When people are seeking general wellbeing, it is alright for them to do yoga and continue with their lifestyles. But when a person’s intensity becomes such that life is no longer important for him—and the very basis of life or what is beyond life becomes much more important than this life itself—then if you compel him to live the kind of life that everybody else is living, that becomes a hell for him.
For a person who wants to walk the path alone, if you force him to walk with somebody else who is
not willing or fit to walk this path, it becomes a torture for both people.
At the same time, if you initiate a person who wants to get married into brahmacharya, that is another kind of torture. Brahmacharya appears in the life of a person who is beginning to see that there is no point seeking outwards for happiness, joy or peace. He has begun to understand that it has to be sought inward. Once he has understood that, the only way is the inner way, if he does not go on this path, he creates suffering both for himself and for the people around him.
All of us have eaten mangos, but how many of us have planted mango trees, made them grow and then eaten mangos? Most people have eaten mangoes because somebody else planted the mango trees. In every society, of a thousand people, at least ten people have to take care to plant mango trees. Similarly with this, a few people have to take the path of brahmacharya. Brahmachari—“brahman” means “the divine”, “charya” means “the path”.
If you are on the path of the divine, you are a brahmachari. People may think a brahmachari is making a great sacrifice and is being denied life. But it is not so at all. If someone is a brahmachari only by dress, yes it is true, life is torture. They have missed this world and the other world also. But for a person who is truly walking the path of the divine, the petty pleasures that the world offers will become totally meaningless. Once you enjoy the inner pleasures of your being, the external pleasures become totally meaningless.
So does it mean everyone should become a brahmachari? No. Everyone should become a brahmachari, not necessarily in terms of lifestyle, but internally. Brahmacharya does not just mean celibacy. That is just one of the aspects that have been taken up as a supportive system.
To become a brahmachari means you are ecstatic by your own nature. You can be married and still be a brahmachari. It is possible because you are joyful by your own nature; you are not trying to extract joy from your husband or wife. This is how it should be. The whole world should be brahmachari. Everybody should be joyful by their own nature. If two people come together, it should be more a sharing of joy, not extracting joy from each other.
The author is a prominent spiritual leader.www.isha.sadhguru.org