Christian living and nudity in art - does it conflict?

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  • When it comes to the morality of images, what really matters is the intention of the image. In general, if an image was created for an immoral reason, the image is immoral. Also, if the thing depicted is immoral, the image is immoral. Nudity is not an inherently immoral thing (if it were, Adam and would never have been allowed to be naked), so depicting it is not inherently immoral.

    What is immoral is public indecency, which is not the same thing. Public indecency is effectively being naked in front of someone whom you should not be naked in front of. For example, nudity of a child does not scandalize the parents, but it is a cause for scandal to someone else.

    The issue with depictions of nudity is a combination of gratuitousness and intention. For example, if the nudity is extreme (such as a depiction of intercourse), it becomes indecent, since it might very easily scandalize someone. In the same way, a depiction of war is fine so long as the gore is not excessive. The intention is what makes all pornography sinful, even if the performer is clothed and alone. Viewing things that were made with immoral intention knowing that they were made with immoral intention is immoral, and, of course, making something with an immoral intention is immoral.

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    • What about students working from a nude model, or working as a nude model? That would mean posing nude.

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      • Again, it is a matter of prudency. It can be prudent to serve as a nude model. It can also be imprudent. It depends mostly on intentions, in that case. The intention can be perfectly moral, or it could be a lustful, evil one. It just depends. And, of course, if the artist's intention is known by the model to be immoral, then it is immoral for the model to participate, even with good intentions.

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    • You don't have that way of thinking when it comes to assaulting people, you sick fuck rapist.

      #Clunk42isarapist

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  • Being human conflicts with Christianity so I’m going to say yes.

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  • It's right to question it.

    I think it firstly depends on you. Are you ever likely to use those pictures to think dirty thoughts to, or to masturbate to? If your past experiences with accidental/artistic nudity have tended to make you feel turned-on then there's a chance you might do it one day when home alone and maybe under a lot of stress, or under the influence of alcohol or meds or whatever. In this case I'd advise you not to put naked pictures in your home. But then again, maybe artistic nudity doesn't normally turn you on, in which case...

    It secondly depends on the other Christians in your home. They might be less secure in their faith than you, see the naked pictures, and be like 'since such-and-such has naked pictures in his home, then that means there's nothing even potentially wrong with it'. And they might follow your example when they themselves can't enjoy the pictures responsibly and don't have the maturity to realise it.

    It thirdly depends on anyone else who sees your home. When they put naked pictures in their home, those pictures are probably fair game to think dirty thoughts about or masturbate to if they want to, and so they might assume that you'd treat yours that way too. In some respects it doesn't matter what other people think of you, but on the other hand we do have a responsibility to avoid potentially misrepresenting our way of life to the world. It's better that you be poked fun at for something you actually do, rather than just what they think you do. Then at least you are sending out a clear message about the life you lead.

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    • I wasn't thinking of what is in artworks themselves so much as artists and students working from nude models, or working as a nude model.

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      • The same applies, really - albeit transposed a bit in its terms:

        1) Is the artist able to do their art without using the memories for titillation?

        2) Could Christians who are less strong in their faith and less aware of their own personal weaknesses be led astray by the practice directly or indirectly - whether they are the models, the viewers or fellow artists?

        3) Is the artist content in their own conscience about what this activity says about what following Christ authentically really looks like to people who don't know much about Christian living, or who have maybe picked up misconceptions about it or been exposed to bad examples in the past?

        I wouldn't say that these considerations are excessive. Self-reflexive thinking about art, its message and the role and responsibilities of the artist is indispensable in the 21st century. I would say that at least all postmodern art has considerations like these as its bedrock, whether the artists are Christians or not. Albeit nude drawings aren't postmodern art in themselves, but besides the need to think 'Christianly' about art, it is never a bad idea to be aware of where your work will 'land' with people.

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  • Praise Jesus for making the female form just so great

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  • No lots of biblical images have breasts out

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