Sexual abstinence

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Purity rings are worn by some youth committed to the practice of sexual abstinence. Purity-Rings.jpg
Purity rings are worn by some youth committed to the practice of sexual abstinence.

Sexual abstinence or sexual restraint is the practice of refraining from some or all aspects of sexual activity for medical, psychological, legal, social, philosophical, moral, religious or other reasons. Sexual abstinence is distinct from asexuality, which is a sexual orientation where people do not feel sexual attraction. Celibacy is sexual abstinence generally motivated by factors such as an individual's personal or religious beliefs. [2] Sexual abstinence before marriage is required in some societies by social norms, or by law in some countries. It is a part of chastity.


Abstinence may be voluntary (when an individual chooses not to engage in sexual activity due to moral, religious, philosophical, or other reasons), an involuntary result of social circumstances (when one cannot find any willing sexual partners), or legally mandated (e.g. in countries where sexual activity outside marriage is illegal, in prisons etc.).


The ancient world discouraged promiscuity for both health and social reasons. [3] According to Pythagoras (6th century BCE) sex should be practiced in the winter, but not the summer, but was harmful to male health in every season because the loss of semen was dangerous, hard to control and both physically and spiritually exhausting, but had no effect on females. [3] This idea may have been merged with Zoroastrian ideas of good and evil in a philosophy known as Gnosticism, which influenced Christian and Islamic attitudes to sexual activity. [3] But others stated that the Christian religion's hold on to the ideal of sexual abstinence prior to the appearing of gnosticism and Zoroastrianism and its roots are to be found in the Old Testament (which is the base of the New Testament) in which virginity was required by law and marriage was especially protected (see Deuteronomy chapter 22).

Throughout history, and especially prior to the 20th century, there have been those who have held that sexual abstinence confers numerous health benefits. For males, lack of abstinence was thought to cause a reduction of vitality. In modern times, the argument has been phrased in biological terms, claiming that loss of semen through ejaculation results in a depletion of vital nutrients such as lecithin and phosphorus, which are also found at high levels in the brain. Conservation of the semen allegedly allows it to be reabsorbed back into the bloodstream and aid in the healthy development of the body. [4] [5] Along these lines, the noted German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche spoke of the positive physiological effects of abstinence: "The reabsorption of semen by the blood ... perhaps prompts the stimulus of power, the unrest of all forces towards the overcoming of resistances ... The feeling of power has so far mounted highest in abstinent priests and hermits" (quoted by Walter Kaufman in his classic, Nietzsche: Philosopher, Psychologist, Antichrist , p. 222). Before the "sexual revolution" of the 1960s, it was commonly believed by members of the medical profession that numerous mental and physical diseases in men were caused primarily by loss of nutrients through seminal discharge, and that the deliberate conservation of this substance would lead to increased health, vitality, and intellectual prowess. This also applied to masturbation, which was also thought to lead to bedwetting and hairy palms.

Some advantages in favor of sexual abstinence were also claimed by Walter Siegmeister, better known as Dr. Raymond W. Bernard, an early 20th-century American alternative health, esoteric writer, author and mystic, who formed part of the alternative reality subculture. In his essay entitled "Science discovers the physiological value of continence" (1957) he states: [6]

"[I]t is clear that there is an important internal physiological relation between the secretions of the sex glands and the central nervous system, that the loss of these secretions, voluntarily or involuntarily, exercises a detrimental effect on the nutrition and vitality of the nerves and brain, while, on the other hand, the conservation of these secretions has a vitalizing effect on the nervous system, a regenerating effect on the endocrine glands [,] and a rejuvenating effect on the organism as a whole."

Historically, there has been a swing from the sexually liberal end of the Industrial Revolution to the chaste values of the early Victorian period.[ citation needed ] This was then followed by a new puritanism from the late Victorian era to the mid-1900s.[ citation needed ] This important transformation often colors discussion of sexual behavior in the later 20th century. World War I began a return to sexual freedom and indulgence, but more often than not, the appearance of conforming to the earlier moral values of abstinence before marriage was retained.[ citation needed ] With the conclusion of World War II, the societal importance of abstinence declined.[ citation needed ] The advent of the first oral contraceptive pill and widely available antibiotics suppressed many consequences of wide and free sexual behavior,[ citation needed ] while social morals were also changing. By the 1970s, abandonment of premarital chastity was no longer taboo in the majority of western societies, and the reverse became true.[ citation needed ] Some cultural groups continued to place a value on the moral purity of an abstainer, but abstinence was caught up in a wider reevaluation of moral values.

During the early 20th century, prominent feminist and birth control advocate Margaret Sanger argued that abstinence from sexual activity led to greater endurance and strength, and was a sign of the best of the species:

"Though sex cells are placed in a part of the anatomy for the essential purpose of easily expelling them into the female for the purpose of reproduction, there are other elements in the sexual fluid which are the essence of blood, nerve, brain, and muscle. When redirected into the building and strengthening of these, we find men or women of the greatest endurance and greatest magnetic power. A girl can waste her creative powers by brooding over a love affair to the extent of exhausting her system, with the results not unlike the effects of masturbation and debauchery." [7]

J. D. Unwin was a British ethnologist and social anthropologist at Oxford University and Cambridge University. Unwin wrote several books including Sex and Culture, (1934). In Sex and Culture Unwin studied 80 primitive tribes and 6 known civilizations through 5,000 years of history and found a positive correlation between the cultural achievement of a people and the amount of sexual restraint which they observed. The author finds that the most culturally successful groups always exhibit lifelong monogamous relationships which include sexual abstinence outside of marriage. [8] According to Unwin, after a nation becomes prosperous it becomes increasingly liberal with regard to sexual morality and as a result loses its cohesion, its impetus and its purpose, ultimately having a negative effect on society: "The whole of human history does not contain a single instance of a group becoming civilized unless it has been absolutely monogamous, nor is there any example of a group retaining its culture after it has adopted less rigorous customs." [9]

During fertile period

Schematic indicating the fertile period of a woman Abstinence during fertile period.png
Schematic indicating the fertile period of a woman

Sexual abstinence can be practiced during the period in which the woman is fertile. [10]

Before marriage

Premarital chastity

In most cultural, ethical, and religious contexts, sex within marriage is not considered to be contrary to notions of chastity. Some religious systems prohibit sexual activities between a person and anyone other than a spouse of that person, as have past legal systems and societal norms. In such contexts, sexual abstinence was prescribed for unmarried individuals for the purpose of chastity. Chastity has been used as a synonym for sexual abstinence, they are similar but with different behavior and restrictions.[ citation needed ]

In some countries any sexual activity outside marriage is illegal. Such laws are mostly tied to religion and the legal and political traditions within the particular jurisdiction. Laws differ greatly from country to country. In some Muslim countries, such as Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, [11] Afghanistan, [12] [13] [14] Iran, [14] Kuwait, [15] Maldives, [16] Morocco, [17] Mauritania, [18] Qatar, [19] Sudan, [20] Yemen, [21] any form of sexual activity outside marriage is illegal.


In some parts of the world, people suspected of engaging in premarital or same-sex sexual activity can become victims of honor killings committed by their families. [22] [23] Stoning for sexual activity outside marriage is also a punishment in some places.[ citation needed ]

Abstinence-only sex education in the United States

Abstinence-only sex education is a form of sex education that teaches abstinence from sex, and often excludes many other types of sexual and reproductive health education, particularly regarding birth control and safe sex. Education programs which focus exclusively on abstinence have hardly been shown to delay sexual activity. [24] Such programs promote sexual abstinence until marriage and often also condemn the use of contraceptives as an alternative. Comprehensive sex education, by contrast, covers the use of contraceptives as well as abstinence. [25]

Organizations such as SIECUS have called abstinence-only programs "fear-based," and "designed to control young people's sexual behavior by instilling fear, shame, and guilt." [26] Author Judith Levine has argued that there might be a natural tendency of abstinence educators to escalate their messages: "Like advertising, which must continually jack up its seduction just to stay visible as other advertising proliferates, abstinence education had to make sex scarier and scarier and, at the same time, chastity sweeter." [27]

In spite of these criticisms, federal government support has made abstinence the de facto focus of sex education in the United States, so that opponents frequently adopt the line that abstinence education is acceptable only if it is combined with other methods, such as instruction in the use of condoms, and easy availability thereof. Most nations of Western Europe use more comprehensive measures, and in sharp contrast to the heated discussion in the U.S., abstinence is hardly discussed as an educational measure.[ citation needed ]

A U.S. federal government-promoted abstinence-only program was aimed at teens in 1981 in order to discourage premarital sex and unwanted pregnancies. However, recent studies conducted by Mathematica Policy Research showed ineffectiveness of this program. [28] The Responsible Education About Life Act was introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Christopher Shays (R-CT) to support age-appropriate sexual education. This program is focused to provide teenagers with science-based information on sexual health, so that they can make a sound decision regarding their sex-life. [29]

In 2006, the George W. Bush administration expanded abstinence programs from teens to adults, by introducing programs to encourage unmarried adults to remain abstinent until marriage. [30] Family-planning advocates and researchers denounced the program as unrealistic, due to the rising age of first-time marriage in the United States. [31] In 2009, the Barack Obama administration removed most of the funding from sexual-abstinence education, and instead used the money to fund the Office of Adolescent Health, designed to prevent teenage pregnancy through evidence-based programs. [32] During the Obama administration, between the years 2007 and 2017, the teen pregnancy rate in the US dropped by 50%, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [33]

Popularity and effectiveness

The advent of AIDS helped build a more favorable view of abstinence. However, a review of 13 U.S. sex-abstinence programs involving over 15,000 people by Oxford University found that they do not stop risky sexual behavior, or help in the prevention of unwanted pregnancy. [34] Other studies have found that abstinence-only education does little to affect the "age of sexual initiation; number of sexual partners; and rates of sexual abstinence, condom use, vaginal sex, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infections (STIs)". [35] Recently, the United States Congress also found similar results in a study conducted by Mathematica Policy Research on abstinence. [36] Currently, there are also issues as to what abstinence means: is it an abstinence from sexual intercourse, or from sexual behavior? Movements such as True Love Waits in America, which ask teenagers to refrain from sex before marriage, are heavily subscribed, but surveys of sexual behavior indicate an increase in the popularity of oral sex. [37]

Effects of abstinence on society

Alfred Kinsey is widely regarded as the first and among the most influential figures in American sexology; his research is cited as having paved the way for a deeper exploration into sexuality among sexologists and the general public, and as having liberated female sexuality. [38] [39] According to Alfred Kinsey sexual ignorance led to real suffering in society and that sexual liberation, as opposed to sexual abstinence, was the key to both a strong marriage and a happy life. Kinsey believed that abstinence was a sexual dysfunction: "The only kinds of sexual dysfunction are abstinence, celibacy and delayed marriage." [40]

Long-term abstinence as a lifestyle

Young Buddhist monks in Tibet. Celibacy is required for some religious orders like Jainism. Young monks of Drepung.jpg
Young Buddhist monks in Tibet. Celibacy is required for some religious orders like Jainism.

Lifelong (or at least long-term) abstinence, often associated with philosophical or religious asceticism, is distinguished from chastity before marriage. Abstinence is often viewed as an act of self-control over the natural desire to have sex. The display of the strength of character allows the abstainer to set an example for those not able to contain their "base urges".[ citation needed ] At other times, abstinence has been seen as a great social skill practiced by those who refuse to engage with the material and physical world. Some groups and teachers that propose sexual abstinence consider it an essential means to reach a particular intellectual or spiritual condition, or that chastity allows one to achieve a required self-control or self-consciousness. [41]

Abstinence in religions

Some religions regard chastity as a virtue expected of faithful adherents. This usually includes abstinence from sex for the unmarried, and fidelity to a marriage partner.

In some religions, some groups of people are expected to remain unmarried and to abstain from sex completely. These groups include monks, nuns, and priests in various sects of Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism and Christianity. Chastity is required of the respective sacerdotal orders. The Shakers, on the other hand, impose chastity in the form of celibacy for all members, even forgoing procreation such as the case with the castration cult.


"But because of sexual sins, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband."

— 1 Corinthians 7:2, EHV [42]

"Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral."

— Hebrews 13:4, NIV [43]

Most Christians teach that sexual intercourse should occur exclusively within marriage, and that sexual abstinence is the norm outside of that. Sex between people not married to each other is either fornication or adultery. But for married couples, Paul of Tarsus wrote that they should not deprive each other, except for a short time for devotion to prayer. [44]

Catholicism defines chastity as the virtue that moderates the sexual appetite. [45] Unmarried Catholics express chastity through sexual abstinence. Sexual intercourse within marriage is considered chaste when it retains the twofold significance of union and procreation. [46]

This is why the Catholic Church does not condone the use of contraception, even within the confines of the marital union. [47] Pope John Paul II spoke on contraception not only as its nature as sinful in the eyes of the church, but also in regards to its dangerous nature to harm married couples. Without the openness to life, John Paul said, the gift of oneself within the bond of marriage is incomplete. The Catholic Church does, however, condone the practice of periodical abstinence during a woman's natural cycle of fertility for married couples who, for just reasons, do not wish to have a child at that time. This is a key component of Natural Family Planning, which is set apart from contraceptive measures on the grounds that it does not interrupt the natural order of the marital union with artificial means. [48]

The entirety of the Catholic Church's stance on contraception is predicated by the way the Catholic Church views marriage, insofar as marriage is an intimate human union between man and a woman wherein the two mutually give of themselves in their entirety for the good of the other and live in such a way that is open to procreation. [49]

See also the Evangelical counsels. The Methodist Church teaches that "Although all persons are sexual beings whether or not they are married, sexual relations are only clearly affirmed in the marriage bond." [50] The Eastern Orthodox Church teaches chastity until marriage. But even then, in accordance with the teaching of the Apostle Paul, periods of abstinence are encouraged among married couples. Traditionally, Orthodox spouses abstain from physical relations on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays the eves of Great Feasts and throughout the four lenten periods (Great Lent, Nativity Fast, Apostles' Fast and Dormition Fast).

However, the United Church of Christ is "liberal in their approaches, believing that individuals must decide for themselves how to express their sexual nature." [51]


The Indian tradition of Brahmacharya places great emphasis on abstinence as a way of harnessing the energy of body and mind towards the goal of spiritual realization. In males, the semen (Vīrya) is considered sacred, and its preservation (except when used for procreation) and conversion into higher life-energy (Ojas) is considered essential for the development of enhanced intellectual and spiritual capacities.

The blending of sexual and spiritual is portrayed in Hindu iconography, as seen in ubiquitous phallic and vaginal iconography in Hindu temples and for instance in the Kharjuraho and Konarak medieval temples, where thousands of couples having sex in endless positions, and with the gods, are carved in deep bas-relief. However, these depictions of sex are not generally understood to be a license for free sexual practices, but are instead meant to celebrate procreation as an integral part of existence in the universe. In actual practice, it is highly encouraged that both males and females abstain from pre-marital sex and exercise chastity, which still exists today in Hindu cultures. [52]


Islam forbids intercourse outside of marriage (zina). [53] Meanwhile, maintaining celibacy as an act of piety is forbidden, while marriage for all who are able is strongly encouraged. Abstinence is practiced during the time of a woman's menstruation or istihadha. Abstinence from sexual intercourse is also practiced from dawn to dusk during days where fasting is observed. Also in the time of Hajj people are not allowed to have sexual relationships, because their body has to stay pure while performing pilgrimage.


Green colour in the Jain flag stands for brahmacharya In-jain.png
Green colour in the Jain flag stands for brahmacharya

Brahmacharya is one of the five major vows prescribed for the śrāvakā (layman) and ascetics in Jainism. For those Jains who adopt the path of monks, celibacy in action, words and thoughts is expected. For lay Jains who are married, the virtue of brahmacharya requires remaining sexually faithful to one's chosen partner (fidelity). For lay Jains who are unmarried, chaste living requires Jains to avoid sex before marriage. [55]

In the Jain monastic tradition, brahmacharya implies, among other things, the mandatory renunciation of sex and marriage. For a lay Jain, it represents a virtuous lifestyle devoid of constant sexual urges, that also includes simple living, meditation and other behaviors.


Judaism forbids intercourse outside marriage (which is termed znut or promiscuity), but has no ideal of chastity. Within marriage abstinence is also required during and following a woman's menstruation. The husband is not allowed to deprive sex from his wife, even if she is not fertile (known as mitzvat onah ).

Associated practices

Among some groups of people, the wearing of a purity ring is a reminder to oneself and others, that they are practicing sexual abstinence. [1] In order to aid their sobriety, some sexual abstinents partake in the usage of anaphrodisiacs. [56]

Historically, some individuals were said to wear a chastity belt, a locking item of clothing designed to prevent sexual intercourse. They were used to protect the wearer from rape or temptation. Some devices have been designed with additional features to prevent masturbation. Chastity belts have been created for males and females, ostensibly for the purpose of chastity. [57]

Abstinence-only education

Abstinence can help prevent the spread of sexually transmitted infections such as HIV, HPV, syphilis, etc. [58] However, abstinence-only education has been found to be less effective at preventing sexually transmitted infections and teenage pregnancy among adolescents than comprehensive sex education. [59] [60]

See also

Related Research Articles

Celibacy is the state of voluntarily being unmarried, sexually abstinent, or both, usually for religious reasons. It is often in association with the role of a religious official or devotee. In its narrow sense, the term celibacy is applied only to those for whom the unmarried state is the result of a sacred vow, act of renunciation, or religious conviction. In a wider sense, it is commonly understood to only mean abstinence from sexual activity.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Chastity</span> Ethic concept of temperance related to sexuality

Chastity, also known as purity, is a virtue related to temperance. Someone who is chaste refrains either from sexual activity considered immoral or any sexual activity, according to their state of life. In some contexts, for example when making a vow of chastity, chastity means the same as celibacy.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sexual intercourse</span> Copulation or penetrative sexual activity for reproduction or sexual pleasure

Sexual intercourse is a sexual activity typically involving the insertion and thrusting of the penis into the vagina for sexual pleasure or reproduction. This is also known as vaginal intercourse or vaginal sex. Other forms of penetrative sexual intercourse include anal sex, oral sex, fingering and penetration by use of a dildo. These activities involve physical intimacy between two or more individuals and are usually used among humans solely for physical or emotional pleasure and can contribute to human bonding.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Safe sex</span> Ways to reduce the risk of acquiring STDs

Safe sex is sexual activity using methods or contraceptive devices to reduce the risk of transmitting or acquiring sexually transmitted infections (STIs), especially HIV. "Safe sex" is also sometimes referred to as safer sex or protected sex to indicate that some safe sex practices do not eliminate STI risks. It is also sometimes used colloquially to describe methods aimed at preventing pregnancy that may or may not also lower STI risks.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Virginity</span> State of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse

Virginity is the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse. The term virgin originally only referred to sexually inexperienced women, but has evolved to encompass a range of definitions, as found in traditional, modern and ethical concepts. Heterosexual individuals may or may not consider loss of virginity to occur only through penile-vaginal penetration, while people of other sexual orientations often include oral sex, anal sex, or mutual masturbation in their definitions of losing one's virginity.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Abstinence pledge</span> Conmitment to refrain from drug usage or sexual intercourse

Abstinence pledges are commitments made by people, often though not always teenagers and young adults, to practice abstinence, usually in the case of practicing teetotalism with respect to abstaining from alcohol and other drugs, or chastity, with respect to abstaining from sexual intercourse until marriage; in the case of sexual abstinence, they are sometimes also known as purity pledges or virginity pledges. They are most common in the United States among Catholic and Evangelical Christian denominations, while others are nonsectarian.

Brahmacharya is a concept within Indian religions that literally means to stay in conduct within one's own Self. In Yoga, Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism it generally refers to a lifestyle characterized by sexual continence or complete abstinence.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Premarital sex</span> Sexual activity before marriage

Premarital sex is sexual activity which is practiced by people before they are married. Premarital sex is considered a sin by a number of religions and also considered a moral issue which is taboo in many cultures. Since the Sexual Revolution of the 1960s, it has become accepted by certain liberal movements, especially in Western countries. A 2014 Pew study on global morality found that premarital sex was considered particularly unacceptable in "Muslim Majority Countries", such as Malaysia, Jordan, Pakistan, and Egypt, each having over 90% disapproval, while people in Western European countries were the most accepting, with Spain, Germany, and France expressing less than 10% disapproval.

Antisexualism is opposition or hostility towards sexual behavior and sexuality.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Purity ring</span> Ring worn to signal chastity

Purity rings are rings worn as a sign of chastity. Since the 1990s, in the United States, Christian organizations, especially Catholic and evangelical Christian groups, promoting virginity pledges and virginity before marriage, like True Love Waits and Silver Ring Thing, used the purity ring as a symbol of commitment. Wearing a purity ring is typically accompanied by a religious vow to practice abstinence until marriage. Chastity rings are part of the abstinence-only sex education movement and are intended to act as a physical reminder of their chastity vow.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Abstinence-only sex education</span> Form of sex education

Abstinence-only sex education is a form of sex education that teaches not having sex outside of marriage. It often excludes other types of sexual and reproductive health education, such as birth control and safe sex. Comprehensive sex education, by contrast, covers the use of birth control and sexual abstinence.

Among the world's religions, views on masturbation vary widely. Some religions view it as a spiritually detrimental practice, some see it as not spiritually detrimental and others take a situational view. Among these latter religions, some view masturbation as allowable if used as a means towards sexual self-control, or as part of healthy self-exploration, but disallow it if it is done with motives they consider to be wrong, or as an addiction. For example, Christian denominations have different views on masturbation. Today, Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and some Protestant Christians consider masturbation to be a sin. Many Protestant churches in Northern and Western Europe and some Protestant churches in Northern America and in Australia/New Zealand see masturbation as not a sin.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Non-penetrative sex</span> Sexual activity that usually does not include sexual penetration

Non-penetrative sex or outercourse is sexual activity that usually does not include sexual penetration. It generally excludes the penetrative aspects of vaginal, anal, or oral sexual activity, but includes various forms of sexual and non-sexual activity, such as frottage, mutual masturbation, kissing, or cuddling. Some forms of non-penetrative sex, particularly when termed outercourse, include penetrative aspects, such as penetration that may result from forms of fingering or oral sex.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Catholic theology of sexuality</span>

Catholic theology of sexuality, like Catholic theology in general, is drawn from natural law, canonical scripture, divine revelation, and sacred tradition, as interpreted authoritatively by the magisterium of the Catholic Church. Sexual morality evaluates sexual behavior according to standards laid out by Catholic moral theology, and often provides general principles by which Catholics can evaluate whether specific actions meet these standards.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sex and gender roles in the Catholic Church</span>

Sex and gender roles in the Roman Catholic Church have been the subject of both intrigue and controversy throughout the Church's history. The cultural influence of the Catholic Church has been vast, particularly upon Western society. Christian concepts, introduced into evangelized societies worldwide by the Church, had a significant impact on established cultural views of sex and gender roles. Human sacrifice, slavery, infanticide and polygamy practiced by cultures such as those of the Roman Empire, Europe, Latin America and parts of Africa came to an end through Church evangelization efforts. Historians note that Catholic missionaries, popes and religious were among the leaders in campaigns against slavery, an institution that has existed in almost every culture and often included sexual slavery of women. Christianity affected the status of women in evangelized cultures like the Roman Empire by condemning infanticide, divorce, incest, polygamy and marital infidelity of both men and women. Some critics say the Church and teachings by St. Paul, the Church Fathers, and scholastic theologians perpetuated a notion that female inferiority was divinely ordained, while current Church teaching considers women and men to be equal, different, and complementary.

Sex education in the United States is taught in two main forms: comprehensive sex education and abstinence-only as part of the Adolescent Family Life Act, or AFLA. Comprehensive sex education is also called abstinence-based, abstinence-plus, abstinence-plus-risk-reduction, and sexual risk reduction sex education. This approach covers abstinence as a choice option, but also informs adolescents about human sexuality, age of consent and the availability of contraception and techniques to avoid contraction of sexually transmitted infections. Every state within the U.S. has a mandated AIDS Education Program.

Sexuality in the Philippines encompasses sexual behavior, sexual practices, and sexual activities exhibited by men and women of the Philippines past and the present. It covers courtship strategies for attracting partners for physical and emotional intimacy, sexual contact, sexual reproduction, building a family, and other forms of individual interactions or interpersonal relationships, as set and dictated by their culture and tradition, religion, beliefs, values and moral convictions, psychology, foreign influences, and other related factors.

Jewish traditions across different eras and regions devote considerable attention to sexuality. Sexuality is the subject of many narratives and laws in the Tanakh and rabbinic literature.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Fornication</span> Consensual sexual intercourse while not married

Fornication is generally consensual sexual intercourse between two people not married to each other. When one or more of the partners having consensual sexual intercourse is married to another person, it is called adultery. Nonetheless, John Calvin viewed adultery to be any sexual act that is outside the divine model for sexual intercourse, which includes fornication.

Purity culture is a subculture within Christianity which emphasizes subjective individual "purity," generally associated with female chastity.


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Further reading