|• Main||• Contacts|
and yet for years he had been a constant sufferer from nocturnal
emissions until his manhood was nearly lost, evidently the result of
the mental onanism which he had practiced without imagining the
possibility of harm.
But it is not true that control of the thoughts is impossible. Thoughts
are the result of the action of the brain; and the action of the brain
may be controlled as well as the movements of a voluntary muscle. It
may be more difficult, especially when the resolution is weakened, as
it is by this vice; but so long as there are left any remnants of will
and reason, control is possible. To strengthen the will must be one
of the objects of mental treatment, and exercise is the method by which
it may be accomplished. The thing for a sufferer to say, is not, "I
can't," but, "I can and I will control my thoughts." Suggestions which
will aid in accomplishing this have already been given under the heading,
"Cure of the Habit."
We cannot forbear to add a word further respecting the worth of religion
in aiding these sufferers. If there is any living creature who needs
the help of true religion, of faith in God, in Christ, and in the
efficacy of prayer, it is one of these. If there is any poor mortal
who can not afford to be deprived of the aid of a sympathizing Saviour,
it is one who has enervated his will, degraded his soul, and depraved
his body by the vile habit of self-abuse. A compassionate Redeemer will
succor even these defiled ones, if they truly "hunger and thirst" after
purity, and if they set about the work of reforming themselves in good
earnest, and with right motives.
Exercise.--Physical exercise is a most powerful aid to pure thoughts.
When unchaste ideas intrude, engage at once in something which will
demand energetic muscular exercise. Pursue the effort until fatigued,
if necessary, making, all the while, a powerful mental effort to control
the mind. Of course, evil thoughts will not be expelled by thinking
of them, but by displacing them by pure thoughts. Exercise aids this
Exercise is also essential to balance the circulation, and thus relieve
congestion of internal organs. Sedentary persons especially need
systematic exercise. No single form of exercise is so excellent as
walking. Four or five miles a day are none too many to secure a proper
amount of muscular exercise. Gymnastics, the "health-lift," "Indian
clubs," "dumb-bells," rowing, and other forms of exercise are all good;
but none of them should be carried to excess. Ball-playing is likely
to be made a source of injury by exciting, in vigorous competition,
too violent and spasmodic action.
Daily exercise should be taken to the extent of fatigue. It is better
that those who are still strong enough should have some regular
employment which will secure exercise. Those who prefer may secure
exercise and recreation in the pursuit of some study that involves
necessary physical exertion; as, botany, geology, or entomology. The
collection of natural-history specimens is one of the most pleasant
diversions, and may be made very useful as well.
Page 4 from 6: Back 1 2 3  5 6 Forward