Young Men and Celibacy
Strict self-denial and raging bulls darting down the streets of Pamplona are seemingly a match made in opposite’s heaven. Existing on such differing ends of the logical spectrum, youthful vigor and committed patience are often at odds and fully demanding of energy and consciousness. This conflict is the home, if he so chooses, for the young man who desires to be celibate.
Celibacy, the voluntary abstaining from sex and marriage, is a life of withholding and withstanding. Young men are glorified for their brute, exhibition, fellowship, and lack of tire and restraint. All hail the ‘Young Buck’, yes all marvel at the feats of the ‘Young Stud’, and few notice the value of the young sage. The conquests of the brash are celebrated and the non-conformity of the celibate is vilified; excepting in religious circles where it is expected though still not praised. There is great value in discipline; the wisdom of celibacy should not be golden only to the priestly.
The young man who desires to be celibate is as much at war with himself as with the societal beckoning of conformity. Celibacy is by no means a simple want or a need, neither is it an aversion to sex or marriage. This misconception is at the heart of the alienation of the celibate, who grapples with human longings for intimacy and companionship as feverishly as those who dive in at first glance and repeatedly. His covenant is of love; his celibacy is a commitment to his future; to his forever. Celibacy is not a hatred of, celibacy is an intangible motivator, it is a journey of choosing to practice some and wait some. Life lived at a moderate pace, is living in control. Celibacy is not the brakes it is not even the vehicle, celibacy is the continuous movement towards the reward. It is evident that there are prizes for promiscuity, notches on the belt of the player and disappointments for the discarded. Celibacy takes you in a totally different direction.
Where does one channel the vitality of youth then? You do not want to waste your young-manhood, but if you are not chasing what are you doing with your time? The simply answer is every virtuous thing, with all the passion and strength you possess. Absence of sex and marriage does not stop you from any great aspiration or ideal; you have years to prepare your mind and body for both and you do not need to chase either for they too await the best you. Do not take the puss in a bag in your adolescence, twenties or thirties, never take the bag. Live everyday fully engaged, befriend and love. Learn, race, explore, invent, relax, perform, travel, do, and be. Celibacy empowers you, encourages you to be all you can be.
There is a time for everything under the sun, let the fire of your younger days burn bright and steady. Take the time; you'll be ready for sex and marriage, and priesthood. Take the time, make the right choice. Celibate and run the streets of Pamplona free as a young man in his prime, you can do both. Nothing is stopping you but you.
By Jason Ricardo Thomas