E-Mail Subject: The main bite of the serpent
 
 
  Breaking Free chizuk #1832  
 
 
In Today's Issue
   
Announcements: 6th Annual GYE Convention
Image of the Day
Text: 10 toxic side effects of pornography use
Torah: This is it. No more.
Chizuk: The main bite of the serpent
 
 
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Announcements
 
6th Annual GYE Convention
 

Dear GYE Members,

You're invited to join GYE's 6th annual convention in Jerusalem, which will take place be"h this Wednesday evening, March 14th.

This year's convention will feature:

  • Eitan Ekstein, CEO of Retorno
  • Dr. Tamir Leon, Anthropologist
  • Beni Yaakov, Recovery Program Consultant and Facilitator
  • Rabbi Dr. Abraham Twerski (hopefully)

Music by Pini Einhorn, King of the Kumzitz!

We will also be announcing the launch of a historic new worldwide initiative!

For details and sign-up, see the convention homepage at kenes.co

Note: Speeches will be in Hebrew (no translation).

Image of the Day
 
Text
 
10 toxic side effects of pornography use
 
From Familyshare.com
 
By GYE Admin

The danger of pornography use isn’t about right and wrong. It’s about the effects that pornography has on the user and the effects it has on the loved ones of the user. Pornography use has serious, negative side effects.

Read more
Torah
 
This is it. No more.
 
By Yakov Shwartz

I would like to share with you the first post of one of our great warriors on the forum, "Ykv_schwartz". The reason I am bringing it today is because he talks about his fall - and subsequent success - from right after Pesach last year.

Today, Yaakov is doing fantastically well and is helping us inspire many other strugglers on the forum.


Hi, I am new to this forum. I have been reading some of your posts in the past few weeks as I was trying to get acquainted with the site and I have been so inspired. I am so happy to finally have a social network to reach out to and share my problems with. For years I have yearned for this. My first encounter with p-rn was at age 10, and I am now 31. (Brief bio: I learn in kollel. I have a wife and four kids. I am considered a learned individual in my community). It was at age 16 that I first set out to change my ways. I had no idea that the battle would take more than 15 years. Even as a bachur I had fears that this problem would be with me as a married man as well. But I was certain that at least when I was married I would have no desire for p-rn. But as all of us know too well, an addiction is an addiction. I would love to share my story in full at a later time as I think it would give great chizuk to all of us. The more we share our stories, the more we realize that we are not alone and we could all fight this together. Over the years, I never gave up. I always knew that I could beat my Y'H. I had many tricks which I hope to share. Most worked for some time, but eventually the Y"H would overpower me and I would be lead into a downward spiral until I hit rock bottom and bring myself back up.


Well for now, I would like to share with you a very effective method that carried me for over six months. Last year, right after Pesach (year 2008), I had a terrible 'attack' of the Y"H. I was constantly on my computer downloading all sorts of movies. I was so depressed. I am in kollel and so this is bein hazmanim and I had more time to my disposable. I wasted it all away, together with my seed. Well, when the new zman started, I decided (for the millionth time) - that's it. No more of this Y"H. So, I stood in front of the mirror, looked at myself and began telling myself over and over and over again that this is it. No more. I gave myself intense Mussar. Well, for two weeks I felt great. However, one Friday morning (may 16, 2008) I was doing work (I am a graphic designer by profession. I do my work on 'off' hours to maintain myself in kollel) and I felt the urge. My body tightened up. What am I going to do now? So I picked myself up and looked in the mirror. But this time I did not talk but yelled, "STOP IT! STOP IT! YOU ARE RUINING MY LIFE! MY WIFE! MY KIDS! GET OUT OF HERE!" I gave myself a nasty look and continued yelling at myself. I was really angry with myself. Well sure enough, my Y"H was scared out of his wits and ran for his life. (This concept of using ones anger is brought down by the R. Yonah in shaarei avodah (a rare sefer to find) and in the Gr"a on Mishlei. They both point out that we need to use our Y'H for good. And both give the example of using our middah of anger to yell at your y"h. It is known that the Chafetz Chaim and the Rav Yisroel Salenter employed this method as well.)


I then began a log and recorded the fact that the Y'H came to visit me and I WON the battle.

He decided to stay away for a while. But a few weeks later he came again. And sure enough, I did the same thing and beat him like wildfire. I was feeling so good. And all by using this method of yelling and getting angry with myself and the Y"H. It was unbelievable. And as Yom Kippur approached, I began to feel great joy and bit of nervousness. Was I going to make it until Yom Kippur? Was I going to finally - after 15 years - be able to properly confess my ways? To say vidui that I will never do again and be honest about it? Well, sure enough, Yom kippur came and I was clean now for all these months. And I had had intense battles with the Y"H and not once did he win. My tears on Yom kippur were like none other. I thanked Hashem profusely for giving me the strength. I felt so victorious. After maariv, I came into my house and began telling my kids that "WE WON! WE WON". They all asked me what happened.. With tears in my eyes, I said Hashem has granted us "mechila". Nobody knew what I was talking about. But I was crying.

Over this period of time, my relationship with my wife and kids was great. There was so much love in the air, you could feel it. I was happy man. My learning sky rocketed. My whole life was uplifted....

For the continuation of Yaakov's Story, see his thread on the forum here.

Chizuk
 
The main bite of the serpent
 
By GYE

Long ago, Rabbi Nachman of Breslov had recognized Simcha as the key to success in fighting the evil inclination and coming truly close to HaShem. In stressing the importance of Simcha he went so far as saying that depression - the antithesis of Simcha - constitutes "the main bite of the serpent (the Yetzer Harah)". How far should a person struggle to remain steadfast and avoid depression? The lesson is best illustrated by the following story Rabbi Nachman told to his disciples:

"But what is the antidote for the person who feels so heavy, so depressed, that no words of encouragement or advice have any effect?"

There was once a poor man who earned a living digging clay and selling it. Once, while digging clay, he discovered a precious stone which was obviously worth a great deal. Since he had no idea of it's worth, he took it to an expert to tell him Its value. The expert answered, "No one here will be able to afford such a stone. Go to London, the capital, and there you will be able to sell it." The man was so poor that he could not afford to make the journey. He sold everything he had, and went from house to house, collecting funds for the trip. Finally he had enough to take him as far as the sea.

He then went to board a ship, but he did not have any money. He went to the ship's captain and showed him the jewel. The captain immediately welcomed him aboard the ship with great honor, assuming he was a very trustworthy person. He gave the poor man a special first class cabin, and treated him like a wealthy personage. The poor man's cabin had a view of the sea, and he sat there, constantly looking at the diamond and rejoicing. He was especially particular to do this during his meals, since eating in good spirits is highly beneficial for digestion. Then one day, he sat down to eat, with the diamond lying in front of him on the table where he could enjoy it. Sifting there he dozed off. Meanwhile, the mess boy came and cleared the table, shaking the tablecloth with it's crumbs and the diamond into the sea. When he woke up and realized what had happened, he almost went mad with grief. Besides, the captain was a ruthless man who would not hesitate to kill him for his fare. Having no other choice, he continued to act happy, as if nothing had happened. The captain would usually speak to him a few hours every day, and on this day, he put himself in good spirits, so that the captain was not aware that anything was wrong. The captain said to him, "I want to buy a large quantity of wheat and I will be able to Sell it in London for a huge profit. But I am afraid that I will be accused of stealing from the king's treasury. Therefore, I will arrange for the wheat to be bought in your name. I will pay you well for your trouble." The poor man agreed. But as soon as they arrived in London the captain died. The entire shipload of wheat was in the poor man's name and it was worth many times as much as the diamond.

Rabbi Nachman concluded, "The diamond did not belong to the poor man, and the proof is that he did not keep it. The wheat, however, did belong to him, and the proof is that he kept it. But he got what he deserved only because he remained happy. *

It is up to each of us never to lose hope, and like the poor man in the story to whom everything appeared lost, force oneself to be happy. Even a faked, ungenuine, happiness, has the power to transform our situation and lead us to genuine joy.

Do you think you may have a porn addiction?
 

Do you have a problem with obsessive and compulsive porn use? Have you seriously tried the tools on GYE and feel that you are not getting better? Maybe it’s time to consider joining a 12-Step program.

Porn Anonymous (PA)
If you’re compulsively acting-out with pornography and masturbation we suggest you explore joining Porn Anonymous (PA). If you need help deciding whether to join PA, call Michael at 347-699-2368, or email help@pornanonymous.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit pornanonymous.org (Hebrew: p-a.org.il / Yiddish: pa-yid.org).

Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
If your compulsive acting-out has progressed beyond the screen (with other people, paid sexual services, etc.) we suggest you explore joining Sexaholics Anonymous (SA). To figure out if SA is for you, call Dov at 917-414-8205, or email Dov at dov@guardyoureyes.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit www.sa.org.

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