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Karezza, Ethics of Marriage, by Alice B. Stockham, [1903], at



All life in nature is perfect; man's life is no exception if he remove self-made limitations.

Karezza is strengthening and sustaining and to husband and wife, because it is virtually a union of the higher selves, from which naturally there can be no reaction. As the spiritual is developed, the physical is subordinated. Whatever contributes to soul growth enhances the power to live free from the domination of the body, and bodily sensations. Thus is secures harmonious physical conditions, and the spirit manifests or pictures itself through the flesh as a harmonious whole.

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Especially is it necessary for the wife to be freed from the usual dread of excessive and undesired child-bearing. Fear and anxious thought, far more than bacilli or bacteria, are productive of pain, disease and suffering. The terrors and dread of childbirth, and the horrors of undesired maternity, have been potent factors in causing the weakness and the suffering of women.

To know that childbirth is natural, and that under harmonious conditions it is not attended by suffering, removes a great curse from the lives of women. To know that the inherent desire for maternity is to be fulfilled under the best conditions and entirely at her own command, is a wonderful boon to woman.

If, on the other hand, women are resigned to conditions that they deem unavoidable, and patiently pay in frequent childbirths what they

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consider the penalty of their sex, they become little more than breeding animals. They are given no time for self-development and preparation for their obligations to the fast increasing family.

Instances are rare when women can maintain a high standard of health and strength and bear six or eight children in ten or twelve years, and at the same time perform the combined offices of nurse, cook, laundress, seamstress and governess. In drudgery they drag along through days and nights, with no outlook for the future save a recurrence of similar conditions.

Every woman owes it to herself to preserve the normal elasticity of health and strength, to become enduring for all the many obligations and activities of life, so to accord all her thinking and living that increase of years will not be attended by weakness and debility. Her maturer

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years, on the contrary, should be filled with increasing strength and power, veritably with the health and buoyancy of youth. The young "old lady" should become the regenerated "new woman," the glory and inspiration of the coming time. This may be consummated through the aid of Karezza.

In Karezza the husband also experiences conditions which preserve his health and natural, vital powers. Physicists have demonstrated with incontrovertible facts that it is eminently healthy to conserve the virile principle. The seminal secretion has a wonderful imminent value, and if retained is absorbed into the system and adds enormously to man's magnetic, mental and spiritual force. In ordinary married life this force is constantly being wasted. Other things being equal, the man who wisely conserves is in concentrated mental and physical power and effectiveness,

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like a Daniel and his companions. He builds and constructs, he is the organizer and executive head of industries, he is the orator and the inventor. He is the leader of great movements, because his power is drawn from an inexhaustible storage battery.

The testes may be considered analogous to the salivary and lachrymal glands, in which there is no fluid secreted except at the demand of their respective functions. The thought of food makes the mouth water for a short time only, while the presence of the food causes an abundant yield of saliva.

It is customary for physiologists to assume that the spermatic secretion is analogous to bile, which when once formed, must be expelled. But substitute the word tears for bile, and you put before the mind an idea altogether different. Tears, as falling drops, are not essential to life

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and health. A man may be in perfect health and not cry once in five or even fifty years. The lachrymal fluid is ever present, but in such small quantities that it is unnoticed. Where are tears while they remain unshed? They are ever ready, waiting to spring forth when there is an adequate cause, but they do not accumulate and distress the man because they are not shed daily, weekly or monthly. The component elements of the tears are prepared in the system, they are on hand, passing through the circulation, ready to mix and flow whenever they are needed; but if they mix, accumulate and flow without adequate cause, there is a disease of the lachrymal glands. While there are no exact analogues in the body, yet the tears and the spermatic fluids are much more closely analogous in their normal manner of secretion and use than are the bile and the semen. Neither flow of tears nor of

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semen is essential to life or health. Both are largely under the control of the imagination, the emotions, and the will; and the flow of either is liable to be arrested in a moment by sudden mental action.

It is as degrading for men and boys to allow a seminal emission without rational and proper cause, as it is unmanly for them to sheer tears frequently or on trivial occasions. If they could know, moreover, that an uncalled for emission is a destructive waste of life material, perhaps the formation of habits of masturbation, promiscuous intercourse and marital profligacy, with all their disastrous consequences, might be largely prevented.

The mammary gland is an apt illustration of the law of demand and supply. In its anatomical construction and physiological function is it not analogous to the producing gland of the male?

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No one has ever hinted that it is essential for health that the natural lacteal fluid of the mammary gland must be continually or frequently secreted and expelled. It is not considered a "physical necessity" or a demand of nature. Indeed, the contrary opinion prevails, that an abundant flow of milk is derogative to healthful conditions.

Milk flows in answer to the demand of a newborn infant, and should it come at any other time than when thus demanded, it is considered a perversion of nature and an unnecessary drain upon the system. May it not prove that the unnecessary secretion and expulsion of the semen is as great a perversion of nature?

May it not also prove that erectile tissue in action is not a positive evidence of secretion in the gland?

Physiology alone proves that the practice of

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[paragraph continues] Karezza imparts health and strength to man. When it is known that conservation is not so much the result of retained secretions as the transmutation and transformation of vital forces, - the innermost life of man, then students will cease testing the fluids with chemicals, and the bodily tissue with microscope and scalpel.

Although woman has not the semen to conserve, yet equally with man she has the thrilling potency of passion, that when well directed, heals sensitive nerves, vitalizes the blood and restores tissue. In this deeper, truer union, the very heart of Karezza, woman as well as man prevents and cures disease. Karezza has a therapeutic value not equaled by any remedy of pharmacopia, or by any system of healing.

The natural woman knows that virtue is not sexual repression but rather expression; that coldness, inertness, and want of feeling are due

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to condemnation of the life that is the center and creator of all life. She has been taught shame for the most sacred relations, and especially for the sign of the power that creates offspring, but she reverses this teaching. Is a plant ashamed to bud, bloom and bring forth fruit?

Women must bless the source of life; she must be loyal to her trust. She must know that sex life and sex expression are a natural heritage, God implanted. Wisely, thoughtfully should she seek conservation and appropriation of that which is the heart of vitality.

Men who are borne down with sorrow because their wives are nervous, feeble and irritable, have it in their own 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

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and endearment, the husband may develop a response in the wife through her love nature, which thrills every fiber into action and radiates tonic to every nerve.

Men with hearts full of love and wisdom will not be slow to accord this boon to wives whom they have pledged to love and protect, thus fulfilling the marriage sacrament.

In Karezza, creative energy is transmuted into the very life of the cell, from which is developed perfect structure and tissue. The impetus to health derived from Karezza is the right of every man and woman. It is co-operative building, love being the foundation, wisdom the designer and executor. This planning and building prophesy perpetual youth, and progeny surpassing all progenitors in strength and endurance.

Next: Chap. 5: Parenthood