Questions tagged [dharma-shastras]

Dharmaśāstra (Sanskrit: धर्मशास्त्र) is a genre of Sanskrit texts, and refers to the treatises (shastras) of Hinduism on dharma. 

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Did karna learn the vedas from Drona?

I am looking for explicit mention in KMG Mahabharata that Karna learnt vedas from Drona (will be helpful if there are passages that show he conducted vedic rites). I don't think he learnt vedas from ...
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In what scenarios, is adultery not punishable?

According to below post, Hindu (& even other religious) texts condemn Adultery: Clarification regarding adultery, extra-marital relations From wiki article, however Hinduism has diverse views: ...
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Can dharma change with desa and kAla paristhiti? [duplicate]

Is it explicitly mentioned anywhere that dharma can change with desa-kAla conditions? If not explicit mention, is it implied anywhere? If it can change, how much can it change? What was considered ...
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What is the view of different dharma shastras on domestic violence against women?

What do different dharma shastras say about domestic violence against women, is domestic violence treated as sin in majority of them? I would like to know from different dharma shastras especially the ...
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Is it true that Madhvācārīs used to emboss their bodies with hot iron blocks?

This article, Urdhapundra – The Vaishnavite Tilak, claims: The Madhvacharis use hot iron blocks to emboss their bodies, especially the shoulders, with the four symbols of Vishnu. Questions: Is ...
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Can adoption fullfill one's Pitru Rina?

According to Shastra, every man has three debts in his life. These debts are: 1) Deva Rina - debt to Devas, who provide us with rain and food. 2) Rishi Runa - debt to Rishis, who give us knowledge. ...
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Dharma Shastras on Black Money, Corruption and paying Interest

What does dharma shastras say about Black Money and Corruption In India giving Bribery is a common act one has to go through it one day or the other. If one has given Bribe is he doing Adharma, if ...
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Are there more than one manusmritis?

I came across an article criticizing Manusmriti for degradation of women (precisely), please see the link However, when I searched the given verses in an online library with sage Medhatithi's ...
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Can a Kshatriya ask for alms according to Hindusim?

I've read somewhere, most probably in some shastra, that in case of scarcity or lack of resource, and if it's a question of survival, a Kshatriya can ask for alms. What are your views regarding this? ...
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Remarriage in Sanātana Dharma

Marriage in Sanātana Dharma was or is never a personal matter instead it is a social matter and responsibility. We all know that, there is no concept of "divorce" in Hinduism. But somehow, our law ...
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Grihasthashram - Parents or in-laws : Who is to be obeyed ? In case of husband, and in case of wife?

Grihasthashram or Marriage is the joining of not just 2 souls - man and woman, but their two families as well. When there is a difference of opinion between the 2 in-laws, how do shastras recommend ...
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What does the Bhagavad Gita mean when it says caste is based on Gunas? Does it mean trained, external behavior, or genetic predisposition?

What does the Bhagavad Gita mean when it says caste is based on Gunas? Does it mean trained, external behavior, or genetic predisposition? For reference, this verse says, 4.13 - The [social] ...
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Why do only some Brahmins have a tuft of hair? Is it mandatory to cut the tuft of hair before leaving India?

Why is it that some Brahmins have a tuft of hair and some don't? Is it optional? Furthermore, the great Indian mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan before leaving to Cambridge University cut his tuft ...
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Does Narada Maharishi permit having sex with prostitutes and promiscuous girls? Need commentary

Note, that this question is NOT a duplicate of this, or this, or even this. This verse from the Narada Smriti permits sex with promiscuous women, prostitutes, and unmarried women freely: 12.78 - ...
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Is Euthanasia considered morally right?

Is Euthanasia considered morally right? Is it acceptable under certain conditions, for example, if a person is in extreme pain?
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How is prāyaścitta different from daṇḍa? Are both complementary to each other?

How is prāyaścitta (atonement or expiation) different from daṇḍa (punishment sanctioned by the king)? Is prāyaścitta a voluntary/self-imposed punishment for a sin that one commits? Are both ...
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Why do people do evil actions? Is it due to karma?

Why do people do evil actions? Is it due to karma? People who do evil actions do so because they get evil thoughts and desires. Why do they think these evil thoughts and desires? What do the ...
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Eating vegetarian beef as a Hindu

Eating meat is prohibited in Manu Smriti. The people who eat vegetarian beef have the same impure thought as the people who eat real beef. Should vegetarian beef be prohibited for Hindus?
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Why is intercaste marriage bad? [duplicate]

Why is intercaste marriage bad? Is this just a case of Brahminical oppression to subdue the lower castes, or is there any spiritual, dharmic, or beneficial reason behind this practice? What do the ...
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Color of Yagnopvaita (Janeu)

Yagnopavitam or Janeu is generally worn as a white cotton thread amongst brahmins, but some people wear yellow-colored thread (by applying turmeric). I have following questions What is the correct ...
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What is the reason behind men/women tying a waist band?

I have seen many men wearing a waist band or thread around their waist, red or black color. It's called Karbuta in Marathi. Is there any significance behind wearing it?
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Has any ancient or medieval Vedic scholar refuted the guna-based varna theory?

Followers of Vivekananda and reformist Hindus today such as Arya Samaj believe that caste is determined by someone's external behavior. For example, if someone is pious, he should be a Brahmin. Has ...
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Can Brahmins atone for the sin of drinking liquor through other means than suicide?

According to Hinduism, there are 5 mortal sins, or mahapatakas. They are: One who steals gold [of a Brahmana], who drinks Sura [rice or grain based alcohol], who has sex with the Guru's wife and ...
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What's the origin of the verse “Mangalyam tantunanena mama jeevana hetuna…?”

In many South Indian marriages while the groom is tying the maṅgalasūtra to the bride, the priest usually chants the following verse. Mangalyam tantunanena mama jeevana hetuna: kanthe badhnami ...
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Why should temples be closed during an eclipse?

Any reference in the Hindu scriptures (Vedas, Agamas, shastras, etc.) on why temples should remain closed during an eclipse (grahana)?
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Liberated souls come back [duplicate]

Do the souls which attained moksha in this creation again come back to earth to undergo birth and death process in the next creation which takes place after mahapralay?
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What does the Vedic literature speak about pre-marital sex and sexual abstinence? [duplicate]

I understand that unlike Abrahamic religions, sex is primarily not a taboo in our Sanatana Dharma. However, I would like to know what is laid out in the scriptures regarding 'pre-marital sex' and ...
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Availability of English translations for commentaries of Gautama Dharmasūtra

Gautama Dharmasūtra is a Sanskrit text and likely one of the oldest Hindu Dharmasutras (600-200 BCE), whose manuscripts have survived into the modern age. From this source There are two extant ...
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Does scripture say that widows are inauspicious?

Among other things, I understand that a widow is not allowed to give her son/daughter away in marriage, only a husband-wife couple can do so.
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Can I trim / shave my own head being a Brahmin?

Can I trim my own head hair being a Brahmin? Is this against the Hindu Dharma? Thanks
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Do Hindus have specific dress code guidelines in their dharma shastras (scriptures)?

Are there any specific teachings related to how Hindus should dress in the public? In Islam, for instance, it has been outlined that women must wear a hijab or nikab. Islam has very clear instructions ...
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Is BG 16.23 referring to Vedas or dharma śāstras?

BG 16.23 yaḥ śāstra-vidhim utsṛjya vartate kāma-kārataḥ na sa siddhim avāpnoti na sukhaṁ na parāṁ gatim Ignoring the precept of the scriptures, he who acts under the impulsion of passion, ...
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Is levirate marriage allowed in Hinduism? [duplicate]

Wikipedia defines it as: Levirate marriage is a type of marriage in which the brother of a deceased man is obliged to marry his brother's widow. The term levirate is itself a derivative of the ...
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Are Dharma sutras different from Dharma Shastra?

When one searches for Dharma Shastra, books like manu smriti, and various other smriti comes, but when one searches for dharma sutras, baudhayana sutras and the likes come. What is the difference ...
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How can everybody attain Moksha if the new descendents are always born & certain Karma-s are always lingering?

Moksha implies freedom from the cycle of rebirth. In theory thus anybody can attain it, including lower species who may ascend to higher consciousness. What about the latest descendents, who will ...
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How can an unmarried person repay their debt to parents and ancestors?

How can a person not interested in marriage (because they think it's a waste of time and money, also causes one to lose their peace of mind) repay their debt to parents and ancestors? Does adopting a ...
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How to recover from lost caste status after crossing an ocean?

Based on what I know, the most loss of Hindutva that can happen is loss of caste (which would include the right to cremate one's parents), for example for crossing the ocean. From here: Baudhayana ...
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Is crossing the ocean (Samudrollanghana) a taboo in Hinduism? [duplicate]

As per the below wiki link, crossing the ocean is considered a taboo in hinduism. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kala_pani_(taboo) The link gives quote from a dharmashastra which prohibits ...
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Difference/Relation between Varna and Jati

We know that there are four Varna(वर्ण) called Brahmin, kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra. I found words/terms like Jati(जाति) and Jnati(ज्ञाति) are also used to convey similar meanings. One another ...
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Is it a sin for promiscuous, unmarried women to have sex with many men?

As discussed in this question, many ancient Vedic scholars believe that the Vedas declare that it is not sinful for grihastha men to have sex with promiscuous, unmarried women. This question is now ...
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Is it a sin to have sex with promiscuous, unmarried women?

According to Hindu scriptures, it is a sin for a man to have sex with most women who aren't his wives. An ancient acharya says that it is permissible (not sinful) to have sex with your wife(s) and ...
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How do Sri Vaishnavas interpret this Sutra of the Apastamba Dharma Sutras?

Apastamba Dharma Sutras (2.9.21.13) - Abandoning truth and falsehood, pleasure and pain, the Vedas, this world and the next, he shall seek the ātman. My question is about the abandoning the "truth ...
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Is relationship between father and son eternal?

Even after the death, only shrAdha ceremony will help the soul to reach heaven. The soul will mostly reincarnate in same blood line so can we conclude the relationship between father and son is ...
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What is dharma for Mlecchas according to Hinduism?

Dharma is eternal and fixed. Each varna in Hinduism has its own dharma, which is defined by the Vedas. What is the dharma for Mlecchas?
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Is it against dharma if a single son is following brahmacharya? Can an only son be a brahmachari even if he's not a sannyasi?

There is a story of Agastya muni. He saw his ancestors lying upside down without attaining salvation. They said that it is because there is no one to continue their family because Agastya muni did ...
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How is “Patriotism” seen from the Hindu Dharma perspective?

Are there any scriptures (Dharma Shastra-s) or Hindu saints who have talked about patriotism? Related: This post discusses specific to Kshatriya class, Martyr concept in Hinduism
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Is it a sin for a man to have sex with women who aren't his wife(s)?

This section of the Manusmriti on wisdomlib.org talks about what constitutes adultery. In this section, it is clearly said that for a man, adultery constitutes engaging in sex with the wife of ...
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Which Veda Shaka, Gotra etc, will a person should follow after he was converted into Brahmin, Kshatriya or Vaishya?

All Smritis are clear that Varna is primarily based on birth. A person born as a Brahmin will lose his status if his conduct is not good, but even if a person born as a Shudra has good conduct, he ...
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Who was the author of the Manusmriti?

Who was the author of the Manusmriti? Now many of you might say "Manu", but it's actually not quite clear from the text itself. First of all, the word "Manusmriti" means "recollection of Manu", ...
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What is the punishment for those who discriminate on basis of birth?

Is there any punishment in Sanatan Dharma for those who discriminate on basis of birth. By discrimination, I mean depriving someone of some basic rights like education, drinking water from public ...