Reposted from my blog Fourteen White Lilies
We live in a pornographic culture that reduces human beings to their sexuality, to their physical body, to their potential for pleasure. The porn industry generates $13 billion each year within the United States, according to statistics cited by Covenant Eyes. Huffington post even goes as far as to say “The Internet is for porn. We all know that.” This info graphic goes as far as using porn’s widespread use to promote pornography as a natural part of human nature. Pornography often depicts violent fantasies as normal sexual experiences and causes changes in the brain’s wiring in both how the brain views the opposite gender and sex.
Yet pornography isn’t just on our computer screens. Pornography is on our billboards, our tv screens, our magazines, our books. Pornography and the “sexual revolution” spurned on by birth control has changed not only the way we view sex, but other people. Our culture is obsessed with labels—heterosexual, homosexual, slut, prude, player—and too often we fail to recognize that these labels and insults reduce a person to their sexual traits. Pornography has created a culture in which everything is viewed through the lens of pleasure, a culture stripped of humanity and desperate for love, a culture which lives in darkness and drags and mugs unsuspecting victims to draw them into the darkness. How often do we ourselves fail to recognize the sacredness of another? Each time we sin, we drive nails into Our Lord’s hands and feet, not only because we have hurt His Heart, but because we have hurt the hearts of His Beloved Children by failing to recognize the inherent sacredness given to each of them by God.
When we objectify others, when we reduce them to their sexuality, to their flaws, to their mistakes, when we see others as anything other than a beautiful child of God made to reflect a unique, previously unknown aspect of God’s love, we participate in this culture of darkness. We participate in this pornographic culture, this culture that breeds death. Through participating in this culture of death, we not only fail to recognize the sacredness of others, but we fail to recognize the sacredness of ourselves.
Full participation in the New Evangelization requires a call to recognize the sacred. We cannot evangelize without becoming a witness to Light in a great culture of darkness, without becoming Love that casts out fear, without calling others to recognize the sacredness of humanity. Our Blessed Mother became such light, such love, such a call to recognizing the sacred through bearing our Lord Jesus. Through becoming the Mother of the Source of Life, she shared in Christ’s mission to bring all to Life through Mercy and Love. Our Lady’s vocation is a vocation of life, a vocation in which she calls out to lost souls as a Mother, sees their brokenness, and as a loving Mother heals them while holding them in her arms, giving life to them through her Son. Our Mother challenges us to draw others toward herself, to love others so that they may recognize the sacred within themselves and others.
Over a year ago, I felt the Blessed Mother challenging me to further recognize my sacredness in a particular way—wearing the veil at Mass and Adoration. I was hesitant, but once when I began wearing the veil, I knew in my heart that through wearing the veil I was drawn closer to Mary’s Heart and humbled before the Lord. I knew the theology behind the veil—it was a sign of humility before the Lord, it serves as a sign of women’s vocations as brides of Christ, it signifies the ability to carry life. I never thought about the veil’s role as a powerful response to the pornographic culture—until today.