Jewish Scriptures and Important Texts

Talmud: Emission, Masturbation

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Rabbi Johanan stated: Whosoever emits semen in vain deserves death, for it is said in Scripture, "And the thing which he [Onan] did [spilling his semen on the ground] was evil in the sight of the Lord, and He slew him also." [Gen. 38:9]

Rabbi Isaac and Rabbi Ammi said. He is as though he shed blood, for it is said in Scripture, "Ye that inflame yourselves among the terebinths, under every leafy tree, that slay the children in the valleys under the clefts of the rocks;" read not 'that slay' but 'that press out'.


Rab stated: 'A man who wilfully causes erection should be placed under the ban'. But why did he not say, 'This is forbidden'? Because the man merely incites his evil inclination against himself. R. Ammi, however, stated: He is called a renegade, because such is the art of the evil inclination: To-day it incites man to do one wrong thing, and to-morrow it incites him to worship idols and he proceeds to worship them.

There are others who read: R. Ammi stated, He who excites himself by lustful thoughts will not be allowed to enter the division of the Holy One, blessed be He. For here it is written, Was evil in the sight of the Lord, and elsewhere it is written, For Thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness; evil shall not sojourn with Thee.

R. Eleazar stated: Who are referred to in the Scriptural text, Your hands are full of blood? Those that commit masturbation with their hands.

It was taught at the school of R. Ishmael, Thou shalt not commit adultery implies, Thou shalt not practise masturbation either with hand or with foot.

Quoted from The Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Niddah Folio 13a, Chapter II

Quote of the Moment

"There are questions man has never asked himself; secret questions that the Innermost could solve. Like children in a dark night of existence, we wander about seeking to find for ourselves a way out of this darkness. Yet we never ask ourselves those questions that would bring a response from our Innermost. It is generally towards the end of one’s life that one asks a CERTAIN question which, if put in youth, would have been the means of changing one’s entire life, and one realises how many years of fruitless effort one could have been saved had this been done. How many people in meditation have ever asked themselves questions as though speaking to their Innermost? They will ask the Reality—God—for things, and they speak to Him; but do they ever receive a direct reply? The way to the Reality is through our Innermost—that part of the Reality within us—and if we aspire, and ask a certain question, when our Innermost replies a problem every serious seeker asks will be solved. This is symbolised in Wagner’s Parsifal."

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