Re: theos-l digest: September 24, 1999
Sep 30, 1999 05:17 AM
by Bart Lidofsky
> Grigor wrote:
> >Maybe the only thing statistics finds is more statistics. Maybe its
> >in modern world that isn' t what it used to be. In old country, it involves
> >almost whole village as in-laws, cousins, and relatives of one degree or
> Well, again, even in the "old days" marriage still proved an early death
> for most women. Spousal abuse is not a modern phenomenon - having one's
> family around usually kept a women in her place, rather than serving as a
> woman's advocate.
Are you trying to say that this was the rule rather than the exception?
If so, I would like to see your sources; if not, then I do not
understand the relevancy.
> >But basically,
> >such sayings mean you can't choose your life circumstances, so learn from
> >and that a single day out of your life reveals much about your life.
> I understand; however, we can choose some of our life's circumstances -
> today, unlike the past, both males and females in Western society can
> freely choose to marry or not. Women have yet to gain that right in some
> Islamic countries.
The tight control of women as opposed to men in the West is actually a
relatively recent phenomenon, dating back only about 3-400 years
(before, women and men tended to be equally controlled). In the United
States, it was never the rule, although it did appear sporadically,
especially in wealthy urban areas. (In spite of "Gone With The Wind"
imagery, in the "Old South", the business end of the plantations was
typically the job of the women, not the men, the latter going out in the
fields to supervise the day-to-day operations. The slave system was
equal opportunity oppression to both genders).
> them (husband, wife, children, dog, cat, bird). If a man can learn
> patience in a marriage, but it requires a woman (or a male partner if he is
> gay) to endure abuse while the individual learns the lesson of patience,
> well, to me, this avenue is the wrong one.
That's a big "if".
> Now, specifically about my complaint about the quote (not you personally):
> As a woman, I so tire of writings, be them political, spiritual, cultural,
> theosophical, that tend to revolve around the perspectives of men.
Can you give a few examples? And if you define "revolving around the
perspectives of men" solely by who is doing the writing, then all you
have to do to remedy the situation is to write from your own
> frequently the most accepted and often quoted statements do not really
> apply to women's lives and their circumstances. It continues to amaze me
> that Theosophy, which was "founded" by a woman, managed to form itself into
> a male-oriented and male-dominated philosophy - especially since the
> existence of the Gigantic males of theosophy (the Mahatmas) hasn't been
The Mahatmas claim that they can choose whether to incarnate as male or
female. The Mahatmas chose, at the time, to come mostly as men because
of societal reasons. They made it clear that they did and do come as
women when the circumstances warrant it; I would assume that in today's
society, there are more female Mahatma's than in previous times.
> The only "expert" we know of for sure in Theosophy is a female. I
> guess we, as a society, would rather place possible imaginary males in the
> "highest" of positions then a real, poke-with-a-stick female. Perhaps HPB
> knew more about current human psychology than we give her credit for. . ..
Or maybe that is how the Mahatmas felt.
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