Letters of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedānta Swami Prabhupāda
20 September, 1968
My Dear Satsvarupa,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your two letters dated 8 and 17, 1968, and I am so happy to learn that you are proud of being husband of Jadurani. Yes, you should be proud of having a nice wife like that. And I have handed over my daughter unto you, because I knew it that you will be the perfect boy to take care of her. Recently she was deteriorating in her health, so I was very much anxious about her, therefore, I decided to give her in your charge. Of course, even when you were not married, you were taking care of her always, but when the relationship is there as husband and wife, there is the question of responsibility. So I wanted you to take that responsibility. Anyway, everyone in our society thinks that your combination is very much appropriate. So be happy with your nice wife and take care of her properly.
In your letter of the 17th instant, you have very frankly inquired from me about householder life, especially in the matter of sex relationship. A sannyasi is not supposed to be asked about anything sexual. But still, because you are so much dependent on my instruction, so I must give you information as far as possible. Married life is not for sex indulgence. The principle of marriage is on the background of getting good children. So the householder is allowed to have sex life once in a month, just after the menstrual period. The menstrual period prolongs at least for 5 days, so after this 5 days, one can have sex life provided he desires to get a child. And as soon as the wife is pregnant, no more sex life, until the child is born and is grown up at least for 6 months. After that, one may have sex life on the same principle. If one does not want more than one or two children, he should voluntarily stop sex life. But one should not strictly use any contraceptive method and at the same time indulge in sex life. That is very much sinful. If the husband and wife can voluntarily restrain by powerful advancement of Krishna Consciousness. That is the best method. It is not necessary that because one has got wife, therefore you must have sex life. The whole scheme is to avoid sex life as far as possible. And if one can avoid it completely then it is a great victory for him. Married life is a sort of license for sex life on condition of raising children. So you should try to understand these principles of married life and use your discretion. You should not imitate great personalities like Bhaktivinode Thakura, but you must follow His footprints. But it is not always possible to have the same success as great personalities like Bhaktivinode Thakura achieved. So in all circumstances you should try to follow the footprints of authorities but never to imitate them. Unless Jadurani develops a better health and strength, I do not advise her to become pregnant. I think you will understand the instruction as I have given and try to follow it as far as possible.
Our relationship is eternal. But if somebody lags behind, so in spite of our eternal relationship one may not meet other at the destination. Just like a flock of birds—although very intimately related, everyone of them has to fly in the sky by individual strength. If one is less strong, the other cannot keep him in the sky. That is the law of nature. So long everyone of us is strong in Krishna Consciousness, there is no doubt, you can fly in the spiritual sky and meet together without failure. Therefore, individual strength is most important. And that individual strength is achieved in the association of devotees also. So you can make your own judgment.
Anyway, please take care of your health, and I hope you are both well and happy.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
P.S. Tomorrow I am going to Seattle.