By Swami Harshananda
Origin of Paiṭhinasi
The Vedas and the Upaniṣads give a general outline of philosophy and ethics. They do not deal with the daily routine or social conduct of persons living in their society. This, however, has been done by later writers through whose works, evolved a set of literature which is now well-known as dharmaśāstras. One of the earliest works in the category of dharmasutras is that of Paithīnasi. Though his work has not been recovered, fragments of the same have been culled from other works which have quoted him. He perhaps was a follower of Atharvaveda. His period is not known approximately.
Topics of Literature by Paiṭhinasi
A few of the topics on which he has been quoted are:
- Marriage within the gotra permitted if it is beyond third degree on mother’s side and beyond the fifth on father’s side
- Service to the husband as the greatest austerity for a wife
- The practice of satī
- Inheritance of the property of a son-less man after his death
- Observance of aśauca at certain times like marriage or famine or pilgrimage
- Satī means immolation of the wife on the funeral pyre of her husband.
- Aśauca means ceremonial impurity.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math,