|India is truly a land of Kama - the god of desire.
Let's face it. Sex is one of the most important basic instincts.
I feel sorry that I was not born in 300 A.D. and be a disciple of Vatsayana. It is ironic that in the country
which gave the world KamaSutra - sex is a taboo.
India is famous for its rich heritage and customs. The country has about
16 percent of the world’s total population. Next only to China, India is the most
second most populous country in the world. Though India has crossed the generally
acceptable limits in per capita population - that grows only with sex, still sex is a
taboo in India.
In a nation as religiously and ethnically diverse as India - the people follow
a wide variety of customs, and have varied beliefs that ultimately mould their
lifestyles. In the life of a Hindu male, for instance, marriage
is regarded as necessary, because without a wife he cannot enter the
Grihasthasrama (the life stage of a householder). In addition, without marriage
there can be no offspring (not that India does not have the problems of
illegitimate children), and without a son no release from the chain of reincarnation in birth-death-rebirth. But, the objective of such a pious relation is still not to
enjoy the life of togetherness in most Indian families.
Although there is a decreasing acceptance of orthodox beliefs and religious
practices among India’s younger generation, each of India’s religious traditions
maintains its own forms of observations of various practices starting with birth
and regulating life through marriage to the death ceremonies. The lifestyles of
the people, including their sexual behavior, are generally governed by these
The fate of sexuality within marriage is likely to come under an evil
constellation of stars. According to Hindu tradition, a husband should only
approach his wife sexually during her ritu (season), a period of sixteen days
within the menstrual cycle. But intercourse is forbidden on six of these sixteen
days, the first four days, and the eleventh and thirteenth. This leaves only ten
days for conjugal relations, but since the all-important sons are conceived only
on even nights and daughters on uneven nights, the days for conjugal relations
shrinks to five. Then there are the parvas, the moonless nights and those of the full
moon when sexual relations lead either to the birth of atheist sons (Brahma Purana)
or the “hell of feces and urine” (Vishnu Purana). Add to these taboos, the
many festival days for gods and ancestors when erotic pleasures are forbidden.
Sex is also beyond the pale during the day.
And just the culture does not effects the sex life of Indians, the people
themselves do not try to enjoy the passion. Most women have their experiences
with sexual intercourse as a furtive act in a cramped room, lasting barely a
few minutes and with a marked absence of physical or emotional caressing. They
do it as a duty, an experience to be submitted to, often from a fear of losing
their husband to another woman but not as need to love and have sex.
Despite these pervasive negative images of the conflict between the sexes
in marriage, and the negative view of women and sexuality, it must be pointed
out that Indian sexual relations are not devoid of regular pauses in the conflict
between man and woman. Crave for sex, a plunge into the depths of erotic passion,
sexual ecstasy of a husband and wife who have found their way through the forest
of sexual taboos, do exist in India at every nick and corner of India.
So, one cannot say that sex is really a taboo here. Mira Nair came out openly
with her film Kama Sutra were she just wanted to convey to the world
that the Bollywood screen is open for such erotic passion to see and it is
not a taboo. She proved that we Indians can also do it on screens without a
purdha and show that sex is not still in cramped rooms in this taboo land of sex.
India is truly a land of Kama - the god of desire.