Show me the evidence.

A recent email I received:

To Ceara Lynch,

I’ve been discovering that masturbation and unhealthy sexual thoughts, actions and tastes are detrimental to the human condition. For years I’ve watched pornography and even some of yours which is what has led me to write this email to you. Because I think you are a beautiful woman that clearly has the ability to influence men and women, I was wondering why you choose to do it from a darker angle.

I feel as if you could have a positive influence on this world, perhaps even the fact that you are aiding the unhealthy sexual appetites of men who are clearly psychologically broken you are making for a more fucked up world.

While i understand for certain individuals it may be hard to argue with material possessions or an easier lifestyle wherein much is given to them for their physical attributes and ability to manipulate. One might find it more rewarding to instead of manipulate these individuals help them to work through their problems. I’m not trying to change who you are as a person or put my beliefs upon you, but simply see a great amount of potential within you to help with the suffering in this world.

All the best within your travels on this planet
– Yosef

My response:

Hi Yosef,

Can you provide me with peer reviewed evidence that masturbation and atypical sexual thoughts have a detrimental effect on the “human condition?”

No one asks for their fetishes. They are created by our minds without our permission and without a “cure.” My customers are often burdened with these thoughts because people like you tell them they “psychologically broken” for having them. That’s ridiculous. They are just thoughts that fuel sexual release. Not problems.

I chose this “darker” angle because I find it fascinating. I’m sex positive and I think the diversity of sexuality and kinks that exist in humans (especially men) is extraordinary. I believe it should be recognized, represented and appreciated. Believe it or not, I find what I do very rewarding. Not only for the material compensation I receive, but because I find it gratifying to create a unique and much needed outlet for men who would otherwise struggle without it.

-Ceara Lynch

His response:

Good Morning Ceara,

I think that child psychologists would agree that a lot of fetishes are a result of early childhood development, not simply the wiring in our heads but rather the wiring that takes place as we grow. The situations concerning the child and his/her development at this stage are far beyond it’s control and much of his or her development lies in the hands of its parents and siblings and whoever else might surround the child at this age. With that being said its possible that the feelings of love for a sibling or parent could be mixed with being teased, tortured or subjected to various forms of punishment, pain, or humiliations.

In terms of being “broken”, I simply meant that by acting upon their fetishes which are unhealthy in terms of what would best suit an upright, productive, mentally hygienic human being, they are doing a disservice to their ability to think. When dealing with such subjects often there arises the importance of differentiating repression from sublimation. Repression is telling yourself that this does not arouse you and because of who you are it shouldn’t. Sublimation is acknowledging the physical attraction but understanding within yourself that to feed the flame would be counterproductive and it would be best to utilize the energy elsewhere. It also means that you should rise above your animalistic tendencies so you can treat every human being with respect and compassion instead of looking to sniff the next buttocks or get into the next vagina.

If someone was abused at a young age where they were forced to sniff butts, lick feet, and had their genitals abused by an older woman or any woman or man for that matter, and grew a fascination into these areas, I would imagine that 1.They would have a very hard time being taken serious by anyone who knew of these fetishes. 2. They would have an even harder time finding a suitable mate 3. If they indulged in these areas as if healthy it would be possible to transfer such character traits to their children (slaves breeding slaves) or worse yet subject their progeny to a tyrant of a wife or husband.

It would be probable that if any man or woman found their child masturbating to woman’s feet or the prospect of being humiliated they would understand that sex being the primary drive for man in life he would identify more with mean spirited domineering women and that would probably not be what they want for their child.

While i understand that the human brain has a darker side, and its impossible to ignore. I do understand that projecting further sexual immorality, violence, and anything that is against the productivity and advance of the human species as a whole is wrong. I know this because I’m considering studying film production, but I notice the effects that many films, televisions programs, and music have in terms of social engineering.

There have been studies to monitor the hormonal balance of the male during, before, and after ejaculation. When he ejaculates his testosterone levels decrease to base levels, and it takes about 7 days for them to return to their height. If a man is masturbating everyday he isn’t at his prime hormonally, and could be doing his body harm because of the vital importance of semen to the male body (the ancients knew much about this)

( I make these assertions to child development because I often ask myself would I want this for a child (any child), if my answer is no, then it shouldn’t be right for me)

I could go more into things if you are interested, I hope you have a wonderful day.


My response:


I absolutely agree that most fetishes are the result of early childhood experiences. That doesn’t dismiss the fact that our brains process these experiences in ways we cannot control. I also agree that some people derive erotic pleasure from actions that are similar to that of early childhood abuse. I personally cannot think of an any more empowering way for our brain to process something so tragic than to turn it into something we find arousing. Its turning lemons into lemonade. Again, the problem arises when society tells us there’s something wrong with it. There’s nothing wrong with having an orgasm no matter what is going through your mind when you have it. It doesnt hurt anyone.

I think you under estimate the power of fetishes when you bring up sublimation. Fetishes are not something you can just dismiss by reading a book or volunteering. For men especially, it is hard wired in our brains. Whether youre pretending they dont exist or acknowledging they exist but attempting to replace them with something else, you ARE repressing them. You’re putting a lid on a boiling pot that will surely erupt over time. The best course of action is to deal with them in a healthy way that does no harm to anyone. Sitting at home jacking off to my videos seems like a perfectly reasonable solution.

As far as kinky people having a hard time finding a mate or people to understand them, yes, I agree. There’s also a lot of gay people in rural areas that have the same problem. That’s just another example about how repressed and narrow minded our culture is about sexuality. When one is ostracized by their culture for an aspect about themselves they cannot control, it’s society that needs to change, not the individual.

As far as passing along these “traits” to one’s child or marrying into an abusive relationship; that’s an issue of compartmentalization, not kinkiness. Having atypical sexual interests doesn’t mean you’ve lost all sense of boundaries in the same way having vanilla sexual interest doesn’t mean you automatically have them. You can be a submissive in bed without being a submissive in life. Same with being a dominant.

I find it interesting you bring up the topic of testosterone and masturbation. Obviously your issue here goes beyond atypical sexual interest, to the orgasm itself. I don’t know that we’ll ever find any common ground here if you think orgasms alone are harmful to the individual and society, but you should realize your assertion that “ancients” were savvy to this does not lend credibility to your argument when any modern physician or scientist will tell you masturbation is harmless so long as you’re not doing it to the extent that you’re neglecting your other obligations in life. Most men in this world have no problem going to work, paying their taxes, and being a good husband and father despite taking 5 minutes out of their day to tug one out. Testosterone levels change for all sorts of reasons, and men with too much testosterone are more likely to commit violent and sexual crimes. I’m having a hard time understanding how lowering them temporarily in perfectly normal, natural, and pleasurable ways is harmful to anyone.

-Ceara Lynch

His response:


I understand exactly where you are coming from, however in terms of the health benefits or repercussions to masturbation you are only referring to western medical science. Eastern practices would say that you would lose your jing or chi or qi whenever you spill your semen “a la Samson and Delilah”. When you say that you could read a book or do volunteer work instead of masturbate, I’m sure that for some people that might stimulate them much more, and be more rewarding? most definitely!

The validity of the reports that come from media endorsed publications I’m sceptical of (which in accordance to your stance against mine perhaps you view eastern science the same). Without a doubt It’s in plain sight that the marketers of food, clothing, vehicles, and lifestyle in general are not in business for the general wellbeing of the populous, but to line their stinky pockets by any means necessary.

I understand that we are much a product of our environment, the homosexuals might perfectly do well in this world if their love did not escalate to anal or oral penetration using the device created for procreation and urination. I think that same sex relationships are important to this world and think the sexual energies could be sublimated into something much greater than the splurge. Love doesn’t equate to sex, Its the union of two people coming together in divinity of the soul (which you could argue). Lust is much different from love, and lust in my opinion is the cause of much turmoil in this world.

Its been well documented that there are many individuals who lived chaste lifestyles and went on to be some of the most influential people of the world (and some tyrants too). Salvador Dali said that the most wonderful paintings and dreams he had came to him during bouts of chastity.

I do see where you are coming from in terms of stimulating the wiring, but I still don’t see it as a healthy way for release. I’ve heard that even the brain can be rewired with work. Maybe the happiness of a healthy lifestyle and healthy relationships would mean more than a quick squirt into a sock and then the prolactin and cortisol increase and then the possibility of an addiction to the whole process.

I consider the gifts and talents which I posses a blessing, and I should use them to aid where I can instead of perpetuate the problems that are all to common. A wonderful body and face could only be made complete with a beautiful heart and good conduct.

I wish you the best

– Yosef

My response:


We clearly have very different methods of finding truth. But I find it interesting you used the word “skeptical.” Are you familiar with the basic premise of skepticism? Quite simply, it’s aligning your beliefs based on evidence (as defined by science.) As far as I can tell “chi” has zero credibility in the scientific community. Although I’m open to any evidence you might have on the contrary, especially in regard to how it relates to masturbation.

Further more, I’d love to see any evidence you might have to back up your claims about masturbation and lust being harmful in any serious regard. So far you’ve just told me what you “believe,” “think,” or “heard.”

A small handful of influential people who avoided sex does nothing to back up your claim. There is no direct causal link to their accomplishments and their avoidance of sex. It also does nothing to dismiss the vast majority of influential people who no doubt indulged their sexual interests as much as the rest of us

You seem to be under the impression that masturbation/lust and doing anything productive or worthwhile is somehow mutually exclusive. People read books and masturbate. People volunteer and masturbate. People have healthy loving relationships and masturbate. One does not replace the other because they satisfy completely different needs. That’s like chewing a piece of gum when you need a drink of water.

Again, if you have any evidence of the contrary, I’d be very interested to see it.

-Ceara Lynch

His response:


I can speak from experience (while it may not be documented in a scientific journal, for me self realization is of the utmost importance) that unhealthy sexual thoughts (which if you were to speak to a psychiatrist I’m sure that they could tell you that there are unhealthy sexual thoughts) are detrimental to the human condition.

Some scholars believe that the symbolism of the sphinx was man or woman with its head sitting at the top of the animal body to symbolise man overcoming his animalistic natures and rising above them. Perhaps if we were more inclined to a healthy attitude towards sex and kept it in the upmost reverence we would be building pyramids again.

While you might find it fascinating exploring the sexual drives of man, it’s probable that you and I have completely different outlooks on how to treat other people. With the understanding that it is essential to take the plank out of your own eye, and that you can not tell other people how to live or behave, I hope this conversation stimulated something within you. I did consider much of what you wrote to me, but deep down inside we all know what is right and what is wrong (perhaps that is wired into us as well though) and I still stick with my stance that to elevate your fellow man instead of keeping them at their base is a virtue, and that if more people possessed these traits, the world would be a more harmonious place.

The universe works in mysterious ways, the power of the pen is mightier than the sword, but the power of the woman is right up there in the same category.

All the best to you

– Yosef

My response:


Your personal experience is anecdotal evidence which is simply not enough to warrant belief when you consider the population at large. I’m sure it’s important to you since it’s your life and you need to do what works for you. But when you are making universal claims that include everyone else such as “masturbation and lust are detrimental to the human condition” you better have substantial evidence to back that up. As Carl Sagan said, “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” So far you’ve presented nothing but your own personal feelings on the matter. Sorry to say you really haven’t given me anything to think about. Deep down, I really do believe there is absolutely nothing wrong with what I’m doing.

Take care,



57 thoughts on “Show me the evidence.

  1. desmond

    This exchamge is quite interesting. Each point of view has some validity. I virtually live in sub space constantly craving humiliation. And it all started with nuns when I was very young and innocent.Have often tried to quit but find it next to impossible to do so.
    Am inclined to agree more with the guy because of the deep, unhealthy shame my actions cause me.
    I would like to read a book, go for a walk. But I won’t. I will just keep on sitting at the computer doing what I do and be horrified if my childen or friends ever found out.
    It really is a sickness..

    1. cearalynch

      How does your shame lend credibility to his argument? I haven’t denied that shame that exists for a lot of people with fetishes. In fact, I specifically acknowledged it. Its the result of engaging in something that is considered taboo by the rest of society, not because you’re doing anything wrong.

      What specifically do you “agree” with? That you’re losing your chi with every orgasm? Or that lust in general is detrimental to the human condition? Or do you think the world would be a better place if no one ever had an orgasm except for the purposes of procreation and the cement the bonds of true love?

      Your fetish is not sickness anymore than homosexuality is a sickness. Plenty of people get off on humiliation who have accepted and learned to live it. Sounds like you could use some therapy to try and figure out how you can do the same.

      1. josh

        Incidentally, the idea that lust is detrimental to the human condition is to be found in just about every religious and ethical tradition in human history, not a controversial claim

          1. josh

            Well i guess you can just look at the victims of rape and sex addiction, the thousands of ruined marriages, the unwanted children etc. Tell them lust isn’t detrimental to the human condition.

          2. josh

            Wow, you really are a skeptic. I suppose smoking doesn’t cause cancer. Or is that established since there has been enough ‘peer reviewed journals’ to make it authoritative!? How exactly is lust not a causal factor in rape? What definition of causality are you operating with?

          3. cearalynch

            Saying lust causes rape is like saying driving causes accidents. Sure, its a factor, but it’s not a cause. Otherwise everyone would be a rapist.

          4. josh

            “Saying lust causes rape is like saying driving causes accidents. Sure, its a factor, but it’s not a cause. Otherwise everyone would be a rapist.”

            I think your definition of causality is too strict. We live in a world of interdependence.Saying lust is a cause of rape is not saying that it is a sole cause, but part of he necessary conditions for most rape to take place. I don’t equate all causality with necessity, where if x is the cause of y, y will necessarily occur. Such a conception is far to rigorous to have any relevance to everyday life. Though perhaps it could be useful in other domains, like theoretical physics perhaps. By saying lust is a cause of rape, i only meant to assert there is a clear link between the two – not that lust is the only necessary condition for rape to place, such an assertion would be indeed absurd.

      1. josh

        Evidently. No therapist is going to tell people to learn to live with their self destructive behaviour. And no human with a grasp of logic is going to argue that is is ethically acceptable to make a load of cash off of fetishes which are caused by ‘improper female role models’ or other developmental issues, which you acknowledge.

        1. cearalynch

          Any sex positive therapist would absolutely teach people to learn to live with something that will never go away. Having a fetish necessitate self destructive behavior. I also don’t recall ever saying fetishes are caused by “improper female role models.” Although I believe that’s possibly the case for some.

  2. Anodyne

    It really is an interesting exchange. I’m impressed with Ceara’s clear-headedness with regard to the concepts of skepticism and evidence as opposed to anecdote. (Which is not to say I dismiss all of Yosef’s comments out of hand.) Reminds me of this famous cartoon:

    You’d make an excellent scientist, Ceara. I’d offer you a spot in my lab (yes, I’m a scientist) but somehow I suspect it would be a bit of distraction.

    Besides, you’re probably doing better financially with your current gig.

  3. Crutch Limply

    Honestly, I’d say the real problem is with financial domination. Those clips where dommes tell men to forsake their family and give in to their addiction to paying them is irresponsible at best and outright malicious at worst. Masturbating to a clip that invokes the fantasy of being financially dominated is perfectly fine, but fantasy and reality are two very different things.
    True story: after the 2010 Japan tsunami I contacted a domme via Twitter and told them how it cool it would be if they used their influence for good and told their fans (or slaves or bitches or whatever you want to call them) to donate to the Red Cross. And she actually did make a tweet telling her followers to do so. And I think that’s a compromise between the positions of you and Yosef. You’re still allowing men to indulge their fantasies, but you’re doing it in a way that benefits the needy.
    I guess the real question is when does someone go from a sub in a consensual power exchange to a psychologically damaged individual that is being taken advantage of?

    1. cearalynch

      But clips that talk about neglecting your family are fantasy. Subs request it all the time. It’s not “malicious.” It’s supplying a demand.

      1. Crutch Limply

        It’s not a fantasy when they actually DO neglect their families to give you their money. You think having some guy completely ruin his life and the lives of those who depend on him just so he can get his rocks off is okay because “it’s supplying a demand”?
        The exact same thing could be said of meth dealers. I’m not saying that femdom is inherently horrible or anything, I’m saying that actual financial domination, that is, not just “here’s a clip that’s basically a fantasy where you neglect your wife and kids but don’t actually in real life give me your kid’s college fund you fucking weirdo” clips, are just awful from a moral perspective.

        1. cearalynch

          No, I believe catering to popular requests is “suppling a demand.” Obviously if someone actually neglects their family that would be immoral. Just like you’re not suppose to actually kill yourself, cut your dick off, fuck your sister, or any do any other common themes that come up in femdom clips. It’s just a video to jerk off to; everyone I’ve ever come into contact with was perfectly capable and happy to do just that. If someone actually follows through with it, that’s their inability to separate fantasy and reality, not the clip producer.

          1. Crutch Limply

            Yeah but I’ve noticed the “cut your dick off” and “kill yourself” clips usually come with a disclaimer like “Don’t actually fucking do this, loser retard” but heavy findom like “Take out a second mortgage on your house for me” carries no such caveat.

          2. Mari

            you want to pass responsibility for your sorry life on to someone better equipped to deal. no one will take it – sorry, if you think about it a minute someone will steer for a while (professionally) as
            they should, and it is a surprise that the person in charge of the worshipper charges the “penitant servant”

          3. Crutch Limply

            Me or him? Because what I’m talking about is the complex issue of consent and how self-destruction (such as financial domination, forced intox, self-harm, etc.) factors into human sexuality. I understand it’s not black and white, of course it isn’t. But if a man forgoes paying rent for the sexual thrill of financial domination, is he really capable of consent?

  4. Peter

    I am delighted to discover critical thinking in this blog. It’s visibility online has increased as people get pissed off with sloppy journalism, brain-dead tv programming and conspiracy theories and look for answers instead of bullshit. His argument is fallacious in a number of ways appeals to nature and authority (of the ancients) and – oh, bollocks. I wonder how much of this you have to put up with, you show us one letter but I would guess it’s not the only one. There are lots of quacks out there in other fields tricking people out of their money at least with your therapy (you are not a therapist I know) punters get something for their hard-earned cash. -p

  5. Stevejob

    always thought you’re the coolest girl in this scene, but you’re one of if not the smartest on the block too.

    no brownnosing.

  6. Jordyn

    I think Yosef was too polite to state what is obviously the central point to make.

    Without doubt, at least some of the men you dominate or humiliate DO have actual psychological problems stemming from or involving their sexuality.

    One of the subtler points of desiring humiliation is that “getting in trouble” or experiencing real world consequences from the fetish can actually be arousing to the sub, vis-à-vis blackmail, financial domination, real life exposure, etc.

    I’m sure most of your customers have no problem with it… As you eloquently say they can take five minutes out of an otherwise normal day to rub one out, perhaps dreaming about sniffing your feet, but I am also quite certain that you can point to a few of your customers who go completely overboard, either spending way too much time and energy on masturbating, to the point where it negatively affects their daily life, or from attempting to realize some of the darker and more sinister fantasies.

    It is the fact that you seem to be willing to go along with some of the really dark aspects of domination and humiliation fetishes that could be viewed as detrimental to the condition of a few humans.

    1. cearalynch

      I don’t think that was his central point at all. Read again. He’s not against simply the extreme end of the spectrum, he’s against any and all of it right down to masturbation in it of itself. He’s anti-fetish, anti-lust and anti-pleasure. If he was simply bringing up the small minority of men who have genuine self-destructive tendencies it would be a different conversation all together. Sure, those men do exist. But I don’t see them as any good reason why producers like me should stop what they’re doing all together anymore than I believe in prohibition.

  7. Jordyn

    The prohibition point is a good one, but our society is oddly inconsistent on that whole concept, allowing alcohol and tobacco but placing heavy restrictions on medicine and outright banning recreational drugs.

    In the context of the topic under discussion, the point is merely that while prohibition is certainly viewed as ridiculous by modern standards, we do as a society tend to restrict access to or simply outlaw “harmful substances”, for concerns of public health, particularly if there is possibility of addiction,

    Coincidentally many online dommes market themselves as being addictive.

    … my poor attempt at being witty aside, the general reasoning as to why alcohol is legal and drugs are not, is that the majority of the population can enjoy drinking it without becoming addicted or taking permanent damage. The same, I think, would apply to any other potentially harmful “matter”… such as online domination. As long as the majority can enjoy it safely and without any serious detriment to their lifestyle then there is no problem.

    Also, I personally get a kick out of knowing that you are in fact capable of some of the darker shit… 😀

  8. josh

    Can you provide me with peer reviewed evidence that masturbation and atypical sexual thoughts have a detrimental effect on the “human condition?”

    There is loads of evidence in neuroscience journals as to the deleterious effects porn and atypical fantasies… Just look at all the sex addiction books. For fuck sake, i don’t mind you being an evil whore, that’s kind of sexy. But pretending your pornography is providing some kind of valuable social service for men to express their sexuality is a terrible joke. Nor is it original, it’s the classic defence of a the morally bankrupt profit driven porn industry trying to pretend they haven’t lost their souls.

    1. cearalynch

      Feel free to link me to these neuroscience journals. I’d be interested in seeing them. As well as any sex addiction books that you think adequately lend support to the claim that porn/fetishes are detrimental to the human condition. Most people look at porn. Very few have sex addictions.

      1. josh

        Ok, but before I’m able to do that, i’ll need you to adequately define what you mean by the human condition? You need to explain what exactly the human condition is before i can prove what is detrimental to it.

        On a general level, I think pornography harmful because it fosters the objectification of women by men. It trains men to view women, not as human wholes, but merely as objects of fantasy.

        What you seem to me to be ignoring about the porn industry is that it does not just cater to fantasies, it actually creates them. The concept of nueroplascticity is useful in explaining how this kind of dialectic operates.

        It is true that not everyone is a porn addict. One argument you might want to run is that there is nothing intrinsically bad in what you are doing. That it is a matter of moderation, and it is not your responsibility if people use your product in an irresponsible way. I personally think this argument is a tad irresponsible, considering a large thrust of the financial domination fetish involves the active encouragement of addiction.

        One point where i agree with you, at least partially, is that people with sexual fetishes should not necessarily be treated as though they are mentally ill. I think the only way to defend a view contrary to this is to rely on outdated arguments regarding natural law. Such arguments also support the condemnation of masturbation, homosexuality etc. I’m not a religious fundamentalist and these attacks don’t interest me, my attack stems from the left rather than the right. In fact I think there is a whole problem with the concept of sexual perversion itself. Here is an interesting article by an Australian philosopher to that effect

        However, what i think you ignore in reference to your point about shame, is that shame and guilt is fundamentally entwined with the experience of pleasure in the masochistic experience. This is precisely what’s fascinating about it. One does not simply derive pleasure from the experience of being humiliated out of thin air, it is not a natural drive that some people have, but one that is already entwined with social forces and attitudes, development etc. The argument from the porn industry that they are allowing the natural expression of a sexuality that is sinisterly repressed by our our society is just as bogus as the opposite argument from the religious right.

        1. cearalynch

          It’s usually best to ask someone to define their terms before claiming there are “loads” of evidence to support the original claim.

          That said, I don’t know how to define the “human condition.” You’ll have to ask Yosef, those were his words. The reason I reiterated it was because it seemed to me to imply something fundamental to humanity in it of itself. Which is absurd. Most people live perfecting happy and healthy lives with porn and masturbating. Do some people take it overboard and allow it to take over their life? Sure, but those are exceptions, not the rule.

          People objectify others all the time. Just today I asked someone for directions. I completely objectified that person as nothing more than a GPS. Does that mean I’m incapable of recognizing that he was a whole person? Of course not. Nor am I about to generalize all white males as objects of direction. Porn does not train men to see women as mere objects of fantasy; only a shitty upbringing and a lack of positive female role models can do that.

          Sure, porn can create fetishes. A lot of things besides porn can create fetishes too. So what? I don’t see any problem with that because I don’t think there’s any problem with having a fetish. The problem lies in how society stigmatizes fetishes.

          As far as financial domination encouraging “addiction,” you’re neglecting to understand that this is yet another example of supplying a demand. Men approach me all the time requesting this type of language. The “addiction” lasts about as long as their erection does. It’s just another fantasy.

          I’m not sure what you’re trying to argue in your last paragraph. I never denied shame was integral part of eroticizing humiliation, in fact, I thought I had specifically acknowledged just that. My bad if I didn’t. Regardless, I don’t understand how that makes it any less natural, normal, or worthy of expression.

          1. josh


            I’ll address your points in rough order of appearance. You are right that, it being the other guys point, you are not required to define the human condition. I think we should try to define it, however, and on most philosophically serious definitions of it, what you are doing is ethically shaky. The loads of evidence I mentioned, is in support of the idea that the effects of pornography are generally deleterious to human health. The evidence I mentioned was in the field of neuroscience, specifically. However, perhaps I should point out that I personally don’t agree with the implicit assumption in this debate, that the sole criterion for establishing ethical behavior is the authority of the natural sciences. I can’t think of many ethicists who would assert that the natural sciences have such authority. However, I mentioned neuroscience for the purposes of this discussion, and because I think it does tell us something valuable about how porn works. Just look up all the “your brain on porn” stuff now available.

            I don’t think the objectification of someone as a gps device while asking directions is analogous to the objectification of women that results from porn. This can be shown through the actual neurochemical effects of porn, which are vastly different and more dependence inducing than the effects of asking for directions, on one level, but it also shows itself on a broader cultural level. The recent work of Tom Wolfe, and the research he did for his ‘I’ am Charlotte Simmons’ novel is, I find, a fascinating example of how the lives of college students have been altered by the ‘pornification’ of our culture. This problem runs deep, though I don’t think it can be reduced to the idea that ‘porn is causing the moral corruption of our youth’. The porn may in fact itself be a symptom of a greater problem, connected with the capitalist economy, and the cynical manipulation of ideas that were necessary for the liberation of women in the 60’s, into a justification for the gross exploitation of human sexuality for individual profit nowadays.

            My initial purpose in labeling the production and satisfaction of fetishes in the porn industry as dialectical was to give a rough account of how ‘supply and demand’ operates. The capitalist economy works not simply by supplying demands, but by creating the demands themselves. I’m not completely anti-capitalist, and I think this is fine in some spheres. However, I think it is morally objectionable within other spheres. The important point is that the fact that there is a demand for self destructive and morally objectionable material does not mean it’s ethically ok to sell that material.

            What really interests me is how these fetishes come to be formed through porn. Most people who are into humiliation will acknowledge that they didn’t start out with a whole bunch of fetishes. They may have started out with an urge to transgress, to submit, or to break away from established cultural roles (none of which is a bad thing in itself), but they may have ended up dependent on a whole host of increasingly peculiar fetishes in order to obtain sexual gratification. Ultimately this turns out to be an alienating experience, with the potential to destroy families. The evidence for sexual addiction is overwhelming, as is the evidence that internet porn is creating a whole pile of new addictions, problems and compulsions that were not even imaginable 20 years ago. The addiction lasts longer than the erection. You know this. You are good at what you do; you know how conditioning procedures work. The more pleasure gets associated with humiliation, the more humiliation is craved.

            My last paragraph was probably a bit murky. What I was doing was pointing out a contradiction in your stance. On the one hand you say this fetishes are a “natural” expression of human sexuality, and that it is only because of social attitudes that fetishes are condemned, yet on the other hand you appear to acknowledge that the fetishes themselves are fuelled by those same socially constructed and presumably not ‘natural and healthy’ ideals of shame. Again, I’d point to the concept of neuroplasticity as the locus point where the natural and the culturally constructed are welded together.

            Another thing I’m also interested in is the distinction between reality and fantasy. I agree with you on the basic point that people come to have difficulty distinguishing reality from fantasy. But I think that financial fetish porn actually works by eroding that boundary. People find it more intense to think that they really are submitting to a beautiful woman, they really are giving her their money and dignity. It is that touch of the real that makes it so intense.

            Ultimately though, I think you are hard pressed to come up with some kind of ethical justification for your exploitation. And I bet if you took your arguments to any ethics class in your country, you’d be hard pressed to convince people there. It’s much easier to convince porn addicts and fellow pornographers.

  9. josh

    I should clarify i have no problem with femdom generally. What i have a problem with is the commodification of human sexuality.

      1. josh

        I make no claims to moral righteousness! I’m here because I’m being ruled by my dick at the moment. My favorite book is Plato’s Republic – in it he gives a tripartite conception of the human soul. There is a desiring hungry part (lust, hunger etc), a spirited part (pride etc) and a rational part. Plato does not think any of these parts should be repressed per say, but he thinks we should be ruled by our rational parts. He has a fascinating depiction of how different political systems tend to produce souls dominated by different parts. It’s really the birth place of a lot of different strands in western thought. In short, my problem is that there is an ongoing war between my rational part and my dick for the overall control of my personality. This is making my life lack harmony, because there is no integration in my personality. However, it would be remiss of me to blame you or any other domme for this fact. It is only by taking complete responsibility for your own actions that you can alter your behavior.

  10. cearalynch

    “The loads of evidence I mentioned, is in support of the idea that the effects of pornography are generally deleterious to human health. The evidence I mentioned was in the field of neuroscience, specifically.”

    What evidence? Again, feel free to link me to it.

    The problem I have with your general argument is that you’re speaking for a minority of people as though they represent the norm. Almost everyone looks at porn, yet very few people have any problems with it taking over their lives. So this isn’t an issue of porn and masturbation being detrimental to the human condition, it’s detrimental to a specific type of male.

    I reject the premise that I have no ethical justification that would hold up in a classroom. Plenty of people find nothing unethical about a person who sells alcohol for a living, even in spite of the fact some people have addiction problems. How is what I do any different? Just like with booze, most people can handle their porn and derive a lot of pleasure from it. There are helpful resources for those who can’t. Given those premises, most liberals would find nothing unethical about what I’m doing.

    You need to separate your issues here. Having a fetish, feeling lust, looking at porn, or masturbating in general does not automatically equate addiction or self-destructive behavior.

  11. josh

    The reason I gave broader cultural examples as well as referring to addictive individuals was to demonstrate that the problem is wider than that of individual addiction. Individual addictions are the most severe manifestations of the broader problem. More broadly, the problem expresses itself through the perpetuation of objectifying attitudes, an increase in social alienation, and the neglect of higher principals in favor of feeding the baser ones.
    I would actually like to see what would happen if you did go to an ethics class after they’d seen the actual content of your clips (something that has been rather obscured in this debate). Perhaps a few of the more crazy types of utilitarian’s would be on your side after all. But I think most deontological ethicists, virtue ethicists, and anyone coming from one of the major religious or the humanist traditions would be horrified.
    A better analogy than alcohol is tobacco. While most liberals would not support the prohibition of tobacco, most are relieved that tobacco advertising has been banned. They feel that such advertising is a cynical attempt on behalf of the tobacco industry to get people addicted to their product. I think a similar attitude would apply to your product. Let’s make no mistake, it is a lot more insidious than normal porn in the way it cultivates dependence. That said, I have no problem arguing that pornography in general implicitly degrades the viewer, as well as the participant or creator. Some of us just enjoy that degradation.
    I think you are confusing the ethical question with the legal one, in any case. In certain situations, although behavior may be unethical, it would be more problematic to attempt to make that behavior illegal, and so it is tolerated. I for one feel that is unethical for alcohol companies to profit from people’s addictions, but I don’t support prohibition, because this gives rise to worse consequences.
    The reason I gave broader cultural examples as well as referring to addictive individuals was to demonstrate that the problem is wider than that of individual addiction. Individual addictions are the most severe manifestations of the broader problem. More broadly, the problem expresses itself through the perpetuation of objectifying attitudes, an increase in social alienation, and the neglect of higher principals in favor of feeding the baser ones.
    I would actually like to see what would happen if you did go to an ethics class after they’d seen the actual content of your clips (something that has been rather obscured in this debate). Perhaps a few of the more crazy types of utilitarian’s would be on your side after all. But I think most deontological ethicists, virtue ethicists, and anyone coming from one of the major religious or the humanist traditions would be horrified.
    A better analogy than alcohol is tobacco. While most liberals would not support the prohibition of tobacco, most are relieved that tobacco advertising has been banned. They feel that such advertising is a cynical attempt on behalf of the tobacco industry to get people addicted to their product. I think a similar attitude would apply to your product. Let’s make no mistake, it is a lot more insidious than normal porn in the way it cultivates dependence. That said, I have no problem arguing that pornography in general implicitly degrades the viewer, as well as the participant or creator. Some of us just enjoy that degradation.
    I think you are confusing the ethical question with the legal one, in any case. In certain situations, although behavior may be unethical, it would be more problematic to attempt to make that behavior illegal, and so it is tolerated. I for one feel that is unethical for alcohol companies to profit from people’s addictions, but I don’t support prohibition, because this gives rise to worse consequences.

    Oh, here is a brief article on the neuroscience.;year=2011;volume=2;issue=1;spage=19;epage=19;aulast=Hilton

    I should point out the neuroscience can only show the physical process, not while it ethically wrong. For that we need broader discussion about ethics…

  12. cearalynch

    In regards to lust: the claim necessitates strict causality. To say that, “lust is detrimental to the human condition,” requires evidence based on lust in it of itself. Rape is not a product of lust in it of itself. People experience lust every day without ever raping anyone in their life. Rape is entirely optional, lust is not. I think the more appropriate claim you could make in regard to rape would be ,“lust has potentially negative consequences with those who have low morals and impulse control.” But to claim its detrimental to the human condition is a very narrow view that completely neglects the very pleasurable aspects of lust that most people experience.

    The article you posted talks about the effects of porn on an addict’s brain, not general human health… I still stand by the notion that most people who look at porn (which are most people in general) are perfectly healthy (or unhealthy for entirely different reasons.)

    “objectifying attitudes, an increase in social alienation, and the neglect of higher principals in favor of feeding the baser ones.”

    Where are you getting this information and how can you link it to the consumption of porn? I don’t see how you could. Its pretty much impossible to conduct any valid research on the affects of internet porn because it’s impossible to gather a control group of men who don’t look at internet porn.

    I have no reason to believe my videos cultivate dependence any more than any other type of porn. The vast majority of my customers buy a clip or two and nothing more. The average guy watching one of my clips would get nothing out of it except a good laugh. I think you’re taking this whole financial-ruin addiction-fantasy far too seriously. Almost every guy I’ve interacted with that’s into “financial domination” wants to spend $25 here and there and pretend as though I’m driving him to bankruptcy.

    Fair enough on the point about confusing ethics with legality. I can see how one could argue that what I do is unethical if it profits from addiction and dependence some people, even if they are the minority. However, I believe sex work in general (prostitution, stripping, porn stars, dominatrixes, cam girls, etc) is a necessary profession and does far more good in society than harm. The hetero-sexual male’s demand for sex far exceeds the hetero-sexual female’s desire to supply it for free. If men don’t have an easy access to get their needs met, there’s a much higher potential for seriously tragic consequences (as discussed in the first paragraph.)

    Also, for whatever its worth, although I’ve never had a classroom discussion about my profession in any ethics class, I have confided in a few teachers about what I do, two philosophy teachers (both taught some form of ethics) and one psychology, all three have seen my website and had no moral objection. One of the philosophy teachers specifically said, “although I don’t think you suffer from this, but I don’t think you should feel bad about what you do, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it.” While the (rather sex positive) psychology teacher described my profession as “important.” Admittedly, the other didn’t say much about it one way or the other, but I have little reason to believe that if he did have a strong opinion about it that he’d keep it to himself. I think you’re mistaken when you assume anyone not affiliated with this industry would automatically consider it morally objectionable.

    1. josh

      Thanks for your reply. I still don’t think your strict causal relationship is required for the claim “lust is detrimental to the human condition”. Though I think I should probably make further comment on the human condition, if I’m going to make this claim. We should also note that whether or not ‘lust is detrimental to the human condition in and of itself’ doesn’t necessarily have a bearing either way on the more particular ethical question at stake. I agree that as a general statement ‘lust is detrimental to the human condition’ cannot be proven with surveys etc, precisely because it requires value judgments that are not amenable to the empirical sciences in this direct way.
      You cited my statement regarding, “objectifying attitudes, an increase in social alienation, and the neglect of higher principals in favor of feeding the baser ones.” These are broadly sociological observations; I did not intend to assert that porn was itself the root cause of these factors. (causality again!) I just wanted to link these factors (and I don’t think these are controversial statements in contemporary sociology, by the way), with the consumption of porn. As I said in a previous statement, I think porn itself may be just as much a symptom of these factors, than they are the product of porn (dialectics again).
      You state, “But to claim its {lust} detrimental to the human condition is a very narrow view that completely neglects the very pleasurable aspects of lust that most people experience.”
      This is what happens when we don’t define the human condition. Notice how pleasure is elevated as something inherently positive to the ‘human condition’ in your statement. I think this is where Yosef was ultimately coming from. He didn’t want to elevate pleasure (or at least bodily pleasure) to the highest human good, he was not a utilitarian, and despite the reference to sublimation, he wasn’t a Freudian either (because ultimately for Freud too, what we all want is really just pleasure). I’m not a utilitarian or a Freudian either, I think if you elevate pleasure to the highest good you will not end up happy, and you will not fulfill your latent human potential. So I would say that to the extent that lust prevents you from reaching your latent higher potentials, like the development of your rationality etc, it is ‘detrimental to the human condition’. I don’t think this is a big claim, and I didn’t mean to make so much of it. Bad TV and junk food are also “detrimental to the human condition” in this sense, despite the pleasure they cause. I’m probably more of a humanist than a Christian, but I think it makes sense to claim that the other 6 deadly sins are also generally ‘detrimental to the human condition’. Honestly, I’m surprised people would even dispute this. I guess it just goes to show how far away we are from that heritage today. I should also say that I don’t think pleasure is bad of itself, I just think it becomes bad when it becomes intemperate, when it loses its proper place in the order of values and becomes elevated to the ultimate end. But it seems to me that excess, and intemperateness is inbuilt into the nature of lust. That’s why we distinguish lust from love. On a very general level, it also seems to me that we live in a society that is sick, precisely to the extent that it elevates material gain and material desires above all the other human values.
      I don’t think all of the above is really central to the question of whether it’s ethical to sell your clips or not, in any case. The whole ‘lust is detrimental to the human condition’ thing is a bit of a sidetrack. I think it’s interesting that on your intro page you say things like “I feel fine about what I’m doing” or something like that. This, combined with the fact that you have engaged in a long discussion with me, rather than ignoring or deleting my messages, seems to indicate that there may be a bit of moral ambivalence on your part. In any case, I applaud the fact that you are willing to think these things through at least. Ultimately, I think you have a false picture of human sexuality, and this is why you think your clips are ethically ok. Judging by your statements, you seem to think that there is a kind of base level of male sexuality, a quota of energy if you like, and this quota must simply be used up. If it is not used up, or if we attempt to repress it, bad things will happen, rapes etc will occur. This is actually an early modern view of sexuality, and it owes a lot to Freud, who basically transferred the dynamic energy model from Newton, and used it as a metaphor for sexuality. (Though I do note that you reject sublimation, and see that as another repression. Have you read Freud’s theory on how an analysand became obsessed with boots? It’s interesting though I don’t quite buy it. But in any case, your notion that a fetish is actually a great way to overcome an early trauma is straight out of Freud – though Freud would say it’s a maladaptive, rather than a great way to overcome anything). The problem is that this old view of sexuality tends to obfuscate the degree to which social forces are complicit in actually producing different forms of sexuality themselves. Foucault (a BDSM fanatic) was the guy who started off this vein of research, though it has come a long way since him. In relation to your clips, the point I’m making is perhaps more simple; they don’t work by allowing someone to expend a level of preexisting sexual energy in a harmless way, they instead work by generating more desire itself, so people who might have submissive inklings begin to develop a whole array of fetishes.
      You don’t seem to me to have much of a concept of what healthy sexuality actually is. It seems like you think that anything is ok, as long as it is kept as fantasy. I think this is a dangerous attitude, because it simplifies the relationship between reality and fantasy in the minds of human beings. I don’t think it is only addicts who ‘confuse’ reality and fantasy, which leads to behavioral problems, (though it is only people in the midst of psychosis in which the boundary breaks down completely.) I think this is too simple a conception, because it ignores how everyone’s lives are mediated in various ways by their imaginations. We don’t live in a reality, and then have a fantasy escape world that bears zero relation to it, the two worlds are mutually informing. That’s why, to make my broader point, I referenced Tom Wolfe’s research into the way porn had seeped into the imagination of college kids. In contemporary society, extreme violence and pornography is becoming increasingly normalized, and I don’t think this is a good thing.
      Now, I accept your criticism that I have made too big a thing of the financial ruin fetish. Doubtless I allowed my own psychology to cloud my judgment. There’s a hell of a lot worse stuff out there. But I wonder if you think that all fantasies are ok as long as they remain fantasies? I think someone who continually fantasizes about raping women, even if he does not engage in rape, is not engaging in healthy sexual activity. I gather from your general points that you’d disagree with this? I would also like to assert that someone who continually fantasizes about rape is more likely, rather than less likely to rape someone. This shows the error of of the energy model you seem to rely on. It does seem to me also that the financial domination community has followed a trajectory in which more extreme content has steadily appeared. Wank more and more, eat your own shit, give us everything etc… I think this correlates with the general pattern of sex addiction and the process of conditioning. People need more extreme content to get the same effects of earlier content. I think you underestimate the amount of people with these addictions too. Porn addiction has become something just about every shrink has to deal with at some point now, in the pre Internet age it was relatively rare. So I’ll have to continue to insist that rather than providing a new outlet for men of low morals to get rid of some excess sexual energy so they don’t rape people, internet porn instead cultivates addictions and creates a host of new psychological problems.

      *You should read the last interview with Ted Bundy for a rather harrowing account of the potential of violent porn more generally. Though I obviously don’t compare your stuff to really violent porn.

      1. josh

        Oh and for documentation of the reality of these new psychological problems, see Carnes ‘In the Shadows of the Net”. I’m also about the read “Wired for Intimacy” “How Porn Hijacks the Male Brain” by Struthers. Judging by the content description, this book goes into the neuroscience considerably, including help on ‘rewiring the brain’. The scientist who wrote this appears to be Christian, and combines his scientific reflections with theological ones. Although I don’t practice Christianity, one aspect of the Christian tradition I do agree with is that we should not look at others in terms of their utility alone. This has been co-opted into the secular tradition of course, beginning with Kant’s idea of treating people as ‘ends in themselves’. I think the argument from neuroscience that porn causes men to objectify women by changing the structure of their brains has been demonstrated. It is definitely not akin to objectifying someone by asking them for directions.

        Here is a brief description of part of the book from Amazon, it seems relevant to our discussion.

        “Pornography is hard to define, and therefore hard to legally restrict. Those who produce it claim to be exercising their first amendment rights. Their materials are not harmful, they argue, since all participants are consenting adults. Moreover, they say, you can’t prove that porn causes men a host of social, psychological, emotional, and spiritual problems (to say nothing of the problems for women). With the Internet comes access, affordability, and anonymity. In addition, the Internet provides opportunities for communication (chat rooms) and connecting with others (hook up sites). Chapter 2 discusses porn’s corruption of intimacy. Rather than sexual intimacy between a husband and wife in a maturing healthy relationship, a man learns to focus on the physiology of sexual sensations detached from any significant relationship. This brings shame, increasing loneliness, and less libido for their wives (or girlfriends). Chapter 3 expands on these consequences. Chapter 4 goes into how a man’s brain is wired and how porn use creates neural pathways in a man’s brain that train his process of arousal.”

        Hard not to think of all the humiliation clips about “you’d rather look at me than fuck your wife”, with regard to this. Not to mention all the sincere confessions from subs that they can in fact, no longer make love to their wives. But according to Ceara, this is all honky dory, no ethical concerns here.

        1. cearalynch

          This debate is becoming more and more convoluted. Needlessly so. I think I can boil your argument down to two general points, one which I agree with and the other I don’t. It sounds to me that you take issue with both the quality and quantity of porn consumption. In terms of quantity, you have no argument from me. Of course too much of anything is a bad thing. If you’re jerking off to the point that it’s disrupting important aspects of your life, you need to seek help. I would never try to assert that jerking off is the “highest” good. Of course it isn’t. I think I more or less said that to Yosef when I said,

          “As long as the majority can enjoy it safely and without any serious detriment to their lifestyle then there is no problem.”

          The thing about porn is that it’s very difficult to study the effects of it because it’s impossible to find a control group (i.e. men who don’t look at porn.) One thing I think we can all agree upon is that the entire male population has not suddenly neglected their responsibilities and goals to compulsively jerk off to porn. I’d say the vast majority of men are capable of integrating it into their lives without much disruption. Are there exceptions to this? Obviously. But that inclination toward excess clearly lies in the nature of certain individuals, not lust in it of itself, as you say.

          As far as the quality of porn (“quality” meaning the subject matter) this is where you and I disagree. The type of porn a guy jerks off to really says nothing about that person except what happens to make his dick hard. Some guys like being humiliated because they were humiliated all their lives. Others like it because they’re in a position of power almost all of the time and being degraded is a strange taboo that works for them. Further more, men who jack off to my “me vs. your wife” type clips tells us nothing about the type of relationship they have with their wives, or if they’re even married (I know for a fact some unmarried subs have bought those clips because they simply get off on the fact that I’m an “evil bitch,” just like you.)

          People are strange complex creatures and sexuality is a reflection of that. It’s much too easy to assume a dark, atypical fetish automatically equates a person who is struggling desperately in life.

          You’re correct that I believe as long as a fantasy stays a fantasy there’s nothing wrong with. There’s nothing unhealthy or harmful about the images that flash through person’s head when they’re jerking off. Having a rape fantasy doesn’t make someone more likely to rape because what one fantasies about says absolutely nothing about their level morality. I’d also argue that many rapists probably don’t have rape fantasies. The type of rape people fantasize about, which usually involve a physical power struggle, look nothing like most real rape in which the victim disassociates mentally to cope with the trauma, leaving the rapist to rationalize that he didn’t actually commit a rape because if he had surely she wouldn’t have just “gave in.”

          Even if a rape fantasy does make one more likely to rape, the answer is not, “don’t think about rape when you jerk off.” That’s completely unrealistic. Fantasies and fetishes don’t go away. Women’s sexuality tends to be more fluid but when it comes to men they are hard wired to like what they like. All of the issues you describe that you’re blaming porn for (to whatever degree) have solutions that don’t involve rewiring a man’s brain to jerk off to something else. We need to put our focus on what we can change, not what we can’t. Changing the compulsion habits in certain individuals is doable. Teaching people the difference between porn and reality is doable. Creating a society where women and sex workers are treated respect so that women in general aren’t objectified is doable. Having realistic expectations about marriage and monogamy without letting normal urges destroy is all is doable.

          Changing what makes a man’s dick hard is not.

  13. josh

    Yes, I tend to convolute my arguments because the reality is I’m a pathetic stroke zombie. I just like to sit here wearing panties and thinking about what a loser I’am. I concede that not only you are unattainably hot; you are intellectually and logically superior to me in everyway. The only reasonable thing for me to do now would be to give you all my money while I continue to stroke off. You are a real Goddess and you deserve it. Nothing gives me more pleasure than acknowledging the objective fact of your superiority to me while I sit here and jerk off. That’s the type of life I want more than anything to lead. I don’t get paid till Thursday so I’ll have to wait until then to send you your money. I can’t wait to buy up some clips, especially blackmail clips. I’m really desperate to send you pics so you see how much of a loser I really am.

    Josh O’Rourke

    1. josh

      The above comment is a result of a typical conflict between man’s rational desires, and his pleasure-seeking desires, of which I will speak more later. It is also an example of the absurdity of your last statement. While my dick was certainly very hard when I wrote that, if I had read or written it 10 years ago, while at the biological height of my sexual capacities, I would have found it more weird than exciting. However, after a decade of worshipping dommes and humiliation porn, my sexuality has been conditioned to find such talk highly arousing. Doubtless there are some very interesting things in my psychology that drove me into this (I’ve explored them in therapy, actually). But the fact remains, if I had not made those initial choices, my sexuality could have been shaped in a very different way. I also have faith that can be unshaped through hard work. Though I suspect a core submissiveness will always remain, and I don’t find this morally objectionable.

      I agree that humans are complex creatures, and that some of us are prone to the pursuit and cultivation of an inner darkness. I also think that we are psychologically complex in ways that belie the simplicity of your arguments. Your reference to being ‘hard-wired’, in a certain way, for instance, is an old fashioned concept that the more contemporary notion of neuroplasticity implicitly challenges. We are just about at the point of exhausting this. Though I don’t think we will agree, or convert each other to the opposite side, we might be able to clarify where exactly we differ.

      I agree your distinction between the qualitative and quantative is important. I certainly do think that many people can function while still occasionally watching porn. However, I don’t think the fact people can be high functioning porn consumers proves that porn is not intrinsically detrimental to the human condition. I didn’t actually assert that you thought wanking was the highest good either. Though it does seem that there is a classical conception of the good life lurking in your words. You seem to agree that a good life is defined by a kind of harmony with regard to all the different drives. This is straight out of Plato, incidentally. But where we differ is that you think porn can be incorporated into this harmoniousness. I think this is logically incoherent. I took up a defense of the claim that ‘lust is detrimental to the human condition’, to argue that in effect there was something intrinsically wrong with porn. That porn is, as it were, intrinsically inharmonious. I also wanted to separate this broader philosophical question from the particular ethical question regarding your clips. We both agreed that the notion that ‘lust is detrimental to the human condition’ rests on some notion of the human condition. And we seem to agree that what is good for the human condition involves some kind of harmony and order, in which individual goals are arranged properly. You acknowledged that porn addiction was a problem insofar as it impeded other aspects of one’s life and goals. However, your claim is that since it is clear empirically, that many people who watch porn still function adequately, the problem cannot be with the porn itself, but rather other factors in the individuals psychology. Which absolves porn of any responsibility, as you see it. You also claim that there is no correlation between the type of porn someone watches and their psychological and ethical make-up. With the first of these points, I think you have not seen the logical force of the argument as it proceeds from a definition of the human condition. (I think you’d be better off contesting this definition itself) With regards to the rest of your points, I think you ignore contemporary research on the actual nature of sexuality, as well as its relation to human psychology.

      With regard to the broader issue, I feel I’m obliged to say a bit more about the human condition. It seems the concept of ‘moderation’ has emerged as something important, and I think it is, however I don’t think that this is sufficient in itself. We need to say more about the master value, which I previously cited as ‘cultivation of rationality’ or art or something like that. I think one can live a life of moderation that is still ethically reprehensible. If one is living an extremely temperate life, while quietly going about their task of abolishing the Jewish race for instance, I think this would be an ethically bad person. Or a less extreme example; I think anyone who makes material prosperity the primary goal of their existence is doing something ethically erroneous. If one lives a moderate life, which is financed by the suffering of others, I think that is ethically wrong.

      Now I need to say a bit more about the argument from the intrinsic inharmoniousness of lust, which you were right to focus on, as I didn’t spell it out before. Since I have defined the good life as the harmonious integration of desires under a leading principal of rational cultivation, anything that upsets this harmoniousness will be detrimental to the human condition. Logically, the experience of lust, which involves the excitation of appetitive desire, is inharmonious by its very nature. Lust is frenzied by nature, and it is this frenzy that is itself pleasurable. But according to the definition of the human condition as the cultivation of rational harmony, anything that by its very nature produces frenzy is going to be detrimental to the human condition. This is all I was trying to say in the earlier statements, not that you thought wanking was the highest good.

      The other thing that stifles harmony is conflict. One of the big problems with porn is that it can cause a conflict between men’s sexual desires, and his rational ones. (see above) One may have a strong morality, which would prevent you from raping someone. But the fact that you are indulging in a fantasy about something that is contrary to your morality is going to be problematic for most people. If someone is constantly fantasizing about rape, they are constantly objectifying women in their minds. I would argue, that even if their morality makes them refrain from raping someone, there is going to be a conflict between the desire to rape and the desire to treat woman as an ethical equal. Being so conflicted in detrimental to the human condition. The fact that the rational desire ultimately wins does not mean that person is living harmoniously, or that they have a healthy sexuality. But your too simplistic view of the nature of fantasy precludes you from seeing this point. As I’ve said before, you seem to claim that a person’s fantasy life has no relation to his or her psychology. This is absurd, and your only basis for making this claim seems to be that people with the same fantasies can have different psychologies. This is undoubtedly true, but it only means that there exist a multiplicity of different relations between people’s fantasies and their psychology, not that there is no relation at all. Again, I’d encourage you to read the last interview with Ted Bundy to see potentially where rape fantasies can lead.

      One of the conditions of having a healthy sexuality, I would say, is the absence of such conflict. Of course this is not the only condition, one could have no conflict at all about the fact that one continually fantasizes about rape, because one has no morality. But I would also argue that having no morality is something else ‘detrimental to the human condition’. And of course sometimes people may experience conflict where there is no need, as in certain homosexuals who feel that homosexuality is wrong. But this only indicates the complex interweaving of social forces with our sexuality. I’ve stressed this before, as it gives the lie to your implicit notion of all the natural, inevitable, ‘hardwired’ things about sex.

      One part of your statement that I have to completely reject is the idea that the type of porn one jerks off too bears no relation to your personhood. I think ones sexual proclivities are always revealing of one’s psychology. This does not imply, mind you, that there has to be some universal story regarding specific types of porn and specific types of people. That would be equally as absurd as saying the sex bears no relation to psychology. (Foucault, who I cited for a different reason, earlier, may well disagree with me here) People can have the same fetishes for very different reasons, but these reasons doubtless will have some bearing on their psychology, so that their sexuality is still a clue to their being. Furthermore, sexual fantasy itself may exhibit a different function in different people’s psychic economies. For some it may be irrevocably caught up in their identities, for others it may be less so. But none of this is grounds for jettisoning psychology altogether, or holding onto the idea that we innocently fantasize in a void that bears no relation whatsoever to the rest of our lives.

      The key for me is that porn works by inciting sexual appetites. The brain scans actually show that the appetitive centre of the brain, a part of the hypothalamus, lighting up like a Christmas tree when someone is watching porn. The nature of porn is addictive, and destructive, even if some people can avoid these consequences through the exertion of stronger desires they may have.

      1. josh

        Yes, i’m rather conflicted. I’ve always thought if i could just get rid of one my desires, i’d be much happier. Namely, i either quit the fetish (which i’m trying to do), or i give up on all my rational idealistic dreams, and concentrate on being a pervert. Both are extremely difficult options, but for me they seem the only way to resolve a conflict i find intolerable.

    1. cearalynch

      Not really.

      I never argued that one’s sexuality bears zero relation to their psychology. Of course it does. My point is that it bears to predictive relation. As you seem to agree with. Meaning, one can have a strange fetish and be perfectly normal and healthy in every other regard. If they’re not, that’s an issue that needs to be addressed outside of one’s fantasy, because that fantasy isn’t going anywhere.

      Furthermore, I see no reason why one who has a rape fantasy has to live in any kind of conflict. Plenty of women have rape fantasies too. Why not simulate it with one of them? Real rape is about consent, of course, but fantasy rape is about power play, which plenty of people get off on. When two consenting adults can engage in something they find mutually pleasurable, I see no conflict.

      Many of the issues you bring up can be solved with simple compartmentalization. What exactly is so wrong with objectification in the right circumstances and why is it so impossible to recognize those appropriate circumstances? I want to be objectified when I’m having sex. My partner can view as a “whole” person any other time. You seem to think that if one objectifies a woman when he jacks off, that he will inevitably objectify all women all the time. I don’t think you’re giving your gender enough credit.

      1. josh

        I could answer your question about objectification from a number of different perspectives. One would be to say, and this comes out of a lot of religious understandings of sex, that when we objectify, even in mutually consenting sexual relations, we are losing something of the sacred bond of what sex could potentially be. On this view, objectification corrodes intimacy.

        However, I feel uncomfortable taking this position, not because I think it is invalid, but simply because I’ve never experienced the type of intimacy they are talking about. So it would be hypocritical of me to argue on that basis.

        The problem with porn use is precisely that it erodes compartmentalization. There is this interesting bit of Tom Wolfe’s account of his time spent with college kids, where one kid comes in complaining he desperately needs some porn. Another kid then says “why worry, the cum-dumpsters will be around here soon anyway” or something to that effect. The other kid is not satisfied by this, and still wants porn. What was interesting to Wolfe, was not just that the appetite for porn had become more than a supplement for actual sex, but a pleasure elevated above it, but that their imaginations were so porn-seeped that they only saw women as ‘cum-dumpsters’ or sexual objects. Now doubtless these kids are sons with mothers and sisters. I bet they don’t always objectify women in this way. But nonetheless I think it’s fair to link porn consumption into the more frequent use of this kind of language. And I personally see something wrong with this, I think this kind of objectification is unhealthy, and implicitly degrades the value of women. Perhaps you don’t, or you disagree that porn plays any role in this kind of attitude. I think the very fact that porn use changes the structure of your brain is telling us that it is having a negative effect on our ability to compartmentalize.

        Also, I don’t quite agree with the statement that there is zero predictive relationship between sexual fantasy and psychology; I would say that there is not a necessary relationship, but I would think there could be some general patterns emerge. I look forward to Thursday.

        1. josh

          I do think your comments about enacting the rape fantasy in a healthy way are interesting. They actually reminded me of an idea that Foucault writes about, regarding BDSM as a form of play, in which strategic power transference occurs, and people are able to manipulate and transform their identities for pleasure. I used to possess an article by Bob Plant, it was called “Playing Games – Playing us” and he critiqued Foucault for being morally ambivalent in this area. But I can’t find it for the life of me, and it costs money to download. In any case, I don’t think this problematises my overall point. Because I didn’t claim that violent fantasies always inevitably lead to rape, or that people always felt conflicted about them. I just claimed that morally ambiguous fantasies often lead to a conflict between the rational and desiring part of the individual. But I do think that sexual fantasies are psychologically revealing, and that there is a relation between fantasies and other symptoms and traits. What the nature of this relation is, is precisely the question for psychologists to answer in individual cases. I also wonder whether you’d be willing to extend your feeling that what goes through the mind of people having an orgasm is of no consequence to those people who masturbate to thoughts of abusing children? I would assert that it is both unhealthy and morally wrong to fantasize about abusing kids, but I take it that you wouldn’t? I must say, I’m inclined to reject any ethical system that says it’s ok to wank over thoughts of abusing children, as wrongheaded from the start.

          I don’t understand why you are so insistent that the ’fantasy is not going anywhere’; it seems to me fantasies come and go, sometimes of their own accord. I used to be obsessed with facesitting, but I’m not any more. This may have actually been a case where realizing the fantasy destroyed its power, or it may be a part of the addictive cycle of needing more extreme acts of humiliation to be aroused. In either case, there was nothing permanent about it. You could, I suppose, argue that despite the changing fantasies, one retains a “fundamental fantasy” that never changes. This is actually argued by followers of Lacan. However, you have to go to France to hear this stuff taken seriously.

          At the beginning I said that I was not opposed to femdom generally, but rather to commodification. (This is also probably why I’m sympathetic to your description of people enacting a rape fantasy together) You could argue the ethical picture I presented was incompatible with this statement. It would be at least challenging, though perhaps not impossible, to create a femdom style relationship within a temperate, harmonious and rational existence.

          I still feel the same about commodification by the way. And I think the arguments about the essentially destructive and addictive nature of porn hold. One thing we haven’t talked about is how it is not just people (like me) with rotten childhoods, self-destructive personalities and a history of mental illness and substance abuse, that get addicted to porn. The evidence suggests that people who have been hitherto free of mental problems are also prone to addiction. I still don’t think it’s ethically right to profit off porn, just as I don’t think casino’s are ethically sound institutions. That said, I’d get a lot more enjoyment out of giving you my money than putting it in a slot machine.

  14. lil

    ” the homosexuals might perfectly do well in this world if their love did not escalate to anal or oral penetration using the device created for procreation and urination.” Is this guy for real? I’d love to challenge the idea that he himself hasn’t used the “device created for procreation” by sticking his condom-wrapped penis inside of a woman for pleasure in his lifetime.

  15. Demon

    “The average guy watching one of my clips would get nothing out of it except a good laugh. I think you’re taking this whole financial-ruin addiction-fantasy far too seriously.”

    Yep. She’s right. I can concur. I got a good laugh.

    You people DO realize that Ceara does not actually act or speak like the way that she does on the internet, or in any of her clips in real life and is simply fufiling a clientele requested role for business purposes, right?

    You do realize that all of her “slaves”, “subs”, “bitches” etc are not actually “owned” and are free to go when they stop paying her right?

    She doesn’t actually “own” or “control” anyone.

    I’m pretty sure that slavery is illegal in this country.

    Why does she act like an “evil bitch” on the internet, in interviews, on the radio, and essentially any other venue where she is marketing?

    Because it’s business and she has an image to sell that appeals to her consumers.

    Anyone who cannot seperate “reality” from “fantasy” and actually does anything that she says in her video clips, in real life, (killing someone, stealing money, etc) obviously has unresolved issues that need to be rectified.

    That has absolutely nothing to do with her.

    She isn’t exactly obligated to ask all of her clients if they are mentally ill, or if they have struggled with some degree of addiction in the past.

    She is not a doctor and possesses no Ph.D. She cannot be sued for malpractice if someone watches her “Kill Your Parents” clip and then goes out of their way to murder their mother and father.

    The same way you cannot sue a rap artist if a kid watches a music video of a rapper partaking in criminal activity/rapping about it and then goes out and does it.

    The same way that you cannot sue a tabacco company (anymore) if you smoke a cigarette and get cancer. They warn you on the package.

    Cigerettes cause cancer. [Fact]
    Porn CAN (not will) evoke addiction among other things.

    But as Ceara also stated, too much of anything is bad.

    Moderation is key for all intents and purposes.

    As hard as I trolled her inbox a couple of hours ago, even I am not delusional enough to take anything that she does or says on her social media, in her clips, on her twitter, and online in general personally.

    It’s porn.
    It’s the internet.
    She’s a human being and like me, and anyone else can be a douchebag when pushed past our breaking point (whether that be in response to stupidity or trolling) but that is a completely different topic and unrelated to the OP.

    Reiteration: We don’t get butthurt or stay butthurt over trival shit and are capable of discerning between reality and fantasy.

    With that being said, Ceara isn’t really a pornstar. She doesn’t get naked or have unadulterated penetration sex on camera. She’s a fetish model and a Domme (several forms).

    It’s ‘fantasy’.

    And even if what she were doing were objectively unethical and immoral, that would be her business and her own proverbial Scarlet Letter. No one elses.

    Anyone who gets butthurt over anything that she does or says online while she is “working” should not be associated with her to begin with.

    Ceara uses Twitter to work, not socialize. I know exactly why she blocked me. Because she was trying to portray herself in a certain manner to one of her clientele, attempted to initate a business transaction, and I came along and trolled it.

    She is doing a job.

    She is not anyone’s parent, keeper, or role model. Nor was she called to be.

    I am certain that she has her clientele sign some sort of consent form prior to engaging within any type of business > clientele relationship.

    She is a Humiliatrix, the supplier. She does not approach.

    Vanilla capitalism. This is America.

    I’m sure if she were breaking any laws, she would have been issued a subpoena and have been sanctioned by now. She is not a monopoly.

    All she has done is create a market for individuals who have been programmed to feel ashamed towards their sexuality and provide them an outlet through which they may fufil those urges without causing anyone around them harm.

    Whether or not she is breaking a code of ethics is subjective. No human being can make an objective claim objectively without being pretentious. Human beings are subjective.

    It is not our place to convict. That is why there is no uniform code of morality that exists within society today.

    Masturbation, orgasms, and porn like anything else, in moderation is perfectly healthy.

    Like water. You drink to much and you can drown.

    No one can dispute that. This is not worthy of discourse in my opinion.

    Ceara is a human being at the end of the day, like all the rest of us.

    Falliable, inquisitive, and made a name for herself legit.

    All trolling aside, work is work.

    I couldn’t sit my ass at a PC for hours on end doing the shit that she does.

    Live and let live.

    We are all different for a reason.

    Started her own business and it blew up lucratively.

    Six figure salary. Nuff said.

    Capitalism is Capitalism.

    But I digress,

    All of this conspiracy theorism being perpetuated in this comments section has absolutely nothing to do with the OP.

    The OP is subjective, and is based solely upon anecdotal evidence.


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