Essay - Hinduism Manusmriti in the Vedic Conception of the World, the...


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Hinduism

Manusmriti

In the Vedic conception of ***** world, the attributions of men and women inside ***** family ***** in the society differ to the greatest extent. According ***** the Laws of Manu, men have to respect ***** gods and various religious regulations. The wo*****'s main role however is to obey the male world: *****ir fathers in the young age, their husbands once they are given in***** marriage and even their sons when ***** have reached an old age.

Thus, the basic principle that guides the division between ***** male and the female world is independence: in ***** Vedic world, the woman is not allowed to act independently. The text ***** the Laws of Manu emphasizes this idea over and over. Thus, it is imperatively stated that any ***** ***** any age must obey her husb***** and the other men around her. She is forbidden thus to act independently, ***** only in society but ***** ***** own house as well: "147. By a girl, by a young woman, or ***** by an aged one, nothing must be done independently, even in her own house."

148. In childhood a female ***** be subject to ***** father, in youth to her **********, when her lord is dead ***** ***** sons; a woman must never be *****dependent." The woman ***** made to obey only, as long as she lives, according to the Vedic tradition: "151. Him to whom her father may give her, or her brot***** with the father's permission, she shall obey as long as he *****, and when he is dead, she must not insult (his memory)." It must be noted ***** that the Laws of Manu were ***** as a guide on proper c*****duct and the duties of every individual according to ***** social class ***** they belonged to. The idea of ***** hierarchy is therefore a central concept ***** Hinduism, and it pervades all the ***** teachings. As such, it does not come as a surprise that the wo***** as ***** are inscribed in a certain social category ***** is considered to be inferior to that of men. The condition ***** the woman is obviously degrading in the ancient *****dian society. *****, she is never honored in any way for her own qualities or virtues, but only if she knows how ***** o*****y ***** please her husband in all his wi*****s. Moreover, the wife must obey her husband even when the latter is nei*****r virtuous, nor faithful to her and ***** children: "154. Though destitute of virtue, or seeking pleasure (elsewhere), or devoid of good qualities, (yet) a husband must be constantly worshipped as a god by a ***** wife." The justification that the laws offer for th***** unjust position attributed to women is that the ***** are naturally inclined to be heartless and unfaithful to their *****: "15. Through their passion for men, through ***** mutable temper, ***** their natural heartlessness, they become disl*****al towards their husbands, ***** carefully they may be guarded in this (world)." The *****feriority

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