The Mormon church hates self-love. Masturbation should be strictly banned because it can turn young people into homosexuals and criminals, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believes, according to a leaked guidebook issued to members.
The 1981 guidebook, released this week by the transparency group MormonLeaks, provides some insights into what many young Mormons have been taught about sexual development and homosexuality over the years.
“Early masturbation experiences introduce the individual to sexual thoughts which may become habit forming and reinforcing to homosexual interests,” the guidebook claims. “Self-masturbation is almost universal among those who engage in homosexual behavior, and is a very difficult habit for most to overcome.”
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A spokesman for MormonLeaks claimed that the Mormon church had never retracted the guidebook, although current church teaching on homosexuality is somewhat more tolerant.
Current church teaching on homosexuality holds that while same-sex attraction is not a sin, physical homosexual acts are.
‘Sexual purity is an essential part of God’s plan for our happiness,’ reads the LDS Church website. ‘Sexual relations are reserved for a man and woman who are married and promise complete loyalty to each other.’