Have you ever read the book, Perelandra, by C.S. Lewis? The author of The Chronicles of Narnia?
Perelandra was the second book in his science fiction/fantasy trilogy.
In Perelandra, the hero, Elwin Ransom, is sent to the planet Perelandra (Venus) to protect the newly created inhabitants from the evil influence of a monomaniacal physicist named Weston. Weston’s mission is to get one of the two Perelandrians to disobey God. It is a replay of the temptation in the Garden of Eden but this time God has his own agent in place to counteract the devil’s temptation – Ransom.
For a good portion of the book Weston argues with the Woman (who is separated from her husband), reasoning with her that God wants her to disobey Him so that she can grow into a truly free and independent person. Ransom counters each of these arguments well but is unable to completely convince the Woman to stop listening to Weston. The result is the Woman is left teetering precariously between the two choices: obey or disobey: which is right? which is best?
And Weston just will not stop! Day after day he comes to the Woman, arguing, reasoning, trying to teach her vanity and pride, but always returning to the argument that God wants her to grow into an independent person in control of her own destiny.
Even Ransom believes God wants that. . .just not through disobedience. Can the Woman understand the distinction?
The Woman continues to resist the devil’s influence. She argues back and forth with Weston, defending God’s command and the necessity of her obedience to it. But after so many days her resistance is weakening.
She’s running out of self-control!
So what happens next?
Ransom comes to an amazing conclusion: The woman has made her choice. Over and over again she has chosen to not disobey God, chosen to reject the temptations of Weston.
Ransom decides that is enough. Now Weston needs to be gone.
But how? They are both trapped on the planet without a means of leaving.
Ransom decides his only option is to kill Weston himself. And the next portion of the book encompasses their fight to the death.
This all reminds me of the Scripture, I Corinthians 10:13:
“No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”
What is the way of escape from your particular temptation?
It could be the Porn Cure Protocol (PCP) you learned in The Once Minute Cure for Porn Addiction. It could be The Swish or maybe Focusing with an Open Brain. It may be the Porn Reprocessing Technique or perhaps it’s just to notice it, actively observing your inner experience without feeling compelled to act on it. Or perhaps the answer is as simple as changing your mindstate from one of reactivity and fear to one of receptivity and openness.
What exactly are all these techniques and procedures? Are they just silly mind games designed to distract you and me from the reality of our daily experience? Are they, as my ex-wife would call them, nothing more than mental masturbation? My standard for judging anything like these is whether they work or not.
Do they work? We’ll have to wait and see.