Publisher: Self – Published
Release Date: Sept 17 2016
A dark Journey into the light is the true story of a man who, for sixty years, led a double life.
Josef is lost in a secret world of sexual gratification, a true-life Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, unable to halt the “roller coaster of conflicting emotional extremes that never stopped long enough for me to get off.”
“I gave myself to that sexual playground completely, and loved every minute of it when it was happening. It was only afterwards that spikes of shame, guilt, and self-¬loathing would be driven deep into my heart.”
He traces the beginnings of his obsession to his childhood, where his natural innocent curiosity and need for exploration were at odds with his Catholic upbringing and the view of his extremely repressed mother, both of whom regarded the human body as ‘dirty’ and ‘shameful’.
For sixty years, Josef lived a secret double life. The only people who knew about this other life were the professional mistresses, trannies, and prostitutes with whom he indulged every conceivable sexual fantasy. No one in his ‘other’ life had any idea of who he really was or the things he did.
Yet his secret life claimed a terrible toll. The failure of his first marriage. The loss of his son. The loss of his beloved second wife.
Only after extensive therapy was he finally able to see and feel the light of compassion, and allow the healing energy of forgiveness to begin taking away the pain.
In his journey, Josef explores an astonishing variety of topics. In addition to sexual addiction and the hidden world of BDSM, he delves into the burden of guilt of the Catholic Church, fear, political correctness, non-¬judgment, love and loss, philosophy, the soul, spiritual awakening, and healing.
This is the journey of an ordinary man lost in an extraordinary secret, dark world, who ultimately finds his way out of the tangled mess through the power of love and forgiveness.
After having lived in that dark world before reaching the light do you find it easier to see the darkness hidden in others or easier to see the light in others?
Wow, that is a great question!
The thing is, the Dark and the Light are both very intertwined in a single dance of evolving possibility and life is not a solo dance. It can’t be and we need light and dark to take the floor before the music can begin. The Dark is not just about sex. We all have “dark” in us and it presents itself in many ways. The opportunity for evolving possibility comes about from the conflict I feel when I see something about myself.
I can ignore the things I see about myself and put up walls of denial, but this will only serve to frustrate me and make me bitter as I enclose myself in a tiny world of self-judgment. That opens up a whole other stream of thought – my Thinking. That is a big subject and I cover it quite a lot in my book. My thinking is fundamental to everything I see about myself and everything in the world around me, so becomes critical in determining how I see the difference between dark and light. If I don’t deal with my thinking, and by doing so give room for my heart to be heard, I can never see the difference. In fact, I might even see the dark as light, so it can become very confusing. But really, at that point I’m not confused, because according to my thinking, the situation is very clear. That’s the real problem. Thinking has to slow down before anything else can happen but how the hell do I do that?
I can use my breath. By using my breath I can melt into the dark without becoming lost in it. In that way I can slowly bring it to the light of understanding. We are all here on earth to learn, and learning how to bring the dark and light together in a harmonious dance of love is first and foremost. But how? Love is borne from the dance because it frees me from the dark by lifting and transforming it. That is why hiding away in denial is such a bad plan. The only way out is transformation; not rejection.
It’s very easy to see the dark in others, but it’s just as easy to see the light in them. It depends what they have in them, and what I’m looking for in them. Having said that, a lot of people try to hide their dark side. Like I said, it’s not just about sex. Unfortunately a lot of people have lost touch with humanity and simple basic values. These people are well rehearsed at hiding their dark side, and instead present a caring positive picture to the world. They can be hard to spot.
The problem is a lot of people also try to hide their light. They’ve been hurt too many times and stop showing their vulnerable side to the world. They hide away and this is very sad.
I have to learn how to filter what people are showing me/hiding from me so I can see their light or dark. I need to find love in my own heart so I’m looking at the world from that perspective. I mean true love. Again, love is something I look at in more detail in my book.
I apologize for the lack of simplicity in my answer. The question opens up so much about the whole journey that is life.
In summary though, I find it easier to see the light in people just because that’s what I’m looking for. “Let the dead bury the dead” and all that stuff but we can’t be “foolish angels” and take our eye off the dark.
A Dark Journey into the Light was a lifetime in the making and more than 2 years in the writing. One of the biggest issues in life is sex and people usually make a choice. They either follow their desires, or they don't. This book looks at the issues that arose, and the conflict of emotions I had to deal with when I chose both, although it more correctly felt like they chose me. Life became an exercise in learning about myself by exploring what "lies beneath" as it reared it’s head and found it’s way to the surface. There was no way around the exploration because the battle for supremacy raging between the two was inside me. What was the war all about and what would become of me? This book is about my journey of continuing self-discovery as I move through the mystery we call life.
The book is an autobiography so it's pretty much all about me and who I am. I suppose there are a few small things that aren't covered. For instance, I like dogs and horses and I love gardening. I'm a country boy and grew up with spiders and snakes, and although I'm not keen on spiders if one crawls up my trouser leg they don't freak me out either. A snake up the trouser leg though would be a different story! Think “a hillbilly version of River Dance.” I love long hikes over the mountains or across the plains. Just as long as I'm walking somewhere, but at times I wonder if I'm just trying to leave something behind.
A Dark Journey into the Light is an interesting and thought provoking book for anyone who has ever questioned urges and desires familiar to us all. It provides interesting insights into the workings of the mind of a sex addict. We are much more than what we feel, and less than what we think. This book explores the healing that is possible when we find balance between the two.
Note from the Author
This is the story of my life. It has not been fabricated, exaggerated, or embellished in any way. It’s the raw truth and I’m not really sure why I’m writing it, but my therapist thinks it’s a good idea, and I can understand her reasoning about that. Writing down my life’s story might simply be a part of the healing process, so I can finally move on with my life and live it like a normal person.
All my life I’ve wished for nothing more than just to be normal, as I’ve looked around and envied other people’s untroubled lives. At least that is how they appear on the surface. We can all be quite certain that most people harbor some secrets in their lives. Those secrets might be small things they regret or feel ashamed about. I wish people did not need to have secrets and live in fear and guilt about their lives, because most things people hide from are not worth the stress, but I guess I’m the same.
Maybe I should be able to shout from the rooftops, and tell the world I’m not afraid or ashamed of my life, but in my heart I know many people will stand in judgment of me. At the same time, I know deep down a lot of people would applaud my courage if I did so, even if their own fears prevented them from supporting me publicly. Therein lies the problem.
If you stand outside society’s norm you stand alone, through social judgment and fear. Maybe I should just include it all in the category of fear, and leave judgment out of it, considering all judgment has its roots in fear.
Fear; the prime mover for almost every expression in our lives. What would it be like to be free of fear?
Everyone has their problems, and people go through a great deal of pain and suffering. I personally know people I would not trade places with for anything on earth. We are all plagued by similar run-of-the-mill issues, such as marriage breakups, financial problems, health issues, and everything else that goes with living on this planet, as we try to coexist with a whole lot of people. With most of them we have almost nothing in common, except a pattern of similar reactions that maintain a reasonable level of “sanity” in society. And it is all bound in fear.
It doesn’t sound like much of a way to live, but if you question people about their lives and propose the idea that they are living in fear, almost all of them will disagree. Some will even become angry, and possibly violent, if you dare to start a debate with them on the issue. The cruel irony is they won’t see, even then, that their reaction to the idea of their lives being based on fear is in itself a fear-based reaction.
So why don’t I tell people about my life? Why don’t I stand up, step out of the shadows society creeps around in, and put my trust in people to accept my life?
Simple. People cannot be trusted.
Everyone knows this because everyone has a secret. The only variable is the size of the secret, and mine would attract a massive excess baggage fee if I packed it in a suitcase and boarded a plane.
I’ve experienced, or still do to some degree, all those problems I spoke about: divorce, health, finance, and so on. I’m not saying my life is difficult in the main, and in fact I often count myself lucky, giving thanks for my life and the many things I enjoy, because unlike some others, at least I have my health. I can walk, talk, eat, see, and hear. I also have a brain that works well enough, which gives me the opportunity to make something of myself, and do something with my life. I really cannot complain, so what makes my life so different my therapist thinks it’s a good idea to write it down?
I don’t think the aspect of my life in question is particularly unusual, or different, from that of a large percentage of the population, so I guess it comes down to a question of degree and scope. When I consider those factors I can’t help feeling my life has been a little unusual to say the least, and a lot unusual to “say the most”.
There’s no doubt my life could, and would, be summed up by a lot of people with words like sick, deviant, gross, pathetic, abhorrent, disgusting, depraved, and so on.
These words are not new to me. I’ve tarred myself with every one of them over the years, and nobody else could project the depth of feeling in them more strongly than I have against myself. That projection evoked feelings of shame, guilt, unworthiness, and self-loathing that cannot be imagined. Even if I told you it’s impossible to imagine the things I’ve done, and then gave you a hint, you still would not guess at the depth and breadth of my life experience.
I’ve written about this in a way that tries to depict how I felt at the time and how I feel now, and can only use words or terms that make that possible. This book is not for the prudish or faint-hearted, so if you like your reality painted over and sugar-coated, then this is not for you, and I suggest you make a nice cup of tea and watch re-runs of Days of Our Lives instead.
I’m not complaining about my lot, and in some strange way I have even come to appreciate it after all this time. All I want now is to make some sense of it and possibly enrich the remainder of my life, and maybe even help someone else with theirs.
It all seemed to begin harmlessly enough as a young child in primary school but when I was a young teenager, an innocent conversation with my mother raised the idea in me that my turbulent, obsessive journey had actually begun when I was just a baby. I explore this in chapter 5.
In time I had no doubt about this, and it often led me to wonder whether it was some kind of karmic load I was unloading, or if I was building up a karmic load that would crush the life out of my soul.
This question would plague me throughout the decades to come, but whatever the explanation, I was powerless to do anything about it. All I could do was hang in, and hang on, as I plunged headlong through a chaotic world of sensory self-gratification.
Where do I even start to give someone an idea of the duality of the life I have lived for as long as I can remember? There is that old cliché about starting at the beginning, and it may be right, but let’s just skip ahead for a moment, because honestly, if I’m going to write this down I don’t have time for norms or clichés.
Skipping ahead will also give me a clear reminder of why I’m writing this, and what I’m writing about. I’ll come back later and try to join some dots to give a clearer picture of what it always felt like to me: a life unlived. Is that too dramatic, to call it a life unlived? I lived something, didn’t I?
We all have some notion of what life should be like, or what we wish it was like, but in my mind and heart my life never measured up to any of my wishes. It just never felt like living. It felt like I was trapped in some kind of time warp, or parallel universe, where I could only watch my life happening around me as though it was someone else’s. But it is what it is.
Ooops, that sounds like a cliché.