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FutureStarrIs Masturbation a Sin
Let’s be clear, masturbation is an act of instant, self-gratification. It is quite the opposite of the self-control that we are constantly reminded of in the Bible. Self-control is an act of obedience to our Holy God and a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) an act that requires restraint, thought, intentionality, and delayed gratification.
Immanuel Kant, (who was raised as a Pietist), when writing on masturbation, argued that "...the question here is whether the human being is subject to a duty to himself with regard to this enjoyment, violation of which is a defiling (not merely a debasing)" of the humanity in his own person. The impetus to this pleasure is called carnal lust (or also simply lust). The vice engendered through it is called lewdness; the virtue with regard to this sensuous impulse is called chastity, which is to be represented here as a duty of the human being to himself. Lust is called unnatural if one is aroused to it not by a real object but by his imagining it, so that he himself creates one, contrary to [natural] purpose; for in this way imagination brings forth a desire contrary to nature's end, and indeed to an end even more important than that of love of life itself, since it aims at the preservation of the whole species and not only of the individual. That such an unnatural use (and so misuse) of one's sexual attribute is a violation of duty to oneself, and indeed one contrary to morality in its highest degree, occurs to everyone immediately, with the thought of it, and stirs up an aversion to this thought to such an extent that it is considered indecent even to call this vice by its proper name. But it is not so easy to produce a rational proof that unnatural, and even merely unpurposive, use of one's sexual attribute is inadmissible as being a violation of duty to oneself (and indeed, as far as its unnatural use is concerned, a violation in the highest degree). — The ground of proof is, indeed, that by it man surrenders his personality (throwing it away), since he uses himself merely as a means to satisfy an animal impulse. But this does not explain the high degree of violation of the humanity in one's own person by such a vice in its unnaturalness, which seems in terms of its form (the disposition it involves) to exceed even murdering oneself. It consists, then, in this...unnatural lust, makes man not only an object of enjoyment but, still further, a thing that is contrary to nature, that is, a loathsome object, and so deprives him of all respect for himself."
The sexual sins of fornication, adultery and masturbation, as well as hatred, jealousy, drunkenness and other sins are considered to be sins of the heart as much as the body. It is thought that turning away from sexual sin is turning away from self-indulgence for the purpose of self gratification. Instead of turning to the desires of the flesh, the Orthodox Christian turns to the Holy Spirit, whose fruit is believed to be love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)