What Is The Word That Describes The Woman In Hinduism

Hinduism Vision of Women

Hinduism, one of the oldest, most diverse and complex of the world’s religions, has a long history of recognizing and respecting the power of women. Hindus believe that their way of life and the universe itself were created out of the female power of shakti, the feminine version of the divine, and from her all creation arose. Consequently, reverence for women is woven into the fabric of Hinduism. Hinduism views men and women as essentially equal, though different from each other in many ways.

The word most often used to describe the Hindu vision of womanhood is “satī” — an ancient Sanskrit term for which there is no English equivalent. The literal meaning is “good” or “true”, but it implies much more – strength, courage, wisdom and selflessness. A satī woman is one who lives her life in a way that honors these qualities, striving to embody them in all she does.

According to Hindu scripture, the satī woman has a deep respect for her family and culture, is devoted to her husband and seeks to make her home a place of peace and harmony. She tries to serve and uplift those around her, and works to help bring out the best in everyone. She is prudent, full of devotion and far-sighted. People with such characteristics are said to have the spirit of satī.

In Hindu mythology, the perfect example of a satī woman is Sita, the devoted and compassionate wife of Rama in the Ramayana. Sita is an embodiment of strength, courage, and commitment in spite of profound suffering and trials. Her unwavering faithfulness and loyalty to Rama earn her the title of satī. In Hindu culture, particularly in India, she is revered and respected as an embodiment of true womanhood.

The values and traits associated with the satī woman are the same today as they were in the past. They embody what it means to be a virtuous woman in Hinduism, and is an ideal many young Hindu women strive to emulate. Indeed, even in modern-day India a woman who displays these qualities is seen as possessing a noble spirit.

Hinduism’s Respect for Women

Hinduism features many deities who are divine feminine figures, exemplifying the religion’s reverence for the feminine. While most Hindu deities (both male and female) lack human gender distinctions, certain goddesses are endowed with special qualities. Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, is a kind and gentle woman who can provide abundance to those who revere her. Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge and music, is a wise teacher and mentor. Parvati, the god of love, beauty and devotion, is a passionate and powerful woman.

Aside from the divine feminine figures, the roles of women in Hindu culture are also revered. A wife is seen as a partner who shares in the household duties, while mothers are considered powerful symbols of love, strength, and sacrifice. In some Hindu societies, the mother is also viewed as a role model who should be respected and followed by her children.

The origin of this respect for women is thought to come from goddess worship. Ancient Hindu texts such as the Rig Veda emphasize the importance of the feminine power, placing women on the same level of reverence as men. Likewise, from the Vedic period onwards, women have held significant roles in society, from being teachers and philosophers, to being respected and honored in Hindu art and literature.

Role of Women in Modern Hinduism

Despite some progress in recent decades, Hindu women continue to face numerous challenges. Issues such as gender inequality, lack of education, and health disparities are still prevalent. Even so, the status of women in modern Hinduism is slowly changing as more and more women begin to occupy positions of leadership and authority.

The rise of feminism and modern egalitarian values have helped to challenge traditional gender roles, allowing women to assume roles that were previously barred to them. This has opened up opportunities for women in a variety of fields, such as business, politics, and the arts. In addition, the emergence of new technologies and advances in healthcare have had a positive impact on the health and well-being of Hindu women.

In addition to these new opportunities, Hinduism places emphasis on the importance of education for both men and women. Education is seen as a way to spread knowledge and develop better understanding, and can help to reduce poverty, inequality and discrimination among Hindu communities. As a result, many Hindu women are now highly educated, and many have gone on to have successful careers in various fields.

Though modern Hindu society presents innumerable challenges and obstacles, there are also countless opportunities for women to rise above these obstacles and succeed. Hinduism places a strong emphasis on the importance of women and their roles in society, and today, many Hindu women are taking advantage of this by actively pursuing their goals and making a difference in their communities.

Challenges Hindu Women Face in the West

One of the major challenges that Hindu women face when moving to the West is the way in which their religion and culture can come into conflict with Western values. Many Hindu women find it difficult to practice their faith freely and without judgement, as Hinduism is often seen as a mysterious and strange religion.

In addition, Hindu women often face discrimination in the workplace due to the fact that they are perceived as being inferior to men due to their religious beliefs. This can cause them to feel isolated and disconnected, making it difficult for them to find employment and advance in their professional lives.

It is therefore important for Hindu women living in the West to have access to support and resources that can help them to better understand their culture and religion, and to find ways to reconcile their faith with modern Western life. Organizations like the Hindu American Foundation and the Indian American Forum for Political Education are great resources for Hindu women looking for support.

Moreover, Hindu women should take the time to educate themselves about their religion and culture, as well as the issues that affect the Hindu community in the West. Doing so will help them to better understand their rights as Hindu women, and how to navigate the complexities of living in a multi-cultural society. By becoming informed, Hindu women can help to promote acceptance and understanding within their communities.


Through her strength, courage, wisdom, and devotion, the Hindu woman is an example of the power and beauty of femininity. Hinduism is a religion that places great emphasis on the importance of the feminine, whether in its divine feminine figures, the roles of Hindu women, or their challnges in the West. While Hindu women continue to face many challnges, they are also creating a positive impact in the world and paving the way for even greater achievements in the future.

Jennifer Johnson is an experienced author with a deep passion for exploring the spiritual traditions of different cultures and religions. She has been writing about religion and spirituality for the past ten years in both print and digital platforms, engaging readers in meaningful dialogue about the soul's journey through this life. With degrees in Comparative Religion and English Literature, she brings an insightful perspective to her work that bridges the gap between traditional knowledge and modern theories. A lifelong traveler, Jenn has lived in multiple countries exploring various paths to understanding faith, and her dedication to learning new things is palpable in every piece she creates.

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