Brahmacharya: right use of energy

For every parent there will come a day that a particular conversation with children is needed about the sexual organs or just sex. Join Chaja in this blog on how she might include Brahmacharya to explain sexual energy to her children.

Through a regular yoga practice, prana – sometimes also called the life force or vital energy gets stimulated and activates the kundalini energy. Kundalini energy is an energy curled up at the base of the spine that rises up through the sushumna nadi – the spiritual channel which flows through the centre of the spinal cord – when awakened and can lead to a deeper consciousness, if not enlightenment.

Yogis who have experienced the kundalini energy know how this arouses a sexual energy. Experienced yogis also know how to keep that energy circulating in order not to lose it, but to get to a really blissful state.

Different approach

This brings me to the fourth yama, brahmacharya, which means the ‘right use of energy’. In a very spiritual and conservative context it was meant to conserve that sexual energy, especially as a yogi.

It’s an energy that has a very strong power that can – and actually should be – used very creatively. It’s an energy that can guide you differently in your interactions with yourself, others and your environment. Maybe nowadays it could be more regarded as an energy that can stimulate the celebration of life.

When I was in a Satsang with French Swami Paramatma Saraswati he referred to Brahmacharya as follows: “The real goal of sexuality is not pleasure, but one that is bigger than existence and sharing. You are not looking for benefits, but you are concentrated and mastering the skill of giving.”

He suggested that this is how children should be educated about sexuality.

I find this very interesting to explore, but as a parent and yogi, I can only do that up to a particular extent. I have experienced the kundalini energy, but it’s not activated permanently. So how could I bring my children in contact with that? They’re not on the yoga mat every morning. I could only describe it to them, once they get to an appropriate age, and explain what this vital energy does to me and how I have used it.

At school, sex education offers a wide and important range of topics related to sex and sexuality, exploring values and beliefs, biology, relationships and safety. But the experience of prana isn’t part of that.

My children and Brahmacharya

When in the future my children tell me about their first experiences of sensual sensations, I could explain to them that it’s a very strong energy inside them, which they can use very effectively for themselves.

It’s an energy that can stimulate a very confident intimacy with themselves. One that will encourage them to be fully present not only with themselves, but with others, the environment and even life. It’s an inner intimacy that can lead to a most relaxed state and an enriched life.

I find this actually a very important message for my children. They are growing up in a very challenging society and they should at least be informed that they have tools inside to stay safe, relaxed, healthy. Why shouldn’t they be aware that they can obtain a permanently high level of (creative) energy?

When they start noticing this energy, I would find it beautiful if they could experience it as a way of deep concentration and giving. Sharing their insights of the creativity of life.

It’s fascinating to say and imagine all of this in theory, but the interesting challenge awaiting me as a mother is educating them about this different approach to sexual energy!


About Chaja van Boesschoten

Chaja is a Hatha yoga teacher, international project manager and digital writer. She has become so captivated by the knowledge of yoga science and the immense possibilities of the breath, that her life has become devoted to yoga.

Chaja was born in The Netherlands, she is married to a Scottish man and has two sons who were born in two different countries. She now lives in Italy and finds it beautiful to use the knowledge of different languages and experiences to transmit yoga. Yoga is available to everyone, but she sees the importance to bring it to people who are possibly unaware of it, to people who live in socially vulnerable situations, to people suffering mentally (as a consequence of the pandemic e.g.) and to influencers.

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