Becoming free from
sex -- it can be done
Posted November 30, 2003
I would like to share a practical way to help any sincere person become free from sex desire. I have been developing and sharing, with great success, this method for over 17 years. All you have to do is really want to; the rest is easy. This method is full of grace as well as mental strengthening from any starting point.
There are four aspects of sexual bad habits that we can all do without; Personal (physical), mental (thinking about it), visual (looking at others, or at illicit material), and speaking about it (flirting). These habits have frightening implications to our devotional lives as well as our personal mental and physical health when we harbor them as an acceptable form of enjoyment. One who can rise above sexual desires will feel luster, confidence and inner bliss increasing.
A married person can also benefit from this process. As we know, Srila Prabhupada asked us, at minimum, to keep sex life chaste and within marriage. However, he taught the highest: for devotees to keep it completely sacred, only using married sex life for procreation. We must start the gradual progress towards this goal by keeping our mind, eyes, words and deeds within the grhastha asram. Once the four kinds of sex are strictly confined within marriage, one can regulate it over time to the point of abstinence except for procreation.
In coming out of any especially dark places in regard to the four types of sex, first of all one has to be transparent. If we are to become transparent via mediums of the guru parampara, we have to practice and learn transparency. It doesn't matter if one is a swami or an uninitiated beginner on the path of bhakti. To make progress, it is good to have what I call an 'accountability partner' -- any devotee to whom you feel you can reveal all of your thoughts about any shortcomings or aspirations. This person should preferably a senior devotee who seems to you the most comfortable person to talk to about embarrassing matters. With your accountability partner you share all these things, steadily through life, and sometimes discuss how you make marked progress.
By being thoroughly honest and getting this person's help and blessings, you can make a lot more rapid advancement towards Krishna's pleasure. The other option is to hide your problems (especially the most dirty ones) in the closet, hoping that one day, after years of chanting, you may (or may not) get purified of the unwanted desire. That way is more difficult because, in such a case, we go on pouring fuel on the fire of those secretly coveted desires as we hide them from others. It is very purifying to the soul to have an accountability partner.
There may be other things you wish to give up -- eating at karmi restaurants (that occasional pizza), watching television or movies (that do not tend toward enlightenment). There may be other small adjustments of personal choice -- giving up coffee or other intoxicants, not eating too late, reducing sugar intake, getting a certain amount of exercise daily, etc. Anything that your inspired intelligence says is good for devotional service is a potential target for this quitting process, outlined in more detail below. From my experience, however, it is good to keep things simple and start with the big root problem, the four kinds of sex (speaking, thinking, looking and doing).
Whether you are single, married, or in the 'twilight zone' (single but contemplating the possibility of marriage), this is a good technique. Being sexually agitated and acting on it in private is counterproductive to looking for a spiritual partner, because attracting a partner requires genuine confidence. One will have a lot more confidence if he or she is full of luster, experiencing inner bliss, and is free from the four types of sex.
A practical way to quit begins with choosing a calendar date around two months away. Find a holy day; it may be an appearance day of the Lord or a pure devotee -- any special day will do. Just look at the Vaisnava calender and see what 'jumps out.' That is your blessed and special day. Pin that month up so you can see it, and put a big 'X' on that day.
For example, we'll choose the wonderfully appropriate date: Wednesday, December 3, the advent of Bhagavad-gita and moksada ekadasi. So, from this point on, you say, over and over and over, this affirmation:"On Wednesday, December 3, the advent of the Gita, I am going to give up the four kinds of sex -- seeing, thinking, talking and doing."
This is the how an affirmation process works: As often as you think about it, say it. Equally as often, you must cry out for Krishna's mercy, so that you can receive His mercy to become free."I cannot do it by myself, Lord; please help me." This prayer must immediately follow your own affirmation as a jiva, like a small child beseeching his or her mother.
We all know the story about the sparrow determined to get her eggs back from the sea. Because Garuda Deva came to help take up the task, it was possible. This stage in the world and in our lives is special and precarious. We must proceed seriously; if we do the affirmation hundreds of times per day, we will find our true strength and determination. When that happens, gradually our atrophied intelligence gets a serious workout and is strengthened.
By praying for help with all your heart, Sri Krishna will also be happy to help -- both during the affirmation and as you approach the promised day. The roots of these weeds in the heart have been cut back, cut back, and cut back, but not removed. Now, it is time to cry out and beg Lord Sri Krishna to pull out the weeds.
This affirmation process builds up one's intelligence and works out the tension that normally would surround the struggle of quitting. Our goal is to bring our determination to such a strong culmination that it is one with the desire of the Lord. In the clearing stage and afterwards, Lord Sri Krishna will grace you with a shower of nectar. As you initially start the affirmation you may not feel the potency of the process, but about halfway through, the real you starts to feel it: "I am going to give up the four kinds of sex!" Then you know something is working. Keep praying, and also think of all the important reasons behind this endeavor. Become introspective whenever possible. The intelligence needs this, and will become increasingly fixed as time goes by.
On the day you wake up, Sri Krishna will be with you, turning your old conceptions of pleasure upside down, turning that idea of happiness in this world, inside out! You will experience the smiling face of the Lord and his merciful glance. You will be free forever.
For those who are older and single, yet still thinking about enjoying sex in this world, this process may clear your mind to encourage you to desire only a renounced (vanaprastha) station in life.
At first, when becoming free from these desires, maya's pull will seem almost nil. Then, as time goes by, one is 'dead below the belt,' but the eyes may seem to be pulled to that vision, idea, talk and (hardly ever) the thought of doing. Whenever the eyes are pulled towards that vision of sex, one should immediately pray, "O Krishna, please bless this soul with pure devotion for you." In this way, a constant change will be taking place. First your eyes want to enjoy, but then you offer to Krishna this thing which is not meant for your pleasure in any way. In this way, the mirror of the mind will be wiped with glass cleaner each time dust tries to settle. This is even a great practice to increase compassion. Such compassion, once increased, doesn't need a supplemental push to fend maya away. It just flows naturally.
That's it in a nutshell. Please pick a day and say the affirmation millions of times, and pray very hard for deliverance. Write down this date on many pieces of paper, taping them up wherever you frequent. We cannot say the affirmation enough, or minimize its great importance. This is a churning of the heart, bringing it to true reality. If the subconscious is not churned and this smoldering seed of sin is not laid bare to the Lord, we will covet it through more lives for a very long time.
For those who preach and desire truly to aid Guru and Gauranga in the sankirtan mission, the pain of lust is an obvious obstacle. Such persons will be most honest with themselves, no matter what dark hole they may be living in; it is especially for them that I share this. If you are 'kind of normal' and almost desire spiritual freedom after reading this, please take up the affirmation and prayer process anyway, and see what it does! There is nothing to lose. Something good will certainly come from all that praying and churning. I have experienced that it really does work for anyone who does the affirmation and praying with all their heart, and at all times. Those who have succeeded do realize that their lot in life is millions of times better, being more full of hope to reach Krishna's pleasure.
May Sri Krishna bless those who read this. Kali-yuga is progressing, Lord Sri Hari truly appreciates and blesses devotees who take up this process and who share this with other devotees, going an extra mile to make a difference. Please consider that there are many devotees who are stuck in a dark place with all the allurements 'one click away.'
Editor's Note: Garuda das, the author of this article, lives in Florida and
is not the same person as the Garuda das who accepted initiation from Srila