Was Swami Dayanand Saraswati in favor of or against Widow Remarriage?

tornada

Ad Honoris
Mar 2013
15,385
India
So I've now gone over two or three different history texts. They all seem to contradict each other. Some day that the Arya Samaj ideology favouring widow remarriage was not shared by Swami Dayanand Saraswati who was personally against it. Other texts argue that he was infact in favor of the reform. These are all Indian history texts that deal with the Arya Samaj in a peripheral manner. They aren't specifically about religious reform movements in India. Could someone tell me which view is correct? Preferably I'd like some reference to a primary source, like some speech or work by Swami Dayanand. Alternatively someone dealing specifically with the Arya Samaj and its history would also be ok, so long as that author is substantiating his claims. Obviously a reference to an Indian History book wouldn't be adequate since it is the contradiction in their work that I'm trying to resolve.

Thanks
 

tornada

Ad Honoris
Mar 2013
15,385
India
@SSDD, I would tend to agree. The problem however is that these are the aoume type of sources I've come across. They are invariably third tier sources. Like the first link. It doesn't quote swami Saraswati. It quotes Gandhi, who I assume is quoting Dayanand. Problem is its tertiary. We similarly have texts and sources which argue that he was not in favor, instead this was something later Arya Samajis favored. Would you have a more direct source?

Reading over your source though, I find an interesting nuance. The first author states that he was in favor of widow remarriage where no intercourse takes place. Does this mean he was against remarriage where intercourse had occurred? Is it possible different people are interpreting this position to mean both in favor and against?
 

SSDD

Ad Honorem
Aug 2014
3,900
India
No I dont have. Perhaps I should make a speculation. Dayanand Saraswati always tried to go back to Vedic Hinduism. So naything that was okay in Vedic Hinduism should be reintroduced he thought. Now many of such things were taboo in 19th century India. For example he at first was not very much concerned about cow as beef was eaten in Vedic era. But soon 19th century's reality made him think otherwise and he launched cow protection movement.

Now guess in case of widow remarriage same repeated. IIRC it was okay widows to remarry in Vedic era, but in 19th century it was not. So perhaps he at first wanted widow remarriage for every case, but soon conservative society of 19th century made him moved away. So he began to insist in those cases where no intercourse happened widow remarriage was okay. So he specially supported remarriage of child widows since then many 10-12 year old girls were married 50-60 year old man.