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Fortune: Celibacy

A question upon which there is much difference of opinion in occult circles is that of celibacy. Some schools teach that it is essential to the higher occult work, and some do not. To explain the matter fully would only be suitable to those pledged by their initiation vows, for it concerns the deepest and most carefully guarded aspects of occultism.


...neither a sex life which is under tension from repression, nor one which is fed full to repletion, affords a satisfactory condition for practical occultism. In the one case the nervous tension will betray the operator on the astral, and in the other, there will be a lack of etheric force essential for any occult operation.

The problem is not a simple one to solve among the many inhibitions and conflicting interests of modern life, where it is more often a case of what one can do than of what one would do. The ideal is undoubtedly a mating in which husband and wife co-operate in the Great Work and bring to their mutual relationship an understanding of its occult significance.


All mystery schools, in all ages and races, except those given over to phallic rites and black magic, where such things have a use, unite in refusing admission to the hermaphrodite and the eunuch, or any one who is in any way sexually abnormal, whether by reason of homosexuality or frigidity.

The question of virginity is also a curious and complex one in occultism. The old books have much to say on the subject, the first requirement for many occult operations being a pure virgin or boy below the age of puberty. Occultly understood, only those are virgin of either sex, who have not known desire.

Excerpted from The Training and Work of an Initiate (1930) by Dion Fortune with permission of the Society of Inner Light and Red Wheel Weiser.