Limiting marital relations-A small limb that when satisfied becomes hungry

A small limb that when satisfied becomes hungry:

The Sages[1] state that “There is a small limb in a man that when he satiates it, it is hungry, and when he starves it, it is satiated.” Literally, this means that one who increases in marital relations causes himself to have an even greater lust for relations.[2] Additionally, this means that one who increases in the marital relations he releases his energy and causes himself to feel weak in his older years.[3] One who has relations by both night and day is considered to be over satiating himself.[4] Some[5] learn that the above saying of the Sages is only referring to forbidden relations; that forbidden relations never satisfy one’s lusts, while permitted relations, such as with one’s wife, does satisfy one’s lusts. This is due to another Talmudic statement that Hashem took the pleasure of Tashmish and handed it to the forbidden relations.[6] [Accordingly, it is proper not to have relations to often as doing so will satiate him and reduce the lust one has for his wife.]


[1] Sukkah 52b; Sanhedrin 107a

[2] Rashi in Sanhedrin ibid

[3] Rashi in Sukkah ibid

[4] Tosafus in Sukkah ibid based on Sanhedrin ibid

[5] Keli Yakar Vayeishev 39/6

[6] Sanhedrin 75a

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