Not very attractive when you describe a body that way, is it? We are reminded of this reality over and over again in our books but it never truly sticks. Why is it so?
When we look at our own bodies we know what they are made of and very few of us are proud of what we got. Sometimes we look into mirrors and like what we see but it requires an effort and a mirror. On our own we might like our skin but we get enough zits and blisters over the course of our life to know that even the most beautiful skin is not what it seems. Several times a day we get calls of nature and we don’t like what comes out of our bodies at all. Everybody also knows what pus is, it’s not pretty, and if we forget what pus feels like, everyday we have the smell of sweat that we can’t fully hide from ourselves.
In short – we’ve been grossed out by our bodies often enough to be aware of their nature. Why do we assume that other bodies are any better just because they belong to the opposite sex?
In fact, I’ve met several women who were very aware of natural shortcomings of their bodies and who couldn’t truly understand why men find them so attractive. Not that it stopped them from manipulating their prey.
On the surface it seems very easy – you know what the body is made of, it’s not attractive, so stop being attracted to it. It’s unnatural to be attracted to urine and pus and all the other things so stop it.
When we are attracted to the opposite sex we don’t see the grossness of their bodies at all, it goes straight past us and disappears totally unnoticed. We do not get attracted to bones, marrow and fat, we get attracted to some idea in our heads that has little to do with reality. How to stop that from happening? This idea is not related to bones either, it comes from somewhere else.
If you tell someone who is smitten by a girl that her shit stinks they wouldn’t even hear you. You can preach all you want about the reality, they become transcendental to it. You can preach all you want to yourself, too, it won’t stop you from being in love.
It’s not the lack of knowledge that causes us to fall in love, it’s something else. Perhaps instead of trying to see the body for what it is we should study love and infatuation and how they work to put us under their spell.
Sometimes they say it’s just lust. Not true, imo. Lust plays its part and it might be at the core of our existence but people in love are not particularly lascivious, not in the beginning, in fact they feel some sort of a barrier to expressing their feelings physically, they feel that sex is inadequate to express their love, they feel it’s much more than just physical actions. Eventually it goes away but in the beginning it’s definitely there.
Science has a pretty convincing explanation how hormones work and it might help us to see things more clearly when we feel attraction to opposite sex but what we need as devotees is the shastric version and, afaik, it doesn’t exist. We have this description of a human body and so far I’ve traced it to the teachings of some king AFTER he got dumped. My point is that we need different lessons when we fall in love and when we suffer from break ups, “pus lesson” is for break ups, we needs lessons for falling in love.
The only way that I know from our books is staying away from the opposite sex altogether. Of course these days everybody gets married so people might say that staying away doesn’t work, but it’s the injunction for married men, too. We should stay away from all temptations with all females. Anyone who could remind us of association with women should be outside our circles. No movies, not popular culture, no female “friends”, nothing. What more, we should not associate even with men who are attracted to women, so no male friends either.
Senses cannot be pacified by bringing them in contact with their objects, only by withdrawing them. There’s no such thing as “little harmless sense gratification”. It all starts with very little and then it grows and this growth can’t be checked, you’ll just see yourself rolling with it until you hit a wall.
So what about our wives then? I don’t know. Approaching them only for procreation should help but no one does that these days so there’s no way to confirm it. In the entire ISKCON there are probably only a handful of couples who stay with their grihastha vows like brahmachari stay with theirs, and I don’t know their names and no one is sure how long they can keep doing this. The situation appears to be completely hopeless.
So yeah, not very inspirational, I know, but that’s the reality of it.