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Title: The Kama Sutra of Vatsyayana
Translated From The Sanscrit In Seven Parts With Preface,
Introduction and Concluding Remarks
Translator: Richard Burton
Shivaram Parashuram Bhide
Release Date: January 18, 2009 [EBook #27827]
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Produced by Bruce Albrecht, Carla Foust, Jon Noring and
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TRANSLATED FROM THE SANSCRIT.
In Seven Parts,
Cosmopoli: MDCCCLXXXIII: for the Kama Shastra Society of
London and Benares, and for private circulation only.
TO THAT SMALL PORTION OF THE BRITISH PUBLIC
WHICH TAKES ENLIGHTENED INTEREST IN
STUDYING THE MANNERS AND CUSTOMS
OF THE OLDEN EAST.
In the literature of all countries there will be found a certain number of works treating especially of love. Everywhere the subject is dealt with differently, and from various points of view. In the present publication it is proposed to give a complete translation of what is considered the standard work on love in Sanscrit literature, and which is called the 'Vatsyayana Kama Sutra,' or Aphorisms on Love, by Vatsyayana.
While the introduction will bear with the evidence concerning the date of the writing, and the commentaries written upon it, the chapters following the introduction will give a translation of the work itself. It is, however, advisable to furnish here a brief analysis of works of the same nature, prepared by authors who lived and wrote years after Vatsya had passed away, but who still considered him as a great authority, and always quoted him as the chief guide to Hindoo erotic literature.
Besides the treatise of Vatsyayana the following works on the same subject are procurable in India:—
- The Ratirahasya, or secrets of love.
- The Panchasakya, or the five arrows.
- The Smara Pradipa, or the light of love.
- The Ratimanjari, or the garland of love.
- The Rasmanjari, or the sprout of love.
- The Anunga Runga, or the stage of love; also called Kamaledhiplava, or a boat in the ocean of love.
The author of the 'Secrets of Love' (No. 1) was a poet named Kukkoka. He composed his work to please one Venudutta, who was perhaps a king. When writing his own name at the end of each chapter he calls himself "Siddha patiya pandita," i.e., an ingenious man among learned men. The work was translated into Hindi years ago, and in this the author's name was written as Koka. And as the same name crept into all the translations into other languages in India, the book became generally known, and the subject was popularly called Koka Shastra, or doctrines of Koka, which is identical with the Kama Shastra, or doctrines of love, and the words Koka Shastra and Kama Shastra are used indiscriminately.
The work contains nearly eight hundred verses, and is divided into ten chapters, which are called called Pachivedas. Some of the things treated of in this work are not to be found in the Vatsyayana, such as the four classes of women, viz., the Padmini, Chitrini, Shankini and Hastini, as also the enumeration of the days and hours on which the women of the different classes become subject to love. The author adds that he wrote these things from the opinions of Gonikaputra and Nandikeshwara, both of whom are mentioned by Vatsyayana, but their works are not now extant. It is difficult to give any approximate idea as to the year in which the work was composed. It is only to be presumed that it was written after that of Vatsyayana, and previous to the other works on this subject that are still extant. Vatsyayana gives the names of ten authors on the subject, all of whose works he had consulted, but none of which are extant, and does not mention this one. This would tend to show that Kukkoka wrote after Vatsya, otherwise Vatsya would assuredly have mentioned him as an author in this branch of literature along with the others.
The author of the 'Five Arrows' (No. 2 in the list) was one Jyotirisha. He is called the chief ornament of poets, the treasure of the sixty-four arts, and the best teacher of the rules of music. He says that he composed the work after reflecting on the aphorisms of love as revealed by the gods, and studying the opinions of Gonikaputra, Muladeva, Babhravya, Ramtideva, Nundikeshwara and Kshemandra. It is impossible to say whether he had perused all the works of these authors, or had only heard about them; anyhow, none of them appear to be in existence now. This work contains nearly six hundred verses, and is divided into five chapters, called Sayakas or Arrows.
The author of the 'Light of Love' (No. 3) was the poet Gunakara, the son of Vechapati. The work contains four hundred verses, and gives only a short account of the doctrines of love, dealing more with other matters.
'The Garland of Love' (No. 4) is the work of the famous poet Jayadeva, who said about himself that he is a writer on all subjects. This treatise is, however, very short, containing only one hundred and twenty-five verses.
The author of the 'Sprout of Love' (No. 5) was a poet called Bhanudatta. It appears from the last verse of the manuscript that he was a resident of the province of Tirhoot, the son of a Brahman named Ganeshwar, who was also a poet. The work, written in Sanscrit, gives the descriptions of different classes of men and women, their classes being made out from their age, description, conduct, etc. It contains three chapters, and its date is not known, and cannot be ascertained.
'The Stage of Love' (No. 6) was composed by the poet Kullianmull, for the amusement of Ladkhan, the son of Ahmed Lodi, the same Ladkhan being in some places spoken of as Ladana Mull, and in others as Ladanaballa. He is supposed to have been a relation or connection of the house of Lodi, which reigned in Hindostan from A.D. 1450-1526. The work would, therefore, have been written in the fifteenth or sixteenth century. It contains ten chapters, and has been translated into English, but only six copies were printed for private circulation. This is supposed to be the latest of the Sanscrit works on the subject, and the ideas in it were evidently taken from previous writings of the same nature.
The contents of these works are in themselves a literary curiosity. There are to be found both in Sanscrit poetry and in the Sanscrit drama a certain amount of poetical sentiment and romance, which have, in every country and in every language, thrown an immortal halo round the subject. But here it is treated in a plain, simple, matter of fact sort of way. Men and women are divided into classes and divisions in the same way that Buffon and other writers on natural history have classified and divided the animal world. As Venus was represented by the Greeks to stand forth as the type of the beauty of woman, so the Hindoos describe the Padmini or Lotus woman as the type of most perfect feminine excellence, as follows:
She in whom the following signs and symptoms appear is called a Padmini. Her face is pleasing as the full moon; her body, well clothed with flesh, is soft as the Shiras or mustard flower, her skin is fine, tender and fair as the yellow lotus, never dark coloured. Her eyes are bright and beautiful as the orbs of the fawn, well cut, and with reddish corners. Her bosom is hard, full and high; she has a good neck; her nose is straight and lovely, and three folds or wrinkles cross her middle—about the umbilical region. Her yoni resembles the opening lotus bud, and her love seed (Kama salila) is perfumed like the lily that has newly burst. She walks with swan-like gait, and her voice is low and musical as the note of the Kokila bird, she delights in white raiments, in fine jewels, and in rich dresses. She eats little, sleeps lightly, and being as respectful and religious as she is clever and courteous, she is ever anxious to worship the gods, and to enjoy the conversation of Brahmans. Such, then, is the Padmini or Lotus woman.
Detailed descriptions then follow of the Chitrini or Art woman; the Shankhini or Conch woman, and the Hastini or Elephant woman, their days of enjoyment, their various seats of passion, the manner in which they should be manipulated and treated in sexual intercourse, along with the characteristics of the men and women of the various countries in Hindostan. The details are so numerous, and the subjects so seriously dealt with, and at such length, that neither time nor space will permit of their being given here.
One work in the English language is somewhat similar to these works of the Hindoos. It is called 'Kalogynomia: or the Laws of Female Beauty,' being the elementary principles of that science, by T. Bell, M.D., with twenty-four plates, and printed in London in 1821. It treats of Beauty, of Love, of Sexual Intercourse, of the Laws regulating that Intercourse, of Monogamy and Polygamy, of Prostitution, of Infidelity, ending with a catalogue raisonnée of the defects of female beauty.
Other works in English also enter into great details of private and domestic life. 'The Elements of Social Science, or Physical, Sexual and Natural Religion,' by a Doctor of Medicine, London, 1880, and 'Every Woman's Book,' by Dr. Waters, 1826. To persons interested in the above subjects these works will be found to contain such details as have been seldom before published, and which ought to be thoroughly understood by all philanthropists and benefactors of society.
After a perusal of the Hindoo work, and of the English books above mentioned, the reader will understand the subject, at all events from a materialistic, realistic and practical point of view. If all science is founded more or less on a stratum of facts, there can be no harm in making known to mankind generally certain matters intimately connected with their private, domestic, and social life.
Alas! complete ignorance of them has unfortunately wrecked many a man and many a woman, while a little knowledge of a subject generally ignored by the masses would have enabled numbers of people to have understood many things which they believed to be quite incomprehensible, or which were not thought worthy of their consideration.
It may be interesting to some persons to learn how it came about that Vatsyayana was first brought to light and translated into the English language. It happened thus. While translating with the pundits the 'Anunga runga, or the stage of love,' reference was frequently found to be made to one Vatsya. The sage Vatsya was of this opinion, or of that opinion. The sage Vatsya said this, and so on. Naturally questions were asked who the sage was, and the pundits replied that Vatsya was the author of the standard work on love in Sanscrit literature, that no Sanscrit library was complete without his work, and that it was most difficult now to obtain in its entire state. The copy of the manuscript obtained in Bombay was defective, and so the pundits wrote to Benares, Calcutta and Jeypoor for copies of the manuscript from Sanscrit libraries in those places. Copies having been obtained, they were then compared with each other, and with the aid of a Commentary called 'Jayamangla' a revised copy of the entire manuscript was prepared, and from this copy the English translation was made. The following is the certificate of the chief pundit:—
"The accompanying manuscript is corrected by me after comparing four different copies of the work. I had the assistance of a Commentary called 'Jayamangla' for correcting the portion in the first five parts, but found great difficulty in correcting the remaining portion, because, with the exception of one copy thereof which was tolerably correct, all the other copies I had were far too incorrect. However, I took that portion as correct in which the majority of the copies agreed with each other."
The 'Aphorisms on Love,' by Vatsyayana, contains about one thousand two hundred and fifty slokas or verses, and are divided into parts, parts into chapters, and chapters into paragraphs. The whole consists of seven parts, thirty-six chapters, and sixty-four paragraphs. Hardly anything is known about the author. His real name is supposed to be Mallinaga or Mrillana, Vatsyayana being his family name. At the close of the work this is what he writes about himself:
"After reading and considering the works of Babhravya and other ancient authors, and thinking over the meaning of the rules given by them, this treatise was composed, according to the precepts of the Holy Writ, for the benefit of the world, by Vatsyayana, while leading the life of a religious student at Benares, and wholly engaged in the contemplation of the Deity. This work is not to be used merely as an instrument for satisfying our desires. A person acquainted with the true principles of this science, who preserves his Dharma (virtue or religious merit), his Artha (worldly wealth) and his Kama (pleasure or sensual gratification), and who has regard to the customs of the people, is sure to obtain the mastery over his senses. In short, an intelligent and knowing person, attending to Dharma and Artha and also to Kama, without becoming the slave of his passions, will obtain success in everything that he may do."
It is impossible to fix the exact date either of the life of Vatsyayana or of his work. It is supposed that he must have lived between the first and the sixth centuries of the Christian era, on the following grounds:—He mentions that Satkarni Srtvahan, a king of Kuntal, killed Malayevati his wife with an instrument called kartari by striking her in the passion of love, and Vatsya quotes this case to warn people of the danger arising from some old customs of striking women when under the influence of this passion. Now this king of Kuntal is believed to have lived and reigned during the first century A.C., and consequently Vatsya must have lived after him. On the other hand, Virahamihira, in the eighteenth chapter of his 'Brihatsanhita,' treats of the science of love, and appears to have borrowed largely from Vatsyayana on the subject. Now Virahamihira is said to have lived during the sixth century A.D., and as Vatsya must have written his works previously, therefore not earlier than the first century, A.C., and not later than the sixth century A.D., must be considered as the approximate date of his existence.
On the text of the 'Aphorisms on Love,' by Vatsyayana, only two commentaries have been found. One called 'Jayamangla' or 'Sutrabashya,' and the other 'Sutra vritti.' The date of the 'Jayamangla' is fixed between the tenth and thirteenth centuries A.D., because while treating of the sixty-four arts an example is taken from the 'Kávyaprakásha,' which was written about the tenth century A.D. Again, the copy of the commentary procured was evidently a transcript of a manuscript which once had a place in the library of a Chaulukyan king named Vishaladeva, a fact elicited from the following sentence at the end of it:—
"Here ends the part relating to the art of love in the commentary on the 'Vatsyayana Kama Sutra,' a copy from the library of the king of kings, Vishaladeva, who was a powerful hero, as it were a second Arjuna, and head jewel of the Chaulukya family."
Now it is well known that this king ruled in Guzerat from 1244 to 1262 A.D., and founded a city called Visalnagur. The date, therefore, of the commentary is taken to be not earlier than the tenth and not later than the thirteenth century. The author of it is supposed to be one Yashodhara, the name given him by his preceptor being Indrapada. He seems to have written it during the time of affliction caused by his separation from a clever and shrewd woman, at least that is what he himself says at the end of each chapter. It is presumed that he called his work after the name of his absent mistress, or the word may have some connection with the meaning of her name.
This commentary was most useful in explaining the true meaning of Vatsyayana, for the commentator appears to have had a considerable knowledge of the times of the older author, and gives in some places very minute information. This cannot be said of the other commentary, called "Sutra vritti," which was written about A.D., by Narsing Shastri, a pupil of a Sarveshwar Shastri; the latter was a descendant of Bhaskur, and so also was our author, for at the conclusion of every part he calls himself Bhaskur Narsing Shastra. He was induced to write the work by order of the learned Raja Vrijalala, while he was residing in Benares, but as to the merits of this commentary it does not deserve much commendation. In many cases the writer does not appear to have understood the meaning of the original author, and has changed the text in many places to fit in with his own explanations.
A complete translation of the original work now follows. It has been prepared in complete accordance with the text of the manuscript, and is given, without further comments, as made from it.
THE VATSYAYANA SUTRA.
SALUTATION TO DHARMA, ARTHA AND KAMA.
In the beginning, the Lord of Beings created men and women, and in the form of commandments in one hundred thousand chapters laid down rules for regulating their existence with regard to Dharma, Artha, and Kama. Some of these commandments, namely those which treated of Dharma, were separately written by Swayambhu Manu; those that related to Artha were compiled by Brihaspati; and those that referred to Kama were expounded by Nandi, the follower of Mahadeva, in one thousand chapters.
Now these 'Kama Sutra' (Aphorisms on Love), written by Nandi in one thousand chapters, were reproduced by Shvetaketu, the son of Uddvalaka, in an abbreviated form in five hundred chapters, and this work was again similarly reproduced in an abridged form, in one hundred and fifty chapters, by Babhravya, an inhabitant of the Punchala (South of Delhi) country. These one hundred and fifty chapters were then put together under seven heads or parts named severally—
1st. Sadharana (general topics).
2nd. Samprayogika (embraces, etc.).
3rd. Kanya Samprayuktaka (union of males and females).
4th. Bharyadhikarika (on one's own wife).
5th. Paradika (on the wives of other people).
6th. Vaisika (on courtesans).
7th. Aupamishadika (on the arts of seduction, tonic medicines, etc.).
The sixth part of this last work was separately expounded by Dattaka at the request of the public women of Pataliputra (Patna), and in the same way Charayana explained the first part of it. The remaining parts, viz., the second, third, fourth, fifth, and seventh were each separately expounded by—
- Suvarnanabha (second part).
- Ghotakamukha (third part).
- Gonardiya (fourth part).
- Gonikaputra (fifth part).
- Kuchumara (seventh part), respectively.
Thus the work being written in parts by different authors was almost unobtainable, and as the parts which were expounded by Dattaka and the others treated only of the particular branches of the subject to which each part related, and moreover as the original work of Babhravya was difficult to be mastered on account of its length, Vatsyayana, therefore, composed his work in a small volume as an abstract of the whole of the works of the above-named authors.
BEING THE INDEX TO OR CONTENTS OF THE WORK.
|Chapter||II.||Observations on the three worldly attainments of Virtue, Wealth and Love.|
|"||III.||On the study of the Sixty-four Arts.|
|"||IV.||On the Arrangements of a House, and Household Furniture; and about the Daily Life of a Citizen, his Companions, Amusements, &c.|
|"||V.||About classes of Women fit and unfit for Congress with the Citizen, and of Friends, and Messengers.|
ON SEXUAL UNION.
|Chapter||I.||Kinds of Union according to Dimensions, Force of Desire, and Time; and on the different kinds of Love.|
|"||II.||Of the Embrace.|
|"||IV.||On Pressing or Marking with the Nails.|
|"||V.||On Biting, and the ways of Love to be employed with regard to Women of different countries.|
|"||VI.||On the various ways of Lying Down, and the different kinds of Congress.|
|"||VII.||On the various ways of Striking, and of the Sounds appropriate to them.|
|"||VIII.||About females acting the part of Males.|
|"||IX.||On holding the Lingam in the Mouth.|
|"||X.||How to begin and how to end the Congress. Different kinds of Congress, and Love Quarrels.|
ABOUT THE ACQUISITION OF A WIFE.
|Chapter||I.||Observations on Betrothal and Marriage.|
|"||II.||About creating Confidence in the Girl.|
|"||III.||Courtship, and the manifestations of the feelings by outward signs and deeds.|
|"||IV.||On things to be done only by the Man, and the acquisition of the Girl thereby. Also what to be done by a Girl to gain over a Man and subject him to her.|
|"||V.||On the different Forms of Marriage.|
ABOUT A WIFE.
|Chapter||I.||On the manner of living of a virtuous Woman, and of her behaviour during the absence of her Husband.|
|"||II.||On the conduct of the eldest Wife towards the other Wives of her husband, and of the younger Wife towards the elder ones. Also on the conduct of a Virgin Widow re-married; of a Wife disliked by her Husband; of the Women in the King's Harem; and of a Husband who has more than one Wife.|
ABOUT THE WIVES OF OTHER PEOPLE.
|Chapter||I.||On the Characteristics of Men and Women, and the reason why Women reject the Addresses of Men. About Men who have Success with Women, and about Women who are easily gained over.|
|"||II.||About making Acquaintance with the Woman, and of the efforts to gain her over.|
|"||III.||Examination of the State of a Woman's mind.|
|"||IV.||The business of a Go-between.|
|"||V.||On the Love of Persons in authority with the Wives of other People.|
|"||VI.||About the Women of the Royal Harem, and of the keeping of one's own Wife.|
|Chapter||I.||On the Characteristics of Men and Women, and the reason why Women reject the Addresses of Men. About Men who have Success with Women, and about Women who are easily gained over.|
|"||II.||Of a Courtesan living with a Man as his Wife.|
|"||III.||Of the means of getting Money; of the Signs of a Lover who is beginning to be weary, and of the way to get rid of him.|
|"||IV.||About a Re-union with a former Lover.|
|"||V.||Of different kinds of Gain.|
|"||VI.||Of Gains and Losses, attendant Gains and Losses, and Doubts; and lastly, the different kinds of Courtesans.|
ON THE MEANS OF ATTRACTING OTHERS TO ONE'S SELF.
|Chapter||I.||On Personal Adornment, subjugating the hearts of others, and of tonic medicines.|
|"||II.||Of the Means of exciting Desire, and of the ways of enlarging the Lingam. Miscellaneous Experiments and Receipts.|
ON THE ACQUISITION OF DHARMA, ARTHA AND KAMA.
Man, the period of whose life is one hundred years, should practise Dharma, Artha, and Kama at different times and in such a manner that they may harmonize together and not clash in any way. He should acquire learning in his childhood, in his youth and middle age he should attend to Artha and Kama, and in his old age he should perform Dharma, and thus seek to gain Moksha, i.e., release from further transmigration. Or, on account of the uncertainty of life, he may practise them at times when they are enjoined to be practised. But one thing is to be noted, he should lead the life of a religious student until he finishes his education.
Dharma is obedience to the command of the Shastra or Holy Writ of the Hindoos to do certain things, such as the performance of sacrifices, which are not generally done because they do not belong to this world, and produce no visible effect; and not to do other things, such as eating meat, which is often done because it belongs to this world, and has visible effects.
Dharma should be learnt from the Shruti (Holy Writ), and from those conversant with it.
Artha is the acquisition of arts, land, gold, cattle, wealth, equipages and friends. It is, further, the protection of what is acquired, and the increase of what is protected.
Artha should be learnt from the king's officers, and from merchants who may be versed in the ways of commerce.
Kama is the enjoyment of appropriate objects by the five senses of hearing, feeling, seeing, tasting, and smelling, assisted by the mind together with the soul. The ingredient in this is a peculiar contact between the organ of sense and its object, and the consciousness of pleasure which arises from that contact is called Kama.
When all the three, viz., Dharma, Artha, and Kama come together, the former is better than the one which follows it, i.e., Dharma is better than Artha, and Artha is better than Kama. But Artha should be always first practised by the king, for the livelihood of men is to be obtained from it only. Again, Kama being the occupation of public women, they should prefer it to the other two, and these are exceptions to the general rule.
Some learned men say that as Dharma is connected with things not belonging to this world, it is appropriately treated of in a book; and so also is Artha, because it is practised only by the application of proper means, and a knowledge of those means can only be obtained by study and from books. But Kama being a thing which is practised even by the brute creation, and which is to be found everywhere, does not want any work on the subject.
This is not so. Sexual intercourse being a thing dependent on man and woman requires the application of proper means by them, and those means are to be learnt from the Kama Shastra. The non-application of proper means, which we see in the brute creation, is caused by their being unrestrained, and by the females among them only being fit for sexual intercourse at certain seasons and no more, and by their intercourse not being preceded by thought of any kind.
The Lokayatikas say:—Religious ordinances should not be observed, for they bear a future fruit, and at the same time it is also doubtful whether they will bear any fruit at all. What foolish person will give away that which is in his own hands into the hands of another? Moreover, it is better to have a pigeon to-day than a peacock to-morrow; and a copper coin which we have the certainty of obtaining, is better than a gold coin, the possession of which is doubtful.
It is not so. 1st. Holy Writ, which ordains the practice of Dharma, does not admit of a doubt.
2nd. Sacrifices such as those made for the destruction of enemies, or for the fall of rain, are seen to bear fruit.
3rd. The sun, moon, stars, planets and other heavenly bodies appear to work intentionally for the good of the world.
4th. The existence of this world is effected by the observance of the rules respecting the four classes of men and their four stages of life.
5th. We see that seed is thrown into the ground with the hope of future crops.
Vatsyayana is therefore of opinion that the ordinances of religion must be obeyed.
Those who believe that destiny is the prime mover of all things say:—We should not exert ourselves to acquire wealth, for sometimes it is not acquired although we strive to get it, while at other times it comes to us of itself without any exertion on our part. Everything is therefore in the power of destiny, who is the lord of gain and loss, of success and defeat, of pleasure and pain. Thus we see the Bali was raised to the throne of Indra by destiny, and was also put down by the same power, and it is destiny only that can re-instate him.
It is not right to say so. As the acquisition of every object pre-supposes at all events some exertion on the part of man, the application of proper means may be said to be the cause of gaining all our ends, and this application of proper means being thus necessary (even where a thing is destined to happen), it follows that a person who does nothing will enjoy no happiness.
Those who are inclined to think that Artha is the chief object to be obtained argue thus. Pleasures should not be sought for, because they are obstacles to the practice of Dharma and Artha, which are both superior to them, and are also disliked by meritorious persons. Pleasures also bring a man into distress, and into contact with low persons; they cause him to commit unrighteous deeds, and produce impurity in him; they make him regardless of the future, and encourage carelessness and levity. And lastly, they cause him to be disbelieved by all, received by none, and despised by everybody, including himself. It is notorious, moreover, that many men who have given themselves up to pleasure alone, have been ruined along with their families and relations. Thus, King Dandakya, of the Bhoja dynasty, carried off a Brahman's daughter with evil intent, and was eventually ruined and lost his kingdom. Indra, too, having violated the chastity of Ahalya, was made to suffer for it. In a like manner the mighty Kichaka, who tried to seduce Draupadi, and Ravana, who attempted to gain over Sita, were punished for their crimes. These and many others fell by reason of their pleasures.
This objection cannot be sustained, for pleasures, being as necessary for the existence and well being of the body as food, are consequently equally required. They are, moreover, the results of Dharma and Artha. Pleasures are, therefore, to be followed with moderation and caution. No one refrains from cooking food because there are beggars to ask for it, or from sowing seed because there are deer to destroy the corn when it is grown up.
Thus a man practising Dharma, Artha and Kama enjoys happiness both in this world and in the world to come. The good perform those actions in which there is no fear as to what is to result from them in the next world, and in which there is no danger to their welfare. Any action which conduces to the practice of Dharma, Artha and Kama together, or of any two, or even one of them, should be performed, but an action which conduces to the practice of one of them at the expense of the remaining two should not be performed.
ON THE ARTS AND SCIENCES TO BE STUDIED.
Man should study the Kama Sutra and the arts and sciences subordinate thereto, in addition to the study of the arts and sciences contained in Dharma and Artha. Even young maids should study this Kama Sutra along with its arts and sciences before marriage, and after it they should continue to do so with the consent of their husbands.
Here some learned men object, and say that females, not being allowed to study any science, should not study the Kama Sutra.
But Vatsyayana is of opinion that this objection does not hold good, for women already know the practice of Kama Sutra, and that practice is derived from the Kama Shastra, or the science of Kama itself. Moreover, it is not only in this but in many other cases that though the practice of a science is known to all, only a few persons are acquainted with the rules and laws on which the science is based. Thus the Yadnikas or sacrificers, though ignorant of grammar, make use of appropriate words when addressing the different Deities, and do not know how these words are framed. Again, persons do the duties required of them on auspicious days, which are fixed by astrology, though they are not acquainted with the science of astrology. In a like manner riders of horses and elephants train these animals without knowing the science of training animals, but from practice only. And similarly the people of the most distant provinces obey the laws of the kingdom from practice, and because there is a king over them, and without further reason. And from experience we find that some women, such as daughters of princes and their ministers, and public women, are actually versed in the Kama Shastra.
A female, therefore, should learn the Kama Shastra, or at least a part of it, by studying its practice from some confidential friend. She should study alone in private the sixty-four practices that form a part of the Kama Shastra. Her teacher should be one of the following persons, viz., the daughter of a nurse brought up with her and already married, or a female friend who can be trusted in everything, or the sister of her mother (i.e., her aunt), or an old female servant, or a female beggar who may have formerly lived in the family, or her own sister, who can always be trusted.
The following are the arts to be studied, together with the Kama Sutra:—
- Playing on musical instruments.
- Union of dancing, singing, and playing instrumental music.
- Writing and drawing.
- Arraying and adorning an idol with rice and flowers.
- Spreading and arraying beds or couches of flowers, or flowers upon the ground.
- Colouring the teeth, garments, hair, nails, and bodies, i.e., staining, dyeing, colouring and painting the same.
- Fixing stained glass into a floor.
- The art of making beds, and spreading out carpets and cushions for reclining.
- Playing on musical glasses filled with water.
- Storing and accumulating water in aqueducts, cisterns and reservoirs.
- Picture making, trimming and decorating.
- Stringing of rosaries, necklaces, garlands and wreaths.
- Binding of turbans and chaplets, and making crests and top-knots of flowers.
- Scenic representations. Stage playing.
- Art of making ear ornaments.
- Art of preparing perfumes and odours.
- Proper disposition of jewels and decorations, and adornment in dress.
- Magic or sorcery.
- Quickness of hand or manual skill.
- Culinary art, i.e., cooking and cookery.
- Making lemonades, sherbets, acidulated drinks, and spirituous extracts with proper flavour and colour.
- Tailor's work and sewing.
- Making parrots, flowers, tufts, tassels, bunches, bosses, knobs, &c., out of yarn or thread.
- Solution of riddles, enigmas, covert speeches, verbal puzzles and enigmatical questions.
- A game, which consisted in repeating verses, and as one person finished, another person had to commence at once, repeating another verse, beginning with the same letter with which the last speaker's verse ended, whoever failed to repeat was considered to have lost, and to be subject to pay a forfeit or stake of some kind.
- The art of mimicry or imitation.
- Reading, including chanting and intoning.
- Study of sentences difficult to pronounce. It is played as a game chiefly by women and children, and consists of a difficult sentence being given, and when repeated quickly, the words are often transposed or badly pronounced.
- Practice with sword, single stick, quarter staff, and bow and arrow.
- Drawing inferences, reasoning or inferring.
- Carpentry, or the work of a carpenter.
- Architecture, or the art of building.
- Knowledge about gold and silver coins, and jewels and gems.
- Chemistry and mineralogy.
- Colouring jewels, gems and beads.
- Knowledge of mines and quarries.
- Gardening; knowledge of treating the diseases of trees and plants, of nourishing them, and determining their ages.
- Art of cock fighting, quail fighting and ram fighting.
- Art of teaching parrots and starlings to speak.
- Art of applying perfumed ointments to the body, and of dressing the hair with unguents and perfumes and braiding it.
- The art of understanding writing in cypher, and the writing of words in a peculiar way.
- The art of speaking by changing the forms of words. It is of various kinds. Some speak by changing the beginning and end of words, others by adding unnecessary letters between every syllable of a word, and so on.
- Knowledge of language and of the vernacular dialects.
- Art of making flower carriages.
- Art of framing mystical diagrams, of addressing spells and charms, and binding armlets.
- Mental exercises, such as completing stanzas or verses on receiving a part of them; or supplying one, two or three lines when the remaining lines are given indiscriminately from different verses, so as to make the whole an entire verse with regard to its meaning; or arranging the words of a verse written irregularly by separating the vowels from the consonants, or leaving them out altogether; or putting into verse or prose sentences represented by signs or symbols. There are many other such exercises.
- Composing poems.
- Knowledge of dictionaries and vocabularies.
- Knowledge of ways of changing and disguising the appearance of persons.
- Knowledge of the art of changing the appearance of things, such as making cotton to appear as silk, coarse and common things to appear as fine and good.
- Various ways of gambling.
- Art of obtaining possession of the property of others by means of muntras or incantations.
- Skill in youthful sports.
- Knowledge of the rules of society, and of how to pay respects and compliments to others.
- Knowledge of the art of war, of arms, of armies, &c.
- Knowledge of gymnastics.
- Art of knowing the character of a man from his features.
- Knowledge of scanning or constructing verses.
- Arithmetical recreations.
- Making artificial flowers.
- Making figures and images in clay.
A public woman, endowed with a good disposition, beauty and other winning qualities, and also versed in the above arts, obtains the name of a Ganika, or public woman of high quality, and receives a seat of honour in an assemblage of men. She is, moreover, always respected by the king, and praised by learned men, and her favour being sought for by all, she becomes an object of universal regard. The daughter of a king too, as well as the daughter of a minister, being learned in the above arts, can make their husbands favourable to them, even though these may have thousands of other wives besides themselves. And in the same manner, if a wife becomes separated from her husband, and falls into distress, she can support herself easily, even in a foreign country, by means of her knowledge of these arts. Even the bare knowledge of them gives attractiveness to a woman, though the practice of them may be only possible or otherwise according to the circumstances of each case. A man who is versed in these arts, who is loquacious and acquainted with the arts of gallantry, gains very soon the hearts of women, even though he is only acquainted with them for a short time.
THE LIFE OF A CITIZEN.
Having thus acquired learning, a man, with the wealth that he may have gained by gift, conquest, purchase, deposit, or inheritance from his ancestors, should become a householder, and pass the life of a citizen. He should take a house in a city, or large village, or in the vicinity of good men, or in a place which is the resort of many persons. This abode should be situated near some water, and divided into different compartments for different purposes. It should be surrounded by a garden, and also contain two rooms, an outer and an inner one. The inner room should be occupied by the females, while the outer room, balmy with rich perfumes, should contain a bed, soft, agreeable to the sight covered with a clean white cloth, low in the middle part, having garlands and bunches of flowers upon it, and a canopy above it, and two pillows, one at the top, another at the bottom. There should be also a sort of couch besides, and at the head of this a sort of stool, on which should be placed the fragrant ointments for the night, as well as flowers, pots containing collyrium and other fragrant substances, things used for perfuming the mouth, and the bark of the common citron tree. Near the couch, on the ground, there should be a pot for spitting, a box containing ornaments, and also a lute hanging from a peg made of the tooth of an elephant, a board for drawing, a pot containing perfume, some books, and some garlands of the yellow amaranth flowers. Not far from the couch, and on the ground, there should be a round seat, a toy cart, and a board for playing with dice; outside the outer room there should be cages of birds, and a separate place for spinning, carving, and such like diversions. In the garden there should be a whirling swing and a common swing, as also a bower of creepers covered with flowers, in which a raised parterre should be made for sitting.
Now the householder having got up in the morning and performed his necessary duties, should wash his teeth, apply a limited quantity of ointments and perfumes to his body, put some ornaments on his person and collyrium on his eyelids and below his eyes, colour his lips with alacktaka, and look at himself in the glass. Having then eaten betel leaves, with other things that give fragrance to the mouth, he should perform his usual business. He should bathe daily, anoint his body with oil every other day, apply a lathering substance to his body every three days, get his head (including face) shaved every four days, and the other parts of his body every five or ten days. All these things should be done without fail, and the sweat of the armpits should also be removed. Meals should be taken in the forenoon, in the afternoon, and again at night, according to Charayana. After breakfast, parrots and other birds should be taught to speak, and the fighting of cocks, quails, and rams should follow. A limited time should be devoted to diversions with Pithamardas, Vitas, and Vidushakas, and then should be taken the midday sleep. After this the householder, having put on his clothes and ornaments, should, during the afternoon, converse with his friends. In the evening there should be singing, and after that the householder, along with his friend, should await in his room, previously decorated and perfumed, the arrival of the woman that may be attached to him, or he may send a female messenger for her, or go for her himself. After her arrival at his house, he and his friend should welcome her, and entertain her with a loving and agreeable conversation. Thus end the duties of the day.
The following are the things to be done occasionally as diversions or amusements.
- Holding festivals in honour of different Deities.
- Social gatherings of both sexes.
- Drinking parties.
- Other social diversions.
On some particular auspicious day, an assembly of citizens should be convened in the temple of Saraswati. There the skill of singers, and of others who may have come recently to the town, should be tested, and on the following day they should always be given some rewards. After that they may either be retained or dismissed, according as their performances are liked or not by the assembly. The members of the assembly should act in concert, both in times of distress as well as in times of prosperity, and it is also the duty of these citizens to show hospitality to strangers who may have come to the assembly. What is said above should be understood to apply to all the other festivals which may be held in honour of the different Deities, according to the present rules.
When men of the same age, disposition and talents, fond of the same diversions and with the same degree of education, sit together in company with public women, or in an assembly of citizens, or at the abode of one among themselves, and engage in agreeable discourse with each other, such is called a sitting in company or a social gathering. The subjects of discourse are to be the completion of verses half composed by others, and the testing the knowledge of one another in the various arts. The women who may be the most beautiful, who may like the same things that the men like, and who may have power to attract the minds of others, are here done homage to.
Men and women should drink in one another's houses. And here the men should cause the public women to drink, and should then drink themselves, liquors such as the Madhu, Aireya, Sara, and Asawa, which are of bitter and sour taste; also drinks concocted from the barks of various trees, wild fruits and leaves.
Going to Gardens or Picnics.
In the forenoon, men, having dressed themselves should go to gardens on horseback, accompanied by public women and followed by servants. And having done there all the duties of the day, and passed the time in various agreeable diversions, such as the fighting of quails, cocks and rams, and other spectacles, they should return home in the afternoon in the same manner, bringing with them bunches of flowers, &c.
The same also applies to bathing in summer in water from which wicked or dangerous animals have previously been taken out, and which has been built in on all sides.
Other Social Diversions.
Spending nights playing with dice. Going out on moonlight nights. Keeping the festive day in honour of spring. Plucking the sprouts and fruits of the mangoe trees. Eating the fibres of lotuses. Eating the tender ears of corn. Picnicing in the forests when the trees get their new foliage. The Udakakashvedika or sporting in the water. Decorating each other with the flowers of some trees. Pelting each other with the flowers of the Kadamba tree, and many other sports which may either be known to the whole country, or may be peculiar to particular parts of it. These and similar other amusements should always be carried on by citizens.
The above amusements should be followed by a person who diverts himself alone in company with a courtesan, as well as by a courtesan who can do the same in company with her maid servants or with citizens.
A Pithamarda is a man without wealth, alone in the world, whose only property consists of his Mallika, some lathering, substance and a red cloth, who comes from a good country, and who is skilled in all the arts; and by teaching these arts is received in the company of citizens, and in the abode of public women.
A Vita is a man who has enjoyed the pleasures of fortune, who is a compatriot of the citizens with whom he associates, who is possessed of the qualities of a householder, who has his wife with him, and who is honoured in the assembly of citizens, and in the abodes of public women, and lives on their means and on them.
A Vidushaka (also called a Vaihasaka, i.e., one who provokes laughter) is a person only acquainted with some of the arts who is a jester, and who is trusted by all.
These persons are employed in matters of quarrels and reconciliations between citizens and public women.
This remark applies also to female beggars, to women with their heads shaved, to adulterous women, and to old public women skilled in all the various arts.
Thus a citizen living in his town or village, respected by all, should call on the persons of his own caste who may be worth knowing. He should converse in company and gratify his friends by his society, and obliging others by his assistance in various matters, he should cause them to assist one another in the same way.
There are some verses on this subject as follows:—
A citizen discoursing, not entirely in the Sanscrit language, nor wholly in the dialects of the country, on various topics in society, obtains great respect. The wise should not resort to a society disliked by the public, governed by no rules, and intent on the destruction of others. But a learned man living in a society which acts according to the wishes of the people, and which has pleasure for its only object is highly respected in this world.