Author Topic: The Long Way Home  (Read 3893 times)

malando

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    Something deep should be here, but it isn't...
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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #25 on: January 01, 2020, 12:01:12 AM »
Wow, Wolfman, i must tip my proverbial hat to you. That was an inspired piece of writing. Respect.

If that's an example of what you are capable of when you're off porn, the effort is already worth it.

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #26 on: January 08, 2020, 06:15:18 PM »
Thank you very much malando! That's high praise and it's deeply appreciated.

I've been back now for a few days at my own place. Trying to get back to my routine. I changed up my room on the first day I got back. This took me a good part of the day. But just moving, switching surroundings, even if it is from my parent's place, just dampens my spirits for some reason.

On the phone yesterday with my old folks I got extremely bitter and annoyed. Our communication, particularly between my mother and I, has just grown so stale and limited over the years, and increasingly so for the past six-months. This isn't the place and time to discuss my issues with them, suffice to say that after the phone call yesterday my bitterness seemed to mutate into a hatred of sorts. Maybe not at them per say, but the kinds of things that represent them. I felt tired, both mentally and physically. Physically from moving furniture around and cleaning. Mentally from their nagging voices. But the hatred kept going throw me like something toxic trapped in my veins.

After showering, going for groceries, cooking myself some food, and I went to a meeting with the group I'm part of. The feeling of hatred slowly abated.  At this point I wasn't sure what was happening with that girl and this compounded with my other emotions to first, overwhelm me, then flush themselves out completely, leaving me empty. Hatred had passed, but in its stead was nothing.

I resolved to get on the coach and read a little. Thinking to myself: "What would I have otherwise done, if I wasn't besieged by these turbulent emotions? How would I go about my day?" This helped a little, but soon the converse thought appeared: "What would I want if I was feeling emotionally content? I would want to feel the highs and lows of life, no?"

The night ended early, as the heavy-mindedness alone just anchored me into inaction. Surprisingly, I managed to find sleep quickly after. When I woke to this morning, I couldn't get myself out of bed. The miasma of yesterday still clung on like a bad fever. This translated into a willing unwillingness. The warmth and softness of the bed along with snoozy deliriums. I think I slept for another three hours, with intermittent wakings up and feeling the same laziness and shame. Part of my mind was waiting for that special switch that goes on to initiate movement out of bed, but I lay there only envisioning it. I tried to envision my day, but it felt uninspiring. Eventually I got up, had breakfast and tried to remember the things I would normally do.

Writing, workout, a walk outdoors in the misty town, then more writing, dinner, writing, reading and now writing (this) - the habits well-formed tethered me back to a semblance of my energetic self. The idea of porn had hit me a few times, but ended briefly, as shooting stars. No, that just isn't part of my reality anymore. But I'm also not sure if I can tell its absence given the past days. I want to feel better and stable overall, but I need to be comprehensive and think that porn may not be the source of my deepest problems (though certainly, without question, something that made them a lot worse). With porn gone, maybe I'm experiencing life with my own, porn-sober eyes. (That iconic scene when Darth Vader asks Luke to take off his mask so he can see his son with his own eyes springs to mind.)

Maybe with porn becoming less of an issue, the other things in my life come clearer into view. Family being one.

I'd like to think that life isn't about resolving problems as it is about moving continually on to more interesting problems.

78 days PMO+S free!

jixu

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #27 on: January 08, 2020, 08:36:10 PM »
Your prior post (12/31/19) caught my attention with the Dante quote.  I have never read the entire Inferno but have a copy arriving shortly (Stanley Lombardo translation) and am eagerly awaiting its arrival.  I will likely read Purgatorio and Paradiso as well.  You stated that your writing had switched from the first person I to the collective We.  That is reminiscent of the Dante quote you referenced, as he states it is "our" journey but then goes to a few "I" lines. 

Interestingly, I listened last week to a lecture on Dante and the lecturer said, in the midst of his talk (and not necessarily talking about Dante per se i guess) the following: there are two types of people in this world; those who view life as a bunch of problems to be solved, and those who view life as a series of mysteries to be embraced.  His quote is arguably similar (at least kinda sorta) to the very last line of your most recent post.  My conclusion: you have Dante potential !!

In general, what mysticism and theological stuff have you been reading that you found instructive, both in the sense of the business at hand (fighting porn) and for life in general?

Keep going on your streak!
 




 

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #28 on: January 13, 2020, 05:18:39 PM »
Hi jixu, thanks for reading! That's interesting, I hadn't noticed that the "I" "we" switch was going on in the Dante quote as well. The relationship between those words is interesting: "I" signifying speaking on behalf of oneself, whereas "we" on behalf a more-than one collective, yet they both participate in the community of language which must always be a "we" - but when we make the step of thinking this "we" as a single group, have we not returned to the "I" again? Anyway, I digress.

I like that quote by the lecturer on Dante. Thank you for passing that on, and your all too kind words! I think we all have some kind "Dante potential" locked inside us, and porn is a wretched jailer and parasite of that potential.

A few months ago I had been reading Confessions by St. Augustine. I had read the entirety of this text 5-6 years ago, but when I reread it this time around I didn't find it as powerful (it is still powerful, and I have great respect of St. Augustine, both as an autobiographer and as a philosophical thinker)--it just didn't speak to me and the situation I was in. Over the holidays I picked up "Dynamics of Faith" by Paul Tilich and, while I had read a few chapters from that book before, it really sparked something within me reading it a second time. I read the whole thing (it's a fairly small and very accessibly written text) and found it sublime in its simplicity and powerful in its concept. Tilich sets out to "rehabilitate" the term faith (well, I wonder how many more terms today are in need of rehabilitation) by defining it, not as 'belief in something without evidence' but as 'the state of being ultimately concerned'. Really, it's such a simple idea yet striking. You can ask yourself (or your friends): what is your ultimate concern? The one concern all other so-called preliminary concerns are tied to. The one concern that motivates your daily actions or propels you towards your projects (or fails to motivate you). This, Tilich calls faith.

And you can be ultimately concerned about all sorts of things: cars, material wealth, status, getting the best sex, fighting for a cause, fighting for your nation, practicing a religion, etc. But there is always a criterion that comes with every ultimate concern, since to be ultimately concerned one is striving for exactly the ultimate. An ultimacy is involved that transcends any particular thing we might be ultimately concerned about, by the simple that that all things in the world are finite. This does not dampen being ultimately concerned, since its source is its own ultimacy, namely, its source is the infinite. So effectively any thing we could be ultimately concerned about can only ever be a symbol of the ultimate. The term symbol here is important because it signifies that the symbol participates in what it symbolizes (rather than merely pointing to it like a sign), but it does not exhaust it. And so the test within being ultimately concerned is how well that which you are ultimately concerned about is capable of symbolically reflecting the ultimate. In other words, how well can something finite participate in the infinite? So are cars (or pick any other material thing) a good ultimate concern, do cars manifest the infinite? Hardly. They're quite blatantly stuff. What about a nation? The nation is bigger than any of its single individuals, and it *seems* to transcend finitude. This is a better candidate, Tilich thinks, but it still falls prey to its own finitude by being something in the world. Worse yet, Tilich points to the atrocities that followed when a people set their nation above all else at _any cost_ (the 20th century was, sorrowfully, rife with such examples). What about religion? Better still. But then which religion, and, more importantly, why? I'll end with saying that Tilich's model of being ultimately concerned cuts across borders and can be applied to anything. In addition, Tilich claims that no human being is without an ultimate concern, and any challenge against faith, whether by history, science, politics or philosophy, cannot be a direct challenge on faith (understood as ultimate concern, NOT as "belief without evidence") -- only one faith can challenge another. So when history, art, science, politics or philosophy is being deployed against faith, there is a hidden ultimate concern in the former that is not being rendered explicit. Again, the test should always be immanent: whatever professes to challenge or negate faith--does it live up to its own criterion of ultimacy?

To just say a few more words. Tilich always writes that one does not "choose" one's ultimate concern, like the way one decides on a vacation or cereal in the grocery store, but that one finds oneself "grasped by one's ultimate concern" or "grasped by the infinite". This does not mean that freedom is out of the picture, or that it's all fate, providence, etc. Tilich wouldn't be writing a book so embedded in the existential quandary if he wasn't laying out how to discover and think one's ultimate concern and act accordingly. If whatever we are grasped by fails to live up to its criterion of ultimacy, it dawns on us that this was not the adequate "symbol" and that we must strive on to discover something that can. But this striving has no end because our inquiry has no end, and so we cannot reach a finality whereby our ultimate concern is at one with its object (mysticism is about as close as one gets, Tilich notes, but that is a transitory stage that negates the finite itself rather than bringing it higher--mystics, saints and gurus, however far and deep their minds travel must employ some language to orient themselves or to tell others about where and how they've gone), but this does not remove the constancy of being ultimately concerned. To put like Sartre: we're condemned to be free.

Okay--that was more that I initially intended, but once that ball got rolling there was no stopping it! It's a fascinating short text, and I recommend to everyone. I'm going to read more of his books. He's got another quasi-famous one titled "The Courage to be".Paul Tilich was a protestant theologian, so there is a definite bent towards religion and Christianity in his writing, but he is also critical towards the protestant history and diagnoses many issues with it. Notwithstanding, the book offers more an existential and philosophical model rather than something "religious," narrowly defined. If Tilich is right, we all have an ultimate concern, and maybe, since we're on this forum together, at some important stage quitting porn must have been the ultimate concern for us.

So yes jixu, I've found the idea of ultimate concern to be incredibly powerful in thinking about life in general and the part of porn. I think in a life that adequately reflects the ultimate concern has no, or only a very limited, space for porn (perhaps we should say that it has no space for the kind of high-speed endless novelty positively addictive porn, but then when we speak of porn, what else is there nowadays?).

Now to update the journal: the latter half of last week I regained my energy and spirits. I returned to writing and I partook in two actions with my environmental group over the weekend. Looking back at my previous post I noted that I was disparaging over the "lack of progress" and the "feeling that everything was the same" as if life was equally rubbish now as during the PMO-filled days. But then, I think this was the work of the black mood rather than any real sense, because, looking back at the journal there are tons of milestones! Life is subjectively and objectively better now than those times. For one, I'm not constantly guilt-tripping myself over using PMO when I know the damages it does--there is no PMO usage! The black moods will come and they will go. I think this time around it was readjusting to my own life again that disheveled me a bit.

So I had a wet dream this morning. Actually quite annoying. I'm meeting the girl I have texted with over the holidays tomorrow for dinner, and if the intimacy is there as it was when we last saw each other, it'll only intensify and boil over. But I'm worried that having had that wet dream it's depleted my drive or libido. I don't think it has, but the worry is still there. I want to be hungry for her, but after this morning's incident I've been feeling a radiant satisfaction, a pleasurable contentment, an "emptying fullness" so to speak. I have a small fear that I might not desire her when we meet and that things might end up not going well or it'll be awkward. I don't think so, but... Ah, we'll just see. I am looking forward to seeing her, though, in spite of it all, it'll just be a lovely time.

11 weeks, 6 days.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2020, 09:32:32 AM by Wolfman »

jixu

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #29 on: January 14, 2020, 07:09:23 AM »
A nice clear and concise distillation of Tillich-that was excellent.  Quite a jump from Augustine to Tillich I guess!  The concept of the ultimate concern is definitely applicable to this forum as well as any other important areas of our lives. It seems that the ultimate concern (to a Christian Theologian) would be Christ, or maybe something akin to Christ-likeness, but not sure how he sees that.   Maybe it more nearly resembles the Jungian Archetype; anyway, it isn't my field!

Best wishes as you journey on.  I think you are on to something when you were discussing meeting someone in the midst of doing hobbies, interests, or even the routine activities of daily living.  Keep going on your great quest-three months is awesome.

 

Georgos

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #30 on: January 20, 2020, 03:13:29 AM »
Wolfman, someone once told me computers and iphones (I don't have the latter) are actually psychotropic drugs. They're kind of artificial. I can't even read a page of a book at the moment. How do you manage to read? Also what do you do when you need entertaining, do you take time off? I often expect instant replies, and get frustrated with lack of entertainment, this is true in my love life as well, sometimes I bombard people I'm jealous of with emails in the hope that they will entertain me, it really is due to lack of self-worth, books are much better, what do you suggest?

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #31 on: January 20, 2020, 12:58:47 PM »
Wolfman, someone once told me computers and iphones (I don't have the latter) are actually psychotropic drugs. They're kind of artificial. I can't even read a page of a book at the moment. How do you manage to read? Also what do you do when you need entertaining, do you take time off? I often expect instant replies, and get frustrated with lack of entertainment, this is true in my love life as well, sometimes I bombard people I'm jealous of with emails in the hope that they will entertain me, it really is due to lack of self-worth, books are much better, what do you suggest?

Hi Georgos! Thanks for stopping by.

I personally don't think that computers or iphones/cellphones are in themselves drugs. They're tools. They can be incredibly useful or very harmful. All our tools are artificial, the glasses I have on my nose are artificial too, but is there an inherent problem with artificiality itself? However, some apps are actually maliciously designed, so as to capture our attention by any means possible (I watched this interview a month or so ago and found it very interesting: https://youtu.be/kc_Jq42Og7Q ). Youtube and social media in particular (and you can probably throw in app games or gambling games into this bin as well). I think a good approach to this is to ask yourself whether you actually need this or that particular app--maybe make like a quick pros and cons list. Check also how much you can customize your app/platform. For youtube, I tend to ignore the "home page" and just focus straight for my "subscriber" feed, where I have only channels that I like and find rewarding (mainly stuff like education-enterntainment, e.g. Kings and Generals, Extra Credits, Crash Course, Kurzgesagt, etc.). I'm increasingly disliking facebook, but so many of my friends from abroad are on it, so I'm sticking to it because I can very easily get in touch with them.

Regarding reading. So first off, I'm not so much worried about "getting reading done" as I'm interested in a particular story or a concept. The book is just the medium--though a very fine medium at that. So with that in mind, what you should be on the look out for is what kind of things grab your interest. What kind of stuff do you like? Novels, sci-fi, fantasy, pop-psychology, pop-science, graphic novels...? If you know already what you like, then you've got a base you can start from. If you don't, I recommend just going to a bookstore or library and start browsing, pretend you're on a treasure hunt. You can also maybe ask the people working there if they have suggestions. Take your time. Sit down with a book or two, read the first few pages, check how it feels. I remember when I, quite by accident, first read the first few pages of Dostoevsky's Notes from the Underground - it was electric and when I got home that day I bolted through that book. I think I was nineteen or twenty then (by the way, if you want something from Dostoevsky, I can recommend Poor Folk, which was his first novel. It's a letter-novel. Two people, man and woman, exchanging letters to each other. Alternatively, if you want something more modern, I read Chris Kraus' "I Love Dick" over the holidays (which is not at all graphic, and tells the story of the protagonist madly in love in someone else who doesn't seem to return it).

I have very little patience with books that don't almost immediately give me something--meaning or interest or some pull. There are just too many great books out there for you to waste your time with something mediocre or trite. If I have to push myself to read something, I only do that if I have it on good authority the book will pay off my time investment or I am doing it for work.

If you're struggling with concentrating on reading, even though you have found something that really interests you, then change up your environment. Go outside, go to the library, go to a cafe. Leave the phone and laptop at home. Put yourself in a situation where it's just you, the story, and the book.

Regarding entertainment. So I think we all need some serious time-off, even though I think that this can be easily overrated. Personally, I'd like to keep such time-off to an absolute minimum, however, I realize also the value of just letting go and doing something stupid, not so rewarding or plain goofy. The goofy aspect I think is something underrated.

So let me tell you that I grew up playing video games; I've got thousands of hours into them. I've also watched a lot of movies and series. But September 2019, following a personal cataclysmic event, I realized that life was going by me. I hit thirty last year and all my friends were getting careers or families and I was, for large part, just doing what I'd always been doing, going in loops (the worst of which was porn). I quit video games, and that was as easy as turning a switch (I did play some over the holidays with my bro and sis, and since then I may have indulged a few hours, but it's all nowhere near how things used to be like. Video games actually bore me a lot now, so I can never do more than 1 or 2 hours at a time). I've not watched any series since September (apart from when I was home with fam during holidays) and only very few select movies. Now, I do like good films and I think some can be meaningful, inspirational or just beautiful (same can be the case for video games, but to a far lesser degree), but I'm just much more interested these days on being active and developing myself rather than watching somebody else do it on a screen. 

So instead of all that time and energy spent in entertaining yourself, re-route that into a passion or several. To use a food analogy: cheap entertainment is like sweets, the rush is there quick and goes away fast, whereas if you consume dark bread with lots of seeds, it's not gonna give you those highs, but it's gonna sustain you for a long time and give you energy to do more worthwhile and challenging stuff. And if you haven't a passion, or if you feel like you got too few, go out there and try new stuff! Learn to play an instrument, go out and dance, join a trekking, climbing, bicycling or whatever club. There's really a lot of meaningful and amazing things we can do with each other and so much to explore on this wonderful planet--the phones and laptops give us the age-old illusion (of which the television was the early progenitor) that we "can get it all" by just sitting there and watching. No, we cannot!

It sounds to me like your frustration with lack of entertainment from people, and especially concerning love life and jealousy, may come from two things: 1) its an escape from the fact that you lack of meaningful activities (of which I just spoke about), and 2) its a lack of control regarding your own sexuality. I drastically stopped caring if people from the dating sites I was on would reply or not--if they're not putting time and care into it, or if they're simply not interested, then why should I? It's a stupid time sink, "gamefied" or made out to be like a video game. I actually unmatched a beautiful girl for being rude to me--the old me would never do that to a beautiful girl! But here we are, building self-respect and self-esteem. So I deleted my last dating app two weeks ago and I haven't been missing it particularly hard. Instead, I'm going back to old school, meeting people at parties or at shared activities. If there's mutual interest, then that's worth pursuing. But if there's no mutual interest, you're deceiving yourself if you can muscle yourself back into becoming an interest for them. These things are always meant to be light as a breeze and playful.

I don't think I can put it better regarding sexual self-mastery that Universal Man's youtube series on it, so I would refer you to that. If you've seen that already, then you may want to consider finding a coach (Universal Man's vanguard?) - it sounds to me it may be worth putting money into changing your habits and expectations if they're derailing you so much in life right now. But, if I don't want to do that, maybe talk to your friends or family about those particular habits.

Anyway, I'll stop now. I hope some of that was helpful! There were really many questions tangled in your post Georgos, and I've tried to go through them bit by bit.

PS: One last thing. Boredom. Let yourself be bored. If there's something you want to do, but you don't have energy or motivation to do it. Just do nothing. Sit, lay on the floor (don't look at the phone). Just let time pass. Boredom is like fertilizer for your brain. You'll notice that you start picking up on little things and find yourself having an easier time getting to task on things you previously had to fight hard just to entertain.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2020, 01:13:04 PM by Wolfman »

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #32 on: January 20, 2020, 03:15:32 PM »
TODAY MARKS 90 DAYS SINCE I STARTED THIS JOURNAL. 90 DAYS FREE OF PMO AND SEX. MY REBOOT HARD-MODE IS HEREBY COMPLETE!

[puts on Casiopea - Asayake *Live 1985* in the background]

I want to really thank this community. I don't want to imagine how enormously difficult it must be for someone to have an addiction, a problem of this magnitude, a cancer in their very soul, and have no one else and no where else to turn to for help. For me, this appeared like Leviathan, a giant monstrous beast that simply could not be dealt with or negotiated with, whose ferocity and strength far surpassed anything human beings could muster in a million years. Well, one thing was right, there's no negotiating with this. But one thing was wrong; it can be dealt with, but only by taking it absolutely seriously. Zero tolerance. Making it this impossible thing, this crystal clear black and white opposition--relentless good and evil--was among the first steps, if not the first, that I took when I found the will to go to this place and begin this journal.

I made a personal note to myself on that day, before I opened this journal, and I'll quote:

Quote
I've always blamed porn as something that's happened to me. But today, having lapsed into the urge for the second day in a row, I've come to realize that I'm an addict. I am addicted. I am an addict.

I cannot stop it. I cannot stop it. I can't stop it. I can't.

When first using it after 4-5 days break, it feels like a comfort. But on the second time, the day after (or even on the same day), I'm left feeling hollow.

Tears flow down my eyes as I contemplate joining the rebootnation forum and posting my journal.

I don't know if I ever admitted to myself that I was an addict or if I admitted to myself that I was utterly helpless, but I remember that day right after PMO how spiritually crushing it felt and the admission to myself that I'm addicted, that I'm addict and that I can't stop, just ran through me in utter acceptance of my situation. This giving in to the helplessness, this confession to myself, was like a prayer. And it must've been heard by someone, because when I hit that rock bottom, feeling the complete and utter failure of my life, I was grasped by resolve. A resolve as unconditional and adamant as the abyss I found myself in. A resolve to once and for all get rid of this menace.

Through this journal, through this community, that resolve has only grown stronger and more adaptable. It's grown like a tree into all the areas of my life and infused my activities with willpower and action, and those activities have in turn returned with purpose and meaning, forging a reciprocal, ever expanding, ever deepening, circle. This is only going to grow, but it'll grow if I can keep nourishing it, taking care of myself and others. The practical changes I made are working: I'm eater healthier (I've cut down a lot on meat and I'm considering going full vegetarian), I exercise, I read a lot, I go for walks, my courage for doing new things has never been so high (two weekends ago I went to two actions, doing things in public I had never done before), my mind has never been so consequent and focused and the body has never felt so energetic and sensitive, in fact, mind and body have never been in a better team!

Out of all the things and changes in the past three months, I think the most powerful for me must be the volunteering and activism I've embarked upon. This has been a gateway to engage in public matters, matters concerning us all as human beings; it's been a gateway to meet lots of very interesting people; and it's just fed my thinking and my worldview to such an extent that my world itself has grown multiple new dimensions! I expect new dimensions to be opened this year and in the future!

I've taken the opportunity to read through my journal and make note of some of the things that I think are especially telling. I've noted that failures are important, and that this whole process with quitting porn will be needing failures. I recall saying that mistakes are integral to a system's self-development. This is just so true I want to devote an entire essay to it (don't worry, I won't do it now). I also want to note how my attitude towards girls has changed, I'm seeing them, instinctually, more as persons than bodies. I rarely catch myself staring at a beautiful girl (although, I admit, it still sometimes happens). And I'm noticing a growing resilience and confidence with myself. Confidence to start a conversation with a stranger, be more outgoing and calling others on bs. I'm also noticing that porn is becoming less of an issue and that I'm not reading up on the literature anymore. I still do see some videos and read some things, but now I'm gripped by other issues, where I may be contributing to a more collective problems.

But this is just a milestone. I'm not letting my guard down and I intend to keep coming back to this forum and this journal. I still don't really know if my PIED is gone, and I don't know how my emotions are going to be if I do get into a relationship. But real work has been done and it's showing. (I'm awarding myself a little treat today by having some ice-cream with bananas and a mid-strength beer). Maybe the most difficult is yet to come, but I've never been this ready for it.

So, to turn to a technical issue: my balls really hurt. They hurt for two days after I parted with that girl just before I went home for the holidays in December, so I took it as a rather strong case of blue-balls. But intermittently the pain has been coming back. Today's it's been really bad, it's like the pain travels up to lower stomach. I was lying on the couch today thinking about that girl, maybe I fantasized a little, but damn, that it should feel this bad from just thinking? I did my exercise today and when I was doing reverse fly I was nearing my usual 15 reps, but then I decided to push myself, and as I did this, the pain went away. It came back shortly after, and went away again when I pushed myself at another exercise, and came back. I haven't taken any painkillers, but maybe I should consider that.

Anyway, going forwards. Porn definitely out of the picture--never going back to that. But, interestingly, I'm thinking I might as well give up MO. One of the insane lessons I've come to learn and realize is just how little we actually "need" to orgasm or have sex. We don't need it (OK--minus maybe the pain thing above). I'm finding life quite fulfilling without MO. So I'm thinking I might as well leave it out, my routine and habits don't require it, I don't particularly want it, so I can save all that intensity for when I'm actually with a woman. Maybe it'll be better, maybe it'll be worse. We'll see.

This community and the feedback I've received have meant so much. Thanks again to those who have replied on this journal and thanks to everybody who's reading. I hope you've found it helpful.

It's been about 90 days since I last PMO'd.

Georgos

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #33 on: January 21, 2020, 02:12:51 PM »
Hi Wolfman, there is a coach who messaged me on the forum, was he the one you were referring to, his name's Joseph, I couldn't work out whether he was charging money, has he contacted you as well, what do you think of him if he has? In my paranoia I thought he was a teacher of mysteries I know called Daniel Joseph, I asked him to confirm this and he never got back to me :(

Georgos

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #34 on: January 21, 2020, 02:40:57 PM »
I guess I'm just looking for entertainment again, do I actually need a coach; work as a paranoid-schizophrenic or rather someone with infosomatosis as a condition, and it is work, a struggle to think and act right under all circumstances, is hard to come by, so I often go out seeking when I'm bored. I think you're right, I need to be more comfortable with just being, but it's difficult when I start to get involved with people of great merit, I want to contribute more. I need to learn to only give when asked, and ask before I take, or take when asked and ask before I give, whichever is in keeping with the time, I'm not sure if that is the difference between Islam and Christianity, I believe I can sit comfortably with myself doing nothing for much of the time, perhaps I'm too eager to follow advice when given :(

Georgos

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #35 on: January 22, 2020, 04:24:00 AM »
So Wolfman, one of the games I like playing is hide and seek, I hide when I am scared I'll say the wrong thing, and seek when I want knowledge. It is not a very clever game, war is a bit like this except that it is a game of experience rather than truth. Hiding from experiences and seeking experiences is one way of communicating. Life is all about communication at the end of the day, exchange, trade, economics. Everything is information, energy filtered through perception, or at least that is one way of looking at it. I'm glad you've completed your 90 day hard-mode, I'm very proud of you. I used to the name of someone I know, two people in fact, perhaps I shouldn't as I wasn't asked, is it rude to reveal and uncover secrets; I have always been a researcher, but I like to play. I read a book which mentioned someone who learned to have sex in his dreams, his master through him out of the classroom, was it a lie; I kissed a girl in my dreams last night, she was trying to interview me in a glass lift, she wanted to coach me in interracial love, I told her that she was prejudiced and didn't know anything about it, she said I was an informant then, and we left it at that. I don't know much about "race", it is just politics, division, order, there is life everywhere. Why we attach certain significance to certain traits is beyond me, it is how we choose to master our world, everybody does it sometimes. I still don't know who I am, only that "I am", an ego and a God, a singularity surrounded by stars and dust, a source and its reflection, a time and space machine with a life of its own. I want to give when asked, but you haven't asked me for anything, I have infosomatosis, am I saying too much?

jixu

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #36 on: January 24, 2020, 08:03:50 AM »
Great job on your journey!  Enjoy the view:  "There we settled down to rest, facing the east, where we had begun our climb, for often it pleases us to see how far we've come."         Purg.IV.52-54.   

ShadeTrenicin

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #37 on: January 31, 2020, 08:13:52 AM »
Hi Wolfman, just checking in to see how you are doing after your 90 day streak. How's life, how are you and how are your blue balls???  :P

Let us know how it's going, we do really care about it
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Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #38 on: February 02, 2020, 08:35:08 AM »
Hey Georgos, I don't think you should take up offers coming to you (they may be scammers, etc), you should be the one looking for coaches. I really am no authority on this, but I have a good feeling about Universal Man's Vanguard thing. You might want to give that a shot.

Cheers jixu! And thanks so much for that quote! I'm glad you're reading Purgatorio (I am at about canto 29 on that one currently).

And thanks ShadeTrenicin for your post and care! After some days (notably when I spent time cuddling with a girl, more of which I'll get to below, the blue pain just evaporated and I haven't had it since).

This is so far my longest interval between posts, and I'm happy (and a bit sad) to report that it's due to lots of stuff happening in my life.

So things with the girl, which I was texting with over the holidays, picked up steam. This was extremely nice and I was amazed to discover we clicked so well on so many levels. We were able to just talk with each other or share many of the same interests and concerns. But most of all we inspired each other--we wrote letters, poetry, danced, drew and painted.

But there were issues. Without going into too much detail, she bringing stuff in between us that didn't have their source between us. So basically problems from other areas of her life. So she wanted us to remain friends, but I wrote to her that I can't do that. I can't just mechanically switch of my erotic desires for her. It would be a form of deceptive living. If I can't be true to myself, I can't be true to her, and then there is nothing real to be had. I put my foot down, as they say, and said we basically have to stop seeing each other.

On the day she wrote to me that, despite everything good that's been going on between us, she wanted to just be friends, I sunk into a malaise of anger, depression, sadness and incessant analyzing over what's happened. I wrote it out on a letter, and I wrote that I feel I've been treated unfairly, and I gave her that letter two days later. I don't think I've ever so clearly set a boundary like that with a girl ever. Guess I'm finally starting to have some self-respect. (Edit: so it's important to note, I will be seeing more of this girl through events, and I think it's really important to avoid resentment, so I've been very honest with her about how I feel about things and that maybe there may be a proper friendship for us in the future, but that time is not now. But besides, after all that's happened and didn't happen, I have absolutely no regrets. Maybe, in fact, a tinge of gratitude.)

Rather quite quickly, I have picked myself up from that day of all those quaking feelings. It sucks, it's a damn shame, but I'm feeling emotionally quite okay now. I stopped and took a gander at what was all the things I used to do before her, and these things have been kept up throughout. Most importantly, I did not think once to PMO or MO throughout the whole thing. I'll take the pain, and I'll take it raw.

I think quitting PMO has given me a whole lot of control of my emotional being. As sad, angry, and depressed as I was when this thing with her was over, it was nowhere near the level of helplessness I've faced before. Now, this may just be because we didn't know each other for very long--but I really do feel like there is some qualitative change here. For one thing, we didn't have sex and now I'm not missing having sex. That whole thing doesn't factor in as much, if it factors in at all. So yeah, this darn thing with NoFap and zero PMO is actually working. As the days go by, she is less and less a concern for me, already I've turned to look at my current, near-future and far-future projects as ones without her.

This, I think, is the genuine reward of sexual-self-mastery (quitting PMO and MO): you become more in tune with yourself and your own emotions, and act and move through life as a more unified human being. All the parts of your being are now co-operating freely instead of a top-down, white-knuckling hierarchy of the ego: now the intellect listens to the heart, the body gives you energy to your projects, and deep down you know that all pain and suffering, are not obstacles to your private happiness but conditions for your own story.

After all, we're all here writing a journal.

14 Weeks, 4 days.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2020, 01:45:12 PM by Wolfman »

ShadeTrenicin

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #39 on: February 03, 2020, 12:00:08 PM »
Well, it looks like you've gained a lot by quitting PMO. You obviously gained self control, insight and you grew on an emotional level. I think you can be really proud of yourself.

Regarding the girl. Sucks that it didn't work out, but if it's not the time it's not the time. The right one wjll come along.


You can be very proud of yourself Wolfman
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Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #40 on: February 08, 2020, 11:45:49 AM »
Cheers ShadeTrenicin! Thank for you saying that. And yes, I do feel proud of myself. Man, these past 4 months have been just so intense. Thanks man!

So a short update, as I'm strapped for time and I'll be going on a mostly work related trip the next week.

Things not working out with that girl has left me feeling very lonely. Mostly I can get a handle on myself, but other times I just have to lay down on the couch and do nothing--just sit there an reminisce and have the feelings wash over me. I've been thinking about joining one of the dating apps again (the more serious one), but if I do that, I'll do that in a few weeks time. I don't know how much of my emotions are driving my decision making right now, and if I do get back on those things, I want to do so without a desperate need. But we'll see, it may just be my feelings of loneliness talking more than anything else.

P has also been drifting over my mind recently, particularly in those lonely moments. It's kind of made a stronger comeback than anything for the past few months, and it goes to show just how deeply it set its roots. Strong as they may have come back, there's no way they've even scratched the defenses my soul, my psyche and my body have set up. The P thoughts fade and I get back to my projects, and once there, I have no yearning for that sort of thing. Overall, more and more time goes to being productive and actively working through stuff (whether it's work or personal). Been also walking, at least once a day, which helps a lot. And it helps to see spring slowly coming over the horizon.

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #41 on: February 28, 2020, 11:33:57 AM »
Long time no update. Times been very busy with work and I've been hanging out with a girl.

So things have been steady getting closer with this girl, but I'm not sure yet if the spark is really there anymore as we seem to drift apart, desire-wise. In any case, recently we had a night of intense cuddling and, while I felt pretty damn good with just that, part of me felt something was missing. So this morning, I mo'd (no porn, just thinking about the girl and our cuddling). 18 weeks and 2 days without intentional orgasm, so this is the longest I've ever gone without getting myself off before puberty. It didn't feel all that amazing, to be honest. What was nice about it was the feeling of pleasure conjoined with the thoughts of that girl; not the pleasure itself or the fact I was just by myself, these were rather negative. Overall, this just reinforces that there's no point to mo'ing.

P has, since my last post, been sort of flying over my mind time and again, but always at a distance. I'm not worried that my mo this morning is going to escalate, although there might be a chaser effect, so I should be on my guard.

On the good side, I do feel an erection coming on whenever me and this girl are kissing deeply or cuddling. No idea how sturdy it is, so to speak, but it feels like a nice boost to my confidence. Besides, not having actual sex hasn't really been bothering me, not in a oh-my-world-is-falling-apart or I'm-totally-missing-out kind of sense.

Still, orgasm does throw my emotions up in a ruckus a bit, but I'm accepting it, taking it as a part of life that thing's aren't always going to stable or controllable (nor, perhaps, should they). Anyway, 18 weeks and 2 days without p and pmo - that's the most important thing.

ShadeTrenicin

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #42 on: March 04, 2020, 03:30:31 AM »
Hey Wolfmann, good to still see you come here.

From what I read, overall you are doing well and you've found a really good foundation to protect yourself from PMO-ing. I think you are acing it and I hope that things with this girl will unfold themselves in a really positive way.

Good luck brother.
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Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #43 on: March 16, 2020, 01:08:26 PM »
There has been a two more intentional mo's. But no porn. They are related to rising sexual feelings with this girl. We still haven't had sex, only cuddled and kissed, but it's enough to leave me wanting more. It's also annoying me how slow she's taking it. It's weird, because if there was no "opportunity", so to speak, I don't think I would've minded that much. But now it's like it can happen, but it doesn't, and it annoys me. I can't tell whether she's taking it slow because that's how she wants it or if she's playing for time because she's already lost the desire, or because of other things. It's just so confusing and draining.

But more urgent is the fact that I feel this girl is not there for me as much as I want her to and need her to. I'm not holding this against her or what we have together. She's got a lot going on her own end, and for reasons I cannot go in here, I can't ask of her more. But having opened up more to somebody else, you kinda feel vulnerable--which is okay--but you want that vulnerability to be cared for. But now I'm feeling I'm opening myself up and I'm not getting back what I expect emotionally. Intellectually, I understand I can't expect more and, frankly, I don't want to. But there's a whole other side of me that wants things differently; want things to be real, intense and acted out beyond social rules and standards of this world.

Apart from that, been feeling real spiritual fatigue coming on. Every week now there are a couple of days where I just sink and collapse. It's like I'm a functional maniac of some sort; trying to keep a sinking ship together, but I can't figure out where the holes and breeches are. It all looks like it's airtight, but I'm steadily going under water and I don't know why. This stuff with the virus hasn't helped, as so much social stuff has been cancelled and particularly lots of stuff in the early summer. I feel like the whole world is entering into the black fatigue.

A few weeks ago I rejoined one of the dating sites. Since things between me and that girl were only going to be on a friendship basis, I figured I might as well "move on". But after a week, I deleted it. Recently I joined another one (something more serious), but if there are no real connections happening, then I'll delete that too. I tried playing some video games on the weekend (something I haven't done by myself in ages), but I felt wretched, felt like wasting my time, even though I was super tired from other physical and intellectual work, and I needed a break. But I just seem to have a hard time giving myself a break, a stupid superficial break. I want to have other interests in life, but the darn pandemic is giving me so many second thoughts about what to do. Funny, the old me would have reveled in an opportunity to just be home and play games all day--the current me finds this abhorrent and deeply unfortunate.

I don't know. I went out today. Sat myself down on a bench. It was sunny and it was warm, the feeling of fresh and warmer weather coming on. I think I was a couple of hours on that bench. Just relaxing, drifting, sitting up to read a little. Just enjoying the hot sun gracing my face. I'm feeling a bit better after that, the way you feel alleviated after a long good cry.

Thanks for your comment ShadeTrenicin! Hard to say whether things are going better, at least it's issues without P.

20 weeks, 6 days, without P and PMO.

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #44 on: April 08, 2020, 05:55:20 AM »
It's been a difficult couple of weeks. The isolation that comes with the pandemic has brought me back to a place in life I thought I had left behind. I really don't want to be alone anymore--I've lived that existence so much--but it's the thing to do now (I mean, basic solidarity with those more exposed to the virus). Everything's closed and no social events are on. You'd think I'd be an expect at being alone, but that's not how that thing works--it's not a skill but a privation. A slow-eating loss. But, there's been a few chats here and there online, and I have spent time with that girl, which has been very nice. But there's been some glum episodes.

I don't want to get into too much details, but suffice to say it involved alcohol and talking about some really dark stuff from my past among a few people at an otherwise chill and lighthearted evening together. I've reflected on why this happened, because I've never done something like that--ever. So it's like I lost control, but also, I didn't, since I would not have said and talked about those things unless part of me really needed to get those things out. Unfortunately, the way it came out was really bad and has put a serious strain on my connection with this girl.

Then a week later, I had really bad depression. I have my dark moods, but I think the isolation made it much, much worse. This day I spent with this girl and a few of her friends. But I couldn't engage with them. The depression literally covered everything, and I saw everything and everyone with suspicion and pride, thinking the worst. Eventually, I left my friends and went home, where I wrote about all that was going through me for five straight hours.

Things are getting better. I'm talking with that girl, she's very understanding and supportive, and we're mending our connection, but I worry it's irreparably changed for the worse.

The one bright spot in all of this is that P was never on my mind (nor was MO for that matter, or anything sexual). Not once did I think of going to it as a way of dealing with any of these issues. And while likely I'm more emotionally vulnerable now because I don't have the (false) comforts of P, I'm all the better for it because I can take it raw. I take it real, I confront it and take responsibility, however that may result. I was surprised to discover this in the aftermath of these events. Perhaps for the first time I'm learning to be with others, free from poison that is PMO.

So I think with P out of my life, I'm discovering things about my attitude and emotions that could previously not be expressed. Some of which have come out in a really bad way. But this has made me realize that there's real evil dwelling inside of me, and that to be good is perhaps not shoving these things out or just simply expelling them, but, to be good is to be with yourself in those wretched moments and let love take ownership and responsibility.

More concretely, I think I'll apologize to everyone involved at that night I was wasted, and just say it like it is. I do feel a lot of shame about all of this, a lot of shame of what happened, the sudden onset of depression, the dark stuff just coming out of me, and I feel shame about having to take action about something I didn't feel I fully controlled. But it's exactly when you take responsibility for when you didn't have full control, that maybe you take back more of that control by owning it as a part of you (because it is) and being honest about that.

A lot of stuff. I need to keep working on my actual work, but I feel a little fatigued from all this. Maybe it's best to just take it easy for a day or two. But then again, work might bring my mind elsewhere and give my thoughts on this some rest. Anyway, I hope you're all staying healthy, well and safe. In many respects, the pandemic doesn't really change the core problem with PMO, but does add more challenge with the lack of social events and isolation. But, perhaps it's a challenge that we would've had to face sooner or later anyway. Better sooner, eh?

24 weeks, 1 day.

ShadeTrenicin

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #45 on: April 12, 2020, 04:49:47 AM »
Hey Wolfman,


First of all, i hear you on the whole isolation thing! it's difficult.

Second, i think you nailed it by saying that withou P you are now learning to open and engage with other people. I recognize something in that as well.
I think it is only logical that whenever you get rid of something as poisonous as PMO, you have to adjust on a pysical but mostly an emotional level. Things are really difficult and when slowly desensitizing, you start opening up. This counts for both positive emotions as wel as the negative ones. And the negative ones were always drowned with PMO, so now that you've stopped that they surface.

Happy to read that P did not once come to your mind, it  shows real dedication and I commend you for it.

Regarding the girl and the ppl, apologizing is never wrong. I think it shows courage and the willingness to accept and learn from mistakes.

Be safe and healthy man!
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Love yourself; allow your emotions, understand your emotions and make love for yourself your number one priority

http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=17919.0

Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #46 on: April 24, 2020, 09:24:28 AM »
Thanks ShadeTrenicin, as always, I really appreciate your post and I think you're absolutely right! And things have really been emotional lately. I get more frequent depressive episodes, and they're getting more numbing every time. It's happened twice this week.

I've gotten back on dating apps for the past few weeks and started playing video games again. I'm wondering if these things are making me worse, because it feels I'm sliding back to my previous life, all that's missing now is P. Man, I've been going out for long walks everyday, been trying to work, to stay occupied, but I just get drained nonetheless. I want to do stuff, I want to write, to work on my projects, but then I don't.

P have been coming back on my mind most recently, and so has MO. But the only times I've ever MO'd since I started this journey was when I was recently visited by a girl, where we cuddled and I could still feel as if her body was around me. I haven't MO'd "cold", so to speak, like out of boredom. And I'm aware now that if I do it like that, it would just be a bandage--a really bad one. So I don't. I've abstained from that.

Had a really great chat exchange with a girl I met on a dating app when I first jumped back a few weeks ago. Like really long messages, kept apace for well over a week. But she's currently not in the same town (due to you know what) and it looks like things have just about petered out. Today she messaged that "things are hectic and that she'd postpone any communication until she gets back in town". Now, sure, she may actually earnestly want that, but I doubt it. I don't mind if she's lost interest though, but everything just sucks so bad right now. I just feel so lost.

Maybe I should quit the dating app and solo video gaming, but then what? It's like I'm facing the music already. I go out, I workout, I read, I cook food, still I'm just more emotionally volatile than before. I'm trying to think that I should just accept being bored or that the situation sucks, but I'm in my head so much it's driving me crazy.


ShadeTrenicin

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #47 on: April 24, 2020, 09:58:26 AM »
Hey man, im glad see you posting again and that you've come to the forum in this emotional heavy time in stead of PMO!

I don't have experience with dating apps but i can tell you from recent experience that solo gaming (like immersive rpg based games) can actually lead to withdrawal and addictive behaviour. For me it didn't lead to PMO, but i was completely mentally upset and displayed behavior that was exactly like when I PMO'd a lot. I can imagine that dating apps can also have a chasing/level up/addictive component. Meet the next girl, the rush of matching.. But I know to little about it to say if it can be a good or a bad thing, you can best decide that for yourself.

Regarding the girl, i can't say anything other than that sometimes it just works out like that. Maybe there was a great connection but there is something going on at her end, maybe in the end your interests didn't meet. You can never know for sure. And while that sucks you have the total power in the way that you can decide how you want to cope with that.

But with depressive episodes that must be extra challenging for you. I do see that you are doing great as in working out, cooking, reading. But I sort of 'sense' that in the absence of a significant other you are missing something else. I'm just guessing here and I have no idea how you actually feel. Is it direction that you are missing, emotional comfort, the ability to just be?

I have no idea if this is your cup of tea, but here i a video that has helped me tremendously with coping with negative feelings. This video is the first of two. It has helped me to look at my emotions, let them be and then process them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFzbAHgdPNw&t=1459s

It really sucks to see you struggling. So please feel free to come to this forum more and just post more. We're not professionals but all of us  sure are in the same situation and we understand. We just do! I hope to read more of you soon, please keep us updated

Good luck!







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Love yourself; allow your emotions, understand your emotions and make love for yourself your number one priority

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Wolfman

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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #48 on: April 24, 2020, 02:00:00 PM »
Cheers ShadeTrenicin. That's a very perceptive and thoughtful post, and it already helps a little just by reading. Thanks for taking the time, mate, I really appreciate it. I'll check out the video you posted!

Well, I think a lot of this is due to the virus. It just shut down all social events around me, and I had a lot of stuff planned. Instead, I'm left mostly with myself, the one thing I wanted to avoid, because I thought going out and doing stuff with people would be the thing to do. And it really was working.

I guess I just didn't plan for this. I still, or my emotional life, live under the expectations of what I had intended around this time. Maybe I just need to completely re-adjust once again. Well, maybe not completely, but take stock of the situation afresh, but now with the actual conditions: that I just won't be able to see many people and I have to plan events for myself to break out of a stultifying routine.

A significant other would help, and I notice that I just miss basic emotional comfort, but I also think being part of a community is also very important. Sadly, the latter is not forthcoming right now. Ah well, I'm just going to have to treat this as a new challenge for the PMO-free journey. While P is relatively far off my mind, if I don't care for my emotions and well-being, I'm basically eroding my barricades and defenses against the real virus--P.


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Re: The Long Way Home
« Reply #49 on: April 30, 2020, 02:09:10 PM »
Very true - quarantine because of the coronavirus is making recovery from PMO way harder. I am working from home now, have very limited options of going outside, and some financial stress was added on top of that (again). But if we can make it now, imagine how much easier it is going to be for us, once the life is back to normal. Just keep going.
If I were a general and wanted to make enemy's male population completely useless, I would just carpet-bomb them with porn.