21 April 2012

Lust: The Deadliest of the Seven Sins

Months ago when I first turned to the internet for help and support, I came across Andrew at Row Boat and Marbles.  He was so helpful to me those first few weeks, and was the first to introduce me to the idea that before it was a porn addiction, it was an addiction to lust.  And even abstinence from pornography doesn't resolve the insatiable desire for lust.  I didn't understand this at first.  But I've learned a lot about lust since.

Lust is so ugly.  I have a scowl on my face just writing the word.  For more eloquent, experienced, and inspired words on the subject read Elder Holland's talk here or watch it here

Lust is to me the most carnal of man's desires.  It is arousing, it is exciting.  It produces adrenaline, and causes the blood to pump. It is both the parent and the offspring of fantasies.  In the beginning it is appeased by said fantasies, then it demands more.  The addict of lust turns to self-gratification and pornography, but the lust grows and demands more. 

It has been said that "sex sells", in commercials, video games and movies.  It is because lust buys.  Lust is subtle, it is easily justified because at first it exhibits no outward behaviors.  A man and his lustful thoughts are seen by no one.  But lust becomes a master and the slave makes his soul for payment. 

I hate lust.  Lust is the shadow I see behind Pete's eyes.  It makes me nervous and nauseous.  I'm learning to recognize it in his behavior and his mood, and when I see it I want no part of it.  Sex to satisfy lust is hallow and empty.  It feeds the beast but provides no lasting satisfaction. 

I do not want to confuse lust and passion.  Passion is healthy, and good.  Intimate relationships with passion are fun and meaningful.  But lust is greedy, forceful and self-serving.  Passion is giving, emotional and mutual. 

Learning to recognize and eliminate lust is fundamental to recovery.  I can't say personally but I can suppose that this is extremely difficult because lust is a thrill, and a man might be sorry to destroy his relationship with it.  Many men embrace lust, rationalize that it is "natural" or even "helpful".  But overcoming lust is why Mrs. A's husband chose left, and why the Nephite Warrior doesn't watch tv, and why I will not let it be the third wheel in my relationship with Pete. 

I am done now. I hope you can check out the links, and here's one more. (Some more insightful words from an essay on Row Boat.)


  1. I love your quote, "Sex sells because lust buys." Boy that is the truth! Too bad you can pay and pay and pay, but lust never delivers. One of my husband's reflection questions is, "am I winning a progressive victory over lust?" I'm seeing that the battle is a lot more encompassing than I ever thought. The question "did you look at porn today?" just doesn't cut it anymore. We've got to reach the roots.

  2. Love is the greatest attribute of God. all things were done by love. The worst counterfeit that Satan could come up with would be lust. It is the antithesis of love. it is the true root of addiction. Lust is like those weeds that you can't get rid of by pulling. roots and all must come out!!

  3. I guess I haven't given much thought to the words "lust" and "passion." This has given me lots of food for thought. And the photo in that "Third Wheel" link is pretty powerful. Kind of makes me sick.

  4. This post is so full of clarity and truth. Thank you for having the mental acuity to think this through and write about it so well. Love you.

  5. I have never thought really about Lust vs Passion. I think when you learn of your loved ones addiction that is one of the BIG questions your are constantly asking your self. Is he feeling LUST and needs to satisfy that lust, or is he Feeling passion for me?