Not tempted by immodesty/don't see it as a problem


Granted, I’m a man, and young and unmarried to boot. But when fellow Catholics start talking about how immodesty is a grave sin, I sort of end up scratching my head. I don’t feel necessarily tempted by it. For example, I work at UPS with a girl about my age who wears sleeveless tees and Daisy Dukes. I don’t feel tempted when working with her. Plus, it’s a hot, blue-collar environment where appearances count for little, and you need to be able to move and stay cool.

Similarly, I see Catholics saying that “leggings aren’t pants”, and yet I know quite a few women who wear them. Still, it’s not a near-occasion of sin for me.

I don’t doubt that many see it as an occasion of lust, but I honestly don’t. In fact, I hardly notice what other people wear at all. Do I just have more self-control than the average man (not to brag)? Is it an idiosyncratic lack of perception? Or does modesty have different applications for different people and cultures (not to endorse relativism)?


What do you think of the SI swimsuit edition. I guess it is all relative…


By the grace of God, I am not tempted by alcohol. A lot of men are drinkers - heavy drinkers

On the other hand, many men are tempted by attractive women. It’s a big problem… But some choose to ignore it or have this ridiculous idea that once they become an “adult,” they can watch porn. And masturbation? That’s brought up here all the time. What’s so bad about it? Or, why is it so bad? It’s sin - all of it.

Here. We primarily talk about Western culture. Stay away from public beaches where teenage girls are running around in underwear or less.



Certainly, the purpose, function, and context of clothing is important.

eg swimmers are appropriate at the beach, not in a restaurant. Yoga pants are appropriate at the gym, not while working in an office. Etc.

Whether or not it is a near occasion for you, you seem to recognise that it is a near occasion for others. Thus, can’t you appreciate that protecting standards of modesty serves a broader purpose than merely how it directly affects you?

You are correct though that there are some relativities; eg as I addressed above regarding function and context. Culture is another important aspect. As is climate, which relates fairly directly to how different cultural groups tend to dress - the closer to the equator, the warmer the climate, the less clothing people will wear.

But these relative differences do not negate the need for modesty. People who are respectful will dress appropriately for a given context, and try to avoid potentially being a stumbling block for others.


I, as a nurse (also unmarried, etc), actually have to see naked people with a higher frequency than most. Not only see, but also touch them. I do not sin, as I am not tempted by them. This is how I feel in those situations.

Modesty, however, is not about how I feel, but about how I make **others **feel. By dressing immodestly, I may put others in a situation of temptation. Perhaps not you, or other nurses, but eventually someone.

I’d agree that it is something like “different application” or “different opinion” of what is modesty, depending on culture: some indigenous Brazilian tribes live practically naked, so it is not nakedness that will tempt them, while in some cultures men are tempted by seeing shoulder skin.

In both cases, however, modesty is still valuable. The indigenous woman has to behave herself, in order not to tempt other men; the woman in the other culture has to behave herself, in order not to tempt other men. (and the same applies to men in regards to tempting women!)

Just because I am not fazed by a naked body doesn’t make it ok for a man to insinuate or act in a way that might tempt me - I still require of him, despite his naked state, to behave modestly out of respect for me :thumbsup:

I’d imagine that the same goes for you. You may not be tempted by what tempts other men, but there might still be something that affects you. Ergo, others should maintain their modesty out of respect for you!



2521 Purity requires modesty, an integral part of temperance. Modesty protects the intimate center of the person. It means refusing to unveil what should remain hidden. It is ordered to chastity to whose sensitivity it bears witness. It guides how one looks at others and behaves toward them in conformity with the dignity of persons and their solidarity.

2522 Modesty protects the mystery of persons and their love. It encourages patience and moderation in loving relationships; it requires that the conditions for the definitive giving and commitment of man and woman to one another be fulfilled. Modesty is decency. It inspires one’s choice of clothing. It keeps silence or reserve where there is evident risk of unhealthy curiosity. It is discreet.

2523 There is a modesty of the feelings as well as of the body. It protests, for example, against the voyeuristic explorations of the human body in certain advertisements, or against the solicitations of certain media that go too far in the exhibition of intimate things. Modesty inspires a way of life which makes it possible to resist the allurements of fashion and the pressures of prevailing ideologies.

2524 The forms taken by modesty vary from one culture to another. Everywhere, however, modesty exists as an intuition of the spiritual dignity proper to man. It is born with the awakening consciousness of being a subject. Teaching modesty to children and adolescents means awakening in them respect for the human person.

2525 Christian purity requires a purification of the social climate. It requires of the communications media that their presentations show concern for respect and restraint. Purity of heart brings freedom from widespread eroticism and avoids entertainment inclined to voyeurism and illusion.

2526 So called moral permissiveness rests on an erroneous conception of human freedom; the necessary precondition for the development of true freedom is to let oneself be educated in the moral law. Those in charge of education can reasonably be expected to give young people instruction respectful of the truth, the qualities of the heart, and the moral and spiritual dignity of man.

2527 "The Good News of Christ continually renews the life and culture of fallen man; it combats and removes the error and evil which flow from the ever-present attraction of sin. It never ceases to purify and elevate the morality of peoples. It takes the spiritual qualities and endowments of every age and nation, and with supernatural riches it causes them to blossom, as it were, from within; it fortifies, completes, and restores them in Christ."316


I thought it was Chesterton-- perhaps it was Sayers— but I read a little snippet that stuck with me. Not all people are susceptible to all sins. Someone who isn’t tempted by lust might be very susceptible to sloth. Someone who isn’t susceptible to envy might be very susceptible to gluttony. Someone who isn’t susceptible to greed might have a short fuse.

We give thanks to God that we have the grace to not be tempted by X, but we also have the humility to recognize that our personal danger lays in Y.


Modesty, like the law, is not created on behalf of individuals, but of the general good.

Even if you can safely drive at 95MPH, you are required not to do so, because of the general safety. Likewise, even if you are not tempted by others’ skin, the fact remains others may be.

It’s still confusing sometimes, especially when some cannot distinguish between modesty and formality. They are not the same! Nor is modesty synonymous with percentage of hidden skin.



You are lucky you aren’t tempted in this way.
Other men though are. To them, immodesty is an assault on their soul.
People are quite different. The spiritual theologian Garrigou-Lagrange teaches that everyone has a predominant fault, which reveals itself in what sort of thoughts we have. People have different things to battle in themselves. If immodesty isn’t an serious temptation to a man, then one of the other cardinal sins will be instead, with many vices in its train if they fall to it.



I don’t see the OP at all saying that he can’t recognize that its a near occasion for others. I think the OP is merely stating that he doesn’t have a problem and probably can’t understand it in others… that is all. Probably wondering what all the hub-bub is about and asking about it here.

Sometimes its hard to understand the ease in which some fall into a particular vice when we ourselves do not. Its like thinking cheese smells like disgusting toe fungus and wonder why some people get so fat ravenously eating it all the time when you’d never touch it let alone put it in your mouth. :shrug:

OP its a gift not to suffer a temptation. Just be thankful. Do keep in mind that sometimes people can change when life circumstances change… sometimes for the good and sometimes for the worse. Not saying you do, but just to say it for teaching sake, let no one say “I would never do that” … pride goes before the fall. There but for the grace of God go I… that sort of thing. Its a grace from God not to suffer from a temptation. Because of that I often see it as as duty to pray for those who do suffer those temptations so that they too might be graced with that gift.


I’m not sure what you’re trying to say. I noted that he does seem to recognise it as a near occasion for others.

Sure, it can be difficult to understand why some things are hard for others when they are not hard for us. I’m not sure I can help the OP if that’s the crux of his question. But I will note that I love stinky cheese. Indeed, we each have our own proclivities in life.


I come from a family with a number of drug and alcohol addictions. I chose not to use drugs or alcohol, not even receiving the blood at communion. During an appendectomy, they gave me dilauded without informing me. I developed no addiction. My brother has a heart attack, he gets one shot of dilauded. He becomes a drug seeking addict. The difference between my brother and I is probably a gene rather than some great moral virtue on my part.

So the medical community has learned to give dilauded only when necessary, in a hospital environment, and as electronic medical files become more the norm, doctors will know how much dilauded you’ve been given, and as necessary stop it. Most people do not need big brother checking out their medications. But for that portion of the population that is susceptible to addiction, these steps prevent unknown numbers of people from the life destroying effects of addiction.

You may not have the gene that predisposes you to addiction or the previous experience that causes sexual stimulation from visual images. But other people do. The coworker you mention may be perfectly safe with you when she’d dressed in a tank and Daisy Dukes, but that’s not the case with all men who will fantasize, and some men with power and boundary issues could be dangerous. Such men with power and boundary issues probably fantasize plenty without the tanks and Daisy Dukes, but if you make dilauded available at CVS, the dilauded addict is going to help themselves.

In short, the reason for modesty is so sex addicts don’t get high on you.

For the record, modesty applies to men to.:blush:


I heard that dressing immodestly is not in and of itself of grave matter, but is still always sinful. It is of grave matter when it is done with the intention of getting someone to lust over them. It is great that you are not tempted by immodesty, but most men are.


I am glad I work in an environment where sleeveless tees and Daisy Dukes are not acceptable.


Bring on the burqa! :dts:


So sorry underacloud… I see now that I think I read what you said wrong! My apologies! I’m glad you said something.

LOL… loving stinky cheese…


Yey for you! That’s awesome, I hope you are as fortunate in lots of other areas that people find tempting as well.


Well, the gravity of the sin depends on the level of immodesty. The level of immodesty depends on the culture surrounding it.
Shorts and sleeveless shirts are probably immodest enough to be venially sinful, depending on your worldview, but really not necessarily gravely sinful. They’re considered normal attire, and yes they show almost everything but they’re not scandalous in any way - unless you’re wearing them in an inappropriate environment, which it doesn’t sound like she is.
Some women hold themselves to higher standards than others. Some women would take some as simple as above the knee skirts to confession, while others have no problem with shorts to mass. Consider that one of the requirements for mortal sin is full knowledge (or sincere belief) that something is gravely sinful, what might be a mortal sin for one woman might not be for another.
It’s very subjective and depends a lot on your opinion and what you’re used to seeing.


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