Thursday, May 5, 2016

On Breaking Free

Everybody wants freedom as far as talking is concerned, but nobody really is free and nobody really wants to be free, because freedom brings responsibility. (Osho)

He revealed his sex addiction to a group of other afflicted, and while they had already heard a lot of sick stuff that day, his story was really a bit out there. Every other Friday, give or take, a dark cloud descended on him. He felt it around noon and by 2 pm there was no turning back. He would leave work early and would drive around aimlessly until he would find a home that looks vulnerable for entry. He slips in and hides somewhere in a closet, enjoying to be just a few feet away from the woman of the house, and while she does her housework not suspecting anything, he would masturbate watching her from the closet. After his orgasmic explosion the dark cloud would leave him. He would slip out of the house as quickly as he came, returning back to his "normal" life until the next craving would hit him.

I read this story in a book on sexual addictions and remember it so well because the addict described a trance that was literally descending on him. There was a moment when a dark cloud would engulf him, and he saw it coming. He might have had a moment of freedom in this, but once a line was crossed, there was simply no going back. He would only gain his old consciousness again after the crime of passion was committed. 

What exactly causes that dark cloud? Is it the battle of good and evil? Is it perhaps that some inner conflicts become so overwhelming that the system just snaps and a rebelling force is coming to the fore that does some nasty things? Are there old wounds that need facing, that simply pop to the surface from time to time? And specifically for us spiritual travelers, could it be that sometimes we are simply trying too hard to do what we perceive to be the "right" thing by God, only to find that we are abusing our authentic needs for so long that on a dark night of the soul all the frustration pops to the surface?

While an addiction is a degree of helplessness that few of us have experienced that way, most of us will know what a descending dark cloud is all about. Every Friday night when I come home a voice in my head whispers, "You deserve a little peace of mind. Go and open that bottle of wine and enjoy being carefree and merry". If I don't have wine in the house, the feeling of emptiness and alienation simply searches for new outlets. So I have more pizza instead, munching away to somehow make the feeling of alienation go away.

A spiritual path is a decision to embrace freedom, to be responsible for every step along the WAY. If you just say that a spiritual path must mean that you do everything that is proper by some holy book then you aren't free either. True freedom has to be understood moment by moment. We don't need to worry though, the WAY will make our chains unmistakably clear to us. And unfortunately it is our job to put them aside, no one can do that for us. Osho's remarks ring true. In some way or another, we all have been robotic in some areas of our lives. Yet, freedom is exactly what we spiritual travelers have signed up for. As they say in New Hampshire, "live free or die".

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