We know very well that for accomplishing any job, we require energy. Any effort, any exertion, requires strength and energy. Energy can be gathered together only if it is conserved and preserved. But, if it is frittered away, you will not be able to accomplish your targets and would always be in debt. Just as, if you want to build a house or start a business, slowly you put by money and go on saving and then, put it in a fixed deposit in some bank, and then, after five years or ten years, you would have enough to start a business or build a house. But, if every month you spend more than you get, if every month your expenditure is more than your income, you would never dream of having a house or starting a business. Your plight will be miserable. Similarly, energy is to be conserved. Conservation of one’s energy in order to put it to higher use is the central principle of celibacy. Celibacy is a wise direction to make your efforts successful. Towards this end, you must conserve your energy. Because, if energy is sufficiently conserved, you can put it to any use that you want, you can attain anything that you wish to attain. But if you do not conserve energy, all attainment becomes difficult. It becomes a long-drawn struggle. So, preservation of energy is the essence of celibacy. Energy is frittered away in a dozen different directions. Too much talking, too much worry, too much wanting, getting fits of temper, anger, fighting and quarreling, the arguing habit, overeating—all these things drain away energy. All excesses, all immoderate habits, all wastage of nervous and emotional energy through negative thoughts of hatred, envy and jealousy and all health-killing habits like smoking and drinking—they also drain away energy. You need to control your senses and sense-control becomes an inevitable part of celibacy.
The over-functioning of any sense wastes away nervous, energy. That should be controlled, that should be wisely checked. And one of the most refined of energies, most concentrated of energies, is the sex energy. The sex energy is what we may call the quintessence of energies. It is the quintessence of all that we eat and assimilate and preserve in the system, in the same way as honey is the very quintessence of flowers, and butter is the very quintessence of milk. Thousands of bees go and bring nectar from millions of flowers and work upon it in a huge beehive, and out of that by some miracle of biochemistry, comes honey. Out of liters of milk or gallons of milk comes butter. In the same way, the sex energy is the most rarified and perfectly pure form of human physical energy. If that energy is wisely conserved, it becomes available to you for being converted into any other form of energy. For example, if you want to study hard and become a brilliant scholar with a wonderful memory, this energy comes to your aid. If you want to become a brilliant surgeon, this energy comes to your aid. If you want to become a great master musician, the preserved energy comes to your aid. This is because, this energy, when preserved, gradually becomes transformed into subtler energy. Of course, there are Yogic processes—Asanas, Pranayama, Surya-Namaskar, high emotions, noble emotions, spiritual sentiments and such other things—which help this work of transformation. So, the work of transformation goes on, and the energy becomes available for higher intellectual pursuits, research and invention, meditation and so on. And, therefore, the wise conservation of this vital energy has always been given an important place in all religions in the context of a spiritual life.
Our body is like a mansion. No matter how wonderful a mansion may be, even if it be made of marble and set with jewels, no one will be able to live in that mansion unless it has a kitchen and a bathroom and a toilet. Whatever man takes in, part of its goes to form his mind and body, the remaining waste has to be eliminated. And waste is always foul-smelling. The impurities of the body are always foul-smelling. You may construct any type of palace, but if there is no food, no lunch, no breakfast, no afternoon tea—even for a day—no one will live there. But then, when a kitchen is there, you have to provide drainage also. Kitchen means garbage, left-over food, vegetable cuttings, fruit peels and all that. If all this is kept, it will begin to rot and so you have to have a garbage disposal arrangement. You have to have drainage and sewerage. In the absence of all these arrangements, it will not be possible to live in that mansion.
Likewise, in the human body, in this mansion of various gates, where you have an entrance way and windows for light and air and knowledge, for the sake of drainage and garbage disposal, God has provided two holes. Their real importance is that of drainage. They are only drains. This is the only right understanding of the matter. No doubt, the occasional function of reproduction is there, but to over-exaggerate that aspect is foolish. It betrays a lack of knowledge. Because, from birth until death, day after day, thirty days in a month, and three hundred and sixty-five days in the year, the constant function that these exit gates have to fulfill is drainage. And the occasional function that they have to fulfill is in cooperating with God, but that are only some rare occasional functions, and that also, only in a very short period of one’s life when you lead married life and do it for procreation. Out of the whole life, it is only in one phase that that particular function of it is exercised. Otherwise, the main function of these outlets is only drainage of impurities. If you change your outlook and understand the body in the right perspective, then a great deal of your problem will be solved. It is taking a wrong view and giving a wrong emphasis which makes one to get into all sorts of difficulties. Secondly, take a look at it from the Vedantic point of view. The message and the primary declaration of Vedanta, is that you are not this body, but that you are the soul. Then, if you are not to identify yourself with your entire body, how can you identify yourself with one aspect of it? So, if your faith in Vedanta is firm and genuine, if you are true to your Vedanta, then, you have your solution in your own hand.
How to Rise Above sensual desires
There is another important angle to this matter of celibacy. And that pertains to your aim and ambition in life. What is it that you want out of life? What great desire dominates your life? Is there something that is a consuming hunger in you? Do you want to become the highest musical genius in this world? Or do you want to become the fastest Olympic runner or weightlifter in this world? No matter what your ambition is, if there is some one overwhelming or all-consuming hunger in you, then all other problems recede into the background. They do not present a great difficulty. But, if you do not have such an overwhelming ambition in one direction, then everything becomes a problem and sex also becomes a problem. Therefore, the right way of solving this problem of sex is to rise above it so that it becomes something not important. You have to rise above sex—not wrestle with it, but rise above it. Because, if you do not have an overall concentrated urge or ambition in life, then the clamor of these little senses becomes a great din in your life. Your life will always be under that clamor. But, if you have got an overwhelming urge for something else, then this clamor does not reach you at all, because you are too busy engaging your entire attention in some other direction. So, the right way of solving this situation of sex is to rise above it, by developing great love for God, great love for an ideal, developing passion for a pure life, a moral life, an ethical life, an ideal life and nurturing your ardent desire for attaining liberation. If intense desire is there, then all other things recede into the background. They become less important. So, if you want to attain victory over the clamor of the senses, you must arouse within yourself a great fire of higher aspiration. Then, what happens? In order to attain that upon which your heart is set, you give yourself so totally to it that you have no time for other things. Even great scientists do not have this problem, because they are all the time completely absorbed in their scientific research. They do not pay much importance to food or clothing or bathing or anything. Why? Because they are all absorbed in, and interested in, something else. That is the way of becoming established in celibacy, in successful celibacy, in effective celibacy.
Voluntary Self-restraint Is No Suppression
Sex is a natural urge and so free expression should be given to it. And if free expression is not given to it, the sex urge will become suppressed, will become repressed. And if it is thus suppressed and repressed, it will create all sorts of abnormalities within you and you will develop neurosis and various types of complex and you will become an abnormal person. There is partial truth in it. There is truth in it to the extent that if this suppression and repression is forced upon you by circumstances beyond your control, by social environment, by other taboos and deep-seated inhibitions within you, due to your father’s advice or mother’s dominance or family and all, then it can give rise to some undesirable inner abnormality. But this situation never applies if realizing the greatness of a higher goal and realizing the necessity of self-control in order to attain that goal, you make up your mind fully, willingly and voluntarily. Then, there is no question of suppression. If with a full willing heart you enter into this course of self-discipline and self-restraint, then there is no question of suppression. No one is asking you to do it. You want to do it. You are yourself desirous of it. So, done with full willingness, done with great enthusiasm, it becomes a voluntary thing. Then, psychological situations will not arise. On the contrary, every time you succeed in controlling the sense-urge, you get a sense of achievement; you get a sense of inner satisfaction that you have succeeded. So, it is something that goes on giving you endless satisfaction and a sense of triumph, a sense of overcoming. Therefore, it is entirely a positive process, a very creative and positive process, not a negative and suppressive process. So, regarding celibacy, if you take the right approach and attitude towards it, then it is simple. It is a question of conserving energy, of preserving energy, so that it may be utilized for higher things which you wish to attain.
Be Happy – you need to Conserve Energy in the Context of a Spiritual Life.