4

Kandarpa is a person who only uses his sexual power to beget good children from his dharmapatni or wife.

So for being a kandarpa, a person can only have sexual contact with his wife for having children. Therefore any type of sexual activity without this holy purpose is cause of attachment. Some even consider non-kardarpa bhoga as sin.

So if being kandarpa is ideal and not sinful then, does this mean using contraceptive methods specifically condoms and birth control pills are sins because we waste our seed without a reason (i.e., being non-kandarpa)?


EDIT

  • What do Dharma Shastras say about Vasectomy?
  • Is Vasectomy considered a contraception and thus a sin?
  • 4
    I think there is no Sin in Hinduism. As said by you, non-kardarpa bhoga is useless and as it just deprives seed and thereby Ojas, So, some people have just made it as Sin to make people stay away from it. – The Destroyer Jul 21 '16 at 4:14
  • 2
    @TheDestroyer What we people think doesn't matter, the decisive authority are dharma Shastras, thanks for your comment, but if you can please quote some dharma shastra(like manu smriti) on this topic. – Yogi Jul 21 '16 at 6:49
  • 2
    @Yogi when Sages reach High level of meditation then Indra sends Apsaras... In many cases they fell in prey of them... and become fond of Bhoga Vilasa... their Tapa gets incomplete but I don't know any Puranas which says that they incurred sin... so, I agree with The Destroyer... this deteriorates their Ojas power but they do not bear Sin... as the fundamental siddhanta of Dharma says "Atmanan Pratikulani Paresham Na Samacharet"... as noone is adversely affected... as it is in mutual relationship... so I think there is no sin... – Tejaswee Jul 21 '16 at 12:22
  • @Tezz Well again I would say dharma shastras are far more superior than our thinking they are commandments of Supreme Bramhan Shriman Narayana. So if they say 'it is a sin' no matter what me, tezz , destroyer, or any x,y,z person thinks, there would be a sin related to this act. – Yogi Jul 21 '16 at 12:31
  • 1
    Related: What is the punishment for consensual sex in Hinduism?. @TheDestroyer, agreed. Relating "sex" with "sin" is more of a cultural phenomena in last few centuries. – iammilind Jul 26 '16 at 11:57
4

One thing is very clear that a man should mate with his wife only. As far as contraceptive methods are considered, I cannot say about women, but as far as men are considered, though a contraception is used, man's semen is either in his body or it will be outside the body. Release of semen should serve purpose and that too it is begetting child with wife only. Also mating with wife has many rules prescribed.

  1. Chapter 5 of Uma Samhita of Siva Purana says

    yatheṣṭa ceṣṭā niśśaṃkāssaṃtiṣṭhaṃti ramaṃti ca । .... (Sloka 12)

    etāni khalu sarvāṇi karmāṇi muni sattama । sumahatpātakānyāhuśśivaniṃdā samāni ca॥ (Sloka 22)

    A person who without any hesitation behaves, ramaṃti meaning intercourse ..... the list goes on and then etāni khalu sarvāṇi karmāṇi, all these deeds sumahatpātakānyāhuśśivaniṃdā samāni ca are considered great sins equal to abuse of Siva.

  2. The following are sins on a par with that of defiling teacher’s bed—the non-disposal of marriageable daughters by giving them in marriage to deserving husbands, having sexual intercourse with the wives of sons and friends or with the sisters, raping virgins; cohabitation with an intoxicated woman or a woman of one’s own caste. (Slokas 38-40)

  3. Chapter 6 of Uma Samhita of Siva Purana says

    malice towards good men, illicit approach to another man’s wife, defiling the virgins of good men, carrying on affairs with women through fraudulent means, sexual intercourse during new moon and full moon days during day time, or in the vaginal passages of animals, or through other passages, emits semen or intercourse in water, or cohabits with a woman in her monthly course, undergo agony due to another man’s wife are all sins.

  4. Releasing semen on earth also is considered a sin. The Devi Bhagavatam's Chapter 10 of Ninth Skandam says

    kāmī bhūmau ca rahasi vīryatyāgaṃ karoti yaḥ । bhūmireṇu pramāṇaṃ ca varṣaṃ tiṣṭhati raurave ॥

    If anybody, out of his amorous passion casts his semen privately on the suface of the ground, he will have to suffer the torments of Raurava hell for as many years as are the numbers of dust particles on that area.

If we think properly, earth is Vishnu Kaanta, mother to us. So the semen released is placed on mother which is a terrible sin even to speak or write or think.

  1. Bhagavatam says in Chapter 26 of Fifth Skanda

    yas tv iha vai savarṇāṁ bhāryāṁ dvijo retaḥ pāyayati kāma-mohitas taṁ pāpa-kṛtam amutra retaḥ-kulyāyāṁ pātayitvā retaḥ sampāyayanti.

    If a foolish member of the twice-born classes [brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya and vaiśya] forces his wife to drink his semen out of a lusty desire to keep her under control, he is put after death into the hell known as Lālābhakṣa. There he is thrown into a flowing river of semen, which he is forced to drink.

So whether one uses or doesn't use contraception, release of semen voluntarily or involuntarily is considered a big sin. The only kshetra to place one's veeryam is his wife's womb.

Every Purana has chapters on Sadaachara, Description of Hells. Some puranas has special chapters dedicated to aspects of Earth, water, doing intercourse etc. Go through them thoroughly. Listing out the points in them from all puranas tells us that marriage, intercourse, sleep, food everything in Sanatana Dharma is linked to Dharma always. Artha and Kaama without Dharma does not bring us any good.

Note: Do not analyse the births of mahatmas like Vasishta, Rishyasringa, Vyasa etc.

  • 1
    What is meaning of word the Vishnu Kaanta? – The Destroyer Jul 21 '16 at 13:16
  • @TheDestroyer Vishnu Kaanta means Vishnu's Kaanta meaning the wife of Vishnu – Student Jul 21 '16 at 13:18
  • thanks for a comprehensive answer, so you agree that using contraceptive is a sin please make it clear? and there is no question of mating parastri. The main point is weather using contraceptive and having intercourse for pleasure other than begetting child is a sin or not, and what do dharmashastras say about that. – Yogi Jul 21 '16 at 13:29
  • @Yogi The answer is clear, but I will make an explicit statement. Contraception does not bring you any good, because even then the semen has to go to earth or water which is a sin. That is why I made the statement "the only kshetra to place one's semen is his wife's womb" – Student Jul 21 '16 at 13:36
  • 2
    @Student, since pregnancy/life begins at conception (garbhadana), and since one should not cohabit with pregnant wife, and since cohabitation should only be done for sake of procreation, that means husband and wife must wait for 2 months between each cohabitation to ensure wife did not become pregnant from previous time. And since most people only want 2 kids, that means a husband & wife would only join in cohabitation twice or thrice during their married life. – ram Jul 24 '16 at 6:09
1

Opinion #1 (Sri Rama Ramanuja Achari)

From The Hindu Sacrament Of Marriage (srimatham.com):

CONJUGAL RIGHTS

According to Hindu Law only women have conjugal rights known as the Ritu. The Ritu which means “season” are the 12 nights after the commencement of the menstrual cycle, excluding the first 3 or 4.

It is laid down in many sacred texts that it is the duty of the husband to have sex with his wife during this period. This is known as Ritu-gamana. After the menstrual blood has ceased to flow, the woman is advised to purify herself by bathing and wearing clean clothes she should approach her husband and say:— ṛtum dehi — give me my conjugal rights — the husband has no right to refuse such a request. (Mbh 13:162.41).

In fact a refusal to oblige is considered a heinous sin leading to hell! (Parasara 4:12).

In fact it is taught that having sex in the Ritu is one of the virtues that lead to heaven.
(Mbh. 8:144.13-14)

The Sacred Law goes even further and declares that the married couple who only have sex during the Ritu are to be considered as celibate. (Mbh. 12:221.11)

This is an interesting law for those who insist on sex only for procreation.

Immediately after menstruation it is almost impossible to fall pregnant, the all knowing sages and law-givers must have known this before they formulated such a law and this would support the argument that the Dharma Shastra does sanction having sex for pleasure alone.

From the above, I infer that using contraceptives like condoms and birth control pills are also sanctioned. Even vasectomy is allowed, not a sin. Remember that previously none of the birth control techniques were available hence the above laws existed to prevent unexpected pregnancies.


Opinion #2 (Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami)

From hinduismtoday.com:

What Is the Hindu View of Sexuality?

The purpose of sexual union is to express and foster love's beautiful intimacy and to draw husband and wife together for procreation. While offering community guidance, Hinduism does not legislate sexual matters. Aum.

Sexual intercourse is a natural reproductive function, a part of the instinctive nature, and its pleasures draw man and woman together that a child may be conceived. It also serves through its intimacy to express and nurture love. It is love which endows sexual intercourse with its higher qualities, transforming it from an animal function to a human fulfillment. Intensely personal matters of sex as they affect the family or individual are not legislated, but left to the judgment of those involved, subject to community laws and customs.

Hinduism neither condones nor condemns birth control, sterilization, masturbation, homosexuality, petting, polygamy or pornography. It does not exclude or draw harsh conclusions against any part of human nature, though scripture prohibits adultery and forbids abortion except to save a mother's life. Advice in such matters should be sought from parents, elders and spiritual leaders. The only rigid rule is wisdom, guided by tradition and virtue. The Vedas beseech, "May all the divine powers together with the waters join our two hearts in one! May the Messenger, the Creator and holy Obedience unite us." Aum Namah Sivaya.


Opinion #3 (Swami Chandrasekharendra Saraswati)

From the book, Hindu Dharma: The Universal Way of Life or kamakoti.org:

The householder's life is not to be taken to mean merely the enjoyment of sensual pleasure along with the carrying out of duties that mean good to the world. The fact is that the sastras have formulated this stage of life in such a way as to make kama itself instinct with dharma. "Dharma" means essentially bringing everything within certain limits, under a certain discipline and decorum. Kama must be inspired by dharma, that is one must bridle one's passions in one's conjugal life, so that, step by step, the carnal urge will lose its keenness and eventually one will gain mellowness to graduate to sannyasa. That stage, though, comes later. But at first, even now, in the householder's stage of life, the passions have to be curbed, little by little, but not forcibly. In the gurukula the celibate-student is brought under strict discipline. That saves him from being swept away by animal passion.

Though we talk of animal passion, we must note that animals mate only during a particular season. They have the sexual urge only when the female of the species is ready for pregnancy. Man is baser in such matters. Brahmacarya helps to control the carnal urge as it first shows up. Then, in the householder's life, since kama is made subservient to dharma, the passions are kept under check.

What is the sastric method to control the carnal urge?

From the day of a women's period there should be no intercourse for four days. Then it is permitted for twelve days. Again there should be no intercourse until the women has her next period. Even during the twelve days mentioned above the couple should not meet during the new moon, on days conjoined by certain asterisms, etc., If such rules are followed the couple will remain healthy mentally as well as physically.

I take it from above, all contraceptive methods including vasectomy are allowed, as long as you follow the above rules. Just remember that ultimately you have to give up your sex life and graduate to sannyasa.


Opinion #4 (Swami Satchidananda)

From hinduismtoday.com, although it's a comment on abortion:

Q: How do you perceive the abortion issue and what practical advice do you give to those seeking your help on this mater?

A: This often comes up. Under most circumstances the abortion should not be done. Only when the mother's life is in danger - not for any other reason. Not for any social reason such as, "How can we take care of this boy?" All those reasons are not good. But there is an old Tamil saying: "Even the cow, if it comes to kill you, must be killed." But that is the only time. Some say, "Oh, after six months the life is there, after six weeks the life is there." No, even the sperm has life. So, at no point is it not living matter. You are not destroying the soul but you are destroying the body of the soul. So we don't want to do that.

I infer from above that, you are not allowed to waste or kill your sperm by any means. Sperm has life. Period.


In one of the comments above, you said:

Well again I would say dharma shastras are far more superior than our thinking. They are commandments of Supreme Bramhan Shriman Narayana. So if they say 'it is a sin' no matter what me, tezz, destroyer, or any xyz person thinks, there would be a sin related to this act.

– Yogi Jul 21 at 12:31

Who is they? "They" means a lot of smritis as I explained in this answer. How do you know which one was authorized by Shriman Narayana in which part of the country or world?

Ultimately, it comes down to 1) where you physically live (local laws) 2) whom you consider your guru and 3) who's opinion you value the most. I think we should just blindly follow one rulebook (e.g., one you've inherited from your parents) and stop constantly questioning whether your guru or parents are teaching you the most accurate and most shastric way of living.

No offense to anyone nor to undermine our shastras, but there's an old Telugu saying that a couple who followed every rule in the shastras finally gave birth to a dog!


In another comment you said:

Vaishnavism or Sri Vaishnavism and Pancharatra Agamas say it is sin to do the act for purpose of enjoyment. Well technically the egg should be released before the expiration so just the act does not result in child birth. Pancharatra Agamas say that careful analysis of astrology and time constraints should be done before doing the act. it makes clear statement that the act if done without such speculation and aim then it is a sin resulting in anartha. – Yogi Jul 21 at 13:53

Ok, well, if you are follower of Pancharatra Agamas, then, those rules only apply to you. Not for everyone. If you already know the answer to your question, maybe you should post one instead of waiting for one that 'fits' with your thinking.

  • 2
    Good answer. Especially last 2 para-s cover a common sentiment, often observed not only here but across the societies. When we see multiple opinions from recognized people and learn to respect them irrespective of accepting, we become learned. See this similar post on meta: Why are we so sure about everything while commenting or answering?. – iammilind Nov 24 '16 at 8:08
  • Great Answer. i upvoted.Thanks for enriching – user17294 Feb 26 at 4:24
  • The Chinese keep the semen as treasure beholding seamen one gets other powers like astama sidhi – Prasanna R Feb 26 at 5:35
0

"Kandarpa is a person who only uses his sexual power to beget good children from his Dharma patni or wife."

Correct. The link in question refers below:

BG 10.28 — Among weapons I am the thunderbolt; among cows I am kamadhenu. I am Kandarpa - the procreator, and among serpents I am Vasuki.

BTW, according to GAndharva tradition, having sex is a form of marriage in certain situations. We can equate it to present form of "live-in relationship".


"So for being a kandarpa a person can only have sexual contact with his wife for having children."

Yes, but no strictness of "wife", though it's DhArmik. In MahAbhArata, VyAsa had Niyoga with 3 women and Kunti had Niyoga with 3 men (spiritual forms). It's never seen as a sin. Reference for more details.

This is 1 of the few absolute forms, where there is no "among", i.e. no comparison (e.g. "among X-s I am Y"). When a living entity is born, it's no lesser than a phenomena. Whatever is influential, is part of divine opulence only [BG 10.41]. Hence Kandarpa is related more with procreation & less with sex.


"So if being kandarpa is ideal and not sinful then, does this mean using contraceptive methods specifically condoms, and birth control pills must be a sin because we waste our seed without a reason (i.e being non-kandarpa)?"

If sex is done for sense gratification, then yes it creates an attachment. But certain sins are inevitable. For example, a hungry kid will steal the food, rather than thinking about sin. Same goes for adults wanting sexual pleasure.
One can just hold it from outside, but would continue to crave from within, which accumulates in even bigger sin of Dambha(hypocrisy) [BG 3.6].

A way is to commit an action & offer it to god, who stays within as a consumer of all senses. If one's conscience is convinced about "I am not the do-er" then there is No attachment.

BG 18.14 — The particular place(body) also [as] performer and various organs of different types and different gestures and the Divine is the fifth.
BG 18.15 — By body - speech - mind, human initiates whichever actions, [be it] justful or reverse, these five are the causes.
18.16 — These(above listed) being there, one who sees self as the do-er due to unintelligence, that ignorant certainly doesn't see [properly].

Current foods - scaled high in taste quotient are amplifier of "mode of passion" (Rajas guna), which increases sensual desires. Amorous pleasure (sex) is 1 among them. One can overcome it in following ways:

  1. Check on food & control the desires properly
  2. Have sex & take the responsibility of children (just to make it godly?)
  3. Use contraceptive methods for birth control & safety; Parallely, don't be divulged into it too much

With today's time, option 3 is better. Apart from high population growth, if a child is born, then parents have to brought it up. Abandoning an innocent is the worst thing to do. Better to pull out rather than pulling out from the responsibility.

According to Osho, contraceptives are great blessings to mankind.

  • 2
    You indirectly justified sex for pleasure. Your comparison of "food for survival" and "urge for sex" is not apt. Also, BG 3.6, doesn't suggest/uphold to take sensual pleasures. It just says, the person is called hypocrite when he gives importance to sensual objects while leading a Spiritual path. There is no "Dharma"or rightful purpose in doing sex using contraceptive methods. I think, 'Bhoga' ( here using contraceptive methods) reduces his/her Ojas and increases attachment and it is not suggested to Spiritual aspirant as it leads to attachment. Rajas is very difficult to annihilate. – The Destroyer Jul 26 '16 at 12:16
  • @TheDestroyer, IMO "urge for sex" is as good as "urge for food" (even when not for survival). These urges have to be subsidized either by controlling or consumption. How Dharma has anything to do with "sex" at all? Having sensual pleasure of any kind shouldn't make it non-DhArmik. In that way, any sensual pleasure is non-DhArmik, be it Krishna asking Arjuna to enjoy kingdoms, listening to nice music, breathing fresh air, drinking fruit juice instead of water & so on. Sex is 1 of the senses. Problem is with too much of indulgence into senses. Again "too much" differs from person to person. – iammilind Jul 26 '16 at 12:37
  • @TheDestroyer, In my answer, I mostly agree with OP. Also, I haven't mentioned: "BG 3.6 upholding to take sensual pleasure", as you wrote. But it's reverse: BG 3.6 - One, who after withdrawing the organs of action, sits mentally recollecting the objects of the senses, that one, of deluded mind, is called a hypocrite. Means, if one 'controls' any sense (here sex) from outside, but inside the mind, he/she craves for it, then it's called Dambha. In bid to be Kandarpa, one may end up committing bigger sin of such pretense. BTW, regarding Bhoga, Ojas & Rajas, your analysis is correct. – iammilind Jul 26 '16 at 12:53
  • 2
    please don't compare vyasa's niyoga with vulgar intercourse of modern human-cum-animals, if you don't know the difference between normal intercourse and niyoga please read about it. There are various rules and limit to do niyoga a Rishi can only perform max 3 niyoga's in his life (this rule was imposed to stop the misuse of Niyoga process). Again you are speaking like a person with multiple personalities one time you are quoting intelligent quotes from BG and one time you are talking silly things like mating with other women..sorry for hard words, you are comparing kaliyuga people with saints. – Yogi Jul 26 '16 at 13:35
  • 4
    @iammilind Yogi is right, Niyoga is a rare exception to the general rule about not having intercourse outside of marriage. – Keshav Srinivasan Jul 26 '16 at 15:09

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .