A number of changes in Ghandi?s personal life soon impacted his growing celebrity. The first was his achievement of Brahmacharya, or the voluntary abstention from sexual relations. This was not an uncommon Hindu practice among men in their forties and fifties, who gradually cease sexual activity once they have had enough children to satisfy the demands of custom, family and caste, but Ghandi adopted the practice between 1901 and 1906, when he was in his thirties. He seems to have regarded it as part of his quest for selflessness and restraint in all aspects of life; in his writings, he suggests that as a young man he succumbed too easily to lust, and recounts how he failed to be with his father when he died because he was making live to his wife, a lapse of duty for which he never forgave himself. Whether or not Ghandi?s decision was based on pure principle, amateur psychologists have speculated exhaustively about alternative motives. Suffice it so say that from 1906 onward, with Kasturbai?s consent ( she was physically frail at this point, and may have welcomed his decision), Ghandi was almost entirely celibate.
At the same
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