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Question: Is quitting this way acceptable for now?
Yes - 5 (13.5%)
No - 10 (27%)
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Author Topic: Overcoming my porn problem in parts?  (Read 6261 times) Average Rating: 0
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BalmungSama
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« on: March 30, 2013, 03:14:11 AM »

Okay, I'll spare the overly detailed talks abut my guilt, ambivalence, loathing, and various embarassing stories.
I have a porn problem, and I've had it for years. Which is saying something, since I'm only 21. I want to stop it, but time and time again I feel a very powerful urge which grows quickly.
I have one idea which may lighten the burden of quitting... but I don't know if it's right or not.
Basically, my idea is to do it in steps. The urge to watch porn comes when I'm aroused, and usually I can fight it. Sometimes I give in. ...That happens a lot. But what if I simply masturbated, without the porn? Keep in mind that the masturbation will be resisted as well. But if I can maybe break the association between porn and masturbating, my enemies decrease in number.

I understand that it's also a sin, and a very serious one. I just want to know if my strategy would be permitted. If not, I'll go back to trying to stop both at once. I just need to know.
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« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2013, 03:19:20 AM »

And yes, I realize how terrible it is that i'm asking this during Lent of all times.
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« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2013, 03:26:41 AM »

I'm in the same boat and it really sucks. God won't let us do anything fun.
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You're really on to something here. Tattoo to keep you from masturbating, chew to keep you from fornicating... it's a whole new world where you outsource your crosses. You're like a Christian entrepreneur or something.
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« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2013, 03:35:52 AM »

I'm not complaining that He doesn't let me do these things. At least.... not now, I don't think.
Yes, it's fun, but it's nothing compared to real intimacy. God blessed me with a wonderful girlfriend, and while we're semi-long-distance (we go to schol in different cities, so we mostly see each other during breaks), just being around her satisfies me more than this garbage does. That's the love we're mean for. Not the disgusting things that I get off on...
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« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2013, 07:51:28 AM »

In my humble opinion, it would be better to "relieve pressure" immediately than to indulge in worse forms of perversity (pornography), but I don't think this is necessarily a good long-term approach. Kind of the lesser of two evils, I suppose. Alas, what you've already exposed yourself to in the way of pornography is fairly easily retrievable in your mind, but perhaps it could help you create distance from the pornography.
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« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2013, 11:15:54 AM »

Sounds to me like you need a Savior. Smiley
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ting ting ting


« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2013, 12:01:20 PM »

Here here. Its a difficult problem to deal with. I've quit smoking twice. I could do it a thousand times before I could go two weeks without masturbating. In all seriousness its not an easy thing to over come. I'm struggling too. The guilt and what not. 25 year old single male with access to the internet.

Lord, have mercy. Please. Tongue
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« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2013, 12:07:36 PM »

A few things I'd like to add:

1) I think Lent is the perfect time to approach this.

2) Are there any priests or spiritual fathers on the forum that could give us some advice? This is a really good one to help with. Even a good stern talking to and waging of the finger would be nice. I think we all feel a little isolated and embarrassed about this one.

3) I've been tackling the Philokalia the last few days to find what I can in there on the subject. I went into the back of the book and wrote out the subjects and page numbers.
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« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2013, 02:24:08 PM »

I've never been a drug addict, but I really think that quitting drugs is easier than quitting masturbation.
I had several attempts to do it before I realized that it is probably impossible for a human being, and so I took a one-week fast and during that week I tried to avoid looking at women as much as I could, and I prayed to God to purge me of this passion.

And so He did. During that week I had a couple of fits, where I had to jump under cold shower to suppress desire, but now I'm clean for more than three years, and I'm still single and I'm still very much attracted by the opposite sex.

The same way I quit smoking and drinking, or more proprely, God cleared me from these passions.

Also, if you hear somebody arguing that masturbation isn't a sin (some people will do this occasionally, because it is so hard to suppress it that they start to think it's natural), you don't believe them, since if it wasn't a sin you wouldn't feel remorse every time you do it.

The majority of Russian Christians believe that in Corinthians 6:9 (Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind), by effeminates Paul means people who masturbate. It's probably hard to draw such conclusion from the English translation, but the original Greek word 'malakia' (which means 'soft', 'easily compressed', elastic) in Russian theology is strongly associated with masturbation.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2013, 02:36:10 PM by Nikolai Sergeev » Logged
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« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2013, 02:49:50 PM »

The Jesuit way:

Quote
PARTICULAR AND DAILY EXAMEN

It contains in it three times, and two to examine oneself.

The first time is in the morning, immediately on rising, when one ought to propose to guard himself with diligence against that particular sin or defect which he wants to correct and amend.

The second time is after dinner, when one is to ask of God our Lord what one wants, namely, grace to remember how many times he has fallen into that particular sin or defect, and to amend himself in the future. Then let him make the first Examen, asking account of his soul of that particular thing proposed, which he wants to correct and amend. Let him go over hour by hour, or period by period, commencing at the hour he rose, and continuing up to the hour and instant of the present examen, and let him make in the first line of the G==== as many dots as were the times he has fallen into that particular sin or defect. Then let him resolve anew to amend himself up to the second Examen which he will make.

The third time: After supper, the second Examen will be made, in the same way, hour by hour, commencing at the first Examen and continuing up to the present (second) one, and let him make in the second line of the same G==== as many dots as were the times he has fallen into that particular sin or defect.

FOUR ADDITIONS FOLLOW TO RID ONESELF SOONER OF THAT PARTICULAR SIN OR DEFECT

First Addition. The first Addition is that each time one falls into that particular sin or defect, let him put his hand on his breast, grieving for having fallen: which can be done even in the presence of many, without their perceiving what he is doing.

Second Addition. The second: As the first line of the G==== means the first Examen, and the second line the second Examen, let him look at night if there is amendment from the first line to the second, that is, from the first Examen to the second.

Third Addition. The third: To compare the second day with the first; that is, the two Examens of the present day with the other two Examens of the previous day, and see if he has amended himself from one day to the other.

Fourth Addition. The fourth Addition: To compare one week with another, and see if he has amended himself in the present week over the week past.

Note. It is to be noted that the first (large) G==== which follows means the Sunday: the second (smaller), the Monday: the third, the Tuesday, and so on.



(The Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius of Loyola 22)
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« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2013, 03:45:38 PM »

The majority of Russian Christians believe that in Corinthians 6:9 (Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind), by effeminates Paul means people who masturbate. It's probably hard to draw such conclusion from the English translation, but the original Greek word 'malakia' (which means 'soft', 'easily compressed', elastic) in Russian theology is strongly associated with masturbation.

To elaborate on this: malaka in modern Greek means 'wanker'.
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« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2013, 03:48:24 PM »

To elaborate on this: malaka in modern Greek means 'wanker'.

The most popular word in the Greek language, generally replacing punctuation. In Greece it's used so much that in practice it basically means "dude", "guy", "buddy".
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« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2013, 03:49:54 PM »

"Ouwe rukker" - "old wanker" in Dutch - means "buddy" as well.
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« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2013, 04:53:02 PM »

What's the "abusers of themselves" mean then?  So is the word "effeminate" a wrong translation?  Because obviously it has a completely different meaning and association in the English language.
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« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2013, 04:53:30 PM »

I cannot put my two cents in since this is in Convert Issues. Though perhaps that's for the best  angel
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« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2013, 04:54:54 PM »

So is the word "effeminate" a wrong translation?  Because obviously it has a completely different meaning and association in the English language.

Nah. Only since the medieval Byzantine canonists has the word malaka come to mean masturbator.
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« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2013, 05:26:20 PM »

What's the "abusers of themselves" mean then?  So is the word "effeminate" a wrong translation?  Because obviously it has a completely different meaning and association in the English language.

The root verb of malakos is malasso - "to soften (leather/skin), appease, relieve". In the Gospels malakos is used to describe the "soft clothes" of the entourage at Herod's court.  

There's a plant called malache, ~ "mellow" (Lat. malva), because it was used as a laxative. It's usually macerated and it's all gooey.

[i width=300]http://planteraremedicinale.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Malva-sylvestris-Nalba-.jpg[/i]

The Vulgate translates with molles ("soft ones"), while the Peshitta has mchable from the vb. ܚܒܠ - "to corrupt".

How about "metrosexuals"?

Some context:

Quote
"[The Nervii] allowed no wine or other luxury goods to be brought into their territory, because they judged that by these things their spirits were relaxed and their virtue lessened; they, on the other hand, were fierce folk of great virtue."

...nihil pati vini reliquarumque rerum ad luxuriam pertinentium inferri, quod his rebus relanguescere animos eorum et remitti virtutem existimarent; esse homines feros magnaeque virtutis.

(Iulius Caesar, De bello Gallico 2.15.4)

***

"[The Suebi] do not permit wine to be imported to themselves at all, because they think that by this thing men  grow soft and effeminate in putting up with labor."

Vinum omnino ad se importari non patiuntur, quod ea re ad laborem ferendum remollescere homines atque effeminari arbitrantur.

(Ibidem 4.2.6)
« Last Edit: March 30, 2013, 06:00:07 PM by Romaios » Logged
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« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2013, 05:26:44 PM »

What my priest told me, I will with humbleness share:

- Try to gain selfcontrol and pick up your chotki (or just pray it on the fingers, the Jesusprayer).
- He also stressed the importance of getting occupied with other things when those attacks sets in
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« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2013, 11:52:08 AM »

See what I've found on Yahoo Answers:

Quote
SO it means
Malakia" (abstract noun, plural "malakies") is used as

The literal act of masturbation
A slang word for semen specifically produced by that act.
It also can be used to describe nonsense.
An item considered worthless, a whatchamacallit (cadigan).
A mistake, or (ironically and degradingly) a time-consuming non-productive action. The parallel exists since these actions are a way to consume excessive energy and satisfy a desire, more or less like wanking.
It's stupid. When someone says, "you are doing malakies", it translates into "you are being stupid".
In many cases, when someone wants to refer to acts classifying as "Malakia" or to a person classifying as "Malakas" this can by implied by the up-and-down movement of a closed fist (clear allusion to the act of masturbation).

The use of "malakia" to mean "masturbation" traces back to Medieval Greek. It is used in this sense in the Life of St. Andrew the Fool and in the Life of St. Niphon, both of which date to the tenth century.[12]
« Last Edit: March 31, 2013, 11:54:58 AM by Nikolai Sergeev » Logged
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« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2013, 06:35:23 PM »

What my priest told me, I will with humbleness share:

- Try to gain selfcontrol and pick up your chotki (or just pray it on the fingers, the Jesusprayer).
- He also stressed the importance of getting occupied with other things when those attacks sets in

Very solid advice.  If you exhaust yourself in work, discipline, prayer every day, you will soon find you'll go weeks without even feeling an urge.  It's when you have free time that problems arise. 
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ting ting ting


« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2013, 08:12:43 PM »

Thanks for the advice so far. And the information on wankers (heeee... Grin).

It's encouraging and helpful.
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« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2013, 08:14:24 PM »

If you are burning with this urge, its better to plan a marriage soon.
There are ways to block adult sites using 3rd party DNS resolvers but it takes will power if you want to stay away from the filth completely.
Also remember that these girls you are seeing are somebodies daughters.
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« Reply #22 on: March 31, 2013, 11:22:52 PM »

And yes, I realize how terrible it is that i'm asking this during Lent of all times.
Actually, Lent is the perfect time to ask this Smiley
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« Reply #23 on: March 31, 2013, 11:25:13 PM »

There is no way that that method is okay.
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« Reply #24 on: March 31, 2013, 11:32:01 PM »

Something that might help you is to install this program on your computer, and have it linked to a trusted friend's email address so that only that friend has the password. You'll have to fidget with the initial setting a little bit, or else it'll basically just block half the Internet.
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« Reply #25 on: April 01, 2013, 02:20:35 AM »

How embarrassing would it be if your mother saw you, how much more is it that God and the angels see it, every time? Just stop.
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« Reply #26 on: April 01, 2013, 09:38:43 PM »

you won't be able to stop on your own, you need help, I strongly suggest you begin praying the rosary, 15 decades a day
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ting ting ting


« Reply #27 on: April 01, 2013, 10:12:20 PM »

Something that might help you is to install this program on your computer, and have it linked to a trusted friend's email address so that only that friend has the password. You'll have to fidget with the initial setting a little bit, or else it'll basically just block half the Internet.

I downloaded this. I tested it. It barks at me. Love it ^____^
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« Reply #28 on: April 01, 2013, 11:33:12 PM »

you won't be able to stop on your own, you need help, I strongly suggest you begin praying the rosary, 15 decades a day

I am a little picky here and instead I do advice the Jesusprayer and be occupied with other things. The Lord himself said that fasting and praying is the only way to overcome certain evil things (I know the passage these lines where taken from, but the point is): freetime makes you an easy target for "the ole bad one"
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« Reply #29 on: April 02, 2013, 12:29:44 AM »

you won't be able to stop on your own, you need help, I strongly suggest you begin praying the rosary, 15 decades a day
Please do not advocate Roman Catholic rituals on the Convert Issues board. Thank you.

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« Reply #30 on: April 02, 2013, 08:35:00 PM »

The majority of Russian Christians believe that in Corinthians 6:9 (Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind), by effeminates Paul means people who masturbate. It's probably hard to draw such conclusion from the English translation, but the original Greek word 'malakia' (which means 'soft', 'easily compressed', elastic) in Russian theology is strongly associated with masturbation.

To elaborate on this: malaka in modern Greek means 'wanker'.
im pretty sure malako or something like that means soft, but your right that word does mean wanker
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« Reply #31 on: April 02, 2013, 08:40:09 PM »

Another thing, that I have on the right to my computer, is a icon of Christ The Teacher. He stares right at me, at least for me, this has been very effective and indeed helpful.
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« Reply #32 on: April 03, 2013, 12:57:37 AM »

Okay, I'll spare the overly detailed talks abut my guilt, ambivalence, loathing, and various embarassing stories.
I have a porn problem, and I've had it for years. Which is saying something, since I'm only 21. I want to stop it, but time and time again I feel a very powerful urge which grows quickly.
I have one idea which may lighten the burden of quitting... but I don't know if it's right or not.
Basically, my idea is to do it in steps. The urge to watch porn comes when I'm aroused, and usually I can fight it. Sometimes I give in. ...That happens a lot. But what if I simply masturbated, without the porn? Keep in mind that the masturbation will be resisted as well. But if I can maybe break the association between porn and masturbating, my enemies decrease in number.

I understand that it's also a sin, and a very serious one. I just want to know if my strategy would be permitted. If not, I'll go back to trying to stop both at once. I just need to know.

You should discuss this with an experienced confessor.

That being said, my completely unprofessional and personal opinion is that it's better that you struggle to fight both. As you seem already to be aware, pornography and masturbation are really two degrees of the same impulse to sin, one which indulges the mind, and the other which indulges the body. Of these, pornography is closer in proximity to the original assault of temptation upon the mind than the act of masturbation is. Once one has reached the point of masturbation, even without pornography, his mind will have provided the thoughts necessary in order to arouse the body into sin, such that at the point of masturbation, abstaining from pornography will not contribute to breaking the underlying sickness which causes both the sin of watching pornography and the sin of masturbation.

If anything, you probably have the order reversed. In combatting sin, one needs to go in the reverse order that sin progresses, that is, by stopping sinful thoughts before they can become sinful acts, and attempting to cut off temptations when they first begin to assault the mind before they can lead us into sinful thoughts.
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« Reply #33 on: April 03, 2013, 10:43:54 AM »

The following blog deals with the problem of addictions including porn:

http://orthodoxyandrecovery.blogspot.com
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« Reply #34 on: April 03, 2013, 10:54:22 AM »

The following blog deals with the problem of addictions including porn:

http://orthodoxyandrecovery.blogspot.com

The owner of the blog also happens to be one of the more insightful posters on this forum. I don't think he posts during fasts, though.
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« Reply #35 on: April 07, 2013, 04:29:10 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.
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Quote
You're really on to something here. Tattoo to keep you from masturbating, chew to keep you from fornicating... it's a whole new world where you outsource your crosses. You're like a Christian entrepreneur or something.
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« Reply #36 on: April 07, 2013, 04:41:10 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

We don't really have a hierarchy of sin in the Orthodox Church. No sin is greater than another... to a point... sort of... ok, I kinda lost my wording here. Sorry. Either way, no. Its best to do neither. I wish I could explain it better, but I'm sure someone will.

As far as urges, the fathers explain it well. We, being in a fallen state are subject to the natural urges that are made worse by the evil one and his demons and us being young men. God doesn't temp us (cause the urges), but allows us to be tempted. I take consolation in the fact that he doesn't allow us to fall into temptations that we can't handle.

That was my weak attempt at explaining and paraphrasing the fathers. The Philokalia is good for stuff like this. I've been reading it by subject from the index. Uber helpful.

"What gives," however, goes through my head all the time regardless. Tongue
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« Reply #37 on: April 07, 2013, 05:31:55 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

Wouldn't God rather let us steal at night than let us take a gun and shoot a couple of people for couple of bucks? I don't like this whole idea of gradation.

I see a strange assumption, that watching porn and/or masturbate isn't commiting an adultery. It's like the whole "it's not sex if no penetration occurs" explanations. Whether you stole a dollar or a grand - you are a thief. The sin is about what you are doing to yourself, because no man is able to bring evil to anyone, except to himself. That you are doing it through hurting other people is just stealing a grand, rather than a dollar, but the point still stands - it's thievery and there's no reason to justify it. "For the Son of God became man" not so that we might become less of a problem, but "so that we might become God".
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« Reply #38 on: April 07, 2013, 05:58:33 PM »

What my priest told me, I will with humbleness share:

- Try to gain selfcontrol and pick up your chotki (or just pray it on the fingers, the Jesusprayer).
- He also stressed the importance of getting occupied with other things when those attacks sets in

Very solid advice.  If you exhaust yourself in work, discipline, prayer every day, you will soon find you'll go weeks without even feeling an urge.  It's when you have free time that problems arise. 

Precisely Father.  Idle hands are the devil's tools. 
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« Reply #39 on: April 07, 2013, 06:11:23 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.     
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« Reply #40 on: April 07, 2013, 06:58:21 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.
When you look at porn, you are contributing to the subjugation of the woman so no, God would never "rather we look at porn" because in the end the same principal still applies, you are using someone's daughter as a sex toy.
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« Reply #41 on: April 07, 2013, 07:33:50 PM »

Okay, I'll spare the overly detailed talks abut my guilt, ambivalence, loathing, and various embarassing stories.
I have a porn problem, and I've had it for years. Which is saying something, since I'm only 21. I want to stop it, but time and time again I feel a very powerful urge which grows quickly.
I have one idea which may lighten the burden of quitting... but I don't know if it's right or not.
Basically, my idea is to do it in steps. The urge to watch porn comes when I'm aroused, and usually I can fight it. Sometimes I give in. ...That happens a lot. But what if I simply masturbated, without the porn? Keep in mind that the masturbation will be resisted as well. But if I can maybe break the association between porn and masturbating, my enemies decrease in number.

I understand that it's also a sin, and a very serious one. I just want to know if my strategy would be permitted. If not, I'll go back to trying to stop both at once. I just need to know.

GoTo an adult dating website and look for a legitimate partner, then it changes things. (Its no longer masturbation if you have a partner)
 On March 10 you was warned as a non-Orthodox Christian you should not share your "spiritual advice" in the Faith Issues or Convert Issues section. 20 days of warning - MK.
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« Reply #42 on: April 07, 2013, 07:42:54 PM »

Okay, I'll spare the overly detailed talks abut my guilt, ambivalence, loathing, and various embarassing stories.
I have a porn problem, and I've had it for years. Which is saying something, since I'm only 21. I want to stop it, but time and time again I feel a very powerful urge which grows quickly.
I have one idea which may lighten the burden of quitting... but I don't know if it's right or not.
Basically, my idea is to do it in steps. The urge to watch porn comes when I'm aroused, and usually I can fight it. Sometimes I give in. ...That happens a lot. But what if I simply masturbated, without the porn? Keep in mind that the masturbation will be resisted as well. But if I can maybe break the association between porn and masturbating, my enemies decrease in number.

I understand that it's also a sin, and a very serious one. I just want to know if my strategy would be permitted. If not, I'll go back to trying to stop both at once. I just need to know.

GoTo an adult dating website and look for a legitimate partner, then it changes things. (Its no longer masturbation if you have a partner)

By the canons it is double masturbation with twice the penance. 
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« Reply #43 on: April 07, 2013, 07:45:04 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.     


^And before anyone twists my words, I mean intercourse with only wives (spouses) and not with pornography.  One is to "enjoy the wife of his youth." 
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« Reply #44 on: April 07, 2013, 07:54:47 PM »

Okay, I'll spare the overly detailed talks abut my guilt, ambivalence, loathing, and various embarassing stories.
I have a porn problem, and I've had it for years. Which is saying something, since I'm only 21. I want to stop it, but time and time again I feel a very powerful urge which grows quickly.
I have one idea which may lighten the burden of quitting... but I don't know if it's right or not.
Basically, my idea is to do it in steps. The urge to watch porn comes when I'm aroused, and usually I can fight it. Sometimes I give in. ...That happens a lot. But what if I simply masturbated, without the porn? Keep in mind that the masturbation will be resisted as well. But if I can maybe break the association between porn and masturbating, my enemies decrease in number.

I understand that it's also a sin, and a very serious one. I just want to know if my strategy would be permitted. If not, I'll go back to trying to stop both at once. I just need to know.

GoTo an adult dating website and look for a legitimate partner, then it changes things. (Its no longer masturbation if you have a partner)

By the canons it is double masturbation with twice the penance. 

... laugh MagicWife?...
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« Reply #45 on: April 07, 2013, 07:59:46 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


^And before anyone twists my words, I mean intercourse with only wives (spouses) and not with pornography.  One is to "enjoy the wife of his youth."  

I guess you could take a woman as your wife.
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« Reply #46 on: April 07, 2013, 08:14:25 PM »

Okay, I'll spare the overly detailed talks abut my guilt, ambivalence, loathing, and various embarassing stories.
I have a porn problem, and I've had it for years. Which is saying something, since I'm only 21. I want to stop it, but time and time again I feel a very powerful urge which grows quickly.
I have one idea which may lighten the burden of quitting... but I don't know if it's right or not.
Basically, my idea is to do it in steps. The urge to watch porn comes when I'm aroused, and usually I can fight it. Sometimes I give in. ...That happens a lot. But what if I simply masturbated, without the porn? Keep in mind that the masturbation will be resisted as well. But if I can maybe break the association between porn and masturbating, my enemies decrease in number.

I understand that it's also a sin, and a very serious one. I just want to know if my strategy would be permitted. If not, I'll go back to trying to stop both at once. I just need to know.

GoTo an adult dating website and look for a legitimate partner, then it changes things. (Its no longer masturbation if you have a partner)

By the canons it is double masturbation with twice the penance. 

... laugh MagicWife?...

I am sure that you know what you are talking about. 
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« Reply #47 on: April 07, 2013, 08:14:49 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


^And before anyone twists my words, I mean intercourse with only wives (spouses) and not with pornography.  One is to "enjoy the wife of his youth."  

I guess you could take a woman as your wife.

Now I am not so sure. 
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« Reply #48 on: April 07, 2013, 08:19:15 PM »

Why I am called "non-Orthodox" ... Is it b/c of church attendance?
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« Reply #49 on: April 07, 2013, 08:22:01 PM »

Why I am called "non-Orthodox" ... Is it b/c of church attendance?



You are not a member of a Orthodox Christian Church (as defined by the forum rules) neither you are in process to join one. If you have some more questions about oderational action, use the private message (it is also not allowed by the rules).
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« Reply #50 on: April 07, 2013, 08:35:41 PM »

n/m
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« Reply #51 on: April 07, 2013, 09:30:13 PM »

When you look at porn, you are contributing to the subjugation of the woman...

What are you talking about? They're the ones who chose to become porn stars. If anything, I'm contributing to the subjugation of men by making myself vulnerable to manipulation from an attractive woman.
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« Reply #52 on: April 07, 2013, 09:34:02 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.     


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen. Also, what if you don't want a wife? What if I don't want to be married and to have to share my feelings with a woman and all that junk? What if I just want my urge to be satisfied every once in a while? What's so wrong with an occasional wanking? An occasional drink of alcohol is allowed.
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« Reply #53 on: April 07, 2013, 09:35:16 PM »

And this James is only the beggining of your struggles. The things will get much worse when you are in your twenties. I don't think really there should be any problems at 17 though, unless you watch a lot of porn.
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« Reply #54 on: April 07, 2013, 10:15:41 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen. Also, what if you don't want a wife? What if I don't want to be married and to have to share my feelings with a woman and all that junk? What if I just want my urge to be satisfied every once in a while? What's so wrong with an occasional wanking? An occasional drink of alcohol is allowed.

Since you are talking in "ifs," if any of the above were true, that you don't want a wife, etc., then you are not a Christian.  Please repent or leave the flock, immediately.
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« Reply #55 on: April 07, 2013, 10:18:16 PM »

All that junk? Since he doesn't like anything about women except the body parts, why even bother?
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« Reply #56 on: April 07, 2013, 10:23:24 PM »

All that junk? Since he doesn't like anything about women except the body parts, why even bother?

Biro, you are correct, why even bother?  Yet, with the hope of repentence, I replied.  If I am wrong, then may God judge me harshly.  If he is wrong and does not repent, may God judge him harshly, but still with a hope of ultimate repentance.  And if he is a real Christian, he will acknowledge the truth of this.   
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« Reply #57 on: April 07, 2013, 10:28:19 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.     


This was a bit confusing. You say we have very immature young adults, but doesn't that mean they shouldn't marry, if they are immature? Or are you saying they are immature because they don't marry?
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« Reply #58 on: April 07, 2013, 10:35:11 PM »

Well, I know that when one is growing up, as JamesR is, beliefs and attitudes can change. That's true of anyone. But if he treats someone else's feelings as junk, then it's not going to bode well for him and the people he meets. They may want to treat him the same way. And I doubt he'll see it as fair.

Well, I'm not a perfect person either. It's just that if a person has such a negative mindset from the beginning, how's he going to wind up? Happy, or not?

And if he only wants to be around people because of what they can do for him, how long are they going to put up with him? Ever heard of someone getting a drink thrown in their face?

I have a feeling a lot of that is in his future. What a waste.

Yes, I was once young and full of wacky ideas. But you have to learn, or else you get hurt.
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« Reply #59 on: April 08, 2013, 01:22:24 AM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.     


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen. Also, what if you don't want a wife? What if I don't want to be married and to have to share my feelings with a woman and all that junk? What if I just want my urge to be satisfied every once in a while? What's so wrong with an occasional wanking? An occasional drink of alcohol is allowed.

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.
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« Reply #60 on: April 08, 2013, 01:28:04 AM »

Well, I know that when one is growing up, as JamesR is, beliefs and attitudes can change. That's true of anyone. But if he treats someone else's feelings as junk, then it's not going to bode well for him and the people he meets. They may want to treat him the same way. And I doubt he'll see it as fair.

Well, I'm not a perfect person either. It's just that if a person has such a negative mindset from the beginning, how's he going to wind up? Happy, or not?

And if he only wants to be around people because of what they can do for him, how long are they going to put up with him? Ever heard of someone getting a drink thrown in their face?

I have a feeling a lot of that is in his future. What a waste.

Yes, I was once young and full of wacky ideas. But you have to learn, or else you get hurt.

It's just, I don't really understand this "feelings" stuff. I didn't grow up in a household that was necessarily very compassionate to each other's "feelings." The concept of "feelings" is very foreign to me and somewhat frightening, seeing that I always either ignored my feelings or dealt with them on my own, because I was worried about further stressing my parents out.
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« Reply #61 on: April 08, 2013, 01:29:20 AM »

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.

I know that, but at least I'd be receiving the spiritual guidance and harsh treatment I'd need to battle the urges. I don't want to go to a monastery because I think it'll be a fun vacation or something, but because I think it's the only treatment that can help me and the only lifestyle where I can really be spiritually productive.
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« Reply #62 on: April 08, 2013, 01:34:04 AM »

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.

I know that, but at least I'd be receiving the spiritual guidance and harsh treatment I'd need to battle the urges. I don't want to go to a monastery because I think it'll be a fun vacation or something, but because I think it's the only treatment that can help me and the only lifestyle where I can really be spiritually productive.

What, so you're not getting spiritual guidance on this from your priest/confessor?  Huh
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« Reply #63 on: April 08, 2013, 01:39:02 AM »

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.

I know that, but at least I'd be receiving the spiritual guidance and harsh treatment I'd need to battle the urges. I don't want to go to a monastery because I think it'll be a fun vacation or something, but because I think it's the only treatment that can help me and the only lifestyle where I can really be spiritually productive.

What, so you're not getting spiritual guidance on this from your priest/confessor?  Huh

Yeah I am, but there's not really much he can do. All he does is tell me what I should do, but ultimately, it comes down on me to do it. It's not like at a monastery where I have people constantly looking out for me, reminding me, checking up on me and making sure I do the right thing. I'm pretty much on my own.
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« Reply #64 on: April 08, 2013, 01:41:13 AM »

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.

I know that, but at least I'd be receiving the spiritual guidance and harsh treatment I'd need to battle the urges. I don't want to go to a monastery because I think it'll be a fun vacation or something, but because I think it's the only treatment that can help me and the only lifestyle where I can really be spiritually productive.

What, so you're not getting spiritual guidance on this from your priest/confessor?  Huh

Yeah I am, but there's not really much he can do. All he does is tell me what I should do, but ultimately, it comes down on me to do it. It's not like at a monastery where I have people constantly looking out for me, reminding me, checking up on me and making sure I do the right thing. I'm pretty much on my own.

Do not assume you'll be getting your very own guardian monk if you stay at a monastery.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #65 on: April 08, 2013, 03:44:50 AM »

What are you talking about? They're the ones who chose to become porn stars. If anything, I'm contributing to the subjugation of men by making myself vulnerable to manipulation from an attractive woman.

And helping the business grow. Responsibility is not only for yourself, but also for others.
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« Reply #66 on: April 08, 2013, 06:48:37 AM »

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.

I know that, but at least I'd be receiving the spiritual guidance and harsh treatment I'd need to battle the urges. I don't want to go to a monastery because I think it'll be a fun vacation or something, but because I think it's the only treatment that can help me and the only lifestyle where I can really be spiritually productive.

What, so you're not getting spiritual guidance on this from your priest/confessor?  Huh

Yeah I am, but there's not really much he can do. All he does is tell me what I should do, but ultimately, it comes down on me to do it. It's not like at a monastery where I have people constantly looking out for me, reminding me, checking up on me and making sure I do the right thing. I'm pretty much on my own.

I understand your struggles, James. I have had similar experience with being told what to do, but not really how to do it. That is something which we all do need to work out for ourselves. Our confessors may know a lot about us, but they aren't mind-readers.

I think you should be aware, however, that it's all right to tell your spiritual father more about your life situation that may help him to find the right "remedy". I'm saying you should make excuses for your sins, but for instance, if you are addicted to pornography, maybe mention the kinds of situations that you find lead to the temptation to view pornography. That kind of self-examination could help you to avoid the sin in the future.

Your spiritual growth is a joint project between you, your spiritual father and God.

Here are some positive things I can point to in what I hear you say:

First, you recognize that you are in a bad spiritual situation, that you have spiritually harmful addictions that you need to overcome. This is MUCH better than being in a state of denial, trying to justify your addictions, making excuses and so on.

Second, you recognize that constant vigilance is required to overcome this.

Here are some cautionary remarks:

Don't think that you will solve the problem just by joining a monastery. When men and women decide to leave the world to become monastics, if they are successful they have typically ALREADY made individual lifestyle choices to abandon worldly pleasures and pursuits. They don't expect the monastery to do their spiritual growth for them.

That being said, I certainly encourage visiting monasteries. Think about how you feel when you are there. Do you feel spiritually uplifted, or relieved of burdens? Think about what it is you can do in your own life, in your own place, that can achieve the same tranquility.

Ultimately, as my spiritual father told me, you will overcome these addictions because you want to. It sounds like you're still at the stage where part of you wants to indulge these impulses, even though another part, your conscience, recognizes the harm. You need to get to the stage where you don't even want to indulge the impulses.
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« Reply #67 on: April 10, 2013, 05:22:41 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen.

I actually agree with this, sometimes I feel that the Church is really struggling (unnecessarily, in some cases) to keep up with the massive socioeconomic changes of the present day. I appreciate that the Christian message is supposed to be timeless, but from what I've observed, Orthodox outreach to contemporary youth is sorely lacking, at least in the West. Maybe the Orthodox have something to learn from the Catholics or even Evangelicals in this respect. Orthodox churches in America (with exceptions, obviously) seem to be largely self-contained fortresses protected by walls of ethnic identity that are difficult to penetrate even for those with self-initiative; measures to integrate outsiders are limited at best, much less relate to non-Orthodox young adults. There really has to be a concerted, sincere effort by the priest AND the parishioners for things to change in individual parishes.
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« Reply #68 on: April 10, 2013, 06:53:53 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen.

I actually agree with this, sometimes I feel that the Church is really struggling (unnecessarily, in some cases) to keep up with the massive socioeconomic changes of the present day. I appreciate that the Christian message is supposed to be timeless, but from what I've observed, Orthodox outreach to contemporary youth is sorely lacking, at least in the West. Maybe the Orthodox have something to learn from the Catholics or even Evangelicals in this respect. Orthodox churches in America (with exceptions, obviously) seem to be largely self-contained fortresses protected by walls of ethnic identity that are difficult to penetrate even for those with self-initiative; measures to integrate outsiders are limited at best, much less relate to non-Orthodox young adults. There really has to be a concerted, sincere effort by the priest AND the parishioners for things to change in individual parishes.

I don't know about that. I think the main problem is associated with adolescence, where the renewed development of the pre-frontal cortex starts at the onset of puberty and lasts until mid to late twenties. During this time, adolescents' executive functions are diminished, so that they need more supervision and not less. Yet, we start to wean them from parental control during this time, with an eye of producing independent adults by age 18. No wonder they mess up, particularly after they go off to college or reach this mythical adulthood. The kind of outreach they need is greater and not less parental control, to include the reintroduction of the in loco parentis doctrine for colleges.
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« Reply #69 on: April 10, 2013, 07:21:47 PM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen.

I actually agree with this, sometimes I feel that the Church is really struggling (unnecessarily, in some cases) to keep up with the massive socioeconomic changes of the present day. I appreciate that the Christian message is supposed to be timeless, but from what I've observed, Orthodox outreach to contemporary youth is sorely lacking, at least in the West. Maybe the Orthodox have something to learn from the Catholics or even Evangelicals in this respect. Orthodox churches in America (with exceptions, obviously) seem to be largely self-contained fortresses protected by walls of ethnic identity that are difficult to penetrate even for those with self-initiative; measures to integrate outsiders are limited at best, much less relate to non-Orthodox young adults. There really has to be a concerted, sincere effort by the priest AND the parishioners for things to change in individual parishes.

I don't know about that. I think the main problem is associated with adolescence, where the renewed development of the pre-frontal cortex starts at the onset of puberty and lasts until mid to late twenties. During this time, adolescents' executive functions are diminished, so that they need more supervision and not less. Yet, we start to wean them from parental control during this time, with an eye of producing independent adults by age 18. No wonder they mess up, particularly after they go off to college or reach this mythical adulthood. The kind of outreach they need is greater and not less parental control, to include the reintroduction of the in loco parentis doctrine for colleges.

What do you mean by "mess up"? I've made mistakes before and after leaving home for college, but I'm happy to have borne sole responsibility for those mistakes and learned from them. I'm also made many positive decisions, such as beginning my journey to Orthodoxy, which wouldn't have been possible under greater parental control. Besides, in the modern world, independence even from an early age is a necessity; hand-holding until young adults reach their mid-20s is not going to work. That's simply a cultural and economic reality. So no, I think in this case integration into a stable community (specifically, a parish) is much more important than intervention and supervision by parents or parent figures; and for that, said communities need to be welcoming and understanding, not withdrawn and dismissive.
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« Reply #70 on: April 10, 2013, 09:55:00 PM »

Guess what, James - you won't be allowed to "satisfy yourself" within a monastery, either.

I know that, but at least I'd be receiving the spiritual guidance and harsh treatment I'd need to battle the urges. I don't want to go to a monastery because I think it'll be a fun vacation or something, but because I think it's the only treatment that can help me and the only lifestyle where I can really be spiritually productive.

Harsh treatment will not stop anyone, it will only make them more perturbed, feel persecuted, and attempt to rationalize their desires. What is needed is more faith in the reality of God, which will lead to an abhorrence to do anything that offends him, in addition to his help. Anything can be done with God. He is a greater help that you have now than an imaginary harsh monastery is. Don't wait for some other set of conditions to come along to do what you can do now.

(Note: I read that again and I want to make clear, I am not saying your faith is lacking or anything like that, but the amount of faith we can have is infinite.. we can always have more)
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« Reply #71 on: April 11, 2013, 12:01:00 AM »

Some of you guys should read "porn destruction stories" and read about the lifelong addiction problem of some people and how it harmed their lives.  This stuff is way more dangerous than I thought...  I think its going to cause a real problem in our society.

I would suggest putting scriptures taped all over your monitor, so that if you try to indulge, you get reminded.  Pray when urged.

I really wish old school courtship was still around.  Marry at 17...
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« Reply #72 on: April 11, 2013, 12:06:08 AM »

Wouldn't God rather we look at porn and masturbate than really go out and fornicate and commit adultery? I mean, what gives? If He didn't want us to do it then He shouldn't have gave us the urges to do it all the time.

He wants us to get married and do it with our wives, if I may be so blunt.  That is why He gave us the urges, not so that we could drag out committing to another person until age 30.  In Ukraine, a woman who plans on marrying but is not married by age 21 is considered an old maid with something wrong with her.  I am not saying that this is a universal ideal (and what's good for the goose is what is good for the gander), but we biologically were meant to marry younger, yet we now have put up cultural obstructions to this.  Besides, we have very immature young adults as a whole.  As a seminary professor, I heard objections from some that "this seminarian is too young to be married."  Nonsense.  They were mature individuals (and we should have more mature young adults such as these young men) and were ripe for marriage and ordination.  Many years to them.    


But it's so hard now in American society to get married young. You are expected to go to high-school until you are 18 and thus are incapable of holding down a good job in most cases, and then society expects you to attend college for AT LEAST 4 years. At the very minimum, it's not practical to get married until you are like 22. What are we supposed to do? My parents married right when they turned 18, but that's mostly because they had me at fifteen.

I actually agree with this, sometimes I feel that the Church is really struggling (unnecessarily, in some cases) to keep up with the massive socioeconomic changes of the present day. I appreciate that the Christian message is supposed to be timeless, but from what I've observed, Orthodox outreach to contemporary youth is sorely lacking, at least in the West. Maybe the Orthodox have something to learn from the Catholics or even Evangelicals in this respect. Orthodox churches in America (with exceptions, obviously) seem to be largely self-contained fortresses protected by walls of ethnic identity that are difficult to penetrate even for those with self-initiative; measures to integrate outsiders are limited at best, much less relate to non-Orthodox young adults. There really has to be a concerted, sincere effort by the priest AND the parishioners for things to change in individual parishes.

I don't know about that. I think the main problem is associated with adolescence, where the renewed development of the pre-frontal cortex starts at the onset of puberty and lasts until mid to late twenties. During this time, adolescents' executive functions are diminished, so that they need more supervision and not less. Yet, we start to wean them from parental control during this time, with an eye of producing independent adults by age 18. No wonder they mess up, particularly after they go off to college or reach this mythical adulthood. The kind of outreach they need is greater and not less parental control, to include the reintroduction of the in loco parentis doctrine for colleges.

Brother Carl,

I absolutely agree with you.  I'm beginning to hear the horrendous struggle that many adolescent males are going through with pornography.  Coupled with "life destruction stories" of men who have had their families and lives ravished over porn (which addiction started in their teens).

I think every parent of teens (especially males which I will be in a few years) needs to drastically teach their sons about the sins of lust and how the evil ways of this world want to enslave them to a lifetime of porn use.

I greatly believe this will harm our society, teens will not know what "becoming one flesh" with a spouse is about, and only grow to know how to solve their own sinful lust.

**You young guys remember this - marriage AFTER a porn problem will NOT stop your porn problem.  I suggest you go read some porn destruction stories on various anti-porn sites.   Many men think they will stop yet never do.
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« Reply #73 on: April 11, 2013, 10:53:56 AM »

The internet has opened a constant streaming access to pornography that was only sparcely available in the past through  adult bookstores. Its access to minors is pretty open if parents have not carefully locked down their access to "family sites" and eventhen thepornography industry has been able to filter itself so that even some early levels of pronography can be accessed by young children not aware of what they are doing. This  immediate availablity has hurt the porn industry in sales of vidoes and DVDs but has opened wide up the accessibility into communities through the internet sales of sex fantasy for pay websites and free porn shorts websites even to communities that previously limited adult bookstores or closed them out.

As for the Orthodox Christian perhaps the best solution is to flee before them and just not open them up. passion and uncontrolled passions are one of our most dangerous challenges to the holy life. Thanks be to God that he has mercy and allows us confession and counseling of holy fathers to help us rid ourselves of these passions.

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« Reply #74 on: April 11, 2013, 03:08:15 PM »

Its access to minors is pretty open if parents have not carefully locked down their access to "family sites" and eventhen thepornography industry has been able to filter itself so that even some early levels of pronography can be accessed by young children not aware of what they are doing.

Here is the sad reality; no internet filter is going to work. If someone wants porn, then they WILL get porn and find a way around it. There is ALWAYS a way to cripple the filter, get around it and get your porn fix. Ultimately, the root of the problem needs to be solved. And that means that I have to continue my struggle  Cry
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« Reply #75 on: April 12, 2013, 04:57:33 AM »

My sympathy goes out to you, James: I think in this dire age all men are in the same boat when it comes to controlling certain base urges.

My humble advice to you would be first of all to stop viewing smut, even if it means continuing to indulge in self-pleasure (at least for some time). The images you expose yourself through porn will corrupt your "image sphere", filling you with evil logismoi, which in turn will stir lust in you. Limit your exposure to such filth, and you'll see that gradually you'll find it easier to stop masturbating as well.

May God and his most pure Mother help you.
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« Reply #76 on: April 12, 2013, 11:26:55 AM »

Let's just say I scale back during fasts, plus I've been tied up with the blog and another big writing project on, surprise!, the Passions.  But, thank you for the kind words.

The following blog deals with the problem of addictions including porn:

http://orthodoxyandrecovery.blogspot.com

The owner of the blog also happens to be one of the more insightful posters on this forum. I don't think he posts during fasts, though.
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« Reply #77 on: April 12, 2013, 11:41:57 AM »

As to the OP, here are a few thoughts:

1) Unless you are really, really sick, you are not going to watch porn or masturbate in public.  When the urge comes, then run (i.e. "Run, Forrest, run!"... hear those words and flee from temptation)!  Get out and go for a walk.  It won't happen in the street (if it does, then you need a different kind of help).

2) This includes where you put your computer.  Put it in a place where others can easily see what you are doing.  I've known one case where an extra monitor cable was run into the living room (no sound).  This really does help, because porn requires secrecy.

3) Masturbation and porn are more about loneliness, and I'm not talking about simply getting married.  We feel wanted and valued in the sex act, and our bodies give us that sensation of companionship and 'needworthiness' in the act.  The more people get plugged into relationships where they are necessary and irreplaceable, the less the temptation creeps up on them.

4) The problem also has to do with how unnatural the 'wait time' is on modern marriage.  I've done ancestral research, and found most of my relatives from the 1850s back were married at 16, the height of male sexual drive.  I think we are reaching a tipping point where society is crumbling, and the whole concept of marriage will soon be totally debased, so I'm not sure what exactly we can do about this because offering your daughter up for marriage before age 30 nowadays looks crazy.  Then again, we are still calling college-age adults 'children' and keeping them on their parents taxes and medical insurance, while they are voting and having sex like adults.  Stupid.

I do not condemn someone for occasionally masturbating, so long as he/she is repentant.  Once you've been sexually active, it is hard to shut that drive down and live in the world without temptation and struggle.  I do not condone porn or reckless self-gratification of any kind.  So, if you occasionally get drunk or masturbate, then confession suffices so long as dependency or lack of concern does not develop.
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« Reply #78 on: April 15, 2013, 02:31:34 AM »

The easiest thing to do, of course, is put an icon of Christ next to your computer.

How will you watch porn then? The shame will become so terrible, what will you do? Your only option is either to not watch it, or to put the icon downward (as if God cannot already see...). Do this just as a reminder that God sees all and knows all. In the time of judgement, what will you say in defense of such acts?

Other ideas.

If you ever get aroused or something, try to pray. Even the simple Jesus prayer. Or just Kyrie Eleison. If you have trouble getting it away, try pinching yourself.

If you ever fail and do fully such sins, at least after realize what you have done and the waste of life you have done.
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« Reply #79 on: April 16, 2013, 12:42:57 PM »

It would be helpful if you were born with an OFF switch.

When Robots start getting old (over 40-50) years, their parts start to rust and break down due to improper maintenance.
They like to point to their success in overcoming this problem and pass judgement on the younger Robots (under 30) years,
who still possess working equipment.

Well maintained Robots (at any age) can outperform even a 17 year old humanoid, however.
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« Reply #80 on: April 16, 2013, 01:46:11 PM »

It would be helpful if you were born with an OFF switch.

When Robots start getting old (over 40-50) years, their parts start to rust and break down due to improper maintenance.
They like to point to their success in overcoming this problem and pass judgement on the younger Robots (under 30) years,
who still possess working equipment.

Well maintained Robots (at any age) can outperform even a 17 year old humanoid, however.

PotM! And on your first post.
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« Reply #81 on: April 16, 2013, 04:05:44 PM »

What my priest told me, I will with humbleness share:

- Try to gain selfcontrol and pick up your chotki (or just pray it on the fingers, the Jesusprayer).
- He also stressed the importance of getting occupied with other things when those attacks sets in

Very solid advice.  If you exhaust yourself in work, discipline, prayer every day, you will soon find you'll go weeks without even feeling an urge.  It's when you have free time that problems arise. 

Precisely Father.  Idle hands are the devil's tools. 

Best advice in this thread.  I also encourage meeting with ones priest to discuss such personal and intimate matters.  To the shock of some on this thread, they actually know a thing or two about this sort of stuff, even if they are older than 19.
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« Reply #82 on: April 16, 2013, 04:19:12 PM »

Our priest according to my Godmother had heard it all after his first month here as a priest and he has been here for 18 years.
And I am sure that there are other orthodox priests that can say the same thing.
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« Reply #83 on: April 16, 2013, 04:50:28 PM »

It would be helpful if you were born with an OFF switch.

When Robots start getting old (over 40-50) years, their parts start to rust and break down due to improper maintenance.
They like to point to their success in overcoming this problem and pass judgement on the younger Robots (under 30) years,
who still possess working equipment.

Well maintained Robots (at any age) can outperform even a 17 year old humanoid, however.

PotM! And on your first post.

Sigh. Sorry Thomas. Didn't realize this was Convert Issues.
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« Reply #84 on: April 22, 2013, 01:15:37 PM »

What my priest told me, I will with humbleness share:

- Try to gain selfcontrol and pick up your chotki (or just pray it on the fingers, the Jesusprayer).
- He also stressed the importance of getting occupied with other things when those attacks sets in

I agree with this. Self-control, prayer, and finding more profitable things to do is very helpful in overcoming this weakness. I, personally, have a long way to go with this, so I'm in the same boat as the OP. May God help us.

- Jade
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« Reply #85 on: April 30, 2013, 11:32:08 AM »

Its access to minors is pretty open if parents have not carefully locked down their access to "family sites" and eventhen thepornography industry has been able to filter itself so that even some early levels of pronography can be accessed by young children not aware of what they are doing.

Here is the sad reality; no internet filter is going to work. If someone wants porn, then they WILL get porn and find a way around it. There is ALWAYS a way to cripple the filter, get around it and get your porn fix. Ultimately, the root of the problem needs to be solved. And that means that I have to continue my struggle  Cry

I don't know if this has been suggested yet but check out a program called covenant eyes. It's software that will report ALL of your internet activity to an accountability partner. It doesn't block any sites, just reports every site you visit.

If it's not enough that Christ sees what you are doing, perhaps answering directly to another person seeing your activity will help you. The program also features a "panic" button that you can click on that will totally lock down your internet and only your accountability partner can unlock it for you.
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« Reply #86 on: April 30, 2013, 11:36:57 AM »

Its access to minors is pretty open if parents have not carefully locked down their access to "family sites" and eventhen thepornography industry has been able to filter itself so that even some early levels of pronography can be accessed by young children not aware of what they are doing.

Here is the sad reality; no internet filter is going to work. If someone wants porn, then they WILL get porn and find a way around it. There is ALWAYS a way to cripple the filter, get around it and get your porn fix. Ultimately, the root of the problem needs to be solved. And that means that I have to continue my struggle  Cry

I don't know if this has been suggested yet but check out a program called covenant eyes. It's software that will report ALL of your internet activity to an accountability partner. It doesn't block any sites, just reports every site you visit.

If it's not enough that Christ sees what you are doing, perhaps answering directly to another person seeing your activity will help you. The program also features a "panic" button that you can click on that will totally lock down your internet and only your accountability partner can unlock it for you.
that would certainly save the partner some time, especially on work days and such.
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« Reply #87 on: April 30, 2013, 11:51:46 AM »

Its access to minors is pretty open if parents have not carefully locked down their access to "family sites" and eventhen thepornography industry has been able to filter itself so that even some early levels of pronography can be accessed by young children not aware of what they are doing.

Here is the sad reality; no internet filter is going to work. If someone wants porn, then they WILL get porn and find a way around it. There is ALWAYS a way to cripple the filter, get around it and get your porn fix. Ultimately, the root of the problem needs to be solved. And that means that I have to continue my struggle  Cry

I don't know if this has been suggested yet but check out a program called covenant eyes. It's software that will report ALL of your internet activity to an accountability partner. It doesn't block any sites, just reports every site you visit.

If it's not enough that Christ sees what you are doing, perhaps answering directly to another person seeing your activity will help you. The program also features a "panic" button that you can click on that will totally lock down your internet and only your accountability partner can unlock it for you.
that would certainly save the partner some time, especially on work days and such.

I should say that the partner does not have to sort through all of the sites themselves. The report that the accountability partner gets has the sites listed along with a % probability that it was a porn site. The reports are compiled weekly and sent to the accountability partner. It doesn't take more than 5-10 minutes for the partner to check the report and see what happened in the past week.

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« Reply #88 on: April 30, 2013, 12:22:50 PM »

I like the K9 one so far. It barks at me if I'm on a site that could be questionable.
I wounder how the guy who started this thread is doing so far. I'm doing good right now. Grumpy though, lol.
I found an interesting video with Ted Talks about pornography and rewiring the brain. You can find it on YouTube. Good stuff.
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« Reply #89 on: April 30, 2013, 04:06:48 PM »

I think it would help if some of you who struggle with porn research it.

There are many accounts of young women who were fully exploited to be in the videos.  Often from broken homes, addicted to drugs, and under VERY heavy pressure to "go further" in the videos.  Several have come out and said "they felt raped afterwards".  There is an organization called "the pink cross", where the lady explains many of the horrors in porn.   The only exception may be the most famous... But most young women feel fully exploited.

Then the end user is exploited.  I believe James is exploited, along with other porn users.  They are given this "eye candy" of fantasy.  They do not know these women, they do not know their hearts.  They only are seen as meat for their fleshy desires.   They do not understand that these women have feelings, need love, nurturing, and care as any human being does.  The women are merely reduced to their body, and the spirit or emotions are not in consideration.

Then there is further destruction.  As the young men often masturbate to the pornography, it "programs" their mind as the dopamine is released through the process in their brains.  This is a "natural chemical dependency".   The porn will call them back time and time again as their brains seek the "release".   

ALSO and one of the MOST important factors is, it will "program" their brains for "unrealistic" expectations of what sex is.   A 17 year old who believes that women like many of the sex acts depicted in these movies & photos are in for an enormous let down.   There are MANY testimonies online where men think "they'll stop" their pornography addiction when they get married... They soon learn that sex is more than the lustful acts in the porn movies they have watched....

In marriage "making love" is entirely different as there is love & care for the other half of your "one flesh".   Since all humanity, emotion, and care has been "programmed" into the porn user's mind, the sex in marriage does not satisfy that which their brain is addicted to.  Thus they return to porn.  Often this leads to a destroyed physical relationship, hurts the marriage.....  Sometimes leads to divorce, etc.  You can read many porn destruction stories online.

People do not realize how dangerous this stuff is.

It literally swallows up people for life, and they are never able to get away from it.   

I'd suggest for everybody to just STOP if you are using porn.... Not just for the reasons above,

But because our Lord and savior told us not to commit adultery in our hearts, through looking at women lustfully.

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« Reply #90 on: April 30, 2013, 04:39:04 PM »

I think it would help if some of you who struggle with porn research it.

There are many accounts of young women who were fully exploited to be in the videos.  Often from broken homes, addicted to drugs, and under VERY heavy pressure to "go further" in the videos.  Several have come out and said "they felt raped afterwards".  There is an organization called "the pink cross", where the lady explains many of the horrors in porn.   The only exception may be the most famous... But most young women feel fully exploited.

Then the end user is exploited.  I believe James is exploited, along with other porn users.  They are given this "eye candy" of fantasy.  They do not know these women, they do not know their hearts.  They only are seen as meat for their fleshy desires.   They do not understand that these women have feelings, need love, nurturing, and care as any human being does.  The women are merely reduced to their body, and the spirit or emotions are not in consideration.

Then there is further destruction.  As the young men often masturbate to the pornography, it "programs" their mind as the dopamine is released through the process in their brains.  This is a "natural chemical dependency".   The porn will call them back time and time again as their brains seek the "release".   

ALSO and one of the MOST important factors is, it will "program" their brains for "unrealistic" expectations of what sex is.   A 17 year old who believes that women like many of the sex acts depicted in these movies & photos are in for an enormous let down.   There are MANY testimonies online where men think "they'll stop" their pornography addiction when they get married... They soon learn that sex is more than the lustful acts in the porn movies they have watched....

In marriage "making love" is entirely different as there is love & care for the other half of your "one flesh".   Since all humanity, emotion, and care has been "programmed" into the porn user's mind, the sex in marriage does not satisfy that which their brain is addicted to.  Thus they return to porn.  Often this leads to a destroyed physical relationship, hurts the marriage.....  Sometimes leads to divorce, etc.  You can read many porn destruction stories online.

People do not realize how dangerous this stuff is.

It literally swallows up people for life, and they are never able to get away from it.   

I'd suggest for everybody to just STOP if you are using porn.... Not just for the reasons above,

But because our Lord and savior told us not to commit adultery in our hearts, through looking at women lustfully.



POTM?
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« Reply #91 on: April 30, 2013, 07:59:41 PM »

Great posting. It made me think. I hope that it makes all of us thinking. It won`t happen to me you say?
It is like trying to pet a rattlesnake: boom! You are there and it is a "bad zone" to be in.

I also would like to suggest (I can only do so) that we offer it up to God, pray and try to back each other up.
Victims, "bitten once or twice" or so. To heal from this could be a life-battle, but it is better than not doing anything about it.
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« Reply #92 on: April 30, 2013, 09:29:19 PM »

If we consider that the women in those movies are somebody's child, sister, mother, cousin, and replace them with our sisters, mothers, cousins, and daughters - it is quick to understand how horrible this stuff is.

Imagine your daughter being treated like this, harmed by a man, multiple men, or women.
Imagine your sister being exploited, masturbated to, and degraded - all so that a she can get her next 'fix'.
Imagine your cousin, being humiliated, slapped, and called horrible names as she is violated.
Imagine a girl you knew growing up, harmed, crying, shamed, with a guilt she won't ever live down, as it is forever on the internet (until the return of Christ).

Imagine Jesus watching over your shoulder on his cross as you watch and lust for these things.

I'd be curious if people hide crosses, put away bibles, or if EO turns away icons, etc. while they engage in this stuff.

As Christ said to the adulterous woman "go now and sin no more", I think he offers people who engage in adultery in their heart a pretty forgiving offer.

Remember, God conquered death, but sinful lust brings the 2nd death.

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« Reply #93 on: May 15, 2013, 06:40:00 PM »

Here are some youtube links:
Every Young Man's Battle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-YFsS_HPydw
Somebody's daughter documentary: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfnpI1bC75g (Serbian)
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« Reply #94 on: May 20, 2013, 12:49:50 PM »

WARNING: the following is just my contribution to the conversation.  It is my own personal opinion, and not set in stone by any means.

I find it strange telling how little Biblical information there is on this very common activity (masturbation, not pornography).

So far the best we have is some obscure translation of the word malaka from one instance in the Bible.

It was said earlier that the OC doesn't grade sins, well maybe, but I see Biblical evidence that some sins are indeed seen as worse than others.

Jam 5:12         But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and [your] nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation.  

To James, this type of forswearing seems to take precedent over other sins.

Mat 7:4-5         Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam [is] in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

 I know this one is primarily about seeing the fault in yourself, but it is comparing a small sin (the mote) to the bigger sin (the beam).

I'm not saying that the practice of masturbation wasn't discouraged in the Church's early period.  However, we can't deny how different those times were.  I would find it very difficult to say to some horny 17 year old guy to "find a wife" instead of masturbating.  Which is worse, a marriage at 17 founded on the premise of gratifying one man's sexual needs, or him masturbating in moderation from time to time? 
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« Reply #95 on: May 20, 2013, 01:04:53 PM »

I can't tell someone else the best way to handle it, but I quit porn cold turkey and I don't think I could have done it any other way. Even so, it's been 4 + years since I looked at it and the distorting/ corrupting effects on my mentality are still present.
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« Reply #96 on: May 20, 2013, 02:14:48 PM »

There's a guy on Youtube who has made a lot of inspirational videos about curing porn addiction. Search under "cure the craving".
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« Reply #97 on: May 27, 2013, 09:39:00 PM »

Good job!

Evidence shows that long-term abstinence from it will heal you, but the earlier you start using porn the longer the effects seem to linger.


I can't tell someone else the best way to handle it, but I quit porn cold turkey and I don't think I could have done it any other way. Even so, it's been 4 + years since I looked at it and the distorting/ corrupting effects on my mentality are still present.
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« Reply #98 on: May 27, 2013, 11:50:33 PM »

Good job!

Evidence shows that long-term abstinence from it will heal you, but the earlier you start using porn the longer the effects seem to linger.


I can't tell someone else the best way to handle it, but I quit porn cold turkey and I don't think I could have done it any other way. Even so, it's been 4 + years since I looked at it and the distorting/ corrupting effects on my mentality are still present.

That seems to be the case with lots of addictions. You got to get those good habits in early.
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« Reply #99 on: May 28, 2013, 09:55:01 AM »

Well, that is not so simple.  This is not so much about habits as it is about the abuse of nature and the distortions to our humanity that occur when we engage in prolonged abuse.   

Recovery from these addictions entails returning to a natural state.  You may need to work on creating 'good habits,' but they are not really the treatment, but merely activity that can deter a relapse.  Many people can maintain 'good habits' for long periods while the addiction lies untreated, only to resurface once the habits are broken.  These episodes are usually called 'dry drunks,' where the addict is not using his addiction but the underlying causes are still there, most often absorbed in some other distracting activity.  This is why some addicts can have long periods of abstinence.


Good job!

Evidence shows that long-term abstinence from it will heal you, but the earlier you start using porn the longer the effects seem to linger.



I can't tell someone else the best way to handle it, but I quit porn cold turkey and I don't think I could have done it any other way. Even so, it's been 4 + years since I looked at it and the distorting/ corrupting effects on my mentality are still present.

That seems to be the case with lots of addictions. You got to get those good habits in early.
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« Reply #100 on: June 29, 2013, 12:00:09 AM »

The wolf's ravenous howl fades into a wimper as it starves to death. You must tear your sin out at the roots. This is where I have found success. The Apostle Paul instructs the Corinthians to "take every thought captive to obey Christ" (2Cor.10:5). He says in Ephesians 4:27 not to give the Devil a foothold. If you are in a wrestling match, you do not win by showing mercy to your opponent. If what you are doing isn't working you try a different maneuver. If you don't know any different ones, you practice and learn some. Once he is pinned you struggle with all your might to keep him pinned. Do not let up. 

Peter tells us in 1Peter 4, "Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God.

The writer in Hebrews 12 says, "Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons?
     'My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
        nor be weary when reproved by him.
      For the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
        and chastises every son whom he receives.”

I can go on and on with the Bible's teachings on fighting sin and temptation. It is practically on every page! It is a vast treasury filled with wisdom and practical advice for overcoming sin and living a life pleasing to God, just read it.

But I should not post this without saying one more thing. You need brothers to stand with you in the battle against sin. Someone who will hold you accountable and will call you out when you sin. This could be your priest/spiritual father, or even a brother in Christ who has already beaten it. You cannot fight or win anything alone. There are no heroes or super saints in the Kingdom of God (I'm not saying there are no saints who have reached perfection, but they all have traveled the same road that you are on now). My pastor uses the phalanx analogy a lot. It was an ancient military formation used by many of the great armies where the front line marched side by side, joining their shields together with their spears out ahead. They pretty much mowed down their enemy with ease.

Read the whole chapter of Galatians 5, it is really rich and tasty! Do not fight sin by trying to stop sinning. It's like trying not to think about pink elephants for the next 5 seconds after I just told you not to think about pink elephants. Fight sin by fighting to do the things that are right. Be eager to spend your free time in the presence of God through prayer, reading of His Word, and through serving one another in love. Feed and water this passion in you.
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« Reply #101 on: June 29, 2013, 01:03:56 PM »

The problem of porn is an issue of misplaced worship. When we turn to porn we are in effect saying that we don't believe God can ever make us truly happy. It isolates us socially and feeds us a lie about how women are and often makes relating to them awkward. We fall for Satan's lie that women are insatiable whores always ready to fulfill our every desire because we are worthy to be worshiped (over God). Satan promises us happiness if we worship him, but as you know, this worship never satisfies and we are imprisoned by the cycle of our lust. Then we feel guilty because we have desired the sin of Lucifer- to be in the place of God, so he (Satan) heaps misplaced shame and guilt on us to make us think our entire sexuality is sinful and dirty. Masturbation is just the selfish outcome of the idolatry that is already in our heart. Remember, God created us as we are and called it good. This is no justification for our sin, but let's strive to understand what exactly our sin is. God gave us the gift of physical attraction and the experience of pleasure in a relationship, but He meant it to be expressed within His boundaries of committed lifelong marriage. When we are single we have to recognize our desires- we would be a fool to pretend it doesn't exist- but keep that dog on a short leash. Which man do you respect more? The one who's dog is well heeled and obedient, or the one who allows his dog to manipulate and walk all over him?

Next time you see a beautiful woman praise God for His handiwork, but focus your desire to worship Him above all else rely on the truths in His Word to help you maintain pure thoughts.

Aside from making sure you have Biblical thinking towards your sins, the rules for breaking unwanted habits are the same across the board- whether you're trying to stop smoking, biting your nails, or masturbating. I have attached a helpful diagram on how to break unwanted habits.

.... As a side note-I have seen some using the sin of Onan to argue masturbation is wrong. I am not arguing for masturbation, but I don't believe the context here is about masturbation. In Jewish culture, if a man died without sons, his remaining brother was to take his wife and provide an heir for him. Onan spilled his seed because he knew that the child would not be his, but he wanted the praise of his family by "giving it the ol' college try". The point wasn't so much act of spilling his seed, but what that action represented- his selfishness. Read about it in Genesis 38.  

God bless.
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« Reply #102 on: July 06, 2013, 01:27:12 PM »

Have any of you dealt with a spouse has, for whatever reason, stopped being intimate with you? Because of this, have you become less able to view things you shouldn't or control fantasies?

Or I should say, does regular intimacy with your spouse actually curb over the top urges, or does it produce more?
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« Reply #103 on: July 07, 2013, 09:55:00 AM »

I have worked with a number of people who are in relationships where intimacy has ceased.  The person in question either engages in more self-abuse or ends up fornicating.  That's because they were not prepared, mentally or physically, for celibacy.

On the other hand, even regular relations do curb these temptations, though if a person has underlying mental or spiritual problems, then regular relations have little effect.

Think of eating: there are some people who will still 'snack' even though they are getting 'three squares' a day.  The snacking isn't about being hungry, but about something else.  Regular relations keep one from 'starving,' but it does not mean that one loses one's natural desires... nor do normal sexual relations cure abnormal cravings rooted in the passions.

So, it all depends on the context.


Have any of you dealt with a spouse has, for whatever reason, stopped being intimate with you? Because of this, have you become less able to view things you shouldn't or control fantasies?

Or I should say, does regular intimacy with your spouse actually curb over the top urges, or does it produce more?
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« Reply #104 on: July 08, 2013, 02:27:38 AM »

With respect to the OP,

This really is an issue of addiction. A person becomes addicted to their own biologically generated pleasure chemicals. Their brain is swimming in the stuff, and when levels begin to drop too low, one doesn't feel normal anymore, and the urge for another fix begins to grow again.

The problem is twofold, one, there's no escaping one's own body (while alive), and two the most problematic sex organ isn't the genitalia, but rather the brain.

So unless one has a iron will, or a handy miracle, one may have to supplement ones spiritual exercises with pragmatic ones.

1. Stop trying to win the "war" in one fell swoop. Accept that it may take a concerted effort over weeks if not months to end this problem. Also accept that it can be won even if progress day to day must be measured in inches not in miles.

2. Porn is a heart and brain problem. It is the easiest to stop since basically it feeds the sexual imagination. It is a heart problem because it objectifies the person being watched, makes a kind of sex toy of them. It adds to their sin and to your own.  It is best to cut porn off cold turkey….it's actively hurting others as well as yourself. But people can slip. One way to break a slip is to take a moment to humanize the person. Look in their eyes…are they happy, sad, bored, putting on a show, cold, calculating…and in that moment pray for them (Lord have mercy on Thy servant, or something of that nature.). A couple of prayers like that takes the steam out of the porn session enough to turn it off. But turning off the computer doesn't turn off your brain. There are lots of images still in your head feeding any sexual ideations you might have.  There's not a lot you can do about that, except to stop adding to them…and refusing them when your body/brain is screaming for a sex fix. It wants the chemicals…so give it the chemicals…but give them quick and don't indulge any sexual fantasies. Do what you "have" to do to feel normal, as quickly as possible, but cut off all sexual ideation from the act.  It's still a sin. Still something to confess and repent of…but at least it is not entangling others actively with that sin. It's a way of having mercy on those who put themselves in positions to be fantasized about.

3. After a week or two or three of ending sexual fantasizing while engaging in sexual stimulation, that will feel normal. From this point on, getting free of this addiction involves getting your brain and body to feel normal on less and less chemical stimulation until your body's own natural "cleansing" functions take over…a cycle which for most men is every four to six weeks, for young men it may be more frequent….but that's not the point.  So one begins by a careful pattern of stepped reductions over the course of several weeks. If one has to do it several times a day, then work it down to once a day. Then start whitling it down through out the week, so that there are "fast" days, first the Lord's Day, then one more, then one more, divided up throughout the week as is most helpful (day on, day off, day on, two days off, etc.) But the idea is to make each stage of stepping down last at least two or three weeks…till that pattern, that level of "stimulation" feels normal. Then step it down once more.  If you slip and can't get back on track, then go back to the level you last had success and repeat it and try again. Eventually once a week will be enough, then once every two weeks, then once a month…and somewhere between once a month and once every two months, natural processes will likely make the issue moot.

It will take prayer and vigilance to stay away from old habits, but the chemical dependency will be broken.  Then the issue will likely be the types of dreams that accompany natural release." These will diminish in time, and prayers to the Theotokos, committing the watch care of one's sleep to her really does help in that regard.

So…is this the best way? I don't know. It is still a sin, but as a habit, an addiction its a path of improvement, so there is that. Does it work equally well for all men of all ages? I don't know. For some it may take longer steps to get effect, others may succeed with less. If will is too week an accountability partner might help. But the essential principle, of treating this like an addiction to a drug and taking graduated steps back to a normal body chemistry equilibrium…weening from the drug, is sound when preceded by a determined laying aside both of pornography and engaging in sexual fantasy...The sex organ most in need of taming being the brain. You might want to discuss the use of such an approach with your priest, perhaps in concert with some spiritual discipline that helps build virtue and spiritual support from other side. What I do know is that this way does work for some who have tried it, and it takes about 9 months to a year to get consistently clear and maybe another year or two to get past an occasional slip. But once done…abstinence has become the habit not regular sexual stimulation.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2013, 02:54:07 AM by Seraphim98 » Logged
Matthew79
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« Reply #105 on: July 08, 2013, 12:11:02 PM »

I found this website a few years ago, www.lustfreeliving.org. It has been helpful to me personally. It branches off into a site for men and another for women. There is a DVD/workbook you can order for yourself, resources for leading small groups, as well as various articles and testimonial videos. The guy's name is Lowell Seashore and is a Christian, though he doesn't state what tradition. I doubt he is Orthodox.

He has written a response to one pastor's message that reflects the general Christian teaching about masturbation being a sin. His main premise is that we can and must separate lustful thoughts from masturbation and "ween yourself off" like Serphaim98 suggests. Lowell posts a paper, "My response to one pastor's "Reasons Why Masturbation is Not the Will of God."

The pastor said in one point, "It [masturbation] can become our master. Masturbation can become an addictive practice and have mastery over us so that we cannot quit. We try to quit but fail repeatedly. We find ourselves in bondage to this addictive behavior and it becomes our master (1 Corinthians 6:12)" Lowell replies, "Yes, this is one of the main issues with masturbation, the habitualness of our actions. This does make it a sin and that is why we need to get it under control. This does not mean that it is always sinful or 'not the will of God'."

His response paper can be found here: http://www.lustfreeliving.org/men/tools/lowells-postings/is-masturbation-a-sin-or-not
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« Reply #106 on: April 14, 2014, 10:32:59 AM »

WOW, I have a bitof a different outlook here I was having problems with mentation and depression among  other things and was found to have very low testosterone. so I was given replacement.  Along with again being able to function at work I found myself having to pull out of "storage" my skills to deal with my libido.  I found myself out of control as an old guy suddenly 16 again.  So, one I am old and two I do immediately know what you are struggling with.  Getting married is among the oldest advice, even St. Paul gives this advice.  Also, we have instincts that have what behavioral biologist refer to as triggers.  One of the strongest of the sexual triggers is a girl's butt, sso keep your eyes off her butt!  learn the triggers, avoid the triggers, one of keyes to changing who we are is practice,  what you practice you become.  If you practice being horny and fantasizing sex sex will lead you around as if it had a ring in your nose. The fathers say that to have something occur to you such as a kinking thought is not sinful but if in response you engage it  then you are a participant . say a prayer, tell yyour mind to shut-up , get back to the responsibilities at hand.  Sex is a subject that is difficult but metanoia is difficult, if you say you cannot you cannot,  you must decide what is the pearl of great price.  This morning I woke from an almost wet dream it was very difficult, and Holy Monday, I struggle too, but we cannot  give up the fight.
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« Reply #107 on: April 14, 2014, 12:22:03 PM »

When I say, "don't give up the fight" let me qualify that.  Yes, "fight the good fight.." But also I would quit fighting it.  At this point you are probably saying "what is this double talk?"   If one fights an addiction such as alcohol by being very focused on alcohol and how he intends on not drinking, he hasn't a chance.  Libido works the same way.  If you spend the day thinking about women, and your physiology, such as the sensitivity of your skin, or your glands, or about the triggers of your instincts or sexual acts, the demons have control of your thoughts, your already loosing the fight.  Although you may think you're fighting, you are already engaged in the sin. Our bodies will follow our imaginations. Our spiritual growth is in how we learn to live according to the will of God no matter what else is thrown at us.  This "what else" is instincts, emotions, abuse, pain, death.  When we abstain from sex or food or what ever, many of these things are not wrong.  There is nothing wrong about me going home and having sex with my wife.  But we are in spiritual training, the only way to get a good set of pecs, or a washboard stomach is consistent working out.  We develop our selves spiritually, through prayer and fasting, through setting one's face on doing something difficult and doing it. ( as well as abstaining from sin)   We do this by taking command of our thoughts.(and eyes) The Shema tells is to pray and have the presents of God in our consciousness constantly(remember what we practice we become)  In this way one also gets to know God as well as letting God get to know you. So, we "fight" these thing by disregarding them, by not giving them the time of day.  When your mind is drawn to some cute butt, or something that makes you angry, or to an Alfredo sauce in the middle of Lent, do not pass GO, do not collect $200..."LORD Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner"  Teach yourself; make it second nature to refocus immediately on God.  It is the spiritual equivalent to a trainer telling you to do another set of reps.  In fact,  that is what your priest is, a spiritual trainer, not your judge, but someone who knows the right form in doing these exercises and how to keep you safe.
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« Reply #108 on: April 14, 2014, 12:44:48 PM »

So you say, this exercise takes humongous spiritual strength, I cannot do this! (In the background, the angels are so excited that they are jumping up and down and hugging each other) " No one can do this without The help of the Holy Spirit"  so , you keep on trying, keep on praying, and keep on trying on, no matter how dark it gets.   Oh, never forget that the goal is to Love
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« Reply #109 on: April 14, 2014, 02:19:26 PM »

I can't tell someone else the best way to handle it, but I quit porn cold turkey and I don't think I could have done it any other way. Even so, it's been 4 + years since I looked at it and the distorting/ corrupting effects on my mentality are still present.

+1.

I think it gets a lot easier though, and I am not married. Being occupied with other things also helps.



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« Reply #110 on: April 14, 2014, 09:40:33 PM »

When I say, "don't give up the fight" let me qualify that.  Yes, "fight the good fight.." But also I would quit fighting it.  At this point you are probably saying "what is this double talk?"   If one fights an addiction such as alcohol by being very focused on alcohol and how he intends on not drinking, he hasn't a chance.  Libido works the same way. 

In other words, one who is losing is losing because he is fighting on the Devil's ground and on his terms. Take the fight to Holy ground on Holy terms, thereby taking control of the fight.
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« Reply #111 on: April 14, 2014, 11:19:35 PM »

you won't be able to stop on your own, you need help, I strongly suggest you begin praying the rosary, 15 decades a day
Please do not advocate Roman Catholic rituals on the Convert Issues board. Thank you.

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With all due respect, we pray the Rosary too. If the slap on the hand was a policy of non- Orthodox providing religious guidance, I understand. The Rosary is one part of my prayer rule approved by my priest and my bishop. But I'm sure we all agree that the best way to combat this issue in discussion is guidance from a father confessor.
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« Reply #112 on: April 14, 2014, 11:42:14 PM »

With all due respect, we pray the Rosary too.

You're not alone.  Wink

Quote
If the slap on the hand was a policy of non- Orthodox providing religious guidance, I understand.

Yes, most likely.
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