Friday, August 01, 2008

Virginity

Found the following description here, and absolutely loved it. Though I can't call myself a feminist, reading related, sensible articles never fails to surprise me with how much we have come to accept men as superior to us, or their decisions or thoughts being more "correct." Yikes!

Even more than Satyavati, Kunti is a virgin in the Jungian sense. Originally, this word connoted precisely the opposite of what it has come to mean. Ishtar and Aphrodite, the goddesses of love in ancient Mesopotamia and Greece, were called virgins. The later patriarchal cultures denounced them as immoral and wanton. The boon of virginity is not just a physical condition but refers to an inner state of the psyche which remains untrammeled by any slavish dependence on another, on a particular man. She is one-in-herself, an integrated personality who "belongs to herself while she is virgin-unwed and may not be compelled either to maintain chastity or to yield to an unwanted embrace… This liberty of action involves the right to refuse intimacies as well as to accept them… It may be used of a woman who has had much sexual experience; it may be even applied to a prostitute. Its real significance is to be found in its use as contrasted with married."

Wow!

PS: Found this link thanks to Thought Room who left a comment on Unmana's blog.

7 comments:

Unmana said...

Yes, I loved that whole piece. It shows the women as smart and empowered. However, in spite of all that, they were still sidelined and couldn't inherit the throne.

simplypallu said...

True. The funny part is, they always wanted the throne for their husbands and sons. If they were so good, why couldn't they think of taking over? Why only bring up sons who can rule, why not do it yourself?

simplypallu said...

I mean, inspite of being free-spirited, smart women, they were still giving in to patriarchal system!

Thought Room said...

I think it was perhaps "despite the partriachal system" these women were free spirited and smart. Sometimes the person ruling is not as powerful as the person behind the throne. Power is yet a bondage. For a free spirit, power is not an attraction.

simplypallu said...

Hmm, now that's a good take on it. But what I meant was, did they do all that only so that their "sons" could be kings? Why are these women never shown to be wanting daughters and bringing them up such that they could lead a kingdom into prosperity. Or simply, why did they only have (or want) sons in the first place?

Thought Room said...

Well perhaps, power is a masculine concept of survival. The feminine concept has always been social networking and adaptability. When they are queens or in any way related to a male idea of dominance, sons play an important role. I keep in mind that this was a fiction that reflected that then society. I dont accuse it for being a patriarcal society(that was a fact-no point cribing), but given the situation, I admire, these women for not loosing their identity. As for wanting daughters, that would perhaps prescribe, that success is only acceptable if it is masculine in nature.

simplypallu said...

Hmm, interesting perspective. And yes, they are admirable women.