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Anti-pornography group has a pointed - yet simple - message about the dangers of smut

Posted July 13

The XXX Church — a Christian ministry devoted to combating pornography — is warning that smut "is magnetic" and that consuming it can become a dangerous habit that entraps its users.

The article attempts to drive home this simple, yet pointed, message: "Just because something feels good doesn’t mean we should pursue it."

XXX Church blogger Zachary Horner also outlined the difference between what pornography promises — and what it actually delivers to its consumers.

"Pornography promises so much, and it delivers on it," Horner wrote. "It promises you attention and good feelings. It promises you relief, release, and relaxation. It promises you the reward of sexual fulfillment, if even for a moment."

But after all of these promises are doled out, he went on to say, people become hooked and often can't find a way out of the oft-times all-consuming habit, constantly seeking to fill their craving.

He said that it becomes an addiction that leaves users feeling a massive void.

"Ultimately, it leaves you empty," Horner continued. "It leaves you with just a few moments of pleasure and then a heck of a lot of emptiness."

He went on to argue that it is essential to have "real talk" about the issue, especially if people want to help others who are addicted. Mainly, he said, confronting and admitting the "magnetic" factor is important, as it helps people put barriers in place so that they can steer clear of smut.

"It’s something that draws our attention and our time in an intense and fierce way, with the potential to fight through and take over every part of our lives," Horner wrote. "But when we ignore that magnetism, we won’t give it the effort we need."

Horner also shared his own past struggles with pornography, saying that he, at one point, was unable to adequately assess its impact on his own life, explaining that its magnetic nature made it difficult to do so.

Studies have found in recent years that pornography has a variety of negative effects on the brain. A 2013 exploration of the issue found that the brains of smut addicts have similarities to the brains of people addicted to drugs and alcohol.

“When an alcoholic sees an ad for a drink, their brain will light up in a certain way and they will be stimulated in a certain way," researcher Dr. Valerie Voon said of the research. "We are seeing this same kind of activity in users of pornography."

Other studies have also found that porn might actually be quite bad for the brain, with a separate study recently finding that consistent porn viewers are less likely to stay — or even become — religious.

And another groundbreaking study titled, "The Porn Phenomenon" that was recently conducted by Josh McDowell Ministry, found that nearly half of young Americans are watching porn weekly, if not more often.

A variety of other shocking findings led Josh McDowell, head of the Christian group that bears his name, to speak out fervently in the wake of the study's release.

"Pornography violates all relational values between the individual and self, the individual and society, the unity of our families and our moral fabric and fiber as a nation," McDowell said. "When we objectify and demean life by removing the sanctity of the human person, our future is at risk."

Email: bhallowell@deseretnews.com Twitter: billyhallowell Facebook: facebook.com/billyhallowell

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