Virtuous Sardonicism

Author : Oohini Mukhopadhyay

That living in a country with god fearing, holy, religious people could be so blood- curdling, was never discerned until today.

The ever increasing numbers of female foeticides, molestations, the genocidal rapes, domestic violence and discrimination in each and every sphere of life are certainly of the superlative category to the list of goddesses our country has incorporated in its history of being.
To name a few with their dispositions-

1. Goddess Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of knowledge, music, arts, wisdom and learning certainly doesn’t go with the concept of depriving girls of knowledge, basic education which might give rise to an imagination which is highly vandalizing for the society; for the life of the husband to whom she is married off to at the age of probably 9, 10 or 11 but certainly before she has attained puberty, otherwise the father of the girl gets damned.

Girls desiring to dance or sing were equated to a courtesan or a girl of low morals. So why worship a woman for all the things she is not “supposed” to do?

2. Goddess Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity. Again, contradicting the norms followed generations after generations. The concept of an office belonging to the male of the family and the household chores in the female’s arena. Isn’t she supposed to bring in wealth and prosperity? Why can’t the woman of the family earn and the man just do the household chores?

And if the woman is earning and the man is not then she is termed as “The Man” of the house. Why can’t she be “The Woman” of the house even if she is the sole breadwinner?

3. There is another Goddess who is said to be the goddess of death, said to inhabit cremation grounds and devotees often go to these places to meditate: Goddess Kali. I don’t believe in cremating the body for many simple reasons or for that matter performing rituals as a whole, however even if I consider cremation as an option, then the holy scriptures says, a girl cannot give the fire to the funeral pyre as per Hindus, “Mukhaagni” or perform the death rites. What a sham!

4. The most important one, Devi Durga. During Durga Puja, it is said, that Maa Durga comes back to her father’s house to finish the evil or Mahishasura . After that, she is again sent back to her husband’s house. So basically she can’t be armed with valour, courage and assert her power in the husband’s house. For that she has to come all the way to her father’s house and do the needful.

Through all her forms, Maa Durga, encompasses the essence of salvation and sacrifice. She is the mother of bounty and wealth, the inherent dynamic energy through which this supreme consciousness manifests itself, she represents the power of the Supreme Being that preserves moral order and righteousness in the universe. If she is the embodiment of righteousness and morality, how are the women immoral, if they wear what they wish to; if they are raped; if they are prostitutes? Isn’t it the man that is corrupt, attaching all sorts of meanings to their attire or character?

Talking about Chastity, it is buried in a woman’s vagina. In this country the need of a virgin wife is more than the need to overcome poverty. From the lowest class to the highest one there will be a uniform desire for a “PURE” vagina as the daughter- in- law/sister -in –law/wife/infinite relationships that a woman has to succumb to before being just a woman.

The entire philosophy of attaching a meaning to a woman’s doings, to push her into various relationships, suppressing her own identity as a human being of an equal built, but just with ovaries as a difference, is misogynistic in itself. If you think a woman should be worshipped as a goddess, then you are promoting discrimination by standardizing traits according to your own convenience.

“Beliefs are what divide people, doubts unite them.”

-Peter Ustinov


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