Lecture 9e - Module 38, Sex and the Need to Belong

Lecture 9e Module - Module 38 Sexual Motivation I What theory of motivation fits sexual motivation A Instinct/genetics B Physiological drives

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- 1 - Module 38 Sexual Motivation I. What theory of motivation fits sexual motivation? A. Instinct/genetics? B. Physiological drives, drive-reduction and homeostasis? C. “Optimal arousal”? (Not drive reduction but curiosity) D. A glimpse at brain anatomy: rats, cats, chimps and us (p. 71 at Fig. 6.5 - shows brain comparisons) II. Social Rejection & the Need to Belong (Moving Images, Seg. 25, Personality) A. 20% of the kids are at the bottom of the social ladder. (Michael Thompson, Ph.D., Raising Cain : The Emotional Lives of Boys ) 1. Other kids let them know that they’re at the bottom (which reassures the other 80% that they’re not at the bottom). 2. Rejected children need protection. B. The only way to deal with social rejection is having at least one friend 1. Infants seek out a companion as soon as they’re able to crawl. 2. By age 3, children can talk about it. 3. By the approach of puberty (age 12), children begin to separate from their parents; the peer group begins to offer alternatives to family life. 4. Ambitious parents want more than one. III. Though this is not a course in theology or philosophy, remember that the roots of modern scientific psychology lie in philosophical and theological psychology, as well as in biology. Let’s go back to those roots for just a moment. Let’s spend a moment thinking about the need to belong and the phenomenon of “attraction.” We can begin with a very theoretical question which is bigger in scope than the question of why Romeo fell in love with Juliette or why any two individuals might fall in love: Why did God bother to create the Universe? A. Before the beginning, God was alone. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was a formless void, there was darkness over the deep…” (Genesis, 1:1-2) According to abrahamic traditions, before the beginning of the Universe, God was alone. B. What else do the abrahamic traditions tell us about God? The Apostle John wrote: “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and everyone that loves is born of God, and knows God. He that loves not, knows not God; for God is love.” (1 John 4: 7-9) C. St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica : it is the nature of love to seek out something to love; for love itself is not complete without the beloved; and this is why God created the Universe, the infinite “Other”: because it is in the nature of love to direct itself toward the beloved. In his aloneness, God imagined the beloved. And this is what called forth the Universe. And when the Universe had emerged, “God saw that it was good…. And so it
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- 2 - was. God saw all he had made, and indeed it was very good.” (Genesis, 1:25;31) For Aquinas, creation is the result of that attraction which we experience as love. Commenting on Aquinas, Dante concluded his masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, by affirming: it is “Love that moves the Sun and all the stars.” (Dante, The Divine Comedy, Il Paradiso, Canto 33, line 145)
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2011 for the course PSCH 100 taught by Professor Rosanova during the Fall '08 term at Ill. Chicago.

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Lecture 9e Module - Module 38 Sexual Motivation I What theory of motivation fits sexual motivation A Instinct/genetics B Physiological drives

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