So that means it's my responsibility to keep from getting raped? What about the responsibility of the man not to harm another person? How am I responsible for whether or not another person chooses to commit a crime? What about the responsibility of society to teach boys and young men that that is an unacceptable way of treating others?Silverbackman said:Dressing in modesty for example is created in order to prevent rape,
I gather from this that you don't disapprove of homosexuality and homosexuals, correct? Well then, if my partner and I both "specialize in homemaking," as you put it, who then will "specialize" in providing for us? Or do you suggest that we find some gay male couple and talk them into providing for us while we clean their house?Silverbackman said:Similarly why are homosexuals considered evil in Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism? The truth is homosexuality is not a wrong as long as it does not become so open that is considered equal to a union between a man and a woman. Homosexuals are not evil, and God/Nature doesn't care less if someone is gay, but God does not want homosexuality be equated to a union between a man and a woman because it clearly is not the same thing!
I said:Arthra, the evidence is simple - Baha'i is a religion that has the highest positions of authority reserved only for men. That makes it something of a patriarchal religion.
You can argue about the UHJ fulfilling the will of Baha'u'llah, but if the system set up is patriarchal, then that is what it is.
Any patriarchal religion can draw on a list of venerated list of women contributors - but that does not mean they are egalitarian or offer actual practical equality.
EDIT: Here's a selection of definitions for "patriarchal":
At_the_Wellspring said:Hi Silverbackman. Thanks for your first post, I understand what you are trying to say, but there are still a few points on which I have to disagree.
Firstly, I am definitely not saying there is anything wrong with wanting to be a homemaker and mother - as I said, I myself have a very strong urge to be a mother and to care and nurture my children myself rather than leave them in the hands of a nanny while I work. In some ways I understand what you are saying when the role of strong career woman is praised higher than being 'just' a homemaker these days. I disagree with that.
I agree with having choice. What I don't agree with is when someone doesn't have a choice to make those choices. This could be because of legal restrictions (such as you are saying), or it could be from prejudice, social or family expectation and pressure. This can be very subtle, and so it could be said that it no longer exists. Yet it very much does.
I agree with you in that nature is very much who we are - so many things can all be linked back to our basic hunter/ gatherer instincts. BUT if nature is indicating to us how we should be living, isn't it about now at this point in time that we are beginning to over-populate our earth, so that we are rapidly running out of resources? While much of the 3rd world still has a rapidly increasing population, doesn't it make sense that in other parts of the world the population growth is diminishing, that women now have alternatives to a career as a mother? Biology ensures the continuation of the species - correct me if I'm wrong, but it doesn't seem that we are in danger of dying out. In fact it would do our world some good to reduce our population growth.
I see the beauty in a partnership providing for one another, and I am not wanting to diminish the role that women have provided in home-making, mothering and nurturing their families over the past centuries. But as you say, things have changed, we have become more 'specialised', becoming more efficient etc. So can't we begin to recognise and value the diversity of men and women rather than retaining the narrow view that there are only two, distinct types of human beings - men and women.
While this is mostly obviously true (visually), physically, even science these days, is showing that there is not necessarily such a defining line between us. Women also have testosterone, at varying levels. If one woman has a higher level of testosterone it may be that one 'masculine' quality is more evident in her. For example, she is able to understand 3 dimensional spaces more comprehensively that the 'average' women. So she may recognise this strength and go on to become an aviation engineer. In true equality, she should come across no barriers/ prejudice (whether legal or simply subtle) in acheiving that goal.
I am not rejecting the fact that we can make generalisations about characteristics of men and women. All I am saying is that traditionally we have expected men and women to act in that way, within that mold. I'm sure along the way 'behind the scenes' not everyone fitted to that outward mold - perhaps the occasional woman in the family was more 'together' 'organised' and a 'leader' than her husband, perhaps the occasional father was kinder and more empathic/ nurturing to his children than his wife..? (despite outward appearances)
Anyone who typically fell outside of the expectation of what men and women have been harassed. Men who were too feminine/ weak/ sensitive/ gay not being considered 'manly' enough. Women in leadership being hassled for being too masculine, too dominating.
I wouldn't claim that the media is that strong, personally. Perhaps in the last few years or in the earlier feminist movement (though I'm no expert). Perhaps media and liberation - the ability to have a career, to be a leader which was currently so supressed, was reason for celebration? Also, I think sometimes it is necessary to have a bit of discontentment at inequality in order to raise awareness of an issue and to bring about change. Obviously different places and cultures need to modernise in their own way (for example France needed a revolution, England didn't, to bring power to the people - some places may only progress with disharmony others might change more slowly over time).
More recently, though, I have seen more evidence that we have relaxed a little, and that science is finding some basic differences between men and women (monitoring reactions in the brain etc, levels of testosterone). It seems that we are realising that there are differences, but that there are always variations. We need to accept that there are all kinds of variations, and therefore not have expectations. We need to accept that a woman might make as equally a brilliant boss or leader or construction project manager or engineer as a man. We also need to recognise that men can make brilliant stay-at-home-dads, nurses, teachers etc. I'm not saying that we should aim for a 50-50 balance in any particular job, as I agree that nature puts us generally into the category of man / woman and with that comes particular attributes that may lead to particular careers etc.
When the expectation remains that a womans place really is ideally in the home (not that there is anything wrong with being a homemaker/ mother) then it can be very difficult for someone who does not fit that mold to feel 'normal' or 'acepted'.
Homemaking and mothering needs to be a choice not an expectation. When it is expected to go to university, find a husband and become a homemaker, then anyone who falls outside of this is considered slightly abnormal, or is not fully catered for in society, may feel pressure or disappointment from family/ friends/ self.. etc
I agree that we need to recognise the importance of and value of motherhood. Perhaps we need to relax a bit and re-embrace motherhood as a valid career option. But it still needs to be a free and liberal choice - this is what I would predict is not completely apparent in some strongly traditional societies where the pressure of expectation can be huge. And I imagine if you were to truthfully survey a portion of Japanese women, I would say they do not necessarily feel as ideally free in choice as you may believe they are.
I guess my definition of equality is different. I believe equality must first come from the law, then with freedom from prejudice/ racism/ sexism (now there are laws to deal with those offenses, though they still exist in subtle ways), then there is freedom from expectation - with the ability to be completely ones-self and make completely ones own choices without outside influence/ domination/ expectation swaying your choice.
We also need to allow fathers to be loving and nurturing to their children, not only in the monetary sense of being the 'breadwinner', but also in the sense of allowing them to spend time with their family. I think its wonderfull that fathers as well as mothers here can now take a significant amount of paid leave around the time that their child is born to be with and enjoy their family.
I think it is a beautiful thing when both the mother and father truly share parenting, both contributing to the finances and time spent with the children. This is how I personally would like my (future) family to be - where I can continue to work and engage my mind whether only 10 or 20 or 30 hours a week (again, not to say that mothering is not valid use of time and mind...) and where my partner/ husband can also share looking after the children and also contributing finances. I find this a beautiful thing. (though again I'm not saying it is a choice that everyone will want to make)
I do not think that parents sharing the child-care/ financing is 'doing the same thing' and therefore inefficient. For a start, both should be equally capable at each - we already know that women are equally as intelligent as men and can therefore survive in the workforce earning money. I also know that some of my male friends/ acquaintences are far better cooks than some of my female friends. And anyway, the thing I consider of most importance is not the tasks to be done, but the time spent with the family. And there can never be 'wastage' or 'inefficiency' in that. Just because I have one friend doesn't mean I don't need another. One has the patience to listen to my long stories, one I can laugh and joke around with, another i can debate the meaning of life with.
Well anyway, theres a few more comments for ya
Silverbackman said:There is a big difference when a mother raises their own kids as opposed to some lady who has no biological ties to the child, only money ties if you really look at it.
I think in most countries in the world women have a choice to do what they want legally
...Parents have no say to what their kids want to do, that is how it is in Nature and it applies to human beings as well.
Silverbackman said:[font="] [/font]I don't think we have to follow Nature literally, but at least follow the outline. I do not believe the purpose of motherhood is to have many kids. That is up to the mother and father how many kids they have, and I discourage too many kids. .
Silverbackman said:Having a career is fine but a mother's number one role in life is motherhood, because kids are the future of the world and need to be brought up with love by their own mother. .
Silverbackman said:Don't get me wrong, I am not saying a mother should be the sole parent of their children and the father does not get to have any say in anything. I encourage fathers to spend as much time with their kids, they after all can teach the children some things the mother could not. .
Silverbackman said:I'm not saying all people fall into the rigid men and women category. There are defiantly people who are different, and because there are a few different people the government should not force men to be men and women to be women. However these people who are different are minorities, so the minority point of view should not be promoted more than the majority point of view. All people should have tolerance for any type of lifestyle, if a woman wants to become a world class boxer or wealthy business woman let them go right ahead. If a man wants to become a nurse or full-time homemaker let them. However as we know these are all alternative lifestyles, which are okay but there are lifestyles that should be practiced more than other ones. They obviously cannot be strict majority lifestyles, but they should be logical and ideal.
Silverbackman said:So of course I want all people to be tolerant of any men and women who are not that close to their gender. It is okay, they are only doing what they believe is right. But when the minority tries to push their beliefs down our throats it is not right. Typical example is Gay Marriage.
Silverbackman said:Homemaking is a choice yes, but keep in mind if a woman wants to commit her life to raising children in being a proper adult she will be at home a lot. Why not make things easier for the family and do housework? It’s the woman's choice, I really don't mind if she and her husband find a better way to do house chores, but motherhood is the number one importance here.
Silverbackman said:About stay at home dads, while it may seem to be no different than a woman there is a difference. Women have been doing this type of stuff for the longest of times, they will always be far superior in what they do than men. Nature also did not intend for men to stay at home as the woman did. There are some species of birds that do this, but the bottom line is we are not birds, we are human beings!.
Silverbackman said:And besides, stay-at-home-dads are more prone to health problems, which isn't surprising. !.
smkolins said:If I may interpose slightly - adoptive parents may have no biological ties to the child, (other than the food the child eats every day of their life and medicines they take throughout their life, while in their care) I would not welcome this kind of characterization of their/our position.
Just something to pull in another perspective on the situation of society and parenthood.
I am free said:Hello Silverbackman,
You seem to be antagonised by fire brand feminists who claim that women are superior to men. I agree with you there. Women are not in any way superior to men just as men are not in any way superior to women.
Nature has indeed designed men and women differently. The fact that the bodies, brains, hearts and minds of men and women work differently is very obvious. But men and women are complete human beings nevertheless. Each individual is independant regardless of whether they are male or female or both or neither .
The only "role" a person has is to understand his/her true calling and follow that. That is nature. That is how each individual can contribute best to society. It just maybe that more women find that their calling is to be a mother. So be it.
When you generalise "it is the nature of all women to want to be mothers and that they should stick to that role", the person no longer is looking within to understand her true nature, her true passion. This is not nature.
At_the_Wellspring said:Hi, I am free
Looks like my mammoth post managed to slip in just before yours. And I meant to be brief! ha!
I agree with you
Nature is to discover who we are and become our True Self, and one of my main problems is the categorisation that we humans seem to like to do, the defining lines between everything.
Anyway I need to stop writing now... eyes are going blurry from looking at this screen too long...
At_the_Wellspring said:and often mothers who don't get out of the house much crave the ability to talk with, chat with, debate with, adults of their own intellectual ability. I don't think that is so unusual. i would say it is very important for this interaction with other adults is essential to stay connected to the world outside the house. And I know some women find that relief in 'coffee groups' and 'playgroups' socialising with other parents, but I think it is an equally valid option to find that stimulation in a working environment.
lunamoth said:Or you can find us spending an inordinate amount of time chatting about religion online!
lunamoth (mother of two)
path_of_one said:And what of the many "primitive" religions- the animistic religions that pre-dated the world religions and were so widespread? Many of these give equal standing to men and women in spiritual matters and women generally had great amount of authority over themselves and their households.
Personally, I think it's just bizarre that we have any issues whatsoever with gender and spiritual authority. It always struck me, from the time I was a small child, as being counterproductive and a waste of women's spiritual (and other) gifts. As a woman, I feel strongly that I answer to God, not to the men in my community, household, or whatever. And who better to answer to? Who better to guide my actions? What better authority exists?
9Harmony said:I personally would not want the responsibility of serving on the Universal House of Justice. Being the first educator of my children, how could I possibly do that adequately while simultaneously serving the entire Baha'i world? Those who are elected to serve on the Universal House of Justice basically give up having any personal life of their own. To me it seems to be more of a show of God's mercy to women. I think there is a wisdom enshrined within that escapes the average onlooker.