Fairness is the norm of human behavioural pattern and social ethos. Down the millennia, in our country women are respected, held in high esteem and even adored. The divine is conceived as a mother and as a goddess too. With dignity this sublime statement is made:
Yatra naaryastu poojyante
Ramante tatra devathaa
Roughly rendered into English it is this:
Where women are held in respect/revered
There move the celestials/deities
Our scriptures, which are monumental literary artefacts, placed women on the highest pedestal making them the highest in human life. The ever living intellectual poet of wisdom went on extolling the woman in the various domains of living in the social fabric:
kula dharma patni
A woman is first a daughter, a sister, a mother and a grandmother. In every stage she behaved with sensibility, and obedience to traditional norm. In work a servant maid, in performance of work and duty a minister, in appearance the goddess Lakshmi, in forbearance and mercy the very Mother Earth, in feeding the mother, in bed Rambha, the celestial bed mate, one in great dharma and the devout wife according to dharma, the law of living. This is femininity in the highest level. These have been our ideals. Women were happy, contented being responsibly dutiful.
Change is the law of life and existence and times have changed. Educated, enslaved and downtrodden women began to assert themselves almost fighting vociferously for their rights, equality and decent living. Necessity and subjugation demanded sloganeering and organized movements, first in the West and later almost everywhere.
Right minded men joined encouraged and supported the movements. Feminism rose to heights of vigorous activity.
Still women’s plight is sad. Cruelty, beastliness and lawlessness have come up with no effective, fruitful reigns. Sensationalism has marred decency in reportage in journalism. Nirbhaya condition has become almost the order of the nights as well as days ad nauseam.
But some women are still as forgiving as Mother Earth. Femininity – womanliness is surviving still in women’s writing. Pain, suffering, neglect, cruelty and thoughtlessness are making men beasts. Even then their feelings as women are not becoming belligerent because of basic femininity. The feelings, sentiments and behavioural patterns are dignified and tolerant. Womanliness is the basic quality of the fair sex. The mien of women is dignity, decorum, forbearance and gentility. This does not mean that femininity does not raise complaint or hatred. Women could be the hardest fighters too for their human rights as men have displaying wisdom too.
The ‘factuals’ like Nirbhaya are ubiquitous and do not need enumeration. Education, economic equality, law abiding citizenry and well-meaning and enlightened governance encourage femininity. May femininity thrive and lead the families of nations forge ahead towards joy and contentment.