I don’t usually read Men’s Health Magazine, but this article caught my eye this week.
Don’t be Swayed by Her Swimsuit
Sexy women can be bad for your wallet and your waistline
I know what many people are thinking, especially the guys reading this post, “Trevor we already knew this, and it doesn’t have to be sexy women, all women are bad for your wallet.”
I suppose that’s true, but reading this article lead me to this link, the source for Men’s Health.
This is something worth filing away, good research for “that lesson” when you separate the boy from the girls.
The brief article says:
"It seems that sexual appetite causes a greater urgency to consume anything rewarding," the authors suggest. Thus, the activation of sexual desire appears to spill over into other brain systems involved in reward-seeking behaviours, even the cognitive desire for money.
"After they touched a bra, men are more likely to be content with a smaller immediate monetary reward," writes Bram Van den Bergh, one of the study's authors. "Prior exposure to sexy stimuli may influence the choice between chocolate cake or fruit for dessert."
The authors believe the stimuli bring men's minds to the present as opposed to the future. "The study demonstrates that bikinis cause a shift in time preference: Men live in the here and now when they glance at pictures featuring women in lingerie. That is, men will choose the immediately available rewards and seek immediate gratification after sex cue exposure."
Now this isn’t revolutionary information, as advertisers have been using sexual imagery in their marketing campaigns for some time. But what is insightful is that while I may be able to resist the lure of Victoria Secret’s marketing, having visual consumed their images I may be influenced to buy or spend more that I planned when shopping at Target.
This reminds me of a licensed hypnotist we had at camp recently. After hypnotizing several students and having them dance around like chickens, he began to unpack some research on the mind and it’s susceptibility to outside influences. When our minds are at rest, or rather not on guard, or better yet not on heavenly things (being like Christ), we allow ourselves to be exposed to the cravings of the sinful nature. It was great to see the students respond to his challenge (especially those who had been hypnotized, which he referred to as “mind influence”) to submit their will and influence to leadings of The Spirit.
Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance.
1 Peter 1:13-14
Now there are some obvious implications for men here. The article did say that the survey results weren’t applicable to every male, but we do need to be honest about our limitations and weaknesses. However I don’t think the goal here is to avoid the beaches and Victoria Secret windows, rather it is having a mind like Christ – focused on things above where all images are filtered with love. Instead of seeing curves and flesh and allowing ourselves to surrender our control which we once placed before God, we need to see as Jesus saw.
For ladies there is at least one implication I can think of (as a man I don’t dare to speak too much about what I don’t know). With this knowledge there comes a responsibility among Godly women to serve and honor and encourage Godly men. And while there is every now and then a hoochie-mama in our churches who doesn’t know (or care) how to dress, for the most part I don’t hear the complaining from our students.
Um…I guess that’s all I got to say right now.
(And no it wasn’t because of the bikini’d girl in the photo that I read the article, although I did spend a $100 on the site’s online store…I’m just joking…I’m too cheap to be influenced like that…)