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Why Performing Sait?

             Superiority of men over women in many societies ever since emergence of the first civilizations has always been beyond dispute and created so many humanistic problems for women through their oppressed gender roles that were not recognized in these societies. Refusal of women's very basic rights even extended to a degree of legal murder in some cultures. A clear example of this rejection of women rights was seen in Hindu culture, which was mostly governed by Hinduism. In Hindu society, a widow had to burn herself in the pyre of her husband's corpse in the name of Sati custom and attributing to this phenomena Brahmins, top class of the society, maintained their position and endurance of the caste system. Therefore, we can say that role of women in Hindu society was not only predetermined by religion as it was supposed to be but also affected by Brahmins who benefited from unusual customs such as Sati. .
             The mythical background and the meaning given to Sati should be well comprehended before one tries to relate it to Hindu religion and the caste system. According to the myth, Sati was a goddess who was the daughter of Daksha. When Daksha denied Sati's husband Shiva, she was disappointed and she couldn't take this attitude of her father's, therefore she threw herself into fire. This way she showed her father how disappointed she was with him and proved her loyalty to her husband Shiva (Hawley, 1993, p.14). This myth had several different endings because of various interpretations caused by variant Indian culture. To some believes Sati was reincarnated into Parvati's body so in her new life she would be able to marry Shiva. But the most popular was the one that Hawley describes in his book: "Shiva took Sati's corpse from the fire and covered it with his sorrow. The God, Shiva, took the corpse across the world and gave her corpse to gods to be cared. Nevertheless after some time, gods forgot her body and pieces of the corpse fell down to all over the world.

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