Moral Compulsion – I have to … (because of my obligations)

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temple Two lessons ago we talked about Internal Compulsion.  I have to learn Hindi (because I want to learn it.)  Yesterday, we talked about external compulsion.  I have to learn Hindi (because my teacher is going to quiz me.).  Today we look at moral compulsion.  I have to learn Hindi (because it is the right thing to do.)

Before we get into moral compulsion, let us go over the translation questions at the end of yesterday’s “External Compulsion” episode.

1) I must read books in Hindi.

मुझको हिंदी में किताबें पढ़नी पड़ती हैं।

2) The students must study for class.

छात्रों को कक्षा के लिये पढ़ना पड़ता है।

3) The boy must play chess.

लड़के को शतरंज खेलना पड़ता है।


What is moral obligation?  It is something that you “should” or “ought to” do.


I should not drink alcohol.

मुझको शराब नहीं पीनी चाहिये।


Vegetarians ought not to eat meat.

शाकाहारी को मांस नहीं खाना चाहिये।


You should call your mom. 

आपको अपनी माता जी को कॉल करना चाहिये।  (you could also say फोन करना)

(At first, I thought it should be करनी because माता appeared to be the object.  However, it is really “call” that is getting done.  And this is why it is करना.)


You ought to go to school.

तुमको स्कूल जाना चाहिये।


Do you see the pattern?  Use the same form as internal compulsion.  This means that the verb agrees with the object in both number and gender. Then remove the helping verb on the end, and add चाहिये.  Notice that चाहिये does not change.

Try translating these sentences into Hindi:

1) You should eat vegetables.

2) He should take his medicine.

3) Sunil should study for school.

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Started in June 2007. Continue to work on to learn Hindi myself and to help others want to learn it. Nathan Price is the sole owner of