William Struthers, a neuroscientist and professor of psychology at Wheaton College, has written a book to help us avoid becoming seduced in a culture where pornography can invade our homes.
The bad news, he argues in Wired for Intimacy: How Pornography Hijacks the Male Brain (InterVarsity), is that the human brain can be chemically hijacked by pornography.
The good news is that the apostle Paul was right: The brain can be transformed by a renewed commitment to sanctification. Yes, I mean the brain, not just the mind. This book demonstrates that, while the process of transformation is based on a spiritual commitment of the mind to Christ, the result will be an anatomical rewiring of the brain.
To explain how this process works, Struthers goes into detailed descriptions of the anatomy and physiology of the brain. Beware: without some patience, wading through this material might feel like sitting through a biology class. While some of the material is daunting, it's also fascinating evidence of the magnificent complexity of God's creation. There are more nerve cells in the human brain than stars in the universe. While many of us have been taught that we can find ways to improve other parts of our bodies, like the heart, how many of us know that we can develop spiritual habits that benefit our brains?
For me, an addictionologist, the chapter titled "Your Brain on Porn" is one of the best explanations of how a person becomes addicted to the neurochemicals involved in love, romance, sexual arousal, and human touch. Addiction assumes that the brain becomes neurochemically dependent (tolerant) and will therefore crave activities, such as looking at pornography, that elevate those neurochemicals. This explanation gives scientific credibility ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 65+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more