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Dharmashastras Books in Hindi - Guide to Ancient Indian Law and Ethics


Q1. What are known as Hindu law book?

Manu-smriti, (Sanskrit: “Laws of Manu”) also called Manava-dharma-shastra, is traditionally the most authoritative of the books of the Hindu code (Dharma-shastra) in India. By Manu brahmana.


'Mitakshara' on the Yajnavalkya Smriti is best known for its theory of "inheritance by birth" written by Vijnanesvara


The Dayabhaga is a Hindu law treatise written by Jimutavahana


 “Principles of Hindu Law” by Tahir Mahmood


Veda- Shrutis are the major source of Hindu law.


Hindu Law: A New History of Dharmaśāstra by Patrick Olivelle, Donald Richard Davis


Hindu Law by Werner F. Menski


Sources of Hindu Law by Debanshu khettry

Q2. What are the four sources of Hindu law?


There are mainly 4 ancient sources of Hindu law namely – Shruti, Smriti, Commentary and Digest, Custom


Shrutis is what we heard from our ancestors. There are four Shrutis which are known as Rig Veda, Yajur Veda, Sam Veda, and Atharva Veda.


Smriti: remembered and written down by the sages - Dharmashastras and Dharmasutras. The Manusmriti, Yajnavalkya Smriti, Narada Smriti.


Commentary and Digest:  also known as Tika or Bhashya. Mitakshara and Dayabhaga


Customs: those traditions, activities, and practices which the people are following for a very long time, and over time they received the force of law.

Q3. Are the Dharma Shastras still relevant in today's world?


Dharma Shastras are treatises based on the Vedic scriptures that talk about the code of conduct for all living beings, irrespective of their religion or beliefs. Just like the rules and regulations formulated by the government, Dharma Shastras are the rules made by God. Although the Vedas and Puranas are thousands of years old, whatever is mentioned there is still relevant to human civilization for eternity. Therefore, the principles of Dharma Shastras are also relevant in today’s world, for everyone.


Q4. What is the difference between the Dharmasutra and the Dharmashastra?


The Dharma Shastras and the Dharma Sutras are the science of righteousness given in the Vedic literature. They mention the principles of Dharma, and moral conduct for the human society to lead a peaceful life and ultimately to discharge the duty of the soul. The difference between the two treatises is that the Dharma Shastras are based on the Vedas (Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yajur Veda, and Atharva Veda) and are written in poetry form, while the Dharma Sutras are based on Puranas and are written in prose.


Q5. What is the difference between Vedas and Dharmashastras?


Vedas are a part of the Vedic literature and are the source of the complete material and spiritual wisdom. There are four main Vedas; Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yajur Veda, and Atharva Veda. These are the oldest sacred texts in Hinduism to have been revealed to human society through the great saints and sages. Dharma Shastras are a part of the Vedas that mention the rules and regulations to be followed by humans in order to elevate their consciousness. It is recommended to follow the Varnashrama Dharma given in the Dharma Shastras to lead a peaceful life and thus to be able to advance spiritually.


Q6. Which is the best book on Dharmashastras?


Exotic India has a treasure of great books on Dharma Shastras, the law of conduct for humans in Hinduism. Among many books, the one authentic book which is the best to know about the Dharma Shastras is “धर्मशास्त्रसंग्रह (हिन्दी टीका सहीत)- Dharmashastra Sangraha (With Hindi Commentary)” by Babu Sadhucharan Prasad Ji. This book contains Sanskrit texts of the Dharma Shastras which have been translated into simple Hindi. The author has also given his commentary on each text.