Check out my first article for The Good Men Project!
“In fact, a 2011 British study found that men who view porn may crave intimacy and closeness more than nonusers do, suggesting that porn isn’t just an escape from connection but could also be part of the search for it.” — Excerpt from a Men’s Health article.
Is this a joke? Meth addicts crave the pleasure of meth more than non-users. The further you distance yourself from a thing, like intimate connection, the more you will crave it. If you seek that unintelligently, like with porn, you will crave more and enjoy less, much like any other drug.
Porn usage stems from the deepest desire to connect intimately. It just happens to be the most unintelligent way, because it dampens the ability to connect with a woman in real life. Instead of desire leading to reciprocity, meaningful connection, and bonding, in the case of porn, it connects a beautiful sexual desire to a lifeless screen. This is no connection at all. This has no meaning, and it detracts from a person’s ability to relate with real people in healthy ways.
Guys- If you want to have a lasting and meaningful connection with your wives, would you want to prepare for that by: A- practicing transient and empty connections with a screen? Or B- Sharpening your ability to relate with family, friends and your community?
Simply put, pornographic viewing is an unintelligent and ugly response to a supremely intelligent and beautiful natural desire. What would be more appealing for your future spouses- a man tucked away in a dark corner, zombied-out, refining his own narcissism and ability to objectify women? Or, a man who is moved by sexual desire to fill his life and all of his connections with meaning, creativity and purpose? A man who channels his sexual desire into his work and his own edification? The latter man is inspired by all beautiful women to respect and honor; he is preparing for the deep connection that we desire and require in marriage. All women deserve this type of man. It is a shame that “normal” male behavior has been inverted to destroy intimacy and degrade women. Women- do not allow this in your relationships. Men- Transcend this. You were born to cherish women, to protect them, to serve them, to honor them and to know them. You cannot appreciate what you do not know. You cannot know if you cannot connect.
Don’t try to let any ”research” convince you of what your heart knows is false. That is an uphill battle, and everyone loses. Women are to be respected, cherished and admired. They are here to share the adventure of life with abundantly and adventurously. There is no adventure in pornography- that fleeting pleasure is all too known, from the road to it, the passing pleasure, and the emptiness after.
To commit to a woman for life as a married couple is the adventure of a lifetime; each day unknown, each child unknown, and each solution to the many challenges of life altogether unknown. The unknown and the mystery is the richness of life. It is what makes life novel and worth living. It is what makes sex better each time for truly committed partners even into the golden years (that is a real phenomenon- look it up).
But you must be prepared to face it courageously and intelligently, otherwise, you will settle for a trite series of faded pleasure and regret.. You must plan for this adventure, or you will end up staying home, masturbating to an empty screen and severing your connection with life itself.
Thinking Is Our Nature
Our brains are not a luxury, but they are essential to our existence as human beings.
Where it is perfectly natural for a dog or a cat or a bat or a frog to bump uglies without batting an eye, it is absolutely unnatural for us. When those other animals have sex without thinking, their lives go on perfectly and there are no devastating affects. If there were, it would be wholly unfair because they simply lack the capacity to plan and prepare.
We, on the other hand, suffer extreme and ill consequences when we don’t use all of our intelligence to prepare for sexual relationships. If we didn’t suffer those consequences (broken families, heartache, loneliness, despondency, social upheaval, etc), we wouldn’t be human.
But, we are. We are human. You are human, so stop blaming relationship woes on love. We can do it like animals, but we must think and plan first, unlike the other animals. It’s not such a bad deal though, because when we do plan for our relationships, we discover purpose in life.
Our talents, our passions and greatest joys are unlocked in the preparation, and this is called chastity. Chastity is not celibacy or abstinence, because chastity is not defined by what you don’t do, whereas the other two are. The other two are boring, pointless, and nobody has time to talk about them.
Chastity, on the other hand, is about what you do. Chastity is about mastering your sexual desire so that you can experience lasting love, fulfillment and peace in relationships and life without compromise. When you have mastered sexual desire, there is no thought of ‘not’, like “not having sex”, because “not” isn’t the point. “Not” isn’t the adventure. The adventure lies in channeling your sexual desire creatively into all of your life, and not just waiting for sex. Pleasantly enough, chastity includes the best sex imaginable, but only after a true marriage of body mind and soul.
My sexual desire is channeled creatively through my work and my life. I help men and women prepare for each other in lasting marriage through the desire for my wife, and I am absolutely inspired. I’m sure she will be impressed! I count on that, in fact. Every time I see a beautiful woman, I see someone else’s husband, and I see an amazing opportunity to educate both sexes to prepare for the lasting fulfillment and joy that we were made to experience.
Our bodies thrive when we are happy. Our immunity is strong, and our minds are sharp when we are relaxed and happy. This is a testament to the fact that we were not born to live lives of occasional peaks in pleasure, brokenness and pain, but lives of lasting joy and peace. You can’t have that lasting joy and peace if you accept divorce and brokenness as your lot. But, that is what you will get for lack of a better plan. Solution: Plan better
I experience my wife in all of my activities. When I make a lot of money through my work, I am experiencing the abundance that I know I will share with her and my children. When I am taking care of my body and exercising, I know that I am sculpting a beautiful gift to give to the one I will love and cherish for the rest of my life. Sex is important, so I’m inspired to give her the sexiest man that I can be. Sex connects loving couples and helps them persist through the tough times that life throws at us.
Sexual Freedom and Sexual Slavery- Your Decision
Sex is not meant to bond us to people who have no interest in our lasting happiness. Sex in that context becomes sexual slavery. How many people have you known to persist in obviously toxic relationships when reason and common sense would tell a person to flee? Sex can be seriously awesome, or seriously damaging. That is all dependent on our perception of it; how we plan for it.
When I am inspired by the sheer beauty of a passing woman, I experience gratitude for my wife, who I will be moved by infinitely more. It’s something to look forward to, and it is something worth believing in. I also see my children in that desire, and so I’m naturally propelled to succeed and live an inspired life. For you women- You want an inspiring husband, right? And you want your children to have an inspiring Papa, Right? So encourage your male friends to change their perceptions of what you are and what you mean to them, and help them to channel their inspiration in creative ways that leaves you, and them, with more.
Love always leaves more; love is fruitful. Acting on lust will leave you with less, and it will also leave your children with less. Love=Peace, Lust=war. We lust after the middle east’s oil, so we make war. If your relationships aren’t leaving you with more, I encourage you to try another way. I encourage you to actually plan for the success that you desire in a relationship.
Make Your Plan
Seriously, get a pen and paper. Write all the traits down that you won’t compromise on in yourself and in your mate. Map out the milestones you want to hit before you commit to someone for the reset of your life. For me, I knew that I wanted to be honest 100 percent of the time before I was committed to another person for life, so I committed to honesty every day to prepare myself. Include your relationship success in your weekly plans, and make time for the personal growth you must earn to achieve the dream.
If you don’t have a plan, you will only get what you wouldn’t plan for. Who plan’s for divorce, hollowness, misery, broken-down kids, and all that junk? That stuff happens for lack of a better plan, and only you have the power to change that.
If you want to have meaningful and lasting connection with your spouse, practice meaningful and lasting connections. If you practice superficial and transient connections, like with pornography, you will prepare your brain to do the same with your wife. If you practice viewing all women with dignity, respect, honor, and attentiveness to their feelings, then your wife will have the benefit of a real man who can last and grow with her. She deserves that gift, and you deserve her presence. So, practice for her.
Next time you see a beautiful woman, practice the thoughts that you know will lead to lasting happiness and meaningful connection. Be grateful for the beauty you observe, and for your sexuality. Practice thoughts of gratitude, appreciation, respect and encouragement.
Put yourself in your partner’s shoes. Would you wish that your spouse prepare herself for you? Would you want your husband or wife to be dedicated to you through and through? Think of it like this: If your partner is making sure the he or she is staying true and refining their love for you on a daily basis, how likely would they be to throw away all of that hard work and dedication for a fleeting feeling later down the road? Relationships fail for a lack of commitment, so if you practice commitment, you will succeed.
Conversely, if your future spouse isn’t preparing for you and honoring you by valuing themselves and practicing commitment, how likely would they be to step outside of a relationship later on? Statistically it is around a 60% percent chance, but that says nothing of the unhappily married couples who rue the day of their wedding.
Freedom in Lasting Relationships
As men and women, we are free in relationships through marriage. Free as in: free from vice, free from losers who only want you for your body, free from want, free from lust, free from heartbreak, and free from knowing that you could have done better.
The freedom of marriage is only an extension of the freedom secured through preparing for it. Through the commitment of marriage, a person frees themselves to be part of a team that creates new love and ensures a happy home for it in their bodies and in their house. Through marriage, a person is free to be fulfilled and secure, and they are free to share that with the next generation.
Through marriage, the masterpiece of your love is shared with your family. Those who come after you will have your masterpiece to elaborate on, or at least use as a template for their very own. This, ladies and gentlemen, is a vast privilege that we are in charge of in this very moment. We have been given everything that we need to be happy and content beyond measure if only we make up our minds to live that way; if only we prepare to live that way.
If you don’t practice love and if you count on luck to save you from your own inadequacy, any marriage that you enter will be false. It will be a farce, and it will be viewed as a restriction to your “sexual freedom”. Would you want your spouse to view you as a safety from loneliness and as a consolation prize? Or, would you want your spouse to live courageously and thoughtfully so that they would have the enormous privilege of sharing a life in love with you? The difference is night and day, and it comes down to a simple choice: to love, or not. That decision gets easier and easier with practice.
I sure as heck wouldn’t want to marry you if you regarded me as a consolation, as settling. Any person with an interest in happiness would think similarly. The law of attraction always applies, so please think of your children. Would you want them to grow up viewing a lackluster and false representation of what love says and does? You and your spouse will be the first and foremost example of love in your children’s lives. If you make that example a good one and if you make it true, you will be a living peacemaker.
When love is lucky, love is cruel. When love is lucky, love favors some and not others. When love is lucky, love is a lie and it isn’t worth believing in.
For many generations, people have gradually and incrementally externalized their power to love in different icons and concepts, all of them false, leaving us today with a completely inverted perception of what it means to love. You may not realize how important you are, but I do. Believe in something better for yourself; you are worth it, and you are capable of it. Create the peace that you desire in this world, in this lifetime. Believe in the art of love, and believe in your capability of perfecting it with practice. Believe in marriage, and the freedom and healing that comes through it.
For me, there is no higher honor than being blessed with the capability of creating new life. For every life, there is a unique facet of love that has the power to change the world and impact the lives of many. To have the power to create this immensely important thing is nothing short of miraculous, and that means that you are a miracle. Your mom and dad are miracles. Your husbands and wives are miracles. Your children to be are miracles.
Take the responsibility for love seriously and make it a certainty by practicing; by preparing. Challenge yourself to make something better than what has been labeled “ normal” by our current society. Do something different. Make your relationships part of your lasting masterpiece.
If you’re having trouble and need some support, get in touch with me at dowlingwriter.com
Newsflash! Lasting and successful relationships do not happen incidentally!
They are planned for, and are worked hard to achieve and maintain. If you associate work with a dead end job that you toil at to pay bills, that may not seem like such a great deal. But, if you realize that your work can also be your passion, you’ll have it made to the end of your days.
One reason that people shy away from the responsibility of planning and committing to the relationship of their dreams is that they believe love is lucky.
People tend to see lasting success in relationships as lucky. They’ll say “Lucky in Love”, while shaking their heads and half smiling, perhaps thinking wistfully of the loves they’ve lost. When people think of this common saying, they attribute the success of love to luck. Just dumb, random luck.
This serves two purposes:
1. It helps to externalize the responsibility for one’s own failure in relationships by attributing success to the concept of luck.
2. It allows a person to be complacent in their thinking and actions by placing faith in the external, which is the concept of luck. It’s almost like waiting to win the lottery.
“Americans see themselves not as an exploited proletariat, but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” John Steinbeck
People just as readily view themselves as temporarily embarrassed lovers. Luck will save them, and then they’ll be happy like the other lucky ones.
Here is the deal… There is no such thing as lucky in love, but only love. When you live love and practice on yourself in preparation for your spouse, it is the universal law of attraction that assures you will be coupled with a person of equal goodness. The better you are at something, the luckier you will appear to another who hasn’t put time and practice into a thing. Luck is only an illusion of the unpracticed. The aphorism, “love is more than a feeling” is trite but true. If you have failed in relationships and are looking for a better way, practice the love you wish to receive on yourself.
Practice Like You Want to Play
Practice makes perfect. When you practice love and perfect the art of love, the good feelings that come with love will be a natural and beautiful part of the masterpiece of your life. Does slipshod craftsmanship and half-assed artistry inspire anyone? Neither will your life evoke the feelings you desire unless you approach it with a dedication to the art of making love. Until you are uplifted naturally by your own masterpiece, you will accept temporary highs as the best you can get. Sadly, relationships that aren’t part of your masterpiece of love will fall under the temporary highs, and they will have no substance to inspire a lasting and fruitful love. Temporary highs lead to lows when they fade away, and that low is not something that anyone would hope for or practice.
How are your practicing love on yourself? How are you practicing love in your relationships? How are your practicing love in your work? What colours are you painting your masterpiece with? Are you dedicating time and space to the skill of love? Are you dedicating thought and quiet to plan your masterpiece?
I’ve found that rather than practicing the skill of love and attracting the love of their lives, people have been conditioned to settle for distractions that bring them a temporary feeling.
The reasoning goes something like this- “Hey, if love is lucky and I have to wait my turn, I might as well feel good while I wait!” No one wants to feel bad, so it is natural to tend towards feel-good things without a long term plan.
While you are using another person for the chemicals you allow yourself to feel around them, you are practicing the opposite of love, which is fear. You are practicing hiding from the reality that you are the one who is responsible for the fulfillment in your life with someone who very well could be the love of someone else’s life! It’s pretty awful. I’ve been there, you’ve been there, and we’ve all been brought up in this way. With the divorce rate at over 60% and paltry levels of marriage satisfaction, it’s time we choose a better way.
We have to practice how we want to play, there is no other way about it. If you practice hiding from love in the comfort of other people’s bodies, you won’t be prepared to accept it when it does come around.
The Art of Love- Your Masterpiece
Turn to the art of love today, and concentrate on adding to your masterpiece. You can’t paint this life work if you don’t practice, so look in the mirror and see your canvas. Stop distracting yourself from the big game and start preparing. A dream without a plan will always remain just that; a dream. Reality is built on your plans, so don’t waste another moment.
Be inspired to build the love that you envision and hope for. As you practice on yourself, you’ll start to notice that you naturally open up to others, and your interactions become more about giving. If you desire to give yourself the health, happiness and success you deserve, you’ll have more energy and more desire to fill those same needs in the people around you. The Law of Attraction says that you will find yourself in similar company eventually, but give it time. Practice your masterpiece to make it perfect.
You don’t want to give anything less than the best of yourself for your spouse and your children. You don’t want to look at your broken kids after a divorce and say, “I could have done better.” It’s common for children to say to their parents after divorce, “Why didn’t you just try harder?” So that you don’t have to experience that anguish, I have a preventative question- Why don’t you just plan smarter?
The simple logic goes like this- If you practice temporary satisfaction in relationships, you have no choice but to let yourself down when it comes to longterm expectations. If I expected a virtuoso performance from myself the next time I have a guitar show but did not practice every day in preparation, I would let myself and my audience down.
This doesn’t mean that dating and getting to know a potential mate has to be dull and painful. In fact, it is just the opposite, but it does require a perception change. If you fully believe that there is no point in a relationship outside of fleeting sexual satisfaction, you will find friendship before marriage contemptible. If you believe that discovering more of yourself and you partner before marriage is an adventure and a privilege, then you will be fulfilled and completely content in the friendships you engage in while always having more to offer.
If you are committed to your own lasting fulfillment in life, you will not prematurely give yourself to another who has a different agenda; they will leave you empty and alone. If your agenda happens to be temporary pleasure, you have absolutely no shot at a lasting and significant relationship. A fixation to the feelings that you think a partner gives you, sexually and otherwise, will distract you from the truth of their being. To even care about the truth of someone else, you must first seek to know the truth of yourself.
Love Knows No Fear
Outside of marriage, you will not find that truth in someone else’s body, nor will they in yours. If truth and lasting happiness could be found through sex, everyone who had sex would also find lasting marriages. This clearly is not the case. In a real marriage founded on mutual respect, admiration, honesty and commitment, sex is the truth because that couple desires their love to grow and expand. When the truth of such a couple’s love leads to sex, there is never any fear of the life that can come through their love because love does not know fear.
Most people settle for less then complete respect, admiration, attraction, honesty and love because they don’t believe they are worth it. This is no coincidence, because if our parent’s broke up, they are telling us that we aren’t valuable enough to stay together for. We need two loving parents, so the message of divorce resonates clearly, though not loudly, in our minds as children. In order to believe in such a way that enables you to experience the richness of fulfilling and lasting love, you have to reprogram yourself. The best way to do that is to start a different dialogue with yourself.
When you see yourself in the mirror, see and say “worthy”. See and say “value”. See and say “respectable.” See and say as many positive things about yourself and about what you deserve as you can. Do this every day, several times a day and make it a habit. Do it until you can no longer accept inferior offerings from people who don’t have your lasting fulfillment in mind. Then, do it until you die! What a happy and satisfying death that will be, I guarantee you. Life is what we make of it, and our life is built from our thoughts.
Sexual desire as a human is perfected through sex only when love is present. Love is life, and our love creates new human life to experience and create in different ways yet unknown. In the case of two fearless people in marriage, sex is an adventure into the unknown. For them, sex is perfect and sex is the truth. In their case, each sexual experience is an adventure in love, and because of this, the sex gets better each time, even into the golden years! (This is a real phenomenon- google it)
In another instance, where two people fear the life that they could potentially create through, they suppress their ability to create human life. Instead of sex being loving and adventurous, it becomes trite and all too known. This is one reason so many people’s sex lives fizzle in no time flat. It seems strange that many 80 year-old couples are experiencing immensely greater sexual satisfaction than 20 somethings…Unless you factor in love. Love renews, and lust just dies.
Creating new human life is inarguably the coolest thing in the world, ask your parents. No matter their great accomplishments, you are the most important achievement in their life. You are your parent’s love expressed fearlessly and courageously, and your talents and impact are unlimited. The ability to create you is powerful, and not to be taken lightly. When that power is wielded without the intelligence we were endowed with, bad things happen. The adventure becomes a broken prison, and the new life becomes a slave to fear.
Have you come to expect anything less than lasting love and fulfillment from your relationships? This slavery cycle repeats when new life refuses to break out of the prison and accepts its chains as normal decor. These chains are broken families and broken hearts, emptiness, want, and all limiting beliefs about relationships like “marriage is for suckas”. They keep us from achieving our highest potential in life and our relationships if we accept them.
Fortunately, we have incredibly large and powerful brains. Even the most convincing prison isn’t enough to contain us if we have a desire for something better; if we simply cannot accept the chains.