I’m writing a post about some pop music that (like much music today) objectifies not only women but human beings, and lauds them as simply sexual objects. That led to this little brainstorm here.
As I have come to see again and again, morality is not a set of arbitrary rules one must follow. It is about the way things are, and the consequences of our actions stemming from these realities. Some things are the way they are: blue is blue, red is red, water is the liquid form of H2O and ice is the solid form. Blue is never going to be red, or red blue, and ice is never going to be a liquid nor water a solid.
Or say you’re trying to lose weight and you allow yourself one sweet thing a day; and if you eat that cookie before dinner, you can’t have the cake for dessert because you’d be going over your calorie limit. If you eat both sweets, there are consequences: you’ve ingested more calories. What do you do? You can’t pretend you didn’t eat the extra calories, because you did, so you’re faced with four options: exercise a little longer to burn the extra calories, cut back on the calories the next day, do both, or neither. If you choose the fourth option, and choose it on a regular basis, you won’t lose weight. You’d gain it. Many of us would complain, “Augh, I’m not losing any weight! Why aren’t I?” We expect it to just drop off like those Adipose aliens in Doctor Who Season 4.
But that’s now how losing weight, or life in general, works. We can’t just snap our fingers to get what we want or need. It takes time, effort, and most of all sacrifice. Self-denial. Self-restraint. Three words people nowadays don’t like to hear. Instead, we grumble about how we keep gaining weight even though we’re eating low-fat everything, when our problem is we’re just eating too large of a portion, or not exercising like we need to; we complain about our service not being fast enough, when really we’re just too impatient to slow down and wait; we complain that unborn babies are “things” or “inconveniences,” when we’re the one’s who have sex so that the egg and sperm meet in a woman’s uterus to form the babe.
These days we try to avoid consequences and avoid putting any effort into anything. We’re concerned only with our own comfort and pleasure. Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World isn’t just a frightening possibility now–it’s a reality. And some of its consequences are horrible.
We’re having fewer children. We’re immersed in our electronics and spending more time locked up inside ourselves than in interacting with other people. We yell and scream and spew vitriol over the internet, sometimes over important issues, sometimes over the most trivial things, and nothing gets resolved–we remain in either a state of prideful self-righteousness or prideful outrage. We feel entitled to all the things that we have, even our unnecessary pleasures, and we pout if they are taken away. We ignore the raping, looting, pillaging, and persecution of others because we care more about the next celebrity scandal or the next big blockbuster film.
What do we do to combat this horrifically selfish reality? Look to the ultimate example of sacrifice, self-denial, and selfless love: