Saturday, April 11, 2015

Bad News

This time, it is getting stronger.  I craved again three times for this week.  Not good.  I stayed up late until 2 in the morning.  And I missed my exercises.

It is a good lesson for me.  I neglected my yoga and some other things that I should be doing. 

So, I start again. 

Friday, March 27, 2015

I Have A Confession to Make

Last night, I watched porn again.  I missed a favorite actress of mine.  And I got back from a party with friends and I was unhappy.  I did not masturbate while watching.  Nonetheless, I failed.

What now?

Back to start.  Find out where I made a mistake.  Try again.

And this time, get a good night sleep.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Loving Yourself

I have just installed a Kundalini app on my phone.  I have been practicing the Self-Love Yoga Set for around a week now.  And you know what?

Loving yourself is hard.

In this type of yoga, you have to raise your arms for several minutes.  Experiences vary, but in my first two minutes, my mind would typically tell me to stop.  This is too hard.  You cannot do it.  Give up.  Later on, it gives me flashbacks of people I loathed.  That person is greedy and a hypocrite.  Why are you not doing anything?  Then it reminds me of the stupid mistakes I did.  You did what?  You almost had her.  You will never change.  Please die.

But as I progress, the voice in me begins to change.  You can do it.  But next time, do warm up firsts.  Only few minutes more.  Sooner, more voices call for positive changes.  He said that to YOU?  Forget it.  You are better than him.  Let her go.  Not worth your time.  You will find someone better.  
And it goes on and on until the final stretch.  I also enjoy small pockets of silence.  And they are the most pleasurable.

Can a person fall back into his vices if he is at peace with himself?  I am still far from being "enlightened" so to speak.  I still get mad at others and at myself.  Even though I am no longer watching pornography, the images come back to me when I find myself sleeping late at night.

So how do I blank them out?  I cannot, at least not yet.  With awareness and meditation, I come back little by little to my joyful self and get back to sleep.  But sometimes, I still end up jacking with those images in my mind.  So what to do then?  Well, I forgive myself.  And go back to meditating.

Learn from the past but do not dwell in them.  When you forgive yourself, growth comes naturally.  And you would no longer need crutches like porn to get by.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

My Vision for this Blog

I would soon be replacing this blog with a new one called The Heart Tweakers.  I find the initial title quite limited and pretty much sounds taboo.

I like to create a community where members would support each other in breaking their own undesirable habits and create good ones.  We would share and apply methods that are useful, simple, and compassionate to self and others.  So far, I find meditation and hypnosis quite effective in curbing my habit.  But I am open to other ideas.  In fact, I did not use either when I decided to quit on my porn habit and somehow I succeeded - at least for half a year.

As for religion and culture, I believe that people are different and have needs unique to others.  I intend this blog to be secular, but I do not wish to keep it away from some basic principles of the Scriptures.  Some people changed for the better through the Gospels.  Others through Zen techniques.  Arguing which one is right or wrong is a waste of time.

Stay tuned for more entries at

Sunday, March 1, 2015

First Five Steps to Freedom

1.  The first step is to get rid of all pornographic materials in your house.  If you had your first exposure on the Internet, setting up a reliable filter for your browser is highly recommended.  You need to keep yourself from craving newer and newer material every night.

2.  Read up "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg and "The Willpower Instinct" by Kelly Mcgonigal.  They are two wonderful books that have helped me curb my addiction.  They are easy to read and offer great tools to help you succeed not only in getting rid of pornography, but in overcoming other habits such as smoking and binge eating.  I am not a smoker but I binge sometimes, which is another personal dragon to slay.

3.  You can use the "Urge - Response - Reward" model.  I got this from the books above.  When you feel the urge to watch pornography, can you do something other than giving in?  A workout routine perhaps?  Or would you prefer meditation, prayer, or reading?

And instead of promising to God that you get rid of pornography forever, you can simply ask your brain to wait for another few minutes whenever the urge kicks in.  And when it comes back again, ask for another few minutes until the urge subsides.  I got this technique from Mcgonigal and it works like a charm.  It would take some degree of willpower exercise.  You may fail a lot but simply start over and try again.  But this is the most powerful technique that works best for me.

And when you overcome the urge, what kind of reward would you like to have?  You can treat yourself to a prize better than the pleasure of jacking off to porn.  Perhaps you can go to a restaurant you have not tried before, or buy a concert ticket of your favorite band.  For some people, overcoming is already a reward by itself.

4.  Another powerful technique is Hypnosis.  You can use the book "Instant Self-Hypnosis" by Forbes Robbins Blair.  I love to work on hypnosis and it has given me willpower in pursuing my personal goals.

But it does not work for everyone because getting into trance may vary from person to person.  You may need a therapist if you feel that you are not getting any results.

5.  Keep yourself healthy.  Sleeping early, spending more time exercising and eating a healthful diet would increase your willpower.  An active person would have an easier time fending off the urge than an Internet bum could do so.

Nowadays, I run and do yoga at least 5 times a week.  I use my phone to surf the Internet and I am not browsing for porn any more.  But a few years ago, I spent my time on the Internet up to 2 in the morning surfing for porn.  And I could be be up at 5 in the morning.  I was so spent I had no energy to report for work.

Give yourself forty (40) days to see for yourself if it works for you.  When you find yourself getting an erection in the morning, it is a good sign that the technique is working.  As for masturbation, although I do not see it necessarily wrong, try not to give in for at least forty days.  I have seen some programs that can go as far as no PMO (porn, masturbation, orgasm) for 100 days.  Perhaps it would work but I find it too difficult for me.  

Modify step three if it does not work for you.  The steps may not also work if you are under huge stress.  Keep yourself relaxed and ask friends for help.  You can do it.  We can break free.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Welcome! And what is "Zend"?

If you are struggling to kick the porn habit, I have good news for you.

You can break free.

Zen focuses on simplicity, inner wisdom, and un-attachment.  I am not a Buddhist (at least not yet :p).  In fact I am a Christian.   But listening to sermons and coercions had done little for me.  Little by little, I found the materials I needed to produce lasting results in breaking free.  So I opened this blog to offer some tools and readings that have been helpful for me in getting rid of this habit.

I have been indulging in pornography ever since I was a teenager.  As an adult in my early thirties, I first decided to get rid of the habit last year of June 12, our country's Independence Day.  I managed not to watch pornography for six months.  But I fell into the habit again during the Christmas season (I know, our Lords birthday, and it was embarrassing).  So I bounced back and I have not touched porn as of this writing.

I put together "Zen" and "End" to remind ourselves that bad habits are not permanent.  And also, we overcome with mindfulness and with compassion to ourselves.  When I become more aware of the urge to peek, I look into alternative steps in addressing the habit.  I could drink more water, or I let in a deep breath, or I just sleep it off.  Sometimes, the urge wanes off when I pee.  No matter how strong it is, it does not last for a long time.  When I fail, I look back at my mistakes and see how I can improve my willpower.  Spending time on guilt does not solve the problem.  In fact, guilt makes you give up because you entertain negative thoughts about yourself.  And you would think that you cannot change at all for the better.  

We are often taught that watching pornography is a sin.  You can see that in Matthew 5:27-28*.  So basically, when we jack off to an actress, we have committed adultery with her though she lives miles and miles away from us and she does not know us at all.  How wicked we are!  Since we are already adulterers, might as well finish the deed and ask for forgiveness later.  Makes sense?  But we do not get lasting results at all.  We spend late nights back at the screen and watch more and more depraved material.  We beat ourselves and beg for forgiveness to God again and the cycle goes on and on.

I may appear to challenge dogma.  But self-flagellation does not make you any holier.  Change is hard to take place when we see ourselves as broken individuals.  When we see ourselves as adulterers, how do our habits compare to those who have no qualms viewing porn?

So may I offer another paradigm?  Instead of seeing ourselves as sinners, would it be more useful if we see ourselves as an apprentice who is inching closer and closer to finally break free?  An apprentice who fails in a task would practice it again and again until he perfects it.  And then he is given more difficult tasks to complete.  And he performs them again and again as they propel him towards the path to Mastery.

Yes, this path is not easy.  But leave the past behind.  Leave the guilt behind.  And we as grasshoppers will jump far and high.

My blog entries appear once a week or every two weeks.  But I could post some more depending on the topic.  First recommended reading is Charles Duhigg's "The Power of Habit".

*27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart."
New International Version (NIV)