I have occasion today to describe the nature of my most recent fall downs, as I like to call them, because it has happened again over the last weekend. I find that it is quite pointless feeling disappointed about them, although they are disappointing, because feeling so does nothing to prevent them from recurring. So let me rather just describe them.
Of course, I have described them, both in the build-up phase and in the after-effects quite elaborately, I feel, in previous entries, and I do not wish to repeat what has been stated before.
Should I call these episodes fall-downs at all? Yes, because I still would prefer them not to happen, and I am still aiming to attain a state of being in which they do not happen. The fall-down, or the episode, is a reversion to an earlier habit of masturbation, in which the construction of an elaborate mental fantasy brings about sexual arousal, and release. Previously, this was a daily practice with me, for a number of years. I always felt uncomfortable with the practice, but I used to rationalise it to myself. When my discomfiture reached a point of really wanting to give it up, I found that I simply could not bring myself to stop it.
When I took to spiritual life in a serious way, sometime in my late twenties, the habit did stop, for a while. At that time I suffered from many dreams which brought about involuntary arousal and release, and I found them very disturbing and depressing. Then came the discovery of internet pornography, and this became a habit which occurred with some regularity, at intervals of two to three months, ever since.
The most recent manifestations occur in this manner: first comes a strong build-up of repressed sexual desire. This first stage is not what I would regard as a natural function. Rather, it is the result of a number of choices which I make on a daily basis with regard to how I choose to view the world, and to assign value to my thoughts, and my sense perceptions. For example, I may see something quite wonderful in nature, like the build up of clouds, or a spray of stars in the night sky, and these ought to be sufficient, and more than sufficient, to excite my interest, wonder and gratitude, but, instead of doing so, my attention is pulled by what is going on in nearby houses, or in some people passing nearby, and the nature of this curiosity is sexual.
This goes on for some time, and, after some time, an opportunity presents itself, in terms of space and time, to further arouse my interest by recourse to the internet. It begins with erotic literature, because in erotic literature the form of the fantasy, and its interactive dynamic is presented. In the beginning, the fantasy is guided by the images of all the people at whom I have looked in the preceding weeks, and they all may be considered as a certain type. At this stage, my mind will begin constructing the images of a unique fantasy, and will do so in a continuous way, changing images and elements, and thoughts of motion, with a rapid intensity, because no one image is ever satisfying.
The desire to actualise the desire may lead me to active forms of contemplation of establishing a connection with someone with a corresponding desire, and so I may look at some personal advertisements in the casual encounter sections, or on some match-making website which caters for these sorts of things, but, apart from being disgusted by what I find there, and indeed, I never find any advertisement which is really appealing, my present situation in life makes the entire enterprise most impracticable (for which I thank God) and so I give it up. Giving up any plan for actualising my desire in the flesh, I give myself the permission to look at some image on the internet.
With regard to the image, what I am looking for is something alluring, but not explicit, and such images are to by found in popular media, without recourse to hard-core pornography. Of course, in searching through the images, one is inevitably exposed to the more explicit images, and so one’s mind becomes polluted.
There are a number of images in popular media, in Japanese and Indian soap operas especially, which are most successful in arousing one’s desire, but no one image is ever truly satisfying, because one inevitably passes from one to another to another, without ever finding the perfect one. The reason for this, I suspect, is that what one is really looking for is not only an image, but a relationship, and not only a relationship, but a relationship which is based on genuine mutual interest and regard, and not on wealth.
Then I set aside the search through images, and find that my mind has become geared towards constructing fantasies. There are certain parameters which, thankfully, must be observed, respecting my present situation. As such, it is difficult to construct a fantasy which really matches with my present social situation, which is different than what was the case previously. So, in the last few occasions at least, the fantasy-building ran in directions which did not match-up with my present life-circumstances, but which somehow or other had a powerful allure.
The object of the fantasy is another dimension which must observe the set parameters, for which, again, I am grateful, and so, at least on the most recent occasion, this last weekend, the person imagined was not someone I knew, but was someone that I had a brief glimpse of some months before in a public place. Of course, I have forgotten most of their physical characteristics, but the one or two which remained in my mind was sufficient. Then the fantasy construction begins, using elements of what I have already encountered in my internet searches, beginning with the images and postures which I purposefully looked up – the soft core pornography, if you will, and inevitably driving towards the other images which I picked up on the way, the hard core pornography. I am subjugated, and the other is cruel and triumphant.
So the fantasy runs, but I do not want to attain sexual release. These days, I find myself only wanting to build and view the fantasy, and build and view it again. This process continues, and I fall asleep. But while I am sleeping, the fantasy continues to run, and, in my sleep, the sexual release is attained. I wake up feeling dirty and disappointed.
It is difficult to imagine ever being free from this condition of life, but I am still trying for it.