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Lesson 272 - Addiction, Abusive Conduct, Tough Love
and Yoga (Audio)
Date: Sun Jul 31, 2005 12:20 pm
New Visitors: It is recommended you read from the beginning of the archive, as previous
lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "Why
Q: I have been reading your lessons for 3 months now and practicing. If I
may, I have a question/dilemma for you:
I am a woman in love and involved for several years with a man who, while
intelligent, attractive, vital, and interested in self/soul work can be
explosive and emotionally abusive in our relationship.
Sadly, he is also heavily addicted to marijuana (smoking pot is a 20 year
daily habit and he becomes very agitated if he runs out), cigarettes (a pack
a day), sugar, and most damaging to our connection, hard core pornography
that is very degrading to women.
The pornography addiction has brought with it a stream of deception, and
broken promises, emotional abuse and sexual abandonment. It has been very
wounding. While I have been blessed with a physically attractive outside,
and am sexually vital, my self-esteem has been damaged and my joy has been
difficult to hold onto. Still, my constant comfort is that I have always
been most interested in developing my spiritual awareness and a deep and
empathic understanding for my fellow students of life and the path toward
higher love. But lately ... I have found myself in despair of many kinds.
I have read nearly 40 of your posted lessons over the last 3 months
(interestingly enough, I was made aware of this site through my boyfriend
who has been enthralled with these types of practices and lessons for many
years and, is recently practicing meditation, and now urine therapy and
devours your lessons). I have found the information interesting, healing and
for the most part easy to dovetail into my love for Christ. I am praying
that is brings a healing and evolution not just for me, but for him as well
and for our couplehood.
I have tried through prayer, serenity exercises, meditation and patience to
create a safe place for love and forgiveness. For growth and healing. It has
helped me through the more difficult times. Yet lately, I feel weighed down
with overwhelming sadness and apathy when doing my prayer, meditation and
My concern is that pornography, addiction and deception continue to be such
a strong undercurrent in this relationship that I fear this may never
change. Fear. A difficult obstacle when one has been subject to on-going
emotional torment in a love relationship.
Thank you for hearing my heart. I was wondering if you might offer some
words of wisdom on this topic for women like me who are in love and are
seekers of truth and light and healing, but find ourselves weighted down,
wounded and afraid?
With warm appreciation...
A: Thank you for your kind note and sharing. I am happy you are finding the
AYP lessons to be helpful. I also have a Christian background going way
back. In fact, the new novel, "The Secrets of Wilder," presents the same
practices (minus the Sanskrit terminology) in a Christian-oriented American
The things you have going on there with your boyfriend are a complex
situation to say the least. Addictive behavior and abusive conduct are
usually based on insecurities rooted in the past, and it can overflow onto
others, especially loved ones. The web of dysfunctional relationships and
behaviors tends to perpetuate itself. But the cycle can be broken. It takes
mutual understanding and commitment to do it. For this to happen there must
be communication, followed by action.
Have you and he discussed these matters? If so, it should be clear enough
that something is out of sorts which can be addressed. If your boyfriend is
into AYP, he has self-improvement in his awareness. This is very good.
However, substance abuse and addictions are not in support of
self-improvement and spiritual transformation. They will retard it to an
extent that yoga practices will not be able to overcome. If we are cleaning
the window of our nervous system with yoga practices it is highly
unproductive to be throwing dirt on the window faster than yoga can clean it
off. So, some basic attention in the area of personal conduct is essential
to make a go of it.
If there are addictions, 12-step programs are highly recommended to deal
with them. There is information in the AYP
links section under
"Twelve Step Programs." The 12
Step Cyber Cafe is
a good place to start. Applications of the 12-step program are listed there
for every kind of obsessive/addictive behavior imaginable. Of course, there
has to be a recognition of the situation and a level of commitment by the
individual before any of this can be productively pursued.
Regarding your role in this, if you love your boyfriend, the best thing you
can do is make your feelings known with firmness, and be willing to walk
away at some point if there cannot be a commitment to deal with it. Some of
us are inclined to be victims in abusive relationships, and this can be as
destructive as the abusive conduct itself. Giving in to fear is a direct
cause of abuse. If someone knows that their abusive conduct will not be
tolerated, it can have a big effect on breaking the cycle. It isn't easy,
but it is a fact that the best love can sometimes be very tough love. So,
this is a test and an opportunity for you to become more in charge of your
own destiny, and be a primary source of betterment for the one you love. You
do have the power. Everything happens for a reason.
Once you find a balance in external relationships, then deep yoga can
flourish. It is no doubt working already in many hidden ways. Rising inner
silence is the great purifier and equalizer. If there is deep meditation
going on, then many other things will get addressed in one way or another.
I wish you all success on your chosen spiritual path. Enjoy!
The guru is in you.
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