karnau pidhaya nirayad yad akalpa ise
dharmavitary asrnibhir nrbhir asyamane
chindyat prasahya rusatim asatim prabhus cej
jihvam asun api tato visrjet sa dharmah
karnau—both ears; pidhaya—blocking; nirayat—one should go away; yat—if; akalpah—unable; ise—the master; dharma-avitari—the controller of religion; asrnibhih—by irresponsible; nrbhih—persons; asyamane—being blasphemed; chindyat—he should cut; prasahya—by force; rusatim—vilifying; asatim—of the blasphemer; prabhuh—one is able; cet—if; jihvam—tongue; asun—(his own) life; api—certainly; tatah—then; visrjet—should give up; sah—that; dharmah—is the process.
Sati continued: If one hears an irresponsible person blaspheme the master and controller of religion, one should block his ears and go away if unable to punish him. But if one is able to kill, then one should by force cut out the blasphemer’s tongue and kill the offender, and after that one should give up his own life.
The argument offered by Sati is that a person who vilifies a great personality is the lowest of all creatures. But, by the same argument, Daksa could also defend himself by saying that since he was a Prajapati, the master of many living creatures and one of the great officers of the great universal affairs, his position was so exalted that Sati should accept his good qualities instead of vilifying him. The answer to that argument is that Sati was not vilifying but defending. If possible she should have cut out Daksa’s tongue because he blasphemed Lord Siva. In other words, since Lord Siva is the protector of religion, a person who vilifies him should be killed at once, and after killing such a person, one should give up one’s life. That is the process, but because Daksa happened to be the father of Sati, she decided not to kill him but to give up her own life in order to compensate for the great sin she had committed by hearing blasphemy of Lord Siva. The instruction set forth here in Srimad-Bhagavatam is that one should not tolerate at any cost the activities of a person who vilifies or blasphemes an authority. If one is a brahmana he should not give up his body because by doing so he would be responsible for killing a brahmana; therefore a brahmana should leave the place or block his ears so that he will not hear the blasphemy. If one happens to be a ksatriya he has the power to punish any man; therefore a ksatriya should at once cut out the tongue of the vilifier and kill him. But as far as the vaisyas and sudras are concerned, they should immediately give up their bodies. Sati decided to give up her body because she thought herself to be among the sudras and vaisyas. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (9.32), striyo vaisyas tatha sudrah. Women, laborers and the mercantile class are on the same level. Thus since it is recommended that vaisyas and sudras should immediately give up their bodies upon hearing blasphemy of an exalted person like Lord Siva, she decided to give up her life.
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