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What manner of physical sex is permitted?


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#1 Chris Keller

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:41 AM

I have two questions: 1. Is vaginal intercourse alone prohibited before marriage, and are there authoritative sources for either yes or no available online? 2. Is vaginal intercourse alone acceptable within marriage, and are there authoritative sources for either yes or no available online? I have also posted this on Monachos.



#2 Lakis Papas

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 12:49 PM

I do not fully understand your questions.

 

Î’ehavior that married people have among them is not permitted before wedding.

 

In the historical language of the Church this kind of behavior is called "fornication" and it is prohibited by many Canons of the Church. What is prohibited is the overall behavior and not separate individual acts. Sexual behavior is not permitted as being part of the of married behavior, but even the cohabitation under the same roof between male and female (of not of the same family) is prohibited.

 

Church has a rigorous position on the issue because the over-familiarization between man and woman leads to excess of behavior which in turn leads to inflation which result in devaluation.



#3 Herman Blaydoe

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:03 PM

Lakis has provided the right answer. Sexual intimacy of any nature is generally a bad idea outside of marriage, if Holy Scripture, Holy Tradition, and the general guidance and time-honored wisdom of the Church are valued.

 

 If that is not sufficient, I highly recommend you discuss this with an Orthodox priest, who really should not say anything in substance any different, but may be able to provide a more pastoral explanation.

 

Herman



#4 Ilaria

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:05 PM

I would highly recommend another title of this topic - truly I tell you, I thought that I am too tired and did not read well :)

 

Forgive me, Chris!



#5 Chris Keller

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:06 PM

Thank you for your replies. I asked because it seems to me that when I look online I find a nearly even number of people who say that the Orthodox Church agrees with the Catholic Church, that all sexual acts must be "open to life", which means they must at least end with vaginal intercourse, and people who say that within marriage, non-abortive birth control is acceptable for valid reasons, and sexual acts that are not open to the possibility of pregnancy are acceptable always. 
 
For the first question I ask because I asked someone in spiritual authority about what the guidelines for that kind of thing were, and marriage preparation in general, and he said that anything short of vaginal intercourse was to be decided by the mutual agreement of the two in relationship.
 
From researching arguments for and against these viewpoints, it has come to seem to me like the only absolutely prohibitive explanation for why nothing at all is allowed other than married vaginal intercourse is that all sexual acts must be open to life every time. But even my (American) archdiocese says that isn't true.
 
If you have any links, that would be very much appreciated. Thank you.


#6 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:19 PM

I'm wondering if you have tried to research these matters yourself - there is a lot of information out there which is not difficult to find if you 'Google' the right words.



#7 Lakis Papas

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 07:58 PM

Child bearing, sex, marriage, family, all these concepts can be isolated and examined isolated and disjointed from each other.
 
What Church does is to unite and to complete the meanings of these concepts by assigning the couple to specificicaly find a balance that contains all and at the same time preserves each concept's autonomy. 
 
I think, today we fail to unify concepts. We are used to isolate moments of our lives. We are trained to live the "now" out of a general framework of life. The questions originaly asked are legitimate but are about rules for isolated moments.
 
Church does provide rules, but she does this for the newcomers. The rules are pillars for the weak in faith, in his next steps the believer operates with freedom. That is, the freedom of Spirit. For beginners, rules seem pointless and restrictive. When we move in faith we understand that the restrictions are ways for many concepts to make sense as one composition. 
 
As persons, we live a life with interconnected moments, that are isolated from each other. We have the gift, as logical beings, to unite time separated events in one concept. That is, one life with one meaning.
 
A lover, a husband, a father, can all be separate roles. When performed isolated from each other are offering the opportunity for me to express a role. But they provide no identity for me. When lover, husband, father are interweaved in a way that I can not distinguish each role from the other (I can not distinguish the lover from the father, the lover from the husband...), then the composition of all roles provides for me a complete identity. This is what the rules of Church educate newcomers into learning as a way of living: get an identity.

Edited by Lakis Papas, 21 November 2013 - 07:59 PM.


#8 euterpe ganatsios

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Posted 22 November 2013 - 08:21 AM

I too recommend that you discuss this topic with your spiritual father.   If you trust  him and know him to be a man without prejudice and one whom you can confide in then you will enlightened on this subject.   What occurs between a man and woman is special and should not be an expression of only one emotion : lust. 

 

We have discussed this many times in the past.  You can read the older posts and perhaps come to some conclusions for yourself.

 

Laki has expressed it very well  in his above post.  Roles become mixed and being intimate with another human being can be an expression of many things.  Love, comfort, etc.    Your spiritual father will know what to say to you.



#9 YvetteC

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Posted 15 December 2013 - 06:51 AM

Lakis has definitely given the best responses to this question. 






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