Are We All Sexual Perverts?

Bernard Toutounji

Bernard Toutounji

Bernard Toutounji is an Australian Catholic writer and speaker. He writes a fortnightly column called Foolish Wisdom ( which examines afresh issues within news, culture or faith. One of Bernard’s favourite quotes comes from Edith Stein who said "All those who seek truth seek God whether this is clear to them or not". Bernard is married to Jane and they have two daughters.

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9 thoughts on “Are We All Sexual Perverts?”

  1. Great article. Coming from a very prudish Protestant background, I’m still constantly amazed at the realism of the Church. She never cringes at our brokenness…just gently offers the healing compassion of Christ.

  2. Excellent piece. To identify sexual tendencies, interests or practices seeks validation or approval but achieves a locked identification based on the particular sexual content. How sad and hopeless – and nearly cruel – to reduce and lock people to their sexual appetites rather than lift and free them as the Christian concept of person does. Thank you for this perspective.

  3. This is the natural conclusion to relativism played out in human sexuality. I was recently telling a youth that we aren’t far from people protesting that they have a right to marry their pets.

  4. Pingback: Bishop Richard Williamson SSPX Sexual Perverts Abortion | Big Pulpit

  5. What lots of people are missing is a dive course in Theology of the Body, so they can discover once again the beauty of what we are as human beings.

  6. “… but the philosophically grounded ideas found in Catholicism understand much of what he was saying.”

    Do you mean “underscored”?
    You’re welcome!

  7. Hi,

    “Bering admits that he does not like to use the language of ‘evil’ or ‘immoral’ and rightly so, for without God as a standard of morality, right and wrong is only anchored in the arbitrary currents of man-made laws.”

    I take issue with this claim made by both you an Bering. By a standard of morality, I take it to mean that moral terms like ‘right’ has meaning external to humans. A meaning anchored in or by God. Thus, if something is right on this account, it is so because of some relationship it has to God. But, as Socrates asked, is this thing in question, let’s call it dabbling; is dabbling right because God dictates it is right or is it right independently of God and God, being omniscient, recognizes it is right?

    If dabbling is right because God dictates it is so, what does that mean about the meaning of ‘right’? Well, it means that ‘right’ can at most mean that ‘God wills it’. Most monotheists have no problem with this. Unfortunately, it sort of entails that God cannot be moral; God is amoral; above morality; beyond good and evil, to steal Nietzsche’s phrase. Further, it puts us in a position analogous to the individual trying to figure out what the absolute monarch wants done without the sovereign available to answer questions, save with a few documents he left behind and the mysterious spirit of his words (this is my attempt to write the Holy Spirit into the analogy, not saying it is terribly successful). This seems to get us into the trouble of deciding whose interpretation of the monarch’s document is right and how are we to know. If the document says this guy or these guys are in charge, what happens when they die? Apostolic succession is nowhere written in the document. That’s an addendum written by those who gain from the addendum. Suspicious.

    On the other hand, to suppose that God merely recognizes that dabbling is right, is to give up the game. Presumably, God recognizes that dabbling is right because of some fact about dabbling. If it is something that we cannot come to know, in principle, then this case reduces to the other case. If we can, in theory, come to know the reason God recognized dabbling is right, then we can come to this recognition. Thus, morality can be anchored in something logically distinct from God.

    So, I conclude that if God anchors morality, then either I can discover what God discovered by some means or I have to interpret what God has given us always being suspicious of all interpretations, including my own.

    You have objections?

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