Is Lust Purely Sexual?

Is lust purely a sexual sin? Or can it be applied to other strong obsessive desires?

For example, say a person has a strong desire to be right at all costs, and will use any trick she can think of to be right.

Could that be considered lust/ And is it a sin to have such a strong desire to be right all the time/

CCC 2534: The tenth commandment unfolds and completes the ninth, which is concerned with concupiscence of the flesh. It forbids coveting the goods of another, as the root of theft, robbery, and fraud, which the seventh commandment forbids. “Lust of the eyes” leads to the violence and injustice forbidden by the fifth commandment. Avarice, like fornication, originates in the idolatry prohibited by the first three prescriptions of the Law. The tenth commandment concerns the intentions of the heart; with the ninth, it summarizes all the precepts of the Law.

There you have it. It isn’t just sexual. One can also lust for power, money, food, and any number of other things.

The desire to be right all the time sounds more like a problem with pride than lust, IMHO. That sort of behavior often stems from deep-seated insecurity and self-esteem issues, but that doesn’t make it any less-annoying to others who have to endure the person’s sometimes-ridiculous attempts to prove themselves to be right when they are obviously wrong about something. I think it’s more of a shortcoming in character than an actual sin, though, unless they cross over into lying and manipulating others just to appear to be “right” all the time. If you are having a hard time with someone like that in your life right now, pray for them and try to be patient with them. I know that’s not always easy – my desk-mate at work is one of those types, and she drives me nuts sometimes!

While I cannot find a specific example in the CCC (because my paper copy is not with me and I can’t find anything on line), doing anything in your power to be right wouldn’t be keeping with the idea of charity. Hopefully someone else can find a specific topic in the CCC for you.

I encourage you to pray when this feeling come on. I hope that would lead you to realize that being right really doesn’t matter.

God bless,

CCC 2351 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.

What you described is not lust, but is pride.
Prayers & blessings
Deacon Ed B

No, lust is only sexual. What you mentioned OP falls under other sins.

There is nothing wrong with thirsting for righteousness, so in that sense there is nothing wrong with wanting to “always be right”, per se. Holding on to the insistence that one must always be recognized by others to be right, however, will probably eventually violate charity, patience, kindness, or humility, or a combination of these, depending on the motive. It is a bad habit, at the very least, if not a vice in and of itself.

You might be obnoxious about exerting your position as correct because you are greedy for authority over others, because you are impatient with those who are slower than you are, because you envy the recognition someone else gets that you have not gotten, or because you want to be thought of as better than someone else. The need to be beyond criticism might also betray a lack of faith in God’s forgiveness or a desire to evade correction.

I don’t know why you’d want to classify this as “lust”, though? If you know someone who wants to confess this, confessing the need to be right all the time as “lust” will give your confessor the entirely wrong idea. It’s a bad idea to use classifications of sin that in any way obscure sins we are trying to confess. It is like self-diagnosing instead of giving a good medical history. Tell what you do that is wrong: "In discussions, I always have to be right. I can’t allow anyone who disagrees with me go unchallenged. If I did, it would…(make me explode, make me look bad, lose me my leadership position, give lazy thinkers too much credit…)

Confessions are not therapy sessions, but when in any doubt, let the “doctor” do the diagnosing as to what your sin is. That way, the medicine is more likely to speak directly to your illness.

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