Too often mass media focuses on imagery or messages related to sexuality as a ploy for getting attention to draw more viewers to a TV program, sell music and movie tickets, or generate more page views on a website, but there is so little information about the positive aspects of celibacy. The Dalai Lama, who is one of the most respected and admired individuals in the world due to his compassion and happiness, has said this about sex, “Naturally as a human being…some kind of desire for sex comes, but then you use human intelligence to make comprehension that those relationships are always full of trouble. Sexual pressure, sexual desire, actually, I think is short-period satisfaction and, often, that leads to more complication,” he said. (Source: Telegraph) Below are just some of the benefits of celibacy.
- Avoid getting HIV or Hepatitis C, which can lead to death
- Avoid getting HPV which can lead to cervical cancer, or even throat cancer contracted from oral sex. Cervical cancer can spread cancer throughout the body, which may lead to death
- Reduce risk of other STDs such as herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, genital warts
- Reduce risk of unwanted pregnancy
- Reduce risk of marrying someone solely because of an unwanted pregnancy
- Reduce risk of abortion due to unwanted pregnancy, or giving up the baby for adoption due to lack of financial means
- Reduce risk of dropping out of high school or college due to an unwanted pregnancy; achieving one’s educational goals before getting pregnant
A yoga practitioner who made the choice to become celibate said this of her experience: “Brahmacharya has changed my perception of myself, of others, of everything. It’s been so interesting to realize how much of my ego-self was bound up with sexuality and sexual desire. And the effect on my sadhana [spiritual practice] has been most profound. I’m not sure I can put it into words. Let’s just say there’s definitely a good reason why all spiritual traditions recommend celibacy. Sex is great, but no sexual experience-and I’ve had a lot of them-could even come close to this.”
(Source: Yoga Journal)
- Do not contribute to overpopulation, arguably the greatest contributor to environmental problems (Obviously this is from sex that leads to pregnancy, not other situations)
- Reduce or eliminate worrying about one’s body appearance to others
- Never waste money on lingerie or uncomfortable undergarments again
- Eliminate the chance of elective surgery such as breast or penile implants because you realize your worth has nothing to do with body image, and live that way
- Save money on contraception
Gandhi is also one of the more respected figures in world history and he also practiced celibacy at some point in his life. He wrote, “There should be a clear line between the life of a brahmachari and of one who is not. Both use their eyesight, but whereas the brahmachari uses it to see the glories of God, the other uses it to see the frivolity around him. Both use their ears, but whereas the one hears nothing but praises of God, the other feasts his ears upon ribaldry. Both often keep late hours, but whereas the one devotes them to prayer, the other fritters them away in wasteful mirth.” (Source: Life Positive )
- Experience oneself as being worthy of being in a relationship that does not place an obligation on pleasuring another person
- Experience oneself as something other than a pleasure object for others
- Appreciate other human beings for who they are, not merely for their appearance, or for what pleasure they might provide to you
- Experience less mental and emotional attachment to a single person, when it is possible to have a more balanced social life
Even Lady Gaga, who is not renowned all around the world in the same way as someone like the Dalai Lama or Gandhi, has publicly referenced celibacy as being a positive experience, saying “I’m single right now and I’ve chosen to be single because I don’t have the time to get to know anybody. So it’s OK not to have sex, it’s OK to get to know people. I’m celibate, celibacy’s fine.” (Source: Huffington Post)
- Eliminate the risk of becoming a sex addict.
- Eliminate the risk of becoming a pornography addict.
- No longer entertain the notion something might be wrong with you for being less interested sex, or choosing a different path.
- Understand the difference between sex and love
- Understand love is not limited to romantic relationships
Celibacy has been also been described as the reason one woman lived to celebrate her 107th birthday. The model Adriana Lima also stated celibacy was a part of her life, and sex was for marriage. Lenny Kravitz was reported to have become celibate, as a preparation to being in a stable marriage not based on physical desire.
Image Credit: Luca Galuzzi / Wiki Commons
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