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Celibacy Awareness Month – June 2023

Celibacy Awareness Month is observed in June every year. This annual observance across the country is to raise awareness about staying celibate, and voluntarily taking a vow of abstinence. National Celibacy Awareness Month aims to encourage people to consider the benefits of celibacy, until marriage or as a lifetime commitment.

While the primary reasons that people choose to be celibate are usually religious ones, people may vow to be abstinent for any number of personal reasons. These reasons range from physical and mental health to personal and professional development, and other activities that require a great deal of focus.

History of Celibacy Awareness Month

Celibacy Awareness Month is observed throughout the country in June. This month is observed every year to share information and raise awareness about celibacy among people across the country. In modern societies, celibacy of all kinds is typically associated with religious reasons, although, in actuality, the reasons may vary.

Historically, celibacy, which is a decision people take to be voluntarily unmarried or abstain from sexual activity, has been associated with religion and religious vows. A lot of cultures and religions across the world value celibacy as an essential behavior for religious and spiritual development.

Religions like Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Christianity place a lot of value on celibacy as a lifelong vow for monks, nuns, and other religious leaders. Societies built on the religious values and principles of these and other religions, such as Judaism and Islam, also value celibacy until marriage for young people. Such societies function by conferring value to sexuality and sexual expression, and expecting sexual expression to be reserved for marriage and a single, lifelong partner.

There is no specific commandment in Christianity that recommends chastity and abstinence from sex for disciples of Christ. However, Paul the Apostle discussed chastity and its advantages. In addition, the reverence of Christ’s mother, the Virgin Mary, drives the understanding of sexual abstinence and virginity being the ideal state for the disciple of God.
Apart from religious reasons, people may choose to be celibate in order to be more thoughtful about their sexual experiences or to shift their focus onto alternate priorities like personal or professional development.

Celibacy Awareness Month timeline

570 B.C.
Pythagoras Espouses Celibacy

Philosopher Pythagoras goes against common Greek values of marriage and espouses a lifestyle of restraint and abstinence.

65 A.D.
Paul the Apostle Preaches Abstinence

Paul the Apostle is among the disciples of Christ who sees celibacy as something reserved for marriage, and preaches celibacy.

270 A.D.
The Desert Fathers is Founded

Anthony the Great founds the Desert Fathers who go on to influence the development of Christian ideas on celibacy.

2014
The Code of Ethics is Amended

The American Association of Christian Counselors amends its code of ethics to encourage homosexual believers to stay celibate rather than pursue conversion therapy.

Celibacy Awareness Month FAQs

Are people who choose celibacy virgins?

People who take vows of celibacy may or may not be virgins.

How common is celibacy in marriage?

About 15% to 20% of couples enjoy celibate marriages.

Is it healthy to be celibate?

While there are no confirmed studies, celibacy doesn’t harm anyone’s health.

How to Observe Celibacy Awareness Month

  1. Practice abstinence

    A great way to celebrate and understand celibacy is to try it for yourself. Take this month to practice abstinence and experience its benefits.

  2. Talk about celibacy

    Celibacy and abstinence are often misunderstood among people. Take the time to talk about abstinence this month and the reasons why people might choose it.

  3. Encourage people who are considering it

    If you know people who are considering celibacy but are unsure, take the time to counsel and support their decision. Offer information and a support system so they can stick to their choice.

5 Facts About Celibacy

  1. It feels like a relief to people

    A lot of people who attempt celibacy often find that it’s a relief to not have to force themselves to go through the motions.

  2. It means different things to different people

    Celibacy is a personal decision and varies from person to person, with some people choosing to avoid all sexual activity, while others choose to limit their activities in some way.

  3. It can lead to increased focus

    A lot of people find that they’re able to focus better at work or in school when they’re not always thinking about sex.

  4. It promotes self-esteem

    When it’s a voluntary choice, celibacy leads to great self-esteem and self-care.

  5. It can make sex more enjoyable

    A short period of celibacy often makes sex more enjoyable for people for whom the act had become rote.

Why Celibacy Awareness Month is Important

  1. We want to become more mindful

    We want to be more conscious of our sexual activity. We think this month is a great way to become more mindful about our sex lives.

  2. We want to focus on work

    We want the opportunity to think about our professional lives and improve our own lives. We think that this is a great way to remove distractions from our lives.

  3. We want to feel empowered

    We think that it’s become too easy to lose ourselves in mindless sexual activity. We want to feel empowered and choose our partners with care.

Celibacy Awareness Month dates

YearDateDay
2023June 1Thursday
2024June 1Saturday
2025June 1Sunday
2026June 1Monday
2027June 1Tuesday
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