Question on the CCC's definition of masturbation?

2352 By masturbation is to be understood the deliberate stimulation of the genital organs in order to derive sexual pleasure.

Why does this definition specifically state “in order to derive sexual pleasure?” Does this imply that “masturbation” purely intended to release sexual tension is not sinful? :confused:

No. That too is *gravely *sinful.

CCC “The deliberate use of the sexual faculty, for whatever reason, outside of marriage is essentially contrary to its purpose.”

(note: sexual pleasure is rather tied up with any such an act regarding the sexual facility)


The whole “in order to derive sexual pleasure” part is meant to separate the definition of masturbation from things like touching your sexual organs for the means of washing them in the shower, or checking for testicular cancer, etc.

Hope that helps!

It is not as good of health technique as you think.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit