Lust Epidemic: the Quest for a Voluptuous Adolescent Ideal


Some men can live up to their loftiest ideals without ever going higher than a basement. —Theodore Roosevelt

     All right, this little essay is going to be “fluffy” and rather naughty, even somewhat pornographic and maybe even slightly obscene. The thing is that recently, while wandering through cyberspace, I stumbled upon a free erotic computer game called “Lust Epidemic”; and, although it is inappropriate and conducive to unwholesome sensual stimulations and desires and all that, I played it. I can be diplomatic and say that I did it largely out of curiosity, though of course if the game were about economics or kittens or flower arranging I probably wouldn’t have taken the trouble or the time. I find eroticism particularly interesting and intriguing for some reason. Nevertheless, I am always receptive to learning experiences, and this strange game does seem to provide information that is worthy of consideration—at least with regard to understanding male sexuality, and especially adolescent male sexuality. So anyway, I warn my more straight-laced and/or puritanical readers that the following post deals with sexual matters, and some of the illustrations feature erotic acts and phenomenally large, jiggly, computer-generated female breasts (though I will spare you the more explicit hardcore illustrations, to say nothing of the game’s optional bukkake mode). You have been warned.




     So anyway, as I said, the game is called Lust Epidemic, and it’s created by a little company called NLT Media, which, as far as I could tell when researching my topic a little, is mainly an individual artist who in the past has specialized in erotic digital graphic novels. (This one person is clearly not the only contributor to the making of the game, as the feminine voices and sound effects were pretty obviously made by real females.) The game itself, and this shouldn’t be too surprising, appears to be directed especially towards adolescent boys, or young adult males, like high school students. I venture this declaration because the game seems largely to be, in addition to a video game, adolescent male fantasy fulfillment of a rather Freudian, Oedipal nature. And I must say that, in addition to being a challenging and enjoyable game, it made a profound impression on me, which had me in an altered state of consciousness for at least three days—the amount of time required to play the thing from start to finish. (And I suppose I should clarify that the “impression” wasn’t merely lust, although I admit that that was stimulated a bit also.)

     What follows will contain spoilers, which I include without compunction, because my official position as a monk precludes any actual encouragement to anyone to actually play such a naughty game. I played it so you don’t have to.




     The general plot which strings the episodes of sexuality together is a supernatural murder mystery, with the game won by solving the mystery and escaping from danger—so it’s not all sex. Most of the story of the game takes place in the seminary building (no pun intended) of SDU, a small university, and one of the first plot developments involves the resident Catholic priest being shot and seemingly killed in the chapel…but I suppose I should back up a little. The game, and the story, begin with the protagonist, Brad, attending a meeting at this seminary, concerning a number of scandals at Brad’s own school East State University, culminating in a porn video being filmed on the ESU campus. A local TV news anchorwoman named Amber Harrison has conspired with the president of Saint Dame University to broadcast an exposé of the scandals at ESU, mainly as a means of ruining ESU’s reputation. So, the two (female) top-ranking administrators of ESU, the grown son of one of the two, and Brad enter “enemy territory” to meet with the (male) top-ranking administrator of SDU, the news lady, a private investigator, and one of the boys involved in the making of the video. Also at the seminary building are the priest, a young nun named Sister Katherine, and a security guard. A severe storm hits the area, the bridges are washed out, and everyone is required to spend a few days at the seminary until they can be rescued, or else rescue themselves.

     But a central plot element is that the boy involved in the porn video, Andy, has been producing a very powerful aphrodisiac which causes anyone, especially women, to become extremely sexually aroused and, especially with high doses, to lose all inhibition. The scandals at Brad’s school have been side effects of wiseguys wantonly using this drug on female students, teachers, other students’ mothers, and any other woman whom they find desirable. As if this weren’t enough, eventually it is discovered that the priest is a demonic being inhabiting a human body, and who is preparing a new body to inhabit (the priest’s being old and ready to discard), by keeping young women in a basement dungeon, constantly drugged on the aphrodisiac, and getting one of the girls pregnant with the demon’s intended new vehicle.

     The super aphrodisiac, which not only has been secretly brought by the devious nerd who makes it but also has been mass produced by the priest for his dungeon, eventually permeates the air and water at the seminary—which very conveniently justifies some of the universal absurd tropes of porn narratives in general, for example the chronic promiscuous horniness and wanton bisexuality of all the women, as well as their unanimous enthusiastic enjoyment of anal sex. The aphrodisiac also conveniently explains the young protagonist’s virtually perpetual erection and his inexhaustible supply of precious bodily fluids. (As an aside, I’ve occasionally wondered why there has not evolved some venereal disease which causes those infected by it to be inflamed with sexual arousal. It would make perfect sense from a Darwinian perspective…but I digress.)


(pixelated for your comfort)


     Much of the eroticism in the story is run of the mill exploitation of standard male sexual desires, for example the bevy of curvaceous, voluptuous, sexually receptive females; the loss of innocence of three virgins (including Brad himself), and the fact that, aside from a brief scene in which the nerd Andy gets to third base with the sluttiest, easiest female, the protagonist gets ALL the girls. All of them. Even the macho elder males don’t get any action. But already I’m straying into the realm, as I mentioned already, of the adolescent, arguably Freudian fantasy stuff.

     I don’t think Freud was correct in his theories concerning the Oedipus complex, although it has been stated by evolutionary biologists that men do indeed tend to be attracted to women who resemble their own mother. This may come in part from inheriting one’s father’s own tastes in women; although I have read that it originates with the mother herself. She can more effectively reproduce her own DNA sequences if her son, who already possesses half of them, mates with a female who resembles her—and therefore is likely to possess many of her own genetic traits, and thus more of her DNA sequences, though “borrowed” from someone else. It’s a case of the selfish gene governing our lives. But we’re straying from the titillating topic of pornographic computer games.

     So, some of the peculiar adolescent fantasy aspects are as follows. First and most obvious methinks, three of the four main “love interests” are middle-aged women evidently between forty and fifty years of age, easily old enough to be the protagonist’s mother. All three of them have grown children—in fact one of them is the mother of one of Brad’s older friends, who is allegedly 23 and the youngest of her offspring. This particular MILF, Amanda, has dark hair with grey highlights; whereas the most modest of the three graces, and Brad’s real love interest (as opposed to mere sex interest), is evidently even older and has grey hair and wears granny glasses. (By the way, and I warn you this essay is full of asides, it wasn’t until 2011, upon my return to the USA, that I learned what the term MILF means.) It probably is no coincidence that the older and more matronly a woman is, the more outrageously pneumatic she is—all three flaunt prodigiously large breasts, which, despite their mature years, suffer no unattractive sag or loss of resilience. In fact all three mature ladies have phenomenally developed, curvaceous yet muscular bodies, with no shriveling or wrinkling at all except for a few subtle lines around the mouth to make them look their age, more or less. Also, although they are more than twice his age they are all still premenopausal, and thus still able to be impregnated as well as quite able to be inflamed with sexual passion.




     Another peculiarity is that all of the older women are physically taller and larger than the protagonist. They’re evidently taller than him even when not wearing their porn-mandatory spike heels. (Even the nun wears them, although we’ll get to her later.) Although Brad is supposed to be around twenty years old and a university student, the fact is that he doesn’t appear to be full grown. Also he is not particularly well developed in the musculature department, much unlike the older men, or even the ladies. Furthermore, he has little body hair, and no pubic hair at all, although some of the women have wisps of the latter. This may be a subjective fantasy for the nerdy teenagers who play the game—placing themselves in the future position of college student and fantasizing about the “action” they will be getting, and which they’re very likely not getting in high school.

     Another possibly Oedipal peculiarity is that all of the three MILF romantic interests are successful and respectable authority figures. The most authoritarian (and bossy) one, the mother of his friend and administrator of ESU, is frequently called “Mrs. Bancroft” by Brad, even while he’s having sex with her, even in the heat of preclimactic passion. I have read that the creator evidently got into some difficulties with Patreon because one of his erotic graphic computer novels featured incest—which is very possibly suggested here.




     Of the four main female characters, the only one who isn’t a middle-aged mother of adult children is the nun, who is a virgin. But she also appears significantly older than Brad, perhaps in her late twenties or early thirties. The virgin nun is a real challenge for our hero, even when both of them are doped up on aphrodisiac serum and inflamed with carnal desire—although I assume deflowering virgins (let alone nuns) is not necessarily an aspect of exclusively adolescent fantasy, aside from getting oneself deflowered. Although Brad enters the seminary a virgin, by the time he lays Sister Katherine he has become adept at the arts of seduction, and the dishonest lines he feeds her in his attempts to cure her of her own virginity are somewhat repugnant to me. (I’ve never liked lying to women in order to score with them, which is what many or most pickup “artists” do; and which helps to explain why I was never much of a smooth operator with women. Also, as a Buddhist, there is the consideration that seducing a nun is one of the worst things a guy can do. It’s approximately as bad as starting a schism, and is a virtual guarantee of hell. Finally, I gotta admit that Sister Katherine is my favorite, and I have tender feelings for her and don’t like to see her deceived and manipulated.)

     “Modesty,” especially in the hearts of the nun and the grey-haired maternal love interest, leads women to do just about everything before letting him ejaculate into their vagina—anal, facials, cleavage sex, whatever. Another reason for this reluctance is fear of pregnancy, since as I’ve already mentioned they are all still of breeding age. Nevertheless (big spoiler here), ultimately every female in the story winds up impregnated by this one kid. So it’s not standard porn. It’s porn with juvenile fantasyland mixed in. Strangely, when women are most inflamed with sensual passion they beg our protagonist to impregnate them.

     The two dungeon slaves who eventually make an appearance are around the same age as the protagonist, and are correspondingly less divinely Junoesque than the others; although by actual human standards they’re still pretty damn voluptuous. One of them is still a virgin, and the other is about seven or eight months pregnant, though both of them are brainwashed by the demonic priest and extremely naive and childlike. And before leaving the topic of virginity once and for all, even the matrons express some girlish innocence; for example they are introduced to “Greek love” by the recently virginal protagonist himself, and all but one or maybe two of the top four, I’m pretty sure, has never lain with another woman. So the innocent boy becomes an experienced master practically overnight. More adolescent fantasy material, I suppose.




     One of the primary purposes of my writings here is political incorrectness, and so I may as well observe that the political incorrectness in this game is mainly limited to stereotyping women along pornographic lines. (Incest, however, along with most other sexual deviations, is not particularly objectionable at all to PC lefties.) Nevertheless, in addition to sexism and the graphic objectification of women’s bodies there is some gratuitous racism as well, considering that the only non-white character in the entire story is a black athletic coach at ESU who turns out to be one of the villains: He’s been using the aphrodisiac to seduce dozens and dozens of females in orgiastic fashion, including his own volleyball team (with his daughter being a member of the team), the college swim team, and also the cheerleading squad. He eventually gets his head blown off. (Again with the spoilers, because I shouldn’t really recommend that anyone actually play such a sinful and lascivious game.)

     At the risk of praising a computer porn game, I must admit that I am sincerely impressed by all the thought and work that went into making Lust Epidemic. It was a real labor of love, or at least of lust. Probably thousands of hours of work went into making this, apparently mainly by a single person—or anyway only one is taking credit for making it. Despite some exceedingly cheesy dialog, the story was intelligently worked out, and the game is genuinely challenging, even if one avails oneself of the optional hints.




     Aside from the various sexual encounters, the bulk of the game itself involves exploring the building and the surrounding area searching for keys, notes, and access codes which gain access to locked rooms, storage lockers, etc., and for tools to accomplish required tasks. For example at one point Brad (using a tool that he first had to find) disconnects some wires to turn off a security camera used by the guard, in order to gain access to a few forbidden areas. One side effect of this is that it also turns off the air conditioning, causing the women to unbutton their blouses to expose their magnificent cleav— eh, to better endure the heat and humidity. Later Brad is required to figure out how to reconnect wires to get the AC working again, in order to make points with the sultry nun, or rather Sister Katherine. There’s lots and lots of this kind of stuff. Another example: In order to get a bottle of wine to make points with Valerie, one must obtain the key to the pantry, but in order to get the key one must trade a compass for it with the security guard because he needs one; and in order to get the compass from horny Andy, you must trade it for a pair of freshly moistened feminine panties, which you must find…and so on. One other important find that one may encounter in one's searches is bottles of the concentrated aphrodisiac, the acquisition of which is usually followed by an erotic scene.

     I may as well add another big spoiler. The story, being the stuff of perverted adolescent fantasy fulfillment, features a very happy ending, if the player is skillful enough to reach it:—Brad winds up living in a mansion with a harem of attractive, receptive, buxom females and a lifetime supply of the aphrodisiac, or rather an improved version of it. And so they all live happily ever after in a virtual computer game version of a Buddhist (or maybe Islamic) heaven.

     Evidently the creator who takes credit for making the game is not a teenager himself, or necessarily very young (he claims to have worked in IT since the 1990’s); so an alternative to the Freudian juvenile wish fulfillment hypothesis might be that the creator himself, assuming he’s a guy, is fantasizing about screwing women he likes but with a younger body. I don’t know and probably never will, but the game does strike me as a golden example of juvenile fantasy.


try to tell me that this isn't Freudian


     I’m sure that, setting aside the cleverness of the game play, the graphics of the game are relatively crude by today’s standards, being free and created by one guy and all. I’m fairly sure that there are pay-to-play erotic games available on the Internet that have much more sophisticated and lifelike graphics. Some animated erotica that I have encountered is almost on a par with the animations produced by companies hired by big-budget movie studios. But still I was impressed.

     In some ways computer-generated virtual erotica is superior to reality, or recorded reality, partly because it can transcend the constraints of physical human biology and launch itself straight into the extremes of mating-instinct-inspired sexual ideals. A fifty-year-old woman can have a muscular hourglass figure and huge, shapely breasts that don’t sag to her belly, for example. On the other hand, such cheating of reality can warp male instincts with unnatural pleasures and desires, somewhat like those seagulls tricked by scientists to sit on huge fake eggs instead of their real ones because their instincts cause them to prefer sitting on the largest eggs.

     Even so, another way in which computer-generated lascivious beauties are relatively superior to real women in porn is that virtual women are not actually being abused, nor are they flinging themselves into some lower realm as professional sperm banks for men who don’t give a damn about them. The women in Lust Epidemic, regardless of their behavior or the name of the game, are literally without sin, unlike the actual humans who ogle them. The nun, for example, can pass for a real, “innocent,” “modest” nun, unlike the nuns in most porn videos with their painted fingernails, makeup, shaved pubic hair, the occasional tattoo or body piercing, and the standard slutty demeanor of porn actresses. (Sister Kat usually does keep her nun’s wimple on, though, even when otherwise naked, because we mustn’t forget that she is a nun.) The lust felt by men who look at these virtual beauties like Sister Katherine or Mrs. Bancroft is lust for a kind of ideal. Lust is still lust, but no actual adultery is committed in a male heart by the desire, since the ladies don’t really exist. The women, again, are phenomenally voluptuous as their creator has striven for some sort of feminine sexual perfection transcending worldly limitations. They are like ideal sex objects in Plato’s heaven, or like the holographic virtual nymphs allegedly inhabiting Buddhist heavens, or like the statues of Aphrodite (or maybe naked Hera) in ancient temples.

   


     Watching virtual people going about their virtual sex lives has had me thinking that in the near future there will likely be a new kind of Turing test passed by computers: Computer-generated animations will eventually become so realistic that people will no longer be able to tell the difference between virtual people and real actors and actresses. This could put a lot of real actors and actresses out of work; though it could also allow stars like the late John Wayne to make a comeback in show business. No doubt it will also lead to lawsuits against computer programmers who create virtual Scarlett Johanssons or Gal Gadots looking exactly like the originals to star in virtual hardcore porn movies.

     For many years I have considered writing an article comparing the benefits and disadvantages of sex with real women and of just ogling pornographic representations of them. Both do have their relative advantages and disadvantages. But if you’re lucky I’ll continue putting it off. This is more than enough for now anyway.



(again, slightly pixelated for your comfort)




BIG UPDATE

     Well you see, it’s like this: In the discussion above I omitted to state the actual family relation between Brad the protagonist and Valerie, his grey-haired elder love interest, mainly because it was unnecessary and a slightly awkward and unlikely plot element, but here goes. In the game as I played it, Valerie is the considerably older wife of Brad’s elder brother. Consequently they are members of the same family, and Val has known Brad since he was a boy. Hence the tender feelings towards each other from the beginning. BUT, in order to have the game fresh in my mind, and to pick up relevant information that I may have missed the first time, and also to challenge myself by playing it at hard level, I decided to play the game again (and at the time of writing this I’m about halfway through the second playing). AND, it turns out that there is an unofficial, “unauthorized” alternative version of the plot in which, yes indeed, Valerie really is Brad’s biological mother. This interpretation, though of course blatantly incestuous, makes more sense in explaining Brad’s and Val’s family relationship, and is probably the “real” plot, hidden as a way of getting past a censorious Patreon, or whatever. It also verifies my theory that the game is Oedipal in nature—that is, representing juvenile, more or less Freudian fantasies of a young male fucking his own mother. (Still, though, there is the mitigating factor for Brad and Val, if not for the player of the game, that they were under the inflaming and debauching influence of a very potent aphrodisiac.) I haven’t played the alternative version to the end, so I can’t say for sure, but I assume that in the alternate ending Val is the one woman whom Brad does not impregnate.

     Why the creator of the game decided to emphasize an adolescent boy seducing MILFs, including his own female parent, is something I don’t really understand. I doubt that such fantasies are extremely common among young males, though I could be wrong. Maybe young men today have significantly different fantasies than they had when I was a kid, when I might be lusting for some movie starlet or that girl in Biology class.

     Anyhow, my theory has been proved correct, so much of what I wrote above to support it is now superfluous; though my philosophical digressions, as well as the jiggly illustrations, remain meaty and pertinent.





pretty much every possible combination is exploited in this game


Comments

  1. While watching animated ideals of unreal women doing sexual acts might be considered somewhat more skillful due to no other party being harmed in the process I feel like not stamping out lust and not guarding the senses is a bit reckless. As a Cowherd you are not "plucking out the fly egg". Just my take...

    Let me ask, how does a man rid himself of this lust? As a layman I have to go about my day constantly bombarded with sights and sounds which trigger lust from time to time to various degrees. I use restraint but I would like to get beyond it totally. I have done the whole mediting on the foul and did some corpse watching and consider this form of a woman that I desire is nothing more than a bag of flesh full of all sorts of unclean things. While this triggers disgust momentarily I still find live women attractive from time to time.

    What is the deal to this lust? Is there something deeper and more esoteric to it? What is its principle cause?

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    1. Well, I've got bad news for you. It doesn't go away. It's built right into human nature. Maybe if you have outstanding spiritual talent, or are a fanatic with absolute 100% faith, or are 90 years old, then maybe. Otherwise, the best we can do is to be like someone with OCD: note the desire or whatever, and watch it.

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    2. Yes, I have noticed that it takes a great deal of endurance of strength to deal with the constant onslaught of the day to day sense impressions. That and then the guarding of the senses helps. I see why Monks go off into the woods and keep women at bay! Thanks.

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  2. Some ad hominems incoming:
    Of all the things you could have spend this attention on... you chose this? You would have benefited from reading Metaphysics of Sex (unless you did that already), to strengthen a higher perspective on sexuality.

    I don't even see how "politically incorrect" applies here, since this is just lack of inhibition and radical negation of the concept of "sin" and obviously the accompanying pleasure of sinning. There is a serious ambivalence in some murky waters (just as in the Jewish soul [not saying that you are a Jew, just saying...]) that forever oscillate rather pathetically between expiation and sin.

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    1. Well, I'm not much interested in expiation or sin. It is kind of odd, though, that the kind of stuff featured in that game is fairly similar to what Buddhism, and Islam also, holds out as a reward for a life well lived. But yeah, I figured that some of the more traditionalistic "alt-right" folks who dislike pornography and "sin" in general would not approve. This is not the first eroticism-based post I've posted, and it probably won't be the last; I throw one in occasionally because I'm a lustful person by nature and human sexuality is interesting to me, even though I decided long ago that dedicating one's life to it wasn't worth the trouble.

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    2. Being totally honest, I too have lust just like I'm sure pretty much every non enlightened person has to some degree. This seems kind of like the type of work Carl Jung talked about with the Shadow work of the consciousness. The religious people often see sin and run for the hills or put their head in a hole or guard their senses to prevent its arising. This is wise behaviour and most of the sages of the ancient days often warned their students of sensuality to protect them. However, sometimes there comes a point when one must face the defilements head on or at least test himself to see if they still have a hold. I have read your most recent post on meditation and get the sense that with all the strong work you have done with meditation and renunciation you are frustrated and I commend you for looking outside the box and facing defilement head on. I cannot say what your true intentions are but I will give you the benefit of the doubt. This blog is very interesting to me because you are the only Monk I know of who is so up front and brutally honest from his own base and perspective and not just another one trying to clone enlightenment. I read it because I am also very interested in causes and conditions and also because I am drawn to renouncing myself when the time comes. While I see where the last commentator is coming from also because such topics are highly jarring and abrupt to us hard right, ultraconservative, traditionalistic, and religious types. I came away after reading it wondering what was gained. And what I took from it was that these defilements are serious as shit! We wont beat them by kidding ourselves and maybe we need a warrior mindset to go head long into them. But if we do this we take a huge risk just like every warrior does. We better be honest and we better be cold with our higher faculties of intellect. We better be mindful of resultant feelings. We better be critical of our perceptions. We have to approach them in a austere way knowing what they are capable of. Watch our impulses when we engage such things because we are men not far removed from animal and to turn away from our higher faculties to indulge in impulse and instinct we render ourselves beasts. But, I tend to test myself too from time to time so I dont judge. Heck you even warned us at the beginning so who am I to complain... Meditation alone will not cure lust in my opinion. Only right view has the effect of crushing defilement. Coupling meditation practice with right view as the foundation is what purifies mind. Lots of contemplation of the words of those who know (lucky if you know one) and careful attention. It can be done! But now days all anyone talks about is breath meditation and people sit all day secluded from their senses getting into Jhana and wasting time. Those filthy defilements (anusara) lurk in the depths while the mind is calm and concentrated and the mind begins to believe it is pure. Then the senses slip up one day and an uneventful contact is made which opens the door to a flood of defilement. The meditator being addicted to his calm is shook and thus suffering. I would rather know what is there and then go into direct combat with it. Meditation is a tool but if it isnt used properly what is the point.... Just my opinion

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    3. Simply hiding from temptation is not the best strategy in the long run, because one may never learn how to face temptation. I've said many times that one weakness of modern monasticism is that monks stay in safe, more or less comfortable monasteries and thus aren't faced with many challenges which strengthen one's practice and mind. In the Buddha's time monks wandered homeless on the outskirts of a mostly non-Buddhist society, and so they were dealing with big challenges pretty often. That may have been as essential to Dhamma practice as sitting crosslegged and watching their breath.

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    4. Well, I see this behavior exemplifying expiation. Not talking about theoretical or theological frameworks here, but human behavior. Western people go East only to find themselves re-applying the Western (often Jewish and modernist) forms into Eastern spirituality. My claim about expiation did not refer to Christian framework; if I were to put it in other words, it would go: "You would not have made this post had it not been forbidden in Christian and Buddhist ethics." That expiation. That pleasure of sinning. Not some abstract "sin" against arbitrary laws - but actual sin, a rebellion against laws per se, regardless of the laws' content. A rebellion is always expiation. Had you not rebelled, you would not have made the post.

      Inmanus mentioned testing - this is in my view altogether wrong way of looking at things. Not doing something is not "escapism", choosing a wise place to live is not "escapism" (you have to live somewhere!) - actual escapism is this attitude where you rationalize expiation and rebellion as "testing". What is this - some empirical science now, where you need to gather evidence and proof? (Note: again Western materialistic spirituality encroaching)

      I wouldn't trust Jung or James on anything related to "religious" matters. Both had completely inverted hierarchy (Dhamma) as their starting point. For Jung it was the complete blindness to super-human (bodhi), attributing most in humans to subconscious (or collective unsconscious) and little to simple human consciousness. NOTHING to awakening of supra-human states.

      For William James religion was similarly nothing supra-human, nothing Dharmic, but only a tool - usefulness was its mere criterion of truth, just like for American pragmatists in general. I wouldn't be surprised had he also insisted on "proof" that the "temptations had been faced".

      I believe the criterion and goal for Buddhism is to recognize and develop the theme of awakening. Some like to call awakening "their true nature" - and I think it's a bit silly to insist that "no, that would make it Self! Awakening is not mine!". If a person sees themselves as being "lustful by nature" - then I don't understand how that would amount to anything but a pure negation of Dhamma. And the odd thing is, they believe themselves to be "realistic", seeing things "as they really are". A bit like Western scientists do.

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    5. It seems to me that your own attitude towards religion or spirituality or "dharma" is more Christian than mine. For example, in Buddhism there really is no concept of "sin." Buddhist ethics deals with skillful and unskillful actions, with the enlightened adept transcending the duality of good and evil. Expiation exists in monastic discipline, for example there are categories of ecclesiastical offenses that require expiation of a sort, but the expiation consists of simply reciting a Pali formula by way of confession which "unbreaks" the rule. My own attitude towards willful transgression is more along the lines of some Mahayana schools of thought. Take the Vimalakirti Nirdesa Sutra, in which an adept bodhisattva frequents taverns and brothels, yet is spiritually superior to the Buddha's chief disciples. (Although Vimalakirti is way beyond me, and I've never liked the sutra.)

      As for William James, the conclusion of his The Varieties of Religious Experience especially indicates that he was a mystic. He believed that true religion is inspired by an Absolute which lies beyond the veil of phenomenal appearance.

      I fail to see how considering myself or anyone else as being lustful by nature would be a "pure negation of Dhamma," especially considering that Buddhist philosophy acknowledges repeatedly that we are all motivated by greed, hate, and delusion, with lobha or "greed" often being replaced in the formula with rāga, which is usually rendered into English as "lust" or "passion." And different people, in accordance with their kamma, have different amounts of these influences. But if you can totally restrain all lustful urges, then more power to you.

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    6. "In East there is no sin" is just a meme of early orientalists. There is sin, which is simply that which goes against one's nature. Sure, it doesn't carry the same psycho-baggage as Abrahamic sin, and its content is sometimes quite different, but it's still there in form.

      Sin is just "that which is against hierarchy and truth". We shouldn't be as clueless about Christianity as Christians have been. Because on exoteric level the Christian concept of sin looks very different from adharmic or tamasic or anti-bodhic sattvas, but more profound understanding links sin directly to the concept of hierarchy and Dhamma.

      That which is according to Nature, and that which isn't.

      "Buddhist ethics deals with skillful and unskillful actions" That's exactly what sin is, unskillful action. In a theological framework it just means rebellion against God, because theists can't conceive anything above God - they can't conceive pure metaphysics or simply Hierarchy without this personal God.

      What comes to James, I don't doubt his mysticism. But it should be kept in mind that mysticism is that which is bound to exoteric domain, as mysticism is only subconscious and partly conscious. All mystics are by definition people who don't understand Dhamma, people who can't teach Dhamma and people who don't really understand their own "experiences" either. James was not suprarational, but subrational or rational.

      [Original Mystics who were part of Greater or Lesser mysteries - i.e. initiatic organizations, are another matter, they're not exoteric, and their "shutting the lips" had nothing to do with "mystical experiences" but rather about safeguarding and not profaning the initiatic Orders]

      There's a devil in the details. Dhamma sees the basic sattva of humans to be bodhi, or awakening. Puthujjanas are not motivated by greed, hate and delusion BY THEIR NATURE, but BY DELUSION. You are conflating delusion with Dhamma, that's why I said that seeing one's nature as lustful is pure negation of Dhamma.

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    7. Well, it is not easy to discuss Dhamma with a layman who is convinced that he understands Dhamma much better than I do (or most monks do for that matter).

      If you want to avoid dragging Christianity into Dhamma, I would suggest that you not drag peculiarly Christian terms like "sin" into the discussion. But at present I see little point to continue debating this.

      As for the wild claim that "All mystics are by definition people who don't understand Dhamma," what the hell is the definition you are referring to? Mysticism by my definition is awareness of reality transcending perceptual constructs, and so realization of Ultimate Truth would necessarily be mystical.

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    8. "If you want to avoid dragging Christianity into Dhamma, I would suggest that you not drag peculiarly Christian terms like "sin" into the discussion."

      That would be unwise, because Christianity has dominated the West for the past two millenia. As much as the West has been following Truth for the past two thousand years, they have been following Dhamma, regardless of their terminology.

      I don't think I could explain mysticism any better than René Guénon in his work Perspectives on Initiation, chapter 1: https://archive.org/stream/reneguenon/1946%20-%20Perspectives%20on%20Initiation%20#page/n11/mode/2up

      Dhamma can be taught and mystics cannot teach it:
      "Today the esoteric or initiatic domain and the mystical domain – or, if one prefers, their respective points of view – are often confused [...]. it is currently the fashion so to speak among those with limited horizons to construe all Eastern doctrines as 'mystical', including those that lack even a semblance of the outward aspects that could justify such an attribution [...]. [...] in everything pertaining to initiation there is really nothing vague or nebulous, for on the contrary it is as precise and 'positive' as can be, so that initiation by its very nature is in fact incompatible with mysticism."

      Mysticism is less compatible with Buddhism than sin, because sin can easily be regarded as unskillful action, whereas mysticism doesn't correspond to anything that pertains to Buddhism:

      "We have observed that the confusion leading some people to see mysticism where there is not the faintest trace of it results from the tendency to reduce everything to Western points of view, mysticism properly speaking being exclusively Western and, what is more, specifically Christian."

      Mysticism is characterized by passivity and lack of clarity, whereas activity (not being subject to suffering) and clarity is the very definition of awakening:

      "In the case of mysticism the individual simply limits himself to what is presented to him and to the manner in which it is presented, having himself no say in the matter;"

      In other words, mysticism is like being in a state of sleep, seeing dreams but having no say in the matter.

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    9. It seems pretty obvious to me that you are not a mystic, and have not had a mystical experience that you have integrated into your understanding of reality. I say that Buddhism began as an attempt at PURE MYSTICISM, i.e. the experience of ultimate reality directly, without the intermediary of symbolic thought. To say that "mysticism is like being in a state of sleep" is nonsense. Some say the same about Nibbana. It is a state of superconsciousness if it is genuinely mystical. (Sometimes I say that the closest the average person comes to mysticism is when he is in the middle of a sneeze: wide awake and not thinking anything.) Symbolic thought is limited because it is focused on one object at the expense of all else. Mystical experience is wide open and all-inclusive, with the mind clear as glass. But again, your interpretation of Buddhism is so far out and based on western thinkers that meaningful debate is almost a non-starter.

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    10. Well, at least we agree that I'm not a mystic. But I fail to see which of my interpretations are Western? I quoted Guénon, who is perhaps the most "Eastern" of all Western thinkers ever lived - and more Eastern than most (if not all) Eastern people alive today - certainly more Eastern than Sri Lankans like Coomaraswamy.

      Isn't that "experiencing of ultimate reality directly" just Western immanence?
      I already quoted and pointed you to a direction where it is explained how mysticism is specifically Western, and now you even claim that Buddhism began as "PURE MYSTICISM"...?

      Your example of sneezing is telling: I could hardly conceive of anything more conditioned than sneezing, anything less awakened. It's like you're referring to intensity of emotions in consciousness or involuntariness (something which mystics indeed experience a lot) and calling that being awake? Quite frankly I call that being fully conditioned, fully suffering, fully asleep. We do agree that sneezing exemplifies "not thinking anything"...

      "Mystical experience is wide open and all-inclusive, with the mind clear as glass."
      This is also telling. Indeed, mystical experience is wide open and all-inclusive to subrational, subhuman influences. Jung called it "collective unconscious", but whatever you call it, that's a maze where neospiritualisms of various kind go to lose their footing and sometimes literally the participants lose themselves and get subsumed in the collective. This is precisely the goal of anti-tradition, and precisely the negation of Dhamma. If you don't make the careful distinction between UP and DOWN, lower realm of human individuality and collective psychic residues (=mysticism), and upper realm of awakening and intellectual intuition, then you will forever stay trapped in Western (also Eastern now, unfortunately) way of thinking. It should be noted that the East didn't fall into Western thinking because of some intellectual exchange of ideas, but because whatever is degenerated - in whatever remote Eastern village - is always Western, because Western is just another word for primitive and degenerated. Things like Australian aboriginals are Western phenomena, just like pandemic asceticisms, quietisms, mysticisms, pantheisms and theisms now prevalent all around India are Western.

      Anyway, to conclude and answer another remark of yours... Rational thought can conceive symbols in a limited way, but suprarational intellectual intuition can conceive them fully. So you shouldn't limit "symbols" only to human realm either, and even less to subconscious (=subhuman) realm, where they are usually limited to by psychoanalysts.

      I agree we probably shouldn't keep this discussion going. We seem to have very much opposed premised. My bottom line is that medieval Europe fearful of sin was closer to Dhamma than modern Buddhists who delude themselves with thoughts of overcoming and "testing". Hillside Hermitage (if not most buddhists) also seem to teach that. Sexuality is out of the question, period. Anything else is deluded.

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    11. Oh gawd. If you have never experienced a clear mystical experience, then you are speaking in abject ignorance of the nature of mysticism. Eastern spirituality much more than western is based on what I call mysticism. (Brahman in the Upanishads, for instance, is defined as formless, infinite consciousness.) Also, advanced ethics in Buddhism is psychological, based on mental states, not outward actions. But this is becoming a waste of my time, so you can have the last word if you like.

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    12. "Clear mystic" experience is a contradiction in terms. I've had mystic experiences and then clear experiences.

      Psychology belongs to subconscious, and ethics belong to rational domain. Most esoteric schools belong to neither (which does not mean that sexuality becomes any more relevant, in fact it becomes even less relevant)

      Quite bold to call this a waste of your time, when I have spend dozens of hours watching your interviews and partaking in various discussions about your worldview. It's really a shame how this site pops up for most common search words relating to Evola's Doctrine. I should have listened to my first insticts a year ago, and multiple warnings of monks from various traditions. If you had any consistency you would disrobe and continue your "advanced ethics" without the authority of the robes.

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    13. I would point out , as an older man who (naturally enough) has sex with older women, that older women, like older men, are not built like 19 year olds with grey hair. there is a huge disconnect here between the fantasy and reality. The cartoon Metalocalypse has a character with the "paraphilia" of going for older women, and at least there the women are depicted more realistically....

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    14. I would point out that the older women in the fantasy game aren't really built like 19 year olds either. There's some kind of apotheosis going on, with women becoming more extraordinarily, curvaceously, divinely Junoesque as they get older. There appears to be a direct correlation between maturity and voluptuousness.

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