What is Manu Smriti

Manu Smriti

Manu Smriti (Sanskrit: मनुस्मृति manu-smṛti f.) Indian scriptures ascribed to Manu and belonging to the Smriti genre. It is a code of law with philosophical-mythological content. It is also known by the names of Manusamhita and Manava Dharmashastra.

Manusmriti Manu Smriti मनुस्मृति Manu-smṛti pronunciation

Here you can hear how the Sanskrit word Manusmriti Manu Smriti, मनुस्मृति, Manu-smṛti is pronounced:

Sukadev on Manu Smriti

Transcription of a lecture video (2014) by Sukadev about Manu Smriti

What is Manu, what is Smriti? Manu is the progenitor of mankind, Manu is something like Adam, and one would also say Adam and Moses at the same time. The two, or at least Moses, gave the laws for Judeo-Christian culture, or at least they are ascribed to him. And like Moses, there is also Manu. Only that Manu is Adam at the same time, namely the progenitor of humanity and that Manu should not have died either, but should continue to live on a subtle level.

Manu is said to have written down or dictated this Manu Smriti. And Manu Smriti is actually a script that describes the basics of spiritual practice, but also contains laws for the coexistence of a society. The principles of the Manu Smriti are still valid today. However, some characteristics and specific recommendations have to be adapted to our times. Smriti means "the tradition", that which is remembered. Smriti also means memory. And as a genre, Smriti is tradition. Manu Smriti, the tradition of Manu or the transmission of the principles of Manu for the world and for humanity.

In the Manu Smriti you will find, among other things, the Ashramas described, so you will find the four Ashramas, the four stages of life: Brahmacharya, Grihasthya, Vanaprastha, Sannyasa. The four Purusharthas, the four Varnas, are described, various duties and tasks are described. You can find some of the spirituality that we also live in Yoga Vidya in Manu Smriti.

But certain things are only applicable in a certain time. SwamiSivananda once said that Smritis must be adapted for each age. We need a new Smriti for our modern times, so that we can adapt the ancient, eternal principles to the needs of the present day. Shruti, that is what is revealed, is eternal. Smriti, the tradition, has to tune in to modern times again and again, but the principles of the Manu Smriti are still valid today.

The essence of the Manu Smriti

Article from Swami Sivananda's book "Practice of Karma Yoga"

What one has not sown cannot be reaped. As you planted the tree, so it will grow. (IX-40) The success of any company depends on fate and people. Man cannot control fate-related actions. Do not think of fate, act yourself. (VII-205)

Whatever work a person does, whatever his motives, he will receive the reward in an appropriate body. (XII-81)

Let all people think carefully and mindfully, the path of the soul through various forms Brahma, Devas, people, animals, plants and stones, in accordance with their good and bad deeds, should they direct their minds only to virtue. (XIII-22,42,86)

See also

Web links


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