Lust

Lust is a state of conditioning where we seek temporary indiscriminate sexual connections to minimize the loss of our Self-loving connection to the universe. Lust is how we seek agreement from others for our sexual fantasies by getting them to conform to us. The immediacy of Lust comes from the perspective that our current energy and feelings are what matters and that other concerns only minimize our authentic expression or desire for experience. Usually, past denial of sensations and/or feelings makes the temptation for immediate sexual expression undeniable. Ironically, we feel drawn into the process to the degree we feel validated for who we are, which, upon reflection, actually reflects the other’s need for us to be present for them. Lust only completely works if both partners are blinded to their lack of authentic creative connection. In Lust, we glorify an animal nature that allows us to feel instinctively connected, but this connection is mostly a fantasy about the other person rather than a genuine connection to the real person. The paradox here is that the attachment to our attractions exists mainly in our fantasy world, and may not actually exist in the real world. This means that, in effect, we make up how we feel attracted to the other person so we can feel connected. This is also why after becoming sexual; we frequently are shocked when we begin to see the unattractive aspects of our partner that were denied by our fantasies.

When we become consciously connected to our Self, we are no longer attached to our physical persona in a way that creates neediness, which drives us into unconscious sexual expression. When we do not feel the sense of completeness and wholeness that comes from conscious connection to our Self, we try to offset the loneliness and pain of feeling separate through the pursuit of pleasure, setting ourselves up to be hurt in our sexual interactions with others. Let us embrace our deeper connection to our Self, allowing ourselves to honor and experience our feelings and sensation as they are. When we honor our inner experience as it is, we will no longer be driven to connect with others in ways that are fantasy-based and which deny current reality. This will allow us to move into the unifying experience of mutual Aliveness and move out of the dualistic experience of Excitement.

Lust is projected most powerfully if we are also doing Greed and Arrogance. Lust is a desire to objectify and possess another because we do not feel able to be present with ourselves. The more we operate in creative denial, the more we believe we need Lust to connect with others, however superficially. Ironically, when we operate in a state of Lust, we are unable to have any true creative connection with our partner because our idea of them and their idea of us is in conflict. Instinctively we fall into roles that guarantee the procreation of the species. Unconscious conditioning (reflected by isolation) overcomes fair reasoning and we are frequently later left wondering why we choose this partner in the first place. The answer is that our choice of sexual partner(s) (when we are in a state of Excitement) reflects a “special” opportunity to be seen, heard and valued; a value previously denied us by our parents and temporarily (at least) reflected in this partner.

When we get caught up in Lust, we want others to be as Excited with us as much as we wanted our parents to stimulate us, but did not. How parents did or did not accept or affirm us becomes the need to be reassured and validated by our partner. This is what they use to hook us. Ironically, the more we do not feel seen, heard and valued by the parent substitutes, the more it can trigger our Excitement and Lust, because it becomes a challenge to get what was previously denied. Since many of us become dissociated about our real needs, we seek out love substitutes in the superficial behaviors and appearances of potential partners. Our beliefs about certain individuals become the basis for building expectations that we believe will predict safe partner choices. As Lust requires mutual agreement (usually a pursuer and the pursued) we must first agree about the roles. This dialog allows us to explore our common attraction to the other. Without this titillation process, we cannot build the energy required to fulfill our Lust. These instinctive attraction frameworks are formed by the associations we have made with certain physical characteristics, which we believe make us feel Safe and Secure. Lust creates the illusion that we are each operating in a Safe way.

We can see Lust in others when they become fixated on our outer appearance. This means individuals operating in Lust feel safer being around people who mesh with their unconscious, idealized projections. Others will respond positively to our Lust to the degree that they feel alone and unseen, needing reassurance and affirmation of their own humanity. It is interesting to notice that Lust is a temporary satisfaction at best, which constantly needs reassurance and support. We commonly see Lust in people who are disconnected and not tuned into what is going on around them. In doing Lust, we use Excitement and fantasy-building imagination to create a connection, rather than seeing and accepting others where they are. This is why we are often later upset when we realize that the other person did not really understand or appreciate us for who we are.

In the motive of Lust, we operate from the context of believing that narcissistic, anonymous sex is all we need to feel connected. We seek temporary indiscriminate sexual connections to minimize the lack of creative self-love we experience. Lust reflects the underlying fear of our nothingness because no one actually sees us as we are. Another fear reflects our jealousy that others are going to get something we will not. The underlying fear about Lust is the issue of objective possession as the only way to experience Lust. We get objectified in the objectification of others. We believe that a physical and/or emotional interaction will somehow empower us to better connect with who we are, when in fact does the opposite. This is why many of our sexual experiences drive us, through the process of titillation, to constant sexual activity until we are exhausted. One of the challenges of Lust is that we falsely believe that the more detached we are, the greater our choices and options with others will be. We find ourselves needing to act as if everything about us is attractive in the hopes that others will find us attractive. As a result, we overdo our interest in others to maintain the option of choosing them as sexual partners in the future, even though we may not really find them all that attractive. We can see Lust in others by the bombastic, demanding way in which they wish to be engaged, while we can sense inwardly that they are very needy and disconnected.

We heal Lust by honoring our own natural attractiveness. This requires that we step away from objectifying others be being consciously present. When we see higher possibilities in others, we will naturally begin to see and accept the higher possibilities in ourselves. Let us imagine we no longer need to pretend to be attractive to attract others. Let us imagine that there are people who are naturally attracted to us and to whom we could be naturally attracted. One of the easiest ways to do this is to seek out people with whom we have an enthusiastic and passionate connection, but without too much Excitement. This is because Excitement reflects incomplete parental lessons that keep us in a state of anticipation and fear as to whether or not we will ultimately be accepted. We heal Lust when we no longer feel driven to perform and can accept our physical appearance without accentuating physical characteristics we think will make us attractive or ignoring those we do not.

Let us recognize that in our experience, Lust keeps us from being connected in the deeper ways we actually long for. Can we relax into a more natural way of being with each other? Imagine connecting in a new way that is more creative, open and available. Let us commit to being consciously present with others when we are sexual with them, instead of falling into unconscious reassurance patterns where we act out our animal desires. Can we be with ourselves enough to consciously connect with others? Could this be a pleasurable experience? Do we need attention, fear and fantasy to distract us from the potential downsides in this relationship? If so, we may not be in the right relationship. If we connect and experience the pain of their self-rejection expressed as Lust, we will likely no longer be interested in pursuing the relationship if they cannot be present to us.

Let us imagine being attractive enough on deeper levels that would innately provide the space and willingness to explore the relationship in a conscious manner. Let us engage in a way that truly allows us to flow and be clear about our individual experiences so we can consciously co-create a larger loving experience. This requires us to be respectful about our mutual desires. It requires us to be committed to seeing our own goodness, especially as we experience it in our interactions with others. As we accept our own natural Playfulness and exploration process, we no longer see ourselves purely on physical terms where we fear others will not find us attractive. Instead, let us experience our natural beauty and handsomeness both internally and externally so we no longer need to be attached to the superficial attractions or repulsions of others.

We can begin to see how these attractions and repulsions are actually a reflection of our fears and conditioning. When we acknowledge how following these patterns keeps us from growing beyond our fears it becomes more apparent that engaging our repulsions can teach us a tremendous amount about ourselves. Let us endeavor to heal our past anger, pain and rejections so we no longer need to distance ourselves from others. Let us learn to be present with our fears of rejection so we do not need to impose ourselves on others to experience the tension of exciting sex. When we allow ourselves to be thankful for past rejections it reveals how several of the choices previously made were not actually in alignment with our creative nature. Examining our rejections may reveal how we were previously rejecting ourselves. Instead of continuing to abandon ourselves in our sexual connections, let us find a way to learn our deeper truth about how we are not connecting to our creative nature. Let us learn how to accept our anger and creatively engage it by constructively sharing our pain with our potential partners in ways that clarify our current choices. In other words, let us see how this pain can now inform us of better choices rather than refusing to learn from each connection.

The three belief structures of Romance, Motives, and Love particularly support us operating in Lust because we are able to distance our self from the relationship choices we are making. By using the romantic caretaking tactic, we are able to seduce others into believing we care about them. If we really do not care about them, it preserves the option as to whether or not to get sexual with them. Seduction requires that we intellectually manipulate the circumstances to provide the illusion that we care. All we really want is to explore the potential of whether or not we are attracted to this person. When we operate in a seductive way, we believe we are protecting our self, when in fact we are denying any authentic feelings. As long as we maintain the potential to idealize a person’s appearance, we can use Lust to promote an unconscious sexual response without feeling responsible for what occurs. Lust allows us to concentrate on certain aspects of our partner so as to prevent us from engaging the larger possibilities of who they are.

It is our preoccupation with our own image and others’ response to us, that keeps us from seeing our own selfish animalistic nature. What we unconsciously seek is titillation and fantasy that will never end. This requires that we do not upset the status quo by attempting to make it real if it will diminish our fantasy. The titillation is always about how others will see us in the way we wish to be

seen. While we of course will have a physical and feeling response to this experience, it is most critical that we believe that they want us, particularly when they do not. When we are in lust, we see
ourselves through the eyes of others. This creates a sense of expansion because we do not experience the self-condemnation or self-denial we typically experience. The illusion of their vision of us, while seductive, does provide us a sense of power in our ability to influence others. As long as they believe they need us, we have the power to influence them to fulfill our needs. Since we do not take responsibility for fulfilling our own needs, it is easy to fall into the trap of believing that the only way to succeed is to manipulate others to do it for us.

The real issue is that we feel disconnected from our body and so do not accept our own sensations and feelings as they are. We either try to over-possess and over-define our sensations and feelings by losing ourselves in them completely or we feel unable to grasp them at all. In effect, there is no “us” in the experience. We have lost ourselves in the experience to the extent that we do not feel we could recreate it at will. Any conscious experience can be recreated within ourselves at our choosing. The irony is that is hard to distinguish between the memory of an experience and the true experience. It is the denial of parts of our experience that drives us to try to recreate past incomplete experiences. If we were able to complete some of these experiences, we would no longer be attached to them. This is greatly amplified if we grew up in a religious environment where our sensations and feelings were judged as animalistic and unclean. As a result, we have a lot of incomplete or disowned sensations and feelings that reflect our guilt about our desires. It is ironic that judging our self in this way only reinforces the disconnection we experience with our body and reinforces our neediness.

Lust denies us. When we are unconscious, we vacillate between two extremes. The first is to artificially pretend to be attracted and to use our physique and personality characteristics to amplify whatever desire others feel about us. In this way, we attract attention to see what they really want and determine if we really want it, too. In this process, it is easy to get lost in our own detachment and become jaded and hardened to any true responsiveness within us. The second is to reinforce our naiveté and innocence by letting ourselves become infatuated that our partner will release us from our unconscious, self-inflicted pain. We want them to connect to our fantasy so they will operate in exactly the way we think would affirm us. Usually this reflects how we were discounted, denied, or misunderstood in previous relationships. When others fulfill these apparent requirements, it gives us permission to surrender to the process. In effect, their affirmation of us keeps us from being critical about the choice we are making. Each time we seek a more sophisticated way of validating their love of us. What we want is to be convinced (through their Lust for us) that we will not be hurt again. If they can do this, even in the short term, it allows us to accept whatever pleasure we receive.

It is the repression we have experienced in our upbringing around physical sensations and feelings that reinforces the idea that we have to choose between these two extremes. Unconsciously, we operate believing in the scarcity of pleasure and typically will do anything to avoid the pain of our everyday existence. We also believe we deserve whatever pleasure we can get because our everyday life is dull and unfulfilling. The more repressed we have been about the choices we made sexually, the more likely we are to fall into patterns of Lust, so we can believe we really had no choice. We can validate this by considering how much we justify whether the choices we made fulfilled our bodily needs. Whenever we say our body needs to have some connection, it is because we have denied our creativity and other higher ways of connecting with others. This leads us to believe we need sex as a way to feel balanced within our self.

It is part of our inner design that when we are disconnected from our Creative Self, our biology drives us to confront our repression by being more sexually active. Our healing process, therefore, is to learn to be more present with our body sensations and their reflected feelings so we are able to fully experience pleasure without being attached to it in any way. This is why more sex is sometimes not more fulfilling. What we really are seeking is a quality experience that refines, uplifts, and supports us in being creatively who we are. Most of the time, our Lust propels us into unconscious patterns where we are unable to assimilate the experience and so feel more incomplete, unfulfilled, and empty than ever. The more conscious we become about this process, the easier it is to see how one partner needs to believe their infatuation with us will make this relationship different than their previous ones. Usually, the other partner is unwilling to contribute and protects their self so they do not have to be present simultaneously in sensations and feelings. For Lust to be an ongoing process, these two patterns need each other.

Lust is commonly thought of as a hunger or craving for self-indulgent, sexual connection. This reflect its true purpose, which to ensure the continuation of the species by providing a mechanism that guarantees an interest in reproductive behavior. If would be healing to view it in the opposite way, that of preventing authentic, conscious connection so we can appreciate our actual choice to sexually connect. Ultimately, what we really want is to be seen and accepted without making our interactions a performance. We do not want others to love us for what we do or do not do, but rather who we are and how we are energetically able to consciously meet each other. One issue that arises is how many attractions are externally condemned by society in a way that keeps us from even exploring our inner Truth about our attractions. It also leads to reactive behavior whereby we have to prove our partner can accept our attraction(s), even if society will not do so. Many Western religions see Lust as a corruption of temperance and, therefore, condemn it as a vice. The problem is we have to own our Lust and see it as part of our humanity in order to transcend its corrupting influence.

Another paradox about Lust is that our distancing from our self makes us more susceptible to believing the superficial appearances of others over our own inner knowing. Most of the time we realize that something is not aligned, but we make excuses and deny our inner knowing in order to maintain connections with people who may have the potential to fulfill us. From both points of view, Lust is more about maintaining the illusion of our availability so we will not have to confront the reality that we no longer want to be responsible for the sexual choices in our life. Instead, it is easier to fall into cultural beliefs about destiny and fate than to actually believe in our natural ability to attract someone that can meet us. This is why people want to know about the degree of our Lust we had for our partner when we first met them. It is easy to believe this passion reflects the maximum degree of responsiveness and responsibility we can have in our life. We carefully preserve the illusion that we are available by focusing on maintaining our outer appearances so we will not have to confront our inner fears and our doubts that we really have the capacity to create and maintain a quality relationship.

The paradox is that, when we are lectured about our responsibility, we feel others are judging our lack of responsibility. It is hard for us to hear that others have an interest and desire to affirm our attractions. These attractions, both external and internal, are part of us. They reflect our learning process. The judgments and interpretations of others distance us from affirming our full attractions. We end up holding back our Truth about what is attractive to us in many circumstances because others will likely misinterpret it. This is why so many are caught up in short-term sexual interactions. The real problem is it reinforces our conditioning that we will be condemned for some attractions. From this perspective, it is easy to see that even showing our attractions to others is risky. Their response to us, even a lustful one, is appreciated because it is better than the alternative, which is rejection.

Underlying this attachment to our image is the narcissistic view that our physical or personality image is what makes us attractive to others. As it is continually reinforced in our society, many people grow up believing their potential partner possibilities are completely defined by their physical appearance. This creates the perspective that our attraction must be mutual, effortless, and a matter of “chemistry.” What this promotes is the illusion that we are our biology and that we will continually seek out partners who will reinforce our pursuit of pleasure. This is reflected in how we operate in the world. Either we are our biology and cannot control ourselves when fate intervenes or we are more than our biology and can consciously see the down side and the cost to current relationships when we break our agreements. When we make the narcissistic choice of choosing our animal desires over our creative definition of who we are, we are untrustworthy to both ourselves and to our partners. The conscious point of view where we can acknowledge our attractions and not feel compelled to act on them reflects that we are operating beyond our conditioning and past repression.

Healing ourselves requires us to learn how to be present with pleasure so that we no longer have to seek it. This means we must develop a conscious relationship with our sensations and feelings and accept that others cannot define or limit our experience. One of the major issues is the condemnation of masturbation. When we come to see that our experience reflects our Truth and that we have an obligation as a co-creator in the world to participate fully, we will no longer wait for others to complete us. Making this shift requires us to engage the possibility that we can interpret our experience in a way that supports our growth. We must accept that we could be overdoing our pursuit of pleasure as well as repressing it. This means we must learn to keep a balance between under- and over-doing it so as to our understanding of ourselves is maximized. This way it becomes obvious that, while repression does not work, over-satiation equally diminishes our consciousness. The true purpose of attractions is to invite us to explore our experience more deeply without becoming lost in the process.

The more conscious we become, the more we see and experience the subtlety of our sensations. The important thing is not to become attached to the pleasure. Any attachment soon becomes an anticipation that mentally reduces and distances us from the pleasure that is present. Sensations are subtle energies that reflect both an expansion and an ownership of our experience or a contraction or denial of it. Pain is an indication we are not being present to some sensation. Pleasure is an indication we have something we need to understand in the experience. Feelings are reflections of our sensations and help us to define them. When we are no longer trying to control pain or limit our feelings, it lets us learn from what is happening. We are able to organize our experience in ways that serve our growth. The paradox is that, when we detach from pain and are repulsed by certain types of feelings, we get stuck in a partial experience that we then seek to recreate as a way to heal ourselves. Until we appreciate the balance between under- and over-experiencing a situation, we cannot authentically grow.

The hidden denied belief is the default assumption that we operate from when we are unconscious. This reflects the worst-case scenario where we are self-identified with our physical and feeling needs and operate from our presumptions about what is occurring. This has been called, in spiritual traditions, Maya, because it reflects a complacency and acceptance of the superficial over the deeper motivations and forces at work. It is easier to reaffirm our beliefs in what we want to see than to examine our own issues and the issues of our partner in their complexity. The core issue is the sloth and laziness that frequently occurs when we go into fantasy-based relationships. Our unwillingness to confront the complexities of circumstances guarantees that we will attract and deal with only those options that mirror these outer concerns. For example, if we are unwilling to accept that we create our own pleasure in our life, it is likely that we will only attract people that cannot accept pleasure in their life. This complementary denial promotes a tremendous amount of titillation about what we want but a complete inability to grasp and be fulfilled by it.

The challenge is to be able to be present with our sensations and feelings to the degree that we can accept the sensations and feelings of others without being swept away in the process. In other words, we need to be able to be present with our own sensations and feelings so that the sensations and feelings of others will complement but not deny or distort our own experience. Being present with another is a consciousness raising experience. It reflects that we have mastered the ability to be present in our own experience. Many individuals become scared and shut down when presented this opportunity. This is because they have adopted a motive of lust where they seek sex as a way to affirm themselves rather than honor who they are creatively. Conscious individuals are able to be present with their own experience and therefore see themselves as authors of the interpretation of their own experience. This means that the experience of others can enrich their interpretation but will not primarily affect their interpretation.

The key is to learn how to be present with ourselves so we can be present with our partners. This means that we need to step beyond the lustful distancing and fantasy building that occurs and see the natural beauty and unique attractiveness of the person we are with on all levels. Instead of objectifying the partner, we need to be able to affirm their creative uniqueness energetically with us. This means that we have to let go of artificial ways we enhance our instinctive process to seek pleasure and affirm that it is our creative connection that is the source of our true attraction to each other. These artificial ways are substitutes for the actual experience of love that we use to convince ourselves that others love us. Sometimes it is the way that an individual is sexual with us, other times it is a physical attribute that makes it possible for us to desire them.

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© Copyright 2016, Larry Byram. All Rights Reserved.

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