The Bible and Risqué Films

Discussion in 'Abrahamic Religions' started by Namaste Jesus, May 3, 2014.

  1. Namaste Jesus

    Namaste Jesus Praise the Lord and Enjoy the Chai Staff Member

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    Matthew 5:28 as found in the KJV of the Bible: "But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

    Do you think this passage applies to risqué films?

    Now I'm not talking about pornography here of any kind. By risqué I mean silly little stories like those the late Benny Hill was involved in where some poor hapless lass winds up on display in just her undies. Again, I'm only talking about films with no nudity, no sex or intimate contact whatsoever.

    The reason I ask, some years back I was involved in the production and distribution of a series of films of this type. Recently those films were called into question using Matthew 5:28 to denounce them.

    So what do you think. Do films of this type go against the teachings of the Bible?

    I will refrain from giving my opinion since I'm a little too close to the subject to be objective, but I would appreciate input from the other members of the forum.
     
  2. Namaste Jesus

    Namaste Jesus Praise the Lord and Enjoy the Chai Staff Member

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    Forgot to mention, the company that distributed the videos I was involved in went out of business several months ago due to health concerns and those videos are no longer available.
     
  3. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

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    'Risque films' is another word for pornography.

    Yes you are. You're talking about the objectification of the human being for the sexual gratification of others. It is pornography. Your films might be all about shoes, with not a centimetre of flesh in sight, but if you market to shoe fetishists, then it's porn.

    Exactly, its fantasising about women as sex objects. Benny Hill was a pervert, by the way, so you've rather shot yourself in the foot there.

    Any form of entertainment that objectifies people for the purposes of sexual gratification is pornography, and you don't need the Bible to tell you that.
     
  4. Quirkybird

    Quirkybird Granny to five

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    Did anyone see the British 'Carry on' films? Most of them were funny and of the sort genre NJ is suggesting. They certainly weren't porn but a bit risqué, which is totally different, imo. There is nothing abnormal in being attracted to a person in a sexual way, providing you don't force yourself on them of course.
     
  5. Tadashi

    Tadashi New Member

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    But the question is, someone who's supposed to be a religious, spiritual, moral leader (ex. pastors, priests, or any types of gurus) should be involved with distributing sexually suggestive products? Wouldn't a higher standard apply?
     
  6. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

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    They were made in the days of casual sexism, casual racism and any number of other 'isms' in the media that are no longer acceptable.

    Not in mine. I suppose the difference is where one draws the line with regard to what one considers demeaning. I find nothing defensible in stripping someone of their dignity, even if they're left in their underwear.
     
  7. Quirkybird

    Quirkybird Granny to five

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    Just because you are a priest etc doesn't mean you can't laugh at, and enjoy at something which is funny, and not harmful, as something like the Carry on films. If Jesus was around today maybe he would have enjoyed them too!
     
  8. Tadashi

    Tadashi New Member

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    As for Matthew 5:28, I take it as, it cautions against fantasizing over even a fully clothed woman who is not your partner. Well, if you are not Christian, you may not care about that, but if one calls himself a Christian, I think he should care.
     
  9. Tadashi

    Tadashi New Member

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    I'm not talking about just 'laugh at, and enjoy at something', which I don't think Jesus would ever do with any risqué materials anyway, but I'm talking about being the creator and distributer of it.
     
  10. Namaste Jesus

    Namaste Jesus Praise the Lord and Enjoy the Chai Staff Member

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    Thomas: "'Risque films' is another word for pornography."

    The word Risqué and the word Pornography mean two entirely different things.

    World English Dictionary
    risqué
    — adj
    bordering on impropriety or indecency: a risqué joke
    [C19: from French risquer to hazard, risk]

    World English Dictionary
    pornography
    — n
    1. writings, pictures, films, etc, designed to stimulate sexual excitement
    2. the production of such material
    [C19: from Greek pornographos writing of harlots, from porne a harlot + graphein to write]

    Thomas: "Yes you are. You're talking about the objectification of the human being for the sexual gratification of others. It is pornography. Your films might be all about shoes, with not a centimetre of flesh in sight, but if you market to shoe fetishists, then it's porn."

    A fetish does not necessarily have anything to do with pornography, but as I said in the OP. "I'm only talking about films with no nudity, no sex or intimate contact whatsoever."

    None of the films I'm talking about were ever marketed to a specific group or have anything to do with sexual gratification, but rather bawdy humor. Anything at all can be used for sexual gratification whether or not that was ever the intention. Artisans have no control over how their works will be perceived. Perception, sexual or otherwise is in the eye of the beholder.

    I think your definition of porn is way too broad here. By that assessment, lingerie and shoe ads in tabloids and on TV could be considered pornography. Or anything else for that matter.

    Thomas: "Exactly, its fantasising about women as sex objects. Benny Hill was a pervert, by the way, so you've rather shot yourself in the foot there."

    Again, I'm talking about films with no nudity, sexual situations or intimate contact. Just bawdy humor.

    Those who fantasize about women as sex objects do so regardless of the setting, what the context of that setting may be or how the women are dressed at the time. It's the viewer's own perception. Just as you perceive the late Benny Hill to be a pervert and his works, by your broad definition to be pornographic. That's just your perception. Just because someone perceives it that way, does not make it so.

    Just for the record, I think the late Benny Hill was a pervert too, God bless him, and so is everyone else on the face of the planet in one way or another. Do I think his works were pornographic? Absolutely not! In no way shape or form.

    Thomas: "Any form of entertainment that objectifies people for the purposes of sexual gratification is pornography, and you don't need the Bible to tell you that."

    Again, You're ignoring the statement I made in the OP. "I'm only talking about films with no nudity, no sex or intimate contact whatsoever."

    Nothing whatsoever to do with sexual gratification. This is an incorrect assumption. Again, your definition of pornography here is way too broad. On these terms, anything at all that can be used for sexual gratification would be against the Bible regardless of the original intention. If we follow this logic most of the artwork in the great Cathedrals of the world would be suspect.
     
  11. Quirkybird

    Quirkybird Granny to five

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    There is NOTHING wrong with sexual gratification providing it is between consenting adults gay or straight and you aren't cheating on your partners. Some people frown on masturbation, I would much sooner a young person, of either sex, masturbates in private rather than jump into bed with someone too soon. They need to be mature enough to have sexual intercourse in a responsible manner, and not risk pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases.
     
  12. Namaste Jesus

    Namaste Jesus Praise the Lord and Enjoy the Chai Staff Member

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    I love the 'Carry On' films. I have "Carry on Doctor" in my personal video library on VHS.

    Interesting side note. The films I was involved with were very popular in the UK and 30% of the sales were to women.
     
  13. LincolnSpector

    LincolnSpector Member

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    Agree completely. To my mind, the moral issues involving sex come down to three things: It has to be consensual, it has to be safe, and it has to be honest.
     
  14. LincolnSpector

    LincolnSpector Member

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    From my point of view, and I'm not a Christian, that seems odd. You can't avoid temptation. You can only choose to not act on your temptations. If being tempted is itself a sin, the rules are unfairly stacked against us.

    btw, if you're not married, and the woman you might lust after isn't married, where's the adultery? Adultery is pretending to be monogamous when you're cheating on your partner.

    Another issue: What about a film with serious artistic intent and explicit sex, such as Blue is the Warmest Color?

    For that matter, what about the Song of Songs--an erotic poem in the Bible?
     
  15. Quirkybird

    Quirkybird Granny to five

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    There are some Christians who think sexual intercourse should be for the procreation of children and not for enjoyment!:rolleyes:
     
  16. LincolnSpector

    LincolnSpector Member

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    I know. I never did understand that point of view.

    But then, Judaism can seem pretty ridiculous, as well--even to me. :)
     
  17. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Dear BQ, NJ and LS —

    If you wanted the 'cultural' answer, then you should have posted to the Lounge or somewhere else.

    By posting under 'Abrahamic Religions', and specifically about the Bible ... I can't begin to think what you expected.

    Suffice to say that such gratification shows a failure to understand the reasoning behind the need to embrace the necessary detachment, self-discipline and ascesis for meaningful spiritual development in any and every tradition — don't simply ask a Christian, ask anyone, Buddhist, Daoist ... it doesn't matter, we're all the same on that point.

    So I don't have to defend anything here, really, you simply won't find anyone of authentic spiritual insight to agree with what you're saying.
     
  18. LincolnSpector

    LincolnSpector Member

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    Not every tradition. In Judiasm, there's no conflict between spirituality and sexuality. They are both seen as posiitive and joyful parts of a well-rounded life.

    I realize that there must be some strong spiritual pull to celebacy--a lot of religions from different cultures feel it. But I don't really understand it. And it's far from universal. Hinduism has a strong anti-sex strain, but it also has a lot of erotic art. I think you'll find conflicts like that in a lot of religions.
     
  19. Namaste Jesus

    Namaste Jesus Praise the Lord and Enjoy the Chai Staff Member

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    I don't find Hinduism to be anti-sex at all. Quite the opposite really. Their are passages in Hindu scripture similar to Christian doctrine regarding adultery and premarital sex, but other than that I find it to be relatively guilt free when it comes to sex.

    According to Hinduism, sex is an integral part of life and is part of the four Purusharthas of life.
     
  20. Namaste Jesus

    Namaste Jesus Praise the Lord and Enjoy the Chai Staff Member

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    First of all, this thread is in the correct category as it calls for interpretation of a specific Biblical passage and religion is one of the exclusions in Lounge conversation.

    What I expected was for the question raised in the OP to be addressed. As yet this has not happened. Although "LS" has come the closest.

    Thus far all that has been offered is a moral judgment of the question itself, without actually answering it and a lot of comments, mine included, related to that response and not the topic of the thread.

    The question posed in the OP was, Do risqué films, those with no nudity, no sex or intimate contact, amount to adulterous behavior as described in, Matthew 5:28 KJV? "But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

    I was really hoping that a few people would address that specific question first. (Matthew 5:28 does apply because... or Matthew 5:28 does not apply because...) Then we can go on to debate and comment on other issues that may arise from those responses.

    Whereas we seem to have put the cart ahead of the horse here.
     

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