Lord Shiva's answer, after a somewhat superfluous eulogy to his consort, begins with a definition of sin. 'In doing what is forbidden and in the omitting of what is enjoined men sin, and sins lead to pain, sorrow, and disease'. There are two kinds of sin that which only causes injury of one? own self, and that which causes injury to others. Those who have sinned against others may be punished by the king and thereby absolved, while those who sin against themselves can repent of it only through Samadhi.
Shiva then relates the duties of the King when he is punishing the misdeeds of his subject, and warns that even the king who does not adhere to these principles himself goes on 'the downward path'. In the administration of justice, servants, sons, mendicants, friends, and foes should all be treated alike.
If the King is guilty of any sin himself, or if he has wronged an innocent, he may purify himself by fasting and by placating those he has wronged by gifts. If the King considers himself guilty of any sin counted as a capital offense, he should abdicate his kingdom and go to a forest, and there labour for his liberation and penances. The King should not, without sufficient reason, inflict heavy punishment on persons guilty of a light offence, nor should he inflict light punishment on persons guilty of a great offense. In the case of an offender who is prone to crime, the punishment must be heavy, even if the offense is light.
In the case of one who has committed the offense just once and is ashamed of it, a light punishment should be inflicted, even if the offence is a grave one. If a Kaula or a Brahmin is guilty of a slight offence, they should be punished by the King by a rebuke.
The punishments for sexual deviance and infidelity are the most grievous. Shiva lists a series of sexual crimes, including incest and adultery, and metes out the strictest punishments for them. Incest should be punished with death and several counts of intercourse with extended kinswomen involve castration for the male and the cutting off the nose of the female if she was a willing participant. The female should also be turned out of the house. Normal adultery is punished with a fine. Committing adultery with a Brahmin's wife is again to be punished with castration, and the woman to be turned out with a cut nose if she was willing. Many more legal injunctions for crimes follow, including the rules regarding guardianship of children and taking care of older kinsmen. Interestingly, Shiva characterizes a woman who causes a miscarriage for a five month old foetus as a homicide, and bids it to be punished very severely. Suicide is also severely punished and considered homicide.
Several minor expiatory rites are also prescribed for men or women who commit venal sins like cupidity or anger, calumny, etc. These usually involve fasting, fine and disciplinary punishments. Some of these also involve misuse of the pancha tattva, such as consuming them without consecrating them first. There are also injunctions against consuming the flesh of the bull or cow, considered sacred. There are also rules regarding hunting and the slaughter of beasts.
There are also rules regarding ritual purity of water, which is said to be tainted by the dead bodies of animals or humans. Several purificatory rites for these situations are also prescribed.
All other sins, whether committed knowingly or unknowingly, are absolved by repeating the Gayatri of the Devi and feeding Kaulas. The father, the mother, and the giver of the Brahman are the Maha-gurus and those who speak ill of these must fast for five days. These general rules are applicable to men, women, and the sexless; the only difference being that for women their husband is their maha-guru.
'In this Shastra spoken by Shiva the meanings of the words used are plain; those who put far-fetched meanings upon them go the downward path.' - the text here clearly warns against casuistry regarding the interpretation of these rules and laws.
After eulogising again on the matter of the chapter, Shiva's address ends.
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