“You cannot deny entry of women based on traditions which are against the principles of the Constitution,” ... "In Hindu dharma there is no denomination of a male or female. A Hindu is a Hindu" observed the Supreme Court of India on April 13, 2016, on the Sabarimalai Ayyappan temple issue.
Earlier, the Mumbai High Court had observed that “women cannot be barred from entering the Shani Shinganapur temple.... Even women can go where men can”. But the same court said: “Prefer not to interfere, era of intolerance” in the Haji Ali case, completely forgetting ‘the principles of the constitution’!
This so-called struggle for equality or ‘Right to Pray’ has no basis at all in Hindu ethos.
In the name of secularism, the Courts are interfering in the religious affairs and spiritual practices of Hindus alone. They are just afraid of applying the same logic (gender equality) in the case of Muslims and Christians. Islam and Christianity are monolithic religions, whereas Hinduism is individual-centric.
The other day, I entered a tea shop for a cup of tea. There were about 10-12 people sitting in the tea shop, sipping tea. It was 6.30 pm. The shop owner got up from his seat, lit a lamp (diya) and started performing aarti to ‘his’ Goddesses - Lakshmi and Saraswati. All the 10-12 people, including myself, sitting in the shop, never bothered to respect his religious sentiments, nor did he expect any reciprocity. Remember, all of them are Hindus and perform pooja to the same Goddesses at our homes. Can this happen in any other religion?
So what is applicable to Muslims and Christians does not apply to Hindus. There are thousands of Gods and Goddesses in Hinduism. Any Hindu is free to chose any God or Goddesses and perform Pooja in the way he likes. There is no rigid formality.
Abrahamic religions say: “God created man in his own image”. Hinduism says: “Man created God in his image”. Thousands of Gods and Goddesses (Ishtadevatas) are ‘created’ by Hindus and poojas are performed to them in the way they like. This is the beauty of Sanatan Hindu Dharm. Who is the Court to say how poojas should be performed and by whom? And we call it a ‘secular’ nation! If someone does not like one temple, he can very well go to another temple. Every temple is open to all Hindus. But there are certain temples meant exclusively for men as well as women.
Attakul Temple in Thiruvananthapuram and Chakkulathukavu temple in Alappuzha in Kerala organise naari puja (women worship) and women-only annual festivals (pongals). The Savitri temple in Pushkar, Rajasthan, and Shri Path temple in Chandauli in Uttar Pradesh are women-only temples and bar the entry of men completely. Such temples are exceptions and not the rule, for scientific reasons. But no men complain.
Any person who wishes to follow certain God has to, therefore, follow the traditions of that God. That is devotion. It is Discretion, not Discrimination.
This so-called struggle for equality or ‘Right to Pray’ has no basis at all in Hindu ethos. Women or advocates who are pushing for entry into Sabarimalai Ayyappan temple are fighting the case without understanding the essence of Hindu philosophy.
There has been a newfound zeal in liberal circles to ‘liberate’ Hinduism from the grip of Hindus without under-standing the basic philosophy of Sanatan Hindu Dharm.
These are ‘Breaking India’ forces. In the name of ‘reformation’, they want to de-Hinduise and break Hindu society with superficial issues, misusing courts who look at everything ‘constitutionally’ rather than refer to knowledge and tradition of Hinduism. West trained media acts as a handmaiden to these people with shallow knowledge of religion and dharm.
The main force behind this Breaking India forces is one Trupti Desai. Is she a Hindu at all? I do not find any ‘Hinduness’ in her - neither in her dress nor in her hair style. She recently abused a temple priest in filthy language. She was a member of Congress party, and then jumped into AAP bandwagon. She may have political ambitions, because after winning in Shani Shinganapur, she is trying for women’s entry into the Mahalaxmi temple in Kolhapur, and then into the Sabarimalai in Kerala. It is funny that a woman along with a handful of others, has come to the ‘rescue’ of Sanatan Hindu Dharm. Arnab Goswami of Times Now patted her on her back and eulogized her, in his show. The Bombay High Court too has come to the help of such a woman of lose morals. May be, they are all birds of the same feather.
Women in India have been recognised scholars and mentioned with respect in Vedas. They have contributed ‘Richas’ in Vedas. We are worshiping women as Goddesses - Lakshmi, Saraswati, Parvati, etc. Our God, Bhagwan Shiv, has offered half of his body to his consort Parvati, and became Arthanaarishwar. So, do we Hindus need to learn equality for women from Islam and Christianity? And the courts have ample time to lecture to Hindus about gender equality, but have no time to decide on important cases, such as Ram Janmabhoomi and also on Bail for Sadhvi Pragya, Swami Aseemanand, Swami Amrutanand Devtirth, Col. Purohit, Asharam Bapu, etc.
Today, Hinduism has many Sadhvis, Sanyasinis and Matajis. They have their ashrams and do yeomen services, both spiritual and social, to the entire humanity. Is there any such Matajis in Islam and Christianity? Has there been any women Imams or Moulvis in Islam? Why there is no women Bishops and Cardinals in Christianity? Why Muslim women are not allowed inside Mosques? Why Christian women are not allowed to lead prayers? Will the Court dare question these gender inequalities in Islam and Christianity? They will not, because they are scared. In fact, the concept of women Gods and God-women is alien to these Abrahamic religions.
Sanatan Hindu Dharm that worships woman as the highest form of divinity cannot be anti-woman. Therefore, this so-called ‘Right to Pray’ campaign is not about gender equality. It is a political ploy of irreligious people to wreak Hindu traditions, with the help of courts and the anti-Hindu media.
And the Courts are trying to reduce the polymorphic religion to a bunch of meaningless myths, which is bound to anger Hindus.
The Courts, and the media, will be well advised to stop testing the patience of Hindus and not interfere in their religious affairs and spiritual practices.