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More From Peter Kreeft on Liberty

Earlier this week I posted an article, “Peter J. Kreefts “How to Destroy Western Civilization”, sharing some thoughts from Kreeft’s new book, How to Destroy Western Civilization and Other Ideas From the Cultural Abyss (San Francisco: Ignatius Press. 2021). In that article I said I hoped to write another article regarding what Kreeft says about sexual liberty in this book. Today I offer some of what Kreeft says about sexual liberty as well as my own thoughts.

Western Civilization has undergone a sexual revolution. Sexual intimacy went from being a private activity expressing love (see my articles on “Sexuality”, especially “Chastity and Sexuality”) to being an act of physical pleasure that may have nothing to do with love and intimacy. In doing so, sex loses its meaning. For many it is nothing more than something one does for physical pleasure.

Kreeft writes, “Our liberty is being denied because it threatens their liberty. Religious liberty threatens sexual liberty” (22). Our freedom of religion is being restricted because they don’t want us to be able to share our beliefs. Why? Because if they were to listen to what our faith teaches about sexuality, they would have to change their behavior. They don’t want to. This is nothing new. We can read stories in the Old Testament about people who persecuted the prophets to silence them because they didn’t like what they were saying.

Kreeft goes on to write, “They call us “judgmental” and “authoritarian”, but it’s because we are exactly the opposite, because we do not claim the authority to contradict our Creator and Commander, because we do not dare to be so judgmental as to judge His judgments to be mistaken, because we dare not erase or change the line He has drawn in the sand” (23). We leave the judging to God. It is God’s Commandments that we try to follow. We know we do not know better than God. We trust what God has taught us.

They talk about choice. For people to be free to make their own choice, they must know what their options are. As Kreeft writes, “We propose; we do not impose” (23). We want to help people have a well-formed conscience (see my article “Do We Listen to Our Conscience?”). Kreeft goes on, “But they seek to impose their sexual morality on us. They do not merely propose, they impose” (23). In saying they “impose”, I do not think he means that they literally force us to engage in sexual behavior that we do not approve of (although they do want to force medical professionals to do procedures against their beliefs like abortion). What they do want to impose on us is saying their sexual behavior is okay. They speak of tolerance of the belief of others but they do not tolerate our beliefs (see my article “Tolerance, Hate Speech, and Dialogue”).

Kreeft later writes, “Our society no longer thinks about the fundamental metaphysical question, the quest of what something is, the question of the “nature” of a thing. Instead, we think about how we feel about things, how we can use them, how they work, how we change them…” (60). People are turning away from how God has intended things to be (their “nature”) to seeing only how it affects them. Even when they think about how it affects them, people often only look at the immediate gratification they receive. In doing so, they not only objectify others, but may even objectify themselves. We are not created for physical pleasure. We are created to know God and to be loved by God.

All is not lost for nothing is impossible for God. And so we pray to our Father, “thy will be done“.

Peace,

Fr. Jeff

One Comment

  1. Brennan Mix says:

    Father,
    Well summarized version of the book! Our society does need a ton of prayer, especially what you said at the end “thy will be done”
    God Bless
    Brennan

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