Swami Sivananda Saraswati

(1887-1963)

Practice of Brahmacharya

Source (very large file): Divine Life Society

Source: Divine Life Society

Swami Sivananda

Section 1: The Phenomenon of Sex

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1. THE PRESENT-DAY DEGRADATION

There is a great illusion in front of man. It troubles him in the form of woman. There is a great illusion in front of woman. It troubles her in the form of man.

Go wherever you like - Amsterdam, London or New York. Analyze this world of phenomenal experience. You will find only two things - sex and ego.

The sex instinct is the greatest urge in human life. Sex energy or lust is the most deep-rooted instinct in man. Sex energy entirely fills the mind, intellect, Prana, senses and the whole body. It is the oldest of the factors that have gone into the constitution of the human being.

A man has a thousand and one desires. But the central strong desire is the sexual desire. The fundamental desire is the urge for a mate. All hang on this central basic desire. The desire for money, the desire for a son, the desire for property, the desire for houses, the desire for cattle and other desires come later on.

Because the whole creation of this universe is to be kept up, God has made the sexual desire very, very powerful. Otherwise, many Jivanmuktas would have cropped up quite easily, just as graduates from universities. It is easy to get university qualifications. It demands a little money, memory, intelligence and a little strain. But it is an uphill climb to obliterate the sexual impulse. He who has completely eradicated lust and is established in mental Brahmacharya is Brahman or God Himself.

This world is nothing but sex and ego. Ego is the chief thing. It is the basis. Sex hangs on the ego. If the ego is destroyed by Vichara or enquiry of "Who am I?", the sex idea takes to its heels by itself. Man, master of his destiny, has lost his divine glory and has become a slave, a tool, in the hands of sex and ego on account of ignorance. Sex and ego are the products of Avidya or nescience. The dawn of knowledge of the Self annihilates these two enemies of Atman, the two dacoits who are plundering the helpless, ignorant, little, false Jiva, the illusory "I".

Man has degraded himself to a great degree by becoming the puppet of passion. Alas! He has become an imitative machine. He has lost his power of discrimination. He has sunk into the most abject form of slavery. What a sad state! What a lamentable plight indeed! If he wishes to regain his lost divine state and Brahmic glory, his whole being must be transformed, his sex desire must be completely transmuted by sublime divine thoughts and regular meditation. Transmutation of the sex desire is a very potent, efficacious and satisfactory way to realize eternal bliss.

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The world is all sexy

Passion reigns supreme in all parts of the world. The minds of people are filled with sexual thoughts. The world is all sexy. The whole world is under a tremendous sexual intoxication. All are deluded and move in the world with perverted intellects. No thought of God. No talk of God. It is all fashion, restaurants, hotels, dinners, dances, races and cinema. Their life ends in eating, drinking and procreating. That is all.

Passion has introduced new fashions not only in London, Paris and Lahore, but even in Madras amongst the Brahmin girls of orthodox families who apply Cherry Blossom Powder and Hazeline Snow to their faces, instead of the sacred turmeric powder, and dress their hair like the French girls. This sort of vile imitation has crept into the mind of our boys and girls in India. The sacred percepts and teachings of our ancient sages and Rishis have been totally ignored. What a lamentable state! They will accept anything as true only if a Johnson or a Russel brings something by way of the theory of evolution, motion, atom, relativity or transcendentalism. Shameful indeed! Their brains are all clogged with foreign particles. They do not have the brain to absorb anything good in others. There is a miserable degeneration in the present young men and women in India. This is the age when they cannot walk even a short distance without a Rickshaw, a car, a tram, a bicycle or a carriage. What an awful artificial life! Bobbing of the hair amongst the ladies in India has become a severe epidemic and has invaded the whole of India. This is all due to the mischief of passion and greed.

Young men of the present day indiscriminately imitate the West and this results in their own ruin. Men are swayed by lust. They lose their sense of righteousness, and of time and place. They never discriminate between right and wrong. They lose all sense of shame.

Read the history of the crimes - robbery, rapes, kidnapping, assaults, murders - that come up for trial before the Sessions Courts. Lust is at the root of all this. It may be lust for money or lust for carnal pleasure. Lust ruins life, lustre, strength, vitality, memory, wealth, fame, holiness, peace, wisdom and devotion.

Man, with his boasted intellect, has to learn lessons from birds and animals. Even animals have more self-control than men. It is only the so-called man who has degraded himself much by indulgence. At the heat of sexual excitement, he repeats the same ignoble act again and again. He has not a bit of self-control. He is an absolute slave to passion. He is a puppet in the hands of passion. Like rabbits he procreates and brings forth countless children to swell up the numbers of beggars in the world. Lions, elephants, bulls and other powerful animals have better self-control than men. Lions cohabit only once in a year. After conception, the female animals will never allow the male animals to approach them till the young ones are weaned and they themselves become healthy and strong. Man only violates the laws of nature and consequently suffers from innumerable diseases. He has degenerated to a level far lower than that of animals in this respect.

As a king is no king without a treasury, subjects and an army, as a flower is no flower without fragrance, as a river is no river without water, so also, a man is no man without Brahmacharya. Ahara, Nidra, Bhaya and Maithuna - food, sleep, fear and copulation - are common to both animals and men. That which differentiates a man from an animal is Dharma, Viveka and Vichara Sakti. Jnana and Vichara can be secured only by the preservation of Veerya. If a man has not got these qualifications, he should really be reckoned as a veritable animal only.

If lust, which is the source of all enjoyments in this world, ceases, then all worldly bondage, which has its substratum in the mind, will cease. Even the most virulent poison is no poison when compared to lust. The former defiles one body only, whereas the latter adulterates many bodies in successive births. You are a slave of passions and desires, emotions and attractions. When are you going to rise up from this miserable state? Those persons, who, in spite of the knowledge of the non-existence of happiness, both in the past and in the present, in the baneful objects of the world, do yet entangle themselves in them with their thoughts clinging to them, deserve the appellation of an ass, if not a worse one. If you do not possess Viveka, if you do not try your best for salvation, if you spend your lifetime in eating, drinking and sleeping, you are a horizontal being only, having to learn some lessons from those animals, which possess far more self-restraint.

The sexual degradation that has overtaken mankind today is due directly to the fact that people have assumed that there is a natural "sexual instinct" in human beings. It is not so. The natural instinct is the procreative one. If men and women restrict sexual indulgence to mere procreation, then that itself is observance of Brahmacharya. As this is found to be impossible in the vast majority of cases, total abstinence is enjoined on those who seek the higher values of life. As far as the Sadhaka of burning Mumukshutva is concerned, celibacy is a sine qua non, as he cannot afford to waste his vital energy at all.

The gratification of every worldly desire is sinful; the flesh should be the abject slave of the spirit intent upon divine things. Man was created for a life of spiritual communion with God, but he yielded to the seduction of evil demons who availed themselves of the sensuous side of his nature to draw him away from the contemplation of the divine and lead him to the earthly life. Moral goodness, therefore, consists in renouncing all sensuous pleasures, in separating from the world through discrimination and dispassion, in living solely after the spirit, in imitating the perfection and purity of God. Sensuality is inconsistent with wisdom and holiness. The great business of life is to avoid impurity.

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Spiritual Sadhana is the answer to sex attraction

Real culture is the establishment of perfect physical and mental Brahmacharya. Real culture is the realization of the identity of the individual soul with the Supreme Soul through direct experience. For a passionate worldly-minded man, the terms Self-realization, God, Self, Vairagya, renunciation, death and burial ground are very revolting and terrifying, because he is attached to objects. The terms singing, dancing, talks about women and so on are very pleasing.

The attraction for objects will gradually vanish if one begins to think seriously of the unreal nature of the world. People are burnt by the fire of lust. All measures that are calculated to eradicate this dire disease should be initiated and put through. All people should be made fully conversant with the different methods that will help them to root out the dire enemy lust. If they fail in one method, they can take recourse to another. Lust is a brutal instinct in unregenerated men. One should be ashamed to repeat again and again the sensual acts when one is fully aware that the goal of life is Self-realization through the attainment of purity and the practice of constant meditation. An objector may say that these topics should not be dealt with openly, but should rather be talked about secretly. This is wrong. What is the use of hiding things? Hiding a thing is a sin.

In these days of modern culture and new civilization, in this era of scientific advancement, these lines may not be relished by some people. They may remark that some of the terms are jarring, revolting, offending and indecent and will not suit the people of refined tastes. They are entirely mistaken. These lines will produce a very deep impression in the minds of thirsting aspirants who are longing for liberation. Their minds will be entirely changed. There is no real spiritual culture amongst the people of modern society. Etiquette is mere show. Everywhere you can see much show, hypocrisy, pretended politeness, meaningless formalities and conventions. Nothing emanates from the core of the heart. People lack sincerity and integrity. The utterances of the Mahavakyas of the sages and the valuable teachings of the scriptures will not produce any impression in the minds of passionate, worldly-minded persons. They will be like seeds thrown in rocky soil. They will be like pearls thrown before swine.

If one clearly understands the serious damage that comes through an impure life and determines to attain the goal of life by leading a pure life, he must keep his mind busily engaged in divine thoughts, concentration, meditation, study and service of humanity.

Lack of spiritual Sadhana is the main cause for all sexual attractions. Mere theoretical abstention from sensuality will not bring you good results. You must mercilessly cut off all formalities in social life and lead a pious life freed from the business of bodily existence. Leniency to internal lower tendencies will land you in the region of suffering. Excuse will be of no use in this respect. You must be sincere in your quest for the sublime life of spirituality. Half-heartedness will leave you in your old state of misery.

Wake up, friends, from this mire of illusory Samsara now. Passion has wrought great havoc in you as you are drowned in Avidya. How many millions of fathers, mothers, wives and sons you have had in previous births! This body is full of impurities. What a shame it is to embrace this filthy body! It is mere foolishness only. Give up Moha for this body. Also, give up identification with this body by meditating upon the glory of the Suddha Atman. Give up worship of the body. Worshippers of the body are Asuras and Rakshasas.

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Brahmacharya - the need of the hour

My dear brothers! Remember that you are not this perishable body of flesh and bones. You are the immortal, all pervading, Sat-Chit-Ananda Atman. Thou art Atman. Thou art living truth. Thou art Brahman. Thou art absolute consciousness. You can attain this supreme state only by leading a life of true Brahmacharya. The spirit of Brahmacharya must pervade your entire life and all your actions.

People talk of Brahmacharya, but practical men are rare indeed. A life of continence is really beset with difficulties. But the path becomes smooth for a man of iron determination, patience and perseverance. We want real, practical men in the field, men who are practical Brahmacharis, men who can impress people by their strong physique, ideal lives, noble character and spiritual strength. Mere idle talk is of no use whatsoever. We have had enough of idle talkers in the field and on the platforms. Let some practical men come forward and lead the youngsters by their exemplary, lives and spiritual aura. Let me remind you once more! Example is better than precept.

The average life of mankind has shrunk to forty years as against the natural hundred years. Every well-wisher of the country must think over this most disgraceful and disastrous state of affairs very carefully and apply the proper remedies in time. The future well-being of the country rests entirely on the youth. It is the duty of the Sannyasins, saints, teachers, professors and parents to reintroduce the life of celibacy in youngsters. I pray that the educational authorities and the elders will pay their special attention to this vital subject of Brahmacharya for the uplift of the future generation. Training of the youth means nation-building.

The future well-being of India rests entirely on Brahmacharya and Brahmacharya alone. It is the duty of Sannyasins and Yogis to train students in Brahmacharya, to teach Asana and Pranayama and disseminate the knowledge of Atman far and wide. They can do a lot in improving the situation as they are whole-time men. They should come out of their caves and Kutirs for Loka-Sangraha.

If our motherland wants to rise high in the scale of nations, her children, both male and female, should study the important subject of Brahmacharya in all its bearings, understand its supreme importance and observe the great Vrata strictly.

In conclusion, I fervently pray, with folded hands, that you all should sincerely struggle hard to control passion - the enemy of peace and prosperity - by Sadhana. A true Brahmachari is the real mighty emperor of this world. My silent adorations to all Brahmacharins! Glory unto them!

May you be seated firm as the Mahameru in your Satchidananda Svarupa without any impure, lustful thought! May God bless the aspirants with strength and energy for keeping up Brahmacharya! May you, with a pure, stainless mind, unintermittently be in the cognition of your Atmic Reality! May you, without worldly desires and ambition, rest in That which ever is in the midst of the enjoyer and the enjoyed!

May the divine splendour shine in your face! May the divine flame grow brighter in you all! May the divine power and peace abide in you for ever! Om Santi! Santi! Santi!


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2. THE WORKING OF THE SEX IMPULSE

Man wishes to have children to maintain the race or line. This is the reproductive instinct. The desire to copulate proceeds from this sexual instinct. The strength of the sexual desire depends upon the sexual impulse.

According to the Gita, impulse is Vegam or force. Lord Krishna says, "He who is able to endure here on earth, before he is liberated from the body, the force born of desire and passion, he is harmonised, he is a happy man".

Impulse is a mighty force. It exerts influence on the mind. It is a force suddenly communicated to the mind.

Just as petrol or steam moves the engine, the instincts and impulses move this body. The instincts are the prime movers of all human activities. They give a push to the body and move the Indriyas to action. The instincts create habits. The instinctive impulses supply the driving power by which all mental activities are kept up. These impulses are mental forces. They operate through the mind and the intellect. They mould the life of a man. The mystery of life lies in them.

The attraction towards women in men is born of Rajas. That unknown attraction and happiness in their company is the seed of the sex impulse. This attraction, which is like a bubble in the beginning, later on assumes the form of a formidable, uncontrollable wave of strong passion or sexual appetite. Beware. Generate the spiritual wave of devotion through Japa, Satsanga, meditation and Vichara and kill this attraction in the bud.

You must understand the psychological working of the sex impulse. When there are itches on the body, mere scratching of them is a pleasure. The sex impulse is only a nervous itching. The satisfaction of this impulse begets a delusive pleasure, but it has a disastrous effect on the spiritual well-being of the person.

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The flowery bow of Cupid

Lust is powerful. It carries a flowery bow equipped with five arrows, namely, Mohana, Stambhana, Unmadana, Soshana and Tapana - fascination, stupefaction, intoxication, emaciation and burning. One arrow causes fascination in young men when they see a beautiful form. Another arrests their attention. The third intoxicates them. The fourth arrow causes intense attraction towards the form. The fifth arrow inflames and burns their heart. It pierces their cardiac chambers deeply. No one on this earth, nay, in all the three worlds, has the power to resist the potential influence of these arrows. These arrows pierced even the heart of Lord Siva and many Rishis of yore. These arrows induced even Indra to molest Ahalya. Cupid directly shoots an arrow through the bewitching eyebrows and piercing glances of a young lady with tender waist, rosy cheeks and red lips. Moonlit night, scents and perfumes, flowers and garlands, sandal-paste, meat and liquor, theatres and novels are his mighty weapons to delude the passionate young men. Reason and discrimination take to their heels the moment their hearts are filled with burning passion. They all become absolutely blind. Cupid makes intellectual persons, great orators, ministers and research scholars, doctors and barristers, as pleasure deer or pet dogs in the laps of young ladies. Reason has temporarily taken its seat in the dry intellect of a learned pundit or a professor. He has no real stamina. Cupid knows his strength. Cupid reigns supreme everywhere. He penetrates the hearts of all. He knows how to tickle their nerves. Within the twinkling of an eye he destroys reason, discrimination and understanding by simply inflaming the passion of young men.

Even in dreams Cupid has full sway, even when all the Indriyas are silent. Ladies are his infallible agents! They are always at his beck and call. Cupid operates through their smiles, bewitching glances and sweet words, through their melodious songs and ball dances. Young girls work quickly the ruin of men and can disturb the peace of even the minds of sages. Cupid can make the nervous system of Brahmacharins quiver in the delirium of imaginary pleasure even when they think of the pictures of young, beautiful ladies, even when they hear the gentle sounds of their bracelets and anklets, even when they think of their blooming faces. What to speak of touch then?

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The Samskaras in the subconscious mind

A sexual act produces a Samskara or impression in the subconscious mind or Chitta. This Samskara raises a Vritti or thought-wave in the mind and the Vritti again causes a Samskara. Enjoyment thickens the Vasanas. Through memory and imagination, a revival of the sexual desire comes in.

Remembrance of the image of a woman unsettles the mind. When a tiger has once tasted human blood, it always runs to kill human beings. It becomes a man-eater. Even so, when the mind has once tasted sexual pleasures, it always runs after women.

From the bed of Samskaras and Vasanas in the mind emanates Kalpana or imagination through Smriti or memory. Then comes attachment. Along with imagination, emotion and impulse manifest. Emotion and impulse exist side by side. Then comes sexual irritation - craving and burning in the mind and throughout the body. The irritation and burning in the mind percolate into the physical body, just as the water inside a pot percolates into the surface of the pot. If you are very vigilant, you can drive off the bad imagination in the very beginning itself and avert the impending danger. Even if you allow the thief imagination to enter the first gate, keep a careful watch at the second gate when the sexual irritation manifests. You can stop the burning now. You can stop also, easily, the strong sexual impulse from being transmitted to the Indriya itself. Draw the sex energy up towards the brain through Uddiyana and Kumbhaka. Divert the mind. Chant 'Om' or any other Mantra with concentration. Pray, meditate. If you still find it difficult to control the mind, immediately seek Satsanga and do not remain alone. When the strong impulse manifests suddenly and is transmitted to the organ, you forget everything and become blind. You become a prey to lust. Later on you repent.

Even in a blind man who is a celibate who has not seen the face of a woman, the sexual impulse is very strong. Why? This is due to the force of Samskaras or impressions of previous births that are embedded in the subconscious mind. Whatever you do, whatever you think, are all lodged or printed or indelibly impressed in the layers of the Chitta or subconscious mind. These impressions can be burnt or obliterated only by the dawn of knowledge of Atman or the Supreme Self. When the sexual Vasana fills the whole mind and body, the Samskaras assume the form of big Vrittis or waves and torment the poor blind man.

It is easy to control the conscious mind. But it is very difficult to control the subconscious mind. You may be a Sannyasi. You may be a moral man. Mark how the mind behaves or conducts itself in dreams. You begin to steal in dreams. You commit adultery in dreams. The sex impulses, ambitions and low desires are all ingrained in you and deep-rooted in the subconscious mind. Destroy the subconscious mind and its Samskaras through Vichara, Brahma-Bhavana and meditation on 'Om' and its meaning. A man who is established in mental Brahmacharya can never have even a single thought of evil in dreams. He can never have a bad dream. There is a lack of Vichara or Viveka in dream. That is the reason why you get bad dreams, even though you are pure in the Jagrat state through the power of Viveka and Vichara.

An aspirant complains: "As I continue meditation, layer after layer of impurities keep rising from the subconscious mind. Sometimes they are so strong and formidable that I am bewildered as to how to check them. I am not perfectly established in truth and in Brahmacharya. The old habits of lust and of speaking lies are still lurking in me. Lust is troubling me vigorously. The very idea of women agitates my mind. My mind is so sensitive that I am not able to hear or think of them. As soon as the thought comes in the mind, my Sadhana gets disturbed, and also, the peace of the whole day is spoiled. I advise my mind, coax it, frighten it, but it is of no avail. My mind revolts. I do not know how to control this passion. Irritability, egoism, anger, greed, hatred and attachment are still lurking in me. Lust is my chief enemy and it is a very strong one too. I request you to be kind enough to advise me as to how to destroy it".

When the impurities emerge from the subconscious mind and come to the surface of the conscious mind with formidable force, do not try to resist them. Repeat your Ishta Mantra. Do not think of your defects or evil qualities much. It is enough if you introspect and find out your defects. Do not try to attack the evil qualities. Then they will show their long faces. Develop positive virtues. Do not worry yourself often: "I have got so many defects and weaknesses". Cultivate Sattvic virtues. Through meditation, and by the development of positive qualities, through the Pratipaksha Bhavana method, all the negative qualities will die by themselves. This is the right method.

You may become old, your hair may turn gray, but your mind is ever young. The capacity may vanish, but the craving remains even when you have reached advanced senility. Cravings are the real seeds of birth. These craving-seeds give rise to Sankalpa and action. The wheel of Samsara is kept revolving by these cravings. Nip them in the bud. Then only will you be safe. You will get Moksha. Brahma-Bhavana, Brahma-Chintana, meditation on 'Om' and devotion will root out these craving-seeds which are laid deep. You will have to dig them out properly in various corners and burn them beyond resurrection. Then only your efforts will bear the fruit of Nirvikalpa Samadhi.

One student writes to me: "The impure flesh and skin appear to me as very pure and good. I am very lustful. I try to develop mentally the Bhava of mother in all women. I prostrate before a lady mentally, thinking that she is an image of Goddess Kali, and yet my mind is extremely lustful. What shall I do now? I desire again and again to have a glimpse of a beautiful lady". Obviously, Vairagya and discrimination have not dawned in his mind even a bit. The old vicious Samskaras and Vasanas are very powerful.

Even a pure Brahmachari will be troubled in the beginning by curiosity. He will be curious to know and feel what sort of happiness the sexual enjoyment will give. He thinks sometimes: " Let me have the carnal knowledge of a woman once. Then I will be able to root out this sexual impulse and desire completely. This sexual curiosity is troubling me very much". Mind wants to delude this Brahmachari. Maya havocs through curiosity. Curiosity is transmuted into a strong desire. Enjoyment cannot bring satisfaction of a desire. The wise way is to kill the strong wave of curiosity by Vichara or enquiry about that pure sexless Atman, by totally eradicating the sexual desire through constant meditation, and by thinking over the glory of Brahmacharya and the defects of an impure life.

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How to gauge your own mental purity

The sight of a young beautiful girl produces in a passionate young man attraction and agitation in the mind, piercing of the heart and serious intoxication. If these symptoms are absent in a man, then it is a sign to denote that he is established in Brahmacharya. The sight of the pairing or mating of birds and animals, or the sight of the bare body of a lady, should not produce the least agitation in the mind.

If a feeling arises in the mind of a Brahmachari for the company of a woman during times of ailment, if there is a strong desire to be in her company, if there is a desire to talk, play and joke with her, if there is a desire to look at young beautiful girls, if the look is unholy and unchaste, and if there is a desire in the mind when there is pain in the body for touch by the hands of females, remember that lust is still lurking in his mind. There is deep sexual craving. This should be destroyed. The old thief is still hiding. Such a Brahmachari must be very careful. He is still within the danger zone. He has not attained the state of purity. Even in dreams there should not arise in the mind any craving for the touch of a female and the company of a woman. One's purity can be gauged by one's experiences in dream. If one is entirely free from any sexual thought in dreams, he has reached the climax of purity. Self-analysis and introspection are indispensable requisites to determine the state of one's mind.

A Jnani will have no wet dreams. He who is established in Brahmacharya will not get even a single bad dream. Dream serves as a criterion to judge our mental state or the degree of our mental purity. If you do not get impure dreams, you are growing in purity.

The very idea of sex should vanish from the mind. Sukadeva had this experience. Suka did not marry. He left his home and roamed about the world at large, stark naked. The separation was very painful for his father, Vyasa. Vyasa went out in search of his son. While he passed by a tank, the Apsaras, who were freely indulging in play, felt ashamed and put on their clothes hastily. Vyasa said, "Very strange indeed! I am old. I am putting on clothes. But when my son passed this way naked, you kept quiet, you remained unmoved". The Apsaras replied, "O venerable sage, thy son knows not man and woman, but thou knowest".

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Eradication of lust is no easy task

You will have to search out carefully this dire enemy, lust that lies hidden in the various corners of your heart. Just as the fox hides itself within the bush, so also, this lust hides itself in the substratum and corners of the mind. You can detect its presence only if you are vigilant. Intense self-examination is very necessary. Just as powerful enemies can be conquered only if you attack them from all sides, so also, you can keep the powerful senses under control only if you attack them from all sides, from within and from without, from above and from beneath. The senses are very turbulent. The powerful virus that causes syphilis is attacked on all sides by the doctor by various contrivances such as inunction or local rubbing, injection, mixture and powder. So also, the senses must be controlled by various methods such as fasting, restriction in diet, Pranayama, Japa, Kirtan, meditation, Vichara or enquiry of "Who am I?", Pratyahara or abstraction, Dama or self-restraint, Asanas, Bandhas, Mudras, thought-control and destruction of Vasanas.

Safeguard yourself against the error of foolishly imagining that you have succeeded in getting rid of lust by the mere fact of having lived a single life for a number of years or experiencing a little feeling of serenity or purity. You must not labour under the delusion that you have eradicated lust completely by adjusting the diet a bit, by practising Pranayama and by doing a little Japa, and that you have nothing more to do. Temptation or Mara may overcome you at any moment. Eternal vigilance and rigorous Sadhana are very essential. You cannot attain perfect Brahmacharya by limited effort. Just as a machine-gun is necessary to kill a powerful enemy, so also, constant, vigorous, powerful Sadhana is necessary to annihilate this powerful enemy, lust. You must not be puffed up with pride for your little achievement in celibacy. If you are put to test, you will hopelessly fail. You must be ever conscious of your shortcomings and you must constantly strive to get rid of them. The highest effort is necessary. Then only you will have sanguine success in this direction.

It is easy to tame a wild tiger or a lion or an elephant. It is easy to play with the cobra. It is easy to walk over the fire. It is easy to devour fire and drink the waters of the ocean. It is easy to uproot the Himalayas. It is easy to get victory in the battlefield. But, it is difficult to eradicate lust. Right from the earlier stages of evolution through the ages, the instinctive urge for reproduction and multiplication has been kept up only by the power of lust. Therefore, despite all efforts at controlling and subduing it, the power tries to manifest itself forcibly and overwhelm the Sadhaka or aspirant.

All the same, you need not despair even a bit. Have faith in God, in His Name and His grace. Lust cannot be completely rooted out of the mind except by the grace of the Lord. You are bound to succeed if you have faith in Him. You can destroy lust in the twinkling of an eye. The Lord makes a dumb man speak and a lame man ascend a steep hill. Mere human effort alone will not suffice. The divine grace is needed. God helps those who help themselves. If you do total self-surrender, Mother Herself does the Sadhana.

Regular meditation and Japa of a Mantra, Sattvic diet, Satsanga, practice of Pranayama, Sirsha and Sarvanga Asanas, study of religious books, Vichara and seclusion for three months on the banks of any holy river will entirely annihilate lust, however powerful the old Samskaras and Vasanas may be. The positive always overcomes the negative. You need not be discouraged at any rate. Plunge yourself seriously in meditation, kill this Mara, and come out victorious in the struggle. Shine as a brilliant Yogi. Thou art ever-pure Atman. Feel this, O Viswaranjan!

Sexual impulses can, with difficulty, be controlled. A rebellion of the sexual impulses takes place when you attempt to control them. Constant Japa and meditation for a long period are necessary to direct the sex energy into the spiritual channel. Complete sublimation of the sexual energy into Ojas Sakti is necessary. Then only you are perfectly safe. Then only you will be established in Samadhi, as Rasasvad will entirely vanish. Extreme patience, constant vigilance, perseverance and rigorous Sadhana are necessary to eradicate the sexual impulses and attain perfect purity in thought, word and deed.

Brahmacharya or purity can be attained only through constant striving. It cannot be achieved in a day or a week. Lust is doubtless very powerful. It is your deadly enemy. But your most powerful friend is the Name of the Lord. It will destroy lust from its very root. So, always recite and sing, "Ram, Ram, Ram".

Yogic practices, meditation and so on will attenuate or thin out the sexual desire to a very great extent. But, Self-realization alone can completely destroy or burn the sexual desire and the Samskaras in toto. As the Bhagavadgita rightly points out, "The objects of the senses turn away from the abstinent man leaving the longing behind, but this longing also turns away after he attains Self-realization".

Sex urge is a creative force. Unless you are inspired by spiritual ideals, it is difficult to keep the sexual instinct in check. Direct the sex energy to the higher spiritual channel. It will be sublimated. It will be transformed into divine energy. Complete eradication of lust, however, cannot be done through personal effort. It can be accomplished only by God's grace.


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3. INTENSITY OF THE CRAVINGS IN DIFFERENT PERSONS

Passion is a very strong desire. A mild desire becomes a strong passion by frequent repetition or frequent enjoyment.

In a broad sense, passion means any strong desire. There is passion for service to the country in patriots. There is passion for God-realization in first-class aspirants. In some people, there is a strong passion for novel-reading. There is passion for reading religious books. But generally, in common parlance, passion means lust or a strong sexual appetite. This is a physical craving for sexual or carnal gratification. When any sexual act is repeated very often, the desire becomes very keen and strong. The sexual instinct or the reproductive instinct in man involuntarily prompts him to engage in sexual acts for the preservation of his species.

Passion is the instinctive urge for externalisation through self-preservation and self-multiplication. It is the diversifying power, which is directly opposed to the force that moves towards the integration of being.

Passion is an effect or product of Avidya. It is a negative Vikara in the mind. Atman is ever-pure. Atman is Vimala or Nirmala or Nirvikara. It is Nitya-Suddha. Avidya Sakti has taken the form of passion for keeping up the Lila of the Lord. You will find in the Chandipath or Durga Saptasati:

Ya Devi Sarvabhuteshu Kamarupena Samsthita
Namastasyai Namastasyai Namastasyai Namo Namah

It means: "I bow to that Devi who has taken the form of passion in all these beings".

Even Brahma, the Creator, does not know the exact seat wherein passion lies. In the Bhagavadgita, you will find it mentioned that the senses, the mind and the Buddhi are the seats of passion. The Pranamaya Kosa or the vital sheath is another seat. Desire is all-pervading in the body. Every cell, every atom, every molecule, every electron is surcharged with passion. There are undercurrents, cross-currents, inter-currents and submarine currents in the mighty ocean of passion. You must completely annihilate each one of them. You must completely destroy passion in all places.

Passion is a Vritti or modification that arises from the mind-lake when the Rajo-Guna predominates. Rajasic food such as meat, fish and eggs, Rajasic dress and the Rajasic way of living, scents, novel-reading, cinema, talk on sensual things, bad company, liquor, intoxicants of all description, tobacco - all these excite passion.

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Passion in children, the youth and the aged

Passion is in a seed state in young boys and girls. It does not give them any trouble. Just as the tree is latent in the seed, so also, passion is in a seed state in the minds of children. In old men and women, passion gets suppressed. It cannot do any havoc. It is only in young men and women who have reached adolescence that this passion becomes troublesome. Men and women become slaves to passion. They become helpless.

There is not much difference in sex between a male and a female, a boy and a girl, when they are very young. When they attain puberty, there is a drastic change. Feelings, gestures, body, gait, talk, look, movements, voice, qualities and demeanour change altogether.

The whole mango tree - with all its branches, leaves and fruits - is contained in a subtle form in the seed. It takes time for manifestation. Even so, the Vasana of lust lurks in the mind when you are a boy, manifests at eighteen, fills the whole body at twenty-five, works havoc from twenty-five to forty-five and then gradually declines. Various forms of wrong-doing and mischief are committed by human beings between twenty-five and forty-five. This is the most critical period of life.

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Sexual thought in sages, spiritual aspirants and householders

In a Jnani, the sexual craving is entirely eradicated. In a Sadhaka, it remains well controlled. In a householder, when not controlled, it does havoc. It exists in him in its fully expanded state. He cannot resist it. He yields to it helplessly on account of his weak will and lack of firm resolution.

In a Jnani or a sage, no sensual thoughts will crop up in the mind. There will not he any difference in feeling when he sees a beautiful young girl, a child or an old lady. He will see the one underlying, eternal, immortal Self in a female and a male. He will not have any difference of feeling when he touches a book, a log of wood, a piece of stone and the body of a female. There is no idea of sex in a Jnani. Such must be the condition of mind of a man who is established in Brahmacharya.

In an aspirant, there will be occasional sexual thoughts, but they are kept under check. They cannot do any havoc in him.

A passionate householder, however, becomes a prey to sexual thoughts. A passionate man of the world wants the constant company of his wife. The idea of sex is ingrained in him. It is very powerful. He wants everything to be done by his wife. Then only he is pleased. This is simply due to passion. After the death of his wife, he never relishes his food, even when it is prepared by expert cooks. Such persons are thoroughly unfit for the spiritual line. When a man feels disgust for the company of a woman and cannot tolerate her company, it is a sign to show the awakening of Vairagya in him.

If you keep lemon juice or tamarind juice in a golden cup, it is not spoiled or tainted. If you keep it in a brass or a copper vessel, it gets spoiled and becomes poisonous. Even so, if there are some Vishaya Vrittis or sensual thoughts in the pure mind of a person who practices constant meditation, they will not pollute the man and induce Vikara or passionate excitement. But if there are sensual thoughts in persons with impure minds, they cause immediate excitement in them when they come across sensual objects.

In the vast majority of persons, the sexual craving is very intense. They have got extreme sexual hankering. In some, the sexual desire occasionally comes, but passes off quickly. There is mere agitation only, of a simple nature in the mind. By the proper method of spiritual Sadhana, this also can be completely eradicated.

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Lust in men and in women

Though a lady appears to be gentle and soft, yet she becomes rude, rough and distinctly masculine when she becomes angry. The feminine grace vanishes when she comes under the influence of wrath, indignation, fury and resentment. Have you ever seen women fighting in the streets? Women are more jealous than men. They have more Moha and passion also. They are eight times more passionate than men. Women have more power of endurance. They are more emotional. Males are more rational.

Though females are more passionate, yet they have more power of restraint than males. After enticing men, they keep quiet. The real culprit is man only. He is aggressive. It is he who tastes the 'forbidden fruit' first. He is active. He goes out of control and loses his intellect, power of understanding and judgement when he is under the grip of passion and becomes the sporting lap-dog of woman. When once man falls into the trap or net spread out by woman, there is no escape for him.

Woman is passive. She only tempts and deludes man. She inflames and excites the heart of man. She smiles and glances and then keeps quiet. She waits. But man is the aggressor. He is the real culprit.

Man is the worst culprit. He is the real seducer. He is the aggressor. He is the violator. All women would have become Miras, Madalasas and Sulabhas had it not been for this vilest nature of man. He must be corrected and moulded first. He has not got so much self-restraint as women have. Women are eight times more passionate than men, but possess eight times more strength of control over the sexual impulses or the sexual urge. This is the weakness of man, though he may be physically and intellectually more powerful than a woman.

Women flatter, coax and cajole you. They are experts in the art of blandishment. They have made you a slave by their winning expressions, actions, youthful charm, coquettish glances, gestures and smile. A considerable portion of your life has been wasted pursuing the phantoms of flesh. Women appear charming only for a short time, but turn destructive of health and happiness soon after. Beware of these temptresses who entangle you by their blandishments. Pass your remaining days at least on the holy banks of the Ganga in silent Japa and meditation.

The scorpion has the venom in its tail, the cobra in its fangs, the mosquito in its saliva and the scandal-monger in his tongue. Woman has poisoned arrows in her eyes. She sends the message of passion to the lustful youth and pierces their heart through the poisoned arrows that dart from her piercing glances. But, she cannot do any harm to a Viveki who is always on the alert and who sees the Doshas of a woman and who knows the Sat-Chit-Ananda, pure nature of Atman.

There are tongues and telegraphic instruments in the eyes of young passionate ladies. They send their love shafts and love messages through their smiling glances to passionate young men and thereby allure and bewitch them. Those young men who have no discrimination are excited by these love messages and become a prey to lust. 'They become pleasure-deer or sporting lap-dogs of ladies, though they possess academic education and hold high position and title. What a shame! Reason, will, intellect vanish altogether. O aspirants! Do not be very familiar with any woman. You should not sacrifice a noble ideal of life for the sake of pleasing a bewitching woman. Think of the composition of the body. Keep the mental image of the dead body of a woman or a skeleton whenever passion troubles you. You will slowly gain strength to subdue the passion. Vairagya will slowly dawn. The cause for attraction towards women is the presence of Vasanas or subtle desires in the mind. Wipe them out. There will be no attraction. Those who have renounced women and money have really renounced the world.


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4. SEX IS IN IMAGINATION

Sex is the distinction between male and female. It is a mental creation. It is a Kalpana or imagination. There is no sex in the five elements of which the body is composed. The human body is nothing but a combination of the five elements. How, then, has the sex idea come? The sex idea is illusory. It is a trick of the mind. It is jugglery of Maya. It is a notion. The sex-idea is deep-rooted. Man can never think that he is a female. A female can never think that she is a male.

For a liberated sage, this world is full of Brahman only. For a passionate man, this world is full of woman. He falls in love with a wooden post if it is wrapped in a silken gown or a beautiful cloth with attractive borders and a petticoat. Passion is a terrible curse. When a man is under the influence of passion, excitement and the sex impulse or force destroy his understanding and reason, overwhelm his mind and make him utterly helpless.

A householder who has rightly understood the magnitude of the sufferings of Samsara tries to get rid of the Samsaric life. Whereas, a bachelor full of passion imagines that he is very miserable on account of the absence of a wife and children and tries to get married. This is Maya. This is a mental trick. Beware.

A passionate bachelor is ever thinking: "When can I live with a young wife?" A dispassionate householder in whom Viveka has dawned is ever thinking: "When can I disentangle myself from the clutches of my wife and retire into the forests for contemplation on Atman?" You must think over the difference.

Thousands of young graduates and young doctors come to me with earthen pots in their hands, attired in orange-coloured robes, in quest of caves in Uttarakashi and Gangotri for deep meditation and practice of Pranayama. And some young research students in science and some Rajakumars go to Punjab and Kashmir in silk suits with stiff collars and ties in search of girls for marriage. Is there pleasure or pain in this world? If there is pleasure, why do the young educated men retire into forests? If there is pain, why do young men run after wealth, women and position? Mysterious is Maya! Mysterious is Moha! Try to understand the riddle of life and the riddle of the universe.

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Beauty is a mental concept

Maya havocs through the imagination of the mind. Woman is not beautiful, but the imagination is beautiful. Sugar is not sweet, but the imagination is sweet. Food is not palatable, but the imagination is palatable. Man is not weak, but the imagination is weak. Understand the nature of Maya and mind and become wise. Curb this imagination of the mind by Vichara or right thinking and rest in Brahman wherein there is neither imagination nor thought.

Beauty and ugliness are false imaginations of the mind. Mind itself is a false illusory product. Conceptions of the mind also must therefore be false. They are all like a mirage in the desert. What is beautiful for you is ugly for another. Beauty and ugliness are relative terms. Beauty is only a mental concept. It is only a mental projection. It is only a civilized man who talks much of the symmetry of form, good features, graceful gait, elegance of manners and graceful form. An African Negro has no idea of all these things. Real beauty is in the Self only. Beauty resides in the mind and not in the objects. Mango is not sweet; the idea of mango is sweet. It is all Vritti. It is all mental deception, mental conception, mental creation, mental Srishti. Destroy the Vritti; beauty vanishes. The husband stretches his own idea of beauty in his ugly wife and finds her very beautiful through passion. Shakespeare has rightly expressed this in his "Mid-summer-Night's Dream": "Cupid is painted blind. It finds Helen's beauty in the brow of Egypt".

The Indriyas and the mind delude you at every moment. They are your real enemies. Beauty is a product of mental creation. Beauty is a product of the imagination. An ugly woman appears very beautiful only in the eyes of her husband. Where is the beauty, my dear friends, in the wrinkled skin of an old woman? Where is the beauty when your wife is bedridden? Where is the beauty when your wife gets angry? Where is the beauty in the dead body of a woman? The beauty in the face is a mere reflection. The real undecaying Beauty of beauties - the fountain of beauties - can be found in the Atman only. You have ignored the substance and caught hold of a broken piece of glass. What a serious blunder have you committed by your impure thoughts, impure mind, impure Buddhi and impure way of living! Have you realized your mistake? Will you open your eyes at least now?

A beautiful wife is very charming. She is very sweet when she is young, when she smiles, when she puts on beautiful dress, when she sings and plays on the piano or the violin, when she dances in the ballroom. But she is horrible to look at when she loses her temper, when she quarrels with her husband for not getting silk sarees and gold necklace, when she suffers from acute abdominal colic or some such disease and when she becomes old.

For a few years Nature bestows on woman her gift of special beauty, charm and elegance in order that she may capture the hearts of men. Beauty is skin-deep only. It will soon fade, the hair will become gray and the skin will soon be filled with wrinkles. The tailor, the weaver, the embroiderer, the toilet maker and the goldsmith make us beautiful for a few seconds. Man, in his excitement, infatuation and delusion, forgets this point. This is Maya. Never trust this Maya. Beware. O man, wake up! Find out the Beauty of beauties, which is within you, which is your innermost Self. O woman! Sing like Mira and merge in Mira's Girdhar Nagar.

Have you ever paused and considered what constitutes the basic' ladies who excite lust in you? A bundle of bones, flesh, blood, urine, faecal matter, pus, perspiration, phlegm and other dirt! Will you allow such a bundle to become the master of your thoughts? Will you exchange your birthright of eternal peace and happiness for such a fleeting, filthy mess of pottage? Shame on you! Were your will, your reason and your discrimination given to you only for such an inglorious end? Have you not heard and seen that physical beauty is only skin-deep and at the mercy of every passing accident, illness and year?

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Misleading descriptions of a woman's beauty

Poets have exaggerated the beauty of ladies. They are misguided persons who put young men on the wrong path. Descriptions like "damsels with bewitching eyes", "face like the moon", "rosy cheeks and honeyed lips" are false and imaginary. Where is the beauty in the dead body, in old women, in sick ladies? Where is the beauty when a lady is infuriated? You are aware of this and yet you cling to their bodies! Are you not confirmed fools! This is due to the force of Maya. How mysterious is the power of Maya and Moha! The beauty of a woman is false, artificial and decaying. Real beauty is undecaying and eternal. The Atman is the source of all beauties. His beauty is everlasting and undecaying. It is ornaments, silken clothing with fanciful borders, dressing of the hair with golden hairpins, flowers, application of powder to their faces, lipstick to the lips and unguent to their eyes that lend a temporary decoration and artificial glittering to the women. Deprive them of their face powders, their ornaments and gaudy dress, and ask them to wear a simple white cloth without any border. Where is the beauty now? The beauty of the skin is a delusion only.

Poets describe in their fanciful, passionate moods that honey flows from the lips of a young, beautiful lady. Is this really true? What do you actually see? The stinking pus from the sockets of the teeth that are affected with dreadful pyorrhoea, the nasty and abdominal sputum from the throat, and foul saliva dribbling on the lips at night - do you call all this as honey and nectar? And yet, the passionate, lustful and sex-intoxicated man swallows these filthy excretions when he is under the sway of excitement! Is there anything more revolting than this? Are not these poets culpable, when they have given such a false description, when they have caused great havoc and damage to passionate young men?

Behind the shining skin there is the raw flesh. Behind the smiles of a young lady are hidden frown and anger. Behind the rosy lips lie germs of diseases. Behind the gentleness and kind words are hidden harsh words and abuses. Life is fleeting and uncertain, O passionate man! Realize the beauty of the Atman in the heart. The body is the abode for diseases. The net of affection in this world is strengthened by long indulgence. It has entwined its thick knotted twine around your neck.

Minus skin, minus dress, minus ornaments, woman is nothing. Just imagine for a moment that her skin is removed. You will have to stand by her side with a long stick to drive away crows and vultures. Physical beauty is superficial, illusory and fading. It is skin-deep. Do not be deluded by external appearances. It is the jugglery of Maya. Go to the source, Atman, the beauty of beauties, the everlasting beauty.

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Passion blinds the intellect

Sexual pleasure is an illusion. It is Bhranti Sukha. It is no real happiness at all. It is mere nerve tickling. All worldly pleasures appear as nectar in the beginning. They become poison in the end. Reflect well, O Saumya, my beloved son! Do not be led away by impulses and passion. Nobody has been benefited in this world by this Maya. People weep in the end. Ask any grown-up householder whether he finds even an iota of happiness in this world.

The fly runs towards the fire or lamp thinking that it is a flower and gets burnt up. Even so, the passionate man runs towards a false beautiful form thinking that he can get there the real happiness and gets himself burnt up in the fire of lust.

Just as the silkworm entangles itself in its self-woven cocoon, so also, you have entangled yourself in the meshes of your own desires. Tear the meshes by the knife of dispassion and soar high in the realm of eternal peace on the wings of devotion and knowledge.

A passionate man is a real blind man. Though he may be an intellectual man, he becomes blind when he is under the sway of sexual excitement. His intellect proves to be of no use when he suffers from this kind of blindness. Pitiable is his lot! Satsanga, prayer, Japa, enquiry and meditation will eradicate this dire disease and bestow on him the eye of wisdom.

There is no sex in the elements. There is mind in the body, which is made up of these elements. There is Kalpana in the mind. And that Kalpana or desire for lust is sex desire. If you kill this mind, which is a bundle of desires, you kill lust and everything. Kill that Kalpana. You will have no lust then. You have killed lust.

The sex idea is a mental creation. The whole Maya or Avidya is nothing but the body-idea or the sex idea. The whole spiritual Sadhana is calculated to destroy this one idea. The extinction of this one idea alone is Moksha!


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5. THE DISASTROUS EFFECTS OF SEXUAL INDULGENCE

The most devitalising and demoralizing of pleasures is the sex pleasure. Sensual enjoyment is attended with various defects. It is attended with various sorts of sins, pains, weaknesses, attachments, slave mentality, weak will, severe exertion and struggle, craving and mental restlessness. Worldly persons never come to their proper senses although they get severe knocks, kicks and blows from different corners. The strolling street dog never stops from visiting the houses even though it is pelted with stones every time.

Eminent doctors of the West say that various kinds of diseases arise from the loss of semen, particularly in young age. There appear boils on the body, acne or eruptions on the face, blue lines around the eyes, absence of beard, sunken eyes, pale face with anaemia, loss of memory, loss of eye-sight, shortsightedness, discharge of semen along with urine, enlargement of the testes, pain in the testes, debility, drowsiness, laziness, gloominess, palpitation of the heart, dyspnoea or difficulty in breathing, phthisis, pain in the back, loins, head and joints, weak kidneys, passing urine in sleep, fickle-mindedness, lack of thinking power, bad dreams, wet dreams and restlessness of mind.

Mark carefully the evil after-effects that follow the loss of seminal energy! Persons are physically, mentally and morally debilitated by wasting the seminal power on so many occasions for nothing. The body and the mind refuse to work energetically. There is physical and mental lethargy. You experience much exhaustion and weakness. You will have to take recourse to drinking milk, to eating fruits and aphrodisiac confections, to make good the loss of energy. Remember that these things can never, never repair the loss completely. Once lost is lost for ever. You will have to drag on a dreary, cheerless existence. Bodily and mental strength gets diminished day by day.

Those who have lost much of their Veerya become very irritable. Little things upset their minds. Those who have not observed the vow of celibacy become the slaves of anger, jealousy, laziness and fear. If you have not got your senses under control, you venture to do foolish acts which even children will not dare to do.

He who has wasted the vital energy becomes easily irritable, loses his balance of mind and gets into a state of explosive fury for trifling things. When a man becomes furious, he behaves improperly. He does not know what he is exactly doing as he loses his power of reasoning and discrimination. He will do anything he likes. He will insult even his parents, Guru and respectable persons. It behoves, therefore, that the aspirant who is trying to develop good behaviour must preserve the vital energy. Preservation of this divine energy leads to the attainment of strong will-power, good behaviour, spiritual exaltation, and Sreyas or Moksha eventually.

Excessive sexual intercourse drains the energy enormously. Young men do not realize the value of the vital fluid. They waste this dynamic energy by immoderate copulation. Their nerves are tickled much. They become intoxicated. What a serious blunder they commit! It is a crime that demands capital punishment. They are slayers of Atman. When this energy is once wasted, it can never be recouped by any other means. It is the most powerful energy in the world. One sexual act shatters completely the brain and the nervous system. People foolishly imagine that they can recover the lost energy by taking milk, almonds and Makaradhvaja. This is a mistake. You must try your level best to preserve every drop although you are a married man. Self-realization is the goal.

The energy that is wasted during one sexual intercourse is tantamount to the energy that is spent in physical labour for ten days or the energy that is utilized in mental work for three days. Mark how precious is the vital fluid, semen! Do not waste this energy. Preserve it with great care. You will have wonderful vitality. When Veerya is not used, it is all transmuted into Ojas Sakti or spiritual energy and stored up in the brain. Western doctors know little of this salient point. Most of your ailments are due to excessive seminal wastage.

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Wet dream and voluntary copulation - A vital difference

A sexual act shatters the nervous system. The whole nervous system is shaken or agitated during the act. There is excessive loss of energy. More energy is wasted during coition. But it is not so when emission occurs during the dreaming state. In a wet dream, it may be the outflow of the prostatic juice only. Even if there is loss of the vital fluid, there is not much draining. The actual essence does not come out during wet dreams. It is only the watery prostatic juice with a little semen that is discharged during nocturnal pollutions. When nocturnal emission takes place, the mind which was working in the inner astral body suddenly enters the physical body vehemently in an agitated condition. That is the reason why emission takes place suddenly.

The night discharge may not stimulate the sexual desire. But a voluntary copulation, in the case of a sincere aspirant is highly detrimental to his spiritual progress. The Samskara created by the act will be very deep; and it will intensify or strengthen the force of the previous Samskaras that are already imbedded in the subconscious mind and will stimulate the sexual desire. It will be like pouring ghee in the fire that is slowly getting extinguished. The task of obliterating this new Samskara will be an uphill work. You should completely give up copulation. This mind will try to delude you in a variety of ways by giving wrong counsel. Be on the alert. Do not hear its voice, but try to hear the voice of the conscience or the voice of the soul or the voice of discrimination.

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Youth with bloodless faces

A good lot of energy is wasted during copulation. Bad memory, premature old age, impotence, various sorts of eye diseases and various nervous diseases are attributable to the heavy loss of this vital fluid. It is greatly shocking indeed to see many of our youth walking with tottering steps, with pale, bloodless faces owing to loss of this vital fluid, instead of jumping hither and thither with agile, nimble steps with vigour and vitality like the squirrel. Some people are so passionate and weak that even the thought or sight or touch of a woman causes discharge of semen. Pitiable is their lot!

What do we see in these days? Boys and girls, men and women, are drowned in the ocean of impure thoughts, lustful desires and little sensual pleasures. It is highly deplorable indeed. It is really shocking to hear the stories of some of these boys. Many college boys have personally come to me and narrated their pitiable lives of gloom and depression brought about by heavy loss of semen resulting from unnatural means. Their power of discrimination has been lost owing to sexual excitement and lustful intoxication. Why do you lose the energy that is gained in many weeks and months for the sake of the little, momentary sensual pleasure?


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6. THE VALUE OF SEMEN

My dear brothers! The vital energy, the Veerya that supports your life, which is the Prana of Pranas, which shines in your sparkling eyes, which beams in your shining cheeks, is a great treasure for you. Remember this point well. Veerya is the quintessence of blood. One drop of semen is manufactured out of forty drops of blood. Mark here how valuable this fluid is!

A tree draws the essence or Rasa from the earth. This essence is circulated throughout the tree, its twigs, branches, leaves, flowers and fruits. The shining colours and life in the leaves, flowers and fruits are due to this Rasa. Similarly, the Veerya that is manufactured by the cells of the testes out of blood gives colour and vitality to the human body and its different organs.

According to Ayurveda, semen is the last Dhatu that is formed out of food. Out of food is manufactured chyle. Out of chyle comes blood. Out of blood comes flesh. Out of flesh comes fat. Out of fat comes bone. Out of bone comes marrow. Out of marrow comes semen. These are the Sapta Dhatus or the seven Dhatus that support this life and body. Mark here how precious is semen! It is the last essence. It is the Essence of essences. The Veerya comes out of the very marrow that lies concealed inside the bones.

There are three divisions in each Dhatu. Semen nourishes the physical body, the heart and the intellect. Only that man who uses the physical body, the heart and the intellect can have perfect Brahmacharya. A wrestler who uses his physical body only, but keeps the intellect and the heart undeveloped, cannot expect to have full Brahmacharya. He can have Brahmacharya of the body only, but not of the mind and the heart. The semen that belongs to the heart and the mind will certainly flow out. If an aspirant does only Japa and meditation, if he does not develop the heart, and if he does not practice physical exercise, he will have only mental Brahmacharya. The portion of the semen, which goes to nourish the heart and the body, will flow out. But an advanced Yogi who dives deep in meditation will have full Brahmacharya even if he does not take physical exercise.

Semen is the quintessence of food or blood. One drop of semen in manufactured out of forty drops of blood according to modern medical science. According to Ayurveda, it is elaborated out of eighty drops of blood. The two testes or seeds that are located in the scrotal bag are called secretory glands. The cells of these testes have been endowed with the peculiar property of secreting semen from the blood. Just as bees collect honey in the honeycomb drop by drop, so also, the cells of the testes collect semen drop by drop from the blood. Then this fluid is taken by the two ducts or tubes to the vesiculae seminalis. Under excitement, it is thrown out by special ducts, called ejaculatory ducts, into the urethra where it is mixed with the prostatic juice.

Semen is found in a subtle state in all the cells of the body. Just as sugar is all-pervading in the sugar-cane, butter in milk, so also, semen is pervading the whole body. Just as the butter milk is thin after the butter is removed, so also, semen is thinned by its wastage. The more the wastage of semen the more is the weakness. In the Yoga Sastras it is said:

Maranam Bindu Patanat,
Jivanam Bindu Rakshanat.

Falling of semen brings death; preservation of semen gives life. Semen is the real vitality in men. It is the hidden treasure in man. It imparts Brahma-Tejas to the face and strength to the intellect.

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Modern medical opinion

Eminent European medical men also support the statement of the Yogins of India. Dr. Nicole says: "It is a medical and physiological fact that the best blood in the body goes to form the elements of reproduction in both the sexes. In a pure and orderly life, this matter is reabsorbed. It goes back into circulation ready to form the finest brain, nerve and muscular tissues. This vital fluid of man carried back and diffused through his system makes him manly, strong, brave and heroic. If wasted, it leaves him effeminate, weak and physically debilitated and prone to sexual irritation and disordered function, a wretched nervous system, epilepsy, and various other diseases and death. The suspension of the use of the generative organs is attended with a notable increase of bodily and mental and spiritual vigour."

If the spermatic secretion in men is continuous, it must either be expelled or be reabsorbed. As a result of the most patient and persevering scientific investigations, it has been found that whenever the seminal secretions are conserved and thereby reabsorbed into the system, it goes towards enriching the blood and strengthening the brain. Dr. Dio Louis thinks that the conservation of this element is essential to strength of body, vigour of mind and keenness of intellect. Another writer, Dr. E.P. Miller, says: "All waste of spermatic secretions, whether voluntary or involuntary, is a direct waste of the life force. It is almost universally conceded that the choicest element of the blood enters into the composition of the spermatic secretion. If these conclusions are correct, then it follows that a chaste life is essential to man's well-being."

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Mind, Prana and Veerya

Mind, Prana and Veerya are the three links of one chain. They are the three pillars of the edifice of Jivatma. Destroy one pillar - mind, Prana or Veerya - and the whole building will fall to pieces.

Mind, Prana and Veerya are one. By controlling the mind, you can control Prana and semen. By controlling Prana you can control the mind and semen. By controlling semen, you can control the mind and Prana.

Mind, Prana and Veerya are under the one Sambandha or connection or circuit. If the mind is controlled, Prana and Veerya are controlled automatically. He who suspends or restrains Prana restrains also the working of the mind and the movement of the Veerya. Again, if the Veerya is controlled, and if it is made to flow upwards into the brain by pure thoughts and the practice of Viparita Karani Mudras such as Sarvangasana and Sirshasana and Pranayama, the mind and the Prana are automatically controlled.

The mind is set in motion or rendered active by two things - the vibration of Prana and the Vasanas or subtle desires. Where the mind is absorbed, there the Prana is restrained; and where the Prana is fixed, there the mind also is absorbed. Mind and Prana are intimate companions, like a man and his shadow. If the mind and the Prana are not restrained, all the organs of sensation and action keep actively engaged in their respective functions.

When a man is excited by passion, the Prana is set in motion. Then the whole body obeys the dictate of the mind just as a soldier obeys the command of his commander. The vital air or Prana moves the internal sap or semen. The semen is put into motion. It falls downwards, just as the clouds burst into rain water, just as the fruits, flowers and leaves of the trees drop down by the force of the blowing winds.

If the Veerya is lost, Prana gets unsteady. Prana is agitated. The man becomes nervous. Then the mind also cannot work properly. The man becomes fickle-minded. There is mental weakness.

If the Prana is rendered steady, the mind also becomes steady. If the Veerya is steady, the mind also is steady. If the Veerya is steady, the mind also is steady. If the Drishti or vision is steady, the mind also becomes steady. Therefore, control the Prana, the Veerya and the Drishti.

God is Rasa. Raso Vai Sah. Rasa is Veerya, the vital fluid or semen. You can get eternal bliss by the attainment of Rasa or Veerya only. Rasohyevayam Labdhva Anandi Bhavati.

Grasp fully the importance and value of this vital essence of life. Veerya is all power. Veerya is all money. Veerya is God. Veerya is Sita. Veerya is Radha. Veerya is Durga. Veerya is God in motion. Veerya is dynamic Will. Veerya is Atma-Bal. Veerya is God's Vibhuti. The Lord says in the Gita: "Paurusham Nrishu. I am the seed or virility in men". Veerya is the essence of life, thought, intelligence and consciousness. Therefore, preserve this vital fluid very, very carefully, my dear readers!

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