Book Review: The Passion Principles

Jay Dee

Book Review: The Passion Principles

Jul 09, 2014

The Passion Principles: Celebrating Sexual Freedom in Marriage by Shannon Ethridge (author of The Fantasy Fallacy: Exposing the Deeper Meaning Behind Sexual Thoughts) is all about sex within marriage (my favorite topic).  It is less a book, in the traditional sense, and more a collection of

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the-passion-principlesThe Passion Principles: Celebrating Sexual Freedom in Marriage by Shannon Ethridge (author of The Fantasy Fallacy: Exposing the Deeper Meaning Behind Sexual Thoughts) is all about sex within marriage (my favorite topic).  It is less a book, in the traditional sense, and more a collection of articles, almost a book of blog posts, ordered and sectioned by topic.  This format allows you to approach the book as more like a blog reader: you can choose which articles to read, based not on which chapter comes first, but rather on any criteria you wish (interest, need within the marriage, etc.) without worrying that you will be missing some crucial prerequisite data from earlier in the book.  Each article is self-contained, and while they all build on the same topic, they can be read in any order.

The book is split into four sections celebrating the four “Passion Principles” as Shannon calls them, the four “sides” of sex: Spiritual, Mental, Emotional and of course, Physical.  It’s further subdivided into general categories within those sections, and then the topics themselves.  For myself, I usually jump straight to the table of contents when checking out a book on marriage, so I thought you might find it helpful as well:

  1. Passion Principles #1: Celebrate the Spiritual Side of Sex
    1. One + One = One
      1. What was God thinking when He created sex?
      2. Why does God say we have to be married to have sex?
      3. What if we went too far sexually before we married?
    2. The Genesis of Sex
      1. What does the Old Testament say about sex?
      2. Why is the Song of Solomon even in the Bible?
      3. Why did God tell Hosea to marry a prostitute?
    3. The Gospel Truth
      1. What did Jesus say about sex? And how can He possibly relate to our struggles?
      2. Why is the relationship between Jesus and His church described as a Bridegroom/bride relationship?
      3. What is the connection between sexuality and spirituality?
      4. Will there be sex in heaven?
    4. Playing by the rule book
      1. How can we know that what we are doing in bed is okay with God?
      2. How does the whole submission thing work in marriage?
      3. What if we disagree on something sexual?  Who wins the argument?
  2. Passion Principles #2: Celebrate the Mental Side of Sex
    1. Sex on the Brain
      1. Why do humans think about sex so much?
      2. Why do I rarely/often think about sex in comparison to my spouse?
      3. What is the difference between love and lust?
    2. Getting on the Same Page
      1. How did we get such different ideas about sex and love?
      2. How can we get in the mood for sex more often?
      3. Is it really possible to be “naked and feel no shame”?
    3. Rules of (Mental) Engagement
      1. Is it possible to stop thinking sexual thoughts?
      2. What is the harm in using a little pornography to warm things up?
      3. What if I want to turn a fantasy into reality?
    4. Moving Forward Mentally
      1. How can I get past his or her sexual past?
      2. How can I get past my own sexual past?
  3. Passion Principle #3: Celebrate the Emotional Side of Sex
    1. Moving Beyond Abuse
      1. Is it possible to enjoy sex when I have been sexually abused?
      2. Should I tell my spouse about the abuse or keep it to myself?
      3. How can I help my spouse heal from the sexual abuses he or she suffered?
    2. Moving Beyond Betrayal
      1. What if I find it difficult to trust my spouse?
      2. Can marital trust be reestablished when broken?  If not, is divorce an option?
    3. Evolution of a Relationship
      1. What if my heart is telling me that I married the wrong person?
      2. What is the secret to staying together forever?
  4. Passion Principle #4: Celebrate the Physical Side of Sex
    1. Hygiene 101
      1. How can I bring my A-game into the bedroom?
      2. How can we enjoy the afterglow without the after-mess?
    2. Eureka!
      1. How can I (re)discover my spouse’s sexual hot spots?
      2. How can we balance mismatched sex drives?
      3. Will having children negatively affect our sex life?
    3. Let Freedom Ring!
      1. Is the “missionary position” the only “holy” way to have sex?
      2. What about oral or anal sex in marriage?
      3. What about sex toys in marriage?
    4. Shannon’s Question to You
      1. Where is your “finish line”?

Quite the list of questions, isn’t it?  Some are easily answered with the Bible, and some are answered using reason whether the Bible is silent.  All in all, I enjoyed the book immensely and believe it to be an excellent resource for any marriage.

If you want a copy, you can buy it on amazon for Kindle, Paperback or MP3 CD (Again, it’s nice to see a Kindle book listed as cheaper than the print edition).

37 Questions for spouses to ask each other about sex

37 sex questions for spouses to ask each other

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5 thoughts on “Book Review: The Passion Principles”

  1. Gottfried Bernard says:

    This is one of the outstanding Books on this topic besides Real Marriage.
    I am glad that it will be translated into the german Language. My Wife aand I will “push” this Book in our Christian Bookstore.

  2. Lisa says:

    This sounds like a great resource! Linking up on Laura’s blog.

  3. Pamela says:

    I love reading book reviews. This one looks interesting and you’ve written the review so well. Thank you for giving us a chance to win one. ~Pamela

    1. Jay Dee says:

      You are very welcome. Good luck!

  4. Dan says:

    I like listening to Shannon on sexymarriageradio.com with Dr. Corey Allen. They have some interesting topics and all of the podcasts have been archived and are easy to access on the website. Most are around 25 minutes and you can listen while doing other things. If you miss something, like Youtube you just slide back and replay it. Good job on giving an idea of the writing style and contents of the book.

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