A Hindu Womans Life Essay Research Paper

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A Hindu Womans Life Essay, Research Paper Reva s Life Story As Reva carefully opened the temple door, she noticed the bright light filter in from the hot afternoon sun. The woman hoped this was a sign that the gates of heaven would open for her (Hinduism). The slight woman placed a small, brightly colored package of food at her feet and began to pray to Shives, the destroyer and regenerator. Underneath her ghungat, Reva felt the sweat trickle down her tanned neck and off her blackened brow. She felt faint, to think of her upcoming fate. Reva thought back on all of her past deeds, praying that her karma was good enough to overcome her final deed here on earth Hala, Reva s father and Roha, her mother, lived a simple life as farmers of the vaishya class in Nepal, India (Hughes

48). Everyday Hala woke up early and worked on his farm. He was very proud of his small plot of land and modest house. He was also very pleased with his young wife. Hala was eighteen years her elder, but Roha was his choice and came with a respectable dowry (Hughes 48). The couple had been desperately trying to have a male child to carry on the family name, unfortunately the only results were four miscarriages. But finally, Roha was with child and the couple prayed to Brahma, the creator, every day for a strong male baby. Much to Hala s grave disappointment, a girl was born while he worked in the fields. When word reached Hala that his much-awaited child was female, he stormed home, ordered Roha to get rid of the child, and didn t return for five days. Reluctant and scared, Roha

began to prepare a tub of milk to drown her infant in ( Society and Culture ). For those five days, she tried to convince herself to perform her order, but could not. Roha felt an attachment to her daughter, even if she wasn t an asset to the family (Altekar 3). Roha also feared that her karma would be ruined if she killed her daughter. When Hala came home to find the child still alive, he refused to perform a Jatakarma, and he welcomed the child into the world ( Society and Culture ). For four months he would not even touch the girl, but after much pleading from Roha, a Namakarma was performed and the baby was named Reva ( Society and Culture ). As Reva grew up, her parents were very distant toward her and wondered if Roha hadn t made a mistake by keeping the girl alive. Reva

became the focal point of her parent s worries and misery. Roha and Hala continued to pray for a son daily. A son would be the hope of the family, but Reva was just the source of trouble to it (Altekar 5). Her father started looking right away for a suitable and respectable husband for Reva to ensure a marriage as soon as she turned fifteen, so she could move out of the house and stop being a burden for her parents (Altekar 47). Reva s childhood consisted of learning how to take care of a household and how to become an obedient wife. Under her father s care, Reva never received any formal education. Her mother taught her about the household chores. She also had daily gardening and farming tasks to help out her father, since Roha and Hala still hadn t produced a son. Although Reva

knew of her father s search for a proper husband, she couldn t help but fall in love with a young, strong, dark skinned farmer. Jains, at the age of 31 was well known and liked by many. He too was of the vaishya class and worked a plot of land adjacent to the garden Reva worked in (Altekar 67). Reva had little dowry to offer Jains and his family, but Jains was willing to take Reva alone, as his wife and dana. Hala, happy to learn that his search for a husband would be over and Reva wouldn t trouble him anymore, agreed to the arrangement. Once Reva was bedecked and ornamented modestly, the bridegroom was invited into the house and Reva was offered to him according to the proper Brahma religious rite (A6). The wedding ceremony was somewhat elaborate and lasted about three days.