Rising number of 'FEMALE PRIESTS' or 'PRIESTESS' for Wedding: Smashing Patriarchy?
“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me”- Ayn Rand
Can we just say, word! India, as a country has been so deep-rooted in its diverse cultural traditions, that sometimes we forget the purpose of it all. For instance, in many households in today’s age too, women are made to isolate themselves while on their period. Sounds blasphemous, unfair, and sexist? But do you dearies know the real reason behind this practice? Folklore and gender roles have it that back in the day; the woman was in charge of all household responsibilities- from fetching water by walking miles afar, to cooking and cleaning, while the male member would financially provide for the family.
Bearing their frustrations and atrocities silently, they did not get time to relax and were always on the go. But those four days in a month were meant for them to just recharge and rest it out. Mankind misconstrued this practical meaning and turned it around completely. As a women-centric platform, each of us gets supercharged up when we talk about anything pertaining to our gender. Today, we’re busily shackling stereotypes, entering male-dominated fields, and succeeding through our sheer perseverance and grit. Let’s take a moment and applaud us all. We deserve it!
While we’re talking about career choices, have you ever encountered the misogynistic claim that ‘engineering is meant for boys; choose a line like teaching, which is more feminine?” Well, sometimes we wonder are some of our parents are entrapped by this mindset or did they just grow up thinking that this is society’s way. On the other hand, we’re lucky to have parents who stand up for us too.
TREND ALERT: of having a FEMALE PRIEST or Priestess
Change comes when we take the first step. In the religious beat, for instance, there has been a long drawn battle about being more inclusive and encouraging female priests or priestesses. Right from the Catholics of Rome protesting against Pope Francis to our Hindu and Islamic women making their presence felt on the home ground, patriarchy is being questioned and smashed. Equality may be a bigger goal, but steps are being taken. Acceptance of the same however is a story for another day.
We may not be aware, but as millennials, we’ve actually existed at a time when a few emboldened women, shattered their own glass ceilings and opted to become priests. Now, don’t get us wrong- we are not talking of women, who have completely denounced the world, giving up all materialistic pleasures and living a simpleton’s life. We are talking of those ordained individuals who are sanctioned to officiate ceremonies such as weddings or naming rituals.
When popular actress, activist, and supporter of several social causes decided to get married for a second time, she already went up and above with her decision. Divorce and remarriage are not alien concepts in our country, but it is somewhat a taboo. Additionally, she created a roaring stir when she chose a renowned priestess, SHEELA ATTA to bind her in holy matrimony with her businessman husband VAIBHAV REKHI. In a beautiful post, she commemorated her new innings, while honouring our kind, stating “Thank you, Sheela Atta, for conducting our wedding ceremony. So proud that together we can #RiseUp #GenerationEquality”. Furthermore, in another heart-warming stance, the couple jointly decided to do away with the ‘kanyadaan’ and the ‘bidaai’ ceremonies. And, we loved it. Dia’s husband surely got lucky, what say?
However, she’s not the only one. In the past, several other couples have taken a step towards smashing the patriarchy. Actor couples like Om Sahani-Mimi Dutta and Twarita Chatterjee-Sourav Banerjee followed suit, and they could not be happier. In fact, one of our team members attended a naming ceremony for her nephew, where an intimate, beautiful ritual was conducted, with every step of the way being helmed and explained by a relative, who has been deep into spirituality and seeking answers through the religious scriptures. And, she definitely couldn’t stop gushing about the impact those hymns and words had on an atheist like her.
Citizens all over the world believe that the way forward is to be more inclusive, tolerant and let women have their dues in leading the way.
Advantages of having a WOMAN PRIEST/ PRIESTESS
1. Since people all around the world, believe in some religion or faith so enormously, it proves to be a great platform to encourage feelings and ideas of gender equality and equal opportunities.
2. Scientifically proven, women tend to connect more emotionally than men. We aren’t saying that the current priests do not conduct ceremonies heartily, but a woman brings with her experiences that a man can never deem of. Yes, fathers, today dote on their little ones, but it a mother who brings life into this world, establishing a deep love even during their pregnancy. Naturally, she is wired to bring more empathy, tenderness, teary rejoice, benediction, and magical energy.
3. It definitely is a pleasant change because we women are marvellously leading the way, both symbolically and literally. When we asked a bride to be her views on the same, she was ecstatic. Inspired to incorporate the same into her fairy tale wedding, she told us that as a young girl, she definitely feels more powerful when she witnesses this. She is lucky to have a supportive spouse and in-laws, but this testament is what she will remember.
4. Feminism is definitely moving along the right path if we, as a society are progressing and being a part of this revolutionary patriarchy chiding movement.
5. To all the religious naysayers, let’s not forget that when God created this world, he designed it in a besotting manner of equanimity. There is no place for discrimination. And ordaining more women as priestess’ will truly be instrumental in changing the game of widespread acceptance.
In conclusion, we’d like to say bravo to all the pro-feminism men. Thank you for treating your better halves the way your mothers and sisters are treated or would like to be treated. If a female Qazi or a Christian priest can ordain a ceremony, they are giving blessings like no one else. After reading this, would you like to be a part of this path-breaking change? We’d love to know your views.