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Why We Get Stuck | Physically Spiritual

Updated: Oct 21, 2021

This episode of Physically Spiritual explores why we can be stuck in sin after conversion and receiving the sacraments.

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Time Stamps

2:30 - What is Sin?

5:30 - Mediated and Immediate Effects of Sin

7:15 - Sin changes us

8:30 - Sin and Wounds

10:00 - Trauma and Survival Instincts

14:00 - Evolution and Survival

17:30 - Mismatch Theory

20:40 - The Story of the Fall

23:30 - The Effects of Original Sin

30:00 - Being Stuck After Conversion

37:00 - The Spiritual Battle

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"The root of sin is in the heart of man, in his free will." Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1853.

"The heart is the dwelling-place where I am, where I live; according to the Semitic or Biblical expression, the heart is the place 'to which I withdraw.' The heart is our hidden center, beyond the grasp of our reason and of others; only the Spirit of God can fathom the human heart and know it fully. The heart is the place of decision, deeper than our psychic drives. It is the place of truth, where we choose life or death. It is the place of encounter, because as image of God we live in relation: it is the place of covenant." Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2563.

The effect of sin can be Mediated or Immediate:

Mediated Sin = Sin that affects us through other people. Examples: Original Sin & Generational Sin

Immediate Sin = My personal sin that has changed me.

"In a fallen world, we are all victims, but we are all also perpetrators."

"Neurons that fire together wire together."

The Temporal Effect of Sin = Affection for sin - The increased desire/attraction to sin

Inner Vows = agreements that we make that initially protect ourselves but bind the will in unhelpful ways.

States of the Autonomic Nervous System:

  1. Safety = Rest, Digest, and Heal

  2. Flee = Run Away, Fidgety, Restlessness

  3. Fight = Aggressiveness, Anger, Confrontation

  4. Freeze = Give Up, Pnumb, Shut Down

Trauma is the result of acute or chronic stress that engages the body's survival instincts that are beyond our capacity or never resolved.

"We live a story that originated in our autonomic state, is sent through autonomic pathways from the body to the brain and is translated by the brain into beliefs that guide our daily living. The mind narrates what the nervous system knows. Story follows state." - Deb Dana, The Polyvagal Theory in Therapy, p. 35. (emphasis mine)

Mismatch Theory = A mismatch between the environment that lead to the evolutionary adaptations of the human body and the environment that we currency live in leads to the

The Story of the Fall -

The effects of the Original Sin:

  1. Expulsion from the Garden of Eden

  2. Loss of Preternatural Gifts - Physical Death, Disordered and Unruly Desires, Forfeiting Infused Knowledge

  3. Labor and suffering to bring life into the world: increased pain in childbearing, work for food, difficulties in human relationship

"Grace flows through wounds" - Christopher West

"Although it is proper to each individual, original sin does not have the character of a personal fault in any of Adam's descendants. It is a deprivation of original holiness and justice, but human nature has not been totally corrupted: it is wounded in the natural powers proper to it, subject to ignorance, suffering and the dominion of death, and inclined to sin - an inclination to evil that is called concupiscence". Baptism, by imparting the life of Christ's grace, erases original sin and turns a man back towards God, but the consequences for nature, weakened and inclined to evil, persist in man and summon him to spiritual battle." Catechism of the Catholic Church, 405.

"Think of your own history when you pray, and there you will find much mercy. This will also increase your awareness that the Lord is ever mindful of you; he never forgets you. So it makes sense to ask him to shed light on the smallest details of your life, for he sees them all." Pope Francis, Gaudium et Exsultate, 153.

"The fourteenth: Likewise, he behaves as a chief bent on conquering and robbing what he desires: for, as a captain and chief of the army, pitching his camp, and looking at the forces or defences of a stronghold, attacks it on the weakest side, in like manner the enemy of human nature, roaming about, looks in turn at all our virtues, theological, cardinal and moral; and where he finds us weakest and most in need for our eternal salvation, there he attacks us and aims at taking us." St. Ignatius of Loyola, "Rules for the Discernment of Spirits," The Spiritual Exercises.

Go go deeper on this topic at

Support Physically Spiritual by joining the Totus Tuus Community at

Watch on Youtube or Facebook

Please leave a review, like, follow, and subscribe to help others find the Podcast!

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