T Nation

Celibacy


#1

This is a branch topic from the Atheism-o-phobia thread because I don't want to further muddy that one with yet another subject.

Why is celibacy, the act of abstaining from sex, (NOT changing a sexual orientation) viewed as one of the ultimate taboos? (usually by, haha, moral "relativists," :wink:

We are members of a bodybuilding site. I've twice dieted down for a show. Strict, by-the-book, hard deprivation. For three months, most of the stuff I wanted, I abstained from. Most people here would find that rather admirable.

But...when the topic moves to sex, suddenly it's OMGZ he's turn into teh P3d0!!!

Can anyone show me any studies, anywhere, that simple celibacy causes any kind of psychological damage, or even slight negative changes within the individual?

It's been practiced for thousands of years as a purification rite and a form of strengthening through deprivation, along with fasting and other not-fun acts. I believe that only in modern, anything-MUST-go sexually "liberated" society has this act suddenly been turned into an evil.

I'm going to bed so sorry if I don't jump right in on the discussion. Japan-time :frowning:


#2

Celibacy in and of itself is not necessarily bad for you. However, men who do not ejaculate regularly are more likely to have certain health risks and women who are not exposed to male sperm have higher rates of depression because their bodies are biochemically wired to receive it in a mood altering manner.


#3

Celibacy is bad for me. I would jump in front of a semi if I could not have sex. That means celibacy is dangerous and should be avoided at all times. More power to ya if you want to be celibate though.


#4

psychological damage would greatly depend on how much celibacy is or is not socially acceptable in your environment.


#5

..what's the reason for a priest's celibacy in the Catholic Church again?


#6

If people want to choose celibacy, more power to them. Personally, I think they're missing out on one of life's greatest joys (and I'm talking about the deep emotional/spiritual bonding with the person you've chosen to spend your life with that sex facilitates, not just about the physical pleasure of sex). But if celibacy makes them happy, whose business is it?

I do think it's unfortunate when people choose celibacy for reasons not supported by objective facts, but again that is their choice.

Also, I think you need to differentiate between permanent and temporary celibacy. There's a difference between dieting down for a show, and starving yourself for the rest of your life.


#7

Celibacy can't be likened to dieting, unless you are abstaining from food completely. Water, food and sex are the three things that are essential to life (when moderated), saying no thanks for any of them has disastrously negative effects on the human mind/body. Same deal with overindulgence in these things.


#8

To keep altar boys awake and alert every Sunday.


#9

It's a discipline (not a dogma or doctrine) that produces priests capable of service anywhere, and available to the parishoners and Church, undivided. Unmarried priests are married to service, if you don't mind a little sentimental language. It's best to remember that the church doesn't require celibacy of the faithful. though. Marriage is a holy vocation. It merely elects it's priests from candidates who've voluntarily chosen the celibate life.


#10

Some people just think that if your're not having sex, that you're a "Loser". Pretty cliche but majority of people still think that way. Whether it be for moral/Religous issues or just abstaining for other personal reasons I think people should just chill the heck out when it comes to that stuff.

Sex and the abscence of it in someone's life for more than one reason is a popular bullying topic for Kids in high school and college. "Oh look at him he's a dork, he doesn't prolly get any! Don't you dork?" I mean come on. We as a society have become sooooo Oversexualized with everything from Television shows and movies to marketing and clothing. Theres so much pressure on everyone from kids to adults to have sex nowadays. IF you choose to have sex..cool whatever, it's your choice. But don't come down hard on someone who chooses to wait for marriage, wants to go into seminary or just plain can't get any.

My gf and I are both Christian, and we choose not to get too hot and heavy with stuff but are still intimate enough for both our liking. IDK if I'm even going to marry her....I'm still 24, but I loose mad respect for chicks who were willing to get down on the first date. Thats how it was all in college and I never called any of those chicks back.


#11

Alright, Mak, you are going to have to provide some evidence if you want to drop bombs like these.

So far in this thread we've had personal experience, personal perception, and then this post as reasons against.

I do agree with you and forlife above that there should be a distinction made between temporary and permanent celibacy (the correct terms would actually be abstinence and celibacy, respectively).

One thing to think about, however, is that the body and mind adapt to extended conditions, so long as there is a minimum of vacillation in one's resolve and a clear goal or purpose for the enduring. For example, if you get in to the habit of eating junk food, it is harder and harder to avoid it, whereas the opposite also holds, if you practice the discipline of abstinence, you will not be subject to the same level of temptation and stimulation you otherwise would have.

Also, there are benefits to celibacy, as well. It's is not a 100% negative or else it would never have been "invented."

And for those who posters popping in and out with their clever, drive-by comments, yes, we understand that you are manly and have sex many times a day. High five.


#12

I think the best way to actually achieve celibacy is to get married and stay married for a prolonged period of time.

Ha ha..just kidding dear.


#13

Agreed.

This is one of those hyper-emotional topics because so many people today have made libertinism into a religion of its own, tying sexuality inextricably into their identification of themselves. And any threat to anything less than 100% allowance of any sexual proclivity whatsoever is very often met with a rabid, hyper-emotional, mean, bullying, wholly unfounded, screaming to drown out any further discussion.

Just watch.


#14

I know right? I mean, it's like, why can't people just chill the heck out and respect your choice? Let me tell you, abstaining is way harder than not. People are so busy High fiving guys that nail uber amounts of chicks, but the guy who chooses a different path that's actually more challenging is snubbed.

I guess it's a matter of perspective, cause having might be harder for some than not having, but, if you're good looking and you take care of your body like the majority of people here, then I say it's a challenge.

But ultimately it's all about respecting where people are at in their lives, and WHY they are making the choices they are when It comes to that stuff.


#15

You got the idea!


#16

These are some specific claims there Niner, can we get some studies?


#17

hmm
i don't think our contemporaries have made libertinism into a religion.
they have made self-indulgence into a religion.

libertinism, in its original definition, implied some kind of mastery over the passions and drives of the flesh.
the libertines were fine wines amateurs, now we have become drunkards.

also, celibacy has been viewed as an "heroic" feat during dozens of centuries.

then, Freud came and gave us another explanation. pathology, neurosis. psychological repression.
heroism and asceticism became pretty suspects.

celibacy was a proof of the purity of the soul. it is now an evidence of the perversity of the unconscious.

we are just starting to see the consequences of this shift.
even people who don't adhere to Freud's dogma use his words and his concepts everyday, without even noticing it.

edit :
oh, and as a side note : not having sex before marriage is another thing entirely.
it was easier when people were married before 20.
now, we have 5 or 7 seven more years to wait. on average.


#18

Good post, as usual kamui. Self-indulgence, and, more specifically, the "right" to indulge one's every desire.


#19

Well, you certainly have the right.

It is inevitable that some people will make bad choices.


#20

I must be getting good. I can actually predict what you'll say now, almost to the phrasing you will use.

So why is it a bad choice?

Edit: Sorry, never mind, I'm stupid. I completely misread your intended subject.