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Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 00:41 #340036

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yip. I feel the same way. 
  • I've never been one for signatures.. but sometimes people change
  • I'm seeking the life that I find manageable which may not be the life you find manageable. But let's make a deal. I want you to find yours and you want me to find mine even if they are different.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 04:17 #340050


Even if it would be a Mitzva to watch porn, I would avoid this Miztva.

Love that line! Epic!
Feel free to pm me, I'm a bochur, attend weekly live "SMART recovery" meetings.

הנותן עיניו במה שאינו שלו, מה שמבקש לא נותנים לו, ומה שבידו נוטלים ממנה

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וכו' גם אם יהיה כן כל ימיו במלחמה זו כי אולי לכך נברא וזאת עבודתו לאכפיא לס"א תמיד 
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Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 04:32 #340052

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It’s a nice line, but excuse me while I vent that we’ve forgotten something fundamental here.

Everyone here says that they aren’t motivated to stop because Hashem said so; they’re motivated because they want to be a human or a mensch. Dov often talks about Derech Eretz comignbefore the Torah, and we have to be people before we’re frum.

Guess what? There is no Mitzvah to watch porn. And, gasp-there is a Mitzvah of קדושים תהיו. And guess what else? All these reasons that we want to be sober besides the Torah-they’re all in there. Hashem wants us to be mentchen and not animals, and he wants us to have clear heads that aren’t full of junk so we can connect to our families and wives and Torah and Him-and so of course, and I know everyone knows this, there could never be a Mitzvah Chas veshalom to watch porn. 

So, since we are still a frum forum, whether or not our catalyst or motivation is because of Hashem or “humanity”, one thing we can’t forget. All these lofty, or maybe very basic ideas hat we’re expressing-about stopping because it’s gross and we feel like animals- the Torah knee that too. 

The Torah knew that when it called מצריים who were known to be involved in עריות as חמורים וסוסים, and it knew it when the Midrash says that one who is running after עריות we feed them their own flesh. 

So yeah, if it was a Mitzvah-ok scratch that. I’ll stop for whatever reason I’ll stop, but Hashem, thanks for recognizing all these things before the fact that we’ve recognized after we’ve indulged in them- that your תורה which you say is לטוב לך, which is good for us, is good for us in this world and observing it protects us from so many problems that we face when we don’t listen. 

Please don’t take this as directed at either of you; it’s something that’s been bubbling over for a while based on many posts I’ve seen, recently and in the past. 

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 04:45 #340054

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Workingguy wrote on 27 Mar 2019 04:32:
It’s a nice line, but excuse me while I vent that we’ve forgotten something fundamental here.

Everyone here says that they aren’t motivated to stop because Hashem said so; they’re motivated because they want to be a human or a mensch. Dov often talks about Derech Eretz comignbefore the Torah, and we have to be people before we’re frum.

Guess what? There is no Mitzvah to watch porn. And, gasp-there is a Mitzvah of קדושים תהיו. And guess what else? All these reasons that we want to be sober besides the Torah-they’re all in there. Hashem wants us to be mentchen and not animals, and he wants us to have clear heads that aren’t full of junk so we can connect to our families and wives and Torah and Him-and so of course, and I know everyone knows this, there could never be a Mitzvah Chas veshalom to watch porn. 

So, since we are still a frum forum, whether or not our catalyst or motivation is because of Hashem or “humanity”, one thing we can’t forget. All these lofty, or maybe very basic ideas hat we’re expressing-about stopping because it’s gross and we feel like animals- the Torah knee that too. 

The Torah knew that when it called מצריים who were known to be involved in עריות as חמורים וסוסים, and it knew it when the Midrash says that one who is running after עריות we feed them their own flesh. 

So yeah, if it was a Mitzvah-ok scratch that. I’ll stop for whatever reason I’ll stop, but Hashem, thanks for recognizing all these things before the fact that we’ve recognized after we’ve indulged in them- that your תורה which you say is לטוב לך, which is good for us, is good for us in this world and observing it protects us from so many problems that we face when we don’t listen. 

Please don’t take this as directed at either of you; it’s something that’s been bubbling over for a while based on many posts I’ve seen, recently and in the past. 

I think most of what you wrote is true and accurate, maybe even all, but what is your point? The source for the derech eretz may be found in the torah, true, and therefore.....?
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If one gives up at the first sign of a struggle, he is really not ready to be successful."
"Tryin' and doin' are two different thin's - tryin' is hopin'; doin' is succeedin'.
"The right thin' to do and the hard thin' to do are usually the same."


Disclaimer: I am not a cheerleader; B"H, there are many on the site. I am here to change myself, and with God's help, by some mistake, I might even help change others.

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Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 04:48 #340056

Your right, however at least my point is, people are trying to use Torah to heal themselves when they don't acknowledge that they need a emotional doctor, and guess what the Torah simply won't help, the torah itself says one should go to a doctor.

But not c"v forgetting about the eibishter and torah, its just using the other extreme..
Feel free to pm me, I'm a bochur, attend weekly live "SMART recovery" meetings.

הנותן עיניו במה שאינו שלו, מה שמבקש לא נותנים לו, ומה שבידו נוטלים ממנה

(סוטה ט, עמוד א)


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וכו' גם אם יהיה כן כל ימיו במלחמה זו כי אולי לכך נברא וזאת עבודתו לאכפיא לס"א תמיד 
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Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 13:55 #340064

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Workingguy wrote on 27 Mar 2019 04:32:
It’s a nice line, but excuse me while I vent that we’ve forgotten something fundamental here.

Everyone here says that they aren’t motivated to stop because Hashem said so; they’re motivated because they want to be a human or a mensch. Dov often talks about Derech Eretz comignbefore the Torah, and we have to be people before we’re frum.

Guess what? There is no Mitzvah to watch porn. And, gasp-there is a Mitzvah of קדושים תהיו. And guess what else? All these reasons that we want to be sober besides the Torah-they’re all in there. Hashem wants us to be mentchen and not animals, and he wants us to have clear heads that aren’t full of junk so we can connect to our families and wives and Torah and Him-and so of course, and I know everyone knows this, there could never be a Mitzvah Chas veshalom to watch porn. 

So, since we are still a frum forum, whether or not our catalyst or motivation is because of Hashem or “humanity”, one thing we can’t forget. All these lofty, or maybe very basic ideas hat we’re expressing-about stopping because it’s gross and we feel like animals- the Torah knee that too. 

The Torah knew that when it called מצריים who were known to be involved in עריות as חמורים וסוסים, and it knew it when the Midrash says that one who is running after עריות we feed them their own flesh. 

So yeah, if it was a Mitzvah-ok scratch that. I’ll stop for whatever reason I’ll stop, but Hashem, thanks for recognizing all these things before the fact that we’ve recognized after we’ve indulged in them- that your תורה which you say is לטוב לך, which is good for us, is good for us in this world and observing it protects us from so many problems that we face when we don’t listen. 

Please don’t take this as directed at either of you; it’s something that’s been bubbling over for a while based on many posts I’ve seen, recently and in the past. 

WG I think different people can realte to this differently. I get from you that yo are trying to say.. 'Well nice and good guys that you want to  be sober for a different reason, but GUESS WHAT it's also a mitzvah to be a 'human being' so why not just say it- say that being sober for the sake or Torah is where it's really at and that is what we frum addicts wnat and that is good'

So for me (and I am not speaking for anyone else, or trying to be dispariging) that makes me queasy. Actually queasy is an understatement it makes me want to vomit my guts out a lot, and then eat a lot and vomit it all again. I do NOT want any connection between being a human being and being frum. I want to be frum because my mind understands and agrees that Hashem gave the Torah on Sinai and we are bound to this beautiful document with unfathomable opportunity to obtain olam habah and truly enjoy olam hazeh as well along the way. 

The Torah is NOT there to make me a normal person. That I do for my own personal interests. So when the line gets blurred between the two, for me it makes me very uncomfortable.

The hurt and hate I have in my heart for decades of feeling like a failure in inyonei kedusha - and masturbation mzl is probably never going to go away.

I love Hashem. I turn to Him daily for my challenges in parnassa, shalom bayis, chinuch habonim, my own middos and growth. I learn and enjoy it. etc...

But at the base of my internal structure, I want t be a human being for me. Not for God/Torah. EVEN though He created me. And that is admittedly an arrogant position. BUT it's the truth of how I feel.

Trying to change things at that level NEVER in TEN YEARS EVER ONCE helped me stop doing things I wasnt happy with and He wasn't happy with.. (trying to use Torah as a motivator for staying away from masturbation n porn)

So in my perhaps arrogant and immature emotional mindset- I hate having Judaism have a say in anything to do with me wanting to be sober. And I think me, the Jewish God and the God of my understanding (the latter two being one and the same since there is only one God) are all ok with that. 

Basically, I think God/Torah wants me to just want to be a human being on my own. Even if I don't keep the Torah.

Incidentally, Rav Chaim Vital discusses that middos are rooted in the mind and that very concept (I think... it's brought in Alei Shur chelek rishon) that the Torah needs a basis of a normal human mind to be chal. So maybe I did get it from mussar study. What that means to me is exactly what I am saying. I wanna 'be normal' (ie not watch porn) just to be normal not because it's a mitzvah/aveirah thing.

If I watch porn I wanna feel 'not normal' I dont wanna feel the mitzvah aveirah feelings... those feelings can go someplace else..
  • I've never been one for signatures.. but sometimes people change
  • I'm seeking the life that I find manageable which may not be the life you find manageable. But let's make a deal. I want you to find yours and you want me to find mine even if they are different.
Last Edit: 27 Mar 2019 14:03 by OTR.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 19:56 #340090

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Cordnoy,

Not sure what you didn’t get. I’m not specifically saying Derech Eretz comes before; I’m saying something much more than that, explained below. 

I think Schnitzel and OTR hit it on the head. But let me clarify.

OTR, I don’t think we should be sober for the sake of the Torah or Hashem. Halevai, but It hasn’t worked for most, and definitely didn’t work for me either. So while I wouldn’t vomit like you, I agree.

And Schnitzel, I also agree that we have to go to a doctor or psychiatrist when we need one. Or SA. Or whatever. And I went to SA.

And I am also NOT, as Rabbi Twerski does so well, trying to show how 12 steps is in the Torah, or Torah, or anything like that. 

I am saying one thing- let’s stop misrepresenting the Torah as something that can’t talk to our humanity or being normal. The Ramban points out that the Torah is good for you- not as in it’s positive psychology, but what Hashem obstructed is to do is also good for life. That’s not the reason to do it or not; it’s just a fact. 

But don’t forget that whatever the Torah asks of us is actually part of being a human, not something holy that’s disconnected and Christian. The Torah could never have a Mitzvah to watch porn because it goes against everything we stand for. 

Our issue here is that for many of us, myself included, we struggle to find the Torah as meaningful to change our struggles in this year, and past misrepresentations and religious guilt make it almost impossible. 

I’m completely ok with that, and have no issue. But remember that כי לא דבר רק הוא מכם- as the Rambam writes, if we don’t find it in here, it’s our issue.  

There’s a smugness here often (and I’m not addressing OTR or Schnitzel, this just reminded me and I’m getting it off my chest) that’s like- “well, the Torah doesn’t got this, but I’ve got it covered because I’m HUMAN. 

It’s in the Torah too, and whether we can find it there or not, I think it’s important- actually vital to acknowledge that it’s there.

End of rant. 

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 20:20 #340093

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A: Vomiting is never convincing when induced.. so if it doesn't come naturally then carry on... Ipecac offers waived. 
B: Smugness. Yes probably. nu... I don't think that changes the veracity of what I am saying. 
C: That point of the rambam etc.. is all AFTER you are a normal human being and then yes- of course!- the Torah helps reinforce a healthy mind and emotion. But it can not build a person from being a partial person to a full starting gate human. The person needs to be there first. And for that I don't want Torah because I don't think that is what the Torah or God wants from me. I think He WANTS me to be in it for myself on that level as deficient as that is aliba d'emmes. It is the condition of being a human being.

Just my feelings.
  • I've never been one for signatures.. but sometimes people change
  • I'm seeking the life that I find manageable which may not be the life you find manageable. But let's make a deal. I want you to find yours and you want me to find mine even if they are different.
Last Edit: 27 Mar 2019 20:20 by OTR.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 20:33 #340095

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Workingguy wrote on 27 Mar 2019 19:56:
Cordnoy,

Not sure what you didn’t get. I’m not specifically saying Derech Eretz comes before; I’m saying something much more than that, explained below. 

I think Schnitzel and OTR hit it on the head. But let me clarify.

OTR, I don’t think we should be sober for the sake of the Torah or Hashem. Halevai, but It hasn’t worked for most, and definitely didn’t work for me either. So while I wouldn’t vomit like you, I agree.

And Schnitzel, I also agree that we have to go to a doctor or psychiatrist when we need one. Or SA. Or whatever. And I went to SA.

And I am also NOT, as Rabbi Twerski does so well, trying to show how 12 steps is in the Torah, or Torah, or anything like that. 

I am saying one thing- let’s stop misrepresenting the Torah as something that can’t talk to our humanity or being normal. The Ramban points out that the Torah is good for you- not as in it’s positive psychology, but what Hashem obstructed is to do is also good for life. That’s not the reason to do it or not; it’s just a fact. 

But don’t forget that whatever the Torah asks of us is actually part of being a human, not something holy that’s disconnected and Christian. The Torah could never have a Mitzvah to watch porn because it goes against everything we stand for. 

Our issue here is that for many of us, myself included, we struggle to find the Torah as meaningful to change our struggles in this year, and past misrepresentations and religious guilt make it almost impossible. 

I’m completely ok with that, and have no issue. But remember that כי לא דבר רק הוא מכם- as the Rambam writes, if we don’t find it in here, it’s our issue.  

There’s a smugness here often (and I’m not addressing OTR or Schnitzel, this just reminded me and I’m getting it off my chest) that’s like- “well, the Torah doesn’t got this, but I’ve got it covered because I’m HUMAN. 

It’s in the Torah too, and whether we can find it there or not, I think it’s important- actually vital to acknowledge that it’s there.

End of rant. 

my apologies; I do not get your point.

at times i read it and i think you are sayin' nothin' too much (as is "everythin' can be found in the Torah), as you write yourself, but then you write that you are gettin' this off your chest and people are misrepresentin' and it's a rant.

I used to tell this to dov: please don't tell me what you're not sayin'; tell me what you are sayin'.

Thank you
My email: thenewme613@hotmail.com
My threads:
GYE Handbook | Gibbor's Insights | GYE FAQ - Thanks Skep and DMS123456789 White Book | Big Book (Alcoholics Anonymous)

If one gives up at the first sign of a struggle, he is really not ready to be successful."
"Tryin' and doin' are two different thin's - tryin' is hopin'; doin' is succeedin'.
"The right thin' to do and the hard thin' to do are usually the same."


Disclaimer: I am not a cheerleader; B"H, there are many on the site. I am here to change myself, and with God's help, by some mistake, I might even help change others.

MY POSTS ARE NOT WRITTEN AS A MODERATOR UNLESS EXPLICITLY STATED.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 27 Mar 2019 21:06 #340096

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And why (as crazy as it sounds) could the torah not contain the mitzvah of watchin' porn (perhaps like some have quoted reb moshe, although I don't vouch for it at all)? Why is it "against everythin' we stand for" (outside of the torah)?
My email: thenewme613@hotmail.com
My threads:
GYE Handbook | Gibbor's Insights | GYE FAQ - Thanks Skep and DMS123456789 White Book | Big Book (Alcoholics Anonymous)

If one gives up at the first sign of a struggle, he is really not ready to be successful."
"Tryin' and doin' are two different thin's - tryin' is hopin'; doin' is succeedin'.
"The right thin' to do and the hard thin' to do are usually the same."


Disclaimer: I am not a cheerleader; B"H, there are many on the site. I am here to change myself, and with God's help, by some mistake, I might even help change others.

MY POSTS ARE NOT WRITTEN AS A MODERATOR UNLESS EXPLICITLY STATED.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 28 Mar 2019 03:57 #340105

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Cords, 

I don’t get it- basic Derech Eretz wouldn’t allow porn, correct? That’s what everyone here says. Then is there a “tzad” that Torah could? What is the Torah if not building on, and elevating, that basic Derech Eretz to make ממלכת כהנים and בנים למקום? 

If Derech Eretz doesn’t allow it, the Torah definitely wouldn’t. Because the Torah is that and more. (צניעות מחתול, פיוס  מתרנגולת).

Your question is specifically what I’m coming to address. Derech Eretz has to come before because it’s the bedrock-the operating system if you will- upon which we overlay the Mitzvos of the Torah to now take that Derech Eretz even further. We go from the basics and take the human qualities and we elevate them even more till the lucky ones can get to חסידות נקיות פרישות etc. 

But let no one think that the lessons they need in order to stop porn and are learning from Derech Eretz are there and not in the Torah. They are in the Torah too- not some sort of weird, lofty, spiritual message that’s out of reach. They are telling you what you’ll find in Derech Eretz and more. But if you haven’t done the Derech Eretz, you won’t be able to access it. 

I’m protesting that, for all the people who need to learn it from some place else than the Torah, they should never think the lack is on the Torah’s side. All the messages are in there. It may not motivate them, it may not be relevant right now, but they’re all there. 

Dont know if this clarified at all, but either way, this is philosophical, not practical. Practically, I’m all in favor of doing whatever works for you best ומקבל את האמת ממי שאמרו

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 28 Mar 2019 11:54 #340114

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Sorry, I don't agree with the first sentence.

Additionally, I think that attitude gets people into trouble, as they view themselves as animals and feel real low now that they watched porn and desire it.
My email: thenewme613@hotmail.com
My threads:
GYE Handbook | Gibbor's Insights | GYE FAQ - Thanks Skep and DMS123456789 White Book | Big Book (Alcoholics Anonymous)

If one gives up at the first sign of a struggle, he is really not ready to be successful."
"Tryin' and doin' are two different thin's - tryin' is hopin'; doin' is succeedin'.
"The right thin' to do and the hard thin' to do are usually the same."


Disclaimer: I am not a cheerleader; B"H, there are many on the site. I am here to change myself, and with God's help, by some mistake, I might even help change others.

MY POSTS ARE NOT WRITTEN AS A MODERATOR UNLESS EXPLICITLY STATED.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 28 Mar 2019 14:46 #340120

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cordnoy wrote on 27 Mar 2019 21:06:
And why (as crazy as it sounds) could the torah not contain the mitzvah of watchin' porn (perhaps like some have quoted reb moshe, although I don't vouch for it at all)? Why is it "against everythin' we stand for" (outside of the torah)?

WHOOOOAAAAA WWHOAAAAAAH!!! Hold up.. reverse.. strikethrough- deletel...

Rav Moshe was not asked about watching porn. I looked at the teshuva. It seems he was asked about looking at sex manuals. The type you would find on webmd.com and mayoclinic.. NOT porn. And from what I recall. His answer was, if it was needed then very close to the time of being together he seemed to permit it. I would have to look inside again, but I don't think he was allowing teh viewing of this to enahnce ones desire and get aroused at the images, but more so taht if people didn't know entirely what to do (it happens) then they would be able to uderstand what to do. It sounds simple to some. But if you were never exposed to women's anatomy it can be confusing. I remember shailos I had when I first got married- I just really was unaware of what went on down there exactly. 
  • I've never been one for signatures.. but sometimes people change
  • I'm seeking the life that I find manageable which may not be the life you find manageable. But let's make a deal. I want you to find yours and you want me to find mine even if they are different.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 28 Mar 2019 15:00 #340121

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Workingguy wrote on 28 Mar 2019 03:57:
Cords, 

I don’t get it- basic Derech Eretz wouldn’t allow porn, correct? That’s what everyone here says. Then is there a “tzad” that Torah could? What is the Torah if not building on, and elevating, that basic Derech Eretz to make ממלכת כהנים and בנים למקום? 

If Derech Eretz doesn’t allow it, the Torah definitely wouldn’t. Because the Torah is that and more. (צניעות מחתול, פיוס  מתרנגולת).

Your question is specifically what I’m coming to address. Derech Eretz has to come before because it’s the bedrock-the operating system if you will- upon which we overlay the Mitzvos of the Torah to now take that Derech Eretz even further. We go from the basics and take the human qualities and we elevate them even more till the lucky ones can get to חסידות נקיות פרישות etc. 

But let no one think that the lessons they need in order to stop porn and are learning from Derech Eretz are there and not in the Torah. They are in the Torah too- not some sort of weird, lofty, spiritual message that’s out of reach. They are telling you what you’ll find in Derech Eretz and more. But if you haven’t done the Derech Eretz, you won’t be able to access it. 

I’m protesting that, for all the people who need to learn it from some place else than the Torah, they should never think the lack is on the Torah’s side. All the messages are in there. It may not motivate them, it may not be relevant right now, but they’re all there. 

Dont know if this clarified at all, but either way, this is philosophical, not practical. Practically, I’m all in favor of doing whatever works for you best ומקבל את האמת ממי שאמרו

Agree wiht teh first two paragraphs. The later half I would say like this- 

Not sure if I agree. Torah is instructions. The manual begins assuming you have all the peices in place and ready to assemble. One of those pieces is a complete starting level human being. The fact that the Torah endorses the concept of a complete human being deosn't mean it is meant to instruct a person how to be that. It (imho based and what I got from all the rabbis I ever spoke to) means that in order to assemble a spiritual ladder (Torah zeheirus zerizus.. or whatever system you work with of growth) you need that person to start. 

On a deeper level, if I wanted to see the derech eretz thing as part of the 'Torah' it needs to apply to all people. Not just the mamleches kohanim.  I am talking about a normalcy that (although rare in the world) applies to humanity not just yiddin. THAT I can hear IS rooted in the Torah. Because the Torah is the blueprint for creation, all of it and all people and creatures involved. So yeh on that level Torah can be the source of decency in my understanding. Whatever ways we as Jews are 'different' mamleches kohanim - goy kadosh... has no shaychus to my thinking on masturbation and porn other than that if I do those things I have transgressed. And that causes me pain. No amount of focusing on those specifically Jewish concepts helps me, or anyone I know who feels they are addict/obsessed or somehow drawn to these actions in a different more volatile way, stay sober/clean/away from doing it. But focusing on that 'human element' (not an esoteric  etheral removed spirituality... It's NOT spirituality!  It's humanity!) does help me. 
  • I've never been one for signatures.. but sometimes people change
  • I'm seeking the life that I find manageable which may not be the life you find manageable. But let's make a deal. I want you to find yours and you want me to find mine even if they are different.
Last Edit: 28 Mar 2019 15:02 by OTR.

Re: OnTheRoad is BackonTrack is OTR is.... 29 Mar 2019 03:54 #340161

  • Workingguy
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Cords, 



I don’t get it- basic Derech Eretz wouldn’t allow porn, correct? That’s what everyone here says. Then is there a “tzad” that Torah could? What is the Torah if not building on, and elevating, that basic Derech Eretz to make ממלכת כהנים and בנים למקום? 



If Derech Eretz doesn’t allow it, the Torah definitely wouldn’t. Because the Torah is that and more. (צניעות מחתול, פיוס  מתרנגולת).



Your question is specifically what I’m coming to address. Derech Eretz has to come before because it’s the bedrock-the operating system if you will- upon which we overlay the Mitzvos of the Torah to now take that Derech Eretz even further. We go from the basics and take the human qualities and we elevate them even more till the lucky ones can get to חסידות נקיות פרישות etc. 



But let no one think that the lessons they need in order to stop porn and are learning from Derech Eretz are there and not in the Torah. They are in the Torah too- not some sort of weird, lofty, spiritual message that’s out of reach. They are telling you what you’ll find in Derech Eretz and more. But if you haven’t done the Derech Eretz, you won’t be able to access it. 



I’m protesting that, for all the people who need to learn it from some place else than the Torah, they should never think the lack is on the Torah’s side. All the messages are in there. It may not motivate them, it may not be relevant right now, but they’re all there. 



Dont know if this clarified at all, but either way, this is philosophical, not practical. Practically, I’m all in favor of doing whatever works for you best ומקבל את האמת ממי שאמרו
Agree wiht teh first two paragraphs. The later half I would say like this- 



Not sure if I agree. Torah is instructions. The manual begins assuming you have all the peices in place and ready to assemble. One of those pieces is a complete starting level human being. The fact that the Torah endorses the concept of a complete human being deosn't mean it is meant to instruct a person how to be that. It (imho based and what I got from all the rabbis I ever spoke to) means that in order to assemble a spiritual ladder (Torah zeheirus zerizus.. or whatever system you work with of growth) you need that person to start. 



On a deeper level, if I wanted to see the derech eretz thing as part of the 'Torah' it needs to apply to all people. Not just the mamleches kohanim.  I am talking about a normalcy that (although rare in the world) applies to humanity not just yiddin. THAT I can hear IS rooted in the Torah. Because the Torah is the blueprint for creation, all of it and all people and creatures involved. So yeh on that level Torah can be the source of decency in my understanding. Whatever ways we as Jews are 'different' mamleches kohanim - goy kadosh... has no shaychus to my thinking on masturbation and porn other than that if I do those things I have transgressed. And that causes me pain. No amount of focusing on those specifically Jewish concepts helps me, or anyone I know who feels they are addict/obsessed or somehow drawn to these actions in a different more volatile way, stay sober/clean/away from doing it. But focusing on that 'human element' (not an esoteric  etheral removed spirituality... It's NOT spirituality!  It's humanity!) does help me. 
So I’ll gladly say- that whatever helps you is what you should use (provided it doesn’t mean chatting with another woman
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