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Semitic religions such as Islam and Christianity consider masturbation to be a sin. What about Hinduism? Please give some authentic quotes for the answers.

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I feel this is offensive, but anyways its nature, and I don't think masturbation is an offensive act in Hinduism –  Mr. Alien Jul 2 at 9:57
It doesn't say anything about masturbation in Christianity. It talks about lust, which can usually be associated with such, but the act itself is not mentioned. If you feel it does, please direct me to the verse. –  NuclearPeon Jul 2 at 21:45
@NuclearPeon - Christianity is not limited to Bible. Matter of fact, what matters far more is what the practitioners of a religion do, not what their book preaches. Majority of Christian dogma has jack shit to do with anything said in the Bible. –  Davor Jul 3 at 7:38
If the practitioners do not practice what Jesus taught, it isn't Christianity although it may be based on its influence. They may not be 100% accurate at deciphering the subtle nuances or they may miss important points and cultural references, but I disagree that Christianity goes beyond the bible; Not only does it include very old texts such as the Torah, but it's a collection of the most accurate and verifiable texts afterwards, esp. of the apostles. The dogma is inaccurate if the authority is anything but from God. I don't mean to hijack this question, but @KiranRS I am skeptical it's a sin –  NuclearPeon Jul 3 at 8:42

3 Answers 3

up vote 15 down vote accepted

The Hindu treatise on sex Kama Sutra (4th to 6th centuries AD) does not condemn masturbation at all and moreover explains in detail the best procedure to masturbate; "Churn your instrument with a lion's pounce: sit with legs stretched out at right angles to one another, propping yourself up with two hands planted on the ground between in them, and it between your arms".

According to Hinduism, life begins at the Brahmacharya or "student" stage, in which they are directed to chastely advance themselves educationally and spiritually to prepare themselves for a life of furthering their dharma (societal, occupational, parental, etc. duties) and karma (right earthly actions); only once they reach the Grihastya or "householder" stage can they seek kama (physical pleasure) and artha (worldly achievement, material prosperity) through their vocations. Sexual pleasure is part of kama, one of the four goals of life. Source:(1,2).

So Mastrubation is not a sin in Hinduism but its only allowed in "Grihastya Jeevan".

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Masturbation is forbidden for unmarried bachelors. In 'Brihadaranyak Upanishad' it is written that the cerebral fluid, the marrow in the bones and the sperm are all made of the synthetic elements of blood. It should not be wasted by masturbation, which is normally aided by fantasy.

Source : Brihadaranyak Upanishad

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It is important for a normal healthy life as well. That upanishad doesn't state that? (I know science is off-topic here but the quote from that upanishad is describing science, so washed my hands :P) –  Awal Garg Jul 2 at 10:37
@AwalGarg Yea that sounds weird –  Mr. Alien Jul 2 at 10:39

Hinduism does not deal with social situations like Western religions do.

There are no chapters on how to deal with women, how to marry, how to divorce, how to have sex, whether to have drugs, whether to have alcohol etc etc. There are no 10 commandments.

There have been various books or literature on topics like society, class, sex etc, but that's on the side. They are again theories written by many people along the way.

Interestingly, if you see India as it is today, there is a lot of ingrained rules on how to live, marry, divorce. A kind of Hindu law. But all of those have come from centuries of learning, shaping, relearning, adapting, adopting, copying, debating, conflicting, dispelling, removing, curtailing, picking, dropping and how you like it.

As a society it slowly adopts what's best in the current context. Look at child marriage - It was prevalent 2 centuries ago. Now it is unheard of. Sati - prevalent 100 years ago. Now - unheard of. Women at work - unheard of 100 years back. 33% reservation for women in parliament - Now.

So, in a way, the religion has found a non-prescriptive way of dealing with internal change. And the core of it is is a simple idea

" Nobody is wrong. Nobody is right".

This concept is the basis of all values that came from India.

==> Debate, conflict, understand, Agree, Accept, Change and keep doing that in circles.

The one thing people outside of India may have noticed is that Indians are always fighting war of words with each other. Now thats the fundamental value that societies need to adapt, and to change.

In a short way, Masturbation was also debated in India by Vatsayana, and he was the first to say OK to it. I dont think, any conflicting ideas have come since then.

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-1 just for your first sentence, 'Hinduism does not deal with social situations'. It is the biggest culture which deals with social situations than any other cultures. As an example, just see about Shodasha Sanskara. Pls consider editing your answer if it make sense. –  A_runningMind Jul 30 at 18:02
There is a difference between a Purana, a Vedas, and other treatise. Description of societies and how the people reacted have come through all the rest of the texts. We will live in confusion as to which ones are religious texts, and which ones are parables, or interpretative or reformative theories which came along the way. But thats fine. I would say that is the essence of Hinduism anyway. –  Raghuraman.K Jul 31 at 15:14

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