What Are the Rights of Women in Hinduism?

What Are the Rights of Women in Hinduism

📖Valmiki Ramayana – Ayodhya Kanda – Sarga 24 Verse 20 ” Rama spoke thus these words bemoaningly to her, who was weeping= “as long as a woman is alive ,her husband is god and master to her.

📖Shiva Purana 54:25
If a women wants holy water she shall drink the same with which her husband’s feet have been washed. All holy rivers are present in that water.

  • If a wife wishes to obtain holy water, she must wash her husband’s feet and drink the water.

?Manusmriti Verse 9.3
The father guards her during virginity, the husband guards her in youth, the sons guard her in old age; the woman is never fit for independence.

  • They quote the following:— Their father protects them in childhood, their husband protects them in youth, and their sons protect them in old age; a woman is never lit for independence.

📖Garuda Purana 1.115.62-63
One shall not reside in a land where there is no leader or where there are many leaders or where the leadership is vested in a woman or in a child, The father protects her in childhood, the husband in youth and the son in old age. A woman is not to be allowed to stay independently.

📖Rig Veda 8.33.19
Cast your eyes downwards, not upwards; keep your feet close together; let not (men)behold your ankles, for from having been a brahmā you have become a Female.

?Manusmriti Verse 8.299
The wife, the son, the slave, the servant and the uterine brother shall be beaten with a rope or a split bamboo, when they have committed a fault.

📖Garuda Purana 1.109.31
Wicked persons, artisans, slaves, defiled ones, drums and women are softened by being beaten; they do not deserve gentle handling.

?Shiva Purana 54:20 | 54:16
A chaste lady shall take food only after her husband has taken it, if he stands, the woman too shall remain standing, A chaste lady shall never mention her husband’s name. If the husband scolds or rebukes her she shall not abuse him in return. Even when beaten by him she shall remain glad and say “I may even be killed, O lord. Be kind to me, When called by him she shall leave the work she is engaged in and approach him immediately. With palms joined in reverence and love she shall bow to him and say as follows.

📖The Shiva Purana 54: 50-51
What father gives is limited, what brother gives is limited and what the son gives is also limited. A chaste lady shall worship her husband who gives what has no limit, To a wife the husband is god, preceptor, virtue, holy centre and sacred rite. She should cast off everything and adore him alone.

📖Skanda Purana 3.7.37-38
If a woman transgresses the injunction of her husband and performs holy rites, fasts and other observances, she takes away the longevity of her husband. After her death, she falls into a hell, A hot-tempered woman who, when addressed, gives rude reply, is reborn as a bitch in a village or as a vixen in a desolate forest.

📖Mahabharata 13.40
O son of Kunti, women were all virtuous. Those, however, that sprang from this creation by Brahman with the aid of an illusion became sinful. The grandsire bestowed upon them the desire of enjoyment, all kinds of carnal pleasure. Tempted by the desire of enjoyment, they began to pursue persons of the other sex. The puissant lord of the deities created Wrath as the companion of Lust. Women have no especial acts prescribed for them. Even this is the ordinance that was laid down. The Shruti declares that women are endued with senses the most powerful, that they have no scriptures to follow, and that they are living lies. Beds and seats and ornaments and food and drink and the absence of all that is respectable and righteous, indulgence in disagreeable words, and love of sexual companionship,–these were bestowed by Brahman upon women. Men are quite unable to restrain them within bounds.

📖Garuda Purana 1:109-37
O Saunaka, it is true, definitely true that the vaginal passage of a woman begins to secrete profusely on seeing a well dressed man whether a brother or a son.

📖Manusmriti Verse 2.213-14
It is the very nature of women to corrupt men. It is for this reason that the wise are never unguarded regarding women.— In this world women are capable op leading astray the ignorant, as well as the learned, who becomes a servile follower of desire and passion.

📖Garuda Puran 1.115.64
A barren woman shall be abandoned in the eighth year after marriage; a woman whose children die in infancy shall be abandoned in the ninth year; a woman who gives birth only to daughters shall be abandoned in the eleventh year and a woman who speaks unpleasant words shall be abandoned immediately.

📖Srimad Bhagavatam 3.31.40
The woman, created by the Lord, is the representation of maya, and one who associates with such maya by accepting services must certainly know that this is the way of death, just like a blind well covered with grass.

  • Maya means illusion, deceit and fraud. Maharishi Manu writes that after creating women god blessed them with the boon of dishonesty, malice, misconduct etc. ?

📖Manu Smriti 9.17
Manu assigned to women sleep, sitting, ornament, lust, anger, dishonesty, malice and bad conduct.

📖Mahabharata 13.19
When human beings are such, and when women in particular have been declared in the ordinances to be false, how, O sire, can there be a union between the sexes for purposes of practising all duties together? In the very Vedas one may read that women are false.

📖Valmiki Ramayana, Aranya Kanda, Sarga 45.29-31 “I do not venture to reply you Maithili, as you are like a deity to me. Women using words that are in a class by themselves is not at all surprising. This sort of bringing stilted words into play is the nature of women and it is obvious in the world. Women by their nature are unbound by the etiquette of decency, whimsical, cantankerous and they tend to become the artificers of vicissitudes, and oh, Vaidehi, the daughter of Janaka, indeed unbearable are this kind of words that are much the same as burnt iron arrows thrust in between my two ears.

📖Manu Smriti 8.77
A single man, free from covetousness, may be a witness, but not many women, even though pure,—because the understanding of women is not steady,—nor other men who are tainted with defects.

  • According to this verse the testimony of women is not considered valid at all.

📖Shiv Puran Section 2.3 – Rudra-samhita 3: Parvati-khanda Chapter 54 Verses 51-56 To a wife the husband is god, preceptor, virtue, holy centre and sacred rite. She should cast off everything and adore him alone. She who forsakes her husband and secretly violates her fidelity is born as a she-owl of cruel nature wasting its days in the hollow of a tree, If she desires to beat her husband in retaliation, she becomes a tiger or a wild cat. She who ogles at another man becomes squint-eyed, She who partakes of sweet dish denying the same to her husband becomes a pig in the village or a wild goat eating its own dung, She who addresses her husband in singular becomes dumb. She who is jealous of a co-wife becomes ill-fated in matrimony again and again, She who casts glance on another person hiding it from her husband becomes one-eyed, twisted-faced or ugly.

📖Shiv Puran Book 3 – Brahma-khanda Section 2 – Dharmaranya-khanda Chapter 7 Verse 37 If a woman transgresses the injunction of her husband and performs holy rites, fasts and other observances, she takes away the longevity of her husband. After her death, she falls into a hell.

Women made for men who are childbearing Machines

📖Manu Smriti 9.96
Women were created for the purpose of child-bearing, and men for the furfose of procreation. hence it is that Religious Rites have been ordained in the Veda as common between the man and his wife.

📖Skanda Puran Book 5 Section 3 Chapter 103 Verse 9-16 It is cited by expounders of the Vedas that a woman is one who gives sexual pleasure and a son.

📖Mahabharata Book 5: Udyoga Parva, Chapter 39 Verse 67The fruits of women are the pleasures of intercourse and offspring –

Women do not have the right to Study the Vedas

📖Manu Smriti Verse 9:18
For women there is no dealing with the sacred texts; such is the rule of law; the fact is that, being destitute of organs and devoid of sacred texts, women are ‘false’

📖Brahma Puran 64:19
In regard to the people of the first three castes the rite of holy bath and the repetition of Mantras is in the manner mentioned in the Vedas. The utterance of the Vedic passage is to be avoided by women as well as Sudras.

Duty of a Wife in Hinduism 

📖Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.11.26-27
A chaste woman must dress nicely and decorate herself with golden ornaments for the pleasure of her husband. Always wearing clean and attractive garments, she should sweep and clean the household with water and other liquids so that the entire house is always pure and clean. She should collect the household paraphernalia and keep the house always aromatic with incense and flowers and must be ready to execute the desires of her husband. Being modest and truthful, controlling her senses, and speaking in sweet words, a chaste woman should engage in the service of her husband with love, according to time and circumstances.

📖Manusmriti Verse 5.152 
Be he ill-mannered or of licentious habits or destitute of good qualities,—the husband should always be attended upon like a god by the true wive.

📖Devi Bhagavatam 6.18.7-24
The eternal Dharma of women is to serve their husbands; whether the husband be a saint or a sinner, the woman, desirous of her welfare, should serve her husband in every way.

📖Devi Bhagavatam 3.19.11
The women are able to attain heaven and emancipation, if they serve their husbands.

📖Manu Smriti 5.155-156
Well might she macerate her body by means of pure flowers, roots and fruits; but she should not even mention the name of another man, after her husband is dead, Till her death, she should remain patient, self-controlled and chaste,—seeking that most excellent merit that accrues to women having a single husband.

📖Garuda Purana 1.95.24-26
The highest duty of a woman is to carry out the behests of her husband. Sixteen nights subsequent to the month menstrual flow are the nights of rut for women. The husband shall restrain himself during the parvan (full moon and new moon days), when the stars Magha and Mula are ascendant and on the first four nights. Thereafter, on even nights, he will be able to beget a healthy son of auspicious traits. If the woman is in a mood to receive him on any night he should satisfy her remembering that lust in women is terrible.

📖Mahabharata 13.59
As women have one eternal duty, in this world, viz., dependence upon and obedient service to their husbands, and as such duty constitutes their only end, even so is the service to Brahmanas Our eternal duty and end.

📖Manu Smriti 5:154-156
The good wife, desirous of reaching her husband’s regions, should never do anything that m ay be disagreeable to her husband, alive or dead.

  • Commentary : What is meant by ‘disagreeable’ here is that ‘freedom of life’ which has been forbidden for women and this the good wife should avoid.

📖Skanda Puran Book 3 Brahma Khanda Section 2 Dharmaranya Khanda Chapter 7 Verses 41-42 In the vicinity of elders, she should not speak loudly or call others in a loud voice. An evil-minded woman who abandons her husband and goes to a secret place, is reborn as a ruthless female owl always lying ensconced in the hollow of a tree.

📖Skanda Puran Book 2 Section 4 Chapter 4 Verses 74 Even if the husband is poor, fallen, foolish or wretched, he is the refuge unto his wife. By abandoning him a woman falls into hell.

📖Devi Bhagavatam 9.35.1-44
If any woman, being very furious with anger, chastises and uses harsh words to her husband, she goes to Ulkamukha Kunda for as many years as there are hairs on his body. My servants put fiery meteors or torches in her mouth and beat on her head. At the end of the term, she becomes a human being but she has to bear the torments of widowhood for seven births. Then she is again born as diseased; when at last she gets herself freed. The Brahmaṇa woman, enjoyed by a Sudra, goes to the terrible dark Andhakupa hell, where she remains, day and night, immersed in the impure water and eats that for fourteen Indra’s life periods. Her pains are unbounded and My messengers beat her severely and incessantly.

Women are sex maniac

📖Skanda Puran Book 5 – Avantya khanda Section 3 – Reva-khanda Chapter 121 Verses 6-9 Ordinarily sexual appetite is very strong in women. Especially during menses, they are afflicted all the more by the arrows of Kama. Shunned or neglected by their husbands, women naturally think about paramours.

  • Paramoursa meaning : person that somebody is having a romantic or sexual relationship with.

📖Mahabharata 13.19
Verily, women are exceedingly fond of sexual congress. Among a thousand women, or, perhaps, among hundreds of thousands, sometimes only one may be found that is devoted to her husband. When under the influence of desire, they care not for family or father or mother or brother or husband or sons or husband’s brother (but pursue the way that desire points out). Verily, in pursuit of what they consider happiness, they destroy the family (to which they belong by birth or marriage) even as many queenly rivers eat away the banks that contain them. The Creator himself had said this, quickly marking the faults of women.

📖Padma Puran Section 2 Bhumi Khanda Chapter 53 Verses 11b20
O lord of gods, the vulva, and also the tips of the breasts of women, throb. They do not have patience. O lord of gods, I shall undoubtedly ruin Sukalā.

📖Shiv Puran Section 5 – Uma Samhita Chapter 24 Verse 31
On seeing a man fresh and clean from his bath with his body perfumed with sweet scents, the vaginal passage of women begins to exude like water dripping from a leather bag.

Women cannot choose husband by themselves

📖Devi Bhagavata Puran Book 6 Chapter 22 Verses 31-36
The girl must accept him to whom the father betrothes. The girl is under every circumstances dependent. Never do they get any independence.

📖Manusmriti Verse 149-151
Him to whom her father may give her,—or her brother with the father’s permission,—she shall attend upon as long as he lives, and shall not disregard him when he is dead.

Women devoid of intellect

📖Devi Bhagavatam 9.38.1-6
O Bhagavan! The woman kind has been created by the Creator as devoid of any Tattvajñâna or true knowledge.

📖Rig Veda 8.33.17
Verily Indra said that the mind of a woman is not to be controlled, he declared also that her intellect wassmall.

Proud wife should be punished

📖Manusmriti 8.371
If a woman, proud of relations and her qualities, passes over her husband, the king shall have her devoured by dogs in a place frequented by many.

Widow Should Marry another husband or die with Husband in the same Buring fire

📖Garuda Purana 1.107.28-29
If the husband is untraceable, dead, or has renounced the world, is impotent or degraded – in these cases of emergency a woman can remarry, A wife who dies in the company of her husband [sati] shall remain in heaven as many years as there are hairs on his person.

Related : Child marriage in Hinduism – Skanda Purana & Manusmriti

  1. Reference Valmiki Ramayana – Ayodhya Kanda – Sarga 24 Verse 20
  2. Reference Shiva Purana 54:25 
  3. Reference Manusmriti Verse 9.3 
  4. Reference Garuda Purana 1.115.62-63
  5. Reference Rig Veda 8.33.19
  6. Reference Manusmriti Verse 8.299
  7. Reference Garuda Purana 1.109.31
  8. Reference Shiva Purana 54:20 | 54:16
  9. Reference The Shiva Purana 54: 50-51
  10. Reference Skanda Purana 3.7.37-38
  11. Reference Mahabharata 13.40
  12. Reference Garuda Purana 1:109-37
  13. Reference Manusmriti Verse 2.213-14
  14. Reference Garuda Puran 1.115.64
  15. Reference Srimad Bhagavatam 3.31.40
  16. Reference Manu Smriti 9.17 
  17. Reference Mahabharata 13.19
  18. Reference Manu Smriti 8.77
  19. Reference Shiv Puran Section 2.3 – Rudra-samhita 3: Parvati-khanda Chapter 54 Verses 51-56
  20. Reference Shiv Puran Book 3 – Brahma-khanda Section 2 – Dharmaranya-khanda Chapter 7 Verse 37
  21. Reference Manu Smriti 9.96 
  22. Reference  Skanda Puran Book 5 Section 3 Chapter 103 Verse 9-16
  23. Reference Mahabharata Book 5: Udyoga Parva, Chapter 39 Verse 67
  24. Reference Manu Smriti Verse 9:18
  25. Reference Brahma Puran 64:19
  26. Reference Srimad-B 7.11.26-27
  27. Reference Manusmriti Verse 5.152
  28. Reference Devi Bhagavatam 6.18.7-24
  29. Reference Manu Smriti 5.155-156
  30. Reference Garuda Purana 1.95.24-26
  31. Reference Devi Bhagavatam 3.19.11
  32. Reference Mahabharata 13.59
  33. Reference Manu Smriti 5:154-156
  34. Reference Skanda Puran Book 3 Brahma Khanda Section 2 Dharmaranya Khanda Chapter 7 Verses 41-42
  35. Reference Skanda Puran Book 2 Section 4 Chapter 4 Verses 74
  36. Reference Devi Bhagavatam 9.35.1-44
  37. Reference Skanda Puran Book 5 – Avantya khanda Section 3 – Reva-khanda Chapter 121 Verses 6-9
  38. Reference Mahabharata 13.19
  39. Reference Padma Puran Section 2 Bhumi Khanda Chapter 53 Verses 11b20
  40. Reference Shiv Puran Section 5 – Uma Samhita Chapter 24 Verse 31
  41. Reference Devi Bhagavata Puran Book 6 Chapter 22 Verses 31-36
  42. Reference Manusmriti Verse 149-151
  43. Reference : Devi Bhagavatam 9.38.1-6
  44. Reference : Rig Veda 8.33.17
  45. Reference. : Manusmriti 8.371
  46. Reference Garuda Purana 1.107.28-29