Is it a sin to watch gruesome violent footage?


#1

Is it a sin or disgrace to God at all to view material such as excecutions (such as beheadings and shootings) and violent war videos and images?

I didn’t think so at first, but after thinking about it for just a while you’d just wonder whether God approves of us seeing horrible things like this or not.


#2

i think it depends on the circumstances. if it was in a movie or a television show, i would say that it is definitly worng. But if you are watching something about history, etc. for the most part i would say that is fine. But you have to draw the line.


#3

I guess it depends on why you are watching the footage.
if you watch it with sympathy in mind, it shouldn’t be sinful. but if you’re filled with morbid desire then it is.
my classmates often watch the 911 video for fun and cheer all the way. that’s a good example of sinning


#4

The Bible itself is pretty gruesome and violent.

Especially the battles in the Old testament.
Hey what happened to Jesus was gruesome and violent the crucifixion. Hey that was one of the criticisms of the passion.
The Pope watched Schilnder’s list and praised it that was a rated R film that was gruesome and violent.
Mary gave some very gruesome and violent visions to the children at Fatima now that is something we don’t seem to recognize that children were shown violence to be taught a point. Heck civilization is violent and gruesome just watch the news. I think the line can be drawn if you start becoming a sadist and exactly enjoy the violence instead of being affected by the violence. A spirtual advisor can help you if you have a sadist tendancy.
Heck the Lord of the Rings series applauded by many catholics was an extremely violent mythology but it held some very valauble moral lessons.


#5

I watch footage from the war in Iraq, both graphic and not graphic. I don’t think it is a sin at all to watch violent footage unless it’s for the wrong reason. If you watch people being killed on our side and feel pity towards them, it’s probably not *wrong *at all.


#6

It could be.


#7

talking about violence, no sin in watching the cartoon “Tom and Jerry”


#8

[quote=Sweetcakes]It could be.
[/quote]

Why do you think it could be?


#9

I think it’s the intention, too. Watching a documentary on the Holocaust means you’ve gotta see the shocking images. The images are supposed to shock you. OTOH, there is also morbid curiosity and I think I try to avoid that. I don’t need to see somebody being beheaded in Iraq and so I won’t seek out the clips. I know someone who did and he said he really regretted it.

The Passion of the Christ is purposely gruesome because it is intended to arouse a certain emotional response. It’s OK to purposely use this if the intended response is OK, but you can be sure some people will watch it for the sheer thrill of it.

Sometimes, I think I “get off” on watching horrible things like holocaust footage and that shames me. No, I don’t mean I cheer when Jews are killed - I mean that I simply get off in some way on the visceral reaction to it.

I remember St. Augustine talked about the possible negative effects the circus could have on people. Aside from the fact that it was simply cheap, idle entertainment that distracted one from what they should be attending to, he also knew that it could really warp a person’s mind. His best friend was dragged to the circus once and he wasn’t able to resist looking… after that, he was unable to look away and he became addicted to the violent spectacle.


#10

[quote=katybird]I think it’s the intention, too. Watching a documentary on the Holocaust means you’ve gotta see the shocking images. The images are supposed to shock you. OTOH, there is also morbid curiosity and I think I try to avoid that. I don’t need to see somebody being beheaded in Iraq and so I won’t seek out the clips. I know someone who did and he said he really regretted it.

The Passion of the Christ is purposely gruesome because it is intended to arouse a certain emotional response. It’s OK to purposely use this if the intended response is OK, but you can be sure some people will watch it for the sheer thrill of it.

Sometimes, I think I “get off” on watching horrible things like holocaust footage and that shames me. No, I don’t mean I cheer when Jews are killed - I mean that I simply get off in some way on the visceral reaction to it.

I remember St. Augustine talked about the possible negative effects the circus could have on people. Aside from the fact that it was simply cheap, idle entertainment that distracted one from what they should be attending to, he also knew that it could really warp a person’s mind. His best friend was dragged to the circus once and he wasn’t able to resist looking… after that, he was unable to look away and he became addicted to the violent spectacle.
[/quote]

That reminds me Saint Augustine hated theatre and actors he recommended Actors quit their profession before converting. I think Augustine went a little to far on secular issues fortunately these are only his opinions and not church teaching if you are a member of the circus or an actor please feel free to join the church. Heck John Paul 2 was an actor before he entered the priesthood and our most high profile lay catholics Mel Gibson and Jim Cavaziel are actors.


#11

As with a lot of things, I think it is the intention of the person watching the video.

Someone mentioned their classmates cheering to a 9/11 video, that is a sin. Yet did millions of Americans sin while watching their TV’s that morning?? Nope.


#12

Do you watch it because you relish brutality and carnage? Or do you watch it because you are merely curious? Circumstances and intent, rather than the actual act of watching, are the more important factors that could lead to sin.

Gerry :slight_smile:


#13

[quote=Maccabees]That reminds me Saint Augustine hated theatre and actors he recommended Actors quit their profession before converting. I think Augustine went a little to far on secular issues fortunately these are only his opinions and not church teaching if you are a member of the circus or an actor please feel free to join the church. Heck John Paul 2 was an actor before he entered the priesthood and our most high profile lay catholics Mel Gibson and Jim Cavaziel are actors.
[/quote]

As for circuses… these were not Barnum and Bailey things - they involved people (slaves, criminals, etc) being killed by gladiators and wild animals. There were all sorts of spectacles put on, but the crowd wanted bloodshed the most and that’s what they got.


#14

If your conscience says so.


#15

[quote=abcdefg]my classmates often watch the 911 video for fun and cheer all the way. that’s a good example of sinning
[/quote]

That’s just sick. My gosh, are they so removed from reality that they think it’s a movie or video game? :mad:


#16

[quote=katybird]As for circuses… these were not Barnum and Bailey things - they involved people (slaves, criminals, etc) being killed by gladiators and wild animals. There were all sorts of spectacles put on, but the crowd wanted bloodshed the most and that’s what they got.
[/quote]

Point taken thus the inclusion of gladiators, charioteers, and actors were not admitted to baptsim according to Augustine unless they abandoned their former way of life. However that still doesn’t explain the actors thing here. Actors performed at the theatre and not the circus. Perhaps he went a little overboard. Like I said John Paul 2 was an actor he turned out alright.


#17

Actors and actresses were also quite commonly prostitutes.


#18

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