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Satti in Hindusim: A Horrible Terror

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    Satti in Hindusim: A Horrible Terror

    No offence to Hindus and Hindusim. But whenever I think about this "Satti" meaning "To Burn Alive a Widow". It really pushes me to think over it. As far as I know, some women don't get burn after their husband dead and wear "White Sari" for the whole period of their life. I am inviting Hindus and others are most welcome, to discuss this issue according to Hindusim religion. I got two questions, which are as follows:

    1. Why does Hindusim allow Satti to woman after her husband death?

    2. Which class[1-4] of women don't get burn and why?

    Waiting for a reply.

    *Play your game - Guess my motto*


    if the woman is plump and juicy, she is fried as soon as her hubby kicks the bucket. if she is skinny, then she is made to wear white, and fed until she gets fat, and then bbq-ed.

    Simple ain't easy.


      oh btw, you got the spelling of "Hinduism" wrong all over your post.
      Simple ain't easy.


        Queer, thanks for pointing out the spelling of "Hinduism". Spelling doesn't matter here. The real thing matter is about the "Horrible Terror" against hindu women.

        *Play your game - Guess my motto*



          i can understand man. its been only 200 years since the practice of stati ended. so horrible! and since our current day society is so free of social evils, lets discuss such pressing issues. good move.
          Simple ain't easy.


            I don't mean to be offencive ...even if this tradition is over but still it has been praticing and thats what the real hinduism the nature of it...

            just trying to explore hinduism...
            where did and why did the tradition of sati came from?? what are the motives and believes behind it???? is it said in hindu scriptures? or something that people just made up???does cast or economic status matter in this situation???what reward women are believe to receive after being fried??? what abt pregnant women? do same rule apply to them???



              the tradition has social roots. the name sati comes from a mythical character who suicided on her husband's funeral pyre.

              sati was carried out by the warrior women, whose husbands were killed at war. it intensified when the marauding and plundering raids of the ghaznavids left many women widowed, and unable to protect their honor from the invading barbarians who sole aim was to loot, plunder and enslave.

              the custom was weeded out thru social reforms in hinduism. this might be a tough concept for people who follow religions which claim absoluteness and unchangeability to grasp, but hinduism evolves, and this isnt considered sacrilegious.
              Simple ain't easy.


                Sati is a practise which was abolished in India post reform movements undertaken in 19th Century ( Raja Ram Mohun Roy / Dayanand Saraswati etc) plus some pressure from Britishers as well..

                as to Secret Obsession's question that was Sati part of religion? I frankly dont know and would not bother as well..a inhuman act cannot be glorified just because it mentioned in scriptures...


                  Why does Hindusim allow Satti to woman after her husband death?
                  Ibrahim says : Greetings of Peace to one and all

                  Dear all,

                  Firstly before I discuss in this thread about this simple concept as understood by ancient Hindu women, let me apologize for revealing the TRUTH, since truth is too hot to handle for some, especially Hindus today and before they turn this thread into a mud slinging contest between Islam and Hinduism.


                  Do today’s Hindus sanction this practice?

                  Ask any modern Hindu today and he/she will vehemently deny that such a thing had existed in Hinduism.

                  There are a number of common excuses that Hindus are fond of conveying in this respect form my past discussions with hindus on this subject.

                  1) They will deny that it has anything to do with Hinduism

                  2) It is not a Hindu practice but introduced by Muslims and practiced by ignorant Hindus.

                  3) It was performed by women who had no choice since Muslims were trying to rape them once their husbands died in wars.

                  4) It was a custom before and had been banned and no one actually practices it nowadays. It is Obsolete.

                  5) Hinduism had some errors BUT we have changed completely…pointing the finger at the Indian constitution.

                  Ibrahim says: We should not blame the Hindus for coming up with the above lame excuses since it is an abominable practice and no human being in his right mind will want to accept that it is part of their religion.

                  On the Other hand the current hindutva practice of putting the blame on the Muslims is also despicable. And most hindus are unaware that it is being revived by the hindu rashtra fanatics of India.

                  The concept is simple, now, the reason a women was created was to be a good wife to her husband , hence if for any reason her husband died before her, she should follow suit and accompany him to heaven where she can be his wife also instead of her husband seeking pleasure with other women in heaven . Otherwise she should remain loyal and mourn for her husband till she dies.

                  Thus in Hinduism widows cannot remarry as such it is either die with the husband and accompany him to wherever he goes or adorn a white cloth and stay under the protection of the son or father till death approaches them.

                  Hence women who does not commit sati will be in mourning and cannot remarry in Hinduism. ( which is most common in these days when sati was frowned upon by the Muslims and British that ruled India, who also designed rules for its abolition.)

                  Ok, lets hope the above was simple to understand , now lets look at the scriptural sanction for this, as revealed in Hindu scriptures.

                  ”Suttee” or Sanskrit “Sati” is the Indian custom of a widow burning herself, either on the funeral pyre of her dead husband or soon after his death. Sometimes, the wife was immolated before the husband's expected death in battle, (eg. when the men were to fight a battle against all odds), it is then known as “Jauhar “

                  How prevalent is it?

                  In 1990, more than 50 widows were burnt alive in sati. [Sonali Verma, Reuter,12 August 1997, New Delhi]

                  Note: The data gathered for the report of 50 widows burned to death was not gathered on a collective basis, but as data for micro-sections of India.

                  So let us explore its origin

                  It is believed that sati originated because the Hindu needed his companions in the next world/Hindu heaven. This concept is illustrated in the Valmiki Ramayana; after Lord Rama murdered the relatively innocent Vali from ambush, Vali's wife Tara requests if he can kill her as well so she can join her husband:

                  So let us explore it roots in the Vedas since Ramayana is only an epic, was it just a tradition or was it sanctioned by the “Timeless Veda” which is the foundation for the Vedic religion and is considered sruti ( meaning revelation) that is infallible

                  The most sacred of Aryan scriptures are the Vedas, and the Rig Veda, the oldest veda, explicitly sanctions the custom of sati. The following famous `Sati Hymn' of the Rig Veda was (and still is) recited during the actual immolation of the widow -

                  Rig Veda X.18.7 : " Let these women, whose husbands are worthy and are living, enter the house with ghee (applied) as corrylium ( to their eyes). Let these wives first step into the pyre, tearless without any affliction and well adorned."

                  Further, the Vishnu smirti gives only two choices for the widow:

                  Vishnu Smirti.XXV.14 : "If a woman's husband dies, let her lead a life of chastity, or else mount his pyre"

                  another translation

                  "(Now the duties of a woman are as follows): After the death of her husband, to preserve her chastity, or to ascend the pile (funeral pyre) after him." -- Visnusmrti 25:14.

                  The Brahma Purana also conveys the same in the following verses

                  Brahma Purana. 80.75 : " It is the highest duty of the woman to immolate herself after her husband ",

                  Brahma Purana. 80.76, 80.77 : " She [ the sati ] lives with her husband in heaven for as many years as there are pores in the human body, ie. for 35 million years. "

                  Ibrahim says: Hence NO woman can resist this OFFER in principal, here she is told that she will Go to heaven ( when she kills herself) and will live with her husband for 35 million years

                  Several Hindu Goddesses also performed sati

                  Vishnu Purana.V.38 : " The 8 queens of Krishna, who have been named, with Rukmini at their head, embraced the body of Hari, and entered the funeral fire. Revati also embracing the corpse of Rama, entered the blazing pile, which was cool to her, happy in contact with her lord. Hearing these events, Ugrasena and Anakadundubhi, with Devaki and Rohini, committed themselves to the flames."

                  Ibrahim says: Hence the notion that sati is not sanctioned in the Hindu scriptures is utterly FALSE! But Hindus have no option except to deny its existence.


                  6th Century A.D. Kadamba king Raviverma's wife commits Sati after his death

                  908 A.D. First documented instance of Sati - Heggadetomma's widow Balakka goes Sati

                  1510 Portuguese traveler Barbosa visits the Vijayanagar empire and witnesses Sati prevalent in the Kshatriya community

                  1623 Italian traveler Pietro-Della Valle's account of a Sati ritual at Ikkeri

                  1805 Dewan Purnayya in Mysore Court of Wodeyars gives consent to a Brahmin widow to undergo Sati.(This is historically rare instance of an upper caste woman undergoing Sati.)

                  1828 Rajaram Mohan Roy establishes Brahmo Samaj to fight the evils of Hinduism like Sati, which gains momentum

                  1829 The British Administration of William Bentinck bans the Sati system

                  1850 Colonel Sleeman's account of a Sati ritual

                  1987 Roop Kanwar, a young widow goes Sati in the state of Rajasthan, stirring a social debate on the topic. People who assisted her in suicide are arrested. But Roop Kanwar is idolized and attains a deity status.

                  1996 The Indian Court upholds the suicide as a social tradition and frees the relatives who assisted Roop Kanwar.

                  : <a href="">A sati and a murder </a>

                  : <a href="">Crowd at `sati' site lathicharged </a>

                  : <a href="">Hundreds still flock to sati site </a>

                  : <a href="">Shocking Sati in UP </a>

                  Sati was prohibited by the British Government in 1829. Regulation XVII of 1829 declared sati illegal and punishable by the criminal courts as 'culpable homicide' amounting to manslaughter,' for which a death sentence could be awarded. [ 2 ]. The orthodox Hindus protested and made an appeal to the Privy Council in England. However, the council dismissed the appeal. Thus after having been practiced in India for over two thousand years, the institution of widow-burning became illegal by the law enacted by a foreign power.

                  In 1990, more than 50 widows were burnt alive in sati. [Sonali Verma, Reuter,12 August 1997, New Delhi]

                  Note: The data gathered for the report of 50 widows burned to death was not gathered on a collective basis, but as data for micro-sections of India.

                  Deccan Herald Feb 8, 1999
                  international vice-president of the VHP Acharya Giriraj Kishore who once reacted to the Roop Kanwar case by saying that ''Hindu dharma has no space for sati`` was now defending the practice: ''There is nothing wrong if any woman who cannot bear the separation from her husband opts to join him in his funeral pyre.``

                  The VHP leader said the revival of 'sati` would not be out of tune with the VHP`s ideology of establishing Hindu Rashtra.

                  The Times of India reported (14-9-87):
                  Jaipur- In what appeared to be a revival of a centuries-old custom of "Sati", a young woman belonging to a warrior caste of Rajasthan climbed into the funeral pyre of her husband, police said yesterday. Eighteen-year old Roop Kanwar's husband, Mansingh, had died in a hospital in Kikar district on Friday, His body was later taken to his home village at Diwrala for cremation. Roop Kanwar sat on the funeral pyre while it was lit by one of Mansingh ' s relatives. Hundreds of villagers who knew of her "Sati" well in advance gathered at the spot shouting slogans in praise of the burning widow. Police, who claimed to have received the information late, registered a case against four close relatives of Mansingh for having "HELPED" Roop Kanwar commit "Sati".

                  Roop Kanwar's husband, Mansingh took more than Rs. 100,000 worth of dowry in the form of money, 25 tola of gold, a TV, a radio and a refrigerator. Though Mansingh had demanded dowry worth of 200,000 rupees, her father had success- fully negotiated and reduced the amount to Rs. 100,000/=. So far in the same village more than 23 dowry killings have occurred in the last 3 years as recompense for not bringing the promised dowry in time.

                  The paper continues that the most revealing statement came from Mr. Cheeta Singh, a village teacher who said: "After all, she had no life to took forward to. As a widow, remarriage was out of the question in the Hindu tradition bound community".

                  The teacher continues: "The society treats a widow as a "kulachani" (an evil omen) and a economic liability. She has to remain barefoot, sleep on the floor and is not allowed to venture out of the house. She is slandered if seen talking to any male. It was better that she died, than live such a life "he said.

                  Widow kills children, attempts suicide
                  June 28, 2000

                  A young widow murdered her two kids and attempted suicide in Kolhapur last night.

                  Police said Meena Arvinda Gaikwad (23), who lived with her two children and mother-in-law at Shahupuri, had struggled to come to terms with her husband's death six months back.

                  Last night she strangulated her three-month-old daughter Shrutika and three-year-old-son Hrushikesh with a rope. Later, she consumed a poisonous liquid.

                  The incident came to in light, when Meena's mother-in-law Shashikala returned home, police said.

                  Meena and the children were taken to the Chhatrapati Pramila Raje Civil Hospital, where the kids were declared dead on admission.

                  Meena, doctors attending to her said, is recovering.

                  Additional References :-

                  POOR STATUS OF WOMEN IN HINDUISM Professor Indira, M.A. (who has other
                  qualifications like ‘Sastri Kavya Tiruth’ & ‘Vidyalankar M.O.L’)

                  Agarwal, P. (1991) Passage From India: Post-1965 Indian Immigrants and Their Children. Palos Verdes: Yuvati Publications.

                  Altekar, A.S. (1983) The Position of Women in Hindu Civilization: From Prehistoric Times to the Present Day. New Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass.

                  Banerjee, P. (1996). "Bride Burning and Dowry Deaths in India: Gruesome and Escalating Violence on Women." Bride Burning and Dowry Deaths in India. Accessed February 2, 1998.

                  Chaterji, S.A. (1988) The Indian Women's Search for an Identity. New Delhi: Vikas Publishing House PVT Ltd.

                  Chaturvedi, S. (1995) "Whether Inheritance to Women is a Viable Solution of the Dowry Problem in India". Journal of South Asian Women Studies Vol. 1

                  Comas-Diaz, L. and Greene, B. (1994) "Women of Colour: Integrating Ethnic and Gender Identities in Psychotherapy." Women of Colour in Battering Relationships. Guilford Press.

                  "Dowry Death Capital of the World." India Pulse: Delhi.

                  Desai, N. and Krishnaraj, M. (1987) Women and Society in India. New Delhi: Ajantha Publications.

                  Dominelli, L. and McLeod, E. (1989) Feminist Social Work.

                  Donnelly, T. Dowry in the 12th century.

                  Finkelhor, D. et al. (1983) "The Darker Side of Families: Current Family Violence Research." Common Features of Family Abuse. Sage Publications.

                  Garzilli, E. (1996) "Stridhana: Too Have and to Have Not." Journal of South Asian Women Studies, Vol. 2,

                  Ghosh, S.K. (1989) Indian Women Through The Ages. New Delhi: Ashish Publishing House.

                  Gnanadson, A. Dowry (India).

                  Gupta, A.R. (1982) Women in Hindu Society: A Study of Tradition and Transition. New Delhi: Jyotsna Prakashan.

                  Hate, C. A. (1969) Changing Status of Woman: In Post-Independence India. Bombay: Allied Publishers Private Limited.

                  Iyer, V.R.K. (1997) The Hindu Online.

                  Kamath, R. (1995) "The Curse of Dowry." Rekha's Anthology of Poems.

                  Kishwar, M. and Vanita, R. (1996) "Women Against Dowry: A Manushi Report." In Search of Answers: Indian Women's Voices From Manushi. New Delhi, Manohar Publishers and Distributors, No. 3, 178-83.

                  Kumari, R. (1989) Brides are not for Burning: Dowry Victims in India. New Delhi: Radiant Publishers.

                  Pushkama, V. The Week Magazine .

                  Moore, M. (1997) "Consumerism Fuels Dowry Death Wave: Bride Burnings on the Increase in India." Washington Post Foreign Service.

                  Rao, R. "Marriage At A Price." India's Dowry.

                  Seyan, R. (1994) The Price of Dowry. Accessed January 21, 1998.

                  Sherwood, C. (1997) "India's Outlawed Dowry System in Britain." London Observer.

                  Sivaramayya, Dr. B. (1997) "Law Of Daughters, Sons and Widows: Discrimination in Inheritance Laws.", Issue No. 100. Lifting the Veil. Accessed January 19, 1998.

                  Stordeur, R.A. and Stille, R. (1989) "Ending Men's Violence Against Their Partners: One Road to Peace." Sage Publications.

                  Thakur, H. International Society Against Dowry and Bride Burning in India.


                    Hey Ibrahim ,

                    cool down chappy...u write with so much venom..

                    did I or anybody else say that religion does not mention Sati? our point is that now the custom is obsolete. There may be stray cases now and there but that is more due to lack of education.

                    Last month I gave you a skirt as a incentive..
                    This time I will give you a raise in the incentive



                      It's refreshing to see that Brother Ibrahim has not lost his touch and is holding the 'response flag' with vigour. For those who cringe at Ibrahim's responses only do so because his answers are always factual and backed up with evidence from both sources.

                      The Qur'aan states:

                      029.046 And dispute ye not with the People of the Book, except with means better (than mere disputation), unless it be with those of them who inflict wrong (and injury): but say, "We believe in the revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to you; Our Allah and your Allah is one; and it is to Him we bow (in Islam)."

                      Unfortunately, the Truth does hurt some people, but so does 'putting your hand in fire'.

                      Anyway getting back to barbaric practice of Satee, Ibrahim has given you more than enough info. But I suppose this is still not good enough!

                      Hindus will argue that we are a religion of peace and equality despite 'burning those 2nd class creatures alive' who no longer fall into the category of Pativrata!

                      Peace - yes- only after burning the poor woman, do the family members and community feel at Peace.

                      Equality - yes - if the man is dead, then the woman must die also.

                      The fact remains that even tough the Government has abolished this practice (only for political reasons) I may add. For the devout Hindus, a woman who performs Satee is worshipped as a Goddess, the perfect example of the self sacrificing wife!!!

                      It would be good for our Pagan colleagues to do some of their own research and not always rely on Ibrahim and read the book DARAMASASTRA focusing on the chapter STRIDHARMAPADDHATI. The compiler of this work is no other than Tryambaka, an orthodox pundit! You will get your answers.



                        typical response from ibrahim once again. narrow-minded folks would quote "hinduism" from hate sites, rather than learn it from hindus. one can only wake up someone who is sleeping, not someone who is pretending to be asleep.

                        fact is, sati is a thing of the past. hinduism changes with the times. nothing in this world is constant - reality, morality and truth are contextual matters, and hinduism accomodates this fact readily. you can defame it all you want, but it wont change the truth that hindus have always been, and shall continue to be one of the most scientifically oriented communities in the world.
                        Simple ain't easy.


                          give the whole india to musharuff he will
                          change the whole sub-continent to paradise
                          after having so mcuh success with pakistan.


                            Originally posted by oursoulsatpeace:
                            u write with so much venom..
                            Ibrahim says thanks, I needed that, I must consider it a compliment , since I made it clear that I have received varying answers from hindus and what you had said and are saying was also listed therein. Yet you found venom ?

                            did I or anybody else say that religion does not mention Sati?
                            Ibrahim says : was I responding to you? Or was I answering the question posed by Pakistani tiger? Did you notice the many responses , I had mentioned, as given by hindus when you pose such a question to them ?

                            our point is that now the custom is obsolete.
                            Ibrahim says: my friend, why not read what I said and digest it before you make these claims.

                            Second the answers provided by you and Mr. Queer, was not entirely accurate was it?

                            Did you find any errors in my post?

                            There may be stray cases now and there but that is more due to lack of education.
                            Ibrahim says : Mr.Queer mentioned it became obsolete 200 years ago and you mentioned it was stopped by hindus, how accurate were your comments?

                            Second did you read VHP approval for such practices?

                            So please. Read, digest, find fault only after that, not because a Muslim responded to a question which should have been answered by a hindu.


                              ibrahim how come these things still happen in islamic pakistan? i see same pattern
                              in north indian and pakistani culture.
                              these things never happens in arab or other
                              islamic cultures. even in in other part of india it does not happen.

                              World: South Asia

                              Unwanted Pakistani brides burned, says study

                              [This message has been edited by rvikz (edited March 28, 2002).]