Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Issues and Ancient Attitudes Towards Sexual Ethics

Issues surrounding sexual ethics and Ancient views surrounding sexual ethics
When sexual ethics is explored at A2 there are four specific topics which are: contraception, premarital sex, extramarital sex and homosexuality.
This area focuses on exploring the purposes of sex and hence whether contraception is something which is morally acceptable. By far this area has the most conflicting views. Contraception is also an important topic because it has some serious implication for example, the world population and amount of unwanted babies that are born. 
Premarital Sex
This not only focuses on what the purpose of sex is but in what context it can be performed. This is am important issues because it poses deeper questions like do children need to born into a married couple? Does the relation of the two individuals involved matter or whether it is done after marriage? Personally, I find this the most interesting point because over the years changes in attitudes towards this has changed the most.
Extramarital Sex
This area is concerned with sex being performed outside of marriage. Up till today there are still very negative views towards this because it seems to dismiss the purpose of marriage. It is also something which is not associated with positive outcomes which is what usually spurs these negative feelings.
This like premarital sex has seen a huge shift in attitudes. Civil partnerships are now legal and a homosexual couple is not seen as something evil (in most people’s eyes). It is important because it questions our human rights, if we are of a different sexuality then do we not have the same rights as anyone else to express it?
Ancient Views
Pythagoreans and Stoics
  • Disapproved of sexual activity as it is not holy. Pythagoreans believed prevent the progress of the soul because it is bodily.
  • Feminist and believed in equality between women and men.
  • Sex is solely there to procreate and distracts us of our paths.
  • It should be conducted between two people who have no relationship so no one person is put down (quite literally!)
  • He suggested breeding parties be held were only the elite of society were allowed to have sex and breed.
  • Once the baby was born women should go back to working the way they did and the baby should be looked after by nurses in nurseries.
  • Rather strange idea in my opinion.
  • The celebrated pleasure and sensual enjoyment.
  • The encouraged sexual activity and all forms of it.
  • They saw sex as a supreme good and believed variety was a spice of life.

  • They had the right balance saying the pleasures of the mind need to be balanced with activities such as sex.
  • Old Testament had an all in all positive attitude to sex.
  • The Song of Songs in this is a whole book on love making 
  • However, it still demonstrated a rather society. 
  • New Testament seems to be focused around sex being used as a mechanism to have children. This was encouraged by the Thomastic approach which used cause as a way of determining morality.

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