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Dharmasutras (Samskrit: धर्मसूत्राणि) are a class of ancient samskrit texts of Bharatavarsha, expounding the principles of dharma. Studied as a part of the Kalpa Vedanga texts, they are categorized as Sutragranthas, primarily because a majority of these texts are composed in Sutra style of writing or short terse aphorisms. The sutras lay equal stress on the trivarga; Dharma, Artha and Kama, but do not discuss anything at length about Moksha.<ref name=":0">Gopal, Ram. (1959) ''India of Vedic Kalpasutras.'' Delhi : National Publishing House</ref>
== परिचयः॥ Introduction ==
== Typical Features of Dharmasutras ==
Mention usually as the third of the Kalpasutras, Dharmasutras have some characteristics which set them apart from the other texts of Kalpas.
=== Sutra style of Writing ===
The word dharmasutra means the sutras dealing with dharma. A sutra which a means a short or concise technical sentence (condensing a large meaning within), is the characteristic style if writing in which many ancient texts were composed. Brevity of the subject-matter is the important feature of the sutragranthas. However, these sutras are not the same as the vyakarana sutras such as those
seen in Panini's Ashtadhyayi.
=== समयाचारधर्मः ॥ Samayachara Dharmas ===
Sanyasa ashrama follows the Vanaprastha. It is the fourth stage of human life and signifies renunciation of worldly possessions and attachments to relations. The Dharmasutras prescribe a code of standard conduct for a Sanyasin and enjoin upon him to refrain from participation in activities such as astrology, palmistry etc and lead a life of complete resignation, contentment, and meditation.
'''Other Topics:''' Apart from the above topics which form a major portion of these treatises, Dharmasutras dwell on Naimittika dharma, enumerate various types of papakarmas (sins) and atonement for them by performing penances. They also explain about Saucha and Asaucha (impurities related to events of birth and death) and the process of cleansing after
periods of asaucha.
== Individual Dharmasutras ==
|Samaveda, Rananiyashaka according to Charanavyuha
|Widely accepted as the earliest DS text
|Four prasnas (only two are regarded as original)
|28th and 29th Prashnas of Apastamba Kalpa both in sutra and sloka format