Whatever is left over from the archives of the old Raganuga.Com forums after most of the substantial threads were moved to the relevant areas of the main forums.
An Indian Woman Speaks Out - On Sati & Western Male Fascination with
betal_nut - Fri, 12 Dec 2003 04:13:26 +0530
This is in response to Adiyen's admiration for the two unfortunate and psychologically manipulated Indian women who killed themselves over their husbands' cheating. Yes they may have been living in a "free" western culture, so what? Since birth we women of Indian origin (no matter where on the globe we might be transplanted) are taught to be pativrat, pativrat, pativrat till the cows come home. What that translates to in modern day times is "your sole purpose in life is to marry, please ur husband, have kids (preferably sons)". So it is only natural that those ladies think their lives are over if their hubbies are unfaithful. Afterall, if they divorce them, what will be their reputatiobns in their families' circles as "divorcees"? There is no way that these women will think, "ok, my hubby is unfaithful, that is unfortunate, but i can get thru this, i can divorce, seek therapy to heal my wounds and then get on with a great life without him." You say Adiyen that how could westerner even understand the depth of such emotions as those women who died an "honourable death" rather than live a dishounerable life? Well, if u can't understand it , consider yourself very very forutunate. If women in the west COULD understand it, maybe they would also be doing the same tragic things. I can understand it both from an indian and western perspective, the only thing to understand that this is just another tribal "honour killing" that was ingrained in their blood and samskar from birth. Nothing more to it. It is always the women who are responsible in one way or another for the family honour. This is just a modern day example of that. As far as eve teasing ... well ive been to Islamic as well as mediterrenean countries and nowhere was i harrassed like i was in my own country of India , that too in "holy" places like Mathura/Vrindavan. Don't bemoan ur birth in the west. Be grateful for it. Especially if u are a woman.
adiyen - Sat, 13 Dec 2003 01:01:36 +0530
Dear Betel nutji,
I am indeed a western man, and I completely understand and sympathise with your opinion and your right to express your feelings on this difficult issue.
However I need to point out to you that I did not just read about this woman's life from a book. The woman who 'committed sati' is in fact a relative of mine by my marriage, lasting over 2 decades now, with an Indian woman whose experience may exceed yours. So it is not me your are taking issue with but my Indian wife, who also believes she has seen these things from both sides. In terms of age and experience, too, I suspect she is senior to you, as there aren't yet many Indian women her age on the Internet.
So, sorry, this has nothing to do with any general 'western men's fascination' on my part.
I think I could write several books myself by now about Indian men/womens fascination too.
But seriously, I respect your opinions nonetheless. I personally think all sides on such issues, especially those affecting Indian women who I deeply sympathise with (why would I spend nearly half my life with one otherwise?) must be heard with respect. But that's my point, and of several Indians who may disagree with you: there are many sides to these issues. Actually my wife will probably agree with you on some things and disagree on others. I certainly agree with you that the extent to which Indian women are silenced and abused within their culture should not be tolerated.
I thank you for taking the time to read my post and write your thoughtful response, which I appreciate. Please continue to contribute your ideas in any way you see fit.