Unexpected Connection Found Between Pornography And Religious Beliefs (VIDEO)

It is pretty much accepted as fact that people who occasionally watch pornography tend to become less religious over time. RawStory reported that a new study aims to demonstrate a bizarre correlation between people becoming more religious as they indulge in higher rates of porn consumption.

Assistant Professor, Samuel Perry, of the University of Oklahoma designed the study which will be published in The Journal of Sex Research.

“While scholars typically assume that greater religiosity leads to less frequent pornography use, none have empirically examined whether the reverse could be true: that greater pornography use may lead to lower levels of religiosity over time,” Perry wrote

For the purpose of the study, Perry defined pornography as “sexually explicit material intended to arouse the viewer.” For a period of six years, Perry followed the same 1, 314 adults chosen to represent the U.S. population as a whole.

According to an article in PsyPost, the initial findings corroborated Perry’s assumption and subjects reported lower feelings of religiousness as their pornography exposure increased. At least, for a time.

“Pornography consumption was related to decreased subsequent religiousness until the rate of consumption became more frequent than about once a week, at which point increasing pornography became related to subsequent increases in religiousness,” the article stated. “These findings were the same for both men and women.”

From this information Perry concluded that some exposure to pornography may cause people to feel guilty about violating the rules of their religion. As a result they distance themselves from religious activities. Frequent pornography viewers, however, find ways of rationalizing the behavior they believe goes against their religious convictions.

This view is shared by clinical psychologist, Dr. David Ley, who has said there is no strong scientific research to suggest that pornography addiction exists. Rather, he says that people are more likely to claim an addiction to pornography when their religious values conflict with their desires. Ley appeared on an episode of Anderson to challenge the legitimacy of sex addiction.

Case Western Reserve University psychology researchers shared similar findings when examining the link between the perception of pornography addiction and religious beliefs.

“We were surprised that the amount of viewing did not impact the perception of addiction, but strong morals did,” lead research author, Joshua Grubbs said

Those who become more religious as a result of increased porn viewing may also be doing so out of a desire to seek atonement or overcome the habits and behaviors causing them to feel guilty because of their religious beliefs. The study noted that people who are driven closer to religion through heavy pornography viewing might be of particular interest to religious leaders.

For Dr. David Ley’s appearance on Anderson, see video below:

Featured Image by Mustafa Aydinol via Flickr under Creative Commons