July 20, 2016

Dual Uses

I confess to sometimes feeling the temptation of seeing God as a utilitarian, to see us as widgets in need of shaping before going to "market" (Heaven), with earthly life being that rather toilsome process.

It's surely a provincially human thing to see only half the equation, to fail to see that God prefers to accomplish multiple things with one action.  Jesus accomplished our redemption (a transactional concept) while simultaneously demonstrating his seemingly foolhardy love for us (irrational).  With God, the rational and irrational kiss, like mercy and justice.

You could look at the act of eating as merely fulfilling a bodily need for nutrition and sex as purely for procreation. These seem the utilitarian, mechanistic view of things. But why can't God make things for two (or more) uses?  The penis is an example of a dual-use instrument: you can (rationally) remove urine or in orgasm experience irrational pleasure.  Thus similarly intercourse, as the Church teaches, can be for procreation and unification.

Of course the materialist says the pleasure from eating or sex is merely an evolutionary enticement to accomplish the missions of growth and reproduction, but why can't it be that God prefers that we experience simultaneously pleasure and the utilitarian functions of feeding ourselves and continuing the species?

If God were interested in the utilitarian he'd have been happy with Paul, then Saul, who seemed a rather well-shaped Pharisee, rather than Mary Magdalene, who had issues.  The paradox is that love is the ultimate "product" He seeks, even though love is not a product in the way we think of it.

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