Notes from Norman

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Temptation – Sex and Desire

by Norman P. Grubb

Now the first point I am making is that it isn’t wrong to desire. Because I have a natural sex appetite; so have you. My immediate problem is that I want to look because I have a sex appetite. Now that I want is not wrong. That is simply a rightful desire. I have a rightful sex desire, and so have you. My immediate problem is that I want to look because I have a sex appetite. Now that want is not wrong. That is simply a rightful desire. Now temptations come to divert that desire in an illicit direction. The consequence is that I have to watch my eyes, for if something is brought before me in a newspaper or magazine or by the way somebody dresses, there is an attraction on the sexual side of things. I want to look. Now whatever I do I must immediately recognize that I have no business to look in that direction. That sex desire is not to go in that direction. The fact of wanting isn’t wrong; the fact of following out the want is wrong.

Now, I’ve found this: you can hardly take up a worldly magazine that hasn’t some part of it put to half-naked females. You take your American “Life.” I have challenged myself before now. Why have I picked up that “Life”? Is it to see a picture of Eisenhower or is it to see a half-naked bathing person? And I have said, “I also want to see a half-naked person there.” If that is why I am looking at that paper, I had better put it down. I know instinctively that there’s something in that paper which will appeal to my natural sex desire. For, although I hide it, deep down there is partly a desire, “when I get to page so and so I’ll probably see a bathing person or something.” “Ah now,” I say, “watch, watch! Underneath all that I am being tempted to change my natural sex desire into an illicit direction.”

Karuizawa Japan Conference of 1954
Topic: “Temptation”