“Woman” & “War” are synonymous! Both start with “W” or two “V” joints! This is self explanatory.
History is replete with stories of “Women at War” & “War due to Women”. Now these are two perspectives of the same issue. Let us examine “War due to Women” first.
“And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept, and he took one of this ribs … and the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a Woman … and Adam said … she shall be called woman because she was taken out of man”
Since time immemorial, women have donned the un-rendered crown of cause to wars & battles between families, communities, kingdoms & nations. Whether they have done it deliberately is a debatable issue but certainly they have been the root cause; or so have been projected throughout history pages.
She was borne out of man’s “ribs”; she became cause of history’s famous “rifts”!!
But here, I take up the perspective, which has been closer to my heart – Women at War.
“TUM KO DHOONDHA PEEDA MEIN TUM ME DHOODHOONGI PEEDA – MAHADEVI VERMA”
"तुमको ढूँढा पीड़ा में तुममे ढूंढूंगी पीड़ा - महादेवी वर्मा"
(I HAVE FOUND YOU IN PAIN; I WILL FIND [my] PAIN IN YOU)
Woman fights that “impossible pain” to bring a new life in our world. Then she rears the child to become a story in its own. “It is Girls Life” to deal with family in which she is born, to deal with the community (read ‘ordeal’) in which she grows up, to deal with husband(s) and his liking –disliking, and then to deal with her children who by default think their creator is an oldie.
Gender bias in all forms is the root cause of “Women at War”.
Foetus killing, educational partiality, puberty –misleading, keep-away-from-boys syndrome, leaving HER family and moving away, One – Way honesty towards husband and reproduction – engine approach rather creator approach and the list goes on.
Are we men, who have written the rules of our society and community over the ages to our comfort, have not acted as tyrants?
No one denies that men are physically stronger. Come, one man in this world, show me your courage and say that being physically overpowering, is willing to go through the seamless pain of delivering a baby! No man has that courage. Tell any man to live a “life-of-a-woman” and see, how he vanishes.
Strangely, we love women. We adore them. We make them our mother, sister, aunt and so on. We love them in all these forms as well. So what’s the catch?
Catch is – we love them with our individual definition and then needs. With all these symbolic / biological relationship forms, one common trait is attached – GIVING. We all like GIVING WOMEN and especially FORGIVING WOMEN and not those who ask ‘something’ in return from us, let alone expecting. Walking along the road see through the eyes of any woman; be it a grown up or a teenager, you will be able to see the held-back attitude reflected in their smile, expression and body language. It seems as their happiness is lent from the so called ‘superior sex’.
In more than one ways, it is.
The unwritten-but-yet omnipresent society rules were written by the subdued nature of the female species. That is why the war of women has perpetuated centuries or from the day we know history.
Now over the years, definitions are changing in bits and pieces in every major communities but objectives remain the same; keep women battling for their fundamental rights as humans. So the war continues. Women also have participated in wars physically all around the world. From Joan of Arc to Rani Lakshmibai, many women have sacrificed their lives for the welfare of their countries. When we look around we find women excelling in the fields of – science, technology, sports, politics, corporations, writers, arts, movies, medicine.
All the fields are now being conquered by women but why still they fight for their basic rights around the world. Rapes, molestation, lewd remarks and expressions at their workplace, down grading at home front, have all these stopped even in these progressive times? Divorce, separation, remarriage, single hood and widows in all these forms women are the big losers, biggest being their children.
So what do we do to the situation of women so that they share the same stage with men in all walks of life? In my opinion men have to do only one thing for this. BE SUPPORTIVE.
Be a supportive father, brother, or husband and that is all women need today to fight their perennial war. Also, I strongly believe that all the super achiever women in a country or countries should assimilate their achievements and propagate it for the common betterment of women around the globe. Take the case in India, the women’s reservation bill is pending for years and all parties make promises to bring on table and pass it but only during press briefings or election rallies. There has been no consistent and standard national level foundation wherein women can walk in and share their experiences and are encouraged to contribute in the movement.
Someone has rightly said “reasons for the situation of women are women themselves”. And this is quite true if you see through the equations of family especially. They succumb to the emotional factor sheepishly used by their male contemporaries and thus succeed the Man!
I think women and war cannot be distinguished from each other. We do not want women that way. We have loved women in pain. Great painters like to paint ‘women with woes’. Poets have loved to bring out the sadness of women as they find many words to define their grim situation. Leaders like to talk about their education, health and safety in public to gain votes and most NGOs work only in their small areas and have such inflated egos that each one of them thinks themselves as the champion of their cause. So who is the ultimate loser – The Woman.
These organizations, leaders, achievers and super achievers; none have made any collaborative approach for their welfare so nothing significant will ever happen and the war will go on.
I don’t say that there is no hope. I am saying that people do not want it to happen. Mother nature has given enough bearing poser to women to fight their struggle all through their life and women have proved it time and again. Woman’s life is War itself. Nature has sent them with inherent constraints for this. Why we men have burdened their life with extra and cruel (read mean) constraints which leads to a war of a lifetime for them?
Let us understand this and give them that conducive environment where they give birth to not only a biological entity but also a culturally progressive, peace loving, and lovely family which breed community worth living and our world well managed.
(written during year 2000)