Saturday, September 12, 2015

Forbidden Fruit

“There is a charm about the forbidden that makes it unspeakably desirable.” 
― Mark Twain

What is it about the greatest story ever told that makes it so relevant? The apple offered by the attractive woman in the middle of the garden that supposedly started humanity's downfall? There is no telling. Sometimes going against the norm is in fact part of the Way. Standing up to authority and fear can allow you to express repressed soul longings and help you overcome self-imposed limits. But then, often these flings simply catapult you further away from Home, and are nothing but ego tantrums disguised as cries for novelty, creativity and freedom. Only you can know what is part of the Way and what not.

Robert Stoeller, MD once coined the expression, "the thrill to sin". So true! Take adultery as one example: it can be  the desire to be naughty, to push the boundaries a little, just to feel alive again by doing something society frowns on. But then, maybe your desire to have a lover is an authentic need that needs to be filled in you; perhaps your desire to "cheat" is nothing but the final nail in the coffin of a love-less marriage that would have broken up anyway. Who can say but you! But if you catch yourself having one affair after the other, chances are that love has very little to do with it - it is "thrill to sin" that keeps you looking for new adventures.

Sexual perversions can also send you on a mistaken pleasure trip. If you find yourself pushing the boundaries of sexual imagination further and further away from what other people consider a normal expression of physical love, you are likely caught in the "thrill to sin" spiral that ends up being addictive. Neurologically, what happens in your brain is the same as when you abuse alcohol or other drugs; an adrenaline rush is set into motion by doing the extreme, and you need more and more stimulus to get the same bang for your sexual pleasure trip, so to speak. Any addiction is a journey towards bondage and is therefore in opposition to the Way. Freedom of all ego cravings is where a spiritual path leads you instead.

To go back to the Garden of Eden story, this supposed "fall of humanity" act was really all about our sudden ability to create something separate from the Union of Oneness. So what, we developed an ego and got temporarily blinded and confused. But what we gained instead was the ability to perceive the Universe and God's creations as an individual identity. Yes, we can go back to this blessed state of Oneness every moment; the Way stretches out Her arms to receive us, and all we have to do is to dance with Her. Once we fall in love with the "thrill to live", the thrill to sin suddenly looks and feels a little stale. Fact of the matter is, once the Way has gotten a hold of us, every moment becomes a magic state of "At-One-ness". 

Go ahead, have a taste of the delicious apple; nothing bad is going to happen to you, unless of course, you let go of the Way.

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