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Is Hinduism gender biased?

Thursday, October 04, 2018

It is not so! Probably men made the rules and so they imposed many on women. Earlier women were at home and they had a lot of free time and so they took on all these rituals by themselves.

What has happened is that the men don’t follow all the rules and rituals. Women observed all the rituals religiously because they are more sentimental and are the binding force at home between everybody. So women care for the welfare of everyone.

But men who went out and worked, in ancient days they also had Ekadashi fast. It is all common to everybody. Men are also supposed to do, though sometimes they don't do it. Even men are supposed to wear tilak, and married men are supposed to wear two sacred threads. So in this country men and women both have to follow certain rituals.

In fact women have one step higher honor in this country. Like we first say Radhe and then Shyam, first Sita and then Ram, Gauri and then Shankar. Women were honored much more from ancient times.

So men and women are equal; rather women are kept one step higher than men in this country.

You know there is what is called ‘Sthreedhan’ in ancient India. In the whole continent, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Singapore, men would keep a certain amount of money with women at home and nobody would touch that money. That was called ‘Sthreedhan’. That is the money that she would grow at home.

Women were respected more than anything else. Like female feticide is a very wrong thing that is happening in this country now. In a country where women were given the most respect.

It is said, the most sinful act is killing a cow. If you kill 100 cows, it is equivalent to killing one scholar; killing 100 scholars is equivalent to killing one saint, and if you butcher 100 saints it is equivalent to harming one girl child. What does this mean? Killing 1 lakh cows is equivalent to harming one girl child.

So, this way, women were always kept at a very high position.

Love is a happening
Dear Gurudev, love, respect and attachment, how are these three connected. How we can we keep these in balance in relationships?
I think you have too much free time. You should get busy.

Do not sit and worry. Love, respect, all these feelings and emotions remain in you. When your heart and mind are clear, then the right emotions will come at the right time.

Love, respect – all these happen. You cannot make it happen. You cannot make respect come into you. If you make an effort to feel love or respect, it will be a failure. So, all that you can do is free yourself from stress and have wisdom in the mind.

Wisdom is seeing the world from a bigger perspective.

See what is temporary and what is permanent. All the opinions of people are temporary. They come and they go. This you must remember. Do not crave for respect. Some people give respect, some do not, it is fine. It is their choice. But if your life depends on respect from others then you are a weak person. You will feel weakened more and more, and when you are weak, you will be miserable.

You should know that you do not need anybody to respect you. ‘My respect is with me, I do not need anyone to respect me’, that is it.

So when you go back from here, that does not mean you behave disrespectfully. You give respect, but do not expect respect in return.

Sometimes people will not have even a little respect. That is how they are, never mind. If others do not give you respect, never mind. It shows their culture, their evolution.

If you are highly evolved, you will always respect everybody. Whether they are sane or insane, you will respect them. Then you will respect even the insane people because it is in your nature. You see them as a part of this Creation. They belong to the Creation, to Divinity. So when you respect everybody that shows how much wiser you are. Expecting respect shows our weakness and giving respect to people irrespective of who they are or what their standards are shows our wisdom.

Love is a basic substratum of this Creation. It can never disappear. It is always there. Again, give love and it will come back to you a million times more.

    — Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

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