Voices Of Women In India: Vedic Times And Now

2797 words - 11 pages

Using Lopamudra, women today can see how strong a women in a Vedic family could be and how society needed stronger women in a time when women were suppressed by a lack of property and were held to a high standard of honor. The hymn is found is found in the first Appendix of the RigVeda and includes Lopamudra, Agastya, and a poet who wrote it all down.
Lopamudra: For many autumns I have toiled, night and day, and each dawn has brought old age closer, age that distorts the glory of bodies. Virile Men should go to their wives.
For even men of past, who acted according to the Law and talked about the Law with the gods, broke off when they did not find end. Women should unite with virile men.
Agastya: Not in vain is all this toil, which the gods encourage. We two must always strive against each other, and by this we will win the race that is won by a hundred means, when we merge together as couple.
Lopamudra: Desire has come upon me for the bull who roars and is held back, desire engulfing me from this side, that side, all sides.
Poet: Lopamudra draws out the virile bull: the foolish woman sucks dry the panting wise man.
Agastya: By this Some which I have drunk, in my innermost heart I say: Let him forgive us if we have sinned, for a mortal is full of many desires.
Poet: Agastya, diggind with spades, wishing for children, progeny, and strength, nourished both ways, for he was a powerful sage. He found fulfillment of his real hope among the gods.

She was able to tell her husband that she was not being supported by him and that she needed more from their relationship. Her character breaks the stereotypes of the “typical” Indian woman. “Lopamudra’s attitude expresses a clear desire to de-stereotype the passivity of women.” The woman and man are able to debate the necessity of certain aspects of their lives and how it relates to their religion. She feels that their religion asks them to be more united while he believes they should be separately engaging in prayer unless they are performing the five daily rituals. Although women at the time may have been passive, the simple empowerment of Lopamudra is society telling the reader that either, there was a new beginning of women becoming more autonomous or there was a desire to see that change happen in the faith. “Lopamudra is no longer simply the negotiator of sex and gender roles, but is surrounded by males for whom she is taboo.” In the text she is standing with her husband and she is standing up for herself and for her wants along with the narrator in the text. She questions Agastya’s actions and reminds him of the duty that he has to her in their relationship. In that scenario she is meant to be standing aside and allowing her husband to dictate what they do, but even without a dowry, she is in control of the situation. She is in charge of her household and of her feelings. In her role, she is supposed to be passive and Agastya is meant to be the dominant force, but in this encounter she plays the...

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