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Sthree Dharma - Sunder - 01-06-2005

<!--QuoteBegin-rajesh_g+Jan 6 2005, 06:38 AM-->QUOTE(rajesh_g @ Jan 6 2005, 06:38 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Thanks Sunder guroo. Let me think about this..

In the meantime I think the title of this thread is loaded to begin with. I am going to make it more generic. Let me know if you guys still think its inappropriate. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Rajesh ji, Though the topic began with an intention of debating whether freedom was necessary for women, It would be better to line out the Dharmic Values for women, and also analyse which ones are still valid in this day and age.

There are some values that do not change with time, and there are others that do change with time. Sthree Dharma or Dharmic values for women would be appropriate. <!--emo&Smile--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Mudy garu may be able to suggest a better title if need be.

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 01-06-2005

I am able to see lot of replies made. I am trying to answer them collectively :

Mudy Quoted:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Raja, What you will do?
One day, if your girl child, probably 15 years, comes back to you saying that she is pregnant, how will you feel ?
If this was not her mistake, I will punish the person involved as mentioned by Sunder. If it was her mistake, then I have failed in my responsibilities as a father. Either I have not educated her appropriately (and/or) I have provided her an environment which provokes her to commit such errors (and/or) I have given that “extra freedom” for her etc.

<i><b>Pls see my point of argument here, my responsibility levels as a father resulting in controls imposed on my girl child for her well being.</b></i>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->What is your reaction when you see someone in see through dress or in covered dress?
What you think when you see woman covered with Burka?
What is your reaction when you see woman in work place or your wife decides to go to different city for education?
Mudy, If you ask me, I will feel pity for a girl who has not covered her body as she is not educated with what is called “human sense” . I will term her as ‘Prostitute” for exposing the parts of the body to others. I am sorry to say this blandly.

I do not have any issue in women at my workplace or if my wife goes to a different city for education as long as the underlying fundamentals are not violated - Typical examples for this underlying fundamentals as I see is, giving importance to family, Avoiding illegal sexual relationships etc. You may term this as 'responsibility', but my opinion is that there should be some rules to govern this responsibility and it should not be loose ended. ( pls understand , it is applicable to both men and women . However, I am now discussing only on women as it is the subject )

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Raja Quoted:
1.Proper communication -- Try to mutually communicate the issues and have a good understanding

2. Mutual understanding --- Try to close this with the mutual understanding between us

3. Give and take policy --- If it cannot be closed by mutual understanding, See whether one of us can sacrifice their viewpoint and allow the interest of the other without any damage to the underlying fundamentals .

4. Final Call --- If by all these, we are not able to arrive at any solution, I will take the final call as the HEAD of the family. Here comes what I call "submission".

Viren Quoted :

If first 3 you've listed are firm then there really isn't the need for one to 'submit' to the other, fourth point is redundant. Consider a relationship between two friends where there'll be agreements and disagreements where the two will find a way out no matter how contentious the issue is. Submissions of one or not might be good for the bloated egos onlee.

Viren, Pls tell us frankly, have you not faced a situation where there is no consensus arrived after going through the first three points ? If so, you are really lucky !!

Pls tell us , IN REALITY, how many couples are able to solve all the issues within the first three points at all times ? Let us not talk theory ! What you suggest if it is not solved within the 3 points ? You suggest a “DIVORCE” ?? (or) you suggest individual to take their own call without considering the interest of the family (or) what else. Let us talk about the exceptions also here. Let us make it black and white ! There is no question of ego here.

Ashok, let me clarify, Neither I mean “murder” nor "islam" when I say “submission”.

Personally, I feel the responses talk too much on the theory rather than looking into the practicality. The point I am debating is on the "controlled freedom" to be excercised by women (ofcourse, the controlled freedom is applicable to men also. Time and again, I am repeating, it is not discussed here because it is a different topic altogether) to have a good culture and a successful family life.

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 01-06-2005

Not exactly goes with thread title but .....<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Sex and sensibility </b>
The Pioneer Edit Desk
The report that, according to a recent survey, one in every five women defines herself as beautiful and is confident enough to describe herself as sexy, deserves more than passing attention. For one thing, why only one and not all five? Is it low self-esteem or modesty or a certain squeamishness about being known as 'sexy' that held them back from claiming the label? It is clearly the last question that needs the most careful examination. While self-esteem and modesty are personal attributes, one's attitude towards being considered sexy reflects the prevailing values.

In Victorian England, a woman who flaunted her sexual attraction, caused fits to keepers of collective morality who branded her as close to being scarlet if not actually so. Modesty was what Mrs Grundy and her male equivalents approved. In the same country after the sexual revolution of the 1960s, it was hep and with it to be sexy. And not only in the land of the Brits. Throughout the Western world, people began shedding inhibitions, taboos and apparel, celebrating the freedom of the flesh, and toasting eros. Sexy became an epithet for everything that was exciting and desirable-a car, a motorbike, a jacket, a suit.

One wonders, therefore, whether the survey yielded the results it did because the sample chosen was not representative enough. Perhaps it was wrong to have entrusted the London School of Economics and Harvard Business School with the task of conducting it. Dons, though often permissive in their private lives-as Oxonians who know of the Parson's Pleasure by the Isis would concur- invariably tend to ascribe in public greater value to cerebral rather than physical attributes. This in turn may have influenced their respondents, particularly since the feminist revolution's ambivalent attitude towards heterosexual relationships and male domination, tends to make the second sex defensive about anything that involves the yardstick of male approval.

The responses appear all the more puzzling because there is no fixed criteria for determining what constitute sex appeal, which is what anything sexy must have. Twiggy and Marilyn Monroe looked very different from each other. Yet they sent male pulse rates soaring, just as Marlene Dietrich, Ava Gardner, Sophia Loren, Gina Lollobrigida, Brigitte Bardot, Madhubala and Nargis, all of whom looked very different, from one another, did in their heyday, and as Salma Hayek, Keira Knightley, Aishwarya Rai, and Sushmita Sen do now.

The fact is that no one can put a finger on what is it exactly that makes a woman-or a man,for that matter-sexy. There are many kinds of sex appeal that many kinds of look trigger for diverse people. Physical attributes matter only up to a point and no more: Otherwise every bimbo or a hulk would have been toasted as a sex symbol. It is a matter of style, of the sense of mystery that one carries. Nor is one sexy all the time. Sometimes, it is a glance, a smile, the light that falls on one, or just an enchanting smell. Asked TS Eliot, "Is it perfume on your dress/ That makes me so digress?"<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 01-06-2005


<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Mudy, If you ask me, I will feel pity for a girl who has not covered her body as she is not educated with what is called “human sense” . I will term her as ‘Prostitute” for exposing the parts of the body to others. I am sorry to say this blandly.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Might resonate well in some Talibanic type society but communities in general can't regulate as to what's decent or not. We have all personal opinions whether right or for wrong and we are entitled to it as long as it's not forced on others.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Personally, I feel the responses talk too much on the theory rather than looking into the practicality<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Without specific details of the dispute in question all we can do is talk theory. If the issue is a bit too specific, a marriage counsellor and not this forum might be the right place to hash this out.

I really don't see a point on continuing the discussion of one human being 'submissive' to another.

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 01-06-2005


Try to avoid posts with <!--emo&:angry:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/mad.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='mad.gif' /><!--endemo--> icon. It means you are angry. You have used this in the last 2 posts without any particular reason. Atleast its not obvious to me. If anything it tells others that you are a very short-tempered person and god forbid if you were living in a society that had "limited freedom" women around you will be in deep trouble. <!--emo&:o--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ohmy.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ohmy.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Coming to the topic at hand the reason we are all confused is once again the framework that the question has been posed in. There are 2 extremes for this situation.

1. Rules that take care of "freedom of women". Per Raja, they should not be open-ended either. In other words, they must be strict and codified.
2. Everything goes. Panties showing, boobs popping out, whatever.

It is obvious that neither one of them is acceptable. Thankfully India doesnt have any of the problems 1 or 2. Is the Indian society changing ? Yes. Is it for good ? I am not too sure. I found kareina kapoor (whatever her name is these days) wearing a top made out of union jack even more troubling then her wearing a 2 piece bikini. And this doesnt just affect women. This affects everybody. We are blindly aping the western society without considering the pros and cons of that society. I have not seen TV programs or serious literature that looks at the western societies with a critical eye. The statistics that Raja mentions is the kind that needs to be made public. Once fully informed societies arrive at a consensus that women moving around topless is cool I for one have no problem with it. Whether that is the case today I am not too sure.

That is the reason why papers and articles like

Dialog on Whiteness Studies

is important. Rajiv Malhotra is a big proponent of Purva-Paksha of other religions and societies. I agree with him.

Sthree Dharma - Sunder - 01-06-2005

Here is a constructive twist to the topic at hand. I see no resolution in a debate whether limitations should be imposed, or defining freedom in a way that pleases everybody. All talk is theory, the only practical way is to practise what is preached.

Instead of debating on the amount of freedom or restrictions, it would be better to discuss a guideline for a healthy society. What would be the guidelines (DO's and DON’Ts) for men and women in an Indian cultural framework (possibly applicable to kids of NRI's too.)

Raja, I would like you to list the do's and donts for MEN and WOMEN in an indian society. This would be helpful for further discussion.

Here are a few points I can think of for shaping values.

<b>Children below 10 years.</b>

Children always learn by example. Their personalities are shaped by imitating their rolemodels.
(*) Expose children to good/healthy environment.
(*) Cultivate interest in various area (like music, art, sports, self-defense, and most importantly puranas and ithihasas.)
(*) Shape their imaginative minds with stories of heroism and valour, and also of kindness and compassion.
(*) Teach them BY EXAMPLE, the virtues of Truth and Tolerance, and also of assertiveness and strengh.
(*) Teach children the story of Sati, Sita, Savitri, and Anasuya.

The character of a child for a lifetime, be it 'responsibilities' or 'submissiveness' is already shaped in these 10 years time. In these 10 years time, all their questions should be answered honestly and also foster a bond of a father/son, father/daughter, mother/son or mother/daughter. Involve all grandparents and uncles/aunts even if you are far away from home.

<b>Children between 10 and 15 years.</b>

This is a stage they will try and exercise a new found freedom. Though it feels like they are 'getting away' from you, remember your teen years. You were not getting away from parents, but were venturing into the world on your own. Trying to take charge of situations.. As a parent, here is when you need to 'delegate' and 'guide' instead of 'dictate'. The one rule we had at home while growing up was <b>do anything you like, but keep us informed of it.</b> and sure enough, we had the freedom to do ANYTHING, but we always told our parents of it..

From my little world, the best person to grant or take away ones freedom is not the husband, but the parents. They shape your personality, and thus you as a parent will have to make a conscious decision whether your child will be an aggressive bully (freedom without responsibility) or a meek coward (lack of freedom anywhere.)

At this point, man or woman does not matter. I know this is a twist to the topic. Raja, if you can add your guidelines to a sane society it would be nice to hear.

Sthree Dharma - Sunder - 01-07-2005

Soundarya Lahari.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->In Soundaryalahari, as well as in many similar works, <b>there is mention about attaining  a most attractive form, captivating women into submission by means of mantra,</b> and such matters. These should not be taken literally. What does it mean to bring another into submission to you? It only means that you are already submitting yourself to such practices. To appropriate a lot of property simply means to allow oneself to be appropriated by that thought of proprietorship. <b>To want to bring somebody else into submission  implies that you are already  submissive to such thoughts.</b> Thereafter there is no question of bhakti towards ambaal or of surrendering to Her. Our Acharya would never have meant to make us slaves to such mean desires.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 01-13-2005

Perhaps more knowledgeable folks would like to comment on this..

Shringaara, a Worthy Aim of Hindu Life - I

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 01-17-2005

The Power of Mother Sita in Modern India

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 02-09-2005

Worship of the Goddess in Hinduism

Sthree Dharma - Sunder - 02-10-2005

<!--QuoteBegin-Viren+Feb 9 2005, 08:30 AM-->QUOTE(Viren @ Feb 9 2005, 08:30 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Worship of the Goddess in Hinduism <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The ancient Tamil classic, Cilappadikaram, eulogizes its benighted heroine, Kannaki, who in her rage at a king's injustice, tore off her left breast and burned the city of Madurai to the ground before rising to the sky as a goddess.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

I always thought it was her anklet that she threw, and the king died the same instant saying "I am not a king, I am a thief." As I have not read the Silappadhigaram, I cannot assert authoritatively. Can someone enlighten me if it was an anklet or a left-breast.

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 02-10-2005


Remember that it was the anklet which as the whole 'cause of her husband's misfortune. Someone more knowledgable could comment on this.

Sthree Dharma - Sunder - 02-10-2005

<!--QuoteBegin-Viren+Feb 10 2005, 03:21 AM-->QUOTE(Viren @ Feb 10 2005, 03:21 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Sunder,

Remember that it was the anklet which as the whole 'cause of her husband's misfortune. Someone more knowledgable could comment on this. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Viren, I know it's the anklet, and hence the name of the book "Silappadhigaram". But I am surprised that infinityfoundation has an article that mentions otherwise.. Hence the question to clarify. <!--emo&Smile--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 02-10-2005

I have read the Silapadhigaram in school (especially) the chapter in which Kannagi throws her anklet (silambu).

Kovalan comes to Madurai to sell Kannagi's silambu. At the same time, the Pandyan's queen loses her silambu (which looks identical to the one that Kovalan has) and a search is on for it. When Kovalan comes to the King with the silambu, the king thinks that Kovalan had stolen it and sentences him to death. When Kannagi hears about her husband's demise, comes to the king and asks him what his queen's silambu is filled with. He says its pearls. Kannagi then asks the king to bring the one siezed from kovalan and forcibly throws it to the ground. It breaks and some navarathanams(or something different) spills out. The king commits suicide for being wrong and Kannagi burns the whole city of Madurai to the ground using her power of chastity. She is then pacified when she reaches chera nadu (kerala).

Sthree Dharma - Sunder - 02-13-2005

<!--QuoteBegin-Viren+Feb 10 2005, 03:21 AM-->QUOTE(Viren @ Feb 10 2005, 03:21 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Sunder,

Remember that it was the anklet which as the whole 'cause of her husband's misfortune. Someone more knowledgable could comment on this. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
The Life of Kannaki: Grief and Fury

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->When Kannaki heard the sad news that her husband had been executed on the orders of the king, in the most gruesome manner although her husband was innocent of the charge, she rushed to the king's palace and appeared before him.

<b>Furious, she cursed the king by tearing her left breast and dashed it on the ground. </b> Uttering words over her perdition, she invoked the gods to punish the king for this cruel act that he had committed without proper investigation.

The story says that after the curse, the palace rose in flames consuming everything by the roaring tongues of fire, including the king himself. The heart-broken Kannaki had, thereafter, left Puhur for the Chera kingdom where she had died and become a goddess.

I wonder what is the source of this repeated reference to the left breast, when most of us remember it as the Anklet.

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 02-13-2005

I don't get it, how can one tear of a left breast...its obviously wrong.

Its the silambu(the other pair) which she dashes

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 02-14-2005

naariistanabhara naabhiidesham
drishhtvaa maagaamohaavesham

Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam

“bhruvau bhugne kinchid-bhuvana-bhaya-bhanga-vyasanini

tvadiye netrabhyam madhukara rucibhyam dhrtagunam

dhanur-manye savyetarakara-grhitam ratipateh

prakosthe mustau ca sthagayati nigudhantaram ume.”

Saundarya Lahari verse 47

“O Uma! In Thy slightly knit eyebrows, intent on dispelling the world’s fears, I imagine the bow of Rati’s lord (Manmatha), strung with the string of Thy shining bee-like pair of eyes, held in his left hand, with the middle parts of both concealed by the forearm and the clenched fist covering them.”

One must understand that for any study be it art, literature or spiritual study the meaning of the universe around depends upon our state of mind.

If one's thinking plane is physical then above Bhaja govindam verse applies,
on the other hand one is inclined to see divinity in everything then read the second verse from Saundarya Lahari and appreciate the greatness of Amma (Parvati).

My son (teen ager) after visiting a few Museums in Paris remarked, " why are people going gaga over the nudes of fat ladies on Canvas "

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 03-17-2005

Via email-
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>w o m e n    i n    h i n d u i s m </b>

In ancient India, women occupied a very important position, in fact a superior position to, men. It is a culture whose only words for strength and power are feminine -"Shakti'' means "power'' and "strength.'' All male power comes from the feminine. Literary evidence suggests that kings and towns were destroyed because a single woman was wronged by the state. For example, Valmiki's Ramayana teaches us that Ravana and his entire clan was wiped out because he abducted Sita. Veda Vyasa's Mahabharatha teaches us that all the Kauravas were killed because they humiliated Draupadi in public. Elango Adigal's Sillapathigaram teaches us Madurai, the capital of the Pandyas was burnt because Pandyan Nedunchezhiyan mistakenly killed her husband on theft charges.

In Vedic times women and men were equal as far as education and religion was concerned. Women participated in the public sacrifices alongside men. One text mentions a female rishi Visvara. Some Vedic hymns, are attributed to women such as Apala, the daughter of Atri, Ghosa, the daughter of Kaksivant or Indrani, the wife of Indra. Apparently in early Vedic times women also received the sacred thread and could study the Vedas. The Haritasmrti mentions a class of women called brahmavadinis who remained unmarried and spent their lives in study and ritual. Panini's distinction between arcarya (a lady teacher) and acaryani (a teacher's wife), and upadhyaya (a woman preceptor) and upadhyayani ( a preceptor's wife) indicates that women at that time could not only be students but also teachers of sacred lore. He mentions the names of several noteworthy women scholars of the past such as Kathi, Kalapi, and Bahvici. The Upanishads refer to several women philosophers, who disputed with their male colleagues such as Vacaknavi, who challenged Yajnavalkya. The Rig Veda also refers to women engaged in warfare. One queen Bispala is mentioned, and even as late a witness as Megasthenes (fifth century B.C. E.) mentions heavily armed women guards protecting Chandragupta's palace. ----Courtesy A TRIBUTE TO HINDUISM.

On respect for women

Abuse of women is also a very bad thing. Women should not be abused. A husband and wife should be fond of each other and respect each other's sentiments. They should try to adjust to each other. Whenever required, both should try to sacrifice their egos. The woman is physically weaker than the man. When a person is physically weaker, that person should be helped and protected not abused. A man should never abuse his physical power over a woman-- ---Sri Sri Sri Shivabalayogi, Maharaj Charitable Trust, Dehradun Ashram, 180-C-Rajpur Road, Rajpur, Dehradun, 248009 India

Excerpts from   Aphorisms for a Truly Spiritual Life, From Living with Siva, By Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami

Section Three---The Family Path--Instructions for Men /Instructions for Husbands

Sûtra 81: Modesty with women

Devout Hindu men speak to and associate mostly with men. Conversation with women, especially the wives of other men, is not prolonged. To avoid intimacy, one's gaze is directed at the hairline, not into the eyes. Aum.

Sûtra 82: Respect for women

All Siva's men devotees go out of their way to express respect, bordering on reverence, for women. They never demean them in speech, watch vulgar or erotic shows, or associate with lustful or promiscuous women. Aum.

Sûtra 83: Kindliness toward women

Siva's men devotees never argue with women, antagonize, disrespect, tease or abuse them in any way. They are always kindly, protective, helpful and understanding, honoring the mother spirit within women. Aum.

Sûtra 84: Wearing traditional clothing

Siva's men devotees dress, whenever appropriate, in impeccable traditional Hindu attire, always at home, in the temple and at religious/cultural events. Their outer elegance is equaled only by their inner dignity. Aum.

Sûtra 85: The home as refuge

Siva's men devotees, on arriving home from work, immediately bathe and enter their shrine for the blessings of Gods and guru to dispel worldly forces and regain the state of Siva consciousness. Aum Nama Sivâya

Sûtra 86: Caring for one's wife

Each of Siva's married men devotees loves and cares for his wife, despite any shortcomings. He is forbidden to strike or speak harshly to her or ignore her needs. If he does, he must seek family and professional help. Aum.

Sûtra 87: Restraint with other women

Siva's married men, in the workplace and in the world, hold a courteous aloofness toward all women, whether young, older, single, married, divorced or widowed. They reserve their affections for wife and family. Aum.

Sûtra 88: Communicating daily

When away from home, each of Siva's married men devotees contacts his wife every day to express his love and inquire about her day. He avoids rowdy company and never visits another woman's home alone. Aum.

Sûtra 89: Fulfilling all her needs and wants

Siva's devotees who are husbands practice the mystical law of caring for and giving the wife all she needs and all she wants, thus releasing her Sakti energy from within, making him contented, successful and magnetic. Aum.

Sûtra 90: Family togetherness

Each of Siva's devotees who is a husband spends time with his wife and children daily. Monday is a family evening at home. One night monthly is devoted to the wife alone in an activity of her choice. Aum Nama Sivâya.

The Unfailing Power Of Female Fidelity--(MADHU KISHWAR, New Delhi, editor of Manushi, India's leading magazine on human issues, especially women right's, is an erudite activist in the effort to raise up the qualify of life in India. )

I grew up thinking that Sita, heroine of the Ramayana, was a slavish wife without a mind of her own who deserved the shabby treatment of her husband, Lord Ram. It took me a long time to understand that it is not Indian women's masochism which makes Sita appear an appealing role model. It is her supreme loyalty, combined with her dignified refusal to go through the humiliation of a second fire ordeal. She makes Ram appear so uncouth and unreasonable that this one injustice has not been forgiven all these centuries.

I witnessed the power of Sita's story to move men's hearts in Maharashtra. I was working on the Lakshmi Mukti program to persuade peasants of the organization, Shetkari Sangathana, to empower women by voluntarily transferring a portion of the family land in the name of the wife. During our campaign, Sangathana leader Sharad Joshi pointed out to men how their wives toil for them selflessly, how crucial their wives' labor and care is for the well-being of the family. He would ask his audience: "But how do we men treat our Lakshmi's? [Sita is an incarnation of Lakshmi]. Often no better than Ram treated Sita! When Ram was banished for 14 years Sita could have stayed back, but she insisted, 'Wherever goes Ram, there goes Sita. My place is by your side.' She suffered numerous privations for him joyfully. Though Ram's enemy, Ravan, respected her chastity when she was captured by him, and did not violate Sita against her wishes, her own husband subjected her to the cruel humiliation of agnipariksha to prove her chastity. Even fire could not touch her. But on their return to his kingdom, at the mere hint of a slanderous remark by a laundryman, Ram asks Lakshman to take away Sita and leave her in a forest without explanation. Maharani (Great Queen) Sita became a beggar overnight because her husband turned against her. It did not occur to him to tell his subjects, 'If Sita is not good enough to be your queen, then my place is by her side. I cannot stay here either.' He left her destitute even while she was pregnant with his children."

Siva alone of all the Gods is considered the most desirable type of husband. Unmarried women fast on Mondays praying to Siva that He bless them with Parvati's good fortune. Why? Because Siva is single minded in his devotion to Parvati. He has no eye for any other woman. When she immolates herself as Sati to protest her father's insult of her husband, Siva is ready to burn down the whole world and rests only after he has brought her back to life. She carries tremendous influence in his activities, a companion and advisor rather than a servile wife. They are our mythology's most celebrated and happy couple, representing perfect joy in togetherness, including in their sexual union.


Sthree Dharma - Bharatvarsh - 04-21-2005

Hindu women should be given equal rights nothing more or nothing less. As someone said we imbibed a lot of Mullah culture, for example Pardah has strong presence in North India (which felt large scale Muslim impact) while it is virtually non existant in the South which was able to preserve a lot of our traditions because Muslims didn't rule in South India as long as in the North. And what the hell is this about women becoming immoral and wearing western clothes, 90% of Hindu men wear western clothes so don't blame women, infact it is thanks to Hindu women that the sari still exists, if they decided to wear western clothes like men then think about what would have happened to the sari. I have seen how women are made the scapegoats by some Hindu men, it's disgusting. Both should take equal responsibility, and we are a culture which gives supreme power to women in the form of Goddesses like Durga and Kali and the Vedas have contributions from women, so don't know where ppl get the idea that women are supposed to be subservient to men. Even our country is represented by Bharat Mata a women, Vande Mataram the most patriotic song praises our motherland and compares it to Durga Ma. It was a woman named Keladi Chennamma that gave shelter to Shivaji's son when all the other Hindu kings refused because of cowardice and it was a women named Jhansi Laxmi Bhai who is one of the most heroic names in our freedom struggle. Both should have equal rights, end of the matter.

Sthree Dharma - Guest - 09-25-2005

<b>State of women in ancient times</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Study of four Vedas will reveal that there is no difference from man or woman, boy or girl. It is stated in the Rigveda MANTRA 8/1/6 that O! God, you are more than to my father and brothers but you are equal to my mother. Again it is said, "mata nirmatri bhawati" i.e., mother makes the future of the children bright. Rigveda mantra 8/34/19 says,<b> "ISTRI BRAHAMA BBHUVITHAH" i.e., the woman is herself Brahma</b>. The God has given this Supreme title to a woman. There are so many Ved mantras where the girl and woman have been praised. But after Mahabhart war the study of Vedas started going to an end and arrogant thus made their own rule as also said by Tulsi in his Ramayana Uttra Kand couplet 97(a) and verse 1 to 4 under the said couplet. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->