I was looking through my daughter's Internet history and found that she was watching something called ASMR on youtube. My wife and I watched these things and we were totally enthralled listening to someone cut soap with a knife.

And if you're like me last night, wondering what an ASMR is:

Autonomous sensory meridian response, sometimes auto sensory meridian response, is a tingling sensation that typically begins on the scalp and moves down the back of the neck and upper spine. A pleasant form of paresthesia, it has been compared with auditory-tactile synesthesia and may overlap with frisson

ASMR - Wiki

I know that certain forms of self-medication including mesmerization and hypnotism could be considered illicit by some Catholic books for examinations of conscience (i.e. handbook of prayers) under the 5th and 8th commandments.

Can the same principles that apply to that apply to this? Is ASMR any worse because it's something that is apparently scientifically designed to produce some sort of a calming response, as opposed to something that is not scientifically designed, like a recording of rain, crickets chirping or whatnot?

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    Gregorian chant can be an ASMR for the soul. When taking a spa massage normally the background music can be an ASMR. But listening to the explanation ans samples videos in the youtube...for me I find it weird. Mar 26, 2020 at 5:20
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    I believe that intention of the heart is critical in things like this. Mar 26, 2020 at 12:59
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    Can you provide a brief definition of ASMR and also cite the "books for examinations of conscience" that consider "certain forms of self-medication, mesmerization and hypnotism" "illicit"? It seems your question is about the morality of taking pleasure in listening to or watching something.
    – Geremia
    Mar 26, 2020 at 15:04
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    The first thing to check, as you research this, is for hair on the palms of your hands. 8^D Mar 26, 2020 at 15:10

2 Answers 2


No, ASMR isn’t self-stimulation. The “A” stands for “Autonomic,” which means the body does it on its own. It’s our body’s own natural response to pleasurable sounds. God gave us this capacity to experience pleasure. Yes, we need to guard it like any of our other senses, but it’s not inherently sinful.

Further, as with any form of art or entertainment, ASMR is only harmful if someone uses it to convey evil messages. Take standup comedy. It’s so often used to convey derogatory stories, but no one would claim it’s inherently sinful. There are hilarious comedians, who don’t curse or talk about lewd subjects. ASMR isn’t bad either. Honestly, it seems mostly wholesome. The worst I’ve seen is people make ASMR mukbangs and it seems gluttonous.

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    I would add... is eating ice cream, or fruit, or any other "delicious" food sinful? Is taking a walk in a park sinful? Is smelling a flower sinful? Well... maybe. All of these things can potentially become idols or outlets of hedonism, but just because something is pleasing doesn't automatically make it sinful to enjoy. (At least that's my perspective. Ascetics may hold differing opinions.) That said, I'll also note that ASMR is not immune to Rule 34.
    – Matthew
    Jul 9, 2021 at 2:24
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    – agarza
    Jul 10, 2021 at 20:14

God never controls, satan does.

ASMR is controlling your response, thus, controlling you.

A demon which is a spirit could be behind this.

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