AHALYA, Ahalya Story in Ramayana, Ahalya’s Husband name Gautam


The first woman; one of the five perfect women
The story of Ahalya has as many dimensions as it has versions. She appeared in the epic Ramayana but was also projected back to the beginning of the creation of this age (yuga). One account stated that Brahma created her as the first and most beautiful woman on earth. Then he gave her to the rishi (sage) Gautama. In most tellings, the rest of her story illustrated how a perfect woman should behave under the worst of circumstances. The villain was Indra, the Vedic god, reduced in the Ramayana to a minor but despicable role. In one version Indra changed his shape to appear to be Ahalya‘s husband and deceived her. In another he first changed into a rooster, crowed to make Gautama go outside for his morning devotions, and then took his place in bed. Another version attempted to mar her image, stating that Ahalya recognized Indra and was flattered by his advances. When the rishi discovered Indra’s crime, he cursed him, at the same time putting a curse on his wife that took away her beauty and expelled her into the forest. After many years of austerities and purification she was found by Lord Rama, rewarded for her devotion, and restored as chaste to her husband.
Ahalya was esteemed as one of the pahca-kanya, the five ideal women of Hinduism, along with Draupadi, Mandodari, Sita, and Tara.

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