Of all the methods and techniques to improve concentation, memory, courage, and positivity, Abstinence – Brahmacharya is the novel most and greatest technique, if you have some faith in spirituality. Though it looks like a spiritual belief, Ayurveda also approves of benefits of abstinence.
- Abstinence means Brahmacharya in Sanskrit. Abstinence refers to refraining one’s mind and body in indulgence of sex and sex related matters.
- At the outset, it appears as if it covers only physical aspect. But it also covers the mental aspect.
- If you indulge in sex, there is lack of abstinence at the same time, if you imagine about having sex, then also there is lack of abstinence.
- Lack of abstinence is there if one thinks, sees, hears, chats, touches, indulgence with a desire of sex, there is lack of abstinence.
- It is almost near to impossible for common people to practice abstinence at the highest level but it is possible to follow abstinence at certain levels based on one’s own capacity and comfort.
Benefits of abstinence: Why abstinence?
- Brahmacharya is told as one among the three pillars of life. (other two are – food and sleep).
- Ayurveda details: The Ojas – the essence of immunity is told as byproduct of Shukra (the hormones, semen and other components of sex). Hence, preserving Shukra leads to improvement in immunity.
- Swamy Vivekananda was able to memorize whatever he used to glance, in a book. By reading a few lines of a paragraph, he used to get the meaning of the rest of the paragraph. He used to say that if one practices absolute abstinence for a period of 12 years, continuous, a special Nadi (nerve power) called Medha Nadi (Medha = intelligence) develops in one’s brain, which leads to tremendous memory and concentration.
- Abstinence leads to multi-fold improvement in concentration, memory and courage.
- For students, teenagers and children, abstinence is highly recommended.
- Abstinence leads to character building.
- Abstinence imbibes reliability, strength in character and trust worthiness.
- Abstinence is the fuel for spiritual journey. No spirituality without abstinence.
How to practice abstinence
- At the outset, it looks almost impossible to follow absolute abstinence. It depends upon one’s mind strength, practice and perseverance.
- If not full abstinence, teenagers can at least resolve to avoid sexual activities at least till a particular point of time in their lives.
- For married people, abstinence can be practiced at any available occasions, as in case of pregnancy, menstrual periods, being distant to each other etc.
- Keeping oneself away from stimulations such as TV, wrong company etc helps follow abstinence.
- Pranayama helps to keep the mind cool, calm and concentrated.
So, follow abstinence and be abstinent up to your capacity and till the time your mind is capable and enjoy its benefits.
Does night fall break the Brahmacharya?
Night fall is the common term, used for nocturnal emission, wherein the semen that is collected inside, overflows while the person is sleeping. This does not break Brahmacharya.
If retention of semen was the only criteria for celibacy, then a simple vasectomy operation would have made everyone to follow this noble path. But what actually matters, in following Brahmacharya is purity of heart and mind. Nothing else.