Q: Gurudev it is said that on the spiritual path celibacy is an important component for progress. How to bring about celibacy in the mind? Is celibacy something physical or more in the mind?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: It is both.Celibacy happens, you cannot force it on yourself.
See, if you have an exam and you are studying for the exam, on those days, all students inevitably say, ‘We have no thoughts of sex, we are so busy with our exams.’
Similarly, you have a very important project to complete and you are working hard, then also celibacy happens automatically.
Also through meditation;when energy rises in you, you find such bliss, such thrill, and such ecstasy within you that celibacy happens automatically. In fact, it is a pain to be outwardly.
Celibacy is the effect of the mind being inward, when you see that all this is nothing; everything is nothing. If at all anything is happening, it is happening from the subtle plane .Connection with the subtle plane makes actions here almost irrelevant,and that is when celibacy happens.
That does not mean you should say, ‘Oh, when it happens, let it happen, right now let me be indulgent. No!’
One professor from Middle East said something very interesting. She said that every fluid in the body is connected to the fluid in the brain, and any fluid lost causes the brain fluid to go down by 20%. It is a big research work that they have been doing.
So that is why, in the past people have said that if you are a student, and you need to do brainy work, then you must attach celibacy with it.
So, the first 25 years, one should practice Brahmacharya(An educational period which starts before the age of puberty, characterized by the practice of strict celibacy).
And then from 25 to 50 years - Grihasthashram (Family life). Then you can have the pleasure and enjoyment of family life, but not after 50.
After 50, slowly you have to come down, otherwise it will become an obsession for you.
When people have this obsession, the body cannot perform, but the mind is feverish about it.Body and mind should go together. Otherwise, this is a sort of disease I would say, like bulimia.Your body says no more food, but the mind says, no, stuff more in.
Like this, people who are 70 or 80, they go and sit and watch pornography, even though they cannot do anything!This is a sorry state of affairs.This is not Brahmacharya.It is the mind that is not in the right sense.
Moderation is what is called Brahmacharya; moderation is celibacy.