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The texts that govern out present-day lives are mired in double-standards between the sexes.
The difference between being a complete man and being a complete woman.
Yes, you read it right. Biologically, both are human beings living in the same society but their lives were and are never the same. Dress code, morals, culture everything differs for a man and woman from the same community. Why community? For a man and woman who live in the same house.
We are strongly conditioned to hear again and again how a good man or complete man should be and how a good woman or complete woman should be.
A good woman should be a good daughter first, obey her parents, never raising her head or voice, always waiting to get married. There is no other goal told for a woman anywhere. Search all the mythological and religious texts. This is what you get. A woman is born to get married and that too not the man of her choice.
Next comes being a good wife. Now, all of a sudden her world changed. From day one, she should adopt to the new world, without complaints, and serve everyone from the in-law’s family. Just be submissive. Don’t raise your voice. Don’t raise your head. Don’t question anyone. Even God comes next to your husband who is an ordinary human being. Pati hi parameshwar hai, however bad he is. If she is a good wife and good daughter in law then she is a good woman.
And here comes the contradiction. For a man to be called good or complete his role is very limited. If he is a good son and achieves something in his chosen profession he is complete man. He has many choices. He can choose his profession. He can choose his wife or wives any number of them. Nowhere in the mythological or religious texts, duties of a good husband are defined.
A man can and should take care of his parents to become a good man. But if the same thing a woman does, if she supports her family or takes care of her parents or siblings she is portrayed as a selfish and disobedient woman. In fact, we can get n number of good men who were loyal sons. But we don’t have a single good woman example who was a good daughter .
And next, becoming parents. A woman should become a mother to be called a complete woman. But that is not a compulsion for man. And if the couple are not blessed with children it is always the fault of woman and the man is free to marry any number of times till he becomes father.
Next, being parents. Here also rules are different. We won’t find strong mothers anywhere.Mothers should be submissive and sometimes, even they were slayed by good sons for their fathers. And, interestingly, we never find affectionate fathers anywhere. In fact, the role of husband or father were not defined anywhere it seems. Dasaratha was an exception to some extent. A father should control his children it seems.
And even in many texts wife and children were described as crocodiles who are hindrances to man’s spiritual progress. And a man is free to leave or renounce this material world after getting married and having children.
Wah, with such ideals how can we expect better things for women in the society?
First there should be a change in the thought process and we should stop preaching the submissive women and dictator men stories. Then we can think of a change in the society.
Image source: Unsplash
Home maker at present. Worked as English teacher. My short stories and poems are published
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