E L B O W
Elbow: As Much Light As Possible

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

As Much Light As Possible

In yesterday's post I mentioned "new developments" that have caused my gears to shift in a new direction. Granted, it seems like the winds of change are always at my door, as I will agree with most of you that I am "all over the place," but being "all over the place" gives me greater satisfaction then let's say a proverbial and endless rut that I can't get out of. And then on the other hand, being so inconsistently stuck could be considered an endless rut to some people, so I guess it all depends on how you look at it.

Basically I have started to make some choices for myself. I decided that in order for me to get to a better place, I had to start making some decisions.

I truly can't say that I know what life's purpose is. I am sure that there are as many answers as there are people. And who's to say that for one person there is a different purpose than for another? What I need to do is determine what my earth existence is to be.

But for now, in my search for meaning and truth I have come across some truths that I feel are very profound. I have come to accept an awareness of the First Noble truth of Buddhism, that all life is suffering, and that there is no view of a way out beyond the suffering.

For me, life is not about seeing beauty, and it simply isn't about just being who you are. Life is not about living for the moment, life is about controlling appetites and toxic behavior so as to live with as much light as possible.

By choosing to focus on the spiritual, the love, and commitment, then I will at a much greater course, be able to confront my anxiety, guilt and the concept of death for the purpose of gaining a true sense of self.

I am going to stop there. I have a lot more I want to say, but it's a lot to digest. Ultimately what I want to say is that what we do and what we focus on will ultimately be who we end up. I want to surround myself with things that don't drive me to lust, or that don't cause me to think about the physical and carnal. I just want to be in control of myself, and not be controlled by my passions.

4 Comments:

Anonymous ron said...

Although the Buddha did teach that suffering is inherent in life, he also taught that there can be an end of suffering and that there is a path to achieve it, in the third and fourth noble truths.

The only reason for realizing that there is suffering is so that we can use this precious life to move in the direction of our own happiness, which according to Buddhism is the purpose of our life. And that's an experiential journey, not a conceptual one based on our ever changing thoughts, feelings and emotions.

I think you're underestimating yourself if you think that your attraction to men is merely physical. You've described at least one prior relationship with a man that clearly had other, much deeper connections. Being married, you probably experience your attraction to men as physical because you don't consider yourself to be in a position to do anything about a relationship, sexual or otherwise, with another man, so it's safer to view it as "lust." Also, I doubt you would find lust missing, if only you weren't gay. It's pretty safe to say that straight men do the same thing.

I enjoy your blog very much and wish you blessings on your journey.

2:29 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

I think the conlusions you are reaching seem overarching and profound. Your thoughts seem noble and good, and I hope you continue to find catharsis and resolution to the dissonance that life sometimes proffers.

3:15 PM  
Blogger Dave Walter said...

Elbow,

As I said in my previous comment, I think you're quilting a path. I think that your not knowing what the right path is to pursue, you are headed down a path that you are constructing as you go along, assembling it with whatever seems fitting at the moment.

The result is that the path taken will resemble a quilt in that it reflects a patchwork of experiences, beliefs, emotions and attitudes that fit together in a pattern, but do not represent a unified whole. In addition, one side of the path will reflect your devotion to your wife and your marriage, while the other side will reflect your homosexuality. The layer in between will be the equivalent of a soft filling, i.e., the opposite of a solid foundation.

You say that "life is about controlling appetites and toxic behavior so as to live with as much light as possible." I agree with Ron on this matter. You are psychologically repressed when it comes to your gayness. Your lustful desires for other man are not appetites that need to be controlled; they are needs that, unfulfilled for so long, are causing you to be more obsessed with gay sexual attraction that you would be if you were better-adjusted with regard to your sexuality.

You may look at men as sex objects now. But if you were to come out, start socializing with gay men, and seriously date, you would discover that the carnal is secondary to love.

You could have a love for a man that is every bit as intense at the love you have for your wife.

I'm glad to hear that you love your wife so much, and it may well be that you'll be able to stay in your marriage for a very long time, if not until death does its parting. But from what you've written in the past, I've gotten the distinct impression that being authentic and being your gay self are important to you. My concern is that, if you stay with your wife while constantly struggling with your homosexuality, you'll eventually reach the point that you can't struggle anymore -- and you'll come out.

Several other of your comments lead me to believe that you're bargaining with yourself, telling yourself that you can be happy and achieve fulfillment as long as you rein in or modify attitudes and beliefs that you consider to be standing in your way.

I also get the impression that you just want to be done with the worst of the turmoil; that you're finding it easier adopt a set of compromises and a new beliefs system -- anything to avoid having to make the BIG decision.

I really think you need to have a therapist guiding you through this period of your life. It may well be that you'll end up staying with your wife. But I wonder how smoothly your marriage can go as long as your gay issues are not appropriately addressed and resolved.

4:44 AM  
Blogger Beck said...

"I just want to be in control of myself, and not be controlled by my passions"...

I do, too. But my experience has been that even as much as I "stay in control" and "do what is right", etc, there are those times when passions take control. Lust, carnal desires, even love of and with another man move to the center stage - even if I don't want them to.

I feel like DW is speaking to me as much as to you. That is why I'm finally seeking therapy - to understand this passion.

I'm excited for your new outlook, your positive attitude, and your feeling of control. I truly am!

But, what happens the next time you're walking home from Church with your wife and a really great lookin' guy is making serious eye-contact with you and you start unraveling inside? What if your friend comes back and wants to be held in your arms and you want so much to be held in his? Is this the suffering you're talking about?

6:11 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home