Brahmacharya (; Sanskrit: ब्रह्मचर्य lit ‘pure conduct’) is a concept within Indian religions that literally means to stay in conduct within one’s own Self

In Yoga, Hinduism and Jainism it generally refers to a lifestyle characterized by sexual continence or complete abstinence

Brahmacharya is somewhat different from the English term “celibacy,” which merely means non-indulgence in sexual activity

Brahmacharya is when a person completely controls his body and mind (chitta) through ascetic means

In the Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist monastic traditions, brahmacharya implies, among other things, the mandatory renunciation of sex and marriage

It is considered necessary for a monk’s spiritual practice

Western notions of the religious life as practiced in monastic settings mirror these characteristics