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Erica Campbell Says Self-Pleasure Is Not A Pure Act

"Where does God go when you are self-pleasuring? Where does He go?"

Celebrity News

Every time I masturbate, I can't help but think that God and my ancestors are sitting somewhere in the clouds shaking their heads at my choices in porn. I am a woman of God with a high libido who is not married, leaving me in quite a conundrum and I know that I am not alone in the struggle. Am I dishonoring my faith by touching myself and indulging in self-pleasure? According to Erica Campbell, the answer is yes.

Paras Griffin / Getty

The Mary Mary singer recently appeared on The Breakfast Club to talk about her new book More Than Pretty: Doing the Soul Work that Uncovers Your True Beauty and shared her beliefs on masturbation and self-pleasure and wants you to ask yourself this question next time you pull up the "private" tab on your browser for a midnight dip in the cookie jar:

"Where does God go when you are self-pleasuring? Where does He go? Somebody asked me the question, 'Was it wrong, was it right?' I know some churches say for the bruthas. 'It'll keep you from slipping up. Go ahead and handle yourself. I've heard some women say, 'I take care of myself before I go out on a date.'"

To Erica, purity is more than about going to church and praying, it's about living a lifestyle that honors God; and in her case, that means refraining from self-pleasure altogether:

"I think about purity and purity happens before the actual action of whatever you do. Whatever you watch, whatever you listen to, whatever you do with yourself. Your mind being a place of purity is very crucial. But I think in our society today, everything is sexualized. You could be selling chicken and there will be a pair of boobs there. It's just everywhere. So I think guarding your mind and guarding your thoughts and treating sex and sexuality as something beautiful that God created that's supposed to be beautiful and otherworldly and you come together with somebody and your lives come together. It's not so cheap."

The singer, who has been married to her husband, Warryn Campbell since 2011, said that as a married woman, abiding by this principle has been especially important. While there are a number of studies that suggest the benefits of masturbation in marriage, Erica says that there's no gray area when it comes to the vows you and your said in front of God. She explained:

"I just don't think it's supposed to be done by yourself. I got an amazing, fine, wonderful husband so I just don't have to. I got a husband there. Now, I know for singles, it might be a different story but there are married people who would just rather handle it themselves. And I can't imagine what your husband feels like. Now, I gotta compete with your toys. It's too much."

To masturbate or not to masturbate? That is the question that Erica Campbell says that you and God have to have one-on-one, but ultimately, she believes that every time we achieve the big "O" on our own, we're doing ourselves a disservice:

"That's between you and God but I just think when you are trying to live a pure life, when you are trying to hold yourself and keep yourself, for this beautiful, special wonderful moment or life with a spouse, don't lessen it. Don't cheapen it."

Our plan isn't God's plan, and Erica wants us to know that our handheld vibrators are nowhere in the blueprint.

"I'm not judging nobody. I'm just talking about what God created. And it's always the enemy's job to pervert it, to twist it, to corrupt it, to make it filthy. He gave us free will. We can choose Him or not."

While we may all have our own beliefs when it comes to spirituality and religion, Erica says there is no black-and-white when it comes to self-pleasure in her household for this reason:

"There is a way that is right. There is a way that is honoring God. And the scripture says, there is a way that seems right to man. That doesn't mean that it lines up with what God wants for you. And I feel like God's plan is always a bigger, better, more awesome plan that we can't see and we don't understand but I believe there is greatness in that obedience, in that faith."

What do you think about Erica's comments, do you think masturbating is dishonoring God? Let us know in the comments!

Featured image by Eugene Powers / Shutterstock.com

Before she was Amira Unplugged, rapper, singer, and a Becoming a Popstar contestant on MTV, she was Amira Daughtery, a twenty-five year-old Georgian, with aspirations of becoming a lawyer. “I thought my career path was going to lead me to law because that’s the way I thought I would help people,” Amira tells xoNecole. “[But] I always came back to music.”

A music lover since childhood, Amira grew up in an artistic household where passion for music was emphasized. “My dad has always been my huge inspiration for music because he’s a musician himself and is so passionate about the history of music.” Amira’s also dealt with deafness in one ear since she was a toddler, a condition which she says only makes her more “intentional” about the music she makes, to ensure that what she hears inside her head can translate the way she wants it to for audiences.

“The loss of hearing means a person can’t experience music in the conventional way,” she says. “I’ve always responded to bigger, bolder anthemic songs because I can feel them [the vibrations] in my body, and I want to be sure my music does this for deaf/HOH people and everyone.”

A Black woman wearing a black hijab and black and gold dress stands in between two men who are both wearing black pants and colorful jackets and necklaces

Amira Unplugged and other contestants on Becoming a Popstar

Amira Unplugged / MTV

In order to lift people’s spirits at the beginning of the pandemic, Amira began posting videos on TikTok of herself singing and using sign language so her music could reach her deaf fans as well. She was surprised by how quickly she was able to amass a large audience. It was through her videos that she caught the attention of a talent scout for MTV’s new music competition show for rising TikTok singers, Becoming a Popstar. After a three-month process, Amira was one of those picked to be a contestant on the show.

Becoming a Popstar, as Amira describes, is different from other music competition shows we’ve all come to know over the years. “Well, first of all, it’s all original music. There’s not a single cover,” she says. “We have to write these songs in like a day or two and then meet with our producers, meet with our directors. Every week, we are producing a full project for people to vote on and decide if they’d listen to it on the radio.”

To make sure her deaf/HOH audiences can feel her songs, she makes sure to “add more bass, guitar, and violin in unique patterns.” She also incorporates “higher pitch sounds with like chimes, bells, and piccolo,” because, she says, they’re easier to feel. “But it’s less about the kind of instrument and more about how I arrange the pattern of the song. Everything I do is to create an atmosphere, a sensation, to make my music a multi-sensory experience.”

She says that working alongside the judges–pop stars Joe Jonas and Becky G, and choreographer Sean Bankhead – has helped expand her artistry. “Joe was really more about the vocal quality and the timber and Becky was really about the passion of [the song] and being convinced this was something you believed in,” she says. “And what was really great about [our choreographer] Sean is that obviously he’s a choreographer to the stars – Lil Nas X, Normani – but he didn’t only focus on choreo, he focused on stage presence, he focused on the overall message of the song. And I think all those critiques week to week helped us hone in on what we wanted to be saying with our next song.”

As her star rises, it’s been both her Muslim faith and her friends, whom she calls “The Glasses Gang” (“because none of us can see!”), that continue to ground her. “The Muslim and the Muslima community have really gone hard [supporting me] and all these people have come together and I truly appreciate them,” Amira says. “I have just been flooded with DMs and emails and texts from [young muslim kids] people who have just been so inspired,” she says. “People who have said they have never seen anything like this, that I embody a lot of the style that they wanted to see and that the message hit them, which is really the most important thing to me.”

A Black woman wears a long, salmon pink hijab, black outfit and pink boots, smiling down at the camera with her arm outstretched to it.

Amira Unplugged

Amira Unplugged / MTV

Throughout the show’s production, she was able to continue to uphold her faith practices with the help of the crew, such as making sure her food was halal, having time to pray, dressing modestly, and working with female choreographers. “If people can accept this, can learn, and can grow, and bring more people into the fold of this industry, then I’m making a real difference,” she says.

Though she didn’t win the competition, this is only the beginning for Amira. Whether it’s on Becoming a Popstar or her videos online, Amira has made it clear she has no plans on going anywhere but up. “I’m so excited that I’ve gotten this opportunity because this is really, truly what I think I’m meant to do.”

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