November 21, 2010

The Latest Condom Business

The press and everyone else are having fun with this one.

Last night I heard (from a regular commenter on this blog, no less) a fine analogy to what Benedict seems to have said on the moral level: When robbing a bank, just don't shoot the teller.

In other words, the sort of case that the Pope seems to raise is already cut off from openness to new life and is already a case of compounded disorder, injustice, and misery. In such a case, perhaps using a condom to (perhaps) prevent the transmission of HIV could mitigate the tragedy of the whole business and be the beginning of a journey to real morality.

The problem with contraception is that it attempts to divide the unitive and life-giving powers of sexuality. The rotten fruit of this separation--which has been more or less accomplished in our culture--is in evidence all around us. In the sad and sinful case in which the Pope is speaking, neither of these powers is present in the first place, so there is nothing to frustrate through the use of a condom.


ben in denver said...

We were talking about this after mass yesterday and couldn't make much sense of it. It seemed to us that from a natural law perspective that the introduction of a barrier here rendered what was already a corrupt act even more unnatural.

Or to make an anaolgy. In the first place, it seems that some of the participants in said immoral act might have ended in Dante's upper hell, with the lustful--at least this is the case with the client. However, the introduction of the barrier would seem to necessarily place them beyond the walls of Dis in the circle of the violent.

Now I suppose the other party would be bound for the first ring of the Malebolge anyway with the panderers and seducers, which is below the circle of the violent anyway. But seems likely that this might make one of the parties fall even farther.

Any thoughts?

I know that Dante's not dogma, but his taxonomy of sin certainly seems to have a basis in theology.

ben in denver said...

it has come to my attention since I commented here that the Pope was speaking of male prostitues.

We did not understand this when were were speaking after church. Of course none of what I said in my prior comment would apply to this circumstance.