i would like to share a few thoughts on this topic. keep in mind... this post is my experience, as of this moment, i am simply sharing. i am not seeking to prove myself right or anyone here wrong.
is lust/desire the cause of suffering, or is our clinging/attachment to lust/desire the cause of suffering? what is our quest for enlightenment or nirvana, is there absolutely no desire involved? desire in and of itself is neither healthy or unhealthy.
it seems to me, based upon my experiences, that inherent within these five skandas [the psychological/physical makeup of this BEing] that lust and desire are part and parcel of my experience. my body often craves/desires food, there is nothing wrong/evil about this craving. It is simply a natural function of the body. there is no right or wrong in this, it simply IS. if i wish to continue thriving in this body then my desire for food is a necessary requirement to maintain the health of the body. it is very possible that i may attach/cling to a desire for foods that poison/afflict my body, so i must be conscious of what i choose to eat. now, as we seek to define and set parameters for what/how we will practice, we begin to impose conditions on what we can or cannot eat, when we can or cannot eat, etc. this is not the dhamma, this is the annoying habit of human BEings who remain bound [often trapped] by conditions and who have not experienced the freedom inherent in the dhamma and their intrinsic bodhi.
sexuality is as natural as sunlight and soil, and is just as essential for life as we know it as the sun and the planet we live on.
we cannot get so trapped/bound by the words of a scripture that we deny our own reality/experiences. the dhamma is experience/life/reality, not words written by any human BEing.
if your lust/desire causes disturbance within your mind then you need to work on that, whether it is a lust for food, sex, or... enlightenment. If your desires and clinging interfere with your ability to perceive your true nature, creating inner conflict and turmoil [which will eventually reflect itself externally], then perhaps there is a problem.
if we think that there is something we have to do, a certain way of behaving, to obtain enlightenment, then we have truly lost sight of our essential nature.
it seems that we spend more time seeking to define and understand what shakyamuni buddha said, than we do seeking to actually experience it for ourselves. some may experience their nature through celibacy, for them that is beautiful. some may experience their nature through union with another, that is beautiful too. the dhamma is not this or that, it IS!
of course... words are never what they describe!!!
"True seeing is called transcendence;
False seeing is worldliness:
Set aside both right and wrong,
And the nature of enlightenment is clear."