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Author Topic: Overcoming my porn problem in parts?  (Read 6449 times) Average Rating: 0
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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?
« Last Edit: April 30, 2013, 04:39:25 PM by Cyrillic » Logged

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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.
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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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Matthew79
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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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Mor Ephrem
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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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