Kama Sutra, The





The wives of other people may be resorted to on the occasions already described in Part I., Chapter 5, of this work, but the possibility of their acquisition, their fitness for cohabitation, the danger to oneself in uniting with them, and the future effect of these unions, should first of all be examined. A man may resort to the wife of another, for the purpose of saving his own life, when he perceives that his love for her proceeds from one degree of intensity to another. These degrees are ten in number, and are distinguished by the following marks:

  1. Love of the eye.
  2. Attachment of the mind.
  3. Constant reflection.
  4. Destruction of sleep.
  5. Emaciation of the body.
  6. Turning away from objects of enjoyment.
  7. Removal of shame.
  8. Madness.
  9. Fainting.
  10. Death.

Ancient authors say that a man should know the disposition, truthfulness, purity, and will of a young woman, as also the intensity, or weakness of her passions, from the form of her body, and from her characteristic marks and signs. But Vatsyayana is of opinion that the forms of bodies, and the characteristic marks or signs are but erring tests of character, and that women should be judged by their conduct, by the outward expression of their thoughts, and by the movements of their bodies.

Now as a general rule Gonikaputra says that a woman falls in love with every handsome man she sees, and so does every man at the sight of a beautiful woman, but frequently they do not take any further steps, owing to various considerations. In love the following circumstances are peculiar to the woman. She loves without regard to right or wrong,[58] and does not try to gain over a man simply for the attainment of some particular purpose. Moreover, when a man first makes up to her she naturally shrinks from him, even though she may be willing to unite herself with him. But when the attempts to gain her are repeated and renewed, she at last consents. But with a man, even though he may have begun to love, he conquers his feelings from a regard for morality and wisdom, and although his thoughts are often on the woman, he does not yield, even though an attempt be made to gain him over. He sometimes makes an attempt or effort to win the object of his affections, and having failed, he leaves her alone for the future. In the same way, when a woman is once gained, he often becomes indifferent about her. As for the saying that a man does not care for what is easily gained, and only desires a thing which cannot be obtained without difficulty, it is only a matter of talk.

The causes of a woman rejecting the addresses of a man are as follows:

  1. Affection for her husband.
  2. Desire of lawful progeny.
  3. Want of opportunity.
  4. Anger at being addressed by the man too familiarly.
  5. Difference in rank of life.
  6. Want of certainty on account of the man being devoted to travelling.
  7. Thinking that the man may be attached to some other person.
  8. Fear of the man's not keeping his intentions secret.
  9. Thinking that the man is too devoted to his friends, and has too great a regard for them.
  10. The apprehension that he is not in earnest.
  11. Bashfulness on account of his being an illustrious man.
  12. Fear on account of his being powerful, or possessed of too impetuous passion, in the case of the deer woman.
  13. Bashfulness on account of his being too clever.
  14. The thought of having once lived with him on friendly terms only.
  15. Contempt of his want of knowledge of the world.
  16. Distrust of his low character.
  17. Disgust at his want of perception of her love for him.
  18. In the case of an elephant woman, the thought that he is a hare man, or a man of weak passion.
  19. Compassion lest any thing should befall him on account of his passion.
  20. Despair at her own imperfections.
  21. Fear of discovery.
  22. Disillusion at seeing his grey hair or shabby appearance.
  23. Fear that he may be employed by her husband to test her chastity.
  24. The thought that he has too much regard for morality.

Whichever of the above causes a man may detect, he should endeavour to remove it from the very beginning. Thus, the bashfulness that may arise from his greatness or his ability, he should remove by showing his great love and affection for her. The difficulty of the want of opportunity, or if his inaccessibility, he should remove by showing her some easy way of access. The excessive respect entertained by the woman for him should be removed by making himself very familiar. The difficulties that arise from his being thought a low character he should remove by showing his valour and his wisdom; those that come from neglect by extra attention; and those that arise from fear by giving her proper encouragement.

The following are the men who generally obtain success with women.

  1. Men well versed in the science of love.
  2. Men skilled in telling stories.
  3. Men acquainted with women from their childhood.
  4. Men who have secured their confidence.
  5. Men who send presents to them.
  6. Men who talk well.
  7. Men who do things that they like.
  8. Men who have not loved other women previously.
  9. Men who act as messengers.
  10. Men who knew their weak points.
  11. Men who are desired by good women.
  12. Men who are united with their female friends.
  13. Men who are good looking.
  14. Men who have been brought up with them.
  15. Men who are their neighbours.
  16. Men who are devoted to sexual pleasures, even though these be their own servants.
  17. The lovers of the daughters of their nurse.
  18. Men who have been lately married.
  19. Men who like picnics and pleasure parties.
  20. Men who are liberal.
  21. Men who are celebrated for being very strong (Bull men).
  22. Enterprising and brave men.
  23. Men who surpass their husbands in learning and good looks, in good quality, and in liberality.
  24. Men whose dress and manner of living are magnificent.

The following are the women who are easily gained over.

  1. Women who stand at the doors of their houses.
  2. Women who are always looking out on the street.
  3. Women who sit conversing in their neighbour's house.
  4. A woman who is always staring at you.
  5. A female messenger.
  6. A woman who looks sideways at you.
  7. A woman whose husband has taken another wife without any just cause.
  8. A woman who hates her husband or is hated by him.
  9. A woman who has nobody to look after her, or keep her in check.
  10. A woman who has not had any children.
  11. A woman whose family or caste is not well known.
  12. A woman whose children are dead.
  13. A woman who is very fond of society.
  14. A woman who is apparently very affectionate with her husband.
  15. The wife of an actor.
  16. A widow.
  17. A poor woman.
  18. A woman fond of enjoyments.
  19. The wife of a man with many younger brothers.
  20. A vain woman.
  21. A woman whose husband is inferior to her in rank or abilities.
  22. A woman who is proud of her skill in the arts.
  23. A woman disturbed in mind by the folly of her husband.
  24. A woman who has been married in her infancy to a rich man, and not liking him when she grows up, desires a man possessing a disposition, talents, and wisdom suitable to her own tastes.
  25. A woman who is slighted by her husband without any cause.
  26. A woman who is not respected by other women of the same rank or beauty as herself.
  27. A woman whose husband is devoted to travelling.
  28. The wife of a jeweller.
  29. A jealous woman.
  30. A covetous woman.
  31. An immoral woman.
  32. A barren woman.
  33. A lazy woman.
  34. A cowardly woman.
  35. A humpbacked woman.
  36. A dwarfish woman.
  37. A deformed woman.
  38. A vulgar woman.
  39. An ill-smelling woman.
  40. A sick woman.
  41. An old woman.

There was also two verses on the subject as follows:

"Desire, which springs from nature, and which is increased by art, and from which all danger is taken away by wisdom, becomes firm and secure. A clever man, depending on his own ability, and observing carefully the ideas and thoughts of women, and removing the causes of their turning away from men, is generally successful with them."



Ancient authors are of opinion that girls are not so easily seduced by employing female messengers as by the efforts of the man himself, but that the wives of others are more easily got at by the aid of female messengers than by the personal efforts of a man. But Vatsyayana lays it down that whenever it is possible a man should always act himself in these matters, and it is only when such is impracticable, or impossible, that female messengers should be employed. As for the saying that women who act and talk boldly and freely are to be won by the personal efforts of the man, and that women who do not possess those qualities are to be got at by female messengers, it is only a matter of talk.

Now when a man acts himself in the matter he should first of all make the acquaintance of the woman he loves in the following manner.

1st. He should arrange to be seen by the woman either on a natural or special opportunity. A natural opportunity is when one of them goes to the house of the other, and a special opportunity is when they meet either at the house of a friend, or a caste-fellow, or a minister, or a physician, as also on the occasion of marriage ceremonies, sacrifices, festivals, funerals, and garden parties.

2nd. When they do meet, the man should be careful to look at her in such a way as to cause the state of his mind to be made known to her; he should pull about his moustache, make a sound with his nails, cause his own ornaments to tinkle, bite his lower lip, and make various other signs of that description. When she is looking at him he should speak to his friends about her and other women, and should show to her his liberality and his appreciation of enjoyments. When sitting by the side of a female friend he should yawn and twist his body, contract his eyebrows, speak very slowly as if he were weary, and listen to her indifferently. A conversation having two meanings should also be carried on with a child or some other person, apparently having regard to a third person, but really having reference to the woman he loves, and in this way his love should be made manifest under the pretext of referring to others rather than to herself. He should make marks that have reference to her, on the earth with his nails, or with a stick, and should embrace and kiss a child in her presence, and give it the mixture of betel nut and betel leaves with his tongue, and press its chin with his fingers in a caressing way. All these things should be done at the proper time and in proper places.

3rd. The man should fondle a child that may be sitting on her lap, and give it something to play with, and also take the same back again. Conversation with respect to the child may also be held with her, and in this manner he should gradually become well acquainted with her, and he should also make himself agreeable to her relations. Afterwards, this acquaintance should be made a pretext for visiting her house frequently, and on such occasions he should converse on the subject of love in her absence, but within her hearing. As his intimacy with her increases he should place in her charge some kind of deposit or trust, and take away from it a small portion at a time; or he may give her some fragrant substances, or betel nuts to be kept for him by her. After this he should endeavour to make her well acquainted with his own wife, and get them to carry on confidential conversations, and to sit together in lonely places. In order to see her frequently he should arrange that the same goldsmith, the same jeweller, the same basket maker, the same dyer, and the same washerman should be employed by the two families. And he should also pay her long visits openly under the pretence of being engaged with her on business, and one business should lead to another, so as to keep up the intercourse between them. Whenever she wants anything, or is in need of money, or wishes to acquire skill in one of the arts, he should cause her to understand that he is willing and able to do anything that she wants, to give her money, or teach her one of the arts, all these things being quite within his ability and power. In the same way he should hold discussions with her in company with other people, and they should talk of the doings and sayings of other persons, and examine different things, like jewellery, precious stones, etc. On such occasions he should show her certain things with the values of which she may be unacquainted, and if she begins to dispute with him about the things or their value, he should not contradict her, but point out that he agrees with her in every way.

Thus ends the ways of making the acquaintance of the woman desired.

Now after a girl has become acquainted with the man as above described, and has manifested her love to him by the various outward signs; and by the motions of her body, the man should make every effort to gain her over. But as girls are not acquainted with sexual union, they should be treated with the greatest delicacy, and the man should proceed with considerable caution, though in the case of other women, accustomed to sexual intercourse, this is not necessary. When the intentions of the girl are known, and her bashfulness put aside, the man should begin to make use of her money, and an interchange of clothes, rings, and flowers should be made. In this the man should take particular care that the things given by him are handsome and valuable. He should moreover receive from her a mixture of betel nut and betel leaves, and when he is going to a party he should ask for the flower in her hair, or for the flower in her hand. If he himself gives her a flower it should be a sweet smelling one, and marked with marks made by his nails or teeth. With increasing assiduity he should dispel her fears, and by degrees get her to go with him to some lonely place, and there he should embrace and kiss her. And finally at the time of giving her some betel nut, or of receiving the same from her, or at the time of making an exchange of flowers, he should touch and press her private parts, thus bringing his efforts to a satisfactory conclusion.

When a man is endeavouring to seduce one woman, he should not attempt to seduce any other at the same time. But after he had succeeded with the first, and enjoyed her for a considerable time, he can keep her affections by giving her presents that she likes, and then commence making up to another woman. When a man sees the husband of a woman going to some place near his house, he should not enjoy the woman then, even though she may be easily gained over at that time. A wise man having a regard for his reputation should not think of seducing a woman who is apprehensive, timid, not to be trusted, well guarded, or possessed of a father-in-law, or mother-in-law.

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