Saturday, April 4, 2020

Symbolism of Arundhati - the chaste wife of Vasishtha


1st chapter of my book
 ‘Myth of 'The Epoch of Arundhati' of Nilesh Nilkanth Oak '

A 10 minute  video on Symbolism of Arundhati and why Arundhati observation by Vyasa was a temporary aberration.

Epoch of Arundhati” being central to the historical dating of Nilesh Nilkanth Oak, the basic question is whether he has done a critical and historical enquiry into who Arundhati was and what she stood for. Since the star (Alcor) is associated with Arundhati who once lived in flesh and blood, any type of reference to the star must be cross checked with the life events of Arundhati to derive the true import of such a reference.  In short anyone working on the star Arundhati must be aware of the symbolism of Arundhati to do fair justice to the research undertaken and to the image of Arundhati as well. The image of Arundhati is of iconic proportions such that her name is found invoked across the country irrespective of the languages spoken and the background of the people.  Not many know that the true persona of Arundhati can be known from old Tamil texts!

Arundhati – an icon of third Purushartha.
Arundhati is held as an epitome of pativratātva – a virtue that has no equivalent word in English, except the term ‘chastity’. Interestingly this virtue has a word in Tamil as “karpu” with two ancient Tamil texts giving elaborate description of what this virtue stands for. An exclusive chapter on this virtue runs into 53 verses in Tolkāppiyam while the world famous text, Tirukkural has devoted 18 chapters with 180 verses dealing with various facets of a woman of this virtue. The reason for such detailing comes from the fact that it is core of the third Purushartha namely Kāma[1]. This virtue is common to both the genders, and one from each gender has been acclaimed for all times in the past. Among men Rama is cited as a model for this virtue and it is Arundhati among women. Of the two Rama is revered as a God, and Arundhati has been elevated to the celestial sphere as a star in the constellation called Sapta Rishi Mandala (Big Dipper).

1.     Marriage vow of firmness in the name of Arundhati
Taking a vow in the name of Arundhati is an integral part of the Vedic marriage. This is done by sighting the star Arundhati before the couple is united in conjugal bliss. This tradition continues in the marriage ceremony of Tamil Brahmins even today giving rise to the famous phrase in Tamil, “ammi midhitthu Arundhati pārthal” that combines two rituals of the marriage ceremony. One of them is the ritual of the bride stepping on the grinding stone as a mark of firmness expected of her. This is followed by the other ritual – that of sighting the star Arundhati with a vow of firmness. Like Arundhati, the woman should never waver from her path, is the import of this sighting.
The bride is first shown the Dhruva star (Pole star) known as a fixed or firm star. She takes a vow that she will be firm, i.e. rooted in her husband’s house. Then she is shown the Sapta Rishi formation. From there she is shown Vasishtha and then finally Arundhati. This practice has lent the name of Arundhati to a philosophical mooring[2] of reaching the Unknown from the Known. From this one can imagine how spiritually rooted and culturally inspiring the icon of Arundhati has become in the Hindu society since time immemorial.
Taking the vow of firmness by sighting the Arundhati star can be seen across the fabric of the society, irrespective of the background of the persons. There exists a reference in a Tamil Sangam text[3]  to a Kṣatriya woman, the wife of the Chera king taking such a vow. Two verses in Silappadhikaram in the context of Kannagi’s marriage[4] establish that this custom was followed by Vaishyas also.
To cap it all an ancient Tamil text called ‘Tirikadugam’ – a name originally referring to a combination of three herbs of medicinal value – having in all 100 verses, with each verse giving a combination of three aphorisms, like medicinal Tirikadugam to cure the ills of life, begins the first line of the first verse that a person should have a wife having the virtue (karpu) of Arundhati![5] Can there be any better statement on Arundhati that she has been a household name for virtue?

2.     The established position of Arundhati as follower of Vasishtha.
In the Hindu society it is customary for the woman to stand on the right side of her husband.  She won’t be standing exactly in line with him, but a little behind. In that position her left shoulder would be just be behind the right shoulder of her husband. This is also the customary position of the couple-deities in temple processions. This is the position of the couple when their right hands are united at the marriage ceremony. When the man is taking the right hand of his bride standing on his right, her position comes a little behind his stretched right hand. That is the traditional position of the couple in all sacred rites and also when they are walking in public glare. This is exactly the position of the two stars, Vasishtha and Arundhati (Mizar and Alcor) in the sky.

Sapta Rishi Mandala or Big Dipper[6]
(Source: Orbitsimulator.com)

The shape of the Sapta Rishi Mandala is that of a big ladle and the above figure is the normal position just above the northern horizon, but below the Pole star. Today this position above the northern horizon is visible only in higher latitudes but it was visible in this position in Hastinapur[7] until 1000 years ago.
The counting of the seven sages starts from the right - from Kratu. Following the shape from Kratu the sixth star can be located in the upward bend of the handle. It is Vasishtha (Mizar) and closely to his right just behind him is the star Arundhati (Alcor). In the above figure she seems to be ‘above’ Vasishtha. One can deduce how she would look when the constellation is moving above the pole star, that is, about 180˚ away from this position. Arundhati would be seen ‘below’ Vasishtha! Within 12 hours this constellation covers 180˚ and appears above the pole star. It looks like an inverted ladle as shown in the figure below.

The same figure rotated 180˚ as above shows Arundhati below Vasishtha but not moved a bit away from the alignment with Vasishtha. This change in the appearance is because the entire constellation moves in the same direction, (anti-clockwise) as seen from the earth and rotates around the pole star. In whichever position the constellation may be seen, the appearance of the star Arundhati remains oriented behind the right side of Vasishtha. So the observation of this constellation warrants understanding the direction of forward motion of the entire Saptarishi group, from which the forward motion of Vasishtha is ascertained. In any position of this group circling the pole star, Arundhati will always been seen closely to the right side of Vasishtha.

Sapta Rishi Mandala moved forward in anti-clockwise direction.
Note Arundhati behind Vasishtha to his right.

This perception had given rise to a belief that to be like Arundhati means following the footsteps of the husband. The virtue associated with Arundhati is not something that makes the woman subsidiary to her husband. It is also not about towing the husband and taking his orders. From the inputs of Tolkāppiyam and Tirukkural we can deduce that a virtuous woman always had her mind following her husband through thick and thin. The decipherment of the name Arundhati further reveals this nature of Arundhati that is reflected in the positional alignment between the two stars.
The word Arundhati comes from the root ‘rudh’ which means ‘obstruct’. ‘Runddhemeans obstruct, stop, prevent, block, keep back etc. If the prefix A is added, it becomes Arundhe which means not obstruct, not stop, not prevent, not torment, and not block etc which ultimately means not coming in the way of someone. This word is found in quite a few places of the Vedic literature says Vedic scholar R.Ramanathan[8]. Quoting the word “avārundhe[9] from Taittrīya Brahmana he says that it is a combination of ava and rundhe which means ‘without obstruction’. From this it is deduced that by her very name Arundhati, she exhibited a quality of not obstructing. Not obstructing what is the question coming out of this. Since she is praised as the sahadhamini[10] of Vasishtha, her name implies that she has not obstructed the dharma (duty) of her husband and has stood by him enabling him to carry out his duties. It is ‘tapas’ for the sake of Dharma that Arundhati explains in a context where she gives the etymology of her name, Arundhati!
Once the seven sages (Sapta rishis) and Arundhati along with two aids named Ganda and Pasusakha were confronted with a demoness by name Yātudhāni. They were asked to identify themselves to escape slaughter by Yātudhāni. When Arundhati’s turn came she said the following verse as the meaning of her name.
[Arundhati]
     dharāṃ dharitrīṃ vasudhāṃ bhartus tiṣṭhāmy anantaram
     mano 'nurundhatī bhartur iti māṃ viddhy arundhatīm[11]
[अरुन्धती]
    
धरां धरित्रीं वसुधां भर्तुस तिष्ठाम्य अनन्तरम
    
मनॊ ऽनुरुन्धती भर्तुर इति मां विद्ध्य अरुन्धतीम

Meaning: “Arundhati said, 'I always stay by the side of my husband, and hold the earth jointly with him. I always incline my husband's heart towards me. I am, for these reasons called Arundhati!”[12]
The term “mano 'nurundhatī” in the above verse is explained as “manaha arundhati” by Vedic scholar R. Ramanathan, meaning ‘holding onto without slipping’. She came to be known as Arundhati because she never slipped away from her position of following her husband, thereby not obstructing his way. A parallel deduction out of this is that she can never go in front of him! A star found in a coupling with another in a similar fashion and not obstructing its path came to be celebrated as the star couple Arundhati and Vasishtha!  
Elsewhere in the same chapter Arundhati tells about what she thinks is wealth.
[Arundhati]
     dharmārthaṃ saṃcayo yo vai dravyāṇāṃ pakṣasaṃmataḥ
     tapaḥ saṃcaya eveha viśiṣṭo dravyasaṃcayāt [13]
Vedic scholar R.Ramanathan translates this as follows:
 Arundhati says, ‘In this world there are some people who say wealth can be accumulated for the sake of Dharma. But according to me, if anything ought to be accumulated for Dharma, it should be tapas.”
Arundhati equates Tapas with wealth and expresses her steadfast nature of clinging to tapas as a way of upholding Dharma. Her Dharma is Pativratātva and following that is her tapas. The characterisation of Arundhati is such that it was her tapas not to slip away or change from her position at any time.
The sages, by naming a star (Alcor) as Arundhati have sent a clear message that the star never deviated from its position, and never went ahead of Vasishtha (Mizar), by obstructing its path. This identification is absurd if Arundhati had ever deviated from her tapas, from Dharma or if ever the star Alcor had deviated from its path in the sky and had walked in front of Mizar (Vasishtha) which is akin to obstructing its path.
The recognition of this unwavering position of the Arundhati star was first reported at the time of the ‘fall’ of the star Abhijit (Vega). While recounting the birth of Kartikeya, the sage Markandeya describes the events that resemble a catastrophe by fire. The narration of certain celestial positions in that context reveals some interesting events of the Vedic society. One of the revelations was the recognition of the unwavering position of Arundhati with reference to Vasishtha in the sky.[14]
The narration tells about a woman by name Svaha who was in love with Agni. Since she could not approach Agni in her original self, she impersonated the wives of the six rishis from among the seven rishis (Saptarishi) and cohabited Agni. Only Arundhati remained difficult to be impersonated as she was steadfast in her devotion to her husband. When the other rishis came to know that their wives have been impersonated, they abandoned their wives. The abandoned six women, who were originally the wives of six rishis were designated as the six mothers of Skanda, who was born of that cohabitation of Svaha and Agni. The six mothers were collectively known as the constellation Krittika in the sky. It was around that time Śakra (Indra) tells Skanda that the star Abhijit had fallen from its position by retiring to woods and was needed to be replaced by another star.[15] And the constellation of Krittika was assigned a place in the heavens to complete the number. 
This story indicates that two events were simultaneously noticed - they being Arundhati looking unchanged in her position (which pre-supposes continuous observation of the sky for several millennia before that) and the fall of Abhijit. In the present context of symbolism of Arundhati the essence of the above story narrated by Markandeya is found to be immortalised in a ritual of Vedic marriage.
Sighting Arundhati star on the evening of the third day of marriage was in vogue in olden days as part of nuptial rites. Today this is incorporated on the day of marriage itself. The interesting part of this rite was inclusion of the Krittika star, identified as the six wives of the six rishis in the mantra of sighting Arundhati. The sighting is done after the ritual of the bride, stepping on a grinding stone as a mark of firmness and stability in the new home. Sighting of Arundhati done after this also conveys the same objective. In Gobhila’s Gruhya Sutra the bride addresses Arundhati as “Ruddha aham asmi”, meaning ‘I am restrained’.[16] If Arundhati is someone who had deviated from her path as Nilesh Oak claims, this ritual could have been dispensed with long ago.
There are differences between different sutras on who recites the particular mantra of this rite – the bride or the bridegroom. Here I am giving the ritual prescribed by Apastambha. This rite begins by sighting Dhruva nakshatra (pole star or a star designated as Dhruva) by the couple. Dhruva is praised as of stable origin and stable existence holding the stars together around it. The bridegroom shows the pole star to the bride and prays that the bride is fixed in his home just like the pole star fixed in the firmament. 
Then he shows her the star Arundhati in the Saptarishi Mandala and says that the bride becomes the eight one after Arundhati who shines along with Krittika stars. In this mantra Arundhati is addressed as being stable along with the six Krittika stars. Krittika and Arundhati together form the group of spouses of seven sages. It is desired that the bride becomes the 8th one after these seven and be stable and fixed in her husband’s home.
Of the seven, only Arundhati had stayed where she was earlier. Others have moved away. Based on the marriage mantra on Arundhati, it is deduced that the spouses of the six rishis were once identified collectively with the star Abhijit who was referred to as the younger sister of Rohini. When she was found to have fallen, the Vedic sages decided to locate a permanent group of six and zeroed in on Krittika constellation. Arundhati had stayed put in the Saptarishi mandala. Krittika as a group of six also had not severed away from its location. Invoke all of them as role models for the new bride coming along with the groom – this is the idea behind the sighting of Arundhati ritual whose beginnings can be traced to a time Abhijit was replaced by Krittika from the group of stars of cultural relevance.
This mantra on Arundhati is followed by mantras that convey stability. The Rig Vedin recites the mantra “dhruvā dyaurdhruvā...”[17] that says that the heavens, the earth, the mountains and the entire Universes are permanently stable. Let the bride also be permanently stable in his home.  By invoking this mantra, the idea or ideal of stability is reinforced. By positioning the Arundhati rite after the rite of the bride stepping on the grinding stone, firmness is reiterated. Thus it can be seen that the grinding stone and Arundhati have been chosen as symbols of steadiness and unwavering nature. If ever Arundhati had moved away and gone past Vasishtha, as Nilesh Oak thinks, then she would not have found a place in the marriage mantras to symbolise firmness!
That any deviation in the position of Arundhati was not at all perceived in Mahabharata times is revealed by Bhishma on arrow bed when he narrated the story of a woman called Sāndli – a pativratā like Arundhati – who was elevated as a star, much like Arundhati, in the celestial sphere.
imaṃ dharmapathaṃ nārī pālayantī samāhitā
     arundhatīva nārīṇāṃ svargaloke mahīyate[18]
Meaning: “That woman who with concentrated attention, adheres to this path of duty, becomes the recipient of considerable honours in heaven like a second Arundhati.[19]
Earlier in the text, Sanjaya also recognises Sāndli and her position in the sky over the three summits of mountain Shringavat[20] located to the south of Airavata Varsha.[21] If it is true that Arundhati had walked ahead of Vasishtha much against the dharma of pativratā during Mahabharata times, there is no logic in Bhishma’s version of the comparison with Arundhati. He could have just stopped with describing the qualities of Sāndli. He could even have talked about the deviation in the path of Arundhati, and contrasted it with Sāndli’s unwavering position in the sky. But none of this had happened, which only goes to show that Arundhati continued to appear in the same path of following her husband in Mahabharata times.
There were times when Arundhati appeared differently and those changes have found their way into the Epics. She has been variously perceived as being angry or picking up a fight with Vasishtha etc but never was she found to have obstructed the path of Vasishtha by going in front of him – an act or appearance that is anathema to her very persona and the very meaning of her name and existence. If ever she had walked ahead of her husband, as Nilesh Oak claims, it would have been construed as obstructing his path – which a pativratā would never do. In that case she would lose her eminence as a pativratā and get demoted. She could no more be recognised in Vedic marriages. If at all she has deviated from her path, the Vedic sages could have spotted some other star as Arundhati – like they picked out Krittika stars – for stability and unwavering position as a star signifying a rishi-patni. The fact that it did not happen goes to show that Arundhati was never found to have gone ahead of Vasishtha.
However for the first time we come across a reference to a revolting position of Arundhati by putting Vasishtha at her back in the words of sage Vyasa while describing the bad omens to King Dhritarashtra just before the Mahabharata War commenced.
Vyasa says,[22]
yā caiṣā viśrutā rājaṃs trailokye sādhu saṃmatā
     arundhatī tayāpy eṣa vasiṣṭhaḥ pṛṣṭhataḥ kṛtaḥ
This means,
She, O king, who is celebrated over the three worlds and is applauded by the righteous, even that (constellation) Arundhati  keepeth (her lord) Vasistha on her back.”[23]
This verse is the only source or the only reference that Nilesh Oak has taken as pivotal to ascertaining the date of Mahabharata war. This appearance of Arundhati has been mentioned by Vyasa as one among several nimittas (omens) seen all around at three levels, namely terrestrial, atmospheric and celestial.
One can find a definite plan in this particular verse on Arundhati. Vyasa has employed a clever trick (yukti) to help decipher what he is coming to say in this verse. This kind of trick is totally absent in his description of other omens.
In the first line of this verse he makes a statement that describes a universal truth about Arundhati accepted by one and all across all ages. It says that she is being praised in all the three worlds, obviously for not obstructing the path of Vasishtha by keeping him at her back.
But the second line says that she had kept Vasishtha at her back – which is not what the very name Arundhati stands for.
Of these two statements, if we take the first one as true then the second statement is absolutely false. That means the sighting of keeping Vasishtha at her back was a temporary phenomenon.
If we accept the second statement as true, then the first statement must be false for, the one who had kept Vasishtha at her back could not have been praised as Arundhati in all the three worlds by righteous people.
By keeping the inherent incompatibility and contradiction between the two statements within the same verse and by relating one with the other, Vyasa had delivered the judgement at that time itself – on which of the two statements is eternally true.
But unfortunately the second statement was picked up by Nilesh Oak as “Shabda Pramāna”[24] with utter disregard to what constitutes a Shabda Pramāna and how it cannot be a Shabda Pramāna. Treating the Arundhati observation as Shabda Pramāna, he seeks to falsify another Shabda Pramāna in the same verse on the symbolism of Arundhati! Without solving the contradictory connotations for the same persona, of which the first statement (in the verse) is universal and continues to be applauded in the Vedic society, Nilesh oak had gone ahead assuming the second statement to be a stable reference to a stellar event, and checking it in the astronomy software, came to the conclusion that the star Arundhati had walked in front of Vasishtha (thereby keeping him at her back) for more than 6000 years from 11091 BCE to 4508 BCE. He has placed the date of Mahabharata war within this period, in 5561 BCE and Ramayana before this period. He claims that Ramayana did not take place any time after 10,000 BCE and Mahabharata did not take place anytime after 4,500 BCE.[25]
Had Vyasa truly referred to a phenomenon that was going on for thousands of years when he made this statement, it gives rise to contradictions within the Mahabharata text. It makes Bhishma’s narration of Sāndli as another Arundhati absurd. It also makes Kunti’s blessings to Draupadi to be like Arundhati ridiculous.
Vasishtha was towing behind Arundhati at the time of Draupadi’s marriage, if we are to accept in Nilesh Oak’s version for the year of Mahabharata war.  If Nilesh Oak is right then Kunti was wrong, for, she advised Draupadi soon after her marriage to remain ‘anuvrata[26] (devoted to her husband’s) like Arundhati.
Kunti says,
Be thou unto thy husband as Sachi unto Indra, Swaha unto Vibhavasu, Rohini unto Soma, Damayanti unto Nala, Bhadra unto Vaisravana, Arundhati unto Vasishtha, Lakshmi unto Narayana.”[27]
How should we interpret the above blessing of Kunti? Did she wish Draupadi to follow her sons (Pandavas) like Sachi, Rohini, and Arundhati etc or put all her sons (Pandavas) behind her, i.e. at her back, like Arundhati of her times who walked in front of Vasishtha? 
The above analogy expressed by Kunti was also used by Sita in her reply to the demonesses at Ashoka Vana.[28] Sita also used the same expression “anuvrata” (Ramam Patim anuvrata - devoted to husband Rama)  
Like the highly fortunate Sachi who waits upon Indra, like Arundhati on Vasishta, like Rohini on the Moon God, like Lopamudra on Agastya, like Sukanya on Chyavana, like Savitri on Satyavanta, like Srimati on Kapila, like Madayanti on Saudasa, like Kesini on Sagara, like Damayanti the daughter of Bhima, devoted to husband Nala, in the same way I am devoted to my husband Rama, the best in Ikshvaku dynasty.”
What was the position of Arundhati when Sita expressed the above?
According to Nilesh Oak, Ramayana happened much before Arundhati’s walk in front of Vasishtha (obstructing his path) and based on that he puts the Rama-Ravana war at 12,209 BCE. As per his theory, Arundhati was behind Vasishtha at that time. So Sita had alluded to following her husband much like Arundhati following Vasishtha. Like Sita, Draupadi was also an anuvrata – devoted to her husband. The common symbolism of Arundhati for both doesn’t match with Nilesh Oak’s assertion that Arundhati of Mahabharata times was different from how she looked at the time of Ramayana. 
Nilesh Oak’s theory of difference in the position of Arundhati in the periods of the two Epics raises three questions.
·         The one who was Arundhati during Ramayana became Rundhati during Mahabharata and once again became Arundhati at the current times. Why then was she recognised as Arundhati and not Rundhati in the Mahabharata?

·         Why Arundhati was not replaced by some other stable star as a Pativratā by great sages such as Vyasa, Bharadwaja, Parasara, Garga and others who lived in the period, if the star was seen moving ahead of Vasishtha?

·         Of the two women Sita and Kunti, should we say that Kunti was a dullard for parroting the Arundhati dialogue of Sita by not keeping herself abreast of the changed position of Arundhati going on for thousands of years? Arundhati in front of Vasishtha was irrelevant at the time of Mahabharata to be invoked in blessings. Why then Kunti invoked her in her blessings for her daughter in law? 
These questions arise if we accept Nilesh Oak’s revolutionary theory of Arundhati Epoch. However the reality picture is encapsulated in Kunti’s blessings in the next verse to Draupadi in wishing Draupadi to be the ‘yajnapatni’ – waiting on her husbands engaged in the performance of sacrifices. This is precisely the same description for the etymology of Arundhati I explained in the beginning of this chapter. The yajnapatni will be closely behind her husband and not in front of him as if obstructing his yajna. Nilesh Oak’s claim of change in the position of Arundhati is at variance to Kunti’s blessings. 
Basically Nilesh Nilkanth Oak’s historical dating is not much to do with the history of Mahabharata as it does with the history of Arundhati! Any claim of success for his dating of Mahabharata automatically means demolition of the history of Arundhati. Arundhati’s historicity is well attested by the fact that her image is deep-rooted in the collective consciousness of the society right from the times of Sita, through Kunti and until now. The collective consciousness of who we are now is ultimately traced to the olden pages of history – in the current context - to the idea of Arundhati, an idea that Nilesh Nilkanth Oak seeks to destroy.
Any write-up on history or dating history cannot ignore the sense of identity that continues to exist in a society, originally given by the very history or historical character that one is working with.  As rightly told in “A Manual of historical Research Methodology”, [29]
“History is to the community what memory is to the individual. When a man loses memory, he loses a sense of identity, or orientation, which renders him helpless in finding his bearings, adjusting himself to peoples and taking intelligent decisions about anything. History enables the society and the individual within that society to take bearings, orientate, and to establish a sense of identity. Concluding his social necessity argument, Professor Marwick writes: “Thanks to our knowledge of history we find that instead of being totally adrift in an endless and featureless sea of time, we do have some idea at least of where we are and of who we are.
With the present evidence of Arundhati Vow taken at the time of marriage, having its genesis in the past existence of an iconic Arundhati, any researcher must tread carefully while putting to test a character such as Arundhati. Starting from this crucial analysis that is found missing in his book, many other features in the book of Nilesh Nilkanth Oak are woefully lacking in integrity or in substance.  Before exposing them all, let me first explain the entire theory of Nilesh Oak as Purva paksha in the following pages.




[1] Tirukkural has these chapters compiled under ‘Kāmatthu pāl’, the 3rd Purushartha.
[2] Arundhati Darshana Nyaya: The technique of gradually moving from the easily perceivable to the lesser perceivable to reach the ultimate Reality to be perceived.
[3] Padirru patthu: Verse 31- lines 28 & 29.
[4] Silappadhikaram: Chapter 1- lines 27 & 63
[5] Tirikadugam: Verse 1, line 1. “Arundhati Karpinār toļum” . Meaning: Marrying a woman having the virtue of Arundhati
[6] The naming of the seven sages in the figure is as per Brihad Samhita: chapter 13. The names were not the same at all times in the past. Since Brihad Samhita is of more recent origin, the naming given in that text has been taken up.
[7] The capital of Kuru kingdom, where sage Vyasa met King Dhritarashtra before the Mahabharata war and made an observation about Arundhati star.
[8] R. Ramanathan has been studying Krishna Yajur Veda, Mimamsa and Lakshana for the past 8 years and teaches Krishna Yajur Veda in Bangalore.
[9] 8th Prasna of the 3rd ashtaka of the Taittrīya Brahmana.
[10] Sahadharmini means wife who shares duties or dharma of her husband.
[12] Translation by Kisari Mohan Ganguli http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m13/m13b058.htm
Mahabharata: 13-94-32
[अरुन्धती]
    
धर्मार्थं संचयॊ यॊ वै दरव्याणां पक्षसंमतः
    
तपः संचय एवेह विशिष्टॊ दरव्यसंचयात
[16] Gobhila Gruhya Sutra, II, 3,10 as given in “Essays On Indo-Aryan Mythology –Vol” by Aiyangar Narayan.
[17] Rig Veda: 10-173-4
इमं धर्मपथं नारी पालयन्ती समाहिता
     अरुन्धतीव नारीणां सवर्गलॊके महीयते
[20] Mahabharata: 6-9-9 “tatra svayaṃprabhā devī nityaṃ vasati śāṇḍilī”
[22] Mahabharata: 6-2-31
या चैषा विश्रुता राजंस तरैलॊक्ये साधु संमता
     अरुन्धती तयाप्य एष वसिष्ठः पृष्ठतः कृतः
[24] “When Did The Mahabharata War Happen?” Page 70
[28] Valmiki Ramayana: 5-24-10
[29] Sreedharan, (2007). “A Manual of Historical Research Methodology”, South India Studies. Page 3

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