This post is part 2 of a three-part series about Alice B. Stockham MD (Part 1). This part educates lovers on the practice.

Stockham admits that for novice Karezza explorers, the practice will sound impossible. As a doctor, she patiently explains that the flow of semen is not essential to life or health, but that like tears, semen can remain “on tap” until summoned.

Practical application

She reports that scores of married men and women attest that such self-control is perfectly and easily possible. And, indeed, some of the most inspiring parts of her book are the letters from satisfied practitioners, which she reproduces at its end. Here is an excerpt from one written by a young husband, married for 4 years:

I am a young man, 24 years of age, enjoying the most vigorous health. For two years after becoming engaged I delayed marriage, simply because I did not think my income sufficient to support a wife and the children which I regarded as an inevitable consequence. Happily for me a friend, who knew my circumstances, wrote me about Zugassent’s Discovery [i.e., making love without orgasm]. The ideas contained in this discovery were so different from all my preconceived ideas of what constituted marital happiness, that I was inclined to reject them as utterly impracticable and absurd. But the more I thought of the matter the more clearly I saw that if there was a possibility of these new ideas being true, they were exactly adapted to a man in my circumstances, and that they made my marriage immediately practicable.

The wholly new thought that retaining the vital force within himself would naturally make a man stronger, clearer and better also seemed to me not irrational. With some misgivings, therefore, I determined to venture upon marriage, and it has been completely successful. I have had a continuous honeymoon for four years. I have never been conscious of any irksome restraint or asceticism in my sexual experience; and my self-control and strength, mental and physical, have greatly increased since my marriage. In the light of my own experience I regard the idea that the seminal fluid is a secretion that must be got rid of as being the most pernicious and fatal one that can possibly be taught to young people. J.G.

Stockham reminds us that we are not mere machines, to be buffeted by circumstance and environment, but rather machinists with control of our creative forces. Through knowledge we can recognize our unlimited resources and the ability to remove our self-created limitations.

Marital harmony

Stockham assures her readers that at no time does this learned control deliver more contentment than during marital sex. She may have lacked access to recent neurochemical research about the unfortunate aftereffects of over-stimulating the brain’s reward circuit during sex but she correctly observed that,

Men who are borne down with sorrow because their wives are nervous, feeble and irritable, have it in their power, through Karezza, to restore the radiant hue of health to the faces of their loved ones, strength and elasticity to their steps and harmonious action to every part of their bodies. By manifestation of tenderness and endearment, the husband may develop a response in the wife through her love nature, which thrills every fibre into action and radiates tonic to every nerve.

She viewed Karezza as the antidote to the “many hearts broken and hopes blasted” mainly because selfishness and personal gratification drove sexual relations during marriage. She taught that marital unhappiness resulted chiefly from ignorance of the psycho-physiological laws governing sexual union.

Only when souls flowing together, acting as one, distinct in individuality, but united in their action are thus mated, are the psycho-physiological laws met and satisfied….

There can be no true marriage unless attraction, affinity and harmony first exist in the soul.

With the practice of Karezza, the selfish element is ruled out, and every consummation of passion becomes a true marriage sacrament.

Karezza so consummates marriage that through the power of will, and loving thoughts, the crisis is not reached, but a complete control by both husband and wife is maintained throughout the entire relation, a conscious conservation of creative energy.

Neither asceticism nor repression

Stockham points out that most of us confound “continence” erroneously with “abstinence.” In fact, lovers can be continent and still enjoy both intercourse and contentment.

According to Stockham, Karezza is a form of spiritual companionship. Partners seek union and mutual soul development rather than fleeting passionate gratification. Yet it is apparent from her writing that the emphasis is on loving closeness, rather than denial of pleasure.

Karezza is a symbol of the perfect union of two souls in marriage, it is the highest expression of mutual affection, and gives to those practicing it revelations of strength and power.

…Karezza does not lead to asceticism or repression, but rather to appropriation and expression. In acknowledging the life source and conscientiously devoting the creative principle to achievement, to the activities and purposes of life, one is put in possession of new powers and possibilities.

Stockham suggests thoughtful preparation prior to engaging in Karezza

Lover-like attentions and kindly acts prophesy love’s appointed consummation. These bind heart to heart and soul to soul.

She also suggests achieving the right frame of mind via reading and meditation.

The reading should exalt the spirit, reminding one of the power and source of life.

Ideally the meditation should focus on giving up one’s will and preconceptions in order to allow cosmic intelligence to furnish new inspiration.

The final post of this blog series will recount Stockham’s further suggestions on how to master Karezza as well as its spiritual implications.

Alice B. Stockham MD – Karezza’s creator (Part 1)

Alice B. Stockham MD – Karezza’s creator (Part 3)

Free copy of Karezza: Ethics of Marriage