen to. I have understood that evil does not reside in music, music is only an instrument of rebellion and a show. I don’t let myself be swayed.
My doubts are about sexuality.
Is it really that serious to practice masturbation/self-eroticism?
In my opinion it is a need of the body, the same as feeding oneself or sleeping, why is there so much fuss around this topic on the part of the Church?
Jesus himself in the Gospel never speaks of chastity but leaves us only two commandments:
Love your God
Love your neighbor as yourself.
He doesn’t specifically talk about sexuality, so why is masturbation considered a serious sin?
Why are premarital relationships also seen from this particular point of view?
I wait for your answer.
1. You tell me that practicing masturbation is a need of the body like nourishment or sleep.
I had just read your statement when I read the news on a newspaper blog: “a man arrested, who masturbated in front of a little girl”.
I said to myself: according to that visitor of ours, isn’t masturbation the same thing as eating or sleeping?
How come people who eat or drink on the train, on the bus… are not arrested?
2. As you can see, it is useless to hide under the pretext that it is natural.
It is so natural that children never tell their parents about it. But instinctively they are ashamed.
They struggle to say it even in confession. Yet if it were so natural … there would be no such fears.
3. So let’s get to the reason why talking about certain sexual problems is not the most natural thing in this world.
John Paul II says that sexuality touches the intimate core of the person.
Also for this reason in common language we speak of intimate parts of the body that are not shown to everyone.
The animals show them because for them, everything is there. These are almost physiological functions.
The human person, on the other hand, is not all contained there. Indeed, he is all elsewhere, namely in the mind and heart.
And in those parts that for animals have simply physiological functions, in the person have instead something very high contained within them.
They even hide the secret of a heart, the will to give oneself forever and exclusively to a specific person. The will to expropriate oneself in order to belong to another.
4. At this point we understand why we are arrested for public impurity: because something very great is profaned.
So much more it is profane when it is done in front of a child, with the serious danger of destroying his innocent and clean world, of introducing vulgarity into a reality that is sacred in another context, such as in the environment of a marriage that is open to life.
5. But there is more, because the inner meaning of human sexuality is to open a person to the gift of oneself. A gift that is so great that it commits us to the mindset of giving for a lifetime.
So it happens for parents towards their children.
Masturbation, on the other hand, is the use of the sexual faculty, that is, the faculty that God has linked to the gift of self, to seek empty pleasure.
Bad enough if it were just empty. But we are talking of a pleasure that triggers an addiction that is difficult to get out of.
6. For how many children and also for how many adults masturbation and pornography walk together.
Two slaveries that in some seem to leave no way out.
They feel the emptiness of it, they feel disgusting, they are led to have more and more hunger and thirst for impurities as if they wanted to look for something that finally satisfies them definitively, but they never find it.
They want to get out of it, because they feel it is hell, a garbage dump carried in the depths of their hearts.
But they are slaves to it. They can’t.
Sometimes they ask for the help of a psychologist (for a fee, of course). Initially they feel a bit of relief, but soon everything comes back to the beginning.
7. He who tells you this is a priest, who listens to the suffering of those who come to confess these things, to feel freed from them, to have a mind and heart full of other things and to be able to fly high.
In a word: he comes to confession to be reborn, to begin a new life, interiorly free.
8. I happened to read some expressions of Father Andrea Gasparino, who was a strong guide and father in spirit for many young people.
Here’s what he said about masturbation:
“Masturbation is a drug.
Remember one thing: you can’t go to marriage with this vice on you, indeed, you can’t get engaged with this slavery: it would affect your relationship from the first moment.
Those who have the habit of masturbation carry a heavy load of weakness within them, which shatters all ideals. Whoever has this vice is not capable of great ideals.
But you can get out of this vice if you fight. One comes out of masturbation with the strength of Christ, and with a disciplined struggle.
We must hurry immediately to point out that the vice of masturbation stops and is eradicated when you want it.
If you have a habit of smoking, they say it is terrible to quit; the habit of masturbation is easier to deal with.
Christ commands you: He wants you to banish all disorders: «If your eye scandalizes you, tear it out! If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off! ».
This drastic language of Christ you must apply to every sexual disorder.
Christ calls you to a harmonious life. Therefore, if you fight and Christ is with you, it is impossible for you not to win.
What to do? Here is a good recipe, well-proven by a long experience.
• Utter frankness: you need absolute frankness with yourself, and with a priest. Choose a priest to open up to, write a written report on the severity of your vice, then go to him regularly. Your candor and the strength of the sacrament of forgiveness will work wonders.
• Be honest not to feed the fire of sensuality in you: protect yourself from sexualised spectacles, thoughts, fantasies, speeches, reading material.
If you grant your eyes everything they ask for, if you linger on impure fantasies, you understand that you are weak, that the will is more and more fragile. If a sick person is exposed to draughts, it is understood that he gets sick.
• Don’t waste time whining, fix it, do it now. At every feast of Mary Most Holy, ask for the miracle of healing.
Mary’s intercession, and your desire to fight, will sooner or later work the miracle.
• Promptly repair any fall, throwing yourself into some generous act of charity.
Masturbation is selfishness in its purest state, so the infallible medicine is charity. We win with charity.
Remember: God wants us to be free and mature, masturbation makes slaves and children”.
9. Father Gasparino writes again, answering the question: “«Masturbation does no harm to anyone; why does the Church condemn it? ».
It is not the Church that condemns it, it is Jesus Christ himself.
And he condemns it because masturbation is the grave of your freedom. It is pure selfishness.
The most serious evil of masturbation is that it affects your personality: those who have the habit of masturbation hardly grow in love. It is a virus that affects the will. It is a disorder that Christ condemns.
This evil always risks becoming a habit, and the habit gradually creates a selfish mentality that eats up your personality.
If a young man turns a blind eye to this evil, he becomes so deeply selfish as to negatively mark his entire existence.
As I have already explained, you have to fight against masturbation, with serenity, but also with seriousness. Man can win any battle when he really wants to.
The Christian then has the strength of Christ on his side”.
10. How many things could still be added, taking them from the experience of those who are enslaved to it.
Many visitor emails published on our site, and many responses, document it well.
With the wish to always be interiorly free, able to fly high and always be united with God (it is the most beautiful thing in life, ever!) I assure you of my prayers and I bless you.Father Angelo