In today’s world, sexual energy is often viewed as a taboo topic. However, in ancient India, sexual energy was not only acknowledged but also utilized as a means of spiritual growth. Yogis and spiritual seekers practiced Brahmacharya, which refers to the practice of celibacy or sexual restraint, as a way of transmuting sexual energy into spiritual energy. Along with this practice, they also used Pranayama, a breathing exercise, to control and direct the flow of vital energy within the body.
Pranayama is an ancient yogic practice that involves controlling the breath in a specific way to achieve certain effects on the body and mind. Prana means vital energy or life force, and yama means control. Therefore, Pranayama means control of vital energy through breathing exercises. It is a powerful tool that helps to balance the body, mind, and emotions.
The regular and correct practice of Pranayama helps to improve the overall health and well-being of the individual. The toxins in the body are eliminated, and the mind becomes calm and serene. With regular practice, the individual develops focus, concentration, and one-pointedness. The mind becomes free from uncontrollable desires, and the person gains control over their sexual energy.
Sublimation of sexual energy refers to the transmutation of sexual energy into spiritual energy. It involves redirecting the energy that would normally be expended during sexual activity towards spiritual pursuits. This is achieved through the practice of Brahmacharya, which involves celibacy or sexual restraint. When sexual energy is not wasted, it is redirected towards spiritual growth, resulting in increased vitality, clarity, and spiritual insight.
By the regular and correct practice of Pranayama, the body and face become lustrous and toxins in the body get thrown out. After a few months of regular practice, the mind becomes very calm and serene and excellent health and well-being manifest within the person along with the development of immunity towards diseases. The mind gets free from uncontrollable desires and gains steadiness and one pointedness, along with focus and concentration. The man gains control over his semen and will slowly get free from wet dreams to eventually attain unbroken celibacy.
Life of the spiritual celibate might look drab and bland to the sensual man, but he will eventually realize one day that the celibate is in fact actually pursuing the short-cut to the land of eternal bliss, while he himself wasted time, energy and might in taking the attractive but dead-end road to misery. And then, he has to travel all the way back to the crossroads once again and take the only true path to the land of bliss—the path of purity, godliness and virtue.
God has given man some great weapons to fight temptations. They are intelligence, discrimination and contemplation. Used rightly, they tell us what is right and what is wrong. All that is required once we know this is an iron determination to implement the suggestion given by the soul through the above instruments. The soul is higher than all other faculties. Each one of us can hear the voice of the soul if we set time aside to sit quietly, contemplate, and concentrate on divinity. This is what meditation is all about. The tool used to calm the mind and evacuate it of its modifications is ‘Pranayama’ or control of the vital energy achieved through regulated breathing. Practice these two after learning them from a knowledgeable source. Constant efforts ultimately bear fruit.
Sublimation of sexual energy does not mean making the semen flow from the testicles towards the brain, a fact which has confused many people. It means the sublimation of a bio- electric energy which activates the semen. There is no such duct or vein through which semen can flow upwards in that manner. Hence, while there is no question of the semen going upwards, losing semen is caused by the downward flow of this bio-electric energy.
Therefore, when a man looks at a woman clad in provocative clothes, or visualizes the body of a woman, this bio-electric energy flows downwards to the Moolaadhaara Chakra and activates the sexual center, causing the ejaculation of semen. The person ends up wasting his sexual energy. Yogis and Tantriks were well aware of this subtle reality. General physicians and biologists do not comprehend it, and hence even with their sophisticated medical equipment they cannot cure several serious diseases whereas we have seen and heard of so many cases wherein yogis have cured diseases merely by casting a glance, or through their benign blessings.
While achieving complete sublimation may not be feasible for everyone, there are simple techniques you can learn and practice to conserve your vital energy and improve your health. Basic Pranayama exercises such as Kapalbhati, Anulom vilom, Mula bandha, Uddiyâna bandha, Jâlandhara bandha, Yogic breaths (fast, medium, and slow breathing), Vacuum, and the great draw Pranayama can help you achieve this.
You can easily find descriptions of how to perform these exercises online, either in books or on YouTube. I recommend watching a video titled “PRANAYAMA” by Captain Sinbad to learn how to perform these exercises correctly.
Below are descriptions of some basic and advanced methods of Pranayama.
1. Kapalbhati Pranayama:
One of the most basic Pranayama exercises is Kapalbhati Pranayama, which involves forceful exhalation by contracting the abdominal muscles.
Here’s how to perform it:
- Sit comfortably in any meditative posture with your eyes closed and your body relaxed.
- Inhale deeply through both nostrils, expanding your chest.
- Exhale forcefully by contracting your abdominal muscles, then relax.
- Continue forceful exhalation and passive inhalation.
- Complete 30 rapid breaths, then take a deep breath and exhale slowly.
- This is one round of Kapalbhati.
- Each round should be followed by deep breathing.
- Repeat two more rounds.
Beginners should practice up to three rounds of 20 breaths each, gradually increasing the count and rounds over time. Kapalbhati is a ‘shat’ kriya technique that cleanses your body by flushing out toxic air, bringing various mental and physical benefits. It is part of the Eight Limbs of Yoga as compiled in Yoga Sutras by Sage Patanjali. Practicing Kapalbhati regularly keeps you healthy in mind, body, and spirit.
2. Anulom vilom Pranayama:
Anulom Vilom is a core breathing exercise in yoga, also known as Alternate Nostril Breathing. It involves conscious breath regulation by inhaling through one nostril while keeping the other closed, holding the breath for a short while, and then exhaling out through the other nostril. This process is then repeated with the other nostril.
Here’s how to perform Anulom Vilom Pranayama:
- Close your eyes and sit comfortably.
- Rest your hands on your knees.
- Close the right nostril with your right thumb.
- Inhale slowly through the left nostril, filling your lungs with air.
- Remove your thumb from your right nostril and exhale.
- Next, use your middle finger to close your left nostril, then inhale through your right nostril, and remove your thumb from your right nostril. Exhale.
- Repeat this process for 5 minutes.
- Focus on your breathing and remain concentrated.
For step-by-step guidance and benefits of Anulom Vilom Pranayama, you can watch the video “Anulom Vilom Pranayama (Alternate Nostril Breathing) How to Do Step by Step for Beginners & Benefits” by Siddhi Yoga International on YouTube.
As for the remaining Pranayama exercises such as Mula bandha, Uddiyâna bandha, Jâlandhara bandha, Yogic breaths (fast, medium, and slow breathing), Vacuum, and the great draw Pranayama, you can search for detailed instructions on YouTube or Google.
Advanced methods of performing Pranayama:
For those interested in Pranayama and the benefits it offers, including the assurance of success in unbroken Brahmacharya (Semen Retention), I would like to provide a brief description of how to perform basic Pranayama, as well as some advanced methods.
First, the aspirant should wake up at Brahma muhurtha (3AM—5:30PM), well before sunrise. After bathing, take a moment to pray for success in the path of Brahmacharya. Then, sit in either Padmasana or Vajrayana and perform the three Bandhas (Mula bandha, Uddiyana bandha, and Jalandhara bandha). For descriptions on how to perform these Bandhas, they can be easily found through a Google search.
Next, practice Nadi Shodhana. Sit in any of the aforementioned asanas and close the right nostril with your right thumb. Exhale slowly and completely from the left nostril. Next, with the right nostril still closed, inhale slowly, deeply, and completely from the left nostril until your lungs are full. Once your lungs are full, immediately close the left nostril with your ring and little fingers of your right hand, and slowly exhale from your right nostril. Now repeat the process with the right nostril, slowly inhaling and exhaling from the left nostril. This process should be repeated for five full minutes, alternating airflow between the left and right nostrils, and is called ‘Nadi Shodhana’. After three months of regular practice, it purifies the Nadis (astral channels) within the body. This practice should be performed once in the morning before sunrise and once in the evening at sunset, before the practice of Pranayama.
For more advanced Pranayama exercises, such as the Vacuum and the Great Draw Pranayama, one can search for videos or descriptions online.
After performing the three bandhas and Nadi Shodhana, the body is prepared for Pranayama, which is explained below.
To begin, drink a glass of water and assume any of the asanas mentioned above. Close your right nostril with your thumb and exhale slowly and completely from your left nostril. Now, with your right nostril still closed, inhale slowly, deeply, and completely from the left nostril until your lungs are full. Hold the breath, swallow twice, remove your hand, and retain the held breath for 16 counts (seconds). Close your left nostril with the ring and little fingers of your right hand and exhale slowly from the right nostril. Remember to inhale and exhale very slowly and smoothly without jerks.
Next, with your left nostril still closed with your right hand, inhale slowly, deeply, and completely from the right nostril until your lungs are full. Hold the breath, swallow twice, remove your hand, and retain the breath for 16 counts (seconds) in your lungs. Close your right nostril with your thumb and slowly exhale the breath from the left nostril. Remember to inhale and exhale very slowly and smoothly without jerks. This completes ONE Pranayama.
If you are new to Pranayama, perform SIX rounds of Pranayama with a 16-second retention in the morning before sunrise and SIX rounds in the evening at sunset. After 40 days of practice, you can increase the counts to 24 seconds. The act of drawing up the air, retaining the air, and exhaling the air must be slow, deep, smooth, and without jerks. If you find it difficult to perform this process for 24 seconds after 40 days, do not force yourself, but instead return to the practice of 16-second retention for as much time as is necessary to make you fit for the 24-second process.
Note that you should never force yourself to achieve longer durations in a hurry. Only after you can perform the 16-second Pranayama SIX times with ease, twice a day, after 40 days (or however many months necessary) based on your individual ability should you venture for the 24-second breath retention of SIX Pranayamas. After achieving 24 seconds of breath retention after a few months, you can increase this duration to 32 seconds and practice that for forty days. Once you are comfortable with 32 seconds of breath retention, you can increase the retention time to 40 seconds, then to 48 seconds, and so on. This time duration should be increased gradually up to the point of comfort but never beyond one’s ability.
After finishing the practice of Pranayama, meditate on God for some time, free of all other thoughts and desires.
If you want to learn more about Pranayama and other methods of performing it, I recommend reading “The Science of Pranayama” by Swami Sivananda for complete details.
By practicing this exercise daily for 30 days, the individual can learn to control the flow of vital energy within the body. As they become more proficient, they can direct this energy towards spiritual pursuits, resulting in increased vitality, clarity, and spiritual insight.
It is important to note that sublimation of sexual energy does not involve making the semen flow from the testicles towards the brain, as some people believe. Rather, it involves the transmutation of a bio-electric energy that activates the semen. Therefore, looking at provocative images or visualizing the body of a person can cause this bio-electric energy to flow downwards towards the Moolaadhaara Chakra, activating the sexual center and causing the ejaculation of semen. This wastes sexual energy and hinders spiritual growth.
In conclusion, the practice of Pranayama and Brahmacharya are powerful tools for transmuting sexual energy into spiritual energy. By learning to control and direct the flow of vital energy within the body through Pranayama and practicing Brahmacharya, individuals can achieve increased vitality, clarity, and spiritual insight. So, start the 30-day Pranayama exercise today and take a step towards your spiritual growth!
#1. It’s recommended to rub the sweat that comes out of the body during the process of Pranayama back into the body after each Pranayama.
Sweating is a natural bodily function that can occur during physical activities, including Pranayama practice. During Pranayama, the body may generate heat, leading to sweating. The sweat that comes out of the body during the process of Pranayama is considered to be vital essence, containing vital minerals and salts, which should not be wasted.
Therefore, it is highly recommended to rub the sweat back into the body after each Pranayama. This is known as Swedan, which is a process of applying heat to the body, allowing it to release toxins through sweating. When the sweat is rubbed back into the body, the body can reabsorb these vital minerals and salts, keeping them within the body.
Rubbing the sweat back into the body also helps to maintain the body’s energy and prana levels, which can be depleted during the practice of Pranayama. By rubbing the sweat back into the body, the energy that was expended during Pranayama can be conserved and stored back into the body, promoting optimal physical and mental health.
In addition, it’s important to note that the sweat should be rubbed back into the body gently and not with excessive force, to avoid any discomfort or irritation to the skin. Taking a shower or bath immediately after the Pranayama practice should be avoided, as it can wash away the vital minerals and salts contained in the sweat.
#2. It’s important to use a yoga mat or small carpet dedicated solely to yoga practice.
#3. After finishing Pranayama and meditation, it’s important to have a small snack such as a glass of milk and a fruit or two to avoid having an empty stomach.
#4. It’s advised that people who practice Yoga avoid caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, and foods high in salt and spices.