Hashchatat Zera Levatala

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  1. It is forbidden to waste seed and it is a very serious sin.[1]
  2. It is forbidden for a man to make himself erect intentionally or bring himself to inappropriate thoughts. If the thoughts come to him he should avert his attention to Torah thoughts.[2]
  3. It is forbidden for a man to sleep on his back or front so that he doesn't become erect.[3]
  4. It is forbidden for an unmarried man to hold his 'ever' when he is going to the bathroom.[4]
  5. It is permitted to wear underwear today.[5]


  1. It is noteworthy that it is possible to do teshuva for this sin. The greatest path for kapara for this sin is learning torah. For ways to achieve kapara for this sin see Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 151:7.[6]


  1. Niddah 13a, Shulchan Aruch EH 23:1
  2. Shulchan Aruch EH 23:2
  3. Shulchan Aruch EH 23:2
  4. Shulchan Aruch EH 23:3
  5. The Gemara Niddah 13b conclude that it is forbidden to wear michnasayim since they cause shichvat zera to be emitted. This is codified by the Rama EH 23:6 though he discusses theoretically how it might not apply today. The Pitchei Teshuva 23:4 quotes the Atzi Arazim that writes it is muter to wear an underwear which doesn't have a pocket which is fitted for the ever, which certainly could cause shichvat zera to come out. The Aruch Hashulchan 23:7 is also lenient remarking that it is obvious that people always wore underwear. Otzar Haposkim EH 23:20 quotes Ezer Mikodesh who is lenient with our underwear, but also cites Sefer Zichronot who is strict with tight underwear.
  6. Keter Rosh of Rav Chaim Volozhon fnt. 58 writes that learning Torah saves oneself from the punishments of this sin. Furthermore, those who teach that there's no way to do teshuva for this sin are themselves sinning in pushing people away from Torah.