Urdhvareta is a Sanskrit term derived from the words ‘Urdhva’ meaning upward and ‘Rethas’ meaning sexual fluid. Achieving full sublimation of sexual energy through Brahmacharya (chastity) takes a significant amount of time, effort, and divine grace. However, as a practitioner strives to observe chastity in thought, word, and deed, an inner process called Urdhvareta kriya (also known as Vajroli) occurs, which directs the flow of semen from downward and outward to upward and inward. This contributes to the formation of ‘Ojas’ Shakti (Divine Energy) in the brain.
It takes a very long time, with very sincere Brahmacharya in thought, word and deed coupled with God’s grace for one to achieve full sex sublimation, including the stoppage of wet dreams. However, as an aspirant climbs up the ladder of Brahmacharya to the best of his efforts by abhorring from the sexual act, ejaculation, and impure thoughts for a considerable period; An inner phenomenon called Urdhvareta kriya (process) also called by the name ‘Vajroli’, takes place in his system, due to which semen which was earlier flowing downward and being ejaculated outward now starts flowing upward and inward. This aids the formation of ‘Ojas’ Shakti (Divine Energy) in his brain. The aspirant is not yet a complete Urdhvareta, as he has not yet achieved complete sex sublimation or transmutation. Semen will still flow down if he is not vigilant against the senses (wet dreams stop in one who is a complete Urdhvareta).
When the aspirant maintains this state of Brahmacharya for a considerable period from when the ‘Vajroli kriya’ functions, passaging the flow of semen within his body (from the sex glands to the Urethra) becomes narrow and constricted. Under such circumstances, if he indulges in ejaculation of semen (even in a copious wet dream), instead of pleasure, he experiences pain. This further aids in developing distaste and dispassion towards the sex act.
This is one of the most important of changes which occurs in the body of the Brahmachari at the physiological level. Coupled with this, certain external changes take place:
- The body becomes more taut, wiry, and lithe. The tendency to accumulate bulk and fat reduces.
- The face develops a red hue, and wrinkles gradually disappear.
- The skin glows with luster and the eyes become bright. Eyesight improves.
- Overall—All organs in his body gradually return to their original state of maximum function (As they were during childhood).
From this stage onwards, the Brahmachari must be very careful in avoiding more than necessary contact with members of the opposite sex in particular and people. Further to the ‘Vajroli kriya’ taking place, he develops a magnetic personality and appears very alluring to the world, and women in particular. Any act of letting his ego get goaded resulting in pompousness, pride or arrogance will immediately lead to his downfall as his semen deserting him; for the appearance of these negative traits is invariably accompanied by blossoming of latent lust present within. The aspirant should clearly know that he has no more conquered lust than a child has learnt to deal with the world. Lust is only in a state of control. It is still present in its fullest form within him, but in a latent and dormant state. From now on, he has to be very humble before the world and God, always keeping in mind that this power he is developing is not his own but the power of God shining through him. Only humility, kindness and consideration towards fellow beings and an attitude of gratitude towards God for all that he has given will strengthen celibacy and make for further growth.