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Arsha Vivaha In Hindu Religion

Arsha Vivaha is one of the eight types of marriage legally valid in Hindu religion. In the Arsha Vivaha, the bridegroom gives away one or two go-mithuna to the bride’s father and accepts the bride. It was believed that the go-mithuna so received must be used only for the yajna ritual. According to Vira-Mitrodaya, this was not a price for the bride as its quantity was limited. Avinash Chandra Das opines in his book ‘The Rigvedic Culture’ that when a girl was married to a rishi, owing to his spiritual excellence, the marriage is known as arsha. However, it is not clear how the giving away of go-mithuna is to be  linked therewith. If the daughter is given away for the rishi’s spiritual merit, how could the gift of go-mithuna be associated with it? Manusmriti has raised the point that the gift of go-mithuna is not proper even if the price is only meager.