Asceticism is rigorous self-denial, particularly the rejection of the pleasures of the world. If you don't drink, smoke, eat sugar, see movies, use the internet, or have a cell phone, then you are already practicing a kind of asceticism.

Asceticism comes from the word ascetic, which comes from Greek roots meaning monk, and practice or exercise. Historically, Asceticism was a rigorous, laborious lifestyle, involving the denial of pleasure and rest as a way of expressing spiritual devotion. Now we use asceticism as a synonym for austerity.

Definitions of asceticism

n rigorous self-denial and active self-restraint

Type of:
self-control, self-denial, self-discipline
the act of denying yourself; controlling your impulses

n the trait of great self-denial (especially refraining from worldly pleasures)

austerity, nonindulgence
asceticism as a form of religious life; usually conducted in a community under a common rule and characterized by celibacy and poverty and obedience
monasticism characterized by solitude in which the social dimension of life is sacrificed to the primacy of religious experience
Type of:
self-denial, self-discipline
the trait of practicing self discipline

n the doctrine that through renunciation of worldly pleasures it is possible to achieve a high spiritual or intellectual state

Type of:
doctrine, ism, philosophical system, philosophy, school of thought
a belief (or system of beliefs) accepted as authoritative by some group or school

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