HOW DEPENDABLE IS OUR CONSCIENCE?

The week started with a sharp warning about the costs of premarital sex in the Mega article. Then after a healthy discussion with one of my friend on premarital sex I came out with another article on the next day where I described why premarital sex is injustice to the new born babies…

We had never been so open as this week on the issues like sexuality and premarital sex. And keeping the theme and the readers in mind the writer came up with another snippet letting all know what is the right age to have sex… Though she didn’t mean that age is the license to have sex but she just explained when a person should be ready mentally and physically for getting into a sexual relationship… And we all know, that varies from person to person.

My study says, in India we only see the physical part of a person. For example, parents usually see if their boy or girl is of a marriageable age or not. Then they start looking for a better match for them. What about their mental preparation for marriage or getting into a sexual relationship? Can a girl or boy is allowed by her/his spouse to wait for sometime as he/she is not prepared for sex mentally? What about Suhag Raat then? (Suhag Raat is the first night of a newly wedded couple). Why can’t we think of this fact and wait instead of taking hasty decisions regarding the marriages of boys and girls in our country?

Yeah yeah… I am getting back to premarital sex instead of talking about marriages… LOL!

Sexual thrill kills the essence of love and spoils the mysterious sexual pleasure which is supposed to be culminated in a private room of a couple in love deeply, madly. I loved the writer’s reflection upon what are the triggers of pre-marital sex and how and why to stay away from the experience. I would insist we all need to read that once more and memorise it literally.

Adding to the list of cost of premarital sex our new writer pointed out rightly, ‘premarital sex brings insecurity feelings.’

But what made me think more in this week is about the last snippet, “Follow your conscience.” A question props up in my mind “How dependable is my conscience?” “Will it prick at the right time?” Thinking about this, I posed a question yesterday during another discussion mentioning the featured picture of the snippet.

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I asked, “after coming this far as shown in the picture is it possible for them to listen to their conscience and abstain instead of going further?”

And my friend replied, “If the guy respects her feelings then yes… If he really loves her, yes… girls suddenly realise after they become intimate, not that they don’t trust but it’s their conscience that rings the bell.”

It is not that easy as it looks when the minds and hearts are engulfed in impending lusts and desires.  That’s why the scripture says, “Now flee from youthful lusts.” How does somebody flee from something? Just imagine to get the picture to understand the weight of the word ‘Flee’.

Now, another thought comes to my mind is, how can everybody’s conscience is not same? How come my conscience says something and my brother’s conscience says something else? We all are human and definitely created by ONE and only ONE God. As human being we have similarities physically and even emotionally then how can his conscience allows something and mine is acting differently? If that’s the case then how can I be sure that my conscience says the right thing? 

I had to search on Google and many articles about it. I found one scripture portion from the Bible it reads as follows:

They show that the essential requirements of the Law are written in their hearts; and their conscience [their sense of right and wrong, their moral choices] bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or perhaps defending them.

‘They’ or ‘their’ are used for humans in the above quote. The conscience is the God-given moral consciousness within each of us. Consciences of people can not be different. Everybody’s inner voice tells the same thing… Warns about the same thing: ‘what is right and what is wrong’.  A writer describes about seared conscience as under:

If the conscience is “seared”—literally “cauterized”—then it has been rendered insensitive. Such a conscience does not work properly; it’s as if “spiritual scar tissue” has dulled the sense of right and wrong.

So, it is our utmost responsibility to keep our conscience clear, sharp and not insensitive at all to guide us at the right time. 

We had a great week discussing about a very important issue of life. And I am thankful to all my co writers for contributing resourceful articles. 

Keep reading, keep commenting…

Stay Blessed!!!

(Picture Source: Wikihow)

PREMARITAL SEX BRINGS INSECURITY FEELING

“Man, did you just say that you did it yesterday?” Max said, “How cool!! How was it? Was it your first? Where did it happen?”

Rob said, “Calm down!! It wasn’t my first.  And it’s definitely not my last.”

With a proud look he added, “She was interested and so was I. And we thought it might just click for us. So we went ahead and gave it a try. Well I don’t think we are compatible man. We just broke up.”

Fun and cool. Yes, these kinds of words go out with the term premarital sex. We are just finding out how compatible we are sexually or we are trying to get better at it or we are trying to know each other better.

Oh!! Do we realise how bad it is for us!! Emotionally, physically and spiritually? Sex, is not for mere entertainment or a part of the selection process but it is a holy conjugation of two persons to become one flesh. Well, who cares!! WE just love doing it and of course it is just a passing phase. And even if our conscience pulls us back, we keep repeating it time and again… WHY?

Insecurities seep in as we do it the first time and it keeps growing and growing as we continue with it. Insecurity of being

  1. caught,
  2. compared to the previous partner,
  3. ditched and left alone again,
  4. deemed unfit of company with friends,
  5. losing class or standard.

So, why in the first hand start doing things as such and not maintain a clean life? Why should we be compelled to lead an insecured life? Sex never ensures deep or profound sense of emotional bonds or security of any sort. Well the concept of live-in relations gives us an obvious idea about it. WE must learn to say no to such situations. It might not work out the first few times but later on we will be the ones who would be respected no matter what. Keeping the marriage clean by not indulging in premarital or extramarital sex will not only give us a wonderful life, but it will also being in lots of happiness to our family and give us emotional and spiritual security. Sex, from the very beginning has been a mystery and we have always been advised to keep it a mystery till our marriage… so that the marital couple can have the best out of that mystery when it is unveiled within a marriage bond.

THE COST OF PREMARITAL SEX

“Don’t excite love, don’t stir it up, until the time is ripe — and you’re ready.”

Our God loves relationships. He created man and woman and wanted them to be as intimate as possible. That’s why He created marriage. We all know that marriage unites a man and a woman and sex improves it. So He created sex for them. He had planned it very beautifully and uniquely much before they were created. He created sex because it helps a man and woman to be UNIQUE. It helps them to be ONE. It helps them to be INSEPARABLE. Yes! Although it is true that the mind and soul in any relationship are more important aspects than sex but it does improve a marital bond. Sex is a wonderful gift of God for  married couples.

But today’s world thinks differently. Many are engaged in premarital sex. An author says, “For many teenagers today, sex is a means of communication, a new experience, an index of maturity, a source of peer approval and a challenge to restrictive parents or society, and an escape from loneliness or other pressures of life.”

Sex is a powerful force and ought to be used properly; that is within the boundary of marriage. If it is not used properly, people indulging in it have to pay a heavy cost. You may ask what can be the costs? I would love to explain them as under:

Costs of Pre-marital Sex

Premarital sex has adverse effects on the person’s whole being. It also affects few other aspects of life that are directly associated to the person involved.

Adverse effects on the person:

On the Mind:
Sexual activity arrests the minds of young people or as for that matter any adult. They become deprived psychologically. Their social and academic development gets affected terribly. Their academic performances and performances in their work places decrease. Premarital sex is unsatisfactory, especially for girls as its not secure.

Oxytocin is a powerful hormone released by men and women during orgasm. It probably deepens the feelings of attachment and makes couples feel much closer to one another after they have had sex. The theory goes that the more sex a couple has, the deeper their bond becomes.

Oxytocin also seems to help cement the strong bond between mum and baby and is released during childbirth. It is also responsible for a mum’s breast automatically releasing milk at the mere sight or sound of her young baby.

It is very clear from the above mentioned statements that sex unites a man and a woman. Each time when a person gets involved in varied sexual encounters and moves out of it, it affects his / her mental faculty. These encounters are like small marriages and divorces. And this affects his / her family life when he / she actually gets married and lives with a different person. The sexual memories haunt the person day and night, years after years. Premarital sex leaves a scar, which torments that person throughout his / her life.

On the Body:
The youth or any adult involved in premarital sex may contract one of the many venereal diseases rampant today. They can also contract the deadliest disease like AIDS, because contraceptives don’t give 100% protection. In the later stage or after marriage they can become infertile because of sexually transmitted diseases.

Young girls or single adults may suffer from unwanted pregnancies, abortions, miscarriages etc.

On the Spirit:
Sex between unmarried persons is called fornication. So premarital sex is a sin. When people go against the nature or God they cannot live in peace. Some people live in severe guilt because of sexual compulsionsNeither they can disclose it nor they can leave the habit. Sometimes they feel degraded morally also. Sometimes they feel very lonely. Many people commit suicide for the guilt of sexual sins.

Adverse effects on the other aspects of life:

Society:
Society doesn’t allow these things though these days premarital sex has stealthily crept into societies. But when somebody is exposed he or she is shunned and put to shame in the society. Rest of the people in the society stop talking and mingling with the person’s family who is exposed of premarital sexual encounter. The story of exposed person encourages other singles or young people to get involve in premarital sex, which is really a bad sign for the society.

Family:
The youth or the single adult involved in premarital sex can bring shame to themselves as well as to their families. The parents and other relatives of that person feel ashamed to show their faces before outsiders.

Children born:
The children that are born outside marriage can have terrible psychological problems, because of single parents. They may have to face taunting words in schools, colleges and even in work places.

My dear young and single adult friends! The costs of premarital sex are very heavy and painful. So do not engage yourself in premarital sex, for which you may have to pay a very high and costly price later. WAIT is the key word for you. Wait till you are married. Enjoy the wonderful gift of sex after marriage.

We will discuss more on this subject later this week. Good night!!!

Stay Blessed!!!

ARRANGE YOUR LOVE MARRIAGE

(In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Happily Ever After.”)

When I was young and in love with my husband (then boyfriend), my father asked me “What is it that you like about him?” and I had a list of items to tell him. Then he asked me “What is it that you don’t like about him?” and I said “He is perfect”. The reality is that I actually could not think of anything negative quality in him. The world was bliss then, I believed that my life just like a fairy tale would end to be “happily ever after”. I believed that there was nothing that I did not know about him and that we would have no issues living together after marriage. I longed to live with him, to be 24/7 with him. What happened is that reality hit me in my face just after we decided to get married. I realized that there was a lot of work needed in my relationship with him. 

This is a natural process. When we are in love, everything about the person seems perfect and when bold decisions are taken believing that the person and the relationship is perfect – bad consequences need to be dealt with. Have you heard of teenagers eloping and getting married when they are just out of teens? Most of them end up in divorces or separation. This happens not because there is anything wrong with the concept of love marriage – it happens because we fail to recognize that even love marriages need to be arranged. 

In my opinion, there are some basic thoughts about different areas of life that need to be discussed even in love marriages – because you love the person doesn’t mean that the person has the same thoughts and values about different aspects of life.

1. Talk about ambitions in life – how do both of see yourself 10 or 15 years of life together? Settled abroad, doing a business, parents of x number of kids, working in MNCs or NGOs etc. This is important that you both understand each other’s ambitions as individuals but still make plans around it to have common goals as well.

2. Talk about money – How do you value money? Are you or your partner possessive about money? Are you or your partner a spendthrift or a miser?

3. Talk about family values – How important is your family for you or your partner? Do you wish to have your parents stay with you in the long run? Or do both of you picture yourself as part of a nuclear family? What about kids? 

4. Talk about hobbies – Do you approve of each other’s hobbies and agree to make adjustments to accommodate each other’s interest? What sort of adjustments need to be made? 

5. Talk about social life – How many and what kind of friends each of you have? How do each of you like to socialize?

6. Talk about any factors that you can never compromise on – What is it you or your partner is not ready to compromise on at any cost. For example – when I and my husband spoke about this, he was very clear that he will never compromise on his brothers and they will continue to be his priority. When I was asked the same question, I said that I would never compromise on my career. It was clear to us since beginning that what is it that is so important for each of us individually.

I think these are few important areas that need t be discussed. Of course, you can know your partner better without broaching the topics directly simply by just spending time with him/her, but it is always better to have a clear discussion and have complete clarity on such things. It is alright to have difference of opinions, important question is – do you love the person enough to make adjustments all your life to accommodate that difference?

So, if you are in love – just pause from saying lovey-dovey things to each other and have such talks that will make your life easier in future and will help you work on your marriage.

TWO GOLDEN RULES THAT KEEP THE MARRIAGE FIRE BURNING

(In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Happily Ever After.”)

“We’ve mutually decided to part ways as we have realized that we are not compatible.” This statement comes so naturally to many couples these days. The marital vow “…till death do us apart” is gone in a whirlwind.

What’s going wrong? What then can keep the marriage fire burning, despite all odds?

Marriage is the union of two completely different individuals. How much ever the couple may claim to know each other, still there would be a lot which they end up not knowing. Speaking for hours over phone and going on dates with every available opportunity does help two individuals to know each other. But, till they share the same roof, they would never know the true nature of the other person. It is then that things start looking complex. The initial sparks, the romance, the curiosity to discover each other give way to bouts of rage and finger-pointing.

Well, this is not to say that we should aim for perfect marriages. A perfect marriage will always remain a utopian concept. The marital journey is always a roller-coaster ride…kabhi khushi – kabhi gam (sometimes happiness – sometimes sadness), kabhi hasi – kabhi aansu (sometimes laughter – sometimes tears). But, still the ride has to go on.

There are two God-given golden rules to ensure that the ride goes on:

First, husbands love your wives as yourself: Can any man hate himself? Hardly ever. Husbands are not to lord over their wives, but to treasure them, protect them, care for them, provide for them, be considerate and sensitive towards them and cherish them. Wives are given to husbands as their companions and so loving their wives ought to be the primary responsibility of husbands. This is where most husbands fall short. Feeling her pain as his own pain, rejoicing in her joy as if it were his own joy, sharing her sorrow as his own sorrow, giving up certain habits which irritate her ensures that the husband makes himself one with his wife.

Husbands! Remember, your wife is a precious gift given to you by God. Love her as you would love your own self. Love her with your body, mind and soul. Do not shower her with expensive gifts to compensate for the love you need to show towards her. Gift yourself to her!

Second, wives honour your husband. A loving husband deserves his wife’s respect. And many an unloving husband has been transformed by his wife’s humble submission. Honouring your husband doesn’t mean being a doormat. It doesn’t also mean to wash your husband’s feet everyday or to eat from the leftovers off his plate. It does not mean that wives are meant to be the subordinates of their husbands. That’s not honouring! Honour comes from the heart. Honouring your husband means treating him like the head of the family for all purposes. Honouring your husband means respecting his decisions and opinions. This is especially very difficult in a world where wives contribute to the family purse and enjoy flourishing careers. But, this is an essentiality to smoothen the rough edges in a marriage. A man feels like a man only when he is treated like a man.

Wives! Remember, your husbands need your honour. Do not gossip about their flaws with your friends. Do not criticize them in public. Put yourself aside for a while if the situation demands. Cherish their presence in your lives!

A loving husband and an honouring wife make a happy home for life.

MARRIAGE A CONTRACT OR COVENANT?

(In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Happily Ever After.”)

Marriage is a wonderful relationship, which according to general opinion is made in heaven. It is partially true because marriage is a union instituted by God, but also the partners have to play vital role to keep the fire of love burning on earth. It involves the active participation of both the partners in working out a good, healthy and everlasting marriage.

hand-861275_1920In the present generation with modern ideas about freedom and self- centeredness creeping in, marriage is viewed as a Contract between two persons. Two people make a deal to experience “live in” relationship as long as it suits them. With the appearance of suffocation and boredom, the partners split with mutual understanding. These relationships are not based on love but selfishness and ambitions, which can be easily broken. Sometimes marriage is treated like a business deal. Faithfulness until the work is done.

The correct perspective of marriage is that it is a Covenant between two people along with the presence and witness of a third party (actually the first) i.e. God. The seriousness of the Covenant relationship can be understood when we look at the unfailing and ongoing relationship of God with human beings. Though we fail time and again to keep our promises of faithfulness and love towards God, yet God remains faithful and never gives up on us.

A Covenant signifies an eternal relationship. It cannot break with the storms and tempests of life. Rather it grows stronger and sweeter with each passing hurdles. When two people commit themselves to each other for a lifetime, it demands undivided devotion, unflinching love, and unwavering faithfulness towards each other. This is possible only with God as the strong Foundation. If He is the chief corner stone, friend, philosopher and guide of both the partners, there is 100% guaranty that any marriage, no matter how miserably mismatched according to the worldly standard will never hit the rocks but will always have a safe landing in spite of rough weather.

Swapna Nanda

LOOKING AT A WOMAN LUSTFULLY

Finally, the ‘Lustful Week’ has come to an end… 😉

Throughout the week we have addressed teenagers and adolescents with regards to the issue of ‘Attraction & Lust.’ But are we, adults free from lust? Do we guard our eyes effectively?

I remember an incident described by my cousin when we were teenagers. He & his friend went to their coaching class. While returning they saw a known uncle coming out of an adult Movie Theatre. These two mischievous creatures went right in front of him and greeted him. The Uncle! Huh! Literally ran away from them feeling ashamed.

One Bible verse really struck me.  I could not proceed further when my eyes fell on this Bible verse in Matthew 5:28 (NIV) where it says, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

I started searching for the parallel versions of the same verse to see the synonyms of the word ‘lustfully.’ I found the verse in different translations which are taken from ‘biblelexicon(dot)org’ as follows:

New American Standard (©1995)
‘but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.’

King James Bible
‘But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.’

Young’s Literal Translation
‘but I — I say to you, that every one who is looking on a woman to desire her, did already commit adultery with her in his heart.’

What does the word ‘lust’ really mean? Is it looking at a woman’s breasts? Is it admiring the curves of a woman? Or is it thinking of going to bed with the woman I am looking at? The word ‘lust’ really confused me.

Google search gives the meaning/meanings as under:

Noun: Very strong sexual desire.

Verb: Have a very strong sexual desire for someone.

Synonyms: Noun. desire – craving – longing – passion – concupiscence

Verb: crave – hanker – desire – yearn – covet – thirst – long

The Lexicon online Bible says, the original word in Greek is: epithumeó 

It describes the word in English further as: ‘to show focused passion,’ ‘greatly desire to do or have something.’

Before I could conclude on the meaning of the word ‘lust,’ the article which we read few days ago on last Sunday came into my mind suddenly.

Yeah! I am talking about the Mega Article written by Prabhjot which clearly states that it is a natural instinct of men to look at the curves, breasts etc., of women to whom they ultimately get attracted to marry. That is how we are created.

I found two conflicting thoughts within my mind. Both the Bible verse and the article seemed alright to me yet, why there seemed to be a contradiction? Or was I missing the difference somewhere?

I decided to do an in-depth study on the word ‘adultery,’ because that’s the result of our natural instinct.

The web meaning says: “voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and a person who is not his or her spouse.”

The Lexicon online Bible confirms it with a definition: I commit adultery (of a man with a married woman, but also of a married man).

Adultery involves illicit relationship between a married man or woman. The Bible verse doesn’t contradict the natural instinct of human beings getting attracted to the physical bodies of people of the opposite gender. In fact, that is how we are made! But, lust in the mind creates a craving for adultery in action – “a thought of having physical or sexual relationship with the woman I am looking at.”

There is a big difference between ‘a thought of having physical or sexual relationship with the woman’ and ‘just getting attracted to the physical beauty of a woman.’ The natural instinct of a man to get attracted to a woman is for choosing a life partner which is not needed for married men anymore.  So, as a married man I simply cannot have both kinds of thoughts running in my mind at the same time.

This is really a struggle many of us go through today. We need to improve not just to show our spirituality but also to show our faithfulness and love for our beloved spouses. This is a practical and a day-to-day issue for all irrespective of our beliefs. We need to improve and grow daily as ‘complete men,’ physically, mentally and spiritually.

(NOTE: Please be open and feel free to comment in support of or against my views. Please also provide your view points on this issue. This article is not for the Christians but for the all to read, comment and share their view points.)

Author’s Bio: Chiradeep Patra is a finance man who works in a NGO at Kolkata. He is a writer, motivator & counselor.