Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness Key to Understanding God's Original Plan Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness “the man and his wife were both naked; and were not ashamed” (Gn 2:25)
Pope John Paul II says this is “precisely the key” for understanding God’s original plan for human life
How do we…driving on “flat tires”…experience “original nakedness” and thereby understand the meaning of human life? Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness We look at our own experience of shame and “flip it over”
A woman doesn’t feel the need to cover her body when she’s alone in the shower. But if a strange man burst into the bathroom she would. Why?
Pope John Paul proposes that “shame” in this sense is a form of self-defense against being treated as an object of sexual use.
The woman covers her body not because it’s “bad” or “shameful.” Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness She covers herself to protect her own dignity from the stranger’s “lustful look”—a look that fails to respect her God-given dignity as a person. Lust : Lust So, what is “lust”?
Lust refers to sexual desire devoid of God’s love.
Lust leads a person toward self-gratification at the expense of the other
Love, on the other hand, leads a person toward self-donation for the good of the other.
Lust, therefore, is a reduction of the original fullness God intended for the sexual relationship. Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness So…take the experience of fear (shame) in the presence of another person and “flip it over.”
We now arrive at Adam and Eve’s experience of nakedness without shame.
Lust (self-seeking sexual desire) hadn’t yet entered the human heart.
Our first parents experienced a total defenselessness in each other’s presence because the other’s look posed no threat whatsoever to their dignity. Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness Pope John Paul poetically expresses this…
“they see and know each other”
“with all the peace of the interior gaze”
The “interior gaze” indicates not only the sight of a body, but a body that reveals a personal and spiritual mystery.
Adam & Eve saw God’s plan of love (theology) inscribed in their naked bodies and that’s exactly what they desired—to love as God loves in and through their bodies! Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness And there is no fear (shame) in love.
“Perfect love casts out fear” (1 Jn 4:18)
This is why “nakedness without shame” is the key for understanding God’s plan for our lives—it reveals the original truth of love.
God created sexual desire “in the beginning” to be the very power to love as He loves—in a free, sincere, and total gift of self. Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness Free, sincere, and a total gift of self…
This is how Adam & Eve experienced it!
Sexual desire wasn’t felt as a compulsion or instinct for selfish gratification.
The experience of lust comes only with the dawn of sin.
Lust is a result of “flat-tire syndrome”! Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness Only a person who is free from the compulsion of lust is capable of being a true “gift” to another.
The “freedom of the gift” is freedom to bless, which is the freedom from the compulsion to grasp and possess.
Unfortunately, as a result of sin, our experience of sex has become terribly distorted.
In the midst of these distortions, we can tend to think that there must be something wrong with sex itself (“body-bad/sex-dirty” mentality). Original Nakedness : Original Nakedness But the distortions we know so well are not at the core of sex.
At the core of sex we discover a sign of God’s own goodness.
Christ came to restore creation to the purity of its origin.
“Already but not yet fully”…our eschatological reality.