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lillipooh

Buddhism and Gender equality

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Well, maybe capitalism or post-capitalism is not the most developed form of society, but just one of the forms of society. Personnally, I prefer a single strong but moral leader rather than a crowd of individuals each claiming their rights and asserting their selfishness. So many of our western leaders are just puppets in the hands of capital.

 

Of course there is injustice in every country, just as there are spiritually evolved people and selfish people everywhere. But I would not place our western society on a pedestal or above the Asian societies. Injustices take many different forms and our western ones are specifically dangerous since they are often presented as virtuous.

 

I don't believe in a linear development, linear evolution or linear history. Like many contemporary scientists I am convinced that development takes simulatenously in different places and that it does not necessarily lead from the primitive to the highly evolved.

 

Anyhow, as has been pointed out in one of the previous posts, we make the world we live in. Consequently, I do not want to frown on other societies and pretend that the one I live in is better, because I am acutely aware of all the drawbacks of this reality of mine that I/we call society.

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And by the way, India has the same democratic mechanisms as our society: general elections, democratically elected government and a parliament consisting of members of parliament that represent their constituencies etc.

 

They may not have the privilege of free education and healthcare, but as you are probably aware, these privileges are slowly disappearing from our society as well.

 

Please, explain in what way our society is more evolved than for example Indian? I'm speaking about the official social structure, not the mentality of individuals.

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Tashi Delek,

And by the way, India has the same democratic mechanisms as our society: general elections, democratically elected government and a parliament consisting of members of parliament that represent their constituencies etc.

 

Please, explain in what way our society is more evolved than for example Indian? I'm speaking about the official social structure, not the mentality of individuals.

Interesting idea - that progress is not linear. I guess it is possible.

 

I didn't mean to say that western society is generally better than eastern. It seems that there are some notions, which developped in the west and can be useful also for the east and vice versa. What I see positive in the west is: democracy, for now still functioning (social) system, highly organized society, material comfort, high-tech science, creativity etc. In the east the most interesting things seem to be spirituality and wisdom. It could be also put the other way around: west being materialistic and east being chaotic. Yet, these are only concepts, conventional reality is probably somewhere in between.

 

Also, it is interesting to see how both poles are projecting on another: e.g. westerners see the east as a spiritual paradise and might be surpised, when encountering moral etc. corruption, easterners see the west as a material paradise and might be surprised, when encountering poverty and misery.

 

Tibetans seem to serve as a good example of the east-west exchange: before encountering the western culture they lived in a kind of Middle age society (not necessearily bad), today they have a western like constitution, they embraced democracy, separated religion and the state, His Holiness, who Himself praises science, insists that Tibetans should get educated also in a western way etc. On the other hand the west, which is spiritualy retarded due to historic reasons, got the insight into priceless Tibetan treasures of wisdom.

 

I believe that His Holiness once said that the western mind focused on the matter and the eastern on the spirit - therefore we developed science and they have Emptiness :lol: I think His Holiness also said that there are two things he finds really interesting in the west: creativity (which is driving the whole society "forward") and very good organisation of humanitarian help. Also, He said that democracy and communism seem to be a good combination, perhaps communism as implemented historically being too focused on the material side, but the idea correlates Buddist views of the material side of life.

 

I don't really know India that well. I heard though that the post service is not reliable :wink: Seriously, I guess that westerners are beginners on the spiritual path and easterners are probably also taking something from the west. Surely, both principles can complement eachother for the benefit of all.

 

Best regards,

 

Draftsman

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Tashi Delek!

 

I see this topic already took different directions to cover many areas of interest. 8)

 

But I would like to add just one remark, concerning the original question.

When speaking about gender equality, we quickly find the fault in the system which gives more opportunities to some and less to some others. Ok, surely, one can see things like this, and there is also karma which causes us to be born in such position.

 

On the other side we can also ask ourselves how our own mind generates this situation. Just a small and quite direct example: how many women do I know who claim they can't handle a screwdriver, change a lightbulb or copy a file in the computer?? I can see no reason for this in the system, in the society, democracy, anatomy, religion ...

So as long as I see women who themselves (quite some feminists among them too) claim they are not able to do such simple tasks, and use the shield of femininity to justify this - where is the foundation to discuss gender equality?

 

BTW: For those who may not know - yes, I am female. :lol: So I won't discuss men who claim they can't cook or operate a washing machine - I'll leave this task to a man.

o:)

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Concerning social activism which was previously mentioned, I just read a quote from Georges Roux, who founded a Christian sect, claming at one point in his life that he was the reincarnation of Jesus Christ. He also said, amongst many other things, that medecine was useless, that one could heal with his/her hands as long as he/she was in harmony with his consciousness and cosmos.

 

Anyways, here is the quote, that made me think, how can we hope to make a good soup, if the ingredients are bad to begin with...:

 

"Wanting to improve humanity, that is to say the whole of men and women, without improving the quality of Mankind, is a utopia: the world will only become better if each man and woman is better."

 

Best regards,

Frederic

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Wangmo, my feelings exactly!

 

Women, me included, often put ourselves in a position of "helplessness" and indirectly reasser the "superior" position of men. I admit that we often also do quite the opposite... :roll:

 

In any case, as so many times before, we come to the conclusion that there's nothing to complain about and that we should change ourselves to make a better world. ;-F

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Tashi Delek,

On the other side we can also ask ourselves how our own mind generates this situation. Just a small and quite direct example: how many women do I know who claim they can't handle a screwdriver, change a lightbulb or copy a file in the computer?? I can see no reason for this in the system, in the society, democracy, anatomy, religion ...

So as long as I see women who themselves (quite some feminists among them too) claim they are not able to do such simple tasks, and use the shield of femininity to justify this - where is the foundation to discuss gender equality?

 

BTW: For those who may not know - yes, I am female. :lol: So I won't discuss men who claim they can't cook or operate a washing machine - I'll leave this task to a man.

o:)

Just recently I listened to the lecture of a Jungian psychologist. As it is known Jung claimed that each person has 4 distinctive basic functions (intuition, thinking, sensing, feeling). If I understood correctly each person has all 4 functions, but in different proportions. So, one of the four functions is superior, second and third are in between and (one) the fourth is always inferior. The lecturer claimed that he is personally extremelly clumsy and impractical with technical work. So according to him such inability (e.g an inferior function) is a kind of structural necessity in every person. And it is also quite common that each "type" is favouring his own "superior" function as the best, which could explain different "isms" - like chauvinism, feminism etc. But enough about this internal Jungian stuff.

 

What if e.g statistics showed that men are predominantly more comfortable with technical work and women predominantly with language? Does this mean that their complaints over their own inability on certain fields are at least partially acceptable/legitimate? :< And if yes, should this really have any meaning for the problem of gender equality?

 

I never heard for an individual, who had problems with copying a file on the computer :lol:

 

Best regards,

 

Draftsman

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Tashi Delek.

 

Does this mean that their complaints over their own inability on certain fields are at least partially acceptable/legitimate?

 

What inabilities we are talking about here from the Buddhist`s point of view? To ram a nail into wall I would use a screwdriver or a hammer or what ever device, which would be at hand. But, to develop equanimity, which is fundamental for developing Bodhicitta all the sentient beings have to be considered as our mothers. Mothers are women, who care for us selflessly by any possible means they had/have/will have. And, Lillipooh, here you`ve got a "female" aspect of the Buddhahood.

 

Best regards,

Simona

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Tashi Delek,

I never heard for an individual, who had problems with copying a file on the computer :lol:

I did - my grandmother!:D But, when instructed, she makes perfect exact notes and then follows them :)

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Well, Draftsman, everything is relative. The specimen of male gender in our household complicates every simple technical procedure and only after prolongued planning, thinking and repeated visits to the shops to get the right nail or screw he will manage to carry out his project e.g. putting up a shelf. The whole process can take months... :crunch: :roll:

 

The entire process is very enervating to me as a female, but in the end I really appreciate the final result. Hmmm, it just ocurred to me that there might be a hidden agenda behind it... :?

 

Anyway, it's time I took the hammer in my own hands, but then 99% of household chores will be my responsibility... :evil:

 

It seems that men have devised a very cunning strategy of comfortable living while being catered to and appreaciated by their women at the same time. :roll:

 

I guess from the Buddhist point of view this is a great opportunity to practice patience and tolerance, but as Rinpoche has pointed out, at some point we must draw the line. If anyone knows where that point is, I would appreciate it if he/she would share it we me/us. :!: :?:

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Tashi Delek,

What inabilities we are talking about here from the Buddhist`s point of view? To ram a nail into wall I would use a screwdriver or a hammer or what ever device, which would be at hand. But, to develop equanimity, which is fundamental for developing Bodhicitta all the sentient beings have to be considered as our mothers. Mothers are women, who care for us selflessly by any possible means they had/have/will have. And, Lillipooh, here you`ve got a "female" aspect of the Buddhahood.

[align=justify]I was just referring to Wangmo's post, not to say that using a screwdriver is an essential quality :lol:. And I agree with Dechen about reliability of men on this field, the agreement being based on personal experience (I am a male :v). But seriously, I meant to say that even if men and women are different in a way, so that one gender is in average better in some samsaric fields than the other and vice versa, this should have nothing to do with equality. It is possible to be different and equal, right?

 

Equality is about the treatment of people and their rights not about their characteristics. From this point it can be argued that e.g. chauvinism and a part of feminism took typical characteristics of one gender and made a myth out of them (a part of feminism in a way giving too much weight to men's characteristics and seeing equality as sameness on traditionally male fields). E.g. it is often said that if one gender is more represented on one samsaric field of human occupation than the other, this is a prove of discrimination by itself. But isn't this logic indirectly taking the right of one gender to legitimately refuse its participation? E.g. in Slovenia it is quite common for women (and morally not yet corrupted men :roll:) to refuse to go into politics regardless of the valid rules, demanding a minimum quota of women. And who could blame them, considering the state the politics is in. But again, this could be only a chauvinistic excuse to prolong the lack of sameness. I guess each of us should try to find out for himself/herself whether his/her motivation is pure. I lack wisdom to answer this (albeit a samsaric) dilemma :<.

 

Best regards,

 

Draftsman[/align]

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I agree with Draftsman that equality is not about characteristics but treatment of others.

 

I would also like to add that I see no necessity of everybody being everywhere and doing everything. I am one of those women who would never go into politics, but not because I feel that it's for men only, but because I have no interest whatsoever in that field. Maybe many women in general share my feelings so the low representation of women in politics in Slovenia is due to that, although there a quite a few women who want to be actively involved.

 

Equality should not be measured in how many people are doing what - it is a matter of attitude, treatment of others.

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Tashi Delek!

 

Just recently I listened to the lecture of a Jungian psychologist. As it is known Jung claimed that each person has 4 distinctive basic functions (intuition, thinking, sensing, feeling). If I understood correctly each person has all 4 functions, but in different proportions. So, one of the four functions is superior, second and third are in between and (one) the fourth is always inferior. The lecturer claimed that he is personally extremelly clumsy and impractical with technical work. So according to him such inability (e.g an inferior function) is a kind of structural necessity in every person.

Haha, this innovative explanation deserves a few points for its originality. :twisted:

 

But where are we heading? Do we want to accept that someone claims that Jung said that our mind necessarily has to have some limitations, as otherwise the balance of the world will be upset, or psychoanalysis will be in trouble :twisted: ... - or did we say we want to achieve a mind without limitations, e.g. Enlightenment? Can we seriously at the same time be on the Path to Enlightenment, and try to hide behind the makeshift shelter provided by adhering to the "characteristics of our gender", or "structural necessities according to Jung"? :?:

 

All the best. :)

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Tashi Delek.

 

But isn't this logic indirectly taking the right of one gender to legitimately refuse its participation? E.g. in Slovenia it is quite common for women (and morally not yet corrupted men :roll:) to refuse to go into politics regardless of the valid rules, demanding a minimum quota of women. And who could blame them, considering the state the politics is in.

 

I would claim that in Slovenia there is quite a lot of women in the politics, but maybe they are not so exposed as men are. This is becasue they usually do not cast on the front positions i.e. they can reach the positions only to a certain levels. Usually they are greatly represented on the levels which we could call them "professional" and in the point when professionalism turns into strick politics i. e. taking decission, their physical presence vanish, which does not mean, that... :wink:

 

Best regards,

Simona

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Tashi Delek,

But where are we heading? Do we want to accept that someone claims that Jung said that our mind necessarily has to have some limitations, as otherwise the balance of the world will be upset, or psychoanalysis will be in trouble :twisted: ... - or did we say we want to achieve a mind without limitations, e.g. Enlightenment? Can we seriously at the same time be on the Path to Enlightenment, and try to hide behind the makeshift shelter provided by adhering to the "characteristics of our gender", or "structural necessities according to Jung"? :?:

[align=justify]Hmm, yes I was kind of hoping that no one will notice minor defficiencies in the explanation :oops:, consequently forcing me to come out with something better. No, but seriously. Maybe the difference between conventional and ultimate reality is the reason. The explanation I quoted is obviously based on the expectation that there is a kind of (samsaric) self we need to develop, proportionally choosing between four functions in the process (lecturer's words, not necessarily Jung's, who seemed keen in mysticism). I added to this that maybe male and female gender are in average more close to one of the functions. Of course, from the Buddhist point of view gender is a samsaric entity and the goal is Enlightenment. So surely, ultimately these two are not compatible.

 

Yet, I wouldn't say that the explanation given is completely without conventional value. E.g. there have been researches of the brain claiming that women have better connections between both sides of the brain (e.g. language), while men are bettter in space orientation - in average. So maybe this could be expanded to Jungian functions. This is extremelly slippery ground, I admit, but I have to find some kind of explanation now that Wangmo exposed some minor defficiencies in the first version :lol:.

 

Since consciousness is obviously the same, it would be good to know when does gender as limitation disappear - with emptiness or maybe sidis?

 

About gender representation in politics: I read prior to the last parliamentary election that parties with internal quotas had problems finding enough women candidates. But politics might not be a good example.

 

Best regards,

 

Draftsman[/align]

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Tashi Delek!

Since consciousness is obviously the same, it would be good to know when does gender as limitation disappear - with emptiness or maybe sidis?

Hum, I didn't actually say that gender by itself is a limitation. Maybe in the sense that if you think of your body as a tool, this tool can have certain limitations - like a hammer may be a good tool, but still it isn't very good for cutting. :wink:

In this sense we could maybe say that having a body of this or that gender is more suitable for this or that task. So, I would say the gender can be an advantage, even.

But if I come back to women who claim that they can't use a screwdriver - often this is simply the usage of the gender to one's own advantage (to make some man do it :twisted:), or it can be a self-imposed limitation, which I think would disappear as soon as the person stops clinging to it. I know many women who claim they aren't "talented for technical things" so they don't even try. Maybe the worst case was one who, when a lightbulb burnt out, waited for some man to come around to replace it - so her flat was getting darker and darker, until some male appeared ... :D

 

Best wishes.

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Just recently I listened to the lecture of a Jungian psychologist. As it is known Jung claimed that each person has 4 distinctive basic functions (intuition, thinking, sensing, feeling). If I understood correctly each person has all 4 functions, but in different proportions. So, one of the four functions is superior, second and third are in between and (one) the fourth is always inferior. The lecturer claimed that he is personally extremelly clumsy and impractical with technical work ..

 

What if e.g statistics showed that men are predominantly more comfortable with technical work and women predominantly with language? ..

 

I never heard for an individual, who had problems with copying a file on the computer :lol:

 

Best regards,

 

Draftsman

 

Hm, at the moment C.G. Jung (in his next incarnation) is probably smiling, because as we can read in his biographies he was very gentle and witty man, at all the stupidities that become as "results" of his thoughts from other, much less clever and witty men. 4 basic functions from Jung are one of the many theorethical concepts from this author. That's a well known fact. But! This so called superior/interior relationship between them (first best, second best, third, last ...) which Draftsman heard from some kind Jungian psychologist (monster is very curious who he is) is a complete nonsense for anybody who has a basic knowledge of Jung's work. This "concept" is far to technical, simple and un-witty, and finally not in a spirit of a "developed man", what we can interpret as Jung's goal. Because ... I we would accept this "concept", we have to accept that in at least in one basic human function we will be hendikapeted (???), in two so-so an in one - superior. Hm ...

 

To my opinion it's just a common plea to be unable to do some things :)

 

"Well, my senses are inferior, so I didn't hear you well ..."

 

Secondly, Draftsman is certainly capable to show as statistics about this predominance abot one gender in this field and other in that. But! He's certainly forgetting about the simple truth, that each measurement of this kind (some human qualities) at the moment is a result of many factors from the past. Not just and only the gender but also the influencies from milieu for instance. person can be predomint in one aspect if he/she has many experiences in that field ... I'm sure you can imagine that we can't play it that easy :D

 

Finally ... about not knowing people who can't copy a file ... Hm, all I can say: you probably don't know enough "right" people :D. One day we can exchange anecdotes and it will be fun.

 

Best regards to all :)

 

monster

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Tashi Delek,

I know many women who claim they aren't "talented for technical things" so they don't even try. Maybe the worst case was one who, when a lightbulb burnt out, waited for some man to come around to replace it - so her flat was getting darker and darker, until some male appeared ... :D

You make it sound like it is an excerpt from an old black and white (disaster) movie :D.

 

This so called superior/interior relationship between them (first best, second best, third, last ...) which Draftsman heard from some kind Jungian psychologist (monster is very curious who he is)

I will provide you with the name (out of the forum of course, in order to avoid a possible lawsuit :lol:). Hopefully, I didn't misunderstand the psychologist and am now smearing his name. In general he made a pretty nice impression.

 

is a complete nonsense for anybody who has a basic knowledge of Jung's work. This "concept" is far to technical, simple and un-witty, and finally not in a spirit of a "developed man", what we can interpret as Jung's goal. Because ... I we would accept this "concept", we have to accept that in at least in one basic human function we will be hendikapeted (???), in two so-so an in one - superior. Hm ...

Yes, this is exactly how it sounded. But I didn't resent it much, because the lecturer used it to imply that we have to be tolerant with others and their weak points. But I've heard this claim before (i.e. that two functions in a way oppose eachother, so that one is always developed on the account of the other). Admitting that I am no expert on this field, I am not sure, where I picked it up the first time. Yet, I also heard the other claim - i.e. that one shouldn't make a fetish out of this function theory, since this was certainly not Jung's intention.

 

Secondly, Draftsman is certainly capable to show as statistics about this predominance abot one gender in this field and other in that. But! He's certainly forgetting about the simple truth, that each measurement of this kind (some human qualities) at the moment is a result of many factors from the past. Not just and only the gender but also the influencies from milieu for instance. person can be predomint in one aspect if he/she has many experiences in that field ...

Hmm, I was kind of hoping that nobody will point this out :lol:. But although I am withdrawing with large steps :hello:, I'd still say that at least a tiny part of this difference is gender related, because otherwise different environment influences would surely be proved and would spoil the pattern (i.e. I have to defend, what's left of the first theory :lol:)

 

Finally ... about not knowing people who can't copy a file ... Hm, all I can say: you probably don't know enough "right" people Very Happy. One day we can exchange anecdotes and it will be fun.

Agreed ;-F.

 

Best regards,

 

Draftsman

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Good Draftsman, looking forward for the name :) ...I'll provide some nice real computer stories (not gender oriented)

 

Well, as you all know, statistics is maybe the most abused branch of science. From the results in 4th classes of secondary schools in Slovenia we could jump to conclusion that women are generally more inteligent then their male coevals - after all they have better grades :) ... but this is not true, women at the age of 18 years have better habits of learning and less problems with delinquent behavior. :)

 

monster

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Tashi Delek.

 

In the book “How to practice, the way to a meaningful life” of H. H. The Dalai Lama it is written that to attain the Enlightenment one needs a strong bodily support and therefore a man`s body. In the last life that precede the state of the Buddha, one must have man`s body, though.

In the book “Stages of meditation” also H. H. The Dalai Lama it is written that some of the Buddha`s teachings can be taken literally and the others not and therefore require an interpretation.

I would like to ask for the interpretation the states from the first book mentioned, cause I do not see obligatory logical links between:

1.man`s body and physical strength,

2.physical strength and the power of the consciousness.

 

Best regards,

Simona

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I would like to ask for the interpretation the states from the first book mentioned, cause I do not see obligatory logical links between:

1.man`s body and physical strength,

2.physical strength and the power of the consciousness.

 

It is several time mentioned that a woman's body, due to regular hormonal changes, have more difficulties to keep mental quietness... without which higher Realizations are difficult.

The state of the body does influence the mind. When most people are sick and feel weak, they can't really practice. Same when we are under hormonal unbalance.

 

Though, one should keep in mind that woman like Tara (Tib.: Drolma) has attained Buddhahood with a female body, and have kept it.

So, we might conclude: more difficult but not impossible.

 

With a correct understanding of karma, this "gender fight" is absolutely pointless.

I am not referring about human rights abuse, which take place anywhere in the world, against children, women, but also men on the basis of their color, ethnic or religion, etc... but to the "rebellious" feeling felt and express by some women when facing some (real or not) inequality with men.

As a matter of fact, the opposite do also exist in several situations, even though, surely, less frequent, but not less frustrating (as example: regarding the right of taking care of children, the often obligation for the man to pay alimonies even when cost and care are evenly shared, still some jobs culturally regarded just for women, etc...).

 

So the point is not regarding any "gender situation", but regarding karma. And this is the issue in every aspects of our daily life, which we have difficulty to accept.

We always want the others to be the source of our problem, not willing to accept responsibility over them. This comes from a "culture of victim", largely spread and practiced by the Roman Catholic Church through History.

Men are not all equal in all situations; neither equally treated. Women among women neither. Women among men, or men among women, the same.

 

We only experience the results of the causes we have created ourselves! The gender of this life, the place of our rebirth, the colour of our skin, family, environment, events, .... All is created by our own karma.

And we can't stand this!! Our ego can't accept that karma is acting against ourselves! Our "self" does not want to experience negative situation. If it happens, it's surely because of the others; the fault is outside, of course! Men blame women, women blame men, white blame black, or yellow, and vice versa... Humans blame animals, nature, or even God.

Thus avoiding all possibility to act upon the real causes of their suffering: their own mind.

 

Wherever we are going, our mind is always following us. He is the cause of all. Happiness and unhappiness. Change the culture, the country, the planet, you might always find the same or similar situations, because you are with your mind. And until this one has been worked on, tamed, appeased, you will always encounter insatisfactions.

 

Insatisfaction is not really coming from the others, but from your own mind. Fighting against the others is fighting against oneself. Generate anger and spite, will only come back on you.

 

The situations you find yourself in today is coming from the past. The way you react to them are the causes of your future!

 

All the best, Gelong T. Shenphen

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Clear enough I guess, and better to meditate on this.

 

The thread is already long enough.

 

If you have any further questions, open a new topic.

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