Desire and Aversion

General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
[N.B. This is the forum that was called ‘Exploring Buddhism’. The new name simply describes it better.]
Tirisilex
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Desire and Aversion

Post by Tirisilex » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:09 pm

Alright, I saw my Therapist today and we were discussing my views on sex.. I hate sex. I don't lust after anybody at all. I've cut all sex out of my life I don't even masturbate and I don't have any kind of sexual relationship. I don't watch porn at all I am completely free of sex. My Therapist today said is that really a good thing? Are you not averting now instead of desiring? Are you not pushing something away at an extreme? I didn't know how to answer that. Am I doing something bad by eliminating sex completely out of my life? Am I not finding my middle way? Am I preventing a mental poison only to fill up another?

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Tiago Simões
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Tiago Simões » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:20 pm

Tirisilex wrote:Alright, I saw my Therapist today and we were discussing my views on sex.. I hate sex. I don't lust after anybody at all. I've cut all sex out of my life I don't even masturbate and I don't have any kind of sexual relationship. I don't watch porn at all I am completely free of sex. My Therapist today said is that really a good thing? Are you not averting now instead of desiring? Are you not pushing something away at an extreme? I didn't know how to answer that. Am I doing something bad by eliminating sex completely out of my life? Am I not finding my middle way? Am I preventing a mental poison only to fill up another?
Whatever reason you have to not have sex, all dharma says, for a layperson, is to avoid misconduct, it says nothing about sex between consenting adults. If anything, teachers (tibetan buddhist mostly) might say a healthy sexual life is good.

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tomschwarz
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by tomschwarz » Tue Sep 19, 2017 7:22 am

Tirisilex wrote:Alright, I saw my Therapist today and we were discussing my views on sex.. I hate sex. I don't lust after anybody at all. I've cut all sex out of my life I don't even masturbate and I don't have any kind of sexual relationship. I don't watch porn at all I am completely free of sex. My Therapist today said is that really a good thing? Are you not averting now instead of desiring? Are you not pushing something away at an extreme? I didn't know how to answer that. Am I doing something bad by eliminating sex completely out of my life? Am I not finding my middle way? Am I preventing a mental poison only to fill up another?
Two things from my limited understanding, in the order that they arose in my mind dependently originating from you excellent post. My dear teacher Long Chen Rabjampa wrote, regarding your subject, that is a sexual impulse, do not cut down only one tree, level the whole forrest! I never forgot that one ))) so politically incorrect)) these days.....

The other point, "if you want to be high, be high, if you want to be low, be low, there is (are?) a million (one?) people to be, you know that there are".

So with my catharsis on the table (above), from me to you, NO QUESTION, AMAZING!!!! Why? Because we need to LOVE EACH OTHER! And what is the truest love? Caring for another, one-way traffic, listening to them, and measuring you actions in terms of their happiness. Done. Sex for this end? Possible, but very very rare and a different thing than normal sex altogether.

As His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet has said many times, if caring for others, compassion, empathetic joy, and so on dont work to make you happy, then resort to sex drugs and music )))))))))
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

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Vasana
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Vasana » Tue Sep 19, 2017 8:33 am

Tirisilex wrote:Am I doing something bad by eliminating sex completely out of my life? Am I not finding my middle way? Am I preventing a mental poison only to fill up another?
That's something only you'll be able to answer. Different people need different approaches and at different times in their lives. It can be really useful learning more about human biology and neurology here to get an idea of just how hardwired towards the reproductive impulse we are and how our physiological and mental 'make-up' is influenced by hormonal cues and all kinds of other psycho-physiological fluctuations. Essentially knowing the differences and the connections between what the body does of it's own accord and the mental-overlay we place on top of it can help ease some of the mental stress you might feel battling this, knowing that it's not all purely governed by reason and your mental HQ.

Then there's the concepts and implications of repression, suppression and sublimation and transmutation to look at. Then there's any potential fear, trauma, hang-ups & depression that could be influential factors. Some people really are asexual so there's that too consider if it may be relevant for you or not. Either way, don't put too much pressure on yourself to solve everything right away. It's really easy to get stuck looking at self, the world and samsara through the lens of pathology alone rather than as potentiality. The pathologizing lens sees only what's wrong, broken and suffering and the lens of potentiality reveals that nothing is fixed in place and that everything can change.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

shaunc
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by shaunc » Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:38 am

tiagolps wrote:
Tirisilex wrote:Alright, I saw my Therapist today and we were discussing my views on sex.. I hate sex. I don't lust after anybody at all. I've cut all sex out of my life I don't even masturbate and I don't have any kind of sexual relationship. I don't watch porn at all I am completely free of sex. My Therapist today said is that really a good thing? Are you not averting now instead of desiring? Are you not pushing something away at an extreme? I didn't know how to answer that. Am I doing something bad by eliminating sex completely out of my life? Am I not finding my middle way? Am I preventing a mental poison only to fill up another?
Whatever reason you have to not have sex, all dharma says, for a layperson, is to avoid misconduct, it says nothing about sex between consenting adults. If anything, teachers (tibetan buddhist mostly) might say a healthy sexual life is good.
Personally I'd agree with this. At the moment I'm currently watching a Netflix series called buddha and one thing that has struck me is that a lot of westerners practice their buddhism too seriously. If the series I am watching is relatively factual the buddha didn't expect or ask his lay followers to adhere to the same rules as his ordained sangha.
Good luck and best wishes.
Namu Amida Butsu.
Shaun.

muni
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by muni » Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:11 am

Body is not asking sex? Leave it.

As the realm called human is the one of desire, this desire would be great if used to understand the working of mind to break out of its' illusive shell. The idea of what we are is having desire and aversion for something. And that idea its' basis is mostly to take care of itself, to protect and to please itself.

For being freed from desire/attachment and being freed from falling in the other trap as having aversion, Buddha showed us to look within own mind, to discover how aversion/attachment is/can be, and so to be able to be open for freedom of confusion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3l7fgvrEKM

:smile:
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

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Rick
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Rick » Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:19 pm

Tirisilex wrote:I hate sex.
Hmm ... this sounds like aversion to me.

You didn't say "I have no interest in sex" rather "I hate sex." Hate is a very intense ego/self-driven emotion.

Perhaps there is something off-kilter with your attitude toward sex? Ego-centered fear or anger or emotional pain? Might be worth an inner look.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

Tirisilex
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Tirisilex » Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:49 pm

Well I was molested as a child.. I can remember past lives that have tragic ends because of sex. For example, I was a Down syndrome male named Frederick and his father encouraged him to have sex with the farm animals.. He even molested Frederick at times taking advantage of his "intelligence" and one day his Dad brought him to civilization for the first time and Frederick molested 2 children in Public because he thought it was a normal thing to do because of his Dad. He was caught and the law Hung him to death. I can clearly hear him crying and saying "I didn't know it was wrong!" Its an aweful life with a tragic traumatic end and it has influenced my life. There is another but I'm not gonna relay it unless someone wants to know.

So yes I do Hate sex.. I should probably not Hate it I don't know how I should handle it.

muni
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by muni » Wed Sep 20, 2017 10:16 am

Dear,

Whether this is helpful or not, please check it out for you.

The child in memory is now an emotion.
Tell that child it doesn't have to be afraid anymore, put your arms around the poor child-emotion and say: it is okay, I am here for you. It was like a nightmare, now all is okay, all is fine.
So you connect with the emotion, compassionately, and then not more thinking. No thinking which breaks the connection. Silent attention-emotion.

You are not alone, many have a kind of fear or strong aversion by stored memory, some very simple other more complex or very much complex. And many even do not recognize for inquiry.

Then Tsoknyi Rinpoche:
phpBB [video]
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

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tomschwarz
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by tomschwarz » Wed Sep 20, 2017 4:03 pm

)) about video muni, thank you. Instead of in the west we need "emotional development", i would say that we, just like in India, tibet, nepal, Bhutan, etc... all need ethical development, meditation and wisdom. Generally speaking, other than warm heart, and goodness/caring, in Buddhism we are not interested in developing emotions. The English word emotions typically refers to:
Sadness
Happiness
Anger
Repentance
Longing
Excited
Thrilled
Quiet
Lost
Found
And so on. While we are very much interested in lasting and stable happiness, we believe it comes, immeasurably, from 4 things which are not so much emotions as interactions: empathetic joy, unconditional love, compassion and equinimity.
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

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Adamantine
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Adamantine » Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:39 pm

Tirisilex wrote:Well I was molested as a child.. I can remember past lives that have tragic ends because of sex. For example, I was a Down syndrome male named Frederick and his father encouraged him to have sex with the farm animals.. He even molested Frederick at times taking advantage of his "intelligence" and one day his Dad brought him to civilization for the first time and Frederick molested 2 children in Public because he thought it was a normal thing to do because of his Dad. He was caught and the law Hung him to death. I can clearly hear him crying and saying "I didn't know it was wrong!" Its an aweful life with a tragic traumatic end and it has influenced my life. There is another but I'm not gonna relay it unless someone wants to know.

So yes I do Hate sex.. I should probably not Hate it I don't know how I should handle it.

Since vivid past life memories are extremely rare even for highly
accomplished tulkus, I just wanted to ask: did you have these memories when you were a young child and they stayed with you? (past life memory is more common among young children)
Did they arise naturally later in life as a result of meditation practice? Or were they accessed through hypnosis or another technique?
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha

Tirisilex
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Tirisilex » Wed Sep 20, 2017 11:58 pm

Adamantine wrote:
Tirisilex wrote:Well I was molested as a child.. I can remember past lives that have tragic ends because of sex. For example, I was a Down syndrome male named Frederick and his father encouraged him to have sex with the farm animals.. He even molested Frederick at times taking advantage of his "intelligence" and one day his Dad brought him to civilization for the first time and Frederick molested 2 children in Public because he thought it was a normal thing to do because of his Dad. He was caught and the law Hung him to death. I can clearly hear him crying and saying "I didn't know it was wrong!" Its an aweful life with a tragic traumatic end and it has influenced my life. There is another but I'm not gonna relay it unless someone wants to know.

So yes I do Hate sex.. I should probably not Hate it I don't know how I should handle it.

Since vivid past life memories are extremely rare even for highly
accomplished tulkus, I just wanted to ask: did you have these memories when you were a young child and they stayed with you? (past life memory is more common among young children)
Did they arise naturally later in life as a result of meditation practice? Or were they accessed through hypnosis or another technique?
Yes I've known about them since I was very young like kindergarten range.. Then I wanted to remember more and was hypnotized to remember more of them.

shaunc
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by shaunc » Thu Sep 21, 2017 2:54 am

I don't know if this will help you at all or not, but as child, teenager and young adult I had anything but a normal and carefree life. I never found any peace until I could embrace, accept and then let go of my past, this also included forgiving people that probably didn't deserve any forgiveness from me.
Good luck and best wishes.
Namu Amida Butsu.
Shaun.

muni
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by muni » Thu Sep 21, 2017 8:36 am

These look great advices.
Tom: 4 things which are not so much emotions as interactions: empathetic joy, unconditional love, compassion and equinimity.
As far as taught, these are opening the illusive and so never existed door of self-centeredness’ world.
Shaun: this also included forgiving people that probably didn't deserve any forgiveness from me.
This is really freeing oneself from such suffering, freeing from grasping or holding on. probably it is asking courage instead of to keep hatred burning the opportunity for freedom.

I remember saying like this: the other ( object of hatred) is not aware at all of your hatred feelings, but it is deluding yourself. Buddha said same about anger.


Letting go all and all "holding on". Peace.
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

Tirisilex
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Tirisilex » Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:10 pm

I have forgiven the person who did this to me. I forgave him a long time ago.. It's just now I despise sex I find it completely unappealing.. So what do I do about that? I am totally and completely Averting any kind of sexual thought or desire to the point that I just dont feel it at all.. The thought of it makes me uncomfortable.

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Vasana
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Vasana » Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:32 pm

Tirisilex wrote:I have forgiven the person who did this to me. I forgave him a long time ago...
It's good that you forgave them. Only suffering people tend to willingly make others suffer and even they still continue to suffer change, illness, aging and death.
Tirisilex wrote:It's just now I despise sex I find it completely unappealing.. So what do I do about that? I am totally and completely Averting any kind of sexual thought or desire to the point that I just dont feel it at all.. The thought of it makes me uncomfortable.
Do you even feel the need to do anything about it? Does it adversely effect your life? Is romantic intimacy still possible /desirable for you without sexual intimacy? Rather than fighting against it or trying to do anything about it, it may be easier to just accept that given your circumstances, you may feel this way for a while and that if at any point you ever do decide to delve deeper in to it, there are actions you can take.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Adamantine » Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:51 pm

Tirisilex wrote:I have forgiven the person who did this to me. I forgave him a long time ago.. It's just now I despise sex I find it completely unappealing.. So what do I do about that? I am totally and completely Averting any kind of sexual thought or desire to the point that I just dont feel it at all.. The thought of it makes me uncomfortable.
Even if you've conceptually and/or emotionally forgiven people, this does not mean there is no longer trauma trapped in your body/mind that could be in part deeply conditioning you to feel aversion to sex. Since you've already pursued hypnosis for past life recollection I'd advise finding a qualified clinical hypnotist to help work through the trauma.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha

Tirisilex
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Tirisilex » Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:00 pm

I have identified myself as Asexual Heteroromantic.. So I'm still open to romantic relationships. I have met a couple of girls that are Asexual as well. So It doesn't really affect my life negatively. It's just my therapist thinks my Asexuality is a contradiction of my beliefs and I really don't see how. I did agree with him that it is Aversion which is why I posted this post to begin with. But I mean.. Monks will meditate on a female as a gross body full of blood and guts just so they can avert their sexual desires right? So why is my Asexuality so bad? I need to talk to my therapist again and find out why he thinks I'm contradicting myself.

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jkarlins
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by jkarlins » Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:07 pm

Really tough question. I wish you the best on this one.

Whenever I see sex questions here I tend to wonder about relationships, because that's often where sex happens. That's my thought, to see about working on that angle.

Jake

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Vasana
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Re: Desire and Aversion

Post by Vasana » Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:22 pm

Tirisilex wrote:I have identified myself as Asexual Heteroromantic.. So I'm still open to romantic relationships. I have met a couple of girls that are Asexual as well. So It doesn't really affect my life negatively. It's just my therapist thinks my Asexuality is a contradiction of my beliefs and I really don't see how. I did agree with him that it is Aversion which is why I posted this post to begin with. But I mean.. Monks will meditate on a female as a gross body full of blood and guts just so they can avert their sexual desires right? So why is my Asexuality so bad? I need to talk to my therapist again and find out why he thinks I'm contradicting myself.
If it doesn't effect your life negatively then I can't see a real problem but then it's very easy for us to not see any of our inner psychological struggles for a long time due to our ignorance and any coping-mechanisms we've developed to shield ourselves from pain. Perhaps your therapist was trying to distinguish between 'naturally occurring' asexuality or asexuality occurring as aversion due to previous traumas? Like Adamantine said,sometimes trauma can be embedded deep within the pyshce and body it's self. Sometimes the body takes much longer to release trauma response patterns than the mind. There are some good books out there on this topic if you get interested - "The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma"being one of them.

It's also a bit different for Monks but then those techniques can be useful for some people who are suited to a path of renunciation. If you want to be celibate that's fine too. There's no rush in any of this so best of luck.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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