Rules of Self-Realization Fellowship Monastic Order: Chastity

RULES OF SELF-REALIZATION FELLOWSHIP ORDER

CHASTITY

Rule: SRF renunciant disciples practice complete celibacy.

Reason:  Spiritual emancipation is not possible until the devotee has learned self-control and is master, not slave, of his five senses.

The following references in the SRF Lessons contain helpful basic information on this subject:

Step 1, Lesson 16, Page 4 — “The Four Related Forces”

Step 1, Lesson 22, Page 2 — “Life Force and Vital Power”

Step 2, Lesson 35, Page 2 — “Spiritualizing the Creative Force”

Step 3, Lesson 71, Page 2 — “Transmutation of Creative Energy into Spiritual Energy”

Step 5, Lesson 110, Page 2 — “The Story of Creation” — Part 5

The disciple may feel free to speak with his counselor about questions or difficulties he may have in the observance of this rule, which Paramahansaji defined as follows:

1. Absolute celibacy. An SRF resident renunciant is expected to maintain complete celibacy so long as he remains in an SRF ashram. After an initial training period as a Postulant, Novice, and Brahmachari or Brahmacharini, he may take a formal SRF vow of sannyas which constitutes a sacred pledge before God that the disciple will observe this rule for life, never marrying or leaving for any other reason the SRF path of renunciant discipleship.

2. Purity of body and mind. The disciple must strive to rid himself of impure thoughts by engaging in healthful exercise, constructive service, and scientific meditation.

3. Strict segregation of men and women renunciants. There will, of course, be instances when some conversation or association is unavoidable. The Ashram Administrator and Co-Administrator and the counselors who are responsible for upholding the ideal expressed by Paramahansaji in this regard will advise disciples as to the proper conduct in such instances.

4. Modesty in dress, speech, and conduct. A disciple should be willing to follow suggestions and to accept criticism, if it is deemed necessary, in these matters.

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