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The more you feed it, the more you need it

obormottel Monday, 06 November 2017

The Gemara Sanhedrin (107a) says that Dovid Hamelech requested a Nisayon, and Hashem notified him that he would be tested in matters of immorality. The Gemara learns that David had relations with his wife at that point, as a way of ensuring that he could withstand the temptation with another woman. The Gemara says that (on some level) this was actually a mistake being that David Hamelech would have had an easier time overcoming the test if he had not just had relations with his wife (see Artscroll 107a1 note 8 and 9), being that the more one attempts to satiate his organ the more it hungers him (obviously we cannot relate to David's level whatsoever, and the Gemara says that whoever says they can understand David's sin is making a mistake, however, we can learn lessons that the Gemara learns out from the incident).

I found two strong Chizuk messages from this story:

1. Many might think that if only we could have relations with our wife more often, or if she would be doing more to please us, that would help us stay away from our lust temptations. From here we see the fallacy in that argument. Having relations does not make it easier to overcome our lusts. Obviously, there is a Mitzvah to have relations with our wives which we can not ignore, but that is not the tool to overcome our lust (this is also mentioned by the Shulchan Aruch Ohr Hachaim 240,1.).

2. Sometimes we may find a strong lust temptation the night of Mikveh or another time after recently having had relations with our wives, which may make us feel extra guilty and like something is seriously wrong with us to be having the temptation at that moment. This Gemara is a Chizuk that it is normal to have a stronger desire in this area after having recently engaged in it.