Celibacy/Abstinence/Vitality and Age


Hello, you say that brahmacharya gives oneself vitality even in old age. But its not always the case. Ramana Maharshi suffered many illness in his 60ths. There was an italian monk who supposedly had superpowers too called Padre Pio in late 1960 and suffered many health problems and didnt live long. Francis of Assisi didnt live 50 years old. In my opinion brahmacharya helps some people health but not others. Why those people suffer athritis and all kind of problems, when brahmacharya is supposed to give oneself many health benefice? ANd many vulgar person reach 90-100 years old.

1. Just as the arrow shot by a hunter will hit its target, after release, even if the hunter decides otherwise and repents for his action, illnesses & diseases which are a part of 'Prarabdha karma' (that karma which is destined to be worked out by the body & mind in this existence, due to previous acts) cannot be sidestepped.

Even in the case of realized souls, the same laws of karma hold good. None are above the laws of karma. Realized souls prevent the formation of future unwanted karma, after losing the sense of doership, further to attainment of 'Gnyana' (knowledge of the absolute). Such a being does not commit any mistake. However, the karma accrued before the attainment of such Gnyana (be it pleasant or unpleasant) cannot be sidestepped. It has to be worked out. If there are past acts which necessitate suffering of the body through a particular illness or disease, then the same comes to fruit at the destined time. Also, this being their final existence on the earthly plane, such beings have to settle all dues and clear their karmic account once and for all, before final release. The same does not apply to the common man who has innumerable future existences pending.

2. When a man has a large sum of money, it appears as though any amount of expenditure does not lead to poverty. However, this is not the case in reality. With time, further to continuous expenditure, even the richest man eventually becomes a pauper. The same analogy holds good as regards those who have earned some merit, that supports health, in previous existences, despite an apparent lack of Brahmacharya.

Brahmacharya promotes health, happiness and well being, while lack of it does the opposite. In case of those who live to a ripe old age despite lack of Brahmacharya, it is to be known that their past karma is such that a life or two of health is supported. Once this past, supporting merit has been exhausted, such people find themselves in an existence devoid of all health and happiness and have to also face the results of their recent actions.

ॐ तत् सत्
(That Supreme being is the absolute truth)  


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts




Questions concerning the practice of 'Brahmacharya' to know the self, & the means required are dealt with here.


The term 'Yoga' is a derivative of the Samskruth verb 'Yuj' which refers to union. 'Yoga', also called 'Brahma vidy‚' is the eternal dissolution of the individual 'Aham' (Ego) into the Atman (self) for 'Mukti' (liberation). Mere indulgence in '¬sana' or physical postures is not Yoga. ¬sana is only one limb or 'Anga' of Yoga. The eight limbs viz. Yama, Niyama, ¬sana, Pr‚n‚y‚ma, Praty‚h‚ra, Dh‚rana, Dhy‚na and Sam‚dhi are the means to Yoga. Brahmacharya or spiritually based continence is one of the important components of 'Yama'. 'Brahmacharya':- "Brahmani charyathey ithi" - "To surrender one's Ego and go with the will of the Almighty."


©2017 About.com. All rights reserved.