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Women of India

Are Hindu women as unsafe as the media proclaims?

"Shasana Sundari", a women writing a letter in the Jalasangi village temple in Karnataka from the period of Kalyani Chalukyas. At that time, rule was purely on Hindu principles. Muslim, Christian or western narrative did not exist. It clearly proves, women in India knew reading and writing. Image credit to Arun Bharadwaj

In so many families today, the children think they know better than the parents and in most societies believe they know more than the most highly educated. In our world of nations where it is now becoming increasingly evident that India is the mother of all nations, because India is the humble mother she is a target for so many criticisms and outright attacks because humility is no longer seen as a human virtue.

In our modern civilisation where everyone is enslaved yet believes they are free and opinions matter, there always has to be a scapegoat. This has made the rule of law a travesty as for instance a considerable percentage of the prison population in most countries is innocent and even in the USA, it's thought that 10% of people on death row are innocent.

Recently in the news in addition to the repeated stories of rapes and acid attacks, the Thomson Reuters Foundation ranked India as the world's most dangerous country for women, ahead of Afghanistan, Syria and Saudi Arabia, countries renowned for their absence of human rights and abuse of women.

Anyone with any real knowledge of India knows that this report is entirely false and just another page in the criticism of India because it politely refuses to react to these provocations. For one, the government is busy improving the welfare of the population and has little time for such trivia, and the intelligentsia unconcerned with Western values and ideas understand the stupidity but have little time for such distractions.

There is no denying that crime India is a problem, yet there is a great sense of injustice as rapes in the USA that has little over 1/4 of India's population goes largely unreported whereas a rape in India makes international headlines. For instance in India 2010, there were 1.8 rapes per 100,000 and a total of 22172 whereas in the USA there were 27.3 rapes per 100,000 with a total of 84767. On these figures from Wikipedia, there were 62,595 more rapes in the USA than in India showing the USA as far more dangerous.

The BBC asks, does this Thomson Reuters ranking matter and goes on to say it does because it shows India has lost the battle of public perception which matters more than truth.

Do not subscribe to the view that, Women were suppressed in India (A narrative from leftist, Feminist, Liberals, who try to template India from western templates gives a picture that, Women were denied opportunity of education in India.

Before the arrival of Islam, colonialism and Christianity, India was the most academically advanced nation in the world and women played an important role in the academic field. Of course women are the natural homemakers and supporters of men in their endeavours, but there is a long history going back for many thousands of years showing that women had the same academic opportunities as men and even when the British arrived in India, it is thought there was around 95% literacy without any discrimination between men and women. Discrimination and subjugation was a foreign imposition on India.

In today's world that is governed by opinion, where women's bodies are highly sexualised, where acid attacks are becoming normal in Britain along with all the rapes, bullying and other forms of intimidation, the women of India are safer than almost anywhere else in the world perhaps with the exception of Japan. In today's India as in the ancient past, women are more than just homemakers, they are scholars, teachers, industry leaders and entrepreneurs.

Sarla Thakral (1914-2008) was an Indian aviator, the first woman in her country to fly an aircraft. She obtained her pilot license in 1936, at the age of 21. She was the first woman to obtain an ‘A’ license in India, after she accumulated over a thousand hours of flying. In addition to this, she was an artist and business woman, designing clothes and jewellery.

Credible Indian History provides more historic context:

The oldest book of the world "Rigveda" has references to female personalities composing Rigvedic Hymns. This clearly shows, Women were "Educated" right from beginning. No discrimination of what so ever is visible in "Indian History" before Muslim invasion. If they wanted to contribute, they were welcomed and encouraged. Mathematics book "Leelavathi" was composed by a women.

There are women warriors depicted on temple walls. Durga was shown, so that, women should not feel any fear in assuming "warrior" roles, if required. Consider this famous seal from Harappa, where in a women fights 2 tigers (fighting 1 tiger itself is difficult) with her bare hands. Why does it even exist? It is a live testimony that, in Saraswathi-Sindhu civilization, women were not subjugated. They were respected and revered.

In Ramayana, Kaikeyi accompanies Dasharatha to Battlefield. Because of her valour, she earns the 3 boons. When Abhimanyu looses sense, his mother, who was sitting next to him, start to fight Ghatotchkacha in "Mahabharatha".
In history, Ashoka fights a "Queen" from Kalinga. Ashoka was a "Great Emperor". If a "lady was his opponent" leading a large army, what does it Indicate? It is not one of an example, there are many examples that comes up in Mythology, Purana's, Vedas and Indian History.

Among firsts, Bengali born Cornelia Sorabji studied law at Somerville College, Oxford from 1889 to 1893 and was the first woman of any race to sit the English Civil Law exam.

Consider any "Swayamwara" scene from any Hindu stories. The bride chooses her companion at will. The mighty "Rama" and "Ravana" both attended Seetha swayamwara. Seetha was just a "tender" bride. Her father Janaka, was not mightier than any of the kings in the event. But she was given the option to choose. The bride "decides" in-spite of her "Weak" position in the deal. Same in Draupadi swayamvara. Draupadi's consent was taken to marry 5 brothers. It was not forced. Kalidasa story depicts same. The princess chooses her companion after questioning many "Kings". It doesn't show an iota of subjugation, but highest standard of "civility". It shows maintaining "Equity" among men and women (irrespective of their power position).

The cradle of Indian civilization, Rivers Saraswathi, Ganga, Yamuna, Kaveri, Nethravathi, Godavari, Narmada, Sindhu .you name it, most all rivers are named after "feminine" power. The rivers were worshiped and respected on a daily basis. If women were subjugated, will the "powerful men", not name the rivers after their own names? We do not see it at all. Respecting "Mother - first" is the culture of this land (Mathru devo Bhava comes before Pitru devo Bhava) . This is the culture we see all along in this holy land.

Out of compassion and respect, Women in India, were never subjected to Capital punishment. Worst offenders like killing a king by poison were also not beheaded, but debarred to forest. Like "Brahmins", Women were considered as "Pious". You do not see even one example of a women getting beheaded in any Indian story. Powerful men never ever used to fight against a single "Woman". Showing power against helpless and non-equal opponent was considered as "derogatory". Because, Showing Power on a helpless woman was considered as mental weakness. That guy was branded as unfit to face the mighty and hence showing his power on a weak woman. He would get "shame" of his life and never ever could live in society.

That is why, Bheeshma refuses to fight "woman" in battle. Ravana was advised to let of seetha, because, he used his power against a helpless woman. That was considered as derogatory not just for Ravan, but for entire Lanka. Infact Ravan was advised to return sita, face Ram, kill him and then obtain Sita. That was the "Logic". When Bharatha wanted to "Kill" His mother and her attendant for conspiring to send "Rama" to forest, Rama stops him and advises to pardon them. Punishing any woman using "State power" was considered as derogatory for "Kings". Rama never harness any "hate" and takes blessings from "Kaikei" too before proceeding to forest. That sets the high "Benchmark" for Indian culture and tradition.

So, where is the question of women discrimination? It all started, when Muslim invaders start to mistreat women from the "defeated" lot. Women were taken hostage and sold as "sex slaves" in Arabic lands. That is when the situation changes. Megasthanese, in his Indica documents that, there was no "slavery" of what so kind in India. Neither men nor women were held as slaves. Women subjugation comes from "Slave" mentality followed by Abrahamic religions.

Why all these, the god of wisdom & knowledge itself is attributed to "Saraswathi", a feminine power. If women were supposed to be denied "education", then why will they depict a lady god for "education"? Simple and plain. In fact all the three supreme powers, Knowledge (Saraswathi), Wealth (Lakshmi) & Physical strength (Durga) are encapsulated as faminine characters. The land is considered as "Mother Land". So, if at all there is any religion or country that respected "Women" from beginning, it is Hindus and India. "Mother goddess" worship was found in Harappan civilization. The idols that were obtained was only feminine figures. No "Male" god figures were retrieved till now.

Does "Jagadguru, shankaracharya" (considered as the highest authority on knowledge for the Advaitha tatwa) bowing before "Saraswathi" show male domination? Does Adi shankara selecting his opponents wife as judge, show male domination? Does Kali thumping her leg on shiva show "male domination"?

Indian society was much much mature than the way these leftist liberals are depicting. Stop subscribing to this "brain washing" leftist propaganda of women subjugation in India. It is aimed at "fetching votes from women folks", who are nearly 50% of the vote bank. If anybody says this again, then please show this post and ask them to explain how they arrived at their erroneous opinion.

Credible Indian History

Further reading"
Exploitation of Women
The Ascent of Women
Demeaning Women
Women in the Vedic Field

 

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