Buddha and Revolutionary Road

I read a quote by Buddha today: “Peace comes from within; do not seek it without.” I guess it means everything you need is already with you, that you have to be at peace with yourself rather than trying to fill your needs externally. Of course, like everything else lately, the quote made me think of sex. I’m beginning to realize that my need for sex is not only physical, the satisfaction and pleasure I derive from the act has also been a way to feed my ego. It’s a turn on to turn someone on; to get a reaction out of your partner, well, there’s a power in that. There is also a rush that comes from meeting a new person, kissing them and undressing them for the first time, feeling an unfamiliar body.

Once it’s over, though, the rush is gone and there is a kind of crash that happens much like a hangover or the down that comes after a narcotic binge. I think that’s why I always went for the morning after the night before sex, too–I just wanted the high to last a little longer; I wasn’t ready to come down. Now that I’m abstaining altogether, I’m in this constant state of being down. Not that I feel depressed or anything, just like something is missing. I don’t even feel like using my vibrator which is what got me through dry spells before. I know I just need to sit here with my feelings and that the solution to any problems I may have doesn’t lie with another person, especially not their mere physical body.

One of my favourite books is Revolutionary Road and the movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet was a catalyst for my divorce. A line near the end of the novel goes something like this: “anything important in life has to be done by yourself”. When you run a marathon there may be thousands of people running alongside you, but in the end no one but you gets your ass across the finish line. When I gave birth, my husband and the nurses were excellent coaches but it was me and me alone who pushed that baby out.

So now, as I sit here alone with everything reminding me of sex, and tossing and turning last night because I couldn’t have it, I think maybe this adventure in abstinence could turn out to be a very spiritual exercise, one where I learn to do without, to seek my solace within, and to just be still for once rather than yearning yearning yearning.

Published in: on September 23, 2010 at 2:41 am  Leave a Comment  

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