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ISKCON Desire Tree - Forum • View topic - Women Subordinate to Men

Women Subordinate to Men

Daily Question and Answer.

Women Subordinate to Men

Postby backtohome » Mon Jun 22, 2009 11:42 am

Women Subordinate to Men

Please accept my humble obeisances,
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I have read that according to Vedic culture the female should be subordinate to men. My friends do not agree. They find this difficult to understand. They feel that respect should be from both partners in a relationship, which is very true. I understand from some of our literature that women are to be subordinate to the male. How can I help these friends understand this concept?

Your student


Answer: Men and Women Subordinate to Each Other

In the Vedic culture the men adopt a very responsible position of giving first class service to the women by always seeing that they are properly honored and that they are never abused. When the women experience how they are being so lovingly served by the men they happily, naturally, and eagerly reciprocate with the men by serving them in return.

So the men subordinate themselves to the women just as a son lovingly serves and protects his mother, and the women subordinate themselves to the men just as a mother lovingly takes care of her son.

In short, the Vedic culture is based on the principle of subordination. Everyone lovingly subordinates themselves to Krishna, to guru, to Krishna's devotees, and even to the non-devotees by giving them Krishna.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari
"Thought for the Day" is the daily inspirational message of the Ultimate Self Realization Course(TM) broadcast daily to thousands of subscribers throughout the world. You can subscribe by visiting http://www.backtohome.com/
backtohome
 
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Re: Women Subordinate to Men

Postby vrk » Wed Jun 24, 2009 9:39 am

Sankarshan Prabhu has as always given a wonderful reply. I would like to add a few points here.

You can make your friends understand something only if you have understood it. Convictions from realizations give the ability to convince. The question you have asked and its resolution are pivotal to the mission of the Sampradaya in our modern world.

Subordination of women is not the Inferiority of women — a confusion yet to be categorically resolved. Men and women have definite roles to play in the mission and service of the Lord. What a woman can do, a man cannot and viceversa. They must complement one another. This is marriage — a symbiosis, not parasitism. Why is the earth geo-spherical and not cubical? Why is the grass green and not red? Why is the water liquid and not solid? It is the way it is created. Why are women subordinate? That is creation. In reality, there is only one male — Krishna, and all creation, material and spiritual, is female. This is because all are subordinate to Him.

Human body is meant only to realize God, especially a man's. The soul that has much material desires is given a woman's body, as much as a person that likes tasting blood gets a bug's. Women are naturally prone to be attached to their body and the relationships that come along with it. They are also much interested in dressing up well and decorating themselves with ornaments. Austerities are not their lot. Neither do they have the strength to carry out much tapasya, due to being physically weaker than men and encumbered with monthly cycles, etc. They put emotions before intelligence and break down under emotional pressure, due to being by past life conditioning, attached to many desires. Renunciation or sannyas is therefore not recommended for them. Women are governed by passion and ignorance. This is why women are not given the brahminical representation. Women also have strong tendencies to be very cruel — even with their own children. Abortion is a stark portrayal of this reality. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura said that even if a woman takes to Krishna Consciousness, it is difficult for her to attain to a very high platform. Scriptures also never recommend independence for women. This is because Purusha can be without Prakriti but Prakriti cannot exist without Purusha. Great devotees like Mirabai are exceptionally rare.

The rebelliousness of modern day girls and women to timeless wisdom is sufficient to corroborate this truth. They rebel due to false ego. A woman's rebellion against the natural process, leads only to more misery. They don't like subordination; all the more reason for them to be controlled. Men who don't like humbling themselves also become women and are then forced to submit. Thus for these and many more reasons, women must be subordinated, but mind you, never inferiorated. They must marry first class qualified devotees and live happily. If the husband is not first class, the woman is not inspired to be first class since she looks up to him at all times. If he is excellent, she will give her everything to him. Therefore, a woman attains liberation through her husband, who is assumed to be first class and upholding the marital vows of liberating his dependents. Because she cannot understand scriptures by herself, she needs someone to guide her accordingly. Thus the husband becomes her Guru and must remain so. He is a living example for her daily.

Though we say all this, the scriptures also extol the great female devotees; and there are many many of them. Thus, to think that scriptures beat a woman down, is wrong. Anyhow, it is best to accept one's spiritual and material position and work from there. Whether man or woman is of no concern; what matters is serving the Lord. After all this is the end of our sojourn. Let us leave gloriously, unimpeded by our bodies and its acceptance or rejection by earthly persons. Krishna has accepted me, why do I care more for my ugly mask?

There is much to be said with regard to this topic and it yet remains subject to controversy. After all, this is the age of quarrel. Hope this answers your questions and convinces your friends.

Hari Hari !!!
vrk
 
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