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? for conservative religious folks:does your faith influence your media choices?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Note: by "conservative religious folks," I mean Christians, Jews, and Muslims who believe and follow their faith's traditional doctrines.

Does how you believe influence what you watch/read/listen to? It does for me.

I'm always surprised when people who say they are really conservative in belief and practice mention they watch raunchy movies/listen to really vulgar, explicit music. The two just don't go together for me.

ETA: I'm referring to adults, not children, here. ;-)

I'll come back to this later - have to leave for work now!
post #2 of 13
It's influencing more and more. I find myself getting really uncomfortable with things that didn't use to bother me. Shows I used to watch with no problem really make me uncomfortable now (like Robot Chicken, oh my!)

I'm still working on stopping my own cussing, but I find that even excessive cussing is starting to bother me.

I still love horror movies, though! :
post #3 of 13
Absolutely. I believe that anything that goes into your mind stays there, makes its imprint, and affects you, changes you even. We have an absolutely-no-rated-R-movie policy, and we hardly ever watch TV shows that are TV-14 (pretty much never.) With PG-13 movies it depends what it's PG-13 for.

But yeah, we definitely censor what we watch-- if it's too sexual or violent of a scene, we'll skip through to the next chapter or turn off the movie, depending on how bad it is.

We wind up watching a lot of family fare. But I feel good about it.
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tradd View Post
Does how you believe influence what you watch/read/listen to?
Yes, however...

Quote:
I'm always surprised when people who say they are really conservative in belief and practice mention they watch raunchy movies/listen to really vulgar, explicit music. The two just don't go together for me.
I don't view it as such a clear dichotomy.

I don't always expect to find a sound theological basis in music, television, or films. What I do watch and listen do, I enjoy for the sights and sounds, the humor and depth. Truth is Truth no matter where it is found, and I do believe that some really "vulgar" art forms can contain immense value and significant spiritual wisdom. Of course, I think critically about what I allow myself to absorb, and am careful about what I choose to ignore. I don't believe that it's an "all or nothing" affair, and that God gives us wisdom to decide what we personally are able to handle.
post #5 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by domesticzookeeper View Post
Yes, however...



I don't view it as such a clear dichotomy.

I don't always expect to find a sound theological basis in music, television, or films. What I do watch and listen do, I enjoy for the sights and sounds, the humor and depth. Truth is Truth no matter where it is found, and I do believe that some really "vulgar" art forms can contain immense value and significant spiritual wisdom. Of course, I think critically about what I allow myself to absorb, and am careful about what I choose to ignore. I don't believe that it's an "all or nothing" affair, and that God gives us wisdom to decide what we personally are able to handle.
:
it's just not the same for everyone. we all interpret different forms of media differently. if i don't feel good about something i'm watching, i won't, but i don't think there is a difference between what i don't feel comfortable with and what someone else might.
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by domesticzookeeper View Post
Yes, however...



I don't view it as such a clear dichotomy.

I don't always expect to find a sound theological basis in music, television, or films. What I do watch and listen do, I enjoy for the sights and sounds, the humor and depth. Truth is Truth no matter where it is found, and I do believe that some really "vulgar" art forms can contain immense value and significant spiritual wisdom. Of course, I think critically about what I allow myself to absorb, and am careful about what I choose to ignore. I don't believe that it's an "all or nothing" affair, and that God gives us wisdom to decide what we personally are able to handle.
I guess the example I have in mind is an extreme one. Several years ago friends tried to set me up with a friend of theirs who went to their church (we're all same denomination). I was struck hard by this guy's total lack of discernment in his media choices. He said he was very observant, conservative, etc., but the TV, movies, music, and video games he told me he regularly consumed, just floored me.

Turns out I encounter a lot of folks like this. The two just don't go together. I'm not talking about Harry Potter (something that religious folks have differing opinions on) or something borderline that might be fine for adults (not for kids), I'm talking about very mainstream films and TV shows that are really explicit. This guy was also listening to very hard core rap/hip hop (the real misogynous (sp?) stuff). But he's just one example.
post #7 of 13
There is a lot of popular media DH and I avoid, but we do not necessarily avoid anything which deals with sex in any way. Sex is part of life, and I think a Victorian attitude is not necessarily a "traditional Christian" one. Each film is a personal judgment call, though.

What we do avoid because of our religious beliefs are films which are either directly blasphemous, or in which God or Christ are portrayed by actors. We would find a raunchy movie far more acceptable than something like Oh God! or Bruce Almighty in which actors are playing the part of God. I know most people think those films are just cute and funny, but they are outside the pale for us. It does not only apply to comedies; we would not want to watch The Passion of the Christ either.

DH has commented on how weird it might seem to some people, to say "I might watch Cheerleaders Gone Wild, but never King of Kings! I'm a Christian!"
post #8 of 13
I'm moderate, but I'm finding that I'm not as tolerant as I was when I was younger (and I'm only 31). I'm not feeling the vulgarity in music, tv, and film as I used to. It's getting really extreme now. I mean, I'm still working on my profanity as well, but sometimes too much can be enough.
post #9 of 13
The closer I get to God the further I get away from stuff that's "bad"

course, I go back and forth like a yo-yo.
post #10 of 13
I do this with entertainment choices, but not news choices. My religious views are very conservative, but I vote mostly for extremely liberal candidates. My reasoning? I want to live in a country where everyone is free to practice their religion as they see fit, not just one faith ruling the rest with their doctrines.

Anyhow, so yes I do choose programs for myself and my family to watch that aren't as "worldly".
post #11 of 13
Can a Buddhist Pagan pop in with her POV even if she's not really conservative? I'm nice, I promise, and this topic is so relevant for me right now. If I am not the perspective you're looking for I can edit!

I've never cared for horror or violent movies much before I was religious/spiritually observant, but I find that my path is influencing my feelings a lot these days. I am find that I have become very sensitive to scenes/sounds/images of violence in a way that I hadn't really experienced before. I believe that it is related to my deeper understanding of being interconnected/not self and to the new ways I see (or try to see anyway) compassion, kindness, and peace. I do not just see some actress being harmed in a movie, I see my daughter or my best friend. I don't see some boy being beaten I see my son or my neighbor. I was watching a show I really love the other day, and found that I had to mute part of it because the "flash backs" of the crime involved the bad guys hurting animals and I was really struck by how awful that is.

I do not do censorship. We watch a lot of TV around here too. Our music is not censored, and I find that it bothers me less than images do. I do not find swear words to be contrary to my religious practices, but I do find saying really mean or unkind things to people to be contrary. I like some edgy music (think "Closer" by NIN or etc)

Sexual images in media also do not bother me for the most part. (Unless it's sexual violence.) Many shows feature characters that approach sexuality differently than I do, but that's okay with me because I do not expect the whole world to have the same approach in the first place. Sexuality is very personal and individual after all, and it doesn't bother me to see another style. So really for me it's violence/anger/cruelty that I see myself reacting to.
post #12 of 13
More and more I find my faith (Catholic) influencing my choices. I really don't enjoy the same movies or music that I used to, since now a lot of the gratuitous violence, sexuality, and foul language offend me. My TV viewing is mostly FoodTV and PBS these days. I don't watch the "news" on TV much, since it's mostly celebrity gossip and glamorizing crime and criminals and sensationalizing violence.
post #13 of 13
Violence and weirdness (psycho stuff) have always bothered me, and my church (LDS) has guidelines (semi-official) and I have personal guidelines that I just generally follow. I also have found that certain things bother me now that didn't used to--I've stopped watching all the CSI's on TV--they're just so loud and gory. One of our Articles of Faith summarizes part of my POV:

"If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."

I think different people have different tolerances for visual media. My kids seem to be extremely visually sensitive, especially one of them. So we've become even more conservative since having kids.
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