In the bygone period under the influence of religious training, social system and etiquettes when youths were had sexual desires, they used to subdue them and control themselves.
Question: Is masturbation harmful?
Answer: If some ignorant doctors and not so educated philosophers try to prove that masturbation unnecessarily shown as considered a taboo to young people. But majority of the letters received from patients related to this, and observations show that this is denying the obvious and a deception for youth.
Now we present an excerpt of a well-grounded scholarly treatise, adopted from the treatise of a famous expert of psychology (Dr. Shirazi), which is a clear reply to this question.
Youths face many complicated issues, out of which one is sex. As a matter of fact, at this stage of life, sexual desires assume a form, and after some enquiries the youth become aware that this is natural. And all kinds of sexual temptations and incitements blow fire of lust into the temperament of the youth.
In the bygone period under the influence of religious training, social system and etiquettes when youths were had sexual desires, they used to subdue them and control themselves. Very rarely they drew themselves near to sexual incitements.
But in the present world, the scenes on the streets and in homes, sexual propaganda, advertisements and nudity in magazines, newspapers, cinemas and films and entertaining stories on television (which continue in many episodes as soap opera for quite a long time) all this together act as an effective role model. As a result of which, the youth of this new world face too much of sexual arousal.
This is the stage when the youths learn from the luscious youths of their age or they have nocturnal discharge and since they get pleasure in this, they repeat the factors which give them this pleasure and this slowly leads to masturbation and creates a big problem in his life.
Some physicians and experts of psychology have the opinion that masturbation is a natural act. They consider it essentially for humans and animals. But they don’t keep this thing in mind that if this act is done repeatedly and the situation goes to such an extent that this act is performed several times a week what can be the proportion of loss to the youth with regard to his physical and psychological development. Unfortunately this habit grows to a great extent and since the tools of this are easily accessible the youth becomes habitual and it is very difficult for him to get out of this habit.
The Unfortunate Results of this Habit
Research conducted in the last few years, and specially this research and observation, which we have done with regard to two thousand youths, it is proved and universally admitted that the subject of masturbation should not be considered as an ordinary one. To explain this in detail it is necessary to mention about the sexual glands and organs (i.e. physiology).
A sign of adulthood is discharge of semen from the cells of the testicles. In every drop of semen there are millions of male eggs and a special sticky fluid comes out of the glands of scrotum and through the tube of the semen it reaches the sac of semen (sperm), which is at the back of the bladder.
The sack of semen gradually gets filled up and some part of semen gets absorbed in the body and helps in the development of limbs and is a stimulant to sexual desire but it is necessary that its bigger (more) quantity should get out and be useful in producing children.
Those youths, who are less fond of sexual excitements and act on religious beliefs and laws of healthy life, keep away from wrong arousals, when their sac of semen gets filled up. Generally semen comes out in nocturnal discharge and in this way the biological remains in the body are expelled. Therefore it is nothing to worry about.
But those youth whose factors of sexual incitements are too much and who pass their days in a form of deprivation consider masturbation as the only way to give respite to the mind. And since after every sexual incitement the person tries to find solace in masturbation, he repeats this act every time.
And when this act is being performed repeatedly and reaches several times a week, this psychological and physical (sexual) condition differs from the natural condition and his system of sexual balance is destroyed. The greatest sign of it is weakness in the sexual organ. Its elucidation is that:
When the fulfillment of sexual arousal is done in a natural way in the form of marriage the contemplation of sense of touch and by means of other senses, in the brain of the youth, the center of his sexual desires gets stirred up. And on the basis of the structure of human body, the effect, which is carried to the center of mind through eyes and sense of touch etc. creates sexual act, as a result the sexual act is performed in a natural way.
But masturbation is just the opposite and it is another way in which imagination and contemplation of some special scenes and to touch a part of the body takes the place of natural factors of sexual act. In this way it creates a wrong system of action in the orbit of sexual behavior.
When this act is repeated several times and this wrong action becomes strong in the youth, it causes him to fail in having sex in a natural way. Because the natural system of sex in him is already destroyed and because of this at the time of consummation of marriage he does not find himself fit.
This situation makes him very much terrified and embarrassed; because his repeated masturbation for temporary satisfaction has affected his personality and psychology.
No doubt, in such a situation because of that act which the youth performs with force (in repetition), which becomes the cause of his tension, embarrassment and fear and confusion, rather than relieving him from tension. However if he rejects this contemptible habit absolutely and guards his peace of mind and instead of that adopts some good habit he definitely would become eligible to be healthy and hearty.
The physical misery of those engaged in masturbation
One important point, which is worth attention here, is that as we have already discussed before, a part of semen is absorbed in the body and causes development of the youth. That becomes effective not only in the development of his physical strength, but has great effect in his advancement and progress.
When this matter is thrown out because of repeated masturbation, then other than creating defect in the complete strength formation of sexual organ it becomes the cause of thinness, weakness in personality, weakness in desire, reduction in strength, shyness and shortfall in the psychological strength.
It will be better that, to emphasize those two subjects we go through the declaration of those who engaged themselves in masturbation, and failed in their act after marriage or do not get pleasure in sexual intercourse with the wife or they are cool in the approach to their wives and are prey to weakness in sexuality.
A married youth has this to say:
“I love my wife to the extent of worshipping her, but I don’t get pleasure while having intercourse with her, and this pains me.”
A lady says:
“Three months have passed since my marriage, but I don’t understand why in the eyes of my husband I am just a log (of dried wood).”
A youthful man says:
Since I became balig (mature physically), I used to perform this shameful act repeatedly. After that I did not get success in intercourse with my wife, but when I am alone, just at the thought if it I get an erection (movement).
When two other youths were contacted, they said that because of doing this act repeatedly we are not in a position to do intercourse with our wives, and we are very ashamed because of this.
One more youth said:
“I married six months ago, but unfortunately, because of being in the habit of this (masturbation), I just could not succeed in my duty towards of wife (consummation of marriage)”
It is also necessary to discuss this point that those who remain aloof and like to live a secluded life, are more prone to get into this habit, therefore it is necessary that, the youth should refrain from remaining solitude without any reason and he should choose and select for himself good and believing friends and control or bring an end to this risk.
Weakness of Personality and Apprehension
Another loss that incurs to the youths because of this habit is this that, most of them after performing this act feel ashamed and remorseful and promise to their own self that they will not repeat it. But unfortunately when the things prompting them become readily available, they again do it.
Repeating this remorse every time and making intent repeatedly gives too much of pain to their soul. And it becomes the cause of the youth’s personality, weakens his determinations and he becomes victim of doubt and superstition etc.
In short, in the issues pertaining to sex, masturbation, by putting the system of psychological response of action on the wrong path creates disturbance in the sense of pleasure and feeling of strength and it result is apparent in the form of disgrace, inferiority complex and dispersion of personality, besides that, its effect can be on the development of youths. (Excerpts from Dr. Shirazi’s thesis).
To avoid these dangers the youth should not unnecessarily become a prey to fear and dread, but he should fight this evil habit with all his might, determination and complete faith.
First of all they should try to remain away from the means of artificial arousal like pornography etc. They should cast off above things from their reach all together and make a firm determination that they will not go near those things.
After that, they should select good friends, avoid remaining alone in a room to the extent he should not sleep alone, select good and beneficial exercises and fill his leisure time in activities pertaining to health. He should never remain idle.
He should strictly refrain from people who are astray and promiscuous and he should inculcate some good habits and keep away from the bad habit.
They should never get deceived by poisonous writings of half trained quacks and foolish psychologists who try to justify and assure him about this contemptible act.
The selection taken from the “Philosophy of Islamic Laws” by Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi.