Sex only for procreation

Buddhist ethical conduct including the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).
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SDC
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by SDC » Wed Dec 04, 2019 3:28 pm

Moved to "Sila" since the OP implies a request for conjecture.

binocular
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by binocular » Wed Dec 04, 2019 3:36 pm

Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
What about the sutta quoted above? There the Buddha is advising not only who to have sex with but when and how (vaginal only).

Are there any Theravadin writers/thinkers who have made an argument that sex should only be vaginal and for reproduction only?
If one is seeing the matter from the perspective that even lay people should do things ("should" as in: it's in their best interest to do things in a particular way) purposefully, and not wastefully, not playfully, not for intoxication, not for putting on bulk, nor for beautification, then this can give some clues as to what should and shouldn't be done.
So, for example, the way a bulimic person treats food is wasteful: binge eating and then inducing vomitting is wasteful (among other things).
Apply this same logic to other areas of life.

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Ceisiwr
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by Ceisiwr » Wed Dec 04, 2019 3:41 pm

binocular wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 3:36 pm
Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
What about the sutta quoted above? There the Buddha is advising not only who to have sex with but when and how (vaginal only).

Are there any Theravadin writers/thinkers who have made an argument that sex should only be vaginal and for reproduction only?
If one is seeing the matter from the perspective that even lay people should do things ("should" as in: it's in their best interest to do things in a particular way) purposefully, and not wastefully, not playfully, not for intoxication, not for putting on bulk, nor for beautification, then this can give some clues as to what should and shouldn't be done.
So, for example, the way a bulimic person treats food is wasteful: binge eating and then inducing vomitting is wasteful (among other things).
Apply this same logic to other areas of life.

Does that apply to a lay person who wishes to stick to keeping the 5 precepts only?
“The world has arisen in the six.
The world has commune in the six.
Holding on to these very six.
The world finds itself in a fix.”


binocular
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by binocular » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:32 pm

Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 3:41 pm
Does that apply to a lay person who wishes to stick to keeping the 5 precepts only?
Buddhism isn't a religion of commandments.
The shoulds apply only in the sense of "In order to get X, one should/must do Y".

If someone isn't all that interested in making an end to suffering, the Buddha's way, then, clearly, they will not apply themselves much in that direction. It's not like other people are going to burn them at the stakes for it or something like that.


Other than that, I pick up a tacitly implied theme in many discussions about lay people: That it is somehow okay for lay people to engage in greed, lust (esp. lust), because as lay people they're not going to suffer the bad consequences for doing so the way a monk would if he were to do the same things.
"Yeah, hey, you're a lay practitioner, so you can act in lust, no biggie, no seriously bad consequences for you for doing this." --- Eh??

polo
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by polo » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:02 am

I feel the need to address this topic again because the whole idea that sex is only for procreation is just simply beyond my ability to comprehend how this could be done.
Just imagine you sleeping in bed about 2 am in the morning you have an erection and your wife who is sleeping next to you is naked, so it's only nature you try to stick it in the place where it belongs. I don't think you will be thinking about procreation. The desire will overcome everything coming its way like a tsunami wave.
Well from my experience not only sex is difficult to control even masturbation is difficult to control. When I was at puberty I masturbated so much that my elder brother who was a very understanding and kind person suggested that he tied my hands to prevent me from masturbating.
If we really face reality there is pretty little you could do about it if you are living a normal life. Unless you become a monk then that's a totally different environment you live in conducive for a life of celibacy.
Don't forget you make love everywhere in the kitchen, in the shower room, in the car so your animal desire doesn't allow you to plan ahead to procreate or not to procreate. It's quite impossible task. That's also the reason for population explosion on this planet.

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DooDoot
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by DooDoot » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:43 am

polo wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:02 am
I feel the need to address this topic again because the whole idea that sex is only for procreation is just simply beyond my ability to comprehend how this could be done.
I guess, before there was birth control, when women once understood the consequences, possibly 80% of them could control their husbands; the other 20% lived submissively. I suppose controlling pregnancy with self-control once upon a time was similar to avoiding sex so to avoid contracting AIDS. That's probably why men used to go to war so easily. Frustration. :)
In five ways, young householder, should a wife as the West be ministered to by a husband:

(i) by being courteous to her,
(ii) by not despising her,
(iii) by being faithful to her,
(iv) by handing over authority [in the bedroom] to her,
(v) by providing her with adornments.

DN 31
Mendicants, there are these five powers of a female. What five?

Attractiveness, wealth, relatives, children, and ethical behavior. These are the five powers of a female.

A female living at home with these five powers has her husband under her mastery [under her thumb].

https://suttacentral.net/sn37.27/en/sujato
There is always an official executioner. If you try to take his place, It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood. If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter, you will only hurt your hand.

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DooDoot
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by DooDoot » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:49 am

Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
What about the sutta quoted above?
The sutta appears addressed to the Brahmin priestly caste only; who i imagine were expected to have some self-control. It appears the sutta about 'sex only for procreation' does not apply to the other castes. Still, I imagine people were acutely concerned about unwanted pregnancy; thus the suttas we have mentioning the "gandhabba" ("sperm" or "male potency") as a condition for pregnancy.
Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
There the Buddha is advising not only who to have sex with but when and how (vaginal only).
I grew up in the 1970s & 80s, the era of the swinging 1960s sexual revolution. We chased girls, like most teenagers brainwashed by Cultural Marxism. But there was no movie pornography available. The only porno we looked at was Playboy or Penthouse Magazine or occasionally something else that was found. But "non-vaginal" ("anal") sex was never on our radar. We never talked about anal sex; let alone imagined it. I imagine the current normalization of anal sex is basically due to internet pornography (rather than due to any natural inclination). I imagine viewing anal sex is more addictive thus more commercial.
There is always an official executioner. If you try to take his place, It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood. If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter, you will only hurt your hand.

https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/paticcasamuppada
https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/anapanasati

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Bundokji
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by Bundokji » Thu Dec 05, 2019 10:06 am

I think Christian theology was influenced by the Natural Law approach to ethics, which preceded Christianity

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_law
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.

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Dhammanando
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by Dhammanando » Sat Dec 07, 2019 12:43 pm

Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
What about the sutta quoted above? There the Buddha is advising not only who to have sex with but when and how (vaginal only).
I don't think the Buddha is advising anything at all in the Doṇa Sutta, nor has the sutta anything to do with the third precept. Rather, I think it's exactly what it appears to be: an account of the standards by which the brahmins of old thought that a brahmin should live, but which the brahmins of the Buddha's day had apparently abandoned. As such, it ties in with the Soṇa Sutta that precedes it, where the Buddha describes the five ways in which the ancient brahmin traditions were nowadays better observed by dogs than by brahmins. As I see it, these two suttas are to be read in the context of the Buddha's project of adopting and adapting the concept of a 'brahmin', replacing the brahmin-by-way-of-birth with the brahmin-by-way-of purity. One component of this project is the critical one of highlighting just how far the hereditary brahmins had fallen from the standards that they claimed to espouse.
Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
Are there any Theravadin writers/thinkers who have made an argument that sex should only be vaginal and for reproduction only?
I've never heard of any who teach this. If they did I don't think they'd get away with it. In Thailand, for example, even eight-year-old Buddhist Sunday School kids can recite the "Two Fives and Three Fours" - a Pali chant listing the factors of transgression for each of the five precepts.
“Keep to your own pastures, bhikkhus, walk in the haunts where your fathers roamed.
If ye thus walk in them, Māra will find no lodgement, Māra will find no foothold.”
— Cakkavattisīhanāda Sutta

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Ceisiwr
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by Ceisiwr » Sat Dec 07, 2019 4:00 pm

Dhammanando wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 12:43 pm
Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
What about the sutta quoted above? There the Buddha is advising not only who to have sex with but when and how (vaginal only).
I don't think the Buddha is advising anything at all in the Doṇa Sutta, nor has the sutta anything to do with the third precept. Rather, I think it's exactly what it appears to be: an account of the standards by which the brahmins of old thought that a brahmin should live, but which the brahmins of the Buddha's day had apparently abandoned. As such, it ties in with the Soṇa Sutta that precedes it, where the Buddha describes the five ways in which the ancient brahmin traditions were nowadays better observed by dogs than by brahmins. As I see it, these two suttas are to be read in the context of the Buddha's project of adopting and adapting the concept of a 'brahmin', replacing the brahmin-by-way-of-birth with the brahmin-by-way-of purity. One component of this project is the critical one of highlighting just how far the hereditary brahmins had fallen from the standards that they claimed to espouse.
Ceisiwr wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:45 pm
Are there any Theravadin writers/thinkers who have made an argument that sex should only be vaginal and for reproduction only?
I've never heard of any who teach this. If they did I don't think they'd get away with it. In Thailand, for example, even eight-year-old Buddhist Sunday School kids can recite the "Two Fives and Three Fours" - a Pali chant listing the factors of transgression for each of the five precepts.

Much appreciated
“The world has arisen in the six.
The world has commune in the six.
Holding on to these very six.
The world finds itself in a fix.”


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DooDoot
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by DooDoot » Sat Dec 07, 2019 7:59 pm

Ceisiwr wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 4:00 pm
Much appreciated
I offered a similar answer, here. Any mudita? :weep:
There is always an official executioner. If you try to take his place, It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood. If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter, you will only hurt your hand.

https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/paticcasamuppada
https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/anapanasati

D1W1
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by D1W1 » Fri Dec 13, 2019 11:49 am

Dan74 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:43 pm
Most of us have sex for pleasure, not for procreation. And the Buddha had repeatedly counselled that attachment to pleasure was to be abandoned. So attachment to pleasure, whether straight or gay, is to be eventually abandoned. It is also said that it is only uprooted by non-returners, right?

For the rest of us, it seems to me to be sensible to develop some mindfulness around it.
The definition of misconduct is having sex with certain prohibited person such as other people's partner, etc. But time has changed, would you put having sex with sex toys considered sexual misconduct?

Dan74
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by Dan74 » Fri Dec 13, 2019 12:00 pm

D1W1 wrote:
Fri Dec 13, 2019 11:49 am
Dan74 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:43 pm
Most of us have sex for pleasure, not for procreation. And the Buddha had repeatedly counselled that attachment to pleasure was to be abandoned. So attachment to pleasure, whether straight or gay, is to be eventually abandoned. It is also said that it is only uprooted by non-returners, right?

For the rest of us, it seems to me to be sensible to develop some mindfulness around it.
The definition of misconduct is having sex with certain prohibited person such as other people's partner, etc. But time has changed, would you put having sex with sex toys considered sexual misconduct?
Sex with sex toys is basically masturbation. Is masturbation sexual misconduct? I believe only for monks and a minor one. As lay practitioners, it seems to me, that the precepts and Buddhist ethics in general, are training rules. They help us not to harm others and ourselves, develop wholesome states and avoid unwholesome ones and progress in our practice. Nothing more, nothing less. So they have a purpose and we should consider that, rather the worry about the precise rule, IMO.
_/|\_

D1W1
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by D1W1 » Fri Dec 13, 2019 12:50 pm

Dan74 wrote:
Fri Dec 13, 2019 12:00 pm
D1W1 wrote:
Fri Dec 13, 2019 11:49 am
Dan74 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:43 pm
Most of us have sex for pleasure, not for procreation. And the Buddha had repeatedly counselled that attachment to pleasure was to be abandoned. So attachment to pleasure, whether straight or gay, is to be eventually abandoned. It is also said that it is only uprooted by non-returners, right?

For the rest of us, it seems to me to be sensible to develop some mindfulness around it.
The definition of misconduct is having sex with certain prohibited person such as other people's partner, etc. But time has changed, would you put having sex with sex toys considered sexual misconduct?
Sex with sex toys is basically masturbation. Is masturbation sexual misconduct? I believe only for monks and a minor one. As lay practitioners, it seems to me, that the precepts and Buddhist ethics in general, are training rules. They help us not to harm others and ourselves, develop wholesome states and avoid unwholesome ones and progress in our practice. Nothing more, nothing less. So they have a purpose and we should consider that, rather the worry about the precise rule, IMO.
It's quite popular belief or perhaps fact for some people that those who engage in sexual misconduct will be reborn as a gay or transgender person. If I am not mistaken I read somewhere if you masturbation with sex toys you will be reborn as gay too, the reason is it' is "unnatural" masturbation activity therefore they will have unnatural sexual inclination such as lesbian and things like that. What's your thought on this?

Dan74
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Re: Sex only for procreation

Post by Dan74 » Fri Dec 13, 2019 2:07 pm

D1W1 wrote:
Fri Dec 13, 2019 12:50 pm
Dan74 wrote:
Fri Dec 13, 2019 12:00 pm
D1W1 wrote:
Fri Dec 13, 2019 11:49 am


The definition of misconduct is having sex with certain prohibited person such as other people's partner, etc. But time has changed, would you put having sex with sex toys considered sexual misconduct?
Sex with sex toys is basically masturbation. Is masturbation sexual misconduct? I believe only for monks and a minor one. As lay practitioners, it seems to me, that the precepts and Buddhist ethics in general, are training rules. They help us not to harm others and ourselves, develop wholesome states and avoid unwholesome ones and progress in our practice. Nothing more, nothing less. So they have a purpose and we should consider that, rather the worry about the precise rule, IMO.
It's quite popular belief or perhaps fact for some people that those who engage in sexual misconduct will be reborn as a gay or transgender person. If I am not mistaken I read somewhere if you masturbation with sex toys you will be reborn as gay too, the reason is it' is "unnatural" masturbation activity therefore they will have unnatural sexual inclination such as lesbian and things like that. What's your thought on this?
I have no idea and don't find it particularly useful to speculate on these things.

It seems to me the energy is better spent bringing some awareness to such practices, if one engages in them. Seeing them for him- or her- self as unsatisfactory and unwholesome, leading to more craving rather than dispassion, and abandoning them. Easier said than done, but one has to get started somewhere.
_/|\_

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