Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Human dignity

The great conversation continues about the "hook-up" culture, a culture that I contend is the natural result of the the sexual revolution and modern feminist philosophy. I want to thank Complicated Life for making an excellent point during a discussion of sexual purity:
Sexual purity is rightly to be valued and honored, but it is not the source of a woman (or man's) self-worth. We have worth because of our human dignity. Sexual purity is proper to our DIGNITY as human persons; a dignity that is inherent in being a person.

This cannot be stressed enough: No one has to earn or apply for human dignity. Not the unborn, not the elderly, not the disabled, not the mentally ill, not the hardened criminal. Not anyone. No one has to prove his innate value. Human beings have value simply because we exist. Our dignity is inherent.

Are you a nasty gossip? You still have human dignity.
Are you a lazy slob? You still have human dignity.
Are you a lecherous creep? You still have human dignity.
Are you a greedy corporate raider? You still have human dignity.
Are you an unrepentant serial killer? You still have human dignity. 

Do you feel like the most worthless, unloved, unknown person on the planet? It's not true. You are worthy, loved and known. And you have human dignity.

But why? 

Because human beings were made in the image and likeness of God. It's that simple. 

It's true that we can speak against our human dignity, we can act against our human dignity, we can deny or denounce our human dignity, but we cannot erase it or change the reality of it.

Pope Benedict XVI said it beautifully:
We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution. Each of us is the result of a thought of God. Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary.

You are not a random product of chance. You are not a fluke. You are not here by accident, just waiting to go "poof" into non-existence someday. You are known. You were planned. You exist because Someone wanted you to exist. 

As I've said before and will continue to say, you were made to love and be loved.

And if you understand what true love is, and Who true love is, you will never doubt your own human dignity again, and you will begin to live as a child of God.


  1. Beautiful post Leila. If Everyone understood This the world would be a much better place

  2. You always say it best. That is why you are the author of the bubble. Thanks for saying it with such clarity, truth and light. Now, who would not want to join?

  3. Amen! Once that is realized--that we are willed and purposed by God--and is internalized with humility, it gives us access to incredible power by allowing his divine life and mission to come alive in us. We are created saints, despite everything the world tells us to the contrary. Thanks for reminding us, Leila.

  4. So beautiful! Thank you for this post. One thing I noticed personally when walking from a modern feminist mindset into womanhood according to God's design was an internal state from constant anger to a place of peace.

  5. Thank you Leila. That is beautiful! It's so easy to say things like this to children.

  6. This is beautiful. Thank you for posting this. I wish everyone would realize this.

  7. Exponential Amen sista! Once this concept is internalized - EVERYTHING changes.

  8. Beautiful!! What a wonderful and uplifting post.

  9. This is so beautiful and natural that it's sad to me that modern feminists WOULDN'T want to subscribe to it!

  10. Thank you...this is beautiful! I just love reading what you have to say! :)

  11. Yes! So good.

    Reminds me of a talk I heard earlier this week, referring to Confession. The basics of it:

    "We are like water pipes (like the ones that run from our kitchen sink). The water represents God's love. As pipes, we are to run the water out to others. But, like all pipes, we get gunk on us from time to time that constricts the amount of water that can run through. The gunk, of course, is sin; sin constricts the amount of God's love we bring to others.

    Father Byrne made a clear distinction: we are not the gunk! The gunk does not become us and we do not become the gunk. Sin does not become who we are and we are not defined by our sin."

  12. Love this! Great post!

  13. Another thing that brought me to the Church was this- the idea that our value is inherent, not earned. Great post, and certainly refreshing to look at the world through the Catholic goggles and not the secular goggles!

  14. Leila, when I clicked on College Student it took me to the site Was that a real comment or a comment posing as an advert. link?

    What this student says was true in my high school days and yours I'm sure. I have a couple of sisters your age and I remember their stories. Human nature is and always will be the same. Pope Benedict XVI says in "In the Beginning": "When the human person is no longer seen as standing under God's protection and bearing God's breath, then the human being begins to be viewed in utilitarian fashion. It is then tht the barbarity appears that tramples upon human dignity." (pp.44-45) Doesn't this make not the men of the past that drove women to exert themselves in a social and political movement look pretty responsible for the feminism of today? It sounds like the feminist movement changed nothing about human nature and certainly did nothing to address the real problems of this world.

    The late Fr. Neuhaus in his book "As I Lay Dying" describes sexual desire as related to our desire for immortality. He says so eloquently (not like I do in my own words) that the reason we are so drawn to acting on our desires whether or not they are ordered or disordered is really related to our desire for what God made us for: Eternity (with Him). I think that if only we all understood more clearly how to find Eternity now, then, we wouldn't misdirect our efforts in the wrong places. Pope Benedict XVI shows us where to look in "God is Near Us":

    "Eternal life is not simply what comes afterward, something about which we can form no notion at all. Because it is a new quality of existence, it can be already present in the midst of this earthly life and its fleeting temporality as something new adn different and greater, albeit ina an imperfect and fragmentary fashion. But the dividing line between eternal and temporal life is by no means simply of a chronological order: so that the years before death would be temporal life; the endless time afterward would be eternal life--as we generally think. But because eternity is not just endles time but another level of being, such a merely chronological distinction cannot be right. Eternal life is there, in the midst of time, wherever we come face to face with God; through the contemplation of the living God, it can become something like the firm base of our soul. Like a great love, it can no longer be taken from us by any change or chance; rather, it is an indestructible heart from which spring the courage adn the joy to go on, even when exterior things are painful and hard...When God touches his soul man learns to see aright...'This is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent,' says the Lord in the Gospel of John (17:3)...Wherever such an encounter takes place, there is eternal life. The dividing line between temporal life and eternal life runs right through the midst of our temporal life."(pp.137, 139-140)

  15. Cordelia, that is so beautiful! Thank you!!

    (I noticed that on the college girl link, too.)

  16. AMEN!!!! Once I realized that I had value and dignity as a woman, as a child of God, thru the grace of God I was able over come some very neurotic behaviour!! Over eating was one of them.
    Hook ups are NOT just happening amoung our college students.....older women, my peers in the work place are bonafide "cougars"!!


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