user_mobilelogo

Brahmacharya consists in replacing the desire for finite objects for the attraction towards the ultimate reality.

This Yama is about the nature of our relationship with all things. In the very bottom of this lies our tendency to see the objects of our desire as finite, and therefore want to spend all our energy in keeping them for ourselves. If we see everything as a manifestation of the divine, it will give us the inner understanding of the abundance of all things in the universe, so we can appreciate them, honour them and interact with them at that level, spending a balanced and appropriate amount of energy to do so.

Taking relationships as an example, we can often be tempted to believe that the other person belongs to us, and that can lead up to expectations, control, anger, jealousy, etc. If we have the inner realisation that love is an infinite gift, there's no place for those things, we can appreciate the other person for who they truly are, and that actually gives them the freedom to fully be who they are. The same can happen with everything we are involved in, situations, jobs, activities, material objects, among other things. So this is about reassessing the nature of our relationship with the different aspects of life.

Brahmacharya has been frequently translated as celibacy, and is therefore not very well understood or accepted. The main thing to understand in this front is that this in not really a matter of whether we use our sexual energy or not, but how we use it. Our sexual energy doesn't cease to exist just because we are practising celibacy, it will instead find another way to manifest. What we can consider according to this Yama is the nature of our relationship with our sexual energy, and whether it is bringing us closer or further away from our being.