Hi dhammapal, all,
This might be of assistance:
I take from this that we should find skilful means
to overcome lust, rather than just willpower. Of course some willpower is needed, but willpower alone would be a very hard and painful route to take. Giving up sex pleasure is always going to be tough, but there's no reason to make it tougher than necessary. If we can find ways to smooth the journey, we will have a greater chance of success, and less chance of a relapse into old patterns.
Something else that came to mind (and this one is my own idea, not
the Venerable Ajahn's!) is that possibly real-life female companionship could help, too. Of course I'm not
advocating seeking out a girlfriend if you were aiming at complete brahmacariya, no
; but maybe exploring the idea that it would be a healthier alternative
to porn addiction is worth thinking about, if like most people, you wish to give up porn, but might not be ready to give up sex life totally. Companionship doesn't have to mean sex per se, anyway. It can be on many levels. It could be as innocent as just friendship, even. I just thought that it might also help to lift the mind out of the temptation to indulge in the 'quick-fix, instant gratification' allure of porn, which is of course unrealistic and out of step with what sex life would involve in the real world (such as affection, respect etc), if one were
to engage in it (according to the lay precepts, of course). Just another idea that might be of assistance.
(NB: I was not implying that you have
an addiction to porn, but whether we like it or not, online porn is highly addictive,
those who produce it are aware of this and actually design it in a way that increases
the addictiveness, and I am puzzled as to how some people (not from this forum) can regard it as harmless, or that one could somehow use it casually and not have one's usage increase over time. It is like a drug, and the addictive chemicals are produced in the brain itself - we become our very own drug dealer!)