Question about mortal sin/full consent


#1

So I'm definitely the type of person who will overthink "ad nauseum" about things i did or thoughts i had that may have been serious sins..to the point of harsh anxiety. I continually wrack my brain to figure out if I had commited a serious sin some day in the past week and it makes me so anxious i chew my fingers and sometimes lose my appitite. They call that scrupulosity, I suppose..

I struggled for several years with porn and masturbation addictions/obessions, and it took me years to get out of that and fully confess everything to the point that i felt i was completely free of it (though temptations are always there). But now i'm at the point that i feel like im never sure if all my sins are obsolved now. Or when to mention things in confession or not, etc.
One particular situation i want to ask about on here because i feel too awkward asking it to a priest is this: Two weeks ago, i was at home (I live alone) at night like usual and the intense temptation to masturbate came on. I avoided it by telling the devil to get lost, asked God for help, etc, and just telling myself that i won't allow myself to be overtaken by this particular sin again. The fact of the matter though was that i really wanted to give in to the sin..the temptation was so strong. So i went to sleep to avoid it all together but i woke up so many times that night being tempted like craaaazy. I almost gave in to the sin at one point but stopped immediately because i knew it was wrong. But i feel like i invited the near occasion of sin by not trying harder to avoid it.

My thought is that because i didn't with full knowledge consent to the sin, i should be in the clear..but it doesn't make me feel any better about it and i recieved communion at Mass today but still wasn't sure if i was ok to recieve.

Another situation was the other day i whacked my head in a door way (i'm quite tall) and it hurt like mad. I was trying to hold my tongue and not swear, but i couldn't help it and i took God's name in vain in my mind without even really realizing it at first.

Do instances like that qualify as serious/mortal sins? I try to confess every thing i can think of every week, and i missed confession this past saturday. Am I being way too scrupulous?


#2

If your conscience is at peace with God of course you may receive communion.

I have heard priests come out with some rather unfortuante language in similar situations, like banging their heads.

God does not expect perfection, he expects us to strive for perfection.


#3

[quote="Sirach614, post:1, topic:339269"]
So I'm definitely the type of person who will overthink "ad nauseum" about things i did or thoughts i had that may have been serious sins..to the point of harsh anxiety. I continually wrack my brain to figure out if I had commited a serious sin some day in the past week and it makes me so anxious i chew my fingers and sometimes lose my appitite. They call that scrupulosity, I suppose..

I struggled for several years with porn and masturbation addictions/obessions, and it took me years to get out of that and fully confess everything to the point that i felt i was completely free of it (though temptations are always there). But now i'm at the point that i feel like im never sure if all my sins are obsolved now. Or when to mention things in confession or not, etc.
One particular situation i want to ask about on here because i feel too awkward asking it to a priest is this: Two weeks ago, i was at home (I live alone) at night like usual and the intense temptation to masturbate came on. I avoided it by telling the devil to get lost, asked God for help, etc, and just telling myself that i won't allow myself to be overtaken by this particular sin again. The fact of the matter though was that i really wanted to give in to the sin..the temptation was so strong. So i went to sleep to avoid it all together but i woke up so many times that night being tempted like craaaazy. I almost gave in to the sin at one point but stopped immediately because i knew it was wrong. But i feel like i invited the near occasion of sin by not trying harder to avoid it.

My thought is that because i didn't with full knowledge consent to the sin, i should be in the clear..but it doesn't make me feel any better about it and i recieved communion at Mass today but still wasn't sure if i was ok to recieve.

Another situation was the other day i whacked my head in a door way (i'm quite tall) and it hurt like mad. I was trying to hold my tongue and not swear, but i couldn't help it and i took God's name in vain in my mind without even really realizing it at first.

Do instances like that qualify as serious/mortal sins? I try to confess every thing i can think of every week, and i missed confession this past saturday. Am I being way too scrupulous?

[/quote]

As for the masturbation question, keep in mind that it is grave matter, whether or not you fully consented to it. Now, granted, if you were being spiritually pummeled, that changes things as far as culpability, but the facts are the facts.

As to the hitting your head and swearing...I, personally, am not convinced that this would even qualify as grave matter.

Keep in mind, though, that whether either are mortal or venial, they are sin. They do damage your relationship with God and weaken you, making you more vulnerable to far more grave sin in the long run.

The Sacrament of Penance imparts grace -- yes, it restores your relationship with God, but it is a lot deeper than all of that. Bishop Paul Loverde (Arlington VA) published a reflection of the Sacrament a few years ago that you may find as a worthwhile reflection:

(snip)

(2) Sin, serious or not-so-serious, always leaves some effect: a kind of weakness or doubt of God’s love. There is a need for strength that only healing can bring. As we receive a share in God’s life, we are at the same time healed from the effects of sin and made stronger: to believe, to hope, to love and to struggle to do good. In a sense, we are like a person not only cured of the flu but also made stronger than before.

(3) Sin, mortal or venial, affects our relationship with God and Christ. The bonds are either completely severed (by mortal sin) or the bonds are weakened (by venial sin). In either case, we need to be restored, to come into a new harmony. Again, through this sharing in God’s life, we are reconciled to the Lord and the Church because of His saving grace. In a sense, we are like a person who was far away but now has come home. We are reconciled with both God and the Church.

(snip)

Read the whole reflection (and you should read it) here.

I wouldn't get all uptight about whether or not you received communion. As the other poster stated, if your conscience is clear, you didn't do the wrong thing. But I would avail yourself of the Sacrament of Confession as often as is practical, in order to strengthen your relationship with Christ. The more you rely upon His grace and the less you rely upon your own strength, the more He will be able to totally heal your heart.


#4

Advice for you: get a “regular confessor”.


#5

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.