In Yajurveda Samhita, we come across Ashvamedha ritual. In Shukla Yajurveda, Madhyandin Samhita section 23.18–32, the so-called obscene ritual of the chief Queen Mahishi copulating with dead horse is mentioned clearly in the commentaries of Uvvata and Mahidhara. In Kānvaśatpatha Brāhmana XV.5.2.4 to XV.5.2.11 especially in the 4th verse its written, 'The Male organ of horse is kept at the lap of the Queen. "May the vigorous male, layer of seed impregnate."'In the 6th verse it is written, 'The Adhvaryu then addresses the young lass- "Hello, hello, maiden that little she bird."- The young lass responds, "Adhvaryu, that little he-bird" and this is the "Yakāśko śkuntiketi " verse which Uvvata and Māhīdhara translate "she bird" and "he bird" as Clitoris and Penis respectively in his Madhyandin Samhita commentary. Is this ritual really present in the ritual or did Uvvata and Mahidhara tried to put their own interpretation which could be flawed?

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    Those verses are actually there in the Vedas. They are learned in gurukulas and vedapatshalas by orthodox vaidika brahmanas. There is really a sex act with the queen and horse in the ashwamedha ritual.
    – Ikshvaku
    Mar 13, 2021 at 12:12
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    It is a fertility rite. All ancient cultures had fertility rites like this. The horse represents virility and is imbued with the power of all the gods, and the chief queen would mock-copulate with the dead horse to increase the prosperity of the kingdom.
    – Ikshvaku
    Mar 13, 2021 at 12:18
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    "Not literal?" - no it's literal, it's a physical act, horse penis goes in queen's vagina. That act has symbolism behind it, and it represents virility being imbued into the kingdom. Thus, the kingdom prospers.
    – Ikshvaku
    Mar 13, 2021 at 12:21
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    Swami Vishwananda is a known downvoter. He has most downvotes to lowest upvotes ratio.
    – Ikshvaku
    Mar 13, 2021 at 12:22
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    Swami Vishwananda is an Advaitin and supporter of illusionary world theory. Your question makes it seem like the theory is contradicted by the Upanishads.
    – Ikshvaku
    Mar 13, 2021 at 12:25

2 Answers 2


Asvamedha sacrifice is described in Yajurveda. White Yajurveda Samhita (Vajasaneyi Samhita) 23.18-32 mentioned the Mantras of Asvamedha sacrifice. Mahidhara who is the traditional commentator of Yajurveda did explain these verses suggesting sexual intercourse. One may find it obscene, but one has to remember that Asvamedha sacrifice has a connection with ancient fertility rites. This is done for the Kingdom's prosperity. So the chief queen's sexual act with the dead horse signifies that.

The procedure is described in the associated Brahmana known as Satapatha Brahmana (Madhyandin branch). The detailed procedure described here also suggests sexual union. Thirteenth Kanda explains Asvamedha sacrifice. Here are the relevant quotes from the Satapatha Brahmana (Madhyandin branch).

Satapatha Brahmana

  1. Now the gods, when going upwards, did not know (the way to) the heavenly world, but the horse knew it: when they go upwards with the horse, it is in order to know (the way to) the heavenly world. 'A cloth, an upper cloth, and gold,' this is what they spread out for the horse: thereon they quiet (slay) it, as (is done) for no other victim; and thus they separate it from the other victims.
  1. When they quiet a victim they kill it. Whilst it is being quieted, he (the Adhvaryu) offers (three) oblations, with (Vāj. S. XXIII, 18), 'To the breath hail! to the off-breathing hail! to the through-breathing hail!' he thereby lays the vital airs into it, and thus offering is made by him with this victim as a living one.
  1. With, 'Ambā! Ambikā! Ambālikā! there is no one to lead me,'--he leads up the (four) wives: he thereby has called upon them (to come), and, indeed, also renders them sacrificially pure.
  1. With (Vāj. S. XXIII, 19), 'We call upon thee, the host-leader of (divine) hosts, O my true lord!' the wives walk round (the horse), and thus make amends to it for that (slaughtering): even thereby they (already) make amends to it; but, indeed, they also fan it. Thrice they walk round; for three (in number) are these worlds: by means of these worlds they fan it. Thrice again they walk round,--that amounts to six, for there are six seasons: by means of the seasons they fan it.
  1. But, indeed, the vital airs depart from those who perform the fanning at the sacrifice. Nine times they walk round; for there are nine vital airs: vital airs they thus put into their own selves, and the vital airs do not depart from them. 'I will urge the seed-layer, urge thou the seed-layer!' (the Mahiṣī says);--seed, doubtless, means offspring and cattle: offspring and cattle she thus secures for herself. [Vāj. S. XXIII, 20,] 'Let us stretch our feet,' thus in order to secure union. 'In heaven ye envelop yourselves' (the Adhvaryu says),--for that is, indeed, heaven where they immolate the victim: therefore he speaks thus.--'May the vigorous male, the layer of seed, lay seed!' she says in order to secure union. - Satapatha Brahmana, Madhyandin branch, Kanda 13, Adhyaya 2, Brahmana 8

Satapatha Brahmana translated by Julius Eggeling, series Sacred Books of the East Edited by F. Max Muller, Vol. XLIV

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    BS bro, BS. We don't need to justify every nonsense. Reject it as garbage. Aug 31, 2023 at 9:00

There is nothing vulgar.They will only seem vulgar to you if you read the wrong translation. People quote Shukla yajurveda Madhyandin Samhita 23:19-21 to prove it in Vedas, but they give false translation , but I will provide you with sanskrit verses with correct Translation in Hindi and English from which you can get the meaning

Yajur ved 23:19

ग॒णानां॑ त्वा ग॒णप॑तिꣳहवामहे प्रि॒याणां॑ त्वा प्रि॒यप॑तिꣳहवामहे निधी॒नां त्वा॑ निधि॒पति॑ꣳ हवामहे वसो मम। आहम॑जानि गर्भ॒धमा त्वम॑जासि गर्भ॒धम्॥१९॥ Meaning: O God, we invoke Thee, the troop-lord of troops. We invoke Thee, the Lord of the beloved ones. We invoke Thee, the Lord of the treasure of knowledge. O God, all beings reside in Thee. Thou art my judge. I know Thee full well free from birth, the Sustainer of Matter that keeps the universe in its womb. Thou knowest Matter

YajurVed 23:20

ताऽउ॒भौ च॒तुरः॑ प॒दः स॒म्प्रसा॑रयाव स्व॒र्गे लो॒के प्रोर्णु॑वाथां॒ वृषा॑ वा॒जी रे॑तो॒धा रेतो॑ दधातु॥२०॥


The King and his subjects in unison, magnify the four stages of Dharma, Arth, Kama, Moksha they reside happily in their country. The King, the chastiser of the wicked, full of knowledge, the possessor of strength and prowess, lends valour to his subjects

Yajur Ved 23:21

उत्स॑क्थ्या॒ऽअव॑ गु॒दं धे॑हि॒ सम॒ञ्जिं चा॑रया वृषन्। य स्त्री॒णां जी॑व॒भोज॑नः॥२१॥


O Ruler, man of strength and power, if there is anyone evil who plays with the life and honour of women, punish him. Establish peace among the people. Establish the rule of law. Eliminate immorality and wantonness from the state.

Now if you want direct from book translation it is in Hindi

But it's in a little poor quality.

enter image description here

So Stop believing in false translation meant to demean Vedas and read from authentic sources. Bye

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    It would be appreciated if you added the name of the translator & publisher of the book whose screenshot you have given.
    – অনু
    Apr 19, 2023 at 17:04
  • @অনু Dayananda gave this new interpretation. This translation can be found in Tulsiram's and Lekharam's translations. Aug 28, 2023 at 12:15
  • "...demean Vedas.." -- even if Vedas contain language implying insertion of a dead horse's organ into a human Queen's orifice, why do you automatically presume that it would be demeaning to our scriptures? I hope you realize you are using an Abrahamic lens when looking at the Vedas. Beastiality was more or less heard of and not uncommon in the ancient era. Our puranas reported it a few times through Rushis. Even today, esp in Middle East, people ocassionaly engage in it. Just because Abrahamic outlook thinks that is unbecoming of a human doesn't mean orientals view it the same way. Aug 30, 2023 at 22:15

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