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Flashcards in Key Concepts Deck (56):

Agape love

In Chrsitianity. The highest of all kinds of love; unconditional love which expects nothing in return. Sometimes Self sacrificing, and is always thoughtful and volitional. Active love. Eg. Helping a stranger



Greek-Erotic, sexual love; associated with love at first sight, the love that seeks for togetherness, ultimately expressed in love making. Not necessarily virtuous and can lead to moral astray. It has been considered a very dangerous focus on the physical body while missing the virtuous intellectual love or unconditional love. Eg. In Buddhism, sensual love can be an obstacle to enlightenment as it encourages attachment.


Philial love

Brotherhood or sisterhood. Affectionate, warm and tender platonic love. Friendship. Profoundly moral form of love, in that it characterises natural bonds that exist in groups.
However it can lead to inter group tensions and conflict


Divine love

God is love


What is religion sometimes viewed as in the secular world?

As having outdated views of marriage which reflect patriarchal cultures and biological ignorance. Religions have rarely given women equal status to men and women in relationships and marriages.


Women in the secular world

Portrayed as an object for sexual pleasure


What did Pythagoras believe?

humans should abstain from the physical, and live a quiet contemplative life. The physical obstructs the soul's progress, it is not holy.


Song of Songs

Old Testament. Dialogue between an unmarried couple who express the sensual erotic beauty that they see in each other; celebration of being in love


Sexual pleasure in the modern world

Holy grail, pursued purely for its immediate physical satisfaction and with mutual consent, any form of sex is morally right


Freedom of the individual

-Rise of sexual crimes, teenage pregnancy rates
-Decay in traditional values, undermining the family, more abortions;others see those values as restrictive, preventing the realisation of their true sexual identity


Give 2 points that Adrian Thatcher makes about his research on marriage in the modern world

-In the UK, more people enter marriage from cohabitation than from a single state
-The importance of marriage is gradually dismissing due to cohabitation and the weakened connection between marriage and parenthood


What is cohabitation?

the state of living together and having a sexual relationship without being married


What did Roger Crook argue about marriage?

Family life is often sentimentalised and idealised; a typical marriage, out of love and a typical family life is simplistic


What did Crook identified in marriage?

-Changing status of women. Women have moved into the workplace and make up over 50% of the work force
-Development of safe methods of contraception and availability of abortion- premarital sexual relationships
-Deeper understanding of sexuality


What is premarital sex?

sex before marriage


What did Gareth Moore note?

Religious authorities saw many elements of sexual ethics as being taken for granted and the focus was on the purpose of sex, which is to bring children. Sex before marriage and adultery is wrong


Give a quote from Moore

"Today, the old certainties are dissappearing, and sex and its place in human relationships is one of the most controversial areas of modern Christian ethics"


How does the Bible itself sees sex?

As a normal part of life. Sex and human sexual nature is God given, part of God's creation, and though sex humanity is fulfilled through the unity of man and woman coming together- heterosexuality is the norm


Where can we find an example of the sensuality of a man and woman's Union?

Song of Songs


What did early Christians see celibacy as?

More holy. Jesus did not marry, although he did have a positive view of marriage. The first recorded miracle by Jesus was at the wedding of Cana and he repeated the teachings of the Hebrew Scriptures on the importance of marriage and had a stricter interpretation of divorce


How does St. Paul see sex?

-he didn't like it, he recommended celibacy. However, he acknowledges that celibacy is a special gift that is not for all, and he warns that it is better to be married than to commit sin and risk damnation.


How does St. Paul see marriage?

-Reflecting Christ's relationship with the Church. (Ephesians chapter 5). Marriage is compares to The Trinity, as the two become one in a relationship


Example of Jesus being forgiving to people who had a complex sexual history

The Samaritan Woman


Explain the Samaritan Woman

Deep and open conversation in which Jesus tells her about the water of eternal life and she asks how she may get such water. She is a Samaritan woman of doubtful virtue, but this does not matter to Jesus. In fact, he breaks many taboos of the time in even talking to her


How does St. Augustine see sex as?

A sin except for the purpose of reproduction


How does Aquinas see sex as?

Had a more positive view of the enjoyment of sex, although he still retained the idea that sex had to be connected to reproduction


What do most Churches believe in terms of sex?

Sex outside marriage, adultery, masturbation and homosexual sex are all sinful because of the New Testament


What does the New Testament state?

Statements about marriage or sex forming the basis of moral judgements use Aquinas's theory to make judgements about the purpose of human beings, and from that to determine which sexual activities fit such a purpose and which do not.


The purpose of marriage

-marriage is a gift from God. It is one of the sacraments in Roman Catholicism and is for the purpose of procreation, a covenant in Protestantism and a mystical Union in the Anglican Church. Good way of life, the family unit promotes oscillating stability
-Fidelity(fides) to one another, procreation (proles) and union of the parties (sacramentum)


What is a covenant?

An agreement between God and human beings


What is a sacrament?

A religious ceremony or sacred event in which God is believed to be present and an active participant


In which ways have the purpose of sex being judged?

-Sacred scripture
-natural law


Was contraception allowed?

No because it prevents God's purpose. Sexual activities that did not lead to the birth of children (including masturbation, anal sex and oral sex) were also forbidden- prohibited by the a roman Catholic Church. As children require a stable environment, marriage is necessary


What did the Churches in the 20th C. Understand sex as?

It's rooted in love, uniting, bonding, healing and affirming feature between a married couple. Link to the Church of England quote


Complementary and egalitarian views of Christian marriage

Men have a greater responsibility than women; headship of the couple and family and must protect and provide for the family, noted in the southern baptist convention 2000 article XVIII


What does Ruether argue?

Women's equivalent dignity or status- Augustine stated that men have headship which lead to the current Roman Catholic teaching that only men can be priests, only men possess the image of God


Homosexuality in the early 20th

Homosexual acts were crimes, it is considered a mental illness for which appalling treatments were proposed


Homosexuality in some parts of the world

Crime and violence against gay and lesbian people is often ignored or condemned by state authorities


Sexual Offences Act 1967

Wolfenden Report 1957- there have been no criminal sanctions for consenting adults in private who have reached the age of consent in the UK


Civil Partnership Act 2004

Same-sex unions approved


Homosexuality in Christianity

-homosexuality is wrong- Leviticus 18:22
-punishable by death- Leviticus 20:13
-no possibility of life arising from the sexual Union, and so it is wrong from a natural law basis- genesis 2:24
-heterosexual relationships mark 10:7/ Matthew 19:5
-St Paul's letters- degrading their bodies and having unnatural relations: men committing indecent acts with men-Romans 1:27


What is the catechism of the Catholic Church?

Summary of the Roman Catholic Church's teachings on homosexuality


What did the catechism of the Catholic Church say about homosexuality?

There is no sin involved in an inclination towards a member of the same sex. The homosexual person should be treated with respect and compassion, unjust discrimination should be avoided. However, the church maintains that homosexual acts are sinful because of the biblical condemnation of homosexual acts as depraved and intrinsically disordered.
Others suggest that the unitive act between a loving couple is a good enough purpose for sex, despite being non-reproductive.
-Jesus said nothing about homosexuality


What happened in 2003, in the USA?

The New Hampshire diocese chose as bishop an openly gay man, Gene Robinson, who lives with his partner


1967 law

The age of consent for homosexual males was set at 21


1994 law

The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act reduced the age of consent to 18


2000 law

The Parliament Act was invoked to ensure the passage of the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000, which made the age of consent 16 for both homosexuals and heterosexuals


Liberal Christian support for homosexuality

-The quality of the relationship-be it heterosexual or homosexual is what determines its moral value
-If God created men and women as homosexuals, then that nature and inclinations must be good. All are made in the image and likeness of God


What does Moore wrote about Christians views on homosexuality?

While Christians are happy to follow the law set out in Leviticus, which says that it is immoral for a man to lie with a man, they reject the passage later on that advocates beheading as a punishment
-Scripture is being used inconsistently to reinforce prejudices. We ignore the laws that we find inconvenient while pursuing those that attack minorities that we do not like


Buddhist approaches to sex, marriage and life part 1

-similar to Christianity
-Sacred texts prohibit monks from speaking to women about obscene or erotic acts
-doesn't expect procreation, as birth is a gateway to a life of suffering
-ascetic tradition- cravings cause suffering and erotic cravings can be strong


Buddhist approaches to sex, marriage and relationships part 2

-marriage is recommended to those who cannot live celibate lives
-sexual moral behaviour is governed by the third precept which prohibits sexual misconduct, mainly adultery. Relationships should be honest, informed by right speech, action and livelihood.
-The Dalai Lama has stipulated that homosexual men and women have dignity and rights, but masturbation, oral and anal sex are all improper uses of organs.


Buddhist approaches to sex, marriage and relationships part 3

-Signs of change. Harvey notes that the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order welcomes homosexuals in its outreach programmes and runs a meditation retreat for gay and lesbian Buddhists
-Homosexuality, heterosexuality and transvestitism are all morally neutral.


What argument do Roman Catholics use to argue against homosexuality and abortion?

-homosexuality:wrong. Pope said that homosexuality is a greater problem for the future of the world than climate change
-abortion: wrong. Goes against the purpose of proles(reproduction)- has no moral basis


Explain the problem with Bentham's theory of utilitarianism when applied to sex

Bentham's quantitative outlook may say it is good for one to masturbate over a picture of a rape victim if it brings about pleasure as the victim will never know therefore she cannot feel any pain


Explain Mill's alterations to utilitarianism applied to sexuality

-favoured intellectual pleasures of a physical pleasure
-he would regard marriage as a loving relationship where intellectual compatibility and understanding was as important as sex
-he would probably advocate contraception as this would allow couple to have sex to have smaller families that they could cope with, hence devoting more time to intellectual pursuits


Give a quote that exemplifies his attitude to sex

"It is better to be a human being dissatisfied than a pig satisfied; better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied"