On top of no orgasms and enthusiastic obedience to all my Lady's whims, I was not allowed any porn, and I had to ask permission to use any kind of erotic media. To facilitate this, I blocked all reddit images, and I set my search preferences to "moderate safe-search". Despite my long-running habit of neotantric ejaculation-free self love, I abstained from even that, just to be on the safe side.
By the end of the week, I felt exhilarated, liberated and excited. Women on the street appeared more sexy. Beauty appeared more intense. My Lady was an adorable, unfathomably and dangerously beautiful goddess, even moreso than she always is. The need for bare breasts evaporated and made way for an appreciation of faces and gestures and movements and forms.
The world of nofap
As a person involved in western neotantra, bdsm chastity games, and some other stuff, I lurk on some subreddits such as /r/nofap, /r/pornfree, and /r/semenretention.
I have struggled for quite some time to get clear on the differences between the apparent majority opinion on those subs, and my own way of thinking.
There is the nagging suspicion of a covert religious agenda. There is a slew of irrational pseudoscience, of course. There is an odd kind of team-spirit. There is a focus on long-running streaks, the longer the better. There is a promise of superpowers that I don't believe in.
All of that is not the core issue.
The core difference
People on /r/nofap try to achieve freedom through abstinence from sensuality.
I try to find enhanced sensuality through abstinence.
If both of those sound strange to you, I absolutely understand. If you buy into the western narrative of ongoing "sexual revolution" and indiviudalism expressed via sexuality, then all of this sounds strange, by necessity.
The western idea of individualistic sensuality
I'm building on those western values as a foundation. In fact, I am, as a person, infused with them, built on top of them. They are built into my being. I grew up in the 1970s and 80s, after all. I was formed by a deeply indivudalist, (post-)sexual-revolution society.
There is, obviously, a deep-running neurotic relation to sexuality in western culture. For a long time, the idea was to catch and conquer the beast, to see sexuality as something basal and primitive one had to overcome, or else...
With the sexual revolution of the late 20th century, this idea shifted: Now, sexuality was something to appreciate and to indulge in. Everybody was free to do what they wanted in their bedrooms (except if they did not want to do anything, which made them seem odd and suspicious). Consent required, of course.
Freedom, hence, was to be expressed in the chorus of "You don't get to tell me anything, and I'mma prove it to you by watching the filthiest porn I can find, and wanking to it until my balls fall off."
There is something fundamentally wrong in both approaches.
Don't get me wrong. I do not oppose sensuality, or sexuality. They are not evil, not sinful, not addictive or bad. Wanking can make you feel good. There is no harm in it.
I do oppose, however, mindless, overindulgent "sensuality". I oppose the idea that "more equals better". I resent the perverted, twisted kind of "sensuality" that comes in the form of glossy magazine covers. I think that women twisted into yoga-esque stretches just to show off their genitals are the opposite of sensual. I think that exploitation is unsexy and sad.
In fact, I like to put this kind of "sensuality" in scare quotes, because I think it is not sensual at all. There is only a superficial similarity.
Some personal history
I got into all this, long long ago, via bdsm chastity games.
My initial motivation was not to overcome my sensuality or my sexual desire. It was the opposite: I wanted to amp it up, in order to experience the masochistic pleasure of denial. I wanted to "spice up" my sex life, and for whatever reason, chastity and "denial" was what kicked my kink.
Over the years, my goals changed, as I changed through age and experience. Instead of suffering, I found joy. Instead of "enforced" abstinence, I found moderated sensuality. In sex, I found spirituality. Underneath the kink games, I found a layer of truth.
I found deep potential in deliberate self-constraint.
We should not let this potential be monopolized my morality and religion. We should liberate it from those shackles. We should cherish our sensuality by shaping it, arranging it, enjoying it slowly, in small pieces, rather than swallowing whatever we can find, whenever we can find it. We should see moderation as a joy, not a chore.
A little tidbit from my neotantric experience
You go slow, and you achieve unfathomable bliss. You don't "overheat", and you experience endless orgasmic feelings. You stay at a low level of arousal, and it keeps you from exhausting your resources.
By not overindulging, you become more sensitive, and hence you achieve greater pleasure.
A flaccid penis is more sensitive to touch than an erect one. I don't have to tell you how to fact-check that claim.
This works on the physical level, but it works on any other level, too.
Layers of deepness
Obedience to my Lady is a form of chivalry and pure love. It is very kinky, and it is more than that. It runs deeper. There are layers to it.
This is not to say that the kink is "wrong". The deeper layer is just another part of a greater thing, which encompasses all those layers.
There is a general principle at work here; just a bit of common sense, really, which has been known for a few thousand years: You reduce quantity to achieve quality.
You practice moderation so your excesses get even better.
You stop wanking twice a day, so whatever kind of sex you choose to have, is even more sexy.
By reducing your exposure to pornography, you become more sensitive to beauty. You may experience more sensual joy. The one partner you have in your life, may well become... not only "enough", but an unexhaustable well of wonderful experiences. By not trying to escape the bonds of monogamy through porn, you find renewed sensuality inside your relationship.
A tiny bit of buddhism
Buddhism teaches that opposition is just as binding as desire. You fight your urge -- it only becomes stronger. If you want to be free, you have to let your urges pass through. You have to somehow learn to live with them. You have to find a way to integrate them, while not being their slave. Total rejection might be one necessary step on that path, but it cannot be the ultimate goal. As long as you fight it, you are not at peace.
So again, those weird places on the net...
It seems to me that people on /r/nofap and companion subreddits come from a place of desperation. Their unability to shake their habit turns into self-loathing, and a wish to be able to eliminate it completely. Understandable, since they identify an addictive habit as the root of their issue, and they can't seem to get rid of it.
They claim supposed superpowers of irresistable attraction, so they can boost their morale and stay on track.
I'm not here to tell them otherwise.
I am here to propose an alternative view on sensuality in general.
I propose that less might actually be more. I propose that, instead of "getting rid of a nasty habit", you might be able to learn to enjoy heightened sensitivity through moderation, and the habit becomes a non-issue.
Are you a (no)fapper?
As mentioned above, I trained and practiced for many years, and I don't expect anyone to instantly "get" what I'm talking about if they're at the point where they hate themselves for their wanking; in spite of wanking off twice a day, like every other normal guy in my society, I never self-identified as a masturbation addict, and I was never into a lot of porn anyway, so I never saw an issue.
I do appreciate the difference. I really do. The problems that those subreddits try to address, were never exactly my problems to boot.
For example, due to my training, I do not have sexual fantasies, as long as I don't want them. That's one huge advantage!
I have the subjective impression (without any hard evidence of course), that the way nofappers go about it, is only effective for a tiny minority. They don't see any other way, so the only way that presents itself, seems to be the only way forward.
It might absolutely be necessary, if you really feel you are hooked, to completely eliminate any form of porn, and any wanking, for a good while. After all, whatever works for you, works for you. I won't debate that.
If you are a nofapper, I don't suggest that you should just believe me.
I suggest that you should remain open to both ideas, that you explore gently, slowly and with caution, and that you learn from your own experiences.
It might be a good idea to have a plan for the time after your "streak". That plan should involve a positive attitude towards your sensuality.
I suggest that you keep the ideas I present in the back of your head, that you research them when you feel sure that you can do so without danger.