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04/04/10
Marcia was a bad mother but her instincts were strong. She paid the price for her deception, and my mother hated her because of her deception - but all my mother could think was to hate black. How could she hate womankind when she was a woman?

So the young sap allowed his drunken dick to lead him into this married woman. Then the sap took over, and love conquers all - in a different way true. So Marcia says she loves the sap - first lie, and the sap with his love conquering all quite rightly says he will take her away from the battering. And he does. But he also rightly says that he cannot control teenage boys and they will be a problem, so she lies again. She will bring the two young children and leave the two old boys with the father.

But fate pays her for the lies. Her young boy was so completely out of control, being the child of a batterring father and a battered and drunk mother. The sap begins to take the boy in hand but it takes time, and the boy causes tremendous difficulties between the using mother and the sap. Now the mother was not a good mother, and all she was after was some peace so her amoral instincts lead her to a crazy decision. Let the boy stay away from her for a weekend giving the user and the sap a quiet weekend. Of course the bad mother doesn't think and sent the boy to stay with a friend who was a drunk and could not control her kids. The boy ran out of the house and was killed in a road accident.

It is only too late that the sap learns the mother had sent the child to a drunken friend because he would never have allowed it if he had known. But the mother lied to him again, and this death set the seal on the relationship if her lies ever gave it a chance. Marcia's mother said that there was a reason fate had done this, and you must look for what this good reason was. But as a woman she could not see that fate was punishing womanhood for lies and deception. How could so many lies possibly be rewarded by Nature. The sap of course knew none of this at the time.

Following the death the sap moved away to Brighton to escape the anger of the crazed father. Whilst a good father had a case because the mother had allowed his son to stay with a drunken friend, this man was not good and the sap was quite rightly fearful. Maybe he could physically handle the crazy father but that father would have found a way to hurt him - kill him. But within a few weeks of moving the two boys were with the sap. The girl was now causing trouble, probably put up to it - if not by the mother then by Nature, and Marcia now had her family together.

But they were living in rented accommodation, and the mother needed a permanent home. Maybe the sap resisted the permanent home, I doubt it as the fool still believed love conquers all, but very soon there was a mortgage and a home. Now the mother had what she wanted, a home, the rest of her children together and a good father - the sap. Job done!

But she didn't understand what is meant by a good father - being a bad mother, and more and more the poor behaviour of the children disturbed her peace. Her job also took her out of the house more than half the week, as a bad mother this didn't worry her because the sap could look after the children. But then when she did come back to the house the sap laid into her complaining about the behaviour. She claimed that she was trying to control it but in the end she probably gave up and let the sap suffer. Foolishly the sap saw none of this and still believed she loved him.

But in the end it was all too much for him with the boys in repeated trouble with the law. The whole thing brought him right down. Friends would not know him because his drinking made him maudlin. He visited one set of friends, and the woman said his behaviour was the problem - look how drunk you were, these are only young boys. Again this is the amorality of womanhood, what matters was that the sap should accept the bad behaviour, and not try to create morality in the young. But his wider love could never accept this.

As an aside a user who knew the sap from London took advantage. Mr B saw that the sap was easy pickings. He offered to build an extension for 5000, Mr B finished the job and asked for the money. It was Friday afternoon, the sap was tired and worn out by everything, and gave him the money. The extension did not get finished.

The sap took a break in France, and after a week said that when education had finished within a year the two boys must leave and look after themselves - being 16 and 17, or the sap would leave. Later Marcia said she did not hear this, probably all she heard was that she was to get the house. Game set and match. No morality, but she had her family together with a house.

Of course as a bad mother she didn't have the sense to pay the mortgage, and even though the sap gave up 10000 in equity in the house she didn't make the effort to pay him the money he needed to pay off credit cards - and that she had agreed in keeping the house. The sap still loved her and told her that they could still love each other and be together some of the time. After a year of living miserably and her seeing him once, he went to the lawyer - she was quickly round with a solution - another loan. At this time he did not know she was not paying mortgage - she was earning, two sons had income and one had a partner with income living in the house.

He saw her occasionally and after maybe three years was told that the house had been repossessed - only then learning she hadn't paid any mortgage. The sap was such a fool that he could not believe that if you loved someone you could hurt them like this. He still believed in love conquers all so had not made the effort to get his name off the mortgage. Meanwhile the state hadn't helped. They had informed Marcia that the house was being repossessed and not told the sap. The sap had sufficient credibility, surprisingly enough considering he was such a sap, but he could have turned the debt around by turning the house into a building site. But no the sap could do nothing as yet again he didn't know.

And after a while the letters arrived. When the house had been repossessed squatters had got in. When it was finally sold it did not raise enough money for the mortgage, and now the sap was expected to pay. Meanwhile Marcia had claimed bankruptcy putting all the debts on his shoulders so he had little choice but to leave the country. Now these debts have disappeared as he was able to conduct the probate and there were no notes attached. So apart from a letter to my father claiming that he owed mortgage - thus giving my father a told-you-so over him, that was the end of the sap being in love. And it has left the sap with a view of womankind that is cynical to say the least.

And what of Marcia? The sap met her before leaving the country. She was living with her daughter only, maybe the two boys had returned to the ghetto. And the daughter was pregnant. So did she bring her family together with her deceptions?

So when the teacher says Thammachat to the actions of Marcia, that makes me - now not a sap - even more outraged at the conduct of women. A woman's function is established, they marry to have children. The man needs to be protected from his love. Hollywood presents the image of woman as forlorn and loving, and this is how men want to see them. But women are hard, they are the means by which the species procreates so that is essentially what they do - procreate. The man brings his dick, and whilst that was said derogatorily by one woman of her husband, in truth that is what the woman wants - along with his wallet - at a fundamental level.

But Nature is not as hard on the man as that. If the timing is right then when the man meets the woman she is ready for family as is he. The sap accepted the family as baggage with the one he loved, but he never wanted family - so he was not a good father although he made more than enough effort. When young adults the needs of both match. The instincts of motherhood together with the father's love provide a good home, but that love cannot be spiritual. If the father is on the Path then family is probably not for him - see upekkha below. Young men may not be ready for marriage but a supportive family can make him ready, and he can accept the duties that befall him. And then in old age be spiritual. As for women in old age they often turn to religion - out of guilt for their harshness? No that is unfair. If the relationship happens at the right time, interests match and there need not be discord.

Nature does not want the harshness of women alone, although it does want survival. Nature wants sila. And if the man does not provide the sila religion can.

For love has the direction if you think of the 4 attributes of Love - the 4 Brahma-Viharas - Metta, Mudittha, Karuna and Upekkha. Karuna, compassion, works towards all beings being free from suffering. Love in a relationship brings this direction of freedom from suffering. Love is the morality, the mother provides the nurture and the home, the man provides the love which leads to freedom from suffering.

In life relationships are not fraught with the divisions of the sap and Marcia. The sap was already deeply committed to the Path despite his drinking. There was no way the sap could escape the Path. And that was why his love was so strong because Love is the Path. But his Love lacked one of the attributes - upekkha. The Path of Love should not be so carelessly attached, upekkha is the gift that enables the wise to avoid such attachments.

So what about Billnext? Will he avoid such attachments? Love is the Path, and that Love is for all - it is unity connecting. But what will happen to Billnext when he is young? Hopefully he will go to a monastery whilst his sexuality is at its highest, or if he is to work for a home his partner will be part of a good family where both families are willing partners. Bill did not bring his love to this life properly. He was with a father who squashed love, and so he never grew up loving - despite a mother who deeply wanted to love. This unnatural development led to huge passions and love spilling all over the place. Mixed with drunkenness this was a disaster waiting to happen, and when the factors came together it was with Marcia. Marcia gave Bill being in love, and he is grateful for that, and at the same time he has learned that such love is not meant for one - it is Love that connects us all. Love is being.

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F for fear - 05/04/10
I got involved with F - for fear. This poor man had a terrible childhood, and left him under control of a deep fear as a result of his treatment during his childhood. To hide that fear was controlling him the fear had developed a strong outer facade, and the first time I met him he was discussing making inappropriate relationships. F also believed that a solution to the world's issues was training people to be able to meet, and that if people were able to meet each other deeply the world would be a better place. The focus for F was in the meeting, and I suggested strongly that I considered it was a problem where people cannot meet deeply until they know themselves first. This was resisted and because I was talking about this I was resisting his position. I also presented his position as outer, and that was also resisted.

Throughout my deeper discussions with F I heard a quiver in his voice as if he was holding back tears. He never cried although he intimated that he did cry. You must also understand that F has a very good social personality. People willingly helped him as I tried, so perhaps he was used to accepting help and then rejecting it.

Now F had developed terrible back pain, and he was being bashed from medical pillar to post. One time an ill-trained masseuse had damaged his back with an elbow, another time a diagnosis had led him to cycling 10 km of a day - cycling through some pain. Eventually he realised he needed rest, and at the time he needed rest he had problems with a guest house. I offered him to stay with me so he could eat well and rest up. A few days later he did come and the first two days he was there it was obvious he needed sleep in a safe environment, and I was pleased to provide that.

Now F was a keen Buddhist, and had stayed at Wat Tamkabrok claiming he did not have an addiction. F had been asked to stay on and take orders. Now F indulged in beer and hash but at the time I met him it did not have control of him. But he was a wanderer, and for me that was an outer expression of running from his fear.

For me the real issue of this blog-entry is my need to help and my frustration and anger that ensued when that help was impolitely dealt with. So F had accepted my offer of a place to rest. We had a number of discussions concerning the conditions of this offer, and I made it clear that I was expecting him to stay up to two weeks so that he could see if his back could recover so that he could enjoy the rest of his trip to LOS. He had been worried that I was only offering for a day or two. As I said the first couple of days he slept most of the time, but when he wasn't sleeping we talked of Buddhism. I mentioned Paul Pitchford and Chi-Gung, and he seemed to want to follow up on these. This pleased me.

Through our discussion his fear became more and more vulnerable, and because it had control he said he felt more vulnerable. I tried to suggest the internal cleaning meditation that I had used with my anger but he said his fear was too strong and he felt he couldn't do it. I feel and still feel that his fear is clinging to control, and that if he made efforts to let go of it he could be free of the worst of it. He let his fear dominate. He knew his fear well enough that it made him run.

As he gained from his rest there was more discussion, and then he discussed expressing his fear. By this time I had discovered that he had worked as a therapist, and it was clear that he wanted to release through a therapeutic session. I was neither trained to cope with this nor did I feel that it was what he needed as he was clearly versed as a word-merchant. After discussing this in a circular fashion for a while he went to bed, and the next day he announced that he was leaving. I was very angry. I have no doubt that the anger was visible but I never expressed the anger. I am sure my voice was quivering with anger. Why was I angry? I had let him stay in my home to recover, and he had suddenly decided to move on. He disrespected what I offered him. His fear had brought him in for a therapy session in my home, and when I told his fear that I was not going to allow it to control him and that it was to be released by F going deeper, fear sought a means of escape - leaving my home. But what annoyed me the most was that he had accepted my offer of rest with his own agenda. Throughout our contact he had begun to see me as someone who could help - he said as much, but I feel he had accepted my offer to use my house for therapy sessions and not as a place of rest as offered.

Maybe a month later our paths crossed again, and I investigated whether there was still a way to help. For me it was a bitter conversation. He had previously mentioned Ven Gunaratana's "Mindfulness in Plain English", and it was good for me that he had as it helped me come to some terms on mindfulness (see this blog-entry). We began discussing concentration and mindfulness. I said to him that my practice was not good on concentration but was more about mindfulness and how mindfulness had released anger. I then went personal to say how I had seen the fear and how it was frightened to lose control. He then turned it on me, and talked quietly of how he had seen the anger the morning he left the house and how he was afraid of it. Based on the chronology I have laid out, his fear of my anger had to have occurred after his decision to leave, and that fear of the anger was a rationalisation. Furthermore it was hands-off by his fear, his fear will use any means to keep me away from undermining it.

There was further evidence that the fear had gained control, because apart from discussing meditation he discussed this therapy book in which it asked him to recognise that he was damaged before moving forward. In the recognition of being damaged I saw that the fear had taken a deeper hold. He tried to suggest that Buddhism was for normal people but it was all about his ego/fear succeeding in taking greater control. As for concentration he described meditation that lasted two hours, he was able to attain states way beyond anything I could do. Yet he was still avoiding mindfulness what, I assessed, he needed to let the fear go. He had not addressed anatta, he indulges the self. But the first step on the Path is sila yet he was willing to indulge p as well as some alcohol. This is not the 4 Noble Truths.

It was clear that F had manoeuvred himself beyond anything I could do, and I was pleased to know that there was no more I could do. The last morning was difficult. The previous evening there had been drinks on the beach, and he was going home to continue with the plan concerning "how to meet" that he had discussed before this started. It might be useful but it could not help him deal with what is really troubling him. The last morning we met and his fear would not allow further analysis. I had already understood the hands-off the previous conversation but he did not know this. There was absolutely no communication, but at the time of leaving he did thank me for what I had given him. Sadly for me it was not the deep thanks for what I had really hoped to impart.

With the best of intentions I made a big mistake in inviting F into my home. Even though F's conduct was not good with his agenda and disrespect, who could live up to what I asked for as that commitment? That is not something I can do again.

Then there was the additional anger that came from not being able to help, the frustration at seeing F say that he knows he does A, B, C and then watching him do it, and not having control to stop it. Should a teacher have that level of control?

My relationship with F was yet another failure of teaching to the Path. Because of the unwritten onus placed on someone staying with me this was a mistake but he sought out someone to teach him and that happened until I refused to listen to his fear consolidate. What am I doing wrong with these interactions? I want to teach too much , what is the answer to this?

06/01/11

F returned to Ao Taan Khuu again this year. When we met he tried to hug me, I put my arms around him but turned my face away. His front has come into play throughout the season. He always starts being pleasant, and we have superficial conversations - usually about his travel plans or his being transvestite and buying clothes. But invariably the conversations result in some form of attack, often based on a misunderstanding but his fear coming out and attacking. There have been times where I have wanted to force the issue, control yourself or don't speak to me. But that hasn't happened. Often he makes fleeting conversation and then disappears.

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12/11/10
I'm not saying I've beaten it yet but I am going to describe my shame - my stuff. Maybe I am too ashamed to blog it but I can't blog what I haven't written.

This new release started with Thay so here is how I reacted to the Thay talk:- What a strange reaction to the Thay talk. I came away angry with myself. What was I doing there?

So why the ego? I can't have been wasting my time. Have I been reading Brad Warner too much? I was sceptical - had doubts. Why?

So I was angry before I went there. I have begun to realise how weak my practice is. My mind is hung up on stuff, and I let it - I even got angry when I saw West Brom had scraped a draw. Why? I don't care, it's football. It's not important so why even a bit of anger. Because I watch it, I make the effort to download and watch it. So I don't really care but that self which makes the effort got angry. I have not bothered with getting rid of this or other distractions, I have got sloppy and am not paying enough attention to the journey. I have anger becaue of my journey.

This morning I wrote to a friend about Thay "I will be envious of his composure and hopefully improve my practice". Well I need to improve my practice but I didn't enjoy the talk. There was some pleasant singing, and then Thay came on. He introduced the choir, there must have been more than 100 monks or nuns on the stage.

I have got ahead of myself. It was supposed to start at 5.00pm but I was warned that late people would have to watch outside on a screen. I don't know if this put people off as there seemed room inside throughout. Anyway I arrived soon after 3.00pm, there were people milling - so I milled. There seemed no point in milling. I moved away and then a queue formed - I diligently joined it. After half an hour in the queue someone came out and said, those with numbers on the left, those without on the right. Immediately the queues changed. But instead of those without numbers joining the second queue, all and sundry pushed into it. The queuing had been a complete waste of time but as I was near the front it didn't matter, I got my seat ticket. I waited around and went in 40 minutes later at 5.00pm. There was some pleasant music for a while, and then what I described above.

Back on track - Thay introduced the choir. He explained the purpose of the chant to Avalokiteshvara as a means of developing compassion, and then they started chanting. My mind reacted against it, it has never been good with chanting but eventually I got into it and it was powerful and enjoyable. I didn't focus on compassion because of my mind, but it was still powerful. Then there was a meditation.

I had had difficulty hearing Thay, and when he started talking it was worse. This made me a little angry, surely for such an important event they could get the sound level right. The scenario reminded me of what had made a friend angry. In truth I have not noticed hearing difficulty in myself - this appears to be the first time, but I do remember my father who refused to admit hearing difficulty and caused others huge inconvenience. I can also understand the quiet-spokenness. The Dharma speaks for itself, why do we need rabble-rousing and reinforcing gestures from the orator. Perhaps if others had difficulty hearing I am vindicated? In the previous talk I attended he had the same authoritative but quiet-spoken manner, and I heard fine. I am 3 years older, maybe my hearing has deteriorated?

I controlled my anger and tried to listen - wasn't catching enough. His image was on an overhead screen - I watched the screen and listened. I caught more of it because of mouth and words being connected. The sound of the translator seemed a suitable volume - I heard occasional Thai words as usual, but Thay was low. After a long while someone pushed the microphone nearer Thay, it was better but not enough. And discomfort worsened. Together with the chanting Thay was on stage for three hours. The seats were cinema seats and not suitable for sitting around for so long, and very soon the discomfort turned to fidgeting - usually the fidgeting occurred during the English. Despite a meditational stoicism I too started fidgeting. Next to me there was a couple with a young child. The child was very good. In the singing there was a song composed by children and the mother had taught the girl the hand movements - what a nice start in life. The child fell asleep, and when she awoke after quite a while the mother began massaging - I felt like saying I needed that.

With the incorrect sound level I had to concentrate more, and for such a long time this became difficult. I almost dozed with the effort. Thay spoke of listening to partners and waiting before giving an answer, last time he spoke of deep listening in a similar vein about Pattani. Mindfulness creating happiness, bringing out happiness from within. There was interbeing, right and left hand hammering nails with the left hand not bashing the right after being hit. Non-duality and discrimination.

I have to mention my reading of a situation with one of the nuns. Not only was the sound level wrong in my view but there was occasional feedback. Such matters should have been corrected. I don't know whether Thay had his own sound people or it was a Thammasat problem. At one point a nun moved a speaker near Thay, I am not sure why but I am guessing a sound issue. Thay waved her away, and she ran off - I think she was distressed. Is the reason the sound level was not dealt with because Thay was unapproachable? This is what it looked like. But I went in angry - dealing with issues, discomfort worsened my frame of mind so I am not prepared to back my assessment here.

Thay was promoting the new Plum Village by describing what could be gained by a retreat - and there was an inappropriate drawn-out plug after he finished. The Brad Warner in me felt money-making, not as blatant as Brad but maybe. Of course Mahayana has to have this element as there is no institutional dana like in Theravada.

I had the right result, I felt angry with myself about my practice so hopefully I will improve it. I expected to enjoy this, and to be honest I didn't - I just felt I should concentrate more on my practice. But my mind was overly critical - a practice issue I know, but why jaunt to Bangkok, this gig was not meant for me; practice is at home.

My attempted recording of the talk did not work so I only have a weak recollection of what he said, and bad memories. From the talk I need to improve mindfulness in my practice, but I already knew that my practice was weak. I had probably been looking forward to it.

I could feel the mental confusion throughout. My mind had been heavy with blackness prior to the talk, I had felt the heaviness with stuff in my head. This is so embarrassing. I am normally so blunt, self-critical and am open about my weaknesses. Yet I still haven't been able to write down what I am talking about - stuff, I am being obtuse on purppose now - changed the blog. It has been a bane in my life for so long, and like the drink I have been able to rationalise it.

When I look back it has brought me so much distress, this addiction. It began late for me at university, I never understood the jokes at school. I cannot recall wet dreams but I remember reading a university questionnaire that asked if I had wet dreams and I knew I didn't want to answer. At university the drink kept me away from women, except occasional drunken forays where I counted myself lucky if I managed to connect in any way with a woman. Despite a number of attempts it was only in my 3rd year before I broke my duck. But in my 1st year I went crazy as I shared a room. What shame!! I could have been arrested for what I did but fortunately I stopped it before I got caught; even now I am so ashamed - however whilst it was disgraceful there was no malevolence. I suppose for most people they had already learnt how to deal with this embarrassment but my lack of adolescent development meant that at university it was the 1st time.

In the 2nd year I stayed alone in the hall. I cannot remember stuff much but I must have between the drink. My next major embarrassment was Sevenoaks, I was in a terrible state there. I had stayed at university for 4 years, then worked at Scicon for a year before going to Sevenoaks. In my final year at university drink was always present but less of an issue, there were less of the blackout sports bingeing. I remember those stupid games - names of, fizz-buzz. They were the start of my gerd. You would sit in a circle and chant give me names of famous Welsh rugby players. When it came to my turn I got it wrong, and was told to drink a window, half a pint etc. Doesn't that sound enjoyable? Most evenings in my 1st year I had puked by 8.00pm. I called this enjoyment but after my 1st year I had learnt how to cope with the games and did not puke. However I still did stupid things with the drink. In my 2nd year there was some kind of drinking team and I wasn't on it. I got angry so me and another reject went out and got drink on shorts by 8.00pm. Having drunk more than a bottle of vodka by 8.00pm I was collapsed on my bed vomit coming out of my mouth. My friend had apparently fallen down some stairs as we dragged each other back to the hall, we were both lucky. How stupid!

Anyway this is not about the drink but what the drink did was mean that instead of being involved with women I became involved with stuff. I had amazing passions for women but I still feel lucky that I never scored especially with J. Such a beautiful and sensitive woman, when I think back to her even now I could still think she would be worth throwing my life away for. I was so lucky. If I hadn't been so confused at that age I could imagine living in Llanelli, I hope she found someone who didn't use her.

Back to my embarrassment in Sevenoaks. The drink was taking me right to the bottom. After uni, once I started work, the drink became worse. Whilst at Scicon I was diverted as I had been able to work with such interesting people and connected with the West End a little. I went to Sevenoaks, and I couldn't say the same. Sevenoaks was then what I suppose it is now, a sleepy Kent suburb made up of money. Of course I had little money, only just starting out. I had a terrible living situation because everything was so expensive. There was a couple, the woman was a teacher. They had their room and a living room with a TV. There were some strange rules about the TV, I can't remember what. I thought the rules were unfair but any rules that kept me away from them would have had to be better for them - I was such a mess. There was another guy there who was at his girlfriend's place or working most of the time. And I had my room. I had to clean up after cooking, that was another bind for me then - God was I a mess? I got into a cycle of drinking and not sleeping and screwing up my job. It was a drab job but I would have screwed up anything. After 3 months I was justifiably sacked. Meanwhile drunken nights I would be involved with my desires, and pages of a magazine were strewn under my bed. For some reason after my partial recovery I returned to the house, and the couple embarassed me as they had found the mag. When I finally got sacked I ran off to my parents - the one time in my life I did that. It was maybe two or three weeks before Xmas. I had hit bottom such an awful place to be. Masturbation was an unimportant part of that hitting bottom but it was there.

After a month I came out of this hitting bottom, and started on my spiritual life. Masturbation was not important then but it happened - there was no pornography. I was only drinking a little but I remember arty friends saying I had a problem. I started teaching. At teacher training I was more successful with women, and I cannot remember any masturbation issues. I do remember having many passions however.

Drink was more of a problem by now and it increased when I started teaching. But at this stage pornography was not an issue - only the TV. I got addicted to this pornographic lifestyle in Africa, maybe 15 years later. In Africa I was much more sexually fulfilled but the relationships were so turbulent that at times it was safer to deal with porn. Gradually I became addicted to it. After Africa I thought about relationships but they never came easily, masturbating probably took the edge off the need to find a woman and after all the turbulence in Africa I was much happier on my own. I still however thought I would be able to find someone. Gradually I became more and more dependent on the masturbation. I didn't object to this. It kept me out of relationships and it never hurt anyone. Being in a relationship I had to cause hurt. I never wanted children and I wanted a woman for some company but they were never a priority - I had teaching.

I should say here that the sexual relationships I had were satisfying, sexually I much preferred the company of a woman - especially black women. I can remember the joy of snuggling up to these women smelling their armpits and being totally comfortable. No wonder I ended up in so much of a mess with them. But throughout my spiritual journey was developing making my relationship needs less and less - only sexual. That offers nothing to a woman.

After Botswana I only got into one more relationship again. In Oman I became a Buddhist, and my spiritual journey even more dominated my life. I slowly became more addicted to porn. I kind of looked for Asian women, Muslim women were not available, and found one user. It didn't last long. In Bahrain I had thought there was more of a chance of Asian women but it never happened and the addiction grew deeper. In China women only wanted marriage. I had a non-sexual relationship with a very nice lady but she was into work and family - and much too young. I got addicted to Asian porn. Back in England for my probate year and I was regularly addicted. That reminds me of how I coped with holidays at my parents. I put an extension cable into the bedroom, went to bed about 11.00pm, and was up all night "on the internet" - porn. In Nigeria I never got involved with women, it was marriage or hookers, neither of which I wanted. I can remember the worst aspects of mental mud in Nigeria. Nigeria was an awful place as was the school, but I was relatively successful. I should have left in the 1st month when they showed how they were going to mess me about, but I didn't. I resigned 6 times but foolishly let them persuade me. But my work with the kids was successful.

But life was work, TV, marking and stuff - in that order. And this mental mud started. I would lie asleep on the sofa and wake up with these appalling pornographic images embellished in my mind. I was being told but I was in no condition to listen.

And then I retired, and gradually my spiritual journey has been working up to now. I have developed spiritually there is no doubt, but there has always been a battle with porn. To begin with when I retired (54), it never bothered me. It was such a relief to retire. I began clearing out all the backlog of work and relationship shit that had built up over the years - see my blogs, and of course I was happily developing spiritually. Then it started to be movies as well as photos especially when I became more active with downloads - well the movies had started in China. I would realise how addicted I had become, and then I would delete them all. And then start again. Michael Rossoff made me realise that my addiction was damaging my life expectancy, but I still continued. I tried renunciation, it would work for a few days and then I gave up. But it did limit it. But then I gave up with that.

And now I hope it is over. Celibacy was never an issue because my spiritual life was too important, and now masturbation is an issue for the same reason. I have reached an impasse where if I don't stop masturbating I will remain stuck. It is taking away the bliss and the creativity - I knew about how masturbating blocked the writing when I was in Brighton writing Kirramura. Those blissful writing experiences pushed away the masturbating and I made an effort to masturbate only when it didn't affect the writing, it worked.

This is also hard to write, how long did I spend masturbating? I rationalised as I did with the drink that it didn't affect my life. Drink was worse as that clearly affected my life throughout, masturbation had minimal external impact. Why should it, it happened to me when I was alone? It saved me from relationships and allowed me to develop spiritually, but as I have got older I am les physically capable and it is taking more of my time. Because of that I am becoming more addicted. In China it was bad because I couldn't sleep. I would get up in the middle of the night and masturbate to try to sleep. Sometimes it worked but it was a pattern that was difficult to cope with, and the meditation suffered because of both. In Nigeria it would be most evenings but the mental mud was the only problem there. But now I have retired it takes longer because I was older. The last time took 5 hours, what a ridiculous waste of time. Oh such a waste!

I am convinced that my reaction to the Thay talk is all about masturbation - it makes you go deaf!! No, I am still convinced the sound levels for the English were wrong. The masturbation and pornography addiction had stressed me out with the mental mud. Thay's talk created further disturbance, not his words but the whole Dhamma feel dug into me making me irritated. I should be irritated. Why should I be wasting so much time and using up my energy wastefully on masturbating?

So I have stopped, I hope. It was never an issue I rationalised. It only hurt me. But there is no me, I was wasting our life. Writing has blocked recently, that is masturbation. Meditation has worsened, and when I did something about it it led to this need to stop masturbating. It is not going to be easy. After the Thay talk I made the decision. With Zazen I have improved meditation, yesterday in the morning it was 50 minutes, and this morning will be 55 minutes. With Zazen I have been meditating after teaching, sometimes as little as 20 minutes. But yesterday I forced and I mean forced 45 minutes. It was not quality meditation, but it was good because I did the 45 minutes when I didn't want to. This morning will be 55 minutes and this evening is a Pandit talk.

But last night was hard. I went to go to sleep, and the images came - not as bad as the mental mud of Nigeria, but porno pictures of these sexy women. They kept coming but I refused and fought it, after all it is my hand that does it. I had such a disturbed night but this morning I woke up and there was a brightness - bliss. It didn't last long but it was enough to tell me to keep refusing. The increased meditation working with the new renunciation might finally kick the addiction. I feel resolved, stronger than I have ever felt, but so many times have I made different vows. I hope this time.

I have read Chi Gung and meditation are ways that have helped monks - along with mindfulness. Since I resolved to stop I have meditated twice a day and have done Chi Gung at least once.

When I get home I shall read Dan Reid on the Tao of Health Sex and Longevity.

There is more than hope. Since I was 50 I had been visiting the monastery, it was my code never to masturbate there, and I stayed as long as two weeks. Of course I didn't have the internet. And one time I renounced for more than a week, and then a movie with a sexy black woman in suspenders gave me the lust to grab for the internet. But my resolve now is stronger.

The purpose of this entry if it ever reaches the net is to admit my shame, and hopefully be a record of how I overcame the addiction. At my age why am I even bothering - I am too old and need to focus on my journey. BZ 21/10/10 09.30.

Sleep has been affected - not surprising. I have to face the fact that tossing and turning before going to sleep did often become tossing. I gave up, and with a sigh of resignation I would often go to the internet. So now that I have recognised the addiction and am acting on that recognition I have to lie there until sleep comes. On the night of the 23rd I woke at 4.00am after 3 hours. I wanted to sleep but couldn't so did some work on the computer. I had a sleepy day - slept in the afternoon. Last night sleep was better, and I have been writing a lot this morning but am now tired BZ 23/10/10 10.03 am

BZ 19/11/10 No choice:- Since returning from Bangkok I have been shameful - basically giving up. It started with the flu - no problem, get me through the flu. That lasted a week. By then I was addicted again, and my mind was playing tricks. It was OK occasionally, tomorrow I will stop. Download clips so that I don't have to go online. Until eventually yesterday I decided I had no choice. I was feeling awful, my meditation was impossible. I had "no choice", I must stop. It is day 2 of "No Choice"!!

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02/1/11
I am uncomfortable with the way things are going in one sense, they are not for public consumption - what public!! This theosophy is getting me not in a rational way but a feeling way. Therefore I am seeking knowledge and not filling my head with systems. But I am beginning to enter areas that I can only perceive as leading me to psychic understanding, and until I know what I am talking about I don't know how to paraphrase it for public consumtion. At the same time I could be making it all up so it stops me from looking a fool.

My chakra healing has already entered the arena of dubious psychic practices but there are plenty of people who have gone there. Chilel uses some of the chakra centres, and Gary Zukav's "Mind of the Soul" uses chakra healing. Less socially acceptable is lying in bed for a good part of the morning and breathing in compassion through the chakras whilst dozing off to sleep. Sounds a bit like the deranged mind of my father in his old age. Although he would never deal in such he did believe that mind could control disease to a certain level - to the detriment of my mother who suffered her chronic pain of rheumatism and bronchitis. In her death the cause of death was dying from excessive pain caused by rheumatism, bronchitis and arthritis (maybe two of the three). He visibly wilted at this I suspect firstly for hoarding money instead of trying to ameliorate the pain and secondly because his smoking in that sealed front room was probably the primary cause of the bronchitis.

Enough of that dig - not a public blog, I am mainly concerned to point out that my mind has the potential for creating illusion, or rather subscribing to illusions that are not illusions of the norm of society. On the fringe as this is I have to be careful what I say, this is not backed by any established theory except theosophy, and whilst theosophy has some credibility they could by most be called cranks. At the same time I remember being sucked into theosophy systems, and there is no doubt at all that my imagination took me to inappropriate areas of glamour and self-importance. I cannot remember where but it would be of the ilk of thinking of discussing with Masters. Now I won't read books where people have made such claims - see ACIM warning and "The Disappearnce of the Universe lying on my shelf.

Now I have been prepared to make a stance based on my experience but I am reaching into areas that I am not sure what I am experiencing. OK let me try to write down about those. Theosophy talks about three bodie, etheric double, astral and mental, and within the mental it talks of the lower mental and causal. Now the etheric double whilst sounding spooky is little more than a chi body. I use chi, I always have in acupuncture and with Tai Chi and now Chilel, so chi needing a body before it can affect the physical body adds little to the credulity or not of chi work. Then we have the astral body and the astral plane so now we are in cloud-cuckoo land, but before I talk about that I want to talk of the mental bodies. I like the notion of a mental plane with thoughts flyng everywhere, this explains to me why we experience thoughts that are clearly not our own but are attracted by the thoughts we already have. And then there is the causal body which accumulates the good intentions and actions, and this non-personal body is the vortex that is me, and is the impersonal source of Billnext.

In meditation and during chakra healing I am withdrawing into the causal body. Now withdrawing to a point in meditation is of course good, but withdrawing into the causal body - debatable. However I am not attaching to the etheric, astral or lower mental, and that is reasonable - whether that means I an withdrawing into the causal is another matter. But it feels as if I am.

Now to elementals. I think these are important but what can I say about them. In Buddhism we are asked to let go of attachments. So you ask attachment to what? And the answer is attachment to desire. But what if the attachments are elementals? Stuff is still my big problem. So because I have lust my astral body, desire-body, is attached to dark elementals associated with that desire. Yesterday I began in the morning trying to release these elementals. I felt the darkness around my 2nd chakra and also around my 6th chakra. In the afternoon for maybe two or three hours I tried to withdraw into the causal body and be pure. Hopefully by purifying my mind I will make my desire body more subtle towards the purer end, and so have less desire for these elementals to cling onto. This morning I woke from a clear dream that I will go more into later. Then I had dozing and purifying and it felt better - when I finally emerged I felt as if my body was lighter.

I suspect consideration of elementals is the most crazy but I have entered the possibility that the astral body is the dream body, and that I can use dreams to create good. Now I have always had a vivid dream life but have never associated it with the possibility of doing good ie daily life implications. This morning I woke from the dream the best I have felt in a long time at waking, before sleeping I had again focussed on trying to do good. What was clear was that the dream was connected to stuff, no stuff good dreaming. Even the unreal Kim!!

I cannot possibly describe this as justification of the theosophical bodies but there is something happening because of theosophy. I am going to record it and see where it goes.

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03/1/11
Failed. I succumbed to lust. Aaggh!

Maybe this or something else made me realise that I needed to be of the Real World - I heard a Zen guy on Buddhist Geeks talking about the being in the body in the Real World, and I realised in meditation that this was the danger of theosophy. Living in other worlds and planes has an attraction, a glamour, yet we are here to live in the Real World. The paradox - live real in the illusion.

This leaves me considering two notions - elementals and astral plane. I believe there was a Marvel character, Dr Stephen Strange, whose abailities traversed the astral plane. It is all kind of glamorous, but it is not real. If prior to going to sleep I think of helping others and that happens, well that's the business. But conscious in the astral plane - no thanks. However thinking of the bodies is useful. Understanding the etheric body as a means of understanding how chi works is good, I have just started a search. The astral has too much glamour attached to it, but recognition of a desire body is useful and then not attaching to this desire body. As for the mental bodies, to think of a level of thoughts in which there is a vortex associated with my causal body is again useful. Thoughts and ideas are not mine but belong to a plane in which the vortex attracts similar is useful. Why? Because it teaches us to seek purer thoughts, purer thoughts - more subtle material - less rigic separate egos. And it is worth meditating on withdrawing into the causal body as point or wave - behind the heart chakra. It is this point from which the other bodies emanate and as such returning the point and then moving outwards gives greater control of the bodies and whether the causal body attaches to them. One aspect of this body is will, and will or determination are important as a means of controlling the attachment to bodies. Somewhere I read that in the beginning will is not strong enough to fight the attachment but with time determination can will out. I don't know whether the only way I will will out over stuff is through old age and inability, but it is necessary for me to foicus on determination.

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07/1/11
I read that in Tibetan we are born in families as a son if we love the mother and as a girl if we love the father. This takes some thinking in my family. I now fully understand that I was born to love my mother, and for much of my life I failed in that. As a child we copied our father and he was an abuser. He did not physically abuse my mother as far as I know, but emotionally she was completely repressed. There are no doubts that she had weakness in that area, she did not have the strength of many women.

Yet at the same time her maternal love was her own downfall. She could not accept treating her husband badly in the same way as her own mother had treated her father. When she realised what a mistake she had made - marrying an emotionaly-repressing man, around the time of her ECG she decided that she must accept her lot. At the same time she decided that her lot was her lot and no-one was to know about it. She was so good at that that one son never knew and I never knew until late in her life. By that time you could see the damage in her as her thinking was not complete, there were areas she could never think about. But in truth of the two her spirit shone through in later life. As my father declined he had less energy to be controlling. The areas he wanted control of became less and less, and she was able to give him control in those areas and maintain control elsewhere. As a result she spiritually began to bloom, and was an impressive woman in her old age.

I now realise that my father loved her - he could not live without her, despite my fulfilling outwardly his controlling needs when I took care of him. But my father was damaged goods and he could not love - he was so scared of being emotionally damaged that he controlled the emotions of my mother and us as children. We could not express our emotions. Even though he would allow us to love, even though he wanted us to love him, he could not allow us to express that love emotionally. He wanted love wthout feeling so he could not get hurt. And yet these very restrictions that he placed on others were the ones that he placed on himself. He loved his wife but could not express it. When she died he was deeply hurt inside, wanted to replace her, and was willing to see if I could replace her. When he found he could not control me to make me fit into that replacement he chose not to live further - he died. For my part I could be dutiful, I could provide for his physical needs, cooking, keeping the house clean, but emotionally I couldn't. I never loved him, my emotions were nearer that of hating him for the way he abused my mother. When we argued I was content to withdraw into myself, this was the last he wanted. He could only control when someone wanted from him, I wanted nothing but to do my duty for my mother. The sad thing is that if he had been able to control me that would have meant love for him, he would have been able to love me and if I had been able to allow him to control me that abusive relationship could have kept him alive longer. But whilst I could offer duty I could not abdicate that control and living with him meant that he was doomed to die - because he could not abuse me. His need for love was important to him, and whilst having his need for love met with my mother by controlling her, despite his physical needs being met when I looked after him his need for controlling love was never met. And he chose to die.

The word needs was very prominent in my discussions with my brother, and it is this word needs that explains the abuse in our family and it started when my father copied the abuse of his own father. My mother was highly critical of my grandfather but I was too young to know. When my mother bothered to say things she was usually right so in this generation I do see the source of my father's problems in my grandfather. But my father was very spoilt by an elder sister so it could just be his own family dynamics. Whatever, my mother was glad to get my father away from the domineering of Wallasey, although when she was on her own with my father was the time when she was driven insane. When I was younger I used to say that all men were chauvinists but that my father was the one who practised it in the home whereas most men pretended only with other men. That fits in with the needs notion. When I was 21 I used to blame my mother for accepting it but now that I know about her view of her parents I understand why she became a chattle. When we were young my brother and I contributed to that chattle process, because we copied our father.

This needs approach was also the source of my own failure to find a relationship. My main need was for spirituality, I needed a relationship that allowed me to be spiritual. I now know that is mostly impossible but when I was young I had the sex drive so I wanted sex and to be spiritual - now I want to be spiritual and wish I didn't have any sex drive! In truth I was never able to give on this spirituality, I needed to be spiritual and what happened in relationships was ultimately second to that - despite the sex drive. I am willing to give now but in terms of spirituality. I have never been tested but I think I could give 100% to spiritual, especially spiritual education; I did give close to 100% to education and there was much I didn't believe in. I never wanted a child, I sometimes thought I wanted to love a woman, but I could never give myself 100% to one person. Maybe this is what women want in love, for the man to give 100% - and then they can control for their own agenda the children and the home.

In discussion with my brother he said his marriage broke down because his needs weren't being met. In truth I hadn't realised at the time that this was my father speaking, my brother loved my mother in the same way my father did - satisfying his needs. When I was young I fell in line with that but as an adult I could not. In some ways I rejected falling into that line. As a boy I was angry because I loved my mother and she was being abused. That anger turned to bullying, and I am now convinced the source of my bullying my brother was that he was my father. I am not sure whther my brother would have treated my mother badly as an adult but he describes his needs the same way as my father acted, and there is the Tibetan Buddhist adage.

My brother spoke of non-verbal communication, and my father would not dream of talking "such rubbish". But other than that it was my father speaking - to be fair the needs my brother spoke of did not appear the same as the needs my father enacted. And satisfying needs in a loving relationship can be an equitable thing, certainly was not with my father - might be with my brother. My brother's assessment of his marriage was that he was dominated. In some ways I believe that. I believe his wife was older, she was certainly more worldly. I can also imagine she was quite emotional so he would have gained from that. By the time his needs issues were on the table, she was a fully-fledged mother and the husband's needs were secondary. He left her. He needed a woman like my mother who would have accepted his demands. In practice he sees my mother in the same way as he sees his wife - controlling and manipulative. He recalls stories of mother manipulating the situation so as to blame my father, waiting for father to come home to give out corporal punishment. I never discussed this with my parents but I saw it as my father giving orders, his decision to use corporal punishment that she must follow. I remember her trying to stop corporal punishment occasionally - the excesses. My brother has a beef with the corporal punishment, in truth I don't. I can remember the "it hurts me more than it hurts you" spanking, and am not perturbed. However I can remember his emotional rages, and they frightened me a great deal - but in truth I can't remember being hit when he was in one of those rages. I can remember trying to defend my brother one time, so I suspect he did get hit in these rages. I can also remember his getting in a rage with me when I was caring for him. I can remember looking down on him, squaring off to me, as he raised his arm in a fist and then putting it down again. He was a boxer when young, I could imagine his looking at me and thinking I was too big.

If it is all about needs it is not about morality, and that was certainly the case. Look at me in my first relationships - chasing tail in a drunken stupour offering nothing. I deeplt regret the lack of morality in my upbringing, and in Nature morality is provided by the male.

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09/01/11
Chakras are real. I have just had the weirdest of nights and some nights are weird. It began during my teaching where I was scratching too much. I looked at the pattern of scratching - they were some sort of fleas "Ao Taan Khuu fleas". So I changed my seat cover and had a shower. Went to bed about 00.30, and woke up just after 2.00. I was not comfortable, the return of the flea feeling. I got up, changed my sheets, had a shower, and went back to bed. No chance. Looked in Paul Pitchford about fleas, and he said garlic. I crushed some garlic, put in some lemon, filtered it, and added water. I put this concoction around my ankles and in my hair. Seemed to help but sleep had gone. Gave up, went to watch TV and stuff. About 05.00 I went to bed. But I felt cold, it wasn't cold. I put on some clothes and a cardigan, and began to sleep.

I woke up after the most powerful dream. I had just saved a "civilisation" - Stephen Strange? - by emitting great power from my heart chakra. This was very vivid. I lay there and I could feel this strange circular vortex on an outer body layer above the heart, it had no colour, and had a kind of shimmer. It is hard to describe but it was substantive. I checked my other chakras. The solar plexus was there but very weak. The navel was surprisingly stronger as was the root chakra. They definitely felt real. I was examining them and fell asleep.

When I woke up I wanted to blog this - chakras are real. Of course none of this is scientific, rationalists!

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05/03/11
I had an interesting but difficult encounter with F this week, it has taught me much about spiritual tourism and how confusion can arise.

I find it difficult to assess F's relationship to the Path. In speaking to him one time I said he was on the Path but it appears to me he is clearly straying. One clear pre-requisite of the Path is the lack of attaching to self but he has spent two weeks with a prostitute ladyboy. If it was me that would self-evidently be selfish, but refrain from judging. It is however immoral, and moral integrity is a pre-requisite of the Path.

Fear is a self so selfishness has to be a consequence, he has not dealt with his fear and we never discuss that. This week his fear felt arrogant enough to address issues and it now appears that was a mistake for his fear as he is not speaking - even his false bravado has disappeared. I told him that I had an issue with lust, and the Path in him would clearly reflect on that, his fear would then turn that into criticism of him and hence the disappearance of the false bravado.

But the conversation was so difficult, and confusion was evident. In addition the use of spiritual lessons had become a tool to feed his fear. When I spoke of attachment to lust and not wishing to attach to it, he said non-attachment is also an attachment. His approach was that what is is the Path, and that was his awareness. This is perfectly reasonable if we are self-aware people. Certainly someone deeply entrapped by fear (he describes himself as damaged) cannot accept what is in himself as awareness, a nice ego trick.

There was more intended miscommunication, and another apsect of his fear trap. Society is afraid of ladyboys, this is clearly the case. He had rationalised that this fear is because people were afraid that they too would be attracted by ladyboys if they knew them. Maybe that is true, but the fear of what is not "normal" is an insecurity fostered in society to maintain the capitalist status quo. He would not let me say this because his rationale meant that he had overcome a fear that many in society hadn't or couldn't.

And then there was that completely annoying non-communicative refusal to accept any form of using we, this was so clearly self. I cannot be classified with others, I am so different. It is so frustrating to see people who have made some effort on the Path struggling and be unable to do anything because of their attitude. F is a clear example of someone who needs a teacher because his personal studies have not enabled him to let go of his fear, yet at the same time he has had innumerable teachers. He wants a teacher who will allow his fear to dictate but what would then be taught?

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19/03/11
I can't believe I have wasted so much time and effort on this man F, there is no other word for it - he is a fool - F for fear and F for fool. He simply tries to recreate the mess that is his mind into his daily life, maybe we all do.

He is infatuated with this ladyboy and has decided he wants to live with her (they call themselves her so I will do that out of deference, but middle sex?). I have no idea whether he is paying for her company but I expect so, so he wants to pay to live with a prostitute in Denmark. No sensible-thinking person would want to do that, he is just so confused. I thought he was besotted and needed help in sorting things out, so I got involved slightly, and it taught me one thing:- it is the last I will be involved with his craziness and confusion.

The other day I happened to meet him whilst I was visiting another beach acquaintance, and he mentioned Dharma Dan. When I was "Engaging with Dharma Dan" I had printed out two copies of "Mastering the Core Elements of the Teachings of the Buddha" so I gave him one. Dharma Dan talks straight so I had hoped that his straight talking might get Rory to look straight, but his fear has him so messed up that that was a foolish hope. Thinking that there might be something genuine in F's relationship with this ladyboy, I asked him to go to Pattaya and talk with people who had maybe been in similar situations. I could not believe that a ladyboy would be happy so far from her community, and that by taking her to Europe F would be creating a living hell for himself. Maybe these Pattaya people would tell him straight, and there would be an end to this nonsense. Far from it! When I mentioned it he began rambling about how he would feel in a way that he felt he was talking sense. He accepted he would have heartache, financial ruin and others, but his biggest issue was with doubt. Apparently somewhere Dharma Dan had given an analogy with space invaders shooting doubts back at him and he had to just knock them down when it happened. He had not given any thought to how the ladyboy would feel in such a strange environment. I mentioned taking a black woman to live in Brighton, and how in racist societies black people enclave in their ghettoes, and how they are afraid of holidays - they need their communities. But he continued to talk about himself and how he felt, he is just self-obsessed - a self-obsession created by his fear. If ever there was a man who needed a guru this fool is one but he would never accept a guru. There is no point in wasting any more time on this fool. He has been opened to the teachings and all he does is turn it into confusion and hell, how strange I really don't understand.

And now I question my own involvement here. Am I being completely stupid in thinking that he would want a relationship with this ladyboy? Is he thinking that he can just buy happiness with her and that is why he doesn't even consider her feelings? Why have I wasted so much time on this fool? I so need to help I am wasting all this time.

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21/03/11
I feel totally embarrassed about the time and effort I have wasted on F, where was my judgement? I have just discovered that the ladyboy was 19. This disreputable 62-year-old man was trying to take a 19-year-old away from their country. He is just so completely selfish and morally bankrupt, and I let his tongue convince me differently. In the times I have spoken to him he has shown no sila, no moral integrity, yet I allowed myself to believe he was on the Path. It is such a disgrace, both him and my lack of judgement.

And tonight I wasted a meditation on him because I could not control my anger. I just wish I had never met him - and yet I let him stay in my house two or three nights. What do I do now? I really don't want a scene, but I don't want to speak to him again. And I don't trust his reactions if I did have a scene. And it annoys the hell out of me that he is so socially accepted. He has a pleasant demeanour and nobody has criticised his activities with the ladyboy. Why? People are too polite. And this is Thailand. But even before this his behaviour was reprehensible, paying for someone - it is just that that is considered reasonable in Thailand. So people are tolerant because it is not PC to criticise him because of his sexual preference, and then in Thailand he can buy people - ladyboy or not. Completely morally bankrupt.

OK I've worked out what to do. I shall not speak to him again, and if he sits at a table I am at, I will get up and leave - and explain to others if they ask. If he asks I will tell him, so that places the onus on him as he has elicited a response; otherwise the actions I have said. Hopefully the anger will stop churning over my mind. Yet again my frustration at being unable to teach something spiritual has led me to act unwisely. I therefore have no right to do something until I learn to judge people better.

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Sex Sin and Zandtao (Part 1)
I have bought Brad Warner's Sex Sin and Zen, and am going to use it as an exploration of my own position, hence Sex Sin and Zandtao. He begins with a situation I was only too familiar with - what I think of as the rollercoaster of relationships.he has juxt been dumped and this is raising in him bad thoughts understandably. His life is being controlled by the actions of another, I find that difficult to accept. Even when the relationship is going well, the highs and lows are caused by reactions to another. Some might say "go with the flow", but is that the best way for me? It is necessary to consider a clear difference between love, passion and sex. In a relationship all three become suffused in our feelings for one person, and we often call that love. But is it love and can it only occur with one person? As we grow up it obviously does because that is our upbringing - society encourages marriage as does consumerism. But the question for me is do I need love, passion and sex? The need for sex is easiest. When sex was included with passion it was always a problem, I was seeking the highs. Now I am older the drive for sex is much less, and with it there has been a reduction in the passion. I look at the suais and stirring within me is the occasional masculine feeling of wanting to protect, of wanting to hold and cuddle and "have as mine", but then I think of the price of my freedom and they become only passing thoughts. This price of my freedom is personal and does not mean that for all relationships it is a matter of the woman imprisoning the man. It does for me, however. I am now doing what I want to do, meditation, study and beach, how could a woman improve that? There might be a magical dream, where I could go home and my cheewajit would be cooked and we could share the evening before going to bed. That might be nice except there would be tv-fighting. It might start like that, and then slowly her needs would start to impose, and my life would be changed. This is not a criticism, it is the reality of relationships - we both would have needs, and her needs are not my Path. So I am forced to not have sex (I won't pay for it), and the passion that is directed towards one person has to disappear.

But love is completely different. I love, it is part of Being. It is not misplaced love either, and this is a problem with relationships. Our love is focussed on one person when love is meant for all. Love is Being. Being in love with one person often opens our hearts to feel love for humanity, this is a good thing; but the way relationships go that love becomes directed on the woman and once relationships develop further it becomes more exclusively directed. Lives become interdependent, and soon most of your highs and lows are governed by how you feel together. As relationships progress further there becomes a stability hopefully, and this stability can be a platform to a journey. But that journey requires acceptance by the partner, and for many women such acceptance is difficult as Nature's role for them involves motherhood and the home. Love for Being - humanity - exists outside a relationship although relationships can light the spark.

When Brad wrote of his feelings about this woman in the intro, I just cringed not wanting any of it. Thank God I am older, and the sex drive is so much less even though it is still there and a problem.

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Pandit's lost it?
Has he lost the plot?

OK, I don't know him very well. We got close over Mahachula but over the last two years I have seen him once. And in my last trip I didn't make contact, so overall I have little to go on.

But the guy is always too busy, and that is always a bad sign. Samsara makes you busy, it is a way of stopping you from stepping back and reflecting. Now with all his meditation and training it is hard to see through him but he appears to be into the rushing around lifestyle - Bangkok Podcasts, tablets at food and so on. He seems bothered with facebook - shallow. And his extreme emotionalism over Holly seemed excessive - we all grieve differently though.

Here is the thread and the backup. I read it again and the inconsistencies in his position are phenomenal, and his expressed desire to see the other side did not include giving answers to many of my arguments. This is standard selective rationalism, and of course he can't as he doesn't have the experience.

I'm stuck writing now as I am angry. It makes me angry when people misuse their position. This is what Pandit does - I use Pandit as opposed to Bhante. When he is a monk I will address him with the appropriate courtesy, involving himself in politics does not merit any respect - especially when he bilges out the usual establishment indoctrination. He has been completely brainwashed by his journey into academia. Coming from cloisters and his closeted environment he gets his psychology degree. Throughout he wears the robe, and so is not treated the same way as usual people. Surely he must stand back and see that the world treats him differently, surely? But there is no evidence of this. When it comes to the disengaged world of dhamma teaching that is appropriate, but you cannot wander into the world wearing a uniform that says treat me differently, and then make judgements that that is the way the world treats people. When you look at his blog, even when there is outright disagreement people are always polite. This is not the way of the world. People do not argue with him.

And here comes the first issue. When he dabbles in the lay world I argue with him making his crass reactionary views; I do not hide from my views whether others think they are right or wrong. I believe they are rational because the views are all inclusive but for many the views will be extreme. Although I claim insight for them I will never attribute rational proof to them - except the proof that is insight. The rational world is so ludicrous in its selectivity and standards, it always seems remarkable that rationalists don't see thir own inconsistencies. Although I am always polite on his blog I do not accept his views of the lay world. I actually believe he has a problem with not being accepted, listened to. In the dhamma he has the right because he is a teacher, but in the lay world of politics he has no right to consider himself a teacher, where has he learnt?

It is so completely naive to believe Tony Blair. He accuses me of bias when I research with a predetermined viewpoint. "IT ISN'T RESEARCH". So irrespective of what I would have come up with he wasn't going to listen. He is prepared to read a man with blood on his hands, yet not listen to someone who has argued for peace all their life - without a drop anywhere near. Except by being born British. He is prepared to believe Blair because he quotes sources, and yet Blair used his government office to fund research into Iraq. He wanted to justify an invasion, how can that possibly be acceptable as proper academic research. If I research I am going to look for materials that support my point of view, I accept this. Blair did this and yet Pandit accepts it as academic. Pandit condemned my research befor I'd even done it, it is so laughable to consider that is a rational position. As always I am deeply frustrated when confronted with such ignorance, I need more detachment still.

It always angers me when I look at these arguments by rationalists, their arguments are so full of holes. Why are they so blind to these holes?

And where was the apology? He accused me of being a deceitful liar - spurious?, yet in the article on Iraq figures (or backup) the number 205,000 was used - more than the 200,000 I used. He can describe me as spurious, and yet give credibility to a man who took a country to war under the lie that there were WMD. Blair lies, he was proven deceitful, can you trust his book? And then Pandit calls me deceitful.

And then we have the education issue. The man is so egotistical but being a monk he has developed abilities not to show the worst aspects. We agreed there would be a lesson observation, I presume he thought that it would only show him as wonderful. As usual with observation reports I pointed out that they always show weakness, even for the most experienced teachers, but he should not be too concerned about that. Anyway he did not even acknowledge the observation report, and certainly did not respond. Why? Because he was not interested in changing? I suspect it is worse than that. Orange robes cannot be advised by lay people. Maybe they make exceptions for disrobed but they cannot learn from lay. And this was about teaching where I was experienced. So because I criticised academic process he made a jibe "(you were into Education ??", simply because I didn't quote sources. Fruustrating again. I can take the argument about academia so much further, but all he wants is a jibe and then move on. He is not willing to learn, and he is tooooooo busy. If I put on the robe would he try to learn? Or would it just be someone he could then teach? A disciple?

Sensible - "Well there endeth any sensible discussion." Is it sensible to have a discussion about which figures are accurate? Surely what is mor important is to determine underlyging truth - seeking insight. I do not know enough about Pandit's position on the dhamma, I am absolutely certain he does not have a sensible view of society. For me this thread proves that, although I doubt it does for him, his ego will not let him see through his indoctrination.

But suppose we took his attitude on rationales with regards to the dhamma. We all come from the Unconditioned, show me where, measure it, give me the sources. We are Unity. Look out the window the people are clearly distinct and different, you're talking crap. For Pandit where does the dhamma end and accepting rational judgement begin? I don't see there should ever be a distinction, take the fight for insight into academia. If sensibility implies rationality then what does that say of his teachers and so many more.

Whilst all of the above makes me angry it does not illustrate a man losing it. But what I fear is that his priesthood cannot allow questioning. Even early on he was unwilling to lose control of the reigns. I suspect that has worsened. He is now dabbling with tablets and commenting about how wonderful they are from when he was having lunch. Not in itself that much but it is a monk being attached to samsara. He has just been sucked into the wrong world, and is too egotistical about the Littlebang role. His church. Then there is all this podcasting, the Bangkok celebrity. Massaging that ego. So sad, he built something worthwhile. I would hope I am wrong about him but the reactions in this thread make me feel different. I am not surprised I felt shocked, someone stepping onto the wrong side. I am always looking for places to meet good people, I met some. Now that I have argued with the priest and the priest has behaved so badly towards me I cannot go to his church,

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Sex Sin and Zandtao (Part 2)
I have now reached Chapter 4 on celibacy, and have been disappointed so far. He is discussing the sexual act but so far draws the western distinction between the physical act and the emotional one. Neither has he looked at the sexual act in terms of the relationship, there appears to be an unwritten assumption that he sees the motivations for sexual activity between men and women as the same - fulfilling sexual desire. I had hoped for different. I certainly see it as different.

Spoke too soon. p31 he quotes Thich Nhat Hahn's interpretation of one of the 5 precepts:-

"Do not mistreat your body. Learn to handle it with respect. Do not look on your body as only an instrument. Preserve vital energies (sexual, breath, spirit) for the realisation of the Way. Sexual expression should not happen without love and commitment. In sexual relationships be aware of future suffering it may cause others. To preserve the happiness of others, respect the rights and commitment of others. Be fully aware of the responsibility of bringing new lives into the world. Meditate on the world in which you are bringing new beings."

This hits me in the face as saying no screwing without love and without hopefully a permanent relationship. Masturbating is wasting vital energy that could be used on the Path. Respect the other and think about what they want from the relationship - see my discussions about what women want, and don't have kids unless you can be responsible for them. Although he doesn't go into western decadence that could also be easily inferred from this. Brad, this does not appear to be your approach!! I note that in discussion with the San Francisco Zen Center this was transmuted. I am sure it was very complicated, previous scandals, mixed community and so on, but I find their compromise difficult. It stank more of the need to appease western sexual immorality than it did the Path. But it's up to them.

Thay's "Don't misuse sexuality" has a pop at me as well, I have no answer. What a waste!

p41 Brad says "And you're always going to form some level of attachment with someone you share bodily fluids with". This is important because it points to relationship and hurt, you can't fuck and go - or as players falsely describe it "love em and leave em".

Moving onto attachment. I can see a failing in Brad, he tries to answer all things and causes confusion. He does not define and set ground rules. I first saw this in the confusion he caused with professionalism and professional code of conduct, I've forgotten the word the problem got hung on - I remember it was the word professionalism as he saw it in part as earning money - music professional or not. Here is another one - ***tachment. Apparently there is a psychological condition involving detachment, he is writing about Buddhism - maybe he should write about the Buddhist thing?. But as he has admitted, amongst other reasons he writes for money; maybe it arises from that.

When he does talk about it properly he comes up with a good view of nonattachment akin to shapelessness. He says that we are one so we are fundamentally attached - although attached is not the correct word there. In fact the more I think of it attached is not a good word, it implies a collection of separate entities joined together, whereas in reality we are one entity with apparent separation. And this is why attachment is so important. Because we allow ourselves to become attached to self and views, we create that separation, no attachment - shapelessness and unity.

He talks about habits and ingrained feelings, these are not good for nonattachment. We don't want to reinvent the wheel every minute so some habits are worth having, but if we hide beheind habits and feelings this is not so good. There needs to be a constant questioning, not to reinvent the wheel, but so that we don't allow ourselves to be stagnant restrict ourselves by views and previous patterns of behaviour - habits. When the habit becomes a habit it is perhaps the time to take it off - monk joke.

On sex and sin in the west sex is a cultural habit. Boys grow up with the idea of bonking, this is an attachment culturally-driven; often it is not seen as this because men perceive themselves as being driven by this instinct. The issue is to detach oneself from what is socially expected of you in terms of this drive, and find what is important to you concerning it. Of course this is very hard to do, it is much easier to become detached from something you are not a part of. It is reasonable to get attached to Manchester United but how can anyone seriously be a Chelsea fan? This is a stupid comment to make, but are our attachments any less stupid? Of course we say no because we are attached to them. But is it the same when we consider attachment to samsara? Is it stupid to remain attached to samsara when the alternative is nirvana or enlightenment? Isn't that a big price to pay? Now that sounds very theoretical or dogmatic, but what if you go beyond the dogma and try to deeply understand what attached to samsara means to you, what enlightenment means then perhaps that feeling can mean more than dogma. It is worth considering.

Where does this analysis stand so far?

Thay's sexual energy saved for the Path.

What is the meaning of attached to Samsara and sexual desire?

In relationships people get hurt even if it is casual sex - Brad reasonably forms his relationship in the exchange of fluids. How does that hurt occur? When we form casual relationships is the motivation of both the same? Now this issue of sexual relationships has wide cultural dimensions, sexually how does the traditional behviour of rural Indian women compare with the behaviour of affluent young American women? But perhaps there are common themes. Motherhood and the home are certainly two although in western society both are not always embraced in the West. At the same time I believe that women are responsive, and this comes from the motherhood/home theme. Whatever is required to get what they want as mothers and the home they will do, however if nothing is required they will direct. This certainly seems true with western men where some are totally dominated yet for other men they respond differently ultimately aiming to get what they can in terms of motherhood and the home. Is it conceivable that the promiscuity of contemporary teenagers simply a response that will eventually lead to motherhood and home? The more I think the less I believe women are always conscious of how they respond, they simply react to what happens in the relationship. Where does all this lead in terms of trying not to hurt in relationships?

Keeping it saimple men are driven by sex; women, driven by motherhood, simply respond until they start ot get control in the home?

Brad's attitude to porn makes me feel very uncomfortable, but with porn I find it very difficult to be objective. "If you're too goddamned horny," jerk off, become "less sex crazed". This sounds good, it certainly reduces exploitative relationships ie relationships entered into for sex - primarily by men. Depite what many women say I find it difficult to believe that archetypal women can be comfortable with a "friends with benefits" relationship. But making that statement sounds more awful to me because I am making judgements about women. If I knew aware women I could listen to them but that is equally patronising.

OK, here is my position atht I know some women might begin to support. Women are fundamentally nurturing and relational, inckuded in this is procreation - the deeply-rooted need to have children. This procreational instinct exists in men but is less strong,having said that some fathers have a very striong drive. generaslising is so difficult. But in the West women are subjected to a media barrage that promotes promiscuity. As adolescents how are women supposed to discern the truth within this barrage?

Yet in other cultures, such as in Asia, women are comfortable (mostly) in remaining virgins until they marry - watch video about the western virgin movement. Brad talks much of sin and its hangover. Sin with regards to sex is not an issue I relate to now, I never really did. In fact if I considered porn more sinful it might help.

Brad tends to view porn as an issue only if it is obsessional - putting aside the criminal objections as presented on p83. He know much more about the porn industry than I do - being closer to the Suicide Girls, so that is heartening.

This brings up two questions, how much does the response to the porn images pervert your view of women, create kilesa, and how much of an obsession is created? These are very difficult to answer, paraphrasing Brad "Can someone into porn reach enlightenment?"

Looking over the chapter again I read the later that said "by definition stokes desires that usually can't and in some cases shouldn't be fulfilled". The misogynist in me immediately reacts to this. Porn clearly presents some images/movies of actions that shouldn't be fulfilled - specifically child pornography. It might also encourage experimentation, and whilst I don't encourage such experimentation some consider it reasonable in a loving relationship. But I draw attention to what she says "about desires that usually can't be fulfilled". What desires does she mean? Does she mean the unfulfilled desire for sex that many men have - inside or outside a relationship? Or is she talking about experimentation - 3-way etc? There is a big distinction between the two. For a significant percentage of my adult life I was sexually frustrated, whatever sexual images stimulated me leading to masturbation helped with that masturbation. On occasions there was frustration during a relationship, but usually it was between. Should that frustration have been left unattended?

I think we have a sexual difference here but I cannot prove it. The notion of adolescent girls locking themselves in their rooms and searching the internet for men with huge dongers to masturbate off to does not appear to me the same norm as boys rushing to their rooms to jerk off. The lady who wrote the letter might be suggesting that men should only fulfil in relationships, is this what she means by "stoking desires that can't be fulfilled"? When you look at adolescent emphasis concerning gender relationships there is perhaps more of a guide as to the importance of the sexual act. The majority of young girls are seeking a relationship. This is not so important to young boys who go out to score. Adolescent sex drives indicate to me a major difference in the sexes.

In a relationship women often close the gate when they want something, how often do men do this? In some cultures young girls are taught that they should fulfil men's desires; on occasions such fulfilment is a means of keeping the men faithful - as the man is spent. Women may look outside their relationship or marriage because they feel ignored, are beaten, bored, no money, but how often do women destroy a relationship just because they need sexual satisfaction. All of this discussion points to the importance of accepting sexual difference and trying to recognise such a difference in trying to work with relationships. It also points to a significant aspect of porn - it fulfils a need in men, not a need that should not be fulfilled but a need that is better fulfilled - frustrated men can behave irrationally. If a man is depressed, perhaps the first thing he tries is masturbation. If I am correct, for a woman to perceive the man's sexual needs the same as hers can lead to instability in the relationship. For a man to perceive the woman's sexual needs the same as his can also lead to imbalance. The different needs for sexual fulfilment whether through intercourse or masturbation reflect in different attitudes to porn, for women it might be an example of experimentation for a man it becomes a need. Consideration of these different attitudes is important. With this physical need comes desire, they are not the same. Quite clearly in men there is a sexual need, but sexual desire is far greater - certainly in my case. I fail miserably but I would like for my sexual practice only to be based on my need, this is where there is a significant danger with porn. Porn creates desire that is beyond need, as such it is addiction .... to samsara. But it doesn't stop there, this addiction can develop into a more demanding addiction. Brad talks about zen as reducing desire, that is a good thing. Whatever porn stimulates you, if any, it can only increase desire, and from that point of view it is not a zen practice. But if it is balanced to satiate a need, couldn't it then fit in with a zen practice?

But the obvious answer to all of this porn is why are your needs being satisfied in a relationship? And this is a big question. What people want from a relationship is such a difficult question to answer. Unfortunately I never found a relationship in which what I wanted was satisfied. I have no doubts at all that that is because what I wanted was unreasonable. Primarily I wanted a spiritual life, by this I mean that I was happy working on my journey. This often required solitude, did not require companionship and parties, and definitely did not involve children. For the women I have met I offered them nothing. Relationships would start because women saw me as a good person, but they ended in acrimony as there could not be a match in which both peoples' needs could be met. In such a case what remains, a relationship in which I lie to myself or the partner, or a life of solitude in which I need to come to terms with masturbation. Monks of course do this, but I have never discussed this with them. But at the same time monks are not exposed to the imagery that stimulates in daily life. And they are not exposed to porn, I presume.

No discussion of sex can possibly be complete without placing it in teh context of relationships, so far Brad has not addressed this. For me this is a weakness, but I could be rushing the assessment.

I have drawn the distinction between need and desire. Before I made the decision not to have relationships I met a lady who encouraged me to sleep with her. This occurred on two occasions, and neither time did I climax. I don't think she did although I did try to encourage her to. I met a friend at the time, and he said "I know that problem". Now this relationship was not fully fledged, and as such I could not expect it to satisfy me - or her, but my friend was in a stable relationship. Our desires exceeded our needs and we did not climax. Yet when I masturbate I reach a climax - however long it takes, often too long. I suspect that in a relationship there is more of a natiural balance between need and desire, if both partners are working at it. This is a problem with porn where desire far outweighs the need, and this is a major danger with porn. As it requires more and more stimulus to achieve a climax, perhaps you seek more and more extreme examples of porn.

Masturbation is never as stimulating as making love, or having sex - to me these last two are very different. Even just physically, sex for me was an experience of the whole body - more of the whole being, masturbation is only an experience of the sex organ and the mind. Over time this became a sacrifice I had to make, not willingly, but simply because a relationship was never practical. Because the whole body sexual need is only being partially satisfied, this can create an imbalance in desire, a desire to masturbate more than is the physical need. This desire can be over-stimulated by porn, and this excess stimuluas is a danger. This over-compensation leads to further problems, what is the relationship between life-force or chi or some other Asian description - jing? If you masturbate excessively, if you over-stimulate yourself with porn what does this do to your life force? What is the connection between life force and health? How much does masturbation affect your health? This question also applies in relationships but usually to a lesser extent. If people have grown together in marriage then hopefully their sexual needs are balanced within the marriage. But what if one partner is much older than the other, old-young relationships. It would be harder for such to achieve sexual balance. But then enters viagra. Personally I think viagra is very dangerous. If you cannot keep an erection then should you be having sex? If the sex is not natural then how much damage does it do to your health - by the same reasoning as excessive masturbation?

However your sexual drive is satisfied it can never be seen independent of relationships. It seems to me that if you have sex in a relationship that has matured with time then that sexual release is more natural and healthy. Outside a long marriage sexual satisfaction can present health problems either with excessive masturbation or the need to chemically stimulate your system.

And then there is Thay's quote in which he talks of preserving vital energies for the Way. In a relationship with sexual balance such energies are less likely to be misused, compared with excessive masturbation or the use of viagra. If the Way is such a priority that one can control the desires and only limit sexual fulfilment to need, effectively not being addicted to samsara, then there is balance. In a mature relationship balance might work towards the Way if it is mutually agreed, for me that might was never a possibility.

Brad began discussing women in religion. Historically women have been oppressed by religion, and he condemns that. He then attacked Theravada for what happened to Ajaan Brahm and the ordained nuns. He was rather blaze about saying that if he were in a religion that was blatantly sexist he would withdraw. If so many Theravada Buddhist women accept it, who is he to demand withdrawal for someone else's religion? He does make a point about the pressures of powerful Thai money, Thai Buddhism needs to extricate itself from such pressures.

He concludes the chapter by effectively saying equality is important but vive la difference. Much that I feel is lacking in this book is about the difference, and he has not addressed that. Respect equally individual differences is a better approach for me, respect each others' needs. He appears to have embraced all that the feminist movement demanded but has not looked beyond that.

"There's nothing inherently wrong in looking at naked people. [p113]" What does he mean by this? This question revolves around a holistic notion of sexuality. Let me try to convey what I mean. When I was teaching my favourites were always particular girls. In this climate of paedophilia this is a dangerous statement to make. But I am absolutely 100% certain that this favouritism had nothing to do with the physical body of the girls. It was usually younger girls of 12/13 who I found cute. As the girls grew up into their mid and late teens this cuteness went as they became socialised talked incessantly of boys make-up and usual teenage crap. At the same time this socialisation turned intelligent people into family-oriented unit seekers. I am sure these girls knew I liked them but I can't ever remember any sense of response from them, either attraction or revulsion; after all we rarely question a ather's love or his daughter. And it is even rarer for that love to become physical - so many things have got to go wrong for that to happen. So whilst the attraction was clearly created by something associated with gender it was not to do woth physcial form. As a teacher you need to develop an ability to switch off from any signals concerning the physical form. At the same time the girl students need to know that it is inappropriate for them to behave suggestively towards the teacher, and of course most do.

I started with this to try to get at the notion that attraction between the sexes is not just physical, it is not just whether a girl is sexy - I have taught many students who were clearly beautiful although uniform prevented them from accentuating that beauty sexually - a positive aspect of wearing a uniform as being sexy is not an integral part of the learning process. And anything at all sexuallly provocative was normally directed to male peers quite appropriately. A woman's body can be viewed in an unresponsive way with clothes on, can that also be done when a woman wears no clothes? I was at a party once when I was in a sexually-fulfilling relationship. We were sat on the floor and I was talking in a group one of whom was this woman who was wearing a very short skirt. Because of sitting on the floor it had hitched up "revealing a lot". I was a bit drunk so I commented, and she said that it was my problem and not hers. My partner at the time was working but if I had any sexual urges I would much rather have been with her. Thai women wear short shorts, and I teach some. They prefer to sit on the floor in lotus posture and this can be quite revealing. Occasionally they sit with a cushion resting on their laps revealing less. In quieter moments I have caught my mind wandering and bring it back, my mind never wandered when I taught young women who were not revealing anything. In other words some form of nudity or revelation by women can bring about a sexual response. Brad has specifically said that zen, particularly zazen, helps us reduce desire, and that this is a good thing. How can viewing naked ladies reduce desire? In the same chapter he was speaking of strippers. Not only are these women in various forms of undress they are specifically trying to stimulate desire. Now what about the stripper friend who then proceeded to give Brad a lapdance, it left a lasting impression. What kind of reduction of desire occurred then?

Nakedness of women and desire in men are often cause and effect, if one objective of the Path could be described as reduction of desire, then for men putting themselves in situations where desire is naturally going to be stimulated cannot be a good thing. This is a principle which is applied in the Muslim religion although to differing degrees. They recognise the cause and effect of the woman's body on man's desire, and the more extreme describe western societies as decadent for the prevalence of such stimuli. Brad associates this with sin, need it be so? Could it be the cause and effect of desire that they are objecting to?

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leech
Last Monday a very irritating situation happened, and it has led me to much consternation. I haven't stopped thinking about it.

First of all the leech is an affable bum. He appeared at the beach two years ago, and I watched as he ingratiated his way into everyone's favour so that he could drink. Then the restaurant family gave him a place to stay, and two meals a day. now they don't like him but their dana - tambuun? - is sufficient for them. Now I have spoken with him many times. He is intellectual and appears quite interested although quite clearly nothing of what I say has registered with him. Over the two years I have spoken less and less with him as it is a waste of wind.

I don't believe in giving food and money to bums. I prefer to give to children but if I were going to give to bums it wold be to a monastery who looks after them. However just because of who I am I have occasioanlly offered him things, and on most occasions he has not bothered - even when I have gone out of my way. This has irritated me, he is so ungrateful. And when I talk of gratitude towards the Thai family, he doesn't see it and only agrees with me because that is the nature of a leech - attach if it gets you blood.

Now to the incident. He has befriended a dog - as have a number of Farangs. This dog has been rejected by its family, and has sought succour with the Farangs. He is soppy and untrained - as opposed to the Thai way of untrained, and it is this untrained soppiness that led to the incident. The dog is allowed in its own family territory even though the family rejects it. But last Monday it followed the leech to another beach - a beach controlled by three other good dogs. It had got on the beach before the three dogs realised but when the leech tried to return to his bungalow the three dogs attacked soppy. I heard the dog whelp and when I arrived at the beach the leech was standing between the three dogs and soppy holding a long pole of driftwood.

With some of the above info the leech also told me that soppy was too scared to move. Weighing things up - I couldn't control the three dogs but I didn't think they would attack me, so I picked up soppy to carry him back to his territory. I walked in the sea with the leech between soppy and I and the three dogs, but then when I walked towards the path to get to its territory I found the three dogs around me. The largest Jumbo would likely bite soppy and I would be in the middle of it. I called to the leech to hit the dogs and he refused, he refused to carry the dog either - I am guessing that although the leech looks a mess this dog was too unclean for him to carry.

I assessed that he had created the problem by bringing the dog with him but was unable to solve it. And when I tried to solve it he was unwilling to work with me - possibly because he was unwilling to hit the dogs. Intellectual? Frightened? Whatever? But he didn't tell me. But what was clear was that he was willing to let me get in the middle of fighting dogs to solve his problem - a typical leech's lack of personal responsibility. I have seen this in him before - lack of gratitude, so I immediately put soppy back in the sea behind the leech, and left him. I was actually cleaning the beach of plastic - self-plug, so was around him for a while and he just stood there. He could have asked something of me, he could have left the dog, but being a leech he did nothing and waited for something to happen. In my mind I refused to help, he needed to learn gratitude and personal responsibility. After an hours or so I returned to the beach to find a Thai whose house adjoins the beach scaring off the dogs - presumably with stones. So if the leech did not believe in violence he had not resolved the situation without violence. I couldn't throw stones at those dogs, they were too good, and anyway my solution would have worked fine if the leech had been willing to put himself between Jumbo and me.

But this whole scenario has been niggling me, and I know I have been trying to seek a clear position. I am unhappy because maybe the Thais think I lack compassion towards the leech - who after all is a human being even though he is a pollutant. Despite never giving him food or drink I have let this leech attach to me latch onto me , and observing Thais would maybe have seen that he was some sort of friend. Because they respect my teaching maybe this gives the leech some kudos. So even though I don't give him money I give him some respectability. This is not acceptable. This leech, and other leeches, must not have any respectability, for them to get out of their situation they somehow must regain their ability to be human, and claiming some sort of respectability will never do that.

In future I will never countenance the leech. I have to show him that I do not welcome him, nor do I want him to stay there. Other people at the beach call him Cheap Charlie, I always used his name, now I will just call him leech. I will not speak with him again, and will make it clear that he will not sit at the same table as me. I will have to address this issue with him if it means I have to get up - I will not have this leech cramp my style.

As a leech he of course is on dicey ground. The Thai family who feed him do not like him. And of course he is in the country without a visa. And he is a crook because he stayed at a guest house in Trat for a month without paying - and I am certain the Thai family don't know this. It might affect whether they continue to feed him if they knew he had stolen from Thai people.

I have resolved that I will never allow any of these leeches to get that close to me again - and leech the respect I have earned.

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