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I was listening to a katha and the katha vachak said that in our shastras, it is forbidden even to touch a female wooden toy. In which shastra is it mentioned that you shouldn't touch/hug females?

Where is it said that males should maintain a distance from females?

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gopatha brahmaNa I.2.4 while explaining brahmacharya eulogizes a man who doesn't touch woman :

Indeed these five fires are placed in a brahmacharin (vedic student) - two separately in the hands, (one each) in the mouth (and) in the heart and fifth in the lap. In that he does not touch a woman with (his) right hand, thereby he obtains day by day that world which is won by those who offer every day. In that (he does not touch) with left hand, there by he obtains that world which is won by the religious mendicants. In that (he does not touch) with mouth, thereby (he obtains the world) of them who leap into fire. In that (he does not touch) with heart, thereby (he obtains world) of heroes. In that (he does not touch) with lap, thereby (he obtains the world ) of performers of household sacrifices. If with these (limbs) he touches a woman, he remains without fire, as it were.

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  • Brahmacharya begins with upanayana & ends with samavartana. Since non-brahmanas don't undergo upanayana, this means that they are exempted from these restrictions.
    – অনু
    Dec 4, 2023 at 17:46

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