Open discussion on this subject was taboo until recently, and any reference to it was made in terms of: 'abuse of one's own person', 'self-play', 'solitary vice', 'solitary affair', or 'self-pleasing'.
Many young people have been informed on the negative consequences and on the dangers of this practice, and still they do not take them into consideration.
It is a fact of common knowledge that masturbation, followed by ejaculation , has frequently been the cause of serious nervous breakdowns.
The nuance of 'sin' or 'guilt' associated with the act of masturbation may induce (for a short while) a state of intense emotion, unfortunately a negative one, or a strange feeling of frenzy, similar to that of committing an abominable crime.
The experience of fear, in such moments may have an exciting immediate effect, but the consequences these feelings of fear have on the human psychic are devastating because they bring about processes of resonance with destructive energies from the Macrocosm .
Nonetheless, the past few years have witnessed a tendency of treating sexual issues in an open and straightforward manner. Among these issues, masturbation is quite frequent.
Thus, an analysis of the most popular magazines in the field indicates a growth of the interest on this subject. What used to be referred to as 'solitary vice' is now a form of therapy, a 'way of making love', or an important part in the repertoire of lovers proclaiming sexual freedom.
LET US NOW SEE THE WAY ORIENTAL TRADITION SEES THIS CONTROVERSIAL SUBJECT
First, there is a clear distinction between masturbation of a man and that of a woman. Second, the 'mutual masturbation', without ejaculation, of a man and a woman who are deeply in love with one another, is not masturbation, but part of the foreplay.
In the following, we will closely look upon each of these three 'forms' of masturbation and consider each of them individually.
Both Taoist and Tantric teachings are based on the idea that 'the most valuable asset of a man is his semen, and therefore it must never be discharged.
Medical studies have proved that the discharge of the vital substances contained in the sperm, in the case of a person who has not reached maturity is detrimental to his general state of health, because his organism will now lack important substances, essential to its functions.
In CHAKRA SAMHITA we find the following statement: 'if a young man, whose bodily substances are not yet crystallized/formed, masturbates, he will shortly lose his vigour and vitality.
If he goes on with this practice, his body will be fairly weakened, and his internal organs will have much to suffer. These things happen generally before the boy celebrates his 16th anniversary, age at which a man's body reaches maturity.'
The masturbation with ejaculation has many consequences at physical, emotional, and mental levels. As an isolated practice, the masturbation followed by ejaculation may have an exciting immediate effect, but in the end, it will only lead to the exhaustion of the sperm, in the sense that there is no possibility of 'compensating' this tremendous loss of energy through the absorption of vital fluids or energies from the woman.
Any form of pleasure that may appear in this case has a short life, without the support of a shared, happy experience with one's beloved (as in the case with sexual continence ) and without the beneficial exchange of energies between the two lovers.
The sexual continence implying the presence of our lover (of opposite sex) generate a kind of particular psychic paradisiacal space, which will stay in our memory as something unique and unforgettable.
Moreover, when making love like this, we can perceive the euphorically sublimation of the energies, as well as the transformation of primal energy into refined forms of energy, generating states of erotic ecstasy.
The secretion of sperm decreases with aging. It is also influenced by stress, anxiety, tiredness, and too much fasting, frequent ejaculation , either in lovemaking or masturbation. By losing the semen, fear, suspicion, egoism, lack of love, greed, tendency to see other people's flaws, through the absence of a woman's adequate erotic response to lovemaking, or through too much sexual abstinence, the man becomes unable to have intercourse.
The desire to masturbate may be brought about by several factors. When the energy on his sexual centre is awakened, the young man is usually tempted to explore his sexuality, playing with his LINGAM , but without ejaculating.
Thus, he may get to know the inner mechanisms of his body without losing his semen. This form of exploration of one's own sexuality (meaning without ejaculation) is harmless for the body; moreover, it may help the control over the impulse generating the process of ejaculation.
Self-pleasuring, but always without ejaculating may prove an important help for the young man who wishes to gain perfect control over his sexual energy (keep in mind that sexual continence - a desiderate for all yogis - implies perfect control over the sexual energy).
Moreover, this practice develops the awareness over the relationship between breath, thought and emission of the semen.
All these, if not followed by ejaculation, contribute to the consolidation of one's confidence in his sexual abilities, an important aspect of a healthy, and happy love life.
The careful observation of the stages in excitement preceding ejaculation may indicate the ways to practice the sexual continence further on.
The fundamental key in obtaining the control over ejaculation is breath retention and visualization of the sexual energy circulating through and nourishing his body.
The Oriental teachings are totally against the ejaculation while masturbating. They suggest that the men who live separately from their wives should practice Hatha - Yoga positions, meditation, and respiratory exercises in order to transform the sexual energy into more refined forms of energy, and to sublimate it.
If engaged in the practice of sexual continence, both man and woman should have as their goal the harmonious sublimation of the sexual energy.
If the subtle channels of the body are 'blocked', the energies awakened through lovemaking will remain at the inferior levels, with immediate consequences such as: absent-mindedness, confusion, and lethargy.
Moreover, the Taoist and Tantric teachings say that only the healthy semen should be transmuted and the resulted energy sublimated. A man following a healthy lifestyle and a healthy diet (without meat, tobacco, coffee, and alcohol) produces this sperm.
A man full of vitality, whose sexual impulses are healthy and strong, and who does not make love, may reach the point in which the sexual tension is so intense, that he has to pay a great deal of effort in order to sublimate his sexual energy.
However, it is known that it is difficult for a young man to completely sublimate his sexual energy, through the practice of continence.
In ancient times, men would marry at an early age, and they knew the art of lovemaking with sexual continence and transfiguration even from puberty.
The physiological symptoms usually associated with puberty (such as furuncles, acne, etc.) are indications of a huge sexual potential energy.
The alchemic view on sexuality presents the vital 'mercurial' energy (semen) as manifesting in the case of young abstinent men as a 'sulphurous' substance eliminated through the skin.
For those persons prepared to practice Hatha Yoga techniques, the lovemaking with transfiguration and continence is highly recommended so that they may reach a state of profound happiness and inner freedom.
A man who practices Hatha Yoga techniques, even if he does not make love to a woman, will not feel the need to masturbate and ejaculate.
The healthy semen contains nutritious vital principles, final elements, amino acids, and vitamins, which are in a structural purified form. Therefore, the semen must not be eliminated, as it is the very essence of life, and it contains the spiritual and physiological elements of that particular man.
Oriental teachings state that masturbation at women who do not end by an explosive orgasm is utterly different from masturbation by men who end up having an orgasm with ejaculation.
This difference lies in the effects each way of self-pleasing has on the person practicing it.
The fundamental difference lies in the fact that the woman possesses an almost infinite/unlimited quantity of Yin (-) essence, as compared to the man's Yang (+) essence contained in the semen.
A woman's organism, after masturbating and not ending up with an explosive orgasm, is refreshed, and the vital elements of its organism are regained and balanced after a month's cycle.
Therefore, a woman who is vital and sensuous gains in vitality and subtle 'nourishment' through her own being, through her inner harmony that is in tune with the lunar energies.
The woman embodies the exalted senses, and therefore narcissism comes natural to a woman.
Self-pleasuring, in a woman's case, without yielding to the explosive orgasm, and discharge of vital fluids, leads to the increase of her Yin essence and helps her gain a better control over her sexual reflexes, which in its turn, will lead to her being able to have prolonged, multiple orgasms while making love with continence .
A woman has at her disposal a series of effective methods for self-pleasuring, without her explosive orgasm and losing her sexual energy. For instance, there are simple rotational movements stimulating the clitoris.
Some women may orgasm by the tender touch of some parts of their bodies, such as the breasts and the YONI . For a woman, her own deep, rhythmical breath or her erotic fantasy may be sufficient for orgasm.
After the biological transmutation of her sexual energy (the Yin essence of a woman has been awakened in her), this energy has to be sublimated in a harmonious manner.
A woman's arousal requires more time, but once aroused she is able to experience several successive orgasms, without the discharge of her sexual energy.
In such moments, the mental attitude is the most important aspect of the phenomenon. Such women who experience multiple orgasms experience also 'waves of beatitude', which make her mind able to embrace the infinite.
A vital and sensual woman reaches states of ecstasy through lovemaking with continence more easily than a man does.
In the following, you will find a graphic illustration of the multiple orgasm of a woman practicing continence, as compared to the process that takes place in the case of a usual orgasm of a man.
The following diagram illustrates the stages leading to an ejaculatory orgasm of a man. In an initial phase of foreplay, the level of excitement grows suddenly, followed by a plateau phase, and then the peak. Ejaculation comes right after orgasm.
The following diagram illustrates the stages leading to a non-ejaculatory orgasm of a woman. The excitement grows constantly until it reaches a peak, and then it generates a series of intense, pleasant sensations, like a waterfall, corresponding to multiple orgasms, without the discharge of the sexual energy.
Self-pleasuring (in a woman's case) does not necessarily imply that she must introduce inside her vagina different objects in the shape of a lingam .
Indian ancient treaties recommend the use of certain natural objects (such as some fruits and vegetables) instead of artificial substitutes.
In one of these treaties, we find a reference to a plant, which immersed in hot water increases in volume and, when introduced inside the Yoni, it offers a very pleasant feeling of freshness and finesse.
In ancient China and Japan there were created a series of instruments especially for the purpose of female satisfaction.
The huge importance of the mental attitude in the case of masturbation speaks for itself. Owing to the processes of transmutation and sublimation of the sexual energy into other forms of energy, the exploration of one's own body (without the discharge of the erotic energy) should be performed in the absence of guilt.
It is important to note that the sexual energy has to be sublimated, and the goal of this practice is not the mere sensuous pleasure. Consecrate unconditionally the orgasmic waves of pleasure to the awakening of the divine aspects in your being.
An important element in the case of a woman pleasing herself is fantasy. Pervert fantasies (owing to the processes of resonance they entail) may have harmful effects on the psychic and mind of a woman.
On the contrary, an intelligent woman should cultivate creative, beneficial, positive fantasy (associated usually with non-ejaculatory orgasm) as it helps her resonate with beneficial energies from the Macrocosm . Thus, the woman may imagine she is making love to her ideal lover.
In ancient China and Japan, there were traditional objects symbolizing the husband's LINGAM . They are made from turtle shell, animal corn, or simply wood; the husband's name is usually carved in the object, most often quite artistically.
Such objects are carefully preserved in a special box. The wife uses this object (named HARIKATA) to masturbate herself, with sexual continence , or to make love to her husband's other lovers, when he was away for a longer while.
The wives would use the special object in order to get sexual satisfaction, and the first wife usually took on the role of the man. The object was used as a substitute for the concrete presence of the husband. This was a normal practice in those times.
However, the interesting fact is that the object was usually 'charged' with subtle, psychic energy through meditation, invocation of the highest aspects to be revealed through erotic experiences and consecration of the energy to God. Thus, this object would symbolize the Shiva -Lingam, the one who bestows infinite ecstasy and total transcendence to his devotees.
Thus, two (or more) women may recourse to the act of lovemaking in order to awaken and strengthen their vital essence. Such erotic games harmoniously awaken and stimulate the sexuality of each woman participating, on the condition that their mental attitude towards lovemaking is "nourishing", not "vampirical".
In the case in which the harmonious flow of energy and the exchange of Yin essence between vital, sensuous women occurs (keep in mind that we refer to lovemaking without ejaculation or discharge of sexual energy), each of them will shortly afterwards notice a significant increase of their sensuality, and of their potential sexual energy, as well as accentuated feminine qualities.
As a direct consequence of such erotic practice, the women engaged in the caress, massage and lovemaking to another woman would become more generous, more altruistic, and more compassionate.
More over, it is a fact of common knowledge that women have a natural tendency toward sharing a special intimacy, of sharing their fantasies, idea, experience, and feelings. This does not happen often with men.
Another important aspect is that all these erotic displays between women should be based on love. Taoist writings promote the idea that when women share their secrets (in an affectionate and generous manner), "their face becomes clear, shining like the Full Moon, and their eyes are much brighter."
"When a vigorous and virile man is intensely stimulated by the magnetic presence of a woman's specific vital force, his jade stem becomes hard and is impelled to act.
When the vital and sensuous woman is intensely stimulated through the vital force of a man, then the magic elixir of her Secret Cavity begins to flow.
These are the natural sensations of arousal generated by the natural qualities of the subtle forces masculine and feminine from the Macrocosm , which manifest differently through each man or woman. Such spontaneous sensations cannot be imitated or obtained through human will alone.
The third possibility we were to discuss in this article is the heterosexual context in which the two lovers caress each other's genitalia without reaching the orgasm with ejaculation or discharge of sexual energy.
This is not even masturbation; the main role of such caresses and kisses is to enhance the erotic pleasure experienced by the two lovers, to make it so intense, that once the proper lovemaking takes place, the lovers may easily experience even mystical states.
In such intimate frame, the so-called masturbation is usually associated with oral sex performed by both lovers. Such 'treat' will make them experience countless orgasms, without losing their sexual energy, and consequently, without having to stop, exhausted.
When the Yang essence of a man is absorbed into a woman's being, this Yang essence becomes, through transmutation , Yin essence. Likewise, the Yin essence absorbed by the man becomes Yang essence through the process of transmutation.
Mutual 'masturbation' by two heterosexual lovers, without ejaculating or discharging the sexual energy represents one of the most important and effective ways of reaching a state of harmony of the vital, psychic and mental between the two lovers.
The so-called modern Tantric works treat almost exclusively the issue of learning the methods to prolong non-ejaculatory orgasm through controlled (individual or mutual - only in a heterosexual couple) masturbation.
The idea of such practice consists in masturbating until reaching non-ejaculatory orgasm, when the lovers 'retain' the sperm or female sexual fluids.
However, it is our duty to mention the fact that the ancient tantric writings do not agree to this limited way of seeing things.
According to the aforementioned writings, the perfect control over sexual energy is obtained most easily in a heterosexual couple, and when both lovers are prepared in advance through the practice of Hatha Yoga techniques.
If the two lovers (especially the man) are not prepared yet to approach the sexual continence , it is recommended that they become abstinent for 3, 6 or even 9 months.
During this period, they will practice Hatha Yoga and they will prepare so that they become perfect masters of sexual continence.
If a man or a woman decides to become abstinent for the above-mentioned periods, the techniques of Pranayama , Hatha Yogic asana -s, and meditation will all help to overcome the difficulties arising from such enterprise, and the need to masturbate simply will not appear.
"Ejaculate only when you wish to procreate. And even then, do not let your semen go out with force, as if throwing something from high above. If you do things this way, you are but a fool, because you will disturb the five primordial bodily elements (earth, water, fire, air and ether), the subtle channels ( nadi ) through which flows the vital energy. This is the real cause of all your pain."