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Opus Dei in the UK - Comments

SomersetJohn's Avatar Comment 1 by SomersetJohn

So they don't just abuse children, they abuse themselves as well.

Of course, self-abuse isn't a crime.

Oh sorry, according to Ratzo and his predecessors some kinds are!

Tue, 07 Sep 2010 20:14:32 UTC | #513289

The Plc's Avatar Comment 2 by The Plc

All endorsed by the Pope himself, esteemed leader of the worlds largest and most mainstream religion. Remember this the next time a religious apologist accuses atheists of only attacking a disorted caricature of religions and their votaries.

Tue, 07 Sep 2010 20:48:49 UTC | #513315

JQisAwesome's Avatar Comment 3 by JQisAwesome

If only she understood evolution -

she'd know her temptation for sex is a chemically-driven, uncontrollable drive for reproduction and not a devilish little goblin inside her, trying to provoke "evil."

Tue, 07 Sep 2010 21:52:30 UTC | #513368

Simon Templar's Avatar Comment 4 by Simon Templar

‘I never went to a Roman Catholic school and had boyfriends from the age of 12, because that’s what I thought you had to do,’ she says. ‘You really weren’t cutting the mustard if you didn’t.

Read more:

Tue, 07 Sep 2010 22:06:40 UTC | #513375

Immanuel Kunt's Avatar Comment 5 by Immanuel Kunt

"But Sarah doesn’t do children" well that's a first.

Tue, 07 Sep 2010 22:25:55 UTC | #513387

Tord M's Avatar Comment 6 by Tord M

@Moderator. I read Comment 3 before it was removed. Even though it contained the F word and was quite short without any supporting evidence or arguments, and might be seen as offensive, I think from a psychological/psychoanalytical perspective it did actually contain some truth, and could have inspired some interesting debate, so it shouldn't have been removed. As Anonymous pointed out: Sexual repression or self-repression is definitely at work here.

Updated: Tue, 07 Sep 2010 22:36:22 UTC | #513388

Corylus's Avatar Comment 7 by Corylus

Well, I am not going to make any comments concerning what I think they should, or should not, do with other consenting adults, as that is absolutely none of my business. (Sigh, I do hope that locker room comments concerning 'what they need' do not show themselves on this thread.)

In general terms though, I wonder whether acceptance and understanding of asexuality - as well as homosexuality - is something that the catholic church needs to foster. Maybe society as a whole as well.

It is not 'special' (other than in terms of scarcity) and it is not a 'calling'. It is just the way some of people are built. What it most certainly is not is a reason for displaying lack of trust and curtailing opportunities for friendships and contact with others.

Unmarried male and female ‘numeraries’ are segregated in the Opus Dei houses where many of them live, with only limited contact between the sexes.

They allow themselves to be segregated; they deny themselves; they hurt themselves and still the cult of misery cannot be assuaged.

They can never, and will never, be good enough.

Poor women - I hope the friends they make in these houses are a comfort.

Updated: Tue, 07 Sep 2010 22:48:27 UTC | #513399

Neodarwinian's Avatar Comment 8 by Neodarwinian


Updated: Tue, 07 Sep 2010 23:41:37 UTC | #513417

Philster61's Avatar Comment 9 by Philster61

She'd be more suited to Helgas House of Pain. Strangely enough, I would almost find it erotic if I didn't find it sad.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 01:03:41 UTC | #513457

Rob Schneider's Avatar Comment 10 by Rob Schneider

I was friends with an Opus Dei member in Graduate School, and one day the conversation turned to my beliefs. I said, "Me? I'm a recovering Catholic."
She said, "Oh, that's so good to hear that you're finding your way back to the Church." "What!?" I cried, " I mean I've finally purged most of that shit from my brain."

Funny, we didn't talk much after that. Hmmmm.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 01:26:25 UTC | #513467

Sean_W's Avatar Comment 11 by Sean_W

Why didn't they have a healthy response to the guilt trips? Doesn't that hint at an existing problem prior to their encountering this cult? I struggle to understand why theists are incapable of scoffing at their accusers.

--and they think god gives them strength, very sad.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 02:42:05 UTC | #513499

Nictionary's Avatar Comment 12 by Nictionary

Well, just think.. eventually natural selection will "weed out" celibacy. If you can't have sex, you can't pass on your abstinence genes right?

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 04:13:12 UTC | #513518

besleybean's Avatar Comment 13 by besleybean

Altho celibacy is not a requirement of opus dei, of course.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 06:00:02 UTC | #513538

EvN's Avatar Comment 14 by EvN

There’s also a subgroup of female numeraries known as ‘assistant members’ who perform the cooking, sewing and cleaning and ‘serve’ the men. Men never serve the women.

Surprised anyone?

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 06:35:11 UTC | #513547

Stevehill's Avatar Comment 15 by Stevehill

The Mail forgot to mention that one of Blair's Babes, Ruth Kelly, is an Opus Dei member. She was a cabinet minister and secretary of state for Education, god help us.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 07:46:33 UTC | #513567

guyver_dio's Avatar Comment 16 by guyver_dio

nah she just grown a sexual attachment to the cilice now so everytime she tightens it she thinking "oh yes feel the burn oh god yes".

Always wondered with these sort of people how they can possibly keep it up 24 hours 7 days a week for years where there isn't a moment where they haven't let their guard down and allowed something sinful or unknowingly let something sinful happen (keeping in mind what they consider sinful can be as little and stupid as breathing air). I just don't see it possible. What if I went up to her and constructed a very disturbing sinful scene verbally which she for a split second thinks about because she's hearing the words (you have to or you wouldn't understand anything), can't mere thought be sin and if so she's a liar if she claimed to be completely sin free.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 08:00:44 UTC | #513573

Ygern's Avatar Comment 17 by Ygern

guyver_dio All you'd do is prove you were being well, dickish. I don't think she imagines for a second that she is sin-free. People this obsessed with self-punishment are extremely critical and harsh with themselves. She most likely interprets every normal impulse & thought she has as a sin.

What you have here is a very damaged woman. And no, you can't magic her out of it with your Special Brand of Locker-Room comments.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 09:01:32 UTC | #513593

sunbeamforjeebus's Avatar Comment 18 by sunbeamforjeebus

Don't you just love the catholic church and all it's odd little pecadilloes?These people are simply one rung up the 'Barking mad ladder' than the usual morons.The thought that one of these cretins was a Government Minister is sickening and another symptom of what was rotten with New Labour. I would like to see Blair and Brown wear one of these torture devices around their necks! Perhaps we could make a particularly sharp and rusty one for Ratzinger?

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 09:03:09 UTC | #513596

ShoutingQuietly's Avatar Comment 19 by ShoutingQuietly

It takes all sorts! I suspect there are many things in play that make a human want this lifestyle. Culture. Sex drive (which could be part genetics, part environment). Masochistic tendency. Childhood experiences.

I did note with interest that no mention of onanism was made. Celibate simply means without sexual partner, abstinence from sex with another. It does not imply that one cannot masturbate. I wonder if the cilice is used in some sort of BDSM practice. Even without masturbation, the denial of pleasure is as important to some in BDSM circles. I'm not suggesting that there is anything wrong with this. What ever floats your boat missus.

I have a suspicion that all of this behaviour, is a result of passages from the bible, like this.

1 Corinthians 7 "I desire to have you to be free from cares. He who is unmarried is concerned for the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord; but he who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how he may please his wife. There is also a difference between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman cares about the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit. But she who is married cares about the things of the world – how she may please her husband. This I say for your own profit; not that I may ensnare you, but for that which is appropriate, and that you may attend to the Lord without distraction." (verses 32–35)

Which seems to me to be, the writers way of keeping all women virgins, until they are required to be "up for anything" their husbands desire, when married. It doesn't seem to take into account of the woman's needs or desires. Which might suggest the writer was not a woman. It's not surprising that it might put some women off marriage, preferring to be the chattel of an absent God, than a present, and possibly misogynist husband.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 09:08:20 UTC | #513600

lilalindy's Avatar Comment 20 by lilalindy

Comment 13 by Nictionary

Well, just think.. eventually natural selection will "weed out" celibacy. If you can't have sex, you can't pass on your abstinence genes right?


If you look at a group of people (as in type rather than an organised mass) we are more familiar with, you can see that that isn't true.

Often, 'religious' people try to use their limited understanding of evolution to claim that their religious text is backed up by science by claiming that homosexuality (as in homosexuality gene#) cannot be passed on to the next generation therefore it is a personal choice and an abhorrence to their God.

Whilst it is true that (excepting artificial insemination) homosexuals don't pass on their own genes, the idea that an individual has to pass on their own genes to continue a 'trait' is the language of asexual reproduction.

In sexual reproduction, it is the gene pool (you might argue that it is the local community of people that bread with each other) that passes on its genes in those that do reproduce. So, if a gene is good for a community, that community will stand a better chance of surviving if that gene is passed onto the next generation.

In this way, you might conclude that it is better for society to have around 20 per cent of both genders that don't bread but instead, look after other people's children, do favours or whatever group of actions that the community has found to be beneficial by having such a group.

Simply, the breading communities that don't pass on this trait don't survive as well.

# note I don't know where the research is on a 'homosexuality gene' or if it turns out to be several genes but there are definitely physiological differences in the brain. On the cellular level, where gender dimorphism is apparent, female-type structures appear in male homosexuals and on a behaviour level, male homosexuals are better than male heterosexuals at tasks that women are good at - being as good at them

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 09:23:33 UTC | #513609

lilalindy's Avatar Comment 21 by lilalindy

Each night she fastens a wire chain, known as a cilice, around her upper thigh.

I bet you can get them in those 'Private' shops, or even online.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 09:25:40 UTC | #513611

SomersetJohn's Avatar Comment 22 by SomersetJohn

Am I deluding myself or is there a striking similarity between how women in OD see themselves and how some women in islam (at least the more extreme bit) see themselves.

Perhaps I shouldn't just refer to women. I have to assume the men are as strange. OD does seem to resemble islam in some ways.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 10:54:28 UTC | #513674

Callinectes's Avatar Comment 23 by Callinectes

Frankly, I'm suspicious of trusting anything from the Daily Mail.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 11:46:48 UTC | #513716

lilalindy's Avatar Comment 24 by lilalindy

A three link, 1mm gauge, full-leg metal cilice with metal fastener, made by Italian Nuns (55g) 23" x 1¾" (59cm x 4cm) - $89.00 - $69.00 USD. Price includes shipping.

This is from a US site so, 'Italian Nuns' heh? So, as part of their punishment for being alive, are they kept locked in the attic, fed fish heads and forced to manufacture these kinky torture instruments?

This whole thing seems a bit S&M to me - about what you might expect from an MP.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 12:03:51 UTC | #513730

Vorlund's Avatar Comment 25 by Vorlund

This is both scary and sad, that religion can compel people to such acts of folly and that people actually organise their entire lives in such extreme ways on mere wishful thinking. If these women were self harming because they claimed that aliens were talking to them through a hair drier we'd want to section them. Claim that it is 'the work of God' and too many people who are normally 'savvy' don't see a problem with it.

Nutters come in all shapes and guises. Even world leaders have this kind of crap ricoheting around inside their heads.

We must get to a time soon when there is a movement for the abolition of religious drivel and its indoctrination.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 12:04:28 UTC | #513731

AtheistEgbert's Avatar Comment 26 by AtheistEgbert

All religions preach the same kind of delusion: that you are worthless, a sinner, that you need a higher power. It takes away your ability to value your own life, your reason and your moral judgement. It's all the same old stuff.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 12:05:56 UTC | #513732

viralmeme's Avatar Comment 27 by viralmeme

How it works: The application of mild pain stimulates the production of endorphins in the brain leading to feelings of euphoria. Seeing as it's not supposed to be plesurable it absolves them of feelings of guilt regarding sexual pleasure. It would also render them incapable of emotionally relating to their fellow Christians. The founder of Opus Dei was so fond of this that the walls of his adobe would be covered in blood. Now you let these people loose on Children .. :o

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 12:25:41 UTC | #513737

GPWC's Avatar Comment 28 by GPWC

Why not go without the cilice? Surely an even greater display of her will power and dedication to suppress her desires and atone for her sins?

Updated: Wed, 08 Sep 2010 15:21:42 UTC | #513876

Stonyground's Avatar Comment 29 by Stonyground

Her parents were horrified and thought that she was joining a cult. Look up the word 'cult' in any dictionary and I think that you will find that Opus Dei qualifies in spades.

I think that being kinky and seeking various levels of pain in order to experience more intense orgasms is healthy and while not normal is simply unusual.

Deliberately inflicting pain on yourself to atone for sins that are entirely imaginary is not healthy and is also inviting kinky persons who have any kind of power over you to abuse their position.

Is it really any wonder that the RCC spends so much time putting sexual abuse fires out?

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 19:47:41 UTC | #514100

ShoutingQuietly's Avatar Comment 30 by ShoutingQuietly

@Comment 28 by viralmeme Couldn't she and her ilk, just go out once a month and eat a chicken phaal like me? No chance of blood poisoning that way. Although the greater risk of food poisoning could offset that advantage. The curry at least clears out the nasal passages, amongst others.

Wed, 08 Sep 2010 20:44:35 UTC | #514142