Question: What should be the course and what is the merit of sex in human development?

Sri Chinmoy: The medical world will have its view, and the religious leaders will have their views, and each individual will have his own view. But from the spiritual point of view, I can say that when one is on the verge of realisation, or when one has realised God and one remains always in transcendental Delight, sex-life does not exist. Sex and immortal Delight can never go together. Sex is physical pleasure, and there is a great difference between earthly pleasure and divine Delight. Of course, from the seeker who is learning the ABC of spirituality or who has just completed his primary course, we cannot expect total celibacy. But for one who is about to be inundated with infinite Bliss and Light, sex is just like eating clay. Children often eat clay, but when they get older, they have no desire for it.

The question arises, how can a seeker solve this problem? The answer is to solve it gradually. If you drink five cups of tea daily, then try to drink only four for a few weeks. Then make it three, and after a few weeks make it two, then gradually one. If you try to stop drinking tea overnight, it will tell on your health. The best thing is to go slowly and steadily in the process of spiritual growth. One knows how often he indulges in vital life. Gradually, he should try to curb his vital movements, because his ultimate goal is to drink Nectar, immortal Bliss. Slowly and steadily he has to march towards the Goal.

So a seeker must know where he stands. If he aims at the highest Goal, then a day will dawn when he will have to give up sex-life altogether. If he wants to be satisfied with an iota of Peace, Light and Bliss, he can enjoy the romantic life; he can smoke and he can drink. But if he wants the Highest, and he is determined never to stop in his upward journey unless and until he has reached the Highest, then in the process of his spiritual evolution there will come a time when he can determine the value of the pleasure-life and the blissful life. Then he will give up the pleasure-life altogether, because he knows that pleasure is followed by frustration, and frustration is followed by destruction. A child may eat mud and sand, but when he grows up he eats only nourishing food. In the spiritual life also, for the beginner it is permissible within limits to have a lower vital life. But there comes a time when it is not only objectionable but also unnecessary. The wiser we become, the easier it is for us to know what is necessary and what is unnecessary. A wise man will do only those things that are necessary, whereas a fool will go on and on doing all kinds of unnecessary things all his life.

Whether or not one conquers the lower vital life depends entirely on whether the individual wants the Highest. If he wants the Highest, then a day will come when he will have to go far beyond the meshes of ignorance into the realm of Light and Delight. If he wants to be satisfied with his lower vital life, and at the same time meditate for five or ten minutes a day, then I wish to say that for him the lower vital life is permissible. His goal is not the ultimate Goal. But a sincerely aspiring seeker will one day give up the life of desire. He knows that desire is binding him all the time. That is why he has launched onto the path of aspiration, where he will get the sense of constant freedom. The higher he goes, the clearer becomes his vision that the life of pleasure and the life of Bliss can never go together. Each individual will deal with his own vital life according to his aspiration. Each individual will see how far he wants to go, and how much he has developed in his inner life. On the strength of his own inner development he can and will solve this problem.