Saturday, 26 November 2016

The Sex Culture During the Mahabharatha is Quite Shocking!

So, a while back, I came across an article from Daily Bhaskar titled The Sex Culture During the Mahabharatha is Quite Shocking. In my opinion, it was an excellent article, backed my facts from Mahabharatha. But from the comments, it seems like many Hindus are in denial as they have not read the epic. For example, you can see Agniveer's poor rebuttal of the facts presented in the article (Daily Bhaskar Insults Hinduism - Agniveer's Response). His mentality can also be seen in his so-called rebuttal by the fact that he calls the topless women shown in the pictures of Daily Bhaskar's article, as prostitutes. Had he done his homework better, he would have realized that during Mahabharatha time, women went around topless. For example, during the Rangbhoomi in Mahabharatha, Vyasa describes how Kunti's tears wet her breasts, and mixed with her breast milk. Now if one had their breasts covered, this would not be possible, right? This implies that women went around topless:
"On seeing Arjuna, the whole assembly were delighted and conchs began to be blown all around with other musical instruments. And there arose a great uproar in consequence of the spectators' exclaiming,--'This is the graceful son of Kunti!'--'This is the middle (third) Pandava!'--'This is the son of the mighty Indra!'--'This is the protector of the Kurus'--'This is the foremost of those versed in arms!'--'This is the foremost of all cherishers of virtue!'--'This is the foremost of the persons of correct behaviour, the great repository of the knowledge of manners!' At those exclamations, the tears of Kunti, mixing with the milk of her breast, wetted her bosom.
Adi Parva Section CXXXVII
I will soon post an article dedicated to explaining how toplessness was prevalent in Ancient India, with many references from Mahabharatha and Ramayana...

It also seems Agniveer is unaware of the fact that in Ancient India, majority of the wives of Indian men would prostitute themselves after marriage. Below, I have posted an excerpt of Megasthenes' records compiled in the book Indika (pg 71):
Some they marry, hoping to find in them willing helpmates; and others for pleasure and to fill their houses with children. The wives prostitute themselves unless they are compelled to be chaste.
So, what is Agniveer ashamed of? Was it toplessness or prostitution, because both were common in Ancient India... Due to Agniveer's biased article, it seems that many Hindus are trashing the author that wrote the Daily Bhaskar article and branding him/her as anti-Hindu or Hinduphobic. However, all the points raised by the author were completely valid. In this post, I will provide textual evidence to back the claims made by the author.

The textual evidence provided in this post, about Mahabharatha is from the Mahabharatha, translated into English by Kisari Mohan Ganguly. This 18-parva long epic can be accessed by the link below:

The Mahabharatha of Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa translated by Kisari Mohan Ganguly

The textual evidence provided in this post, about Riga Veda is from the Riga Veda, translated into English by Ralph T.H. Griffith. It can be accessed by the link below:

The Riga Veda translated by Ralph T.H. Griffith

The Daily Bhaskar article consists of 8 slides. The text in each of these slides will be provided below, along with an analysis of that text, and textual evidence to support or reject the claims made by the author of the article.

Slide 1 - The Author Writes...
There was a stage in our history, when there were no social rules formed for sex between men and women. That was the time when no cared about relationships they shared with other human beings before having sex with them. This is because there were no such relationships back then. Having sex with any woman, having open sex anywhere anytime like animals, having sex with young girls and even with animals was a common thing with humans. Sex was wayward that time. With the development of civilization, relationships, social practices and ethical standards developed. We can understand it in historical sociological context.
Slide 1 - My Analysis... 

In the first paragraph, the author says that at one time in Ancient India, there were no social rules formed for sex between men and women. This is true, but the time period for this was much much before the Mahabharatha time. By the Mahabharatha time, in Hastinapura, social rules for having sex had been made. In Adi Parva, when Pandu asks Kunti to do Niyoga for children, Kunti initially refuses. Then, Pandu talks about an anceint time when there were no rules regarding marriage, and both men and women were free. They could have sex as they liked, and leave one another when they wanted to. They were not bound to be with one another for their entire life. I am posting Pandu's entire speech that talks about these relationships in Ancient India:

But I shall now tell thee about the practices of old indicated by illustrious Rishis, fully acquainted with every rule of morality. O thou of handsome face and sweet smiles, women formerly were not immured within houses and dependent on husbands and other relatives. They used to go about freely, enjoying themselves as best as they liked. O thou of excellent qualities, they did not then adhere to their husbands faithfully, and yet, O handsome one, they were not regarded sinful, for that was the sanctioned usage of the times. That very usage is followed to this day by birds and beasts without any (exhibition of) jealousy. That practice, sanctioned by precedent, is applauded by great Rishis. O thou of taper thighs, the practice is yet regarded with respect amongst the Northern Kurus. Indeed, that usage, so lenient to women, hath the sanction of antiquity. The present practice, however (of women's being confined to one husband for life) hath been established but lately. I shall tell thee in detail who established it and why.
"It hath been heard by us that there was a great Rishi of the name of Uddalaka, who had a son named Swetaketu who also was an ascetic of merit. O thou of eyes like lotus-petals, the present virtuous practice hath been established by that Swetaketu from anger. Hear thou the reason. One day, in the presence of Swetaketu's father a Brahmana came and catching Swetaketu's mother by the hand, told her, 'Let us go.' Beholding his mother seized by the hand and taken away apparently by force, the son was greatly moved by wrath. Seeing his son indignant, Uddalaka addressed him and said, 'Be not angry. O son! This is the practice sanctioned by antiquity. The women of all orders in this world are free, O son; men in this matter, as regards their respective orders, act as kine.' The Rishi's son, Swetaketu, however, disapproved of the usage and established in the world the present practice as regards men and women. It hath been heard by us, O thou of great virtue, that the existing practice dates from that period among human beings but not among beings of other classes. Accordingly, since the establishment of the present usage, it is sinful for women not to adhere to their husbands. Women transgressing the limits assigned by the Rishi became guilty of slaying the embryo. And, men, too, viol ting a chaste and loving wife who hath from her maidenhood observed the vow of purity, became guilty of the same sin. The woman also who, being commanded by her husband to raise offspring, refuses to do his bidding, becometh equally sinful.
Adi Parva Section CXXII 
So, as you can see from the text above, women were initially free, and were not bound to a man. The concept of a woman staying with one man all her life in marriage was created much later... However, an important thing to note is that in the Uttara Kuru kingdom (modern day Russia), men and women both were still free, even during Mahabharatha times. This kingdom is what was called Indra lok or Heaven and was ruled by Indra (Arjuna's biological father). Urvashi belonged from this kingdom, and that explains her lack of hesitance in asking Arjuna to have sex with her (despite her being a motherly figure to him). This suggests that in Ancient India, when such rules were present (before Mahabharatha times), sex between mother and son was not looked down upon. This supports the claim made by the author. Nobody cared about the relationship with the other person prior to having sex, as sex was considered natural, and not a taboo as it is considered today. Also note in the passage how Swetaketu's mother leaves Swetaketu and goes along with another man... This would prevent a strong mother-son bond from forming. This shows that the relationships back then that were formed were not really strong, just as the author of the article mentioned.

In the second paragraph on slide 1, the author mentions that back at that time, having open sex, sex with animals, and sex with young girls was common. Well, open sex was common back then. An example of that would be Satyavati having sex with Parasharaa in the open:

"The fish-smelling daughter of the Apsara in her piscatorial form was then given by the king unto the fishermen, saying, 'Let this one be thy daughter.' That girl was known by the name of Satyavati. And gifted with great beauty and possessed of every virtue, she of agreeable smiles, owing to contact with fishermen, was for some time of the fishy smell. Wishing to serve her (foster) father she plied a boat on the waters of the Yamuna.
"While engaged in this vocation, Satyavati was seen one day by the great Rishi Parasara, in course of his wanderings. As she was gifted with great beauty, an object of desire even with an anchorite, and of graceful smiles, the wise sage, as soon as he beheld her, desired to have her. And that bull amongst Munis addressed the daughter of Vasu of celestial beauty and tapering thighs, saying, 'Accept my embraces, O blessed one!' Satyavati replied, 'O holy one, behold the Rishis standing on either bank of the river. Seen by them, how can I grant thy wish?' 
"Thus addressed by her, the ascetic thereupon created a fog (which existed not before and) which enveloped the whole region in darkness. And the maiden, beholding the fog that was created by the great Rishi wondered much. And the helpless one became suffused with the blushes of bashfulness. And she said, 'O holy one, note that I am a maiden under the control of my father. O sinless one, by accepting your embraces my virginity will be sullied. O best of Brahmanas, my virginity being sullied, how shall I, O Rishi, be able to return home? Indeed, I shall not then be able to bear life. Reflecting upon all this, O illustrious one, do that which should be done.' That best of Rishis, gratified with all she said, replied, "Thou shall remain a virgin even if thou grantest my wish. And, O timid one, O beauteous lady, solicit the boon that thou desirest. O thou of fair smiles, my grace hath never before proved fruitless.' Thus addressed, the maiden asked for the boon that her body might emit a sweet scent (instead of the fish-odour that it had). And the illustrious Rishi thereupon granted that wish of her heart. 
"Having obtained her boon, she became highly pleased, and her season immediately came. And she accepted the embraces of that Rishi of wonderful deeds. And she thenceforth became known among men by the name of Gandhavati (the sweet-scented one). And men could perceive her scent from the distance of a yojana. And for this she was known by another name which was Yojanagandha (one who scatters her scent for a yojana all around). And the illustrious Parasara, after this, went to his own asylum.
Adi Parva Section LXIII 
As you can see from the passage above, Satyavati and Rishi Parasharaa met when Satyavati was riding a boat in the Yamuna River. After their conversation, they had sex. Since they met when Satyavati was riding the boast, they must have had sex in the open, either while on the boat in the Yamuna River, or off the boat, on the coast of the Yamuna River. So open sex was not considered a taboo back then. In 305 BCE, Megasthenes mentions some Indian tribes that have sex in the open, and don't consider it shameful.

In Ancient India, sex with animals was also common. This is shown by the image from the Ellora Caves (shown below):

Related image

As you can see, the ancients were not ashamed of bestality and showed bestality in this kind of images. But this image also shows that women were ashamed of this practice (see woman disgusted in image) and hence, it soon got banned. By Mahabharatha times, it became obsolete. When Pandu kills Rishi Kindama, the Rishi asks Pandu why he killed him when he was having intercourse with a female deer. Since the practice of having sex with animals was obsolete in the society during Mahabharatha times, Rishi Kindama went away from society to the woods to have sex with the female deer:

I am a Muni of the name of Kindama, possessed of ascetic merit. I was engaged in sexual intercourse with this deer, because my feelings of modesty did not permit me to indulge in such an act in human society.
Adi Parva Section CXVIII
Hence, the practice of having sex with animals was once present in Ancient India, before Mahabharatha times (possibly during the time when men and women were both free). However, by Mahabharatha times, it was looked down upon. Also, in Kautilya's Arthashastra, he puts a fine for those that indulge in bestiality. Having sex with young girls was also prevalent back then. Just recall Satyavati having sex with Rishi Parasharaa, and Kunti having sex with Durvasa (Surya dev). Both were young when they had sex with those men.

I also must point out that even though women were not free to leave their husband during Mahabharatha times (compared to the ancient times I explained earlier), there were still  regions in Mahabharatha-period India where extramarital sex was prevalent. This is shown by Karna's speech to Shalya in Karna Parva where he talks about the people from Madra desh (which was ruled by Shalya):

The Madraka is always a hater of friends. He that hateth us is a Madraka. There is no friendship in the Madraka who is mean in speech and is the lowest of mankind. The Madraka is always a person of wicked soul, is always untruthful and crooked. It hath been heard by us that till the moment of death the Madrakas are wicked. (Amongst the Madrakas) the sire, the son, the mother, the mother-in-law, the brother, the grand-son, and other kinsmen, companions, strangers arrived at their homes, slaves male and female, mingle together. The women of the Madrakas mingle, at their own will, with men known and unknown. Of unrighteous conduct, and subsisting upon fried and powdered corn and fish, in their homes, they laugh and cry having drunk spirits and eaten beef. They sing incoherent songs and mingle lustfully with one another, indulging the while in the freest speeches. 
Knowing this, O learned one, hold thy tongue, or listen to something further that I will say. Those women that, intoxicated by spirits, cast off their robes and dance, those women that are not attached (to particular individuals) in the matter of intercourse and that they do as they please without owning any restrictions, I say, that being as thou art the child of one of those women, how canst thou, O Madraka, be a fit person for declaring the duties of men? Those women that live and answer calls of nature like camels and asses, being as thou art the child of one of those sinful and shameless creatures, how canst thou wish to declare the duties of men? When a Madraka woman is solicited for the gift of a little quantity of vinegar, she scratches her hips and without being desirous of giving it, says these cruel words, 'Let no man ask any vinegar of me that is so dear to me. I would give him my son, I would give him my husband, but vinegar I would not give.' The young Madraka maidens, we hear, are generally very shameless and hairy and gluttonous and impure. These and many other things of a like nature, in respect of all their acts, from the crown of their heads to the tip of their toes, are capable of being asserted of them by myself and others. How, indeed, would the Madrakas and the Sindhu-Sauviras know anything of duty, being born, as they are, in a sinful country, being mlecchas in their practices, and being totally regardless of all duties? 
Karna Parva Section 40
This speech by Karna reveals a lot about his character. He comes across as a misogynist... He shows a lot of hatred and frustration that the women in Madra desh, indulge in both extramarital sex and premarital sex.

Karna then insults the women of Sakala. He is angry at them as they drink liquor, eat meat, laugh, sing, and dance in the open, and have no restraint in matters of sex (meaning they have sex outside of marriage):

There is a town of the name of Sakala, a river of the name of Apaga, and a clan of the Vahikas known by the name of the Jarttikas. The practices of these people are very censurable. They drink the liquor called Gauda, and eat fried barley with it. They also eat beef with garlic. They also eat cakes of flour mixed with meat, and boiled rice that is bought from others. Of righteous practices they have none. Their women, intoxicated with drink and divested of robes, laugh and dance outside the walls of the houses in cities, without garlands and unguents, singing while drunk obscene songs of diverse kinds that are as musical as the bray of the ass or the bleat of the camel. In intercourse they are absolutely without any restraint, and in all other matters they act as they like. Maddened with drink, they call upon one another, using many endearing epithets. Addressing many drunken exclamations to their husbands and lords, the fallen women among the Vahikas, without observing restrictions even on sacred days, give themselves up to dancing. 
The Prasthalas, the Madras, the Gandharas, the Arattas, those called Khasas, the Vasatis, the Sindhus and the Sauviras are almost as blamable in their practices.'" 
Karna Parva Section 44
As you can see from the above text, there were many areas in Ancient India that practiced extramarital and premarital sex, like the Prasthalas, Madras, Sakalas, Gandharas, Arattas, Khasas, Vasatis, Sindhus and Sauviras. This shows that despite the reduction in extramarital sex and premarital sex from the ancient times as described by Pandu to Kunti, extramarital and premarital sex was still common even during Mahabharatha time, in some areas of India. Karna also talks about how the Madra women have sex with their preceptors (which according to him was disgusting):
The Madrakas are regarded on Earth as the dirt of every nation. So the Madra woman is called the dirt of the whole female sex. They that have for their practices the drinking of spirits, the violation of the beds of their preceptors, the destruction of the embryo by procuring miscarriage, and the robbing of other people's wealth, there is no sin that they have not. 
Karna Parva Section 45
All this evidence shows that in ancient India, before Mahabharatha time, men and women were free and could have sex with one another as they wished. The woman was not bound to a single man. However, soon the concept of marriage arose, and the freedom of women started getting restricted. By Mahabharatha time, there were many regions controlled by orthodox brahmins, where premarital and extramarital sex was looked down upon (such as Hastinapura, Anga Desh, Panchalas). However, there were still many areas where men and women mingled freely and had premarital and extramarital sex, like the Prasthalas, Madras, Sakalas, Gandharas, Arattas, Khasas, Vasatis, Sindhus and Sauviras. Therefore, the claim made by the author of the Daily Bhaskar article is true!

Slide 2 - The Author Writes...
In chapter 63 of Adiparva in Mahabharat, open sex between Rishi Parashar and Satyavati Matsyangandha has been described. Also, in the 104th chapter of Adiparva, it is mentioned that son of Utthat, Dirghtama started having sex with a woman in front of all the people.
Slide 2 - My Analysis... 

These claims are mostly true. I have previously described how Satyavati and Rishi Parasharaa had open sex. For those that missed it, please read below. I am reposting the text that talks about them having open sex:
"The fish-smelling daughter of the Apsara in her piscatorial form was then given by the king unto the fishermen, saying, 'Let this one be thy daughter.' That girl was known by the name of Satyavati. And gifted with great beauty and possessed of every virtue, she of agreeable smiles, owing to contact with fishermen, was for some time of the fishy smell. Wishing to serve her (foster) father she plied a boat on the waters of the Yamuna.
"While engaged in this vocation, Satyavati was seen one day by the great Rishi Parasara, in course of his wanderings. As she was gifted with great beauty, an object of desire even with an anchorite, and of graceful smiles, the wise sage, as soon as he beheld her, desired to have her. And that bull amongst Munis addressed the daughter of Vasu of celestial beauty and tapering thighs, saying, 'Accept my embraces, O blessed one!' Satyavati replied, 'O holy one, behold the Rishis standing on either bank of the river. Seen by them, how can I grant thy wish?' 
"Thus addressed by her, the ascetic thereupon created a fog (which existed not before and) which enveloped the whole region in darkness. And the maiden, beholding the fog that was created by the great Rishi wondered much. And the helpless one became suffused with the blushes of bashfulness. And she said, 'O holy one, note that I am a maiden under the control of my father. O sinless one, by accepting your embraces my virginity will be sullied. O best of Brahmanas, my virginity being sullied, how shall I, O Rishi, be able to return home? Indeed, I shall not then be able to bear life. Reflecting upon all this, O illustrious one, do that which should be done.' That best of Rishis, gratified with all she said, replied, "Thou shall remain a virgin even if thou grantest my wish. And, O timid one, O beauteous lady, solicit the boon that thou desirest. O thou of fair smiles, my grace hath never before proved fruitless.' Thus addressed, the maiden asked for the boon that her body might emit a sweet scent (instead of the fish-odour that it had). And the illustrious Rishi thereupon granted that wish of her heart. 
"Having obtained her boon, she became highly pleased, and her season immediately came. And she accepted the embraces of that Rishi of wonderful deeds. And she thenceforth became known among men by the name of Gandhavati (the sweet-scented one). And men could perceive her scent from the distance of a yojana. And for this she was known by another name which was Yojanagandha (one who scatters her scent for a yojana all around). And the illustrious Parasara, after this, went to his own asylum.
Adi Parva Section LXIII 
As you can see from the passage above, Satyavati and Rishi Parasharaa met when Satyavati was riding a boat in the Yamuna River. After their conversation, they had sex. Since they met when Satyavati was riding the boast, they must have had sex in the open, either while on the boat in the Yamuna River, or off the boat, on the coast of the Yamuna River.

The author also mentions Dirghatama having open sex with with a woman. To see if this claim is true, I will post everything that is mentioned about Dirghatama, from his birth, to the later part of his life.

So lets start with his birth... Dirghatama's father was Utathya. Utathya had a wife named Mamata, that he really loved, and a younger brother, named Vrihaspati, the priest of the celestials. One day, when Mamata was pregnant with Dirghatama, Vrihaspati approached her, and asked her for sex. She refused as she was already pregnant with Dirghatama. Vrihaspati could not control his sexual desire, and raped his elder sister in law, Mamata. He penetrated his elder sister in law, but soon found that the baby Dirghatama's feet were blocking the passage of his semen into his elder sister in law. Seeing this, he angrily cursed the baby that he will be born blind, and as a result, Dirghatama was born blind.

Kisari Mohan Ganguly found this incident so shameful that he translated some of the verses into Latin instead of Sanskrit. Anybody that knows Latin will be able to understand these verses:

"In this connection there is another old history that I will recite to you. There was in olden days a wise Rishi of the name of Utathya. He had a wife of the name Mamata whom he dearly loved. One day Utathya's younger brother Vrihaspati, the priest of the celestials, endued with great energy, approached Mamata. The latter, however, told her husband's younger brother--that foremost of eloquent men--that she had conceived from her connection with his elder brother and that, therefore, he should not then seek for the consummation of his wishes. She continued, 'O illustrious Vrihaspati, the child that I have conceived hath studied in his mother's womb the Vedas with the six AngasSemen tuum frustra perdi non potest. How can then this womb of mine afford room for two children at a time? Therefore, it behoveth thee not to seek for the consummation of thy desire at such a time. Thus addressed by her, Vrihaspati, though possessed of great wisdom, succeeded not in suppressing his desire. Quum auten jam cum illa coiturus esset, the child in the womb then addressed him and said, 'O father, cease from thy attempt. There is no space here for two. O illustrious one, the room is small. I have occupied it first. Semen tuum perdi non potest. It behoveth thee not to afflict me.' But Vrihaspati without listening to what that child in the womb said, sought the embraces of Mamata possessing the most beautiful pair of eyes. Ille tamen Muni qui in venture erat punctum temporis quo humor vitalis jam emissum iret providens, viam per quam semen intrare posset pedibus obstruxit. Semen ita exhisum, excidit et in terram projectumest. And the illustrious Vrihaspati, beholding this, became indignant, and reproached Utathya's child and cursed him, saying, 'Because thou hast spoken to me in the way thou hast at a time of pleasure that is sought after by all creatures, perpetual darkness shall overtake thee.' And from this curse of the illustrious Vrishaspati Utathya's child who was equal unto Vrihaspati in energy, was born blind and came to be
called Dirghatamas (enveloped in perpetual darkness).
Adi Parva Section CIV 
Despite being born blind, Dirghatama obtained a brahmin maiden named Pradweshi, as a wife. From this wife, he had many children, all of whom were not virtuous. Dirghatama then learnt from Surabhi's son the practices of brahmins, and began to live like one in an asylum, with other Munis. However, he would often see sin in acts where there was no sin, and the Munis got tired of this. They then abandoned Dirghatama. Similarly, his wife and children also decided to abandon him. Seeing that his wife wanted to abandon him, he made a rule that a woman will only be able to have one husband, and will not be allowed to enjoy life when the husband dies. He also banned adultery. Seeing him make this rule, his wife got pissed off and asked her children to throw him in the Ganga River:
And the wise Dirghatamas, possessed of a knowledge of the Vedas, though born blind, succeeded yet by virtue of his learning, in obtaining for a wife a young and handsome Brahmana maiden of the name of Pradweshi. And having married her, the illustrious Dirghatamas, for the expansion of Utathya's race, begat upon her several children with Gautama as their eldest. These children, however, were all given to covetousness and folly. The virtuous and illustrious Dirghatamas possessing complete mastery over the Vedas, soon after learnt from Surabhi's son the practices of their order and fearlessly betook himself to those practices, regarding them with reverence. (For shame is the creature of sin and can never be where there is purity of intention). Then those best of Munis that dwelt in the same asylum, beholding him transgress the limits of propriety became indignant, seeing sin where sin was not. And they said, 'O, this man, transgresseth the limit of propriety. No longer doth he deserve a place amongst us. Therefore, shall we all cast this sinful wretch off.' And they said many other things regarding the Muni Dirghatamas. And his wife, too, having obtained children, became indignant with him. 
"The husband then addressing his wife Pradweshi, said, 'Why is it that thou also hast been dissatisfied with me?' His wife answered, 'The husband is called the Bhartri because he supporteth the wife. He is called Pati because he protecteth her. But thou art neither, to me! O thou of great ascetic merit, on the other hand, thou hast been blind from birth, it is I who have supported thee and thy children. I shall not do so in future.' 
"Hearing these words of his wife, the Rishi became indignant and said unto her and her children, 'Take me unto the Kshatriyas and thou shalt then be rich.' His wife replied (by saying), 'I desire not wealth that may be procured by thee, for that can never bring me happiness. O best of Brahmanas, do as thou likest. I shall not be able to maintain thee as before.' At these words of his wife, Dirghatamas said, 'I lay down from this day as a rule that every woman shall have to adhere to one husband for her life. Be the husband dead or alive, it shall not be lawful for a woman to have connection with another. And she who may have such connection shall certainly be regarded as fallen. A woman without husband shall always be liable to be sinful. And even if she be wealthy she shall not be able to enjoy that wealth truly. Calumny and evil report shall ever dog her.' Hearing these words of her husband Pradweshi became very angry, and commanded her sons, saying, 'Throw him into the waters of Ganga!' And at the command of their mother, the wicked Gautama and his brothers, those slaves of covetousness and folly, exclaiming, 'Indeed, why should we support this old man?--'tied the Muni to a raft and committing him to the mercy of the stream returned home without compunction.
Then, Dirghatama floated on the Ganga for a long time, and passed many kingdoms. He was eventually saved by a king named Vali. This king then chose Dirghatama to father his children. So, he asked his queen Sudeshna to go to Dirghatama and have sex with him. The queen realized he was blind, and sent her Sudra servant to Dirghatama. Dirghatama had sex with this Sudra servant and had 11 children from her. Then, Dirghatama told Vali that these 11 children are his, not Vali's as the queen had sent a Sudra servant to him, and had not come herself. Then Vali sent his queen Sudeshna to Dirghatama. Dirghatama had sex with her and as a result she and Vali got 5 children:
The blind old man drifting along the stream on that raft, passed through the territories of many kings. One day a king named Vali conversant with every duty went to the Ganges to perform his ablutions. And as the monarch was thus engaged, the raft to which the Rishi was tied, approached him. And as it came, the king took the old man. The virtuous Vali, ever devoted to truth, then learning who the man was that was thus saved by him, chose him for raising up offspring. And Vali said, 'O illustrious one, it behoveth thee to raise upon my wife a few sons that shall be virtuous and wise.' Thus addressed, the Rishi endued with great energy, expressed his willingness. Thereupon king Vali sent his wife Sudeshna unto him. But the queen knowing that the latter was blind and old went not unto him, she sent unto him her nurse. And upon that Sudra woman the virtuous Rishi of passions under full control begat eleven children of whom Kakshivat was the eldest. And beholding those eleven sons with Kakshivat as the eldest, who had studied all the Vedasand who like Rishis were utterers of Brahma and were possessed of great power, king Vali one day asked the Rishi saying, 'Are these children mine?' The Rishi replied, 'No, they are mine. Kakshivat and others have been begotten by me upon a Sudra woman. Thy unfortunate queen Sudeshna, seeing me blind and old, insulted me by not coming herself but sending unto me, instead, her nurse.' The king then pacified that best of Rishis and sent unto him his queen Sudeshna. The Rishi by merely touching her person said to her, 'Thou shalt have five children named Anga, Vanga, Kalinga, Pundra and Suhma, who shall be like unto Surya (Sun) himself in glory. And after their names as many countries shall be known on earth. It is after their names that their dominions have come to be called Anga, Vanga, Kalinga, Pundra and Suhma.'
Adi Parva Section CIV 
Dirghatama did not have sex with the Sudra woman or Queen Sudeshna in the open. Most likely it was in a small hut of his or in a palace chamber. But this event along with the Satyavati-Parashara incident shows that people did not find it shameful to have sex in the open, and would do so if they wanted to. It also shows that people would often ask their wives to have sex with brahmin men to have children with "high blood".

Slide 3 - The Author Writes...
Kautbik sex (incest) is mentioned in ancient texts. It is mentioned 'Harivansh' that the daughter of sage Vasishta, Shatrupa believed him to be her husband and therefore used to have sex with him. In the same grantha it is mentioned that Daksha gave her daughter to his father, Brahmadev and Narada was born.
As mentioned in Haribhavishya, Indra dev had sex with his great grandson’s (Janmejay) wife Vapushtma. 
Slide 3 - My Analysis... 

I have never heard of incest between Vasishta and Shatrupa, or between Daksha's daughter and Brahma or between Indra and Vapushtma. If these are from Puranas then they cannot be considered very authentic as Puranas were not written by contemporaries of these people. The author should have provided the section of the text that he/she is referring to.

But incest was indeed common during Mahabharatha times. For example, Subhadra and Arjuna were cousins and married one another. Subhadra was the daughter of Vasudeva, and Arjuna was the son of Kunti. Vasudeva and Kunti were siblings.

Slide 4 - The Author Writes...
In Mahabharat’s Adiparva, it is said that if an unmarried woman expresses her desire to have sex, it should be fulfilled. If her wish is not fulfilled, it means death of religion. Ulupi clearly says to Arjuna that to satisfy a woman, it not against religion to sleep with her for one night.
Slide 4 - My Analysis... 

This claim is correct. After Bhima kills Hidimb, his sister Hidimba says that she is attracted to Bhima and that he should marry her fulfill her (sexual) desire:

"Vaisampayana continued, 'Then Hidimva reverentially saluting Kunti and her son Yudhishthira also, said, with joined palms, 'O revered lady, thou knowest the pangs that women are made to feel at the hands of the deity of love. Blessed dame, these pangs, of which Bhimasena hath been the cause, are torturing me. I had hitherto borne these insufferable pangs, waiting for the time (when thy son could assuage them). That time is now come, when I expected I would be made happy. Casting off my friends and relations and the usage of my race, I have, O blessed lady, chosen this son of thine, this tiger among men, as my husband. I tell thee truly, O illustrious lady, that if I am cast off by that hero or by thee either, I will no longer bear this life of mine. Therefore, O thou of the fairest complexion, it behoveth thee to show me mercy, thinking me either as very silly or thy obedient slave. O illustrious dame, unite me with this thy son, my husband. Endued as he is with the form of a celestial, let me go taking him with me wherever I like. Trust me, O blessed lady, I will again bring him back unto you all. When you think of me I will come to you immediately and convey you whithersoever ye may command. I will rescue you from all dangers and carry you across inaccessible and uneven regions. I will carry you on my back whenever ye desire to proceed with swiftness. O, be gracious unto me and make Bhima accept me. It hath been said that in a season of distress one should protect one's life by any means. He, that seeketh to discharge that duty should not scruple about the means. He, that in a season of distress keepeth his virtue, is the foremost of virtuous men. Indeed, distress is the greatest danger to virtue and virtuous men. It is virtue that protecteth life; therefore is virtue called the giver of life. Hence the means by which virtue or the observance of a duty is secured can never be censurable.'
Adi Parva Section CLVII
Then hearing what Hidimba says, Yuddhistira responds:
"Hearing these words of Hidimva, Yudhishthira said. 'It is even so, O Hidimva, as thou sayest. There is no doubt of it. But, O thou of slender waist, thou must act even as thou hast said. Bhima will, after he hath washed himself and said his prayers and performed the usual propitiatory rites, pay his attentions to thee till the sun sets. Sport thou with him as thou likest during the day, O thou that art endued with the speed of the mind! But thou must bring back Bhimasena hither every day at nightfall.' 
Adi Parva Section CLVII
As you can see, Yuddhistira, who is at times considered to be Dharma himself, says that Hidimba's sexual desire should be fulfilled by Bhima. He allows her to sport with Bhima for the rest of the day, thus allowing her to fulfill her sexual desire. So, yes, if a woman desires to have sex with a man, the man should relieve her from this distress by having sex with her. Relieving one from distress is dharma, even if the distress arises from sexual desire.

What the author said about Uloopi is also correct. One day, when Arjuna went to the Ganga River to perform his ablutions, Ulupi, the daughter of the king of the Nagas saw him and got sexually attracted to him. She carried him into the beautiful mansion of her father, where a sacrificial fire was ready for Arjuna. Seeing that, Arjuna performed his sacrificial rites... Then, after the sacrifice was over, he asked Ulupi for her introduction. She introduced herself, and said that she was sexually attracted to him, and then asked him for sex (read a one night stand). Arjuna was attracted by Ulupi's beauty and wanted to fulfill her sexual desire, but says that he is required of remain a brahmacharya for 12 years, on Yuddhistira's order... Ulupi says that he can consider having sex with her as his duty to save her life and relieve her of her distress (that arose from sexual desire for Arjuna). Arjuna agrees and has sex with her that night.

One day that bull amongst the Pandavas, while residing in that region in the midst of those Brahmanas, descended (as usual) into the Ganges to perform his ablutions. After his ablutions had been over, and after he had offered oblations of water unto his deceased ancestors, he was about to get up from the stream to perform his sacrificial rites before the fire, when the mighty-armed hero, O king, was dragged into the bottom of the water by Ulupi, the daughter of the king of the Nagas, urged by the god of desire. And it so happened that the son of Pandu was carried into the beautiful mansion of Kauravya, the king of the Nagas. Arjuna saw there a sacrificial fire ignited for himself. Beholding that fire, Dhananjaya, the son of Kunti performed his sacrificial rites with devotion. And Agni was much gratified with Arjuna for the fearlessness with which that hero had poured libations into his manifest form. After he had thus performed his rites before the fire, the son of Kunti, beholding the daughter of the king of the Nagas, addressed her smilingly and said, 'O handsome girl, what an act of rashness hast thou done. O timid one! Whose is this beautiful region, who art thou and whose daughter?' 
"Hearing these words of Arjuna, Ulupi answered, 'There is a Naga of the name of Kauravya, born in the line of Airavata. I am, O prince, the daughter of that Kauravya, and my name is Ulupi. O tiger among men, beholding thee descend into the stream to perform thy ablutions, I was deprived of reason by the god of desire. O sinless one, I am still unmarried. Afflicted as I am by the god of desire on account of thee, O thou of Kuru's race, gratify me today by giving thyself up to me.' 
"Arjuna replied, 'Commanded by king Yudhishthira, O amiable one, I am undergoing the vow of Brahmacharin for twelve years. I am not free to act in any way I like. But, O ranger of the waters, I am still willing to do thy pleasure (if I can). I have never spoken an untruth in my life. Tell me, therefore, O Naga maid, how I may act so that, while doing thy pleasure, I may not be guilty of any untruth or breach of duty.' 
"Ulupi answered, 'I know, O son of Pandu, why thou wanderest over the earth, and why thou hast been commanded to lead the life of a Brahmacharin by the superior. Even this was the understanding to which all of you had been pledged, viz., that amongst you all owning Drupada's daughter as your common wife, he who would from ignorance enter the room where one of you would be sitting with her, should lead the life of a Brahmacharin in the woods for twelve years. The exile of any one amongst you, therefore, is only for the sake of Draupadi. Thou art but observing the duty arising from that vow. Thy virtue cannot sustain any diminution (by acceding to my solicitation). Then again, O thou of large eyes, it is a duty to relieve the distressed. Thy virtue suffereth no diminution by relieving me. Oh, if (by this act), O Arjuna, thy virtue doth suffer a small diminution, thou wilt acquire great merit by saving my life. Know me for thy worshipper, O Partha! Therefore, yield thyself up to me! Even this, O lord, is the opinion of the wise (viz., that one should accept a woman that wooeth). If thou do not act in this way, know that I will destroy myself. O thou of mighty arms, earn great merit by saving my life. I seek thy shelter, O best of men! Thou protectest always, O son of Kunti, the afflicted and the masterless. I seek thy protection, weeping in sorrow. I woo thee, being filled with desire. Therefore, do what is agreeable to me. It behoveth thee to gratify my wish by yielding thy self up to me.' 
"Vaisampayana said, 'Thus addressed by the daughter of the king of the Nagas, the son of Kunti did everything she desired, making virtue his motive. The mighty Arjuna, spending the night in the mansion of the Naga rose with the sun in the morning. Accompanied by Ulupi he came back from the palace of Kauravya to the region where the Ganges entereth the plains. The chaste Ulupi, taking her leave there, returned to her own abode.
Adi Parva Section CCXVI
This evidence suggests that the author of the Daily Bhaskar article is correct. If a woman is facing any sort of distress, it is a duty of a man to relieve her from this distress. If the distress she is facing is a result of sexual desire for the man, the man should relieve her from this distress by having sex with her. That is dharma!

Slide 5 - The Author Writes...
When Urvashi told Arjuna that if the Paurva Vansh’a any son or grandson wants to have sex with any woman of her family including her, it is not insulting religion. However, Arjuna did not accept it and Urvashi called him impotent.
It is also mentioned in religious scriptures that sage Agastya had kept his daughter with the King of Vidarbha and when she reached age of marriage, he married his own daughter. 
Slide 5 - My Analysis... 

The author of the article should mention the scripture and section in the scripture where it is mentioned that Rishi Agastya had married his own daughter. Until that is done, this claim cannot be accepted.

However, what the author wrote about Urvashi is correct. Urvashi was a resident of Uttara Kuru, ruled by Indra. In Uttara Kuru, the women were free and could mingle with men as they wished. They were free! So, after Arjuna says that Urvashi is a mother to him, Urvashi says that it makes no difference to her, and that him having sex with her would not involve any sin. But when Arjuna continues to refuse to have sex with her, she gets angry and curses him to be an Eunuch:

Vaisampayana said, 'Having thus sent away the Gandharva successful in his mission, Urvasi of luminous smiles, moved by the desire of possessing Phalguna, took a bath. And having performed her ablutions, she decked herself in charming ornaments and splendid garlands of celestial odour. And inflamed by the god of love, and her heart pierced through and through by the shafts shot by Manmatha keeping in view the beauty of Arjuna, and her imagination wholly taken up by the thoughts of Arjuna, she mentally sported with him on a wide and excellent bed laid over with celestial sheets. And when the twilight had deepened and the moon was up, that Apsara of high hips sent out for the mansions of Arjuna. And in that mood and with her crisp, soft and long braids decked with bunches of flowers, she looked extremely beautiful. With her beauty and grace, and the charm of the motions of her eye-brows and of her soft accents, and her own moon like face, she seemed to tread, challenging the moon himself. And as she proceeded, her deep, finely tapering bosoms, decked with a chain of gold and adorned with celestial unguents and smeared with fragrant sandal paste, began to tremble. And in consequence of the weight of her bosoms, she was forced to slightly stoop forward at every step, bending her waist exceedingly beautiful with three folds. And her loins of faultless shape, the elegant abode of the god of love, furnished with fair and high and round hips and wide at their lower part as a hill, and decked with chains of gold, and capable of shaking the saintship of anchorites, being decked with thin attire, appeared highly graceful. And her feet with fair suppressed ankles, and possessing flat soles and straight toes of the colour of burnished copper and dorsum high and curved like tortoise back and marked by the wearing of ornaments furnished with rows of little bells, looked exceedingly handsome. And exhilarated with a little liquor which she had taken, and excited by desire, and moving in diverse attitudes and expressing a sensation of delight, she looked more handsome than usual. And though heaven abounded with many wonderful objects, yet when Urvasi proceeded in this manner, the Siddhas and Charanas and Gandharvas regarded her to be the handsomest object they had cast their eyes upon. And the upper half of her body clad in an attire of fine texture and cloudy hues, she looked resplendent like a digit of the moon in the firmament shrouded by fleecy clouds. And endued with the speed of the winds or the mind, she of luminous smiles soon reached the mansion of Phalguna, the son of Pandu. And, O best of men, Urvasi of beautiful eyes, having arrived at the gate of Arjuna's abode, sent word through the keeper in attendance. And (on receiving permission), she soon entered that brilliant and charming palace. But, O monarch, upon beholding her at night in his mansion, Arjuna, with a fearstricken heart, stepped up to receive her with respect and as soon as he saw her, the son of Pritha, from modesty, closed his eyes. And saluting her, he offered the Apsara such worship as is offered unto a superior. And Arjuna said, 'O thou foremost of the Apsaras, I reverence thee by bending my head down. O lady, let me know thy commands. I wait upon thee as thy servant.'" 
Vaisampayana continued, 'Hearing these words of Phalguna, Urvasi became deprived of her senses. And she soon represented unto Arjuna all that had passed between her and the Gandharva, Chitrasena. And she said, 'O best of men, I shall tell thee all that hath passed between me and Chitrasena, and why I have come hither. On account of thy coming here, O Arjuna, Mahendra had convened a large and charming assembly, in which celestial festivities were held. Unto that assembly came, O best of men, the Rudras and the Adityas and the Aswins and the Vasus. And there came also numbers of great Rishis and royal sages and Siddhas and Charanas and Yakshas and great Nagas. And, O thou of expansive eyes, the members of the assembly resplendent as fire or the sun or the moon, having taken their seats according to rank, honour, and prowess, O son of Sakra, the Gandharvas began to strike the Vinas and sing charming songs of celestial melody. And, O perpetuator of the Kuru race, the principal Apsaras also commenced to dance. Then, O son of Pritha, thou hadst looked on me only with a steadfast gaze. When that assembly of the celestials broke, commanded by thy father, the gods went away to their respective places. And the principal Apsaras also went away to their abodes, and others also, O slayer of foes, commanded by thy father and obtaining his leave. It was then that Chitrasena sent to me by Sakra, and arriving at my abode. O thou of eyes like lotus leaves, he addressed me, saying, 'O thou of the fairest complexion, I have been sent unto thee by the chief of the celestials. Do thou something that would be agreeable to Mahendra and myself and to thyself also. O thou of fair hips, seek thou to please Arjuna, who is brave in battle even like Sakra himself, and who is always possessed of magnanimity.' Even these, O son of Pritha, were his words. Thus, O sinless one, commanded by him and thy father also, I come to thee in order to wait upon thee, O slayer of foes. My heart hath been attracted by thy virtues, and am already under the influence of the god of love. And, O hero, even this is my wish, and I have cherished it for ever!" 
Vaisampayana continued, "While in heaven, hearing her speak in this strain, Arjuna was overcome with bashfulness. And shutting his ears with his hands, he said, 'O blessed lady, fie on my sense of hearing, when thou speakest thus to me. For, O thou of beautiful face, thou art certainly equal in my estimation unto the wife of a superior. Even as Kunti here even this is my wish, and I have cherished it for ever!"[Some text is obviously missing here--JBH] of high fortune or Sachi the queen of Indra, art thou to me, O auspicious one, of this there is no doubt! That I had gazed particularly at thee, O blessed one, is true. There was a reason for it. I shall truly tell it to thee, O thou of luminous smiles! In the assembly I gazed at thee with eyes expanded in delight, thinking, 'Even this blooming lady is the mother of the Kaurava race.' O blessed Apsara, it behoveth thee not to entertain other feelings towards me, for thou art superior to my superiors, being the parent of my race.'" 
"Hearing these words of Arjuna, Urvasi answered, saying, 'O son of The chief of the celestials, we Apsaras are free and unconfined in our choice. It behoveth thee not, therefore, to esteem me as thy superior. The sons and grandsons of Puru's race, that have come hither in consequence of ascetic merit do all sport with us, without incurring any sin. Relent, therefore, O hero, it behoveth thee not to send me away. I am burning with desire. I am devoted to thee. Accept me, O thou giver of proper respect.'"
"Arjuna replied, 'O beautiful lady of features perfectly faultless, listen. I truly tell thee. Let the four directions and the transverse directions, let also the gods listen. O sinless one, as Kunti, or Madri, or Sachi, is to me, so art thou, the parent of my race, an object of reverence to me. Return, O thou of the fairest complexion: I bend my head unto thee, and prostrate myself at thy feet. Thou deservest my worship as my own mother; and it behoveth thee to protect me as a son.'" 
Vaisampayana continued, "Thus addressed by Partha, Urvasi was deprived of her senses by wrath. Trembling with rage, and contracting her brows, she cursed Arjuna, saying, 'Since thou disregardest a woman come to thy mansion at the command of thy father and of her own motion--a woman, besides, who is pierced by the shafts of Kama, therefore, O Partha, thou shalt have to pass thy time among females unregarded, and as a dancer, and destitute of manhood and scorned as a eunuch.'"
Vana Parva Section XLVI 
Slide 6 - The Author Writes...
In the tenth mandal of Rig Veda, the sexual conversation between Yam and Yami is mentioned. Here, Yami expresses her desire to have sex with her own brother. When Yam refuses to do so, she insists and says that a sister remaining unsatisfied despite her brother being around, so what is her brother’s use?  
Slide 6 - My Analysis... 

This claim is correct. Below I am posting what Rig Veda has to say regarding the conversation between Yami and Yama:

7 I, Yami, am possessed by love of Yama, that I may rest on the same couch beside him.
I as a wife would yield me to my husband. Like car-wheels let us speed to meet each other.
8 They stand not still, they never close their eyelids, those sentinels of Gods who wander round us.
Not me-go quickly, wanton, with another, and hasten like a chariot wheel to meet him.
9 May SÅ«rya's eye with days and nights endow him, and ever may his light spread out before him.
In heaven and earth the kindred Pair commingle. On Yam! be the unbrotherly act of Yama.
10 Sure there will come succeeding times when brothers and sisters will do acts unmeet for kinsfolk.
Not me, O fair one,—seek another husband, and make thine arm a pillow for thy consort.
11 Is he a brother when no lord is left her? Is she a sister when Destruction cometh?
Forced by my love these many words I utter. Come near, and hold me in thy close embraces.
12 I will not fold mine arms about thy body: they call it sin when one comes near his sister.
Not me,—prepare thy pleasures with another: thy brother seeks not this from thee, O fair one.
13 Alas! thou art indeed a weakling, Yama we find in thee no trace of heart or spirit. As round the tree the woodbine clings, another will cling albout thee girt as with a girdle.
14 Embrace another, Yami; let another, even as the woodbine rings the tree, enfold thee. Win thou his heart and let him win thy fancy, and he shall form with thee a blest alliance.
Riga Veda Book 10 Hymn X. Yama Yami.

So, as you can see, Yami asks her brother to marry and have sex with her. When he refuses, Yami says "Is he a brother when no lord is left her?". Yami asks her brother that when no Lord is left for her, Yama should come up and become her Lord. If he does not do that, then what is the purpose of being a brother? Yama continues to refuse to be her Lord and to have sex with her. Seeing Yama's refusal to have sex with his sister, he is called a "weakling" by Yami, and Yami is then asked to select a more worthy Lord, by Yama. Although hymn 10 of Rig Veda Mandal 10 does not explicitly mention how the Yama-Yami debate had ended (i.e. it remains unclear, at the end of the hymn, what conclusion the twins agreed upon. Did Yama and Yami both agree to not have sex, or did the former succumb to the latter's wishes?), we are given a hint regarding how their debate would have ended, in Rig Veda Mandal 10, Hymn 13, Verse 4. In verse 10.13.4 of Rig Veda (translation by Stephanie Jamison and Joel Brereton given below), we are told that Yama had obtained offspring, thereby leading Jamison and Brereton to conclude that Yama had eventually succumbed to Yami's desire, accepted to be her Lord (husband), and had subsequently produced offspring through her:
For the sake of the gods he chose death and for the sake of offspring he did not choose immortality. They [=gods] made Br̥haspati, the seer, into their sacrifice. Yama left behind his own dear body (as offspring).
Furthermore, please take note of verse 10.10.10. A portion of the translation by Griffth reads (Yami's narrative) "Sure there will come succeeding times when brothers and sisters will do acts unmeet for kinsfolk". This suggests that when trying to tell Yami that he cannot have sex with her, Yama says that the morality of the period they were living in did not allow incestuous relationships, but instead it will be allowed in the future, hence Yami should not be eager for incest at this particular moment. Of course Yama later succumbed to Yami's desires, but this speech of Yama shows that from the Rig Vedic period onwards, incest was allowed. Prior to that, it was prohibited for morality reasons. Yama is therefore a symbol of the previous (pre-Vedic generation), and Yami is a symbol of the future (Vedic) generation. The Yama-Yami dialogues display the interplay between the previous and future generation, and how the previous generation (Yama) must succumb to the changes required by the future generation (Yami). However, acceptance of the underlying symbolism does not mean that we can reject the literal narrative, which suggests that Yama had a sexual relationship with his sister Yami, and that from the Rig Vedic period onwards, incest was allowed. Both the literal narrative and the underlying symbolism go hand in hand... Hence, in the Vedic period, brother-sister sexual relations were not looked down upon. If a sister had sexual desire for her brother, it was the brother's duty to fulfill this sexual desire of his sister.

Slide 7 - The Author Writes...
Mahabharta mentiones in Adiparva that having sex with any women is not bad and is a normal behavior. Relationships are names given to know people.
Slide 7 - My Analysis...

Yes, Mahabharatha does hint that having sex is a normal behavior. Just refer to how Arjuna accepts Ulupi's sexual desire and mates with her, and how Bhima accepts Hidimba's sexual desire and mates with her. Also, Arjuna has sex with Uttaraa despite being her teacher. Madra women would also have sex with their preceptors. Krishna had sex with Draupadi.... Sex was not a taboo back then, but was accepted as something that was normal.

The author also writes "relationships are names given to know people". This statement is debatable... It all depends on the region in which the author is referring to. In places like Uttara Kuru, and other parts of India (such as those Karna mentioned in his speech with Shalya) where women were free and could mate as they wished, sexual relationships with relatives (such as mother-son) was not uncommon. However, in places where women were not free, like Hastinapura, there was regulation for whom one could marry and have sex with. For example, although Arjuna could have sex with his cousin Subhadra, he could not have sex with his mother. Being brought up in such an environment made him think it was morally wrong to have sex with a mother, and thats why he refused to have sex with Urvashi. So just to re-iterate, the value of a male-female relationship in determining if they are prohibited from having sex depends on the region we are talking about...

Slide 8 - The Author Writes...
Duryodhan had made Karna the king of Angdesh. In this desh, woman and children were sold.
Slide 8 - My Analysis...

Duryodhana was a prince at the time of the Rangbhoomi and had no control over Anga desh. Hence, he could not give that kingdom to Karna. Karna had inherited that kingdom from his father, Adiratha, who was the Suta king of the Angas. After Karna became king of the Angas, he allowed for the sale of women and children. During Karna's conversation with Shalya, the latter mentions this:

"'Shalya said, "The abandonment of the afflicted and the sale of wives and children are, O Karna, prevalent amongst the Angas whose king thou art. Recollecting those faults of thine that Bhishma recited on the occasion of the tale of Rathas and Atirathas, drive away thy wrath. Do not be angry. Brahmanas may be found everywhere; Kshatriyas may be found everywhere; so also Vaishyas and Shudras, O Karna, women of chastity and excellent vows may also be found everywhere. Everywhere men take delight in jesting with men and wounding one another. Lustful men also may be found everywhere. Everyone on every occasion can command skill in speaking of the faults of others. No one, however, knows his own faults, or knowing them, feels shame. Everywhere are kings devoted to their respective religions, and employed in chastising the wicked. Everywhere may be found virtuous men. It cannot be, O Karna, that all the people of a country are sinful. There are men in many countries that surpass the very gods by their behaviour.'" 
Karna Parva Section 45
In conclusion, most of the article on Daily Bhaskar is factually correct. Ancient India was indeed more open to sex than modern day India!

Friday, 25 November 2016

Pandu Was Never the King of Hastinapura!

Did the Pandavas really have the right to claim the throne of Hastinapura? Many would say, no they didn't as they were born by Kunti from Niyoga, and hence not the biological children of Pandu. Well that is true... But the same applies to Pandu, Dhritarashtra, and Vidura, as they were all children born from Niyoga, and not the biological children of Vichitravirya. Furthermore, the Kauravas were born by Gandhari, from Niyoga with Rishi Vyasa. So saying that Pandavas did not have a claim to throne of Hastinapura because they were born from Niyoga, is completely false, because if that were the basis for rejecting the Pandavas' claim to the throne of Hastinapura, then the same applies to Dhritarashtra, Pandu, Vidura, and the Kauravas. That would mean that there would be nobody in the generation of Pandavas eligible for occupying the throne of Hastinapura. Hence, that claim as the basis for not giving the Pandavas the throne of Hastinapura is faulty. In the time of Mahabharatha, children born from Niyoga were considered to be the same as biological children. This is substantiated by the speech of Pandu to Kunti in Adi Parva, when he tries to convince her for Niyoga. He says:

Adi Parva Section CXX

The religious institutes mention six kinds of sons that are heirs and kinsmen, and six other kinds that are not heirs but kinsmen. I shall speak of them presently. O Pritha, listen to me. They are: 1st, the son begotten by one's own self upon his wedded wife; 2nd, the son begotten upon one's wife by an accomplished person from motives of kindness; 3rd, the son begotten upon one's wife by a person for pecuniary consideration; 4th, the son begotten upon the wife after the husband's death; 5th, the maiden-born son; 6th, the son born of an unchaste wife; 7th, the son given; 8th, the son bought for a consideration; 9th, the son self-given; 10th, the son received with a pregnant bride; 11th, the brother's son; and 12th, the son begotten upon a wife of lower caste.

This brings us back to the original question: Did the Pandavas really have the right to claim the throne of Hastinapura? Well, many people would say that yes, they did have a claim on the throne as their father Pandu was the original king of Hastinapura, not Dhritarashtra, and hence Pandu's children should have first claim on the throne. Since Dhritarashtra was blind, he had no claim on the throne of Hastinapura, and hence, it went to Pandu. After Pandu, it should have gone to his children, the Pandavas... This entire claim rests on the fact that Pandu was the king of Hastinapura at one point in time. But what if I tell you that the claim has no basis as Pandu was never king of Hastinapura?

Yes, Pandu was never king of Hastinapura. Hence, the Pandavas had no biological claim on the throne of Hastinapura. The king of Hastinapura was and remained Dhritarashtra. In this post, I will provide some evidence to show that Pandu was never the king of Hastinapura.

All textual evidence in this post is from the Mahabharatha, translated into English by Kisari Mohan Ganguly. This 18-parva long epic can be accessed by the link below:

Dhritarashtra was always king and Pandu did the digvijaya for his elder brother and king, Dhritarashtra. So technically, the right to the kingdom (by virtue of birth) belongs to the Kauravas and not the pandavas. Below is some evidence from Mahabharatha that Pandu was not the king of Hastinapura. The evidence suggests that Dhritarashtra was always the king of Hastinapura, even before Pandu went to the woods:

"Vaisampayana said, 'Pandu, then, at the command of Dhritarashtra, offered the wealth he had acquired by the prowess of his arms to Bhishma, their grand-mother Satyavati and their mothers. And he sent portion of his wealth to Vidura also. And the virtuous Pandu gratified his other relatives also with similar presents. Then Satyavati and Bhishma and the Kosala princes were all gratified with the presents Pandu made out of the acquisitions of his prowess. And Ambalika in particular, upon embracing her son of incomparable prowess, became as glad as the queen of heaven upon embracing Jayanta. And with the wealth acquired by that hero Dhritarashtra performed five great sacrifices that were equal unto a hundred great horse-sacrifices, at all of which the offerings to Brahmanas were by hundreds and thousands.
"A little while after, O bull of Bharata's race, Pandu who had achieved a victory over sloth and lethargy, accompanied by his two wives, Kunti and Madri, retired into the woods. Leaving his excellent palace with its luxurious beds, he became a permanent inhabitant of the woods, devoting the whole of his time to the chase of the deer. And fixing his abode in a delightful and hilly region overgrown with huge sala trees, on the southern slope of the Himavat mountains, he roamed about in perfect freedom. The handsome Pandu with his two wives wandered in those woods like Airavata accompanied by two she-elephants. And the dwellers in those woods, beholding the heroic Bharata prince in the company of his wives, armed with sword, arrows, and bow, clad with his beautiful armour, and skilled in all excellent weapons, regarded him as the very god wandering amongst them.
"And at the command of Dhritarashtra, people were busy in supplying Pandu in his retirement with every object of pleasure and enjoyment.
As you can see above, Pandu distributed the wealth he obtained from the digvijaya to the others. If he was king, the wealth should have been his, and he would not need an order from Dhritarashtra to tell him whom to distrubute the wealth to. The truth is that the king was Dhritarashtra, and thats why he needed to wait for Dhritarashtra’s order to see whom to distribute the wealth to. Also Dhritarashtra performed 5 Ashwamedha sacrifices. If Pandu was king he would have performed these sacrifices, not Dhritarashtra…
After the digvijaya and the Ashwamedha sacrifices, Pandu went to the woods PERMANENTLY with his wives. This was not a small trip to the woods, like has shown in many TV shows. They went to the woods for good. If Pandu was king, he wouldnt be allowed to retire to the woods (when he doesn’t even have a heir). Also, even if he was king and decided to go to the woods, it would have been mentioned that Pandu gave the kingdom to his elder brother Dhritarashtra. But that is also not mentioned. This implies that Pandu was never king and therefore could go to the woods whenever he wanted (he was not bound to the kingdom). Instead, Dhritarashtra was king!
Also, note that Pandu went permanently to the woods. This means that this visit to the woods was not a small trip, but instead, permanent. So the decision to retire permanently to the woods was taken by Pandu even before killing Rishi Kindama! For this reason, the kingdom belonged to Dhritarashtra, and after him, it should have gone to Duryodhana. Hence, by birth, Pandavas had no right on the throne! They got the throne because they were more worthy (compared to Duryodhana) for the throne, and because they were a favorite among the masses. This pressurized Dhritarashtra to make Yuddhistira crown prince against his own wish. After all, emperor Bharatha gave the throne to someone that was not his own biological son, but more worthy to be a king than his biological sons!

The fact that Duryodhana did not get the kingdom explains his jealousy and hatred for the pandavas all his life!

Image result for pandu mahabharata br chopra

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

The Affair of Rama and Lakshmana with Shurpanakha!

Ok. So my past few posts have been on Mahabharatha. This post will be a bit different, as it will be on Ramayana... If you ask the average person who was the character responsible for the Ramayana war, it is likely that most would blame it not on Seetha, Rama or Ravana, but instead on Ravana's sister Shurpanakha. Indeed she does play a pivotal role in the epic. After all, she provokes her brother to go and take Seetha for himself. For that reason, most people consider her a selfish lady who was instrumental to the destruction of her brother. However, that is only half the story... The real reason why Shurpanakha went to Ravana for help was that she was angry at Rama and Lakshmana for what they did to her, and wanted some justice... I won't spoil the story now by revealing what actually transpired between Seetha, Rama, Lakshmana and Shurpanakha that caused Shurpanakha to go to Ravana for help and justice. However, what transpired between the four of them will be discussed in this post.

All textual evidence provided in this post is from Valmiki Ramayana, translated in English, by Desiraju Hanumanta Rao. This 6 kanda-long epic can be accessed by the link below:
We have always been hearing how the BAAAD Shurpanakha proposed marriage to the GOOOD Rama, and then when GOOOD Rama refused, BAAAD Shurpanakha proposed to GOOOD Lakshmana. When GOOOD Lakshmana refused, BAAAD Shurpanakha went to GOOOD Seetha to attack her, and was punished by GOOOD Lakshmana, through defacement. Thus, dharma was upheld...
However, this account is full of lies, and nothing could be further from the truth than this account of events. Below, I am analyzing the text from Valmiki Ramayana (Aranya Kanda Sections 17–18) to show what actually happened. Valmiki has tried hard to hide the actual events, but truth always prevails.
I will start off by presenting Valmiki’s biased nature and hatred towards Rakshasas. It is only natural for brahmins (like him) to hate Rakshasas, as they are against Vedic Dharma. Brahmins also hated mleechas, kambojas, yavanas, and sakas as they lie west of the Indus River (outside of the domains of ancient bharatvarsha), and do not follow Vedic Dharma. They are considered barbaric and uncivilized for this reason. Without further delay, I will present Valmiki’s biased nature when he describes Shurpanakha:
Lets go to the Aranya Kanda Section 17 (Valmiki Ramayana - Aranya Kanda - Sarga 17), where Shurpanakha makes entry into the epic. This is how Valmiki describes Shurpanakha’s appearance:
She that demoness who is facially unpleasant one with that pleasant faced one, pot bellied one with the slim-waisted one, wry-eyed one with the broad-eyed one, coppery-haired one with the neatly tressed one, ugly featured one with the charming featured one, brassy voiced one with the gentle voiced one, deplorably oldish one with the youngish one, crooked talker with the pleasant talker, ill-mannered one with the well-mannered one, uncouth one with couth, abominable one with amiable Rama spoke, besieged by Love-god. [3-17-9b, 11, 12a].
This clearly shows Valmiki’s hatred towards Rakshasas. I personally, don’t believe anybody can be that ugly. And also, since Shurpanakha is described as a guise changer, why wouldn’t she present herself in a more pretty way, to attract Rama to herself:
"I will tell you truth, Rama, nothing but truth, I am a guise-changing demoness named Shuurpanakha, and I will be freely moving in this forest in a solitary manner and unnerving all. [3-17-20, 21a]
Other textual evidence in Aranya Kanda Section 17–18 tells us that Shurpanakha was very pretty. She was even more pretty than Seetha. Lets examine that evidence below:
When Shurpanakha sees Rama, she instantly gets sexually attracted to him. She even requests Rama to leave Seetha and take her as a wife. This is what she says:
"Unlovely and unshapely is this one, such as she is, this Seetha is unworthy to be your wife, and I am the lone one worthy to be your wife, hence treat me as your wife. [3-17-26]
[Shurpanakha is calling Seetha unlovely and unshapely. If one with Seetha’s beauty (which itself is quite rare) is considered unlovely and unshapely by Shurpanakha, then it implies that Shurpanakha would be much much more beautiful than Seetha. Just imagine the levels of her beauty… A less beautiful woman would definitely not call a more beautiful woman ugly. Instead, a less beautiful woman would show jealousy towards a more beautiful woman. But that was not shown by Shurpanakha (towards Seetha). The fact that Shurpanakha calls Seetha ugly shows that Shurpanakha is actually more beautiful than Seetha. Also, if she was ugly, and was claiming that Seetha was “unlovely” and “unshapely”, she would have been laughed at by Rama and Lakshmana, and especially by Seetha]
Seeing Shurpanakha, Rama even gets sexually attracted to her, and inquires to know if she is single or not:
"I too wish to know about you. Whose wife are you? What is your name? Or, whose daughter are you? By the way, you are with a most enthralling body, and then you must be a demoness. [3-17-18].
[Rama describes Shurpanakha as having the most enthralling body. He was clearly attracted to Shurpanakha. Hence, Shurpanakha was not at all ugly. She was a very beautiful woman]
Then, in Section 18 of Aranya Kanda (Valmiki Ramayana - Aranya Kanda - Sarga 18), Rama says he is already married, and directs Shurpanakha to his brother Lakshmana, who he says is unmarried (a lie). This is what he says to Shurpanakha:
"You woo him, oh, broad-eyed one, this brother of mine as your husband like sunshine seeking the Mt. Meru, then oh, great-waisted one, you will be without a co-wife " So said Rama to that demoness. [3-18-5]
[This text shows that Rama lied to Shurpanakha that Lakshmana was unmarried. But more importantly, it shows that Shurpanakha had large eyes and a nice waist, just like Seetha. She was indeed beautiful]
So, Shurpanakha then approaches Lakshmana. She asks him to marry her. But Lakshmana declines and tells her to become the second wife of Rama:
"Oh, goggle eyed one, befitting to your complexion that is unblemished, you better become the wife of my brother Rama who is abounding in means, and on becoming the younger wife of that adorable one, you too will achieve your means and thus you will be happy. [3-18-10]
[This shows that Shurpanakha has a very nice complexion, and nice eyes. This also indicates that she is beautiful. If Lakshmana was mocking her, she would have realized instantly. If someone praises the beauty of an ugly woman, she would not be comfortable receiving the praise and would think the one praising is actually mocking her. So Lakshmana was indeed telling the truth]
"Oh, best complexioned one with best waist, is there any wiseacre to simply discard your kind of best personality, indeed, in preference to human females?" Lakshmana said so to Shuurpanakha. [3-18-12]
[This again shows that Shurpanakha had a good waist and a good complexion]
Furthermore, people of the Rakshasa tribe were said to be very beautiful people. When Jayadratha gets astonished seeing Draupadi’s beauty he sends Kotika to first find out who the beautiful lady is. This is what Kotika says to her:
Kotika said, "Excellent lady, who art thou that standest alone, leaning on a branch of the Kadamva tree at this hermitage and looking grand like a flame of fire blazing at night time, and fanned by the wind? Exquisitely beautiful as thou art, how is it that thou feelest not any fear in these forests? Methinks thou art a goddess, or a Yakshi, or a Danavi, or an excellent Apsara, or the wife of a Daitya, or a daughter of the Naga king, or a Rakshasi or the wife of Varuna, or of Yama, or of Soma, or of Kuvera, who, having assumed a human form, wanderest in these forests. Or, hast thou come from the mansions of Dhatri, or of Vidhatri, or of Savitri, or of Vibhu, or of Sakra?
The fact that Kotika asks her if she is a Rakshasii indicates that the Rakshasas were people with extraordinary beauty. Valmiki is biased and tried to portray them as ugly people again and again in the epic, Ramayana.
All this evidence clearly shows that Shurpanakha was very beautiful, and that Valmiki was biased and had a hatred for Rakshasas. So, when reading and analyzing what Valmiki says during the incident where Shurpanakha was defaced by Lakshmana, we must keep in mind Valmiki’s biased nature in reporting the incident. So now that I have addressed Valmiki’s biased nature towards Rakshasas, I will analyze what actually happened between Rama, Lakshmana, Shurpanakha, and Seetha, starting from Aranya Kanda Section 17. Prior to doing that, I would recommend you first read Aranya Kanda Sections 17-18 first, so that you can understand what is going on:
Now that you have completely read those sections, I will begin my analysis of those sections...
In Section 17, Shurpanakha is introduced, and she sees Rama along with Seetha, and Lakshmana. She instantly gets attracted to Rama, and asks him who he is. Rama (who is also attracted to her) replies to her, and and then asks her who she is. She, in her mind, would have mentally surrendered herself to Rama, at that moment, and hence did not want to say a single lie to Rama. This is very common with one whom a person is very dear to. They don’t want to lie to them at any costs, and it may hurt their beloved’s feelings, and distance their beloved from them. Shurpanakha had the same feeling, and therefore decided to speak only the truth to Rama:
"I too wish to know about you. Whose wife are you? What is your name? Or, whose daughter are you? By the way, you are with a most enthralling body, and then you must be a demoness. [3-17-18]. "What for you have come, either, you tell in actuality..." Thus Rama asked her. On hearing the words of Rama she that demoness wetted with love said these words. [3-17-19]. "I will tell you truth, Rama, nothing but truth, I am a guise-changing demoness named Shuurpanakha, and I will be freely moving in this forest in a solitary manner and unnerving all. [3-17-20, 21a].
[See how Rama describes Shurpanakha having an “enthralling body”. This is again evidence of Shurpanakha’s beauty. But more than that, it seems like Rama is also attracted to Shurpanakha (aftr seeing this enthralling body of hers), and then out of this attraction, he enquired about her identity. He possibly wanted to know if she is single or not (hence he asked the question, “whose wife are you”). Then Shurpanakha who had surrendered herself to Rama spoke only the truth to Rama. She was clearly in “love” with Rama]
Then, Shurpanakha tries to persuade Rama to leave Seetha for her. What is surprising is that Shurpanakha threatens to eat Seetha and Lakshmana in this section itself (even before Shurpanakha approaches Lakshmana):

"Shall I eat up this disfigured, dishonest, diabolical human female with a hallow stomach along with him, that brother of yours to make you free [3–17–27]
[I believe this verse has extreme importance in the sequence of events, and I will refer to this much later. But for now, you should keep in mind that Shurpanakha threatened Rama by saying that she would cause “harm” to Seetha and Lakshmana]
Then, in the next section (Aranya Kanda Section 18), Rama smiles and laughs at Shurpanakha (he makes a mockery of her love for him) and tells her to go to Lakshmana as he is single and without a wife (this is again a lie spoken by Rama):
When he is said that way Rama chuckled and that wordsmith started to reply her who eyes are besotted in lovesickness with this sentence. [3-17-29]. Rama then voicing clearly and softly spoke to her, whom the noose of lust has tethered down, with a smile preceding his words. [3-18-1].
[Chuckle means to laugh quietly or inwardly. And also note that Rama is smiling and talking to Shurpanakha. He was making a mockery of her love for him, and that is confirmed by the way he tells her to go to his brother, Lakshmana who is without a wife (a lie spoken by Rama)]
Then Shurpanakha goes to Lakshmana and asks for his hand in marriage. As I showed you earlier, the verses spoken by Lakshmana also show that he was attracted to Shurpanakha’s beauty (he praised her complexion, eyes, and waist). Lakshmana then tells Shurpanakha to go to Rama and be his wife. He says Rama will discard his wife, Seetha and marry her (in a joking way):
"On discarding her who is disfigured, dishonest, diabolically deleterious old wife with a hallow stomach that Rama will adore you alone. [3-18-11]
Lakshmana also praises Shurpanakha’s beauty. It gives a hint that like Rama, he was also attracted to her:
"Oh, best complexioned one with best waist, is there any wiseacre to simply discard your kind of best personality, indeed, in preference to human females?" Lakshmana said so to Shuurpanakha. [3-18-12]
Then, Shurpanakha goes to Rama and she says that she will harm Seetha so that he (Rama) marries her. Upon saying this and randomly charging at Seetha, Rama advises Lakshmana to attack Shurpanakha. He does that, and using his sword, defaces Shurpanakha:
She who is fuddle by lust said to that unassailable enemy scorcher Rama who is sitting in the cottage along with Seetha. [3-18-14]. "Tenacious of her who is disfigured, dishonest, diabolical, hallow-stomached old wife of yours you are not regarding me high. [3-18-15]. "Now I wish to eat up this human female right before your very eyes, and then I can blithely make merry along with you, without the botheration of a co-wife." Said Shuurpanakha to Rama. [3-18-16]. Speaking that way she that torch-eyed Shuurpanakha dashed towards the deer-eyed Seetha in high exasperation as a great meteor would dash towards Rohini, the brightest star in the sky. [3-18-17]. By that the great-energetic Rama took umbrage and checking her who is like the noose of death swooping down on Seetha said to Lakshmana. [3-18-18]. "Punning in any way with the base and brutish is inapposite, oh, gentle Saumitri, mark note of Vaidehi, somehow surviving [3-18-19]. "She is freakish, knavish and overtly ruttish, oh, tigerly man, it will be apt of you to deface this paunchy demoness " Thus Rama said to Lakshmana. [3-18-20]. Thus said to that mighty Lakshmana he infuriately drew sword and chopped off her ears and nose before the very eyes of Rama. [3-18-21]. On hewing off her ears and nose she that ghastly Shuurpanakha blared highly and discordantly, and very speedily fled into forest as she came. [3-18-22]
So I have provided the text for the entire incident. Based on this text, I will propose the true story of what happened:
So, one day Shurpanakha saw Rama along with his brother Lakshmana and wife Shurpanakha. She got sexually attracted to Rama, and fell in love with him. She asked Rama for who he is. Then, Rama, saw her and gave his introduction. Rama, upon seeing her “enthralling body”, also got sexually attracted to her, and asked for her husband as he wants to see if she is unmarried. She then revealed her identity. Since she has mentally surrendered herself to Rama, (out of love), she tells the exact truth of whom she is. Luckily, for Rama, she is unmarried, and hence the road is clear for Rama. They don’t get married, but Rama has an affair with her. Although they have an affair, Shurpanakha was not satisfied, as she wanted to marry Rama and be his wife. So Shurpanakha constantly presses Rama for marriage. One day, her desperation increases to the extent that she threatens Rama that if he does not marry her, she will go and report the incident (i.e. romantic affair) to his brother Lakshmana, and his wife Seetha.
[This is the the threat that Shurpanakha gives to Rama in Aranya Kanda Section 17. She threatens Rama that she will cause harm/pain to Seetha and Lakshmana by telling them of what Rama did to her]
Rama does not want Seetha to find out what he did, as he honestly, did not know how his wife would react. He may have thought that his wife would be extremely pained and would leave him. But what he does realize is that his brother Lakshmana is sexually attracted to Shurpanakha. So, Rama makes a mockery of Shurpanakha’s love for him, and while smiling and chuckling, he says that she should go to his brother Lakshmana, who is single. Shurpanakha was probably really pained by this. But she had no other choice. She wanted to stay close to her beloved Rama at all costs, and hence agreed. Also, she may have thought the Lakshmana is also a very handsome man, similar to Rama. So, she consoled herself by thinking of Lakshmana as Rama, and had an affair with Lakshmana. When Lakshmana got bored of her, he thought of finding a way of pushing Shurpanakha back to Rama.
Seetha lusted after Lakshmana, and Lakshmana probably lusted after her (refer to Valmiki Ramayana - Aranya Kanda - Sarga 45). He wanted to marry Seetha, so he thought that if Shurpanakha tells the entire story of what Rama did, to Seetha, she (Seetha) will get upset and will leave Rama. This would give Shurpanakha an opportunity to marry Rama and myself (Lakshmana) an opportunity to marry Seetha. So, Lakshmana went to Shurpanakha and provoked her to go and reveal the entire truth to Seetha. He promised her that Rama would accept her as a wife. So Shurpanakha went to Rama and told him that she can’t bear the insult any more and she will go and tell the entire story to Seetha. Lakshmana didnt expect Shurpanakha to tell her plans to Rama first. This foiled his plans, as Rama ordered him to deface Shurpanakha before she could reach Seetha and tell her the truth of how Rama treated her in such a disgraceful manner. Lakshmana didn’t know what to do. But he thought it wiser to go and deface Shurpanakha. He thought that if he does not do so, Rama would deface her anyways, and also, he thought that if he does not deface Shurpanakha, it would raise suspicions (that Lakshmana may have provoked Shurpanakha to approach Seetha) in Rama. Lakshmana wanted to avoid that, so he was “forced” to deface Shurpanakha and foil his own plan.
[So, the second threat Shurpanakha made to Rama was that she will cause harm/pain to Seetha by telling Seetha of what Rama did to her (Shurpanakha)]
So, this is the true story of why Lakshmana defaced Shurpanakha. Rama lied that Lakshmana was unmarried so that Shurpanakha would leave him, and go to Lakshmana (who was already attracted to her beauty). This would also prevent Shurpanakha from going to Seetha and narrating his betrayal to her, thus saving his relationship with his dear wife, Seetha.
This is the shameful act by Rama and Lakshmana, that Valmiki tried to hide. But as I said earlier, truth prevails!

So, to conclude, Shurpanakha put her entire soul into this relationship with Rama. But what did she get in return? She got insults and defacement by Rama and Lakshmana. This would have definitely created bitterness towards Rama and Lakshmana in her mind, and led to her appealing to her brother Ravana for help. When she realized that Ravana was not interested in avenging her insult, she hit Ravana's weak spot - lust for women - by praising Seetha's beauty to the skies, and suggesting that he take Seetha for himself.