With lots of dance crazes nowadays, one seems to be the most controversial, twerking. Although sexually provocative dances are currently in, twerking still has struck the attention of many in a positive and especially the negative way. Thus, people weigh it. There are those who view it as fun and entertaining and there are those who see it as vulgar and sinful. But what really is it? In this blog post, we will discuss twerking and its effect on the soul.
What is Twerking?
Twerking is sexually provocative dancing to popular music characterized by rapid, repeated thrusting hip movements while squatting.
According to Oxford English Dictionary, the term dates back to 1820. Originally spelled twirk, it refers to twisting or twitching.
In 2013, it became a viral sensation. It was the number 1 “what is” Google search that year.
Catholic Church on Dancing
The Catholic Church does not prohibit dancing. Actually, dancing has also been used by the Church. One example is the Ex-Liturgical Dance. Some countries adopt dance movements before the liturgy starts as part of their culture.
Ethiopians have a ritual dance performed by priests and Levites before the Mass in front of the church. It is accompanied by the chanting of psalms during the procession. Upon entering the church, the chanting is carried out with bodily movement.
That said, this does not take away the fact that dancing can also be sinful.
Dancing must be performed in a proper manner, with modesty. If it involves sexually arousing movements, there lies the issue.
We go back to lust.
CCC 2351 Lust is disordered desire for or inordinate enjoyment of sexual pleasure. Sexual pleasure is morally disordered when sought for itself, isolated from its procreative and unitive purposes.
As defined, twerking is characterized by sexually suggestive movement.
And that is the intention. Those who see someone twerking are vulnerable to sexual temptation.
This could create impure thoughts.
And if this happens, this could result in other sexually-related sins such as masturbation, fornication, or even adultery.
Twerking is a Sin
Now, let’s answer the question.
Is twerking a sin?
Yes. Twerking is a sin. It promotes sexual pleasure which could lead to other lustful sins like masturbation and fornication.
Generally, dancing is not a sin. The intention makes it sinful. In this case, since it is sexually provocative, the intention is clear, to promote sexual or masturbatory pleasure.
Mortal vs Venial Sin
Now that we know that it is a sin, let’s figure out in what category it would fall.
Mortal or Venial.
For a sin to be mortal, it must meet the following conditions.
- It must involve grave matter
- Committed with full knowledge
- Committed with deliberate consent
Let’s use twerking, as an example.
If one had twerked despite awareness that it is a sin, then there is a mortal sin.
To explain more.
First, twerking is a lustful sin, therefore, it is a grave matter.
Next, that person committed it in full knowledge. It means there was a consciousness that it is a sin.
Lastly, committed it with full consent. Despite one knowing that it was sinful, it was still committed.
Note that all conditions must exist. If one of these conditions is lacking, it will fall as venial.
Confessing mortal sin is a must. While confessing venial sin is advisable.
To confess, you just have to tell the priest your sin. In this case, twerking, or if it resulted to sex outside marriage, fornication.
You can also mention to him the times you fell for this sin.
The priest will then give you counsel, ask you for penance and finally absolve you.
If you are struggling with scrupulosity, you can check this Confession Guide.
Or if it is your first time on confession, here is a guide for beginners.
Our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit. We must respect it. We must keep it pure.
In today’s generation, people seem to downplay chastity.
Lustful sins such as pre-marital sex, masturbation, pornography, adultery, and homosexual act are normalized.
As Catholics, although challenging, it is our duty to be a good example to others. We must live a life worthy of emulation, chaste.
In this way, we will influence others, especially the young ones who are very vulnerable, to do the same.
May we all imitate the purity of our Mother.
That we may pray daily with love and trust, especially in moments of temptation,
Loving Mother, pray for us.