Coitus reservatus

Coitus reservatus

Coitus reservatus (coitus, "sexual intercourse, union" + reservatus, "reserved, saved") . , is commonly thought of as a form of sexual intercourse in which the man does not attempt to ejaculate within his partner, but instead attempts to remain at the plateau phase of intercourse for as long as possible avoiding the orgasm and seminal emission (however, as in prepuberty, note that a man may indeed achieve orgasm without any seminal emission, known as a dry orgasm). Another term used for this kind of relationhips is the word karezza, generally believed to be derived from the Italian word carézza meaning "caress"; however, Alan W. Watts believes it is a Persian word. The term "karezza" was coined by the physician Alice Bunker Stockham and is akin to maithuna in Buddhist Tantra and Sahaja in Hindu Yoga.

Dr. Stockham's contribution

Importantly, Dr. Stockham's contribution was to apply this same philosophy to women as much as to men. It may be construed as a form of birth control but it is really a way of prolonging sexual pleasure to the point of achieving mystical ecstasis, as explained by J. William Lloyd, a practitioner of Karezza, whose own experience of Cosmic Consciousness appears in the magnum opus Cosmic Consciousness by the American psychiatrist Richard M. Bucke M. D., an intimate friend of the American poet Walt Whitman. In fact, the goal of this practice is to enable the man to actually separate orgasm from ejaculation, being able to experience one without the other.


Presumably, the principles of karezza also apply to masturbation, whereby a man attempts to delay his ejaculation as long as possible to prolong pleasure in a process known as "orgasmic brinkmanship" or "edging." However, for Karezza to be successful requires the maturity of a couple. This precludes masturbation. Its cornerstone is a couple who is willing to undergo the discipline of coitus sine ejaculatio seminis. The primary purpose of karezza is the maintenance, and indeed, intensification of desire and enjoyment of sexual pleasure within the context of long-term relationships. According to Stockham, it takes from two weeks to a month for the body to recover from ejaculation ..."Unless procreation is desired, let the final propagative orgasm be entirely avoided". If ejaculation is experienced more frequently, the effect is to 'drain the basin' before it has been replenished. This, in turn, induces feelings of irritation and rejection of the lover, as the body seeks to prevent further ejaculation. However, and arguably especially in modern Western culture where 'more is better', people often pursue orgasms, and therefore, ejaculation as a way of trying to overcome those feelings, thus compounding the problem. The result is that over time (reportedly within two to four years), the 'honeymoon of desire' is over, leading to substantial change in the nature of the relationship. Stockham's advocacy was that this same 'honeymoon period' could be maintained in perpetuity by limiting the frequency of ejaculation or preferably avoiding it entirely. Stockham writes: "Man, too, expresses creative life in many ways besides that of parenthood". Once lovemaking is no longer undertaken as a means to orgasm, Stockham suggested, the nature and purpose of lovemaking changes dramatically, being focused on communication and physical communion. She writes, "The time and frequency of Karezza can be governed by no certain law. Experience, however, has proven that is far more satisfactory to have at least an interval of two to four weeks, and may find that even three or four months afford greater impetus to power and growth as well as more personal satisfaction; during the interval the thousand and one lover-like attentions give reciprocal delight, and are an anticipating prophecy of the ultimate union.

Coitus reservatus

There is a slight difference between Karezza and coitus reservatus. Ideally, karezza is best suited for married couples. Coitus reservatus, on the other hand, is suited for practically anyone but ideally, for consenting adults; in this practice, unlike karezza's the woman can and does enjoy a prolongued orgasm while the man is able to demonstrate at will an unequalled mode of self-control.

There are some who believe there are negative effects to the practice as follows: coitus reservatus is not a reliable form of preventing a sexually transmitted infection, as the penis leaks pre-ejaculate, which may contain all of the same infectious viral particles and bacteria as the actual semen. Beyond that, it is also unreliable for contraception, even if ejaculation is successfully avoided, because pre-ejaculate may contain sperm. However, no studies have been found to show that sperm is present in the pre-ejaculate fluid.The method is also unreliable because of the difficulty of controlling ejaculation beyond the point of no return in over-reaching the orgasm. The couples should therefore exercise preventive control in how far they are willing to go. Another difficulty of this method as a form of birth-control is that if the man begins to orgasm (before ejaculation proper begins), the muscles can tense tightly in the lower body, such as legs and buttocks, causing the removal of the penis to be difficult. This could cause some ejaculate to enter his partner. Pregnancy could then result.

English novelist Aldous Huxley, in his last novel Island wrote that Maithuna, the Yoga of Love is... "the same as what Roman Catholicism means by coitus reservatus. Getting to the point by discussing coitus reservatus, Alan W. Watts in Nature, Man and Woman notes: "...I would like to see someone make a case for the idea that the Apostles really did hand down an inner tradition to the Church, and that through all these centuries the Church has managed to guard it from the public eye. If so, it has remained far more secret and "esoteric" than in any of the other great spiritual traditions of the world, so much so that its existence is highly doubtful... The Welsh writer Norman Lewis, in his celebrated account of life in Naples in 1944, claimed that San Rocco was the patron saint of coitus reservatus: "I recommended him to drink -- as the locals did -- marsala with the yolk of eggs stirred into it, and to wear a medal of San Rocco, patron of coitus reservatus, which could be had in any religious-supplies shop". On the other hand, one would expect someone like Pope Pius XII to stand firm against any form of sex act other than the one conducive to procreation in holy matrimony. He says, "... The precept is in full force today, as it was in the past, and so it will be in the future also, and always, because it is not a simple human whim, but the expression of a natural and divine law.

The famous psychologist Havelock Ellis writes: "Coitus Reservatus, - in which intercourse is maintained even for very long periods, during which the woman may have orgasm several times while the man succeeds in holding back orgasm, - so far from being injurious to the woman, is probably the form of coitus which gives her the maximum gratification and relief".

The Oneida Community, founded in the nineteenth century by John Humphrey Noyes experimented with coitus reservatus which was then called male continence in a religiously Christian communist environment. The experiment lasted for about a quarter of a century and then Noyes went on to create Oneida silverware and establish the Oneida Silver Co. that grew into Oneida Limited.

In his study of Leonardo da Vinci, Sigmund Freud writes: "Observation of daily life shows that most persons have the capacity to direct a very tangible part of their sexual motive powers to their professional or business activities. The sexual impulse is particularly suited to yield such contributions because it is endowed with the capacity of sublimation, i. e. it has the power to exchange its nearest aim for othes of higher value which are not sexual.


Stockham writes in Karezza, p. 22, "Karezza signifies 'to express affection in both words and action,' and while it fittingly denotes the union that is the outcome of deepest human affection, love's consummation, it is used technically throughout this work to designate a controlled sexual union". So that in practice, it is more than just self-control; it is actually mutual-control where the male helps the female and viceversa. This is a key to overcome many difficulties in trying to control sexual expression on an individual basis.

The Rosicrucians

The AMORC Rosicrucians declare openly that they do not engage in sexual practices of an occult nature. This has been so since their First Imperator H. Spencer Lewis, Ph. D. made it public knowledge. Their rival organization Fraternitas Rosae Crucis led by Dr. R. Swinburne Clymer engages in sexual practices for the sake of race regeneration. Dr. Clymer is completely opposed to the practice of Karezza or coitus reservatus and advocates instead a form of sex intercourse in which the couple experiences the orgasm at the same time: come together! Imperator Lewis declares the FUDOSI acknowledged AMORC as the genuine Rosicrucian representative in North America. However, the Secretary of the FUDOSI, a French Sexologist, heartily approves the practice of Karezza as an American import to establish harmony in the family as well as in the world by preventing the waste and misuse of sex energy. No man is a prophet in his native land; this time it would be a woman, Dr. Alice Stockham, to be taken to court and forced to give up teaching the practice of Karezza in the United States of America.

Dr. Arnold Krumm-Heller established the Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua (FRA) a Rosicrucian school in Germany with branches in South America having the following formula of sexual conduct: Immissio Membri Virile in Vaginae sine ejaculatio seminis. This he asserts is most conducive to the economic success and prosperity of the members.

Samael Aun Weor learned this formula and applied it in the context of The Perfect Matrimony.

See also


  • LLoyd, John William, The karezza method, or, Magnetation the art of connubial love, Health Research, 1964, ASIN B0007HUYDY
  • Stockham, Alice B, Karezza Ethics of Marriage, Kessinger Publishing, 2004 ISBN 1417939699
  • Von Urban, Rudolf, M. D., Sex Perfection and Marital Happiness, Dial Press, New York, 1955

In pop culture:


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