Category Archives: Book promotion

A Year of Chastity

This is a special appeal to anyone who basically agrees with the stance on sexual morality expressed in my blog post and happens to visit my blog site. (I hope this is not a subclass of the null class.)

Please make some kind of effort to persuade the Catholic Church, or at least the Catholic Diocese in which you live, to declare 2020 or 2021 a year of Chastity as Pope Francis declared 2016 to be a year of Mercy -“talk up” the idea. During this year there would be all sorts of programs and practices to lead people to an understanding of the traditional sexual morality taught by the Church and to guide them towards developing the strength of character to practice it.

A call for a year of chastity is not a call for reaction or revolution. There is no exemplary age of chastity. Oh, conversational style varies. In certain places at certain times conversation has been prudish. At other times and places conversation has been bawdy. But we really do not know what has gone on after sunset throughout the ages. It is unrealistic to expect progressing into a golden age of chastity. The struggle to make ourselves proper human sexual beings will always be difficult. There will be failures. For even if the spirit is willing, the flesh is weak. A year of chastity would be a time to remind ourselves of the rules for proper human sexuality and seek encouragement for living in accordance with them.

My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. In my book, I make a philosophical defense of traditional Catholic sexual morality. Free copies can be obtained here by credit card by paying $3.75 for shipping and handling.





To receive a free book, send check of $3.75 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.

The Intercourse Theory of Conception

Don’t these people know about the intercourse theory of conception? That’s what I cynically ask myself when I read novels in which the author sends his characters merrily off, for all sorts of reasons, to start baby-making.

That sexual intercourse between a man and woman is the cause of conception is one of our best established theories. Coupled with awareness of this theory comes those positive and negative thoughts and feelings about sexuality. We realize its importance for human survival, pleasures and love. Yet we dread its disruptive power.

The intercourse theory of conception, and accompanying thoughts and feelings are common sense. Suddenly, it struck me that the way to make my defense of traditional sexual morality clearer is to stay with common sense. I am not saying that acceptance of traditional sexual morality is part of common sense. However, the beliefs and concepts used in a strong case for traditional sexual morality are expressible in the every day language with which we talk about sex. The argument does not need some special philosophical vocabulary and system. The ideas we use to talk about relationships, to give advice, to teach children about sex, to gossip, etc., are sufficient to follow, accept or reject the argument. The importance of emphasizing that the argument goes on at the common sense level is that it has to be given serious attention. It cannot be ignored as coming from some special religion or philosophy. It is not necessary to develop a special philosophical vocabulary and then show that use of this conceptual scheme is the correct way to represent reality as it is.

In my book, I tended to develop too much special vocabulary and explicitly draw upon the philosopher Kant. I am not changing the basic themes of the book. But I am setting aside ways of speaking, issues and scholarship which would be of interest to academic philosophers, reference to other philosophers and intriguing philosophical puzzles. I will write for the intelligent lay person using terms of everyday life. Of course, this does not eliminate the critical thinking need for making distinctions and defining how some crucial terms will be used in discussion. But critical thinking is common sense.

There are other common sense concepts whose use we need not justify. The language of morality: right, wrong, good, evil etc. does not need defense. We do not need to show that we have a right to talk about right and wrong. We do make the distinction between the results of natural processes we can alter and the results of natural processes, such as the getting of agreements by promises, which it is wrong to frustrate by lying. We do not need to justify using the notions of good character, a way a person ought to be, and a meaning for life. If we try to show that we are entitle to talk at the common sense level, we start an endless regress of justifying our ways of thinking. This undercuts giving an effective argument.

My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. These blog posts are in effect work towards a 2nd edition. I have not changing the basic line of argument in my book. But in these blog posts I am developing better ways of expressing my argument by staying with the language of common sense and removing topics and language which could at best be of interest to professional academic philosophers. Free copies can be obtained here by credit card by paying $3.75 for shipping and handling.





To receive a free book, send check of $3.75 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.

Trump: His Sexual Nihilism

By accepting the murder of Jamal Khashoggi as the price of doing business with Saudi Arabia, our president, Donald Trump, proclaimed to the entire world that he is a nihilist. Nothing matters, everything is permitted, as along as it serves his interest and he has the power to do it. On this Thanksgiving Day, 2018, let us thank God that the entire world does not yet despise us as a nihilist nation.

How can we protect ourselves from degenerating into nihilists? There is a bulwark against nihilism in the struggle to build the character and follow the rules of traditional sexual morality.

Donald Trump is a notorious sexual nihilist. In principle, every thing sexual is permissible. He sets aside any moral constraints on satisfying his sexual inclinations . Legal need for consent is not a great obstacle for him. His power and wealth allows him to “coerce” consent.

I wrote Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism , Tulsa, 2014 See Confronting Sexual Nihilism. In the book I make three main points. 1.Struggling to live in accordance with traditional sexual morality gives us a purpose in life.
2.Following the commonly held moral theory that anything sexual is morally permissible if there is consent, soon leads to full-fledged nihilism that in principle everything
is permissible.
3. A strong case, using only claims and concepts available to all contemporary rational people, that it is reasonable to struggle to build the character to follow the rules of traditional sexual morality.

I need help in making this case. Please feel free to use and develop any ideas from my book or these blog posts

These blog posts are in effect work towards a 2nd edition. Free copies can be obtained here by credit card by paying $3.75 for shipping and handling.





To receive a free book, send check of $3.75 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.

Contempt for Traditional Catholic Moral Theory

I tripped falling hard on my right side in front of finish line for the October 21, 2018 Columbus Nationwide 1/2 marathon.My right femur broke immediately below the hip socket. Dr.Li an OSU orthopedic surgeon provided me with a titanium hip and femur insert. I am facing a long slow recovery.

Am I called to use my recovery to reinvigorate a mission I began a few years ago? This mission is to use whatever philosophical skills I have to show that traditional sexual morality is as well justified as any set of moral rules for sexual activity. A case for traditional, and Catholic, sexuality morality deserves the attention of all who claim to be open minded. Unfortunately, there is widespread contempt, even amongst Catholics, for so-called natural law moral thinking allegedly supporting traditional sexual moral rules.

Amongst “analytic philosophers,” Simon Blackburn has a good solid academic reputation.

Simon Blackburn, in Lust Oxford U. Press New York 2004, laments the damage to sexual morality by the putative philosophic error of finding it given by by nature. He wrote “Yet it is almost impossible to exaggerate the effect of this simple combination of thoughts about lust, restraint, reason and what is natural. The entire Catholic doctrine of birth control depends upon it.”

He then starts his very short seventh chapter criticizing this moral
theory by writing: “We pause to reflect here on the argument that sex is for procreation, and hence that any sexual activity or desire that does not have reproduction as its aim is immoral. Here philosophy can come to the rescue. The dry way of doing it would be through teasing out various different
senses of “natural,” and then worrying quite how the move works from what there is in nature, and what ought to be there, in human activities. The quick way of realizing that something must be wrong is through humor.”

Blackburn uses humor. It is easy to sketch out scenarios of how ridiculous it is to take interfering with what a system typically produces as immoral. After all engineering is interfering with some functions of some natural systems.

We are entitled to resent Blackburn’s recourse to mockery rather than argument. However, we must respect the serious problem in justifying moral rules by specifying functions of a few natural systems which it is morally wrong to frustrate. This selection problem is really hard to solve. What are the principles which specify that it is morally permissible frustrate the face warming function of facial hair by shaving while it is morally forbidden to frustrate the reproductive function of a sexual climax by masturbation?

This selection problem is one of the major issues I tackle in my book defending traditional sexual morality. The solution cannot be sketched in a blog post. However, the main tactic is bipartite. First make a case that moral laws are just as fundamental in nature as are factual laws. Second make a case that some of the basic natural moral laws specify that the reproductive function of sexual activity ought never be intentionally frustrated.

My book on sexual morality makes a philosophical case for traditional sexual morality. My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. These blog posts are in effect work towards a 2nd edition. Free copies can be obtained here by credit card by paying $3.75 for shipping and handling.





To receive a free book, send check of $3.75 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.

Don’t Worry About the Crimes. Stop the Sins

At this time, August 2018, I am articulating what is quickly becoming conventional wisdom amongst Catholics distressed by the allegations that Cdl. T. McCarrick et al. carried on homosexual activities while serving as a Catholic priests and bishops. This new received wisdom holds that when the clergy sex abuse scandal first broke in the early 2000s, we should have focused on stopping the sexual sins as opposed to focusing on sexual misconduct which was also illegal. We should have emphasized stopping sexual sins instead of emphasizing illegal sexual misconduct. Since sexual sins are a necessary condition for illegal sexual misconduct a focus on sin prevention would also have addressed preventing illegal sexual activity. Adherence to traditional sexual morality is necessary and sufficient for avoiding illegal sexual activity.
The focus on avoiding what is illegal has misled us into thinking that our problems were conforming to civil law rather than the moral law which expresses the unchanging will of God for human behavior. As a result, the bishops missed the opportunity of leading us in a much needed revival of traditional Catholic sexual morality.
There are a variety of explanations why the emphasis was on preventing and remedying illegal sexual conduct. They range from the neutral theory that the illegal sexual abuse of minors was the immediate and salient problem to be solved to the hostile and uncharitable theory that there was a goal of distracting from homosexual conduct amongst adult priests and even bishops. The explanations are issues for sociology. As a philosopher who has no intention of doing the empirical research necessary to test sociological explanations, I will not take a stand on explanations. I have to rely on others for sociology. But I will demand strong evidence for theories which attribute malice to priests and bishops. I fear that such evidence may be forthcoming.
However, I have no hesitation criticizing the bishops policy they should have required preaching of basic traditional sexual morality with a great emphasis on how to avoid occasions of sin.
My book on sexual morality makes a philosophical case for traditional sexual morality. My case does not assume any religious doctrines. I belong to a long Catholic tradition which holds that Catholic morality is simply morality which binds all people regardless of their religion.
My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. The publisher’s listed price is $26.99. Free copies can be obtained here by credit card by paying $3.75 for shipping and handling.





To receive a free book, send check of $3.75 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.

Theology of the Body Presupposes Rules for Sexual Morality

As I read Theology of the Body*, it proposes that sexual love is a nearly perfect model of God’s love for humans. Of course, not any expression of sexual love provides such a model. It needs to be proper sexual love. To identify proper sexual love we need moral rules specifying what is morally proper sexual expressions of love. So theology of the body does not provide a sexual morality; rather it presupposes a sexual morality. This presupposed sexual morality is traditional Catholic sexual morality. What do we learn from Theology of the Body?

It shows the beauty of proper sexual expression of love. Thereby, theology of the body provides what is actually most important for sexual morality: Motivation to follow it. It is not hard to understand: Do not commit adultery. It is difficult to obey in deed and thought.

*Theology of the Body is the topic of a series of 129 lectures given by Pope John Paul II during his Wednesday audiences in St. Peter’s Square and the Paul VI Audience Hall between September 5, 1979 and November 28, 1984. It constitutes an analysis on human sexuality, and is considered as the first major teaching of his pontificate. The complete addresses were later compiled and expanded upon in many of John Paul’s encyclicals,

My book on sexual morality does not refer to theology of the body. I only try to make a case for the rules of proper sexual morality. Both justiciation of rules and motivation are essential for a full sexual morality.

My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. The publisher’s listed price is $26.99. Printed copies can be purchased here by credit card for $3.99, plus $3.71 for shipping and handling.





To purchase the printed book by check, send check of $3.99 plus $3.71 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.

Pragmatic Arguments to Support the Paternal Principle

In this post I lay out an abstract schema for ultimately using a pragmatic argument to justify the primary thesis of my book. The thesis is the Paternal Principle that a man ought never intentionally seek an orgasm except in intercourse open to conception with a woman to whom he has made a lifelong commitment to be faithful while caring for her and their children.

Here is the schema.

1. If after following all guidelines for reasoning well, viz. careful reasoning, I have doubts about whether or not my reasoning represents reality as it is apart from my careful reasoning,viz. things in themselves then my careful reasoning is not compelling to me.
2. If my careful reasoning is not compelling to me, then my careful reasoning is not compelling.
3. If my careful reasoning is not compelling, then there are questions about how well careful reasoning represents things in themselves.
4. If there are questions about how well careful reasoning represents things in themselves, then I take the critical stance of investigating careful reasoning to judge how well it represents things in themselves. (This is the critical stance originated by DesCartes.)

In Chapter IV of my book I admit to doubts about my reasoning because of assumptions made and have really tried hard –perhaps while boring readers- to follow guidelines for careful reasoning. So, I concede that my argument for the Paternal Principle is not compelling simply on the basis of my argument for it in Chapter IV. So, putting what I just admitted together with lines (1)-(4), we get (5) whose ideas I expand in Chapter XI.

5. I take the critical stance of investigating careful reasoning to judge how well it represents things in themselves; especially with regard to the Paternal Principle and the reasoning for it.

6. If I take the critical stance of investigating careful reasoning to judge how well it represents things in themselves, especially with regard to the Paternal Principle and the reasoning for it.
then there are theoretical and practical alternatives.
7 If take a theoretical alternative a theory of things in themselves is developed and then careful reasoning is compared with the theory of things in themselves for accuracy
8. If I take a practical alternative, I continue to use careful reasoning while setting aside questions about its correctness, keeping in mind a conclusion reached by such reasoning while acting as if such a conclusion represented things in themselves with the intention of letting things in themselves convince me that the conclusion represents reality as it is apart from careful thinking. These practical alternatives are called pragmatic arguments.
9. Satisfactory theoretical alternatives cannot be developed without begging the question at issue. Development of a theory of things in themselves would use careful reasoning. However, the question at issue is whether or not careful reasoning can develop an accurate theory of things in themselves.
Hence, (10).
10.I develop a pragmatic argument for the Paternal Principle and the reasoning for it.

Much needs to be said about what is permissible in this process of a pragmatic argument and I try to spell it out in Chapter XI The main task is to show how careful reasoning is not violated while letting ourselves be convinced by factors which cannot be expressed as reasons which can be stated in words. Not much can be said in support of the assumption that we can encounter things in themselves in ways which show us things in themselves but which cannot be said. This is a realistic assumption I make but cannot justify in words. But after all, it is not a foolish assumption. I am a thing in itself. In all sorts of ways I encounter things in themselves. The reality in which I am emeshed can teach me in many ways without words. In particular, it has taught me that traditional sexual morality for men as taught by the Catholic Church is true. This is what I defend in my book.

My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. The publisher’s listed price is $26.99. Printed copies can be purchased here by credit card for $3.99, plus $3.71 for shipping and handling.





To purchase the printed book by check, send check of $3.99 plus $3.71 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214
Include your shipping address.

What is the Fundamental Moral Principle of Female Sexuality?

Do you know of a Fundamental Moral Principle of Female Sexuality?

In my book Confronting Sexual Nihilism , I argue for a basic feature of traditional sexual morality. I call it the Paternal Principle. An elaborate statement of this principle is quoted below

A male may intentionally attain a sexual climax only in sexual intercourse with a consenting woman to whom he is bound by a life-long monogamous socially recognized union for procreation, In addition he should:(1) intend to cooperate with his spouse to protect and promote the lifelong natural development of any conception resulting from this intercourse and (2) strive to appreciate with his spouse the natural value of their sexual satisfactions and cooperate with her to enhance those satisfactions.

But this principle is only for men

The principle is intellectually accessible to women. Women, though, cannot think of it as founding their sexual morality. Of course, most aspects of humanity are common to men and women. So mutual collaboration is possible and needed for a full human sexuality. The paternal principle focuses almost exclusively on the distinctive feature of male sexuality: sperm dispersal. My thinking with male sexuality shows me that proper control of sperm dispersal can be the foundation of male sexual morality. I do not know how to think with female sexuality to locate a foundation for female sexual morality on such a single event.

We need input from women on a moral principle for female sexuality.

Readers of this post may be interested in my book on sexual morality.

Readers who email an attempt to state a fundamental principle of sexual morality for women to kielkopf.1@osu.edu will be mailed a free copy of my book.

My book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. The publisher’s listed price is $26.99. Printed copies can be purchased here by credit card for $3.99, plus $3.71 for shipping and handling.





To purchase the printed book by check, send check of $3.99 plus $3.71 for shipping and handling per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214
Include your shipping address.

Complementarity of the Sexes vs. Harmony of the Sexes

I have recently published a book on sexual morality. It is a defense of traditional sexual morality At least the book is a defense of traditional sexual morality for men: No intentional attainment of orgasms until in sexual intercourse with a woman with whom there is a commitment to life long care of one another and any children resulting from their sexual intercourse.

I did not write to support any fundamental rule for the traditional morality for women because it might be different for women than for men. Women certainly have a different way of participating in sexual intercourse and relating to off-spring. I suggested that women might be the best people for articulating the fundamental principle for female sexuality.

I assumed that the moral rules for men and women, as well as men and women, complement one another in the broad sense that they function together in nature to bring about production and care of off-spring. As in so many species the male and female individuals in nature form new reproductive units. Of course, what happens in nature does not happen with mechanical regularity. Some individuals never mate while other mating units fail. But that’s nature.

But there is more harshness in nature than mere failure to attain a purpose. The attainment of a purpose may require frustration. Parts acting together may need to be “turn on” and “turn off” devices for the other part. That seems to be the way it is with men and women in their inclinations and maybe even in their moral principles. A turn off from one party when the other party is turning on certainly would not be harmony although it might well be how the complementarity is working best on this occasion. The “war of the sexes” is natural. Fortunately, there are many situations of mutual “turn on.” Occasional harmony is also natural.

Read more about sexual morality in nature in my book Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. The publisher’s listed price is $26.99. Printed copies can be purchased here by credit card for $12.99, plus $3.71 for shipping and handling.





To purchase the printed book by check, send check of $16.70 per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214
Include your shipping address.

The Morality Trap

Suppose that you are worried that human moral ways of thinking do not express some human independent standards of what to do and how to be. You fear, or perhaps hope, that moral thinking is simply a way in which human beings have evolved to think. Moral thinking has some survival value. But that is all. So, you ask whether or not we can simply set it aside; forget about asking moral questions. Here is where we encounter the “moral trap.”

If we have doubts about the legitimacy of our moral thinking, we ask ourselves whether or not we ought to discard thinking morally. This “ought” reveals that we do not avoid thinking morally by thinking about whether or not we should take morality seriously.

We can still set aside moral thinking – be amoralists. If we want to be amoralists we have to ignore the moral ways of thinking which includes ignoring the question whether or not we can ignore morality. The price of amoralism is that we cannot find a meaning in life without moral thinking. Avoiding raising the question of whether or not we ought to be moral requires continually distracting ourselves from facing moral questions. To have a meaning for our life, we need a way we ought to be. If we hold fast to amoralism, we have to suppress all thoughts of how we ought to be with the result of becoming nihilists.

I have written a book in which I develop the theme that this moral trap is a blessing because if we turn away from distracting ourselves from morality, we start thinking seriously of morality. I make a case that taking morality seriously leads to traditional sexual morality.

My book arguing that sexual neutrality leads to nihilism is Confronting Sexual Nihilism: Traditional Sexual Morality as an Antidote to Nihilism was released by Tate Publishing on March 11, 2014. See Book Web Page for information about the book. The publisher’s listed price is $26.99. Printed copies can be purchased here by credit card for $12.99, plus $3.71 for shipping and handling.





To purchase the printed book by check, send check of $16.70 per copy. Send to:
Charles F. Kielkopf
45 W. Kenworth Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214
Include your shipping address.