Yahweh said that the human heart contrives evil from childhood. To understand why He said this, we must reflect upon how children learn.
Children imitate adults, but when they learn to reason, they may behave differently from how their parents behaved. Their ability to reason should allow them to learn everything they can possibly learn from experiences, but unfortunately they don’t.
Trying to have a good time is something innate. A child tries to protect itself against unpleasant experiences: it cries to let adults know there is something it doesn’t like, and laughs to let them know that it is happy.
An empty stomach is so uncomfortable that a baby instinctively begins to cry. When the mother hears those screams, she offers a breast to suckle on. This experience allows the baby to make its first associations. It learns that drinking milk makes the pain of an empty stomach go away and that to ask for milk it has only to cry.
Thanks to this experience, this child already understands something more about the world in which it was born. New experiences will give it the opportunity to make more associations. That is important because what is wisdom, if not making the right associations? New experiences should enable it to learn everything about itself and the world it lives in, but, unfortunately, certain experiences damage this process.
When a child is ill, and it is forced to drink syrup with a horrible taste, it doesn’t understand that this is to cure to its illness. Although it protests each time its parents show up with this syrup, this time its complaints are ignored. Later it regains its health, but doesn’t forget this experience. When months later its parents have a new drink that comes in a bottle similar to the one that had the syrup, it immediately protests because it assumes that it will have a horrible taste.
This teaches us two important things. One is that sometimes, by trying to protect ourselves from an unpleasant experience, we don’t improve our criteria because what we assume is going to be unpleasant isn’t necessarily unpleasant. Another is that although we initially associate an experience with many coincidental circumstances, new experiences later enable us to focus on those that are decisive.
Certain experiences damage our learning process. Sexual abuse is very unpleasant and even more so for children. They don’t understand why they happened and how to prevent them from happening again in the future. The memories of abuse, and the fear of its repetition, cause so much stress that they can endanger the mental health of the victims. To prevent this from happening, some erase these memories from their memory (consciousness) because they then stop worrying.
This tactic of self-defence allows victims to live their lives as if nothing had happened, but it has several drawbacks. One is that they can no longer learn anything from these experiences, so they may happen again in the future. Another is that later on in life, these victims may abuse others because these experiences survive in their subconscious.
A child observes adults and so learns how to behave when later on it encounters similar circumstances, and stores these memories in its subconscious. Even when later on in life it learns that society condemns sexual abuse, such behaviour survives in its subconscious as a model to be imitated in case it ever confronts similar circumstances.
By erasing sexual abuse from its memory, a child turns it into a time bomb. This person’s consciousness doesn’t remember them, but his subconscious does. Years later certain circumstances may remind him of this unpleasant experience from the past, but with the difference that he is now the adult.
Drugs open the door to the subconscious and the problem is that one cannot be prepared for what one finds there. What happens when a person who has blocked sexual abuse from his consciousness suddenly remembers it? Since those memories are very traumatic, he goes into a shock. No longer being able to react in a rational way, he follows his instincts and imitates the behaviour that he observed during his childhood.
What happens when he regains control? If he learned to condemn sexual abuse, he won’t be able to live with the idea of being an abuser. Since he doesn’t understand what made him behave that way, and fears people’s reaction, he will erase that experience from his consciousness in a similar way as when many years ago he was the victim.
Erasing a traumatic experience from our consciousness involves diverting our attention each time something may remind us of it. This creates problems with the learning process, which is based on associating certain ideas with each other in order to draw the appropriate conclusions. We can compare it to destroying several bridges over a river and still having to cross it: in order to reach our destination, we must now take many detours.
The abuser is almost always a man. When his victim is a boy, this homosexual experience can affect his sexuality. Although not all homosexuals were necessarily victims of sexual abuse during their childhood, without a doubt, some of them were.
Investigating the origin of homosexuality doesn’t entail judging it, but trying to understand it. Simply accepting homosexuality is ignoring the principle of cause and effect: it is ignoring that many children may suffer sexual abuse during their childhood and that oftentimes they occur within the family.
The many cases of priests who abused children shouldn’t surprise us because the Christian clergy attracted many repressed homosexuals by demanding celibacy. It is no coincidence that since homosexuals began coming out of the closet, the vocation to become a priest has dropped considerably.
When homosexuality was considered the work of the devil, those who weren’t attracted to the other sex believed they were devilish. To avoid falling into temptation, and other people questioning their sexuality, homosexuals became priests, monks or nuns.
The multiple cases that are coming to light of priests who abused children should encourage us to investigate why good people are able to act evilly.
Not all repressed homosexuals became priests, monks, or nuns. Many hid their homosexuality and later married. But what happens when while procreating we don’t think of our partner, but of someone of the same sex?