Masturbation and an observation in animals


I know what the church teaches about masturbation being wrong and celibacy being the way to go but watching my sister’s dog made me wonder. He was evidently in the mood and gets on her bed and has his way with her pillow :tsktsk: well something happened and he could barely move and was in pain. I don’t know if this was because of some kind of tissue congestion or what. But if someone had to relieve themselves rather than commit fornication or such would masturbation be the lesser sin or should I say grave matter ? Any way in some ways we are still creatures.


Animals also sniff each others’ butts and devour their babies in certain circumstances. I wouldn’t worry too much about what they do or don’t do.

There is no rulebook that says masturbation is automatically more or less grave than fornication. Common sense tells us that masturbation/pornography/alcoholism are a trio of highly habitual sins because they lack any need for us to be pro-active about committing them. You don’t need to go outside and find another person to masturbate with. You cannot use a desire to fornicate as an excuse, and it is actually self-defeating logic, because it is the nature of sin that it has an appetite whose potential is infinite (just as the potential of holiness is infinite). When you commit sin, it becomes slightly easier to do the next time. When you act in holiness, it becomes slightly easier to do the next time. Trying to alleviate your temptation by giving into them is like trying to satisfy the appetite of a house fire by letting it spread to the next room. Don’t do that. You grab an AK-47 and draw the line at ground zero and say 'Yes" to Christ on each and every occasion. If you fall, God will pick you back up.


Thanks but in my example concerning the dog; it wasn’t something he did rather than a result of something. A physiologic response. Something there was no power over. But I guess you are right anyway.


There is never any situation in which these are the only two choices.


Sin is sin.


There are sins unto death that kill the soul. And sins that don’t quite destroy our connection.


I think what you are asking is if the sexual urge in some people can be so strong as to overcome reason and self-control - much like the degree of hunger experienced by some obese people.

Well, if we accept that many obese people are not in fact intentionally glutinous then yes you have a point.

But then, if lack of self control is the cause of such solipsistic sexual release then the disorder is not fully culpable and therefore possibly venial.

In extreme cases it may not be even venial and may not even, strictly speaking, be called masturbation (at least not the Church’s moral definition).


Somebody never has to masturbate rather than commit fornication.

Masturbation is an objectively grave sin.

In addition, examples using animals are the worse kinds. Animals rape, kill, and eat each other.


I know what you mean, but animals cannot really rape, kill and cannibalise in the same way humans can choose to so do.

And if human’s ever did act in exactly the same way animals do as you describe above they would not be culpable. It would of course still be disordered, but it would not be sinful.
Which is probably why you rightly object to judging what is good for humans from what is good for animals.

However I think the poster does have a point in so far as the animal kingdom can identify basic instinctual, pre-conscious or even biological imperatives that operate in humans. And different people obviously have a wide range of constitutional “set-points” that are not totally “learnt” by habit/upbringing/culture.


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