Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for January 29th, 2013

Date: Mon 28 Jan 2013 22:47:31 -0000
From: “Liiladhar Deva”
To: AM-GLOBAL
Subject: How An Ordinary Person Becomes An Intellectual Satan

Baba

== HOW AN ORDINARY PERSON BECOMES AN INTELLECTUAL SATAN ==

Namaskar,
Here following is one critical teaching from Baba about how those who accrue knowledge, without the spirit of welfare, pollute their own mind and endanger the greater society.

“The endeavour to assimilate things in the spiritual world is harmless and blameless. And the attempt to assimilate something in the psychic world, if it is directed towards the welfare of humanity, is also harmless. Otherwise, it pollutes the minds of people and makes them intolerant: it leads to conflicts between dogmas and theories and degrades people to the level of animality.”

“In the past, the world has witnessed many struggles between dogmas, which have caused much bloodshed; this was a regular occurrence in the Medieval Age. And in the present day also, we witness clashes between one theory and another, which cause no less bloodshed; rather the bloodshed is greater than before. The degree of intolerance has increased immeasurably. People have lost faith in their fellow human beings; one state has lost faith in other states. In all spheres of life these days, people think one thing, say another thing, and do something entirely different. That is, hypocrisy is now at its peak.”

“Now the question is: What is the motivation behind this? It is the tendency to assimilate ideas without the spirit of welfare – and, still more than this, the tendency to acquire the objects of material enjoyment in ever-increasing quantities.”

“So whether in the material world or in the intellectual world, the predominant tendency that makes today’s people, both individually and collectively, rush headlong without control, is the instinct of greed. The propensity of greed, if not controlled by rationality, or benevolent intellect, or spiritual practices, will lead to premature death. Nothing can save human beings from this. This instinct of greed has brought the present humanity to such a state that people no longer consider anything as sinful. Rather, they consider the “sin psychology” as a mental weakness, and the worst of sins are being glorified as the height of intellect, not only indirectly, but also openly.” (Shivas Teachings – 1 (continued) (Discourse 10))

CHIEF CAUSE:

ACQUIRING KNOWLEDGE DEVOID OF ANY WELFARE MOTIVE

In His above teaching, Baba clearly warns us that when people gain knowledge goaded by self-interest and not the motive of welfare, then the outcome is extremely harmful. That is the main guideline which Baba has expressed above. Tragically, that is what we see happening in this modern era.

In result, this earth has become “poisonous”, where people have lost faith in their fellow humans. The root cause is one: Assimilating ideas without the spirit of welfare, i.e. acquiring knowledge for a selfish agenda, devoid of concern for others.

In their persistent quest for expansion, people are gaining more and more knowledge. Yet when that knowledge is not fortified with a benevolent outlook and a welfare motive, it is misused. People are employing their brains and intellect for harming, cheating, and deceiving others. They engage in clashes over one theory and another which cause tremendous bloodshed. In result, this earth has become unlivable for the common person.

The chief cause: Acquiring knowledge devoid of any welfare motive, just for selfish ends.

Most are increasing their intellectual capacity so they can gain the upper hand to achieve their selfish agenda. With their insatiable hunger for acquisition, people are hoarding psychic and physical wealth. Out of greed, they are willing to harm and hurt innocent people. This leads to conflicts over various dogmas and theories. There is a blatant lack of concern for others – what to speak of those high ideals of selflessness and sacrifice. Those ideals are essentially absent.

For these reasons, people have literally lost their regard for their fellow human beings. They look upon others with suspicion, fear, ambivalence, hatred, jealousy, and skepticism. All trust is gone. That is the unfortunate trend of this modern era.

And again the chief cause is one: Acquiring knowledge devoid of welfare motive and using that for selfish endeavors.

Bear in mind, knowledge is very important. One should learn. When accompanied by a benevolent intention, that knowledge can be used to help others and do great things on this earth. Goaded by self-interest, that knowledge will only harm society. In that case, knowledge is dangerous. Those who thirst after knowledge for selfish reasons are deadly. That is the main problem on this globe nowadays – knowledge for selfish pursuits leads to conflicts between dogmas and theories in the form of war, exploitation, and the imposition of harmful doctrines. These poisons are engineered by demons who have a lot of knowledge but are extremely selfish and crooked. They are the cause of countless massacres, and much bloodshed and infighting.

Beware of intellectuals who acquire knowledge without any service mentality – they are very dangerous. That is Baba’s explicit warning. We should be careful.

Namaskar,
Liiladhar Deva

The section below demarcated by asterisks is an entirely different topic, completely unrelated to the above letter.
It stands on its own as a point of interest.

********************************************
Common People, Who Through Their Sweat And Blood,

Provide Vitality To Human Society – We Can’t Ignore

“Social progress is not and can never be achieved by individual effort. Some people lend their brains, others their hands, and others their legs. If we consider things carefully, to say that the legs are inferior and that the brain is superior, or that the brain has no value – that intellectuals are always exploiters and manual labourers are all that count – are both equally dangerous ways of thinking. The most important point to consider is who has utilized his or her ability and to what extent. Hanuman [the mighty monkey, a devotee of Rama in the mythological epic the Rámáyańa] fetched huge boulders to build a bridge across the sea, while the squirrels collected small pebbles. Yet intrinsically both these actions have the same value. We have no right to question anybody’s sincerity, nor can we scoff at it. We cannot give more appreciation to those who have not utilized their potentialities properly but have done more work than to those who have fully utilized their talents.”

“Days roll on. Empires, wealth and valorous human deeds ride on the wings of time, creating only brief flashes of brilliance. Against this panorama the efforts of common people, like those of the squirrels, do not receive recognition – they are like stones lost in the shadows of towering mountains. The leaders of society perform outstanding feats which are recorded in glowing letters in the annals of history. The students of later ages do research on them. But the common people, who carried the golden banners of these heroes, disappear into oblivion. If we try to think of all of them, we will never finish. Is it possible to print everyone’s obituaries in the newspaper? Is it possible to arrange commemoration services or to build shrines in memory of everybody? But in my opinion there is no use thinking about whether it is possible or not. Those who are magnanimous will openly recognize the greatness in the outstanding achievements of those who lived in the past, regardless of their intellect, education or rank. Those who through their sweat and blood provide vitality to human society do not need our approbation; but even so, why should we commit a social injustice by ignoring the work they have done, their karma sádhaná?” (Human Society – part 1, Social Justice)

Note: Baba’s above teaching and guideline applies to all realms of life, including the struggle, growth, development, propagation, and establishment of our own Ananda Marga. There are countless nameless, faceless devotees who underwent tremendous hardship in order to propagate the ideals of Ananda Marga. They never came in the spotlight; their names were never in the newspaper; and their addresses may never be known; but, they sacrificed much for the great cause of dharma and universal well-being.

Here they are:

1. The widow whose only son or daughter became a wholetimer in Ananda Marga. In her old age, she suffered because no one was there to take care of her. Her progeny left to serve the greater humanity and due to a lack of governmental or other support, she could not get proper care. The latter years of that widow’s life were filled with emotional challenges, loneliness, and physical hardship. To that widow, we pay our regards. Who can forget her sacrifice.

2. The mother whose children became LFT’s to valiantly serve humanity. Instead of earning and bringing home funds for their laokik family, those idealistic youths sacrificed for the greater good of humanity. Yet their mother was faced with the prospect of “losing” her children – the very ones she raised. To see this unfold before her very eyes was painful and disheartening. No one can understand that woman’s pain. Even then she held on – amidst the struggle and hardship. Who can forget her sacrifice.

3. Those sadhakas (male and female) who faced victimisation, humiliation, and torture by standing up to organised and non-organised religious and social dogmas like caste marriages, racial hatred, and women’s rights etc. Who can forget their sacrifice.

4. The hundreds and thousands – wts and margiis alike – who were unjustly jailed by one tyrant trying to wipe out Ananda Marga. Such innocent sadhakas were arrested, put in isolation, and deprived of the basic necessities like proper food. Some were sentenced to grueling chores and work detail, while others were tortured outrightly. Their sacrifice cannot be forgotten. Who can forget their sacrifice.

5. Those sadhakas who held firm to Ananda Marga ideals in the face of huge backlash and oppression from the government, communists, local social pressure, and the various dogmatic religions. Through no fault of their own, they were sidelined, attacked, and rejected by the status quo. Yet these great sadhakas never bent – they maintained their ideological vision and standard. They sacrificed everything for Ananda Marga. We cannot ignore the work they have done – their karma sadhana. Who can forget their sacrifice.

6. Those brave Wts & Ananda Margiis who lost their lives in massacres and barbarous attacks by the communists. Their grand contributions for the cause of dharma will never be forgotten. Who can forget their sacrifice.

7. Those wives who shouldered more of the domestic responsibilities while their husbands were deeply involved in spreading the name of Ananda Marga and the glory of Lord Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji. Their husbands were unable to properly attend to their domestic responsibilities. Those margii wives had to maintain the home without proper support from their spouse. Yet they carried on, endured the hardship, and managed well. Their determination and hard work continues to stand. Their sacrifice can never be forgotten.

8. Those children who grew up only with their mother because their father was involved in the callings of Ananda Marga dharma pracara and service projects. Due to a lack of paternal guidance and support, their emotional needs were not adequately fulfilled. Yet they tried as best they could – many becoming strong sadhakas and devotees of Marga Guru. We cannot overlook their hardships and how they continued to strive. Who can forget the sacrifice of those young children.

10. All those who faced opposition – whether they be educated or illiterate, rich or poor, or ordinary or not – we should recognise everyone’s contribution. That is what Baba’s teaching tells us. Because of their dedication to the aims, disciplines and tenets of Ananda Marga, they faced so much trouble and animosity, yet they remained firm and spread the teachings of Ananda Marga by their own conduct and sacrifice. No matter how unimportant they may be in the eyes of the public – they are honoured and regarded by sadhakas around the globe. Those brave souls have put forth unparalleled contributions to establish Ananda Marga. Who can forget their dharmic efforts – who can forget their sacrifice. We cannot.

11. Those Wts who left worldly attachments to spread Ananda Marga ideology and the gospel of neo-humanism. Such workers experienced tremendous hardship – a number were jailed and killed. They all faced difficulties, and in some cases life-threatening, problems. Yet they remained true to the dharmic ideals of Ananda Marga as given by Lord Shrii Shrii Anandamurti ji. Their efforts will live on and on in the hearts of sadhakas – all over. We cannot ignore the work they have done – their karma sadhana. Who can forget their sacrifice.

How can we forget the hardships, sacrifice, and tenacity of all those who endured struggle for the sake of propagating and establishing a great ideology. Forever they remain in our hearts and minds. Parama Pita Baba Kii – Jay!
********************************************

Read Full Post »

Date: 29 Jan 2013 06:27:44 -0000
From: “Madhurii”
To: am-global@earthlink.net
Subject: Re: Harmful Competition #2

Baba

== RE: HARMFUL COMPETITION ==

~ Part 2 ~

(Note: This is the second letter in this series. A link to the initial posting on this topic is appended below. – Eds)

Namaskar,
“After years of heated debate and public pressure, the Pentagon (US military headquarters) lifted the ban and gave approval for women to fight on the front lines of the battlefield. In some western nations like the US, this has been a critical issue. Yes, women were allowed to serve in the military. No, they were not intentionally put in dangerous combat zones. Now – at least in the US – that has all changed. Over time, female soldiers will be put in positions of direct combat.

Event then the debate continues: Some women state that women should not be put in harm’s way on the front lines, while a very vocal group of women is demanding that women must be given the right to fight on the front lines and battle the enemy face to face.

In our Ananda Marga, we have our stand based on Baba’s teachings. As we know, males and females have different physical characteristics and capacities. In particular, males are also physically stronger than females.

Baba says, “”There are people who, in the name of giving equal rights to women in all spheres of life, want them to engage in heavy physical and mental labour which is unsuitable for them. Such an outlook is deplorable. It must be accepted that the physical bodies and nervous systems of women are not as strong as those of men, so men and women cannot work in identical areas. Apart from this, for physical reasons women cannot work in the same way every day of the month, and during pregnancy and the post-delivery period the ability to work strenuously is severely restricted. These points must not be overlooked.” (1)

“As in the societies of most other species, in human society also females are physically weaker than males. Because their nervous systems are weaker, their minds are also slightly weak. Nevertheless women have no less value in human society than men. Selfish men, however, have disregarded the value of women; they have taken full advantage, and are continuing to take full advantage, of their weakness. Although men have publicly declared that women should be respected as the mothers of society, they have actually relegated them to the status of domestic cattle and sheep.” (2)

“The physical and mental structure of a woman is such that even though she may have all the requisite ability to take care of her children, it is extremely difficult for her to bring them up properly and to adequately provide for food, clothing, education and medical care all alone; at the same time she has to keep her children with her or near her, or else it becomes difficult for the children to survive. Therefore if men, instead of women, take the main responsibility for providing food and clothing, while women, after duly attending to the needs of the children, where possible or in cases of necessity earn money by working either at home or outside, neither the children nor society will be adversely affected in any way.” (3)

“As the physical strength of women is less than that of men, the latter should always endeavour to save the prestige of women…Special attention should be paid to the comforts of women during festivals, at spiritual conferences, and on other occasions.” (4)

Furthermore, because males are stronger that is why games and sports are done separately: Women compete against women and men compete against men.

Clearly then females do not have the physical strength & stamina that males have. So less physical strength is a critical reason we do not support the recent decision to allow women to fight on the front lines.”

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS

As a woman I read this and must admit I fully support all the points and views expressed. As a sadhaka, it is quite evident that the male and female bodies differ and that we should not compete with one another on the plane of physicality. It is just not appropriate. I definitely do not wish for my daughters to fight on the front lines – nor be part of the armed forces.

Baba has clearly defined specific roles for women and it is quite clear we should not be competing with men for stature in the military, nor involved in long deployments in far away lands while their children remain at home, nor engaging in arduous physical tasks that are more befitting a man.

BABA HAS BEAUTIFULLY DEFINED THE ROLE OF WOMEN

Here again is Baba’s teaching:

“The physical and mental structure of a woman is such that even though she may have all the requisite ability to take care of her children, it is extremely difficult for her to bring them up properly and to adequately provide for food, clothing, education and medical care all alone; at the same time she has to keep her children with her or near her, or else it becomes difficult for the children to survive. Therefore if men, instead of women, take the main responsibility for providing food and clothing, while women, after duly attending to the needs of the children, where possible or in cases of necessity earn money by working either at home or outside, neither the children nor society will be adversely affected in any way.” (3)

ABOUT THE BELOW ARTICLES AND COMMENTS

Below are two moving pieces:
(1) The first is an article from a British war veteran who was the first female to fight on the front lines in the English army.
(2) The second is a collection of public comments about this issue.

I think you will find all of the below quite meaningful and relevant to this discussion.

ARTICLE BY A WOMAN MILITARY OFFICER:

Why Women Should Not Be On The Front Line
by Major Judith Webb

07 April 2007

Major Judith Webb no longer believes women should be at the front line. Major Judith Webb was the first woman to command an all-male field force squadron in the British Army. She retired in 1986 and became headmistress of an independent girls’ school in Somerset. She now runs a children’s nursery.

As the person who in 1982 became the first female army officer to lead men into the field, you might think I would be the last to say the front line is no place for women. But my views have changed since the 19 years I spent in the Army, first as an ambitious second lieutenant and later as a squadron commander.

So even though I was as pleased as anyone to see the pictures of Faye Turney reunited with her small daughter and husband, my first thought was that she should never have been put in the position from which she was captured in the first place.

I no longer believe that we should send women to the front line – by which I mean somewhere they might find themselves in hand-to-hand combat, or cast as aggressors.

Why not? Well, it may not be fashionable but it’s time that society accepted the simple fact that women are different.

Not, please note, inferior, but different physiologically, mentally and emotionally to men and there are some roles for which we are simply not suited. Yes, we may be capable of incredible mental and physical toughness, but there is no getting away from the fact that we are the more compassionate sex; instinctively more nurturing and lacking the thirst for aggression that drives our male counterparts.

During my army days (serving in Germany and Cyprus with the 1st Squadron, 28th Signal Regiment), soldiers would frequently tell me they were keen to go to a war zone – that’s what they’d joined up for.

They were desperate to serve in Northern Ireland and relished the prospect of a skirmish. Not, they would always add, that they would ever admit such sentiments to their wives. By contrast, the women I encountered seemed to enjoy their job despite, rather than because of, the possibility that they might be put in danger.

As the Ministry of Defence pointed out in a document on women in the Armed Forces, their “capacity for aggression was generally lower” and they “required more provocation and were more likely to fear consequences of aggressive behaviour”.

It’s my belief that women with children find it difficult to operate as soldiers in dangerous circumstances. Their priority is all too often for the son or daughter they will leave motherless if they are killed.

Fortunately for me, I deliberately waited until I had left the Army at the age of 37 to have my first child, so I was never placed in the difficult situation.

But the strong emotional ties of motherhood cannot be underestimated. All this makes women less effective than the men with whom they stand on the battlefield.

And the consequences to a fighting unit which must be tightly focused are potentially catastrophic. The mere presence of women also has a dramatic effect on the ability of men to be combat soldiers, as has been proved in those situations around the world where female soldiers serve on the front line.

For example, when a soldier sees a female colleague lying injured, he immediately feels his first duty must be to protect her rather than to stick to the military plan.

We must also accept, as we do in the world of sport, that women’s bodies are engineered differently and this puts us at a disadvantage in a situation which can test you to the limit of your physical endurance.

Even in Israel, where they have conscription for single women, female soldiers rarely serve in front line units. A medical study carried out in 2003 showed that they could carry less weight than men and it’s not physically possible for them to march as far.

Contrast that with the way our armed forces have responded to the introduction of women. An officer I knew told me he was horrified when, for the sake of gender “equality”, the physical demands on men entering the Army were actually reduced.

Just imagine the impact on a unit in the field, which can only ever be as strong as its weakest link.

There is another vital consideration, one that has been demonstrated dramatically over the course of this week, and that is the propaganda advantage we hand our enemies when we place young British women in a vulnerable position.

The response of the public to the news that there was a mother of a three-year-old child among the 15 hostages showed that however much we pretend otherwise, we are not capable of viewing a vulnerable female in the same way as her male counterparts.

Our reaction to her plight handed the Iranians enormous leverage for pressing home their publicity victory.

So what role can women fulfil? Despite the death of two women in Basra on Thursday, there is still room for women in a war zone, but it should always be in a place where they are not likely to be engaged in combat.

Women are particularly suited to work in intelligence positions. It’s a field that comes with its own set of dangers but we are well-suited to it.

I worked in intelligence for seven years and think women have more patience and can be better at analysing fine details.

They can be incredibly useful working as nurses with a support unit, delivering supplies, and in other logistics roles – much as the Wrens did during World War II.

The Army is a great career for many women. But let’s not pretend that it should treat them in exactly the same way as men.

PUBLIC COMMENTS ON THIS ISSUE

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/18.398195-Poll-Women-In-Front-Line-Combat-Role?page=1

Here below are 7 meaningful comment from common people on this issue of whether women should fight on the front lines in military battle.

(A) I don’t think women belong in front-line infantry units. They aren’t the same as men, physically or psychologically. Women and men do not compete against each other in singles tennis, football, rugby, sprinting or other athletics and so on, because of the physical differences.

…the overwhelming majority of women are physically smaller and weaker than the overwhelming majority of men. As such, they will have a greater chance of losing their lives on the front lines than their male counterparts, and further, endangering their unit and mission.

There is also the issue of sexual attraction, hormones…Lack of privacy and so on…the same reasons women do not serve aboard submarines. Months away from partners and the world, there would be sex, unwanted pregnancies… Further, the menstrual cycle and fluctuating hormones /emotions women experience monthly.

(B) ..We’re talking a one-digit percentage of the female population that would fit the bill, and not all of them are interested in a frontline-experience military career. And then there’s still the risk of having an unstable psycho or two amongst the chosen few, which would drop the number of prospects even lower…the frontlines are not the best place for social experiments.

(C) Well as someone who joins the military next week I would say no purely on the grounds of the fitness issue. Currently to get into the military the female fitness standards are lower than the males and when I did the fitness test I don’t think any of the females there would have been able to reach the required standards for males. The standards also go up once you are a part of the military and are even higher for combat units so even if they were allowed to try I would think all of them would fail.

(D) Until recently, the US Marine Corps had very different judgment lines for men and women seeking to enlist, and to pass the CFT and PFT. One of the big differences was that male Marines had to perform actual pull-ups, while female Marines had to do a flexed arm hang. I learned recently that the Corp is actually changing this so that both sexes have to do full pull-ups,

(E) There is also the problem of women being potentially incapable of helping a fallen male soldier in infantry units. She may simply not be strong or big enough to haul 350lbs (say 250 for the guy and another 80-100lbs of gear) of dead weight out of the line of fire.

(F) only the tiniest, tiniest percentage of women would ever be able to meet the physical requirements that males do in order to qualify to be a front line infantryman…Seeing women being badly maimed and killed has a devastating psychological affect on male soldiers. It is biological, undeniable, and would compromise effective military decision making on the front lines. It would cause male soldiers to hesitate and cost lives. I’m all for equality of all peoples but ignoring the differences between them to entertain political correctness at the cost lives is wrong, no matter how you try to justify it.

(G) The trouble, as I see it, is that (in Britain at least), we’re not allowed to “exclude” people based on gender (as well as height, race, and anything else you can think of).

Now, what I mean by this, is that if we were to allow women into the teeth arms, they would not be held to the same standard as the men – They already aren’t in the UK armed forces, as it would be deemed to be excluding most women if they raised their standards to the same as the men.

For example, to pass the Personal Fitness Assessment, a Male in the British Army has to perform 44 press ups, 50 sit ups and under 10:30 1.5 mile run (2.4km). A female has to do 21 press ups, 50 sit ups and a 13 minute 1.5 mile run.

So…Do I think women should be allowed in the teeth arms?

Yes, I think they should be allowed to do any role provided that they are held to the same standards as their male colleagues. What I fear is that this would not be (and indeed, is not) the case.

SUMMARY

Here I close with Baba’s teaching. I definitely support women’s rights and actually volunteer in a women’s shelter to advance this cause. But when it comes to the physical plane, we should recognise obvious and inherent differences between males and females. Our girls should not fight on the front lines nor be engaged in works far from familial responsibilities. Baba is quite clear about this.

“It must be accepted that the physical bodies and nervous systems of women are not as strong as those of men, so men and women cannot work in identical areas.” (6)

Namaskar,
Madhurii

Note 1: LINK TO THE PREVIOUS LETTER

#1: http://am-global-01.blogspot.com/2013/01/harmful-competition.html

REFERENCES:

1. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
2. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
3. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
4. Caryacarya 1, “Social Relationship between Men and Women”
5. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
6. Human Society – 1, Social Justice

Read Full Post »

Date: 29 Jan 2013 06:27:44 -0000
From: “Madhurii”
To: am-global@earthlink.net
Subject: Re: Harmful Competition #2

Baba

== RE: HARMFUL COMPETITION ==

~ Part 2 ~

(Note: This is the second letter in this series. A link to the initial posting on this topic is appended below. – Eds)

Namaskar,
“After years of heated debate and public pressure, the Pentagon (US military headquarters) lifted the ban and gave approval for women to fight on the front lines of the battlefield. In some western nations like the US, this has been a critical issue. Yes, women were allowed to serve in the military. No, they were not intentionally put in dangerous combat zones. Now – at least in the US – that has all changed. Over time, female soldiers will be put in positions of direct combat.

Event then the debate continues: Some women state that women should not be put in harm’s way on the front lines, while a very vocal group of women is demanding that women must be given the right to fight on the front lines and battle the enemy face to face.

In our Ananda Marga, we have our stand based on Baba’s teachings. As we know, males and females have different physical characteristics and capacities. In particular, males are also physically stronger than females.

Baba says, “”There are people who, in the name of giving equal rights to women in all spheres of life, want them to engage in heavy physical and mental labour which is unsuitable for them. Such an outlook is deplorable. It must be accepted that the physical bodies and nervous systems of women are not as strong as those of men, so men and women cannot work in identical areas. Apart from this, for physical reasons women cannot work in the same way every day of the month, and during pregnancy and the post-delivery period the ability to work strenuously is severely restricted. These points must not be overlooked.” (1)

“As in the societies of most other species, in human society also females are physically weaker than males. Because their nervous systems are weaker, their minds are also slightly weak. Nevertheless women have no less value in human society than men. Selfish men, however, have disregarded the value of women; they have taken full advantage, and are continuing to take full advantage, of their weakness. Although men have publicly declared that women should be respected as the mothers of society, they have actually relegated them to the status of domestic cattle and sheep.” (2)

“The physical and mental structure of a woman is such that even though she may have all the requisite ability to take care of her children, it is extremely difficult for her to bring them up properly and to adequately provide for food, clothing, education and medical care all alone; at the same time she has to keep her children with her or near her, or else it becomes difficult for the children to survive. Therefore if men, instead of women, take the main responsibility for providing food and clothing, while women, after duly attending to the needs of the children, where possible or in cases of necessity earn money by working either at home or outside, neither the children nor society will be adversely affected in any way.” (3)

“As the physical strength of women is less than that of men, the latter should always endeavour to save the prestige of women…Special attention should be paid to the comforts of women during festivals, at spiritual conferences, and on other occasions.” (4)

Furthermore, because males are stronger that is why games and sports are done separately: Women compete against women and men compete against men.

Clearly then females do not have the physical strength & stamina that males have. So less physical strength is a critical reason we do not support the recent decision to allow women to fight on the front lines.”

PERSONAL REFLECTIONS

As a woman I read this and must admit I fully support all the points and views expressed. As a sadhaka, it is quite evident that the male and female bodies differ and that we should not compete with one another on the plane of physicality. It is just not appropriate. I definitely do not wish for my daughters to fight on the front lines – nor be part of the armed forces.

Baba has clearly defined specific roles for women and it is quite clear we should not be competing with men for stature in the military, nor involved in long deployments in far away lands while their children remain at home, nor engaging in arduous physical tasks that are more befitting a man.

BABA HAS BEAUTIFULLY DEFINED THE ROLE OF WOMEN

Here again is Baba’s teaching:

“The physical and mental structure of a woman is such that even though she may have all the requisite ability to take care of her children, it is extremely difficult for her to bring them up properly and to adequately provide for food, clothing, education and medical care all alone; at the same time she has to keep her children with her or near her, or else it becomes difficult for the children to survive. Therefore if men, instead of women, take the main responsibility for providing food and clothing, while women, after duly attending to the needs of the children, where possible or in cases of necessity earn money by working either at home or outside, neither the children nor society will be adversely affected in any way.” (3)

ABOUT THE BELOW ARTICLES AND COMMENTS

Below are two moving pieces:
(1) The first is an article from a British war veteran who was the first female to fight on the front lines in the English army.
(2) The second is a collection of public comments about this issue.

I think you will find all of the below quite meaningful and relevant to this discussion.

ARTICLE BY A WOMAN MILITARY OFFICER:

Why Women Should Not Be On The Front Line
by Major Judith Webb

07 April 2007

Major Judith Webb no longer believes women should be at the front line. Major Judith Webb was the first woman to command an all-male field force squadron in the British Army. She retired in 1986 and became headmistress of an independent girls’ school in Somerset. She now runs a children’s nursery.

As the person who in 1982 became the first female army officer to lead men into the field, you might think I would be the last to say the front line is no place for women. But my views have changed since the 19 years I spent in the Army, first as an ambitious second lieutenant and later as a squadron commander.

So even though I was as pleased as anyone to see the pictures of Faye Turney reunited with her small daughter and husband, my first thought was that she should never have been put in the position from which she was captured in the first place.

I no longer believe that we should send women to the front line – by which I mean somewhere they might find themselves in hand-to-hand combat, or cast as aggressors.

Why not? Well, it may not be fashionable but it’s time that society accepted the simple fact that women are different.

Not, please note, inferior, but different physiologically, mentally and emotionally to men and there are some roles for which we are simply not suited. Yes, we may be capable of incredible mental and physical toughness, but there is no getting away from the fact that we are the more compassionate sex; instinctively more nurturing and lacking the thirst for aggression that drives our male counterparts.

During my army days (serving in Germany and Cyprus with the 1st Squadron, 28th Signal Regiment), soldiers would frequently tell me they were keen to go to a war zone – that’s what they’d joined up for.

They were desperate to serve in Northern Ireland and relished the prospect of a skirmish. Not, they would always add, that they would ever admit such sentiments to their wives. By contrast, the women I encountered seemed to enjoy their job despite, rather than because of, the possibility that they might be put in danger.

As the Ministry of Defence pointed out in a document on women in the Armed Forces, their “capacity for aggression was generally lower” and they “required more provocation and were more likely to fear consequences of aggressive behaviour”.

It’s my belief that women with children find it difficult to operate as soldiers in dangerous circumstances. Their priority is all too often for the son or daughter they will leave motherless if they are killed.

Fortunately for me, I deliberately waited until I had left the Army at the age of 37 to have my first child, so I was never placed in the difficult situation.

But the strong emotional ties of motherhood cannot be underestimated. All this makes women less effective than the men with whom they stand on the battlefield.

And the consequences to a fighting unit which must be tightly focused are potentially catastrophic. The mere presence of women also has a dramatic effect on the ability of men to be combat soldiers, as has been proved in those situations around the world where female soldiers serve on the front line.

For example, when a soldier sees a female colleague lying injured, he immediately feels his first duty must be to protect her rather than to stick to the military plan.

We must also accept, as we do in the world of sport, that women’s bodies are engineered differently and this puts us at a disadvantage in a situation which can test you to the limit of your physical endurance.

Even in Israel, where they have conscription for single women, female soldiers rarely serve in front line units. A medical study carried out in 2003 showed that they could carry less weight than men and it’s not physically possible for them to march as far.

Contrast that with the way our armed forces have responded to the introduction of women. An officer I knew told me he was horrified when, for the sake of gender “equality”, the physical demands on men entering the Army were actually reduced.

Just imagine the impact on a unit in the field, which can only ever be as strong as its weakest link.

There is another vital consideration, one that has been demonstrated dramatically over the course of this week, and that is the propaganda advantage we hand our enemies when we place young British women in a vulnerable position.

The response of the public to the news that there was a mother of a three-year-old child among the 15 hostages showed that however much we pretend otherwise, we are not capable of viewing a vulnerable female in the same way as her male counterparts.

Our reaction to her plight handed the Iranians enormous leverage for pressing home their publicity victory.

So what role can women fulfil? Despite the death of two women in Basra on Thursday, there is still room for women in a war zone, but it should always be in a place where they are not likely to be engaged in combat.

Women are particularly suited to work in intelligence positions. It’s a field that comes with its own set of dangers but we are well-suited to it.

I worked in intelligence for seven years and think women have more patience and can be better at analysing fine details.

They can be incredibly useful working as nurses with a support unit, delivering supplies, and in other logistics roles – much as the Wrens did during World War II.

The Army is a great career for many women. But let’s not pretend that it should treat them in exactly the same way as men.

PUBLIC COMMENTS ON THIS ISSUE

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/18.398195-Poll-Women-In-Front-Line-Combat-Role?page=1

Here below are 7 meaningful comment from common people on this issue of whether women should fight on the front lines in military battle.

(A) I don’t think women belong in front-line infantry units. They aren’t the same as men, physically or psychologically. Women and men do not compete against each other in singles tennis, football, rugby, sprinting or other athletics and so on, because of the physical differences.

…the overwhelming majority of women are physically smaller and weaker than the overwhelming majority of men. As such, they will have a greater chance of losing their lives on the front lines than their male counterparts, and further, endangering their unit and mission.

There is also the issue of sexual attraction, hormones…Lack of privacy and so on…the same reasons women do not serve aboard submarines. Months away from partners and the world, there would be sex, unwanted pregnancies… Further, the menstrual cycle and fluctuating hormones /emotions women experience monthly.

(B) ..We’re talking a one-digit percentage of the female population that would fit the bill, and not all of them are interested in a frontline-experience military career. And then there’s still the risk of having an unstable psycho or two amongst the chosen few, which would drop the number of prospects even lower…the frontlines are not the best place for social experiments.

(C) Well as someone who joins the military next week I would say no purely on the grounds of the fitness issue. Currently to get into the military the female fitness standards are lower than the males and when I did the fitness test I don’t think any of the females there would have been able to reach the required standards for males. The standards also go up once you are a part of the military and are even higher for combat units so even if they were allowed to try I would think all of them would fail.

(D) Until recently, the US Marine Corps had very different judgment lines for men and women seeking to enlist, and to pass the CFT and PFT. One of the big differences was that male Marines had to perform actual pull-ups, while female Marines had to do a flexed arm hang. I learned recently that the Corp is actually changing this so that both sexes have to do full pull-ups,

(E) There is also the problem of women being potentially incapable of helping a fallen male soldier in infantry units. She may simply not be strong or big enough to haul 350lbs (say 250 for the guy and another 80-100lbs of gear) of dead weight out of the line of fire.

(F) only the tiniest, tiniest percentage of women would ever be able to meet the physical requirements that males do in order to qualify to be a front line infantryman…Seeing women being badly maimed and killed has a devastating psychological affect on male soldiers. It is biological, undeniable, and would compromise effective military decision making on the front lines. It would cause male soldiers to hesitate and cost lives. I’m all for equality of all peoples but ignoring the differences between them to entertain political correctness at the cost lives is wrong, no matter how you try to justify it.

(G) The trouble, as I see it, is that (in Britain at least), we’re not allowed to “exclude” people based on gender (as well as height, race, and anything else you can think of).

Now, what I mean by this, is that if we were to allow women into the teeth arms, they would not be held to the same standard as the men – They already aren’t in the UK armed forces, as it would be deemed to be excluding most women if they raised their standards to the same as the men.

For example, to pass the Personal Fitness Assessment, a Male in the British Army has to perform 44 press ups, 50 sit ups and under 10:30 1.5 mile run (2.4km). A female has to do 21 press ups, 50 sit ups and a 13 minute 1.5 mile run.

So…Do I think women should be allowed in the teeth arms?

Yes, I think they should be allowed to do any role provided that they are held to the same standards as their male colleagues. What I fear is that this would not be (and indeed, is not) the case.

SUMMARY

Here I close with Baba’s teaching. I definitely support women’s rights and actually volunteer in a women’s shelter to advance this cause. But when it comes to the physical plane, we should recognise obvious and inherent differences between males and females. Our girls should not fight on the front lines nor be engaged in works far from familial responsibilities. Baba is quite clear about this.

“It must be accepted that the physical bodies and nervous systems of women are not as strong as those of men, so men and women cannot work in identical areas.” (6)

Namaskar,
Madhurii

Note 1: LINK TO THE PREVIOUS LETTER

#1: http://am-global-01.blogspot.com/2013/01/harmful-competition.html

REFERENCES:

1. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
2. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
3. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
4. Caryacarya 1, “Social Relationship between Men and Women”
5. Human Society – 1, Social Justice
6. Human Society – 1, Social Justice

Read Full Post »