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Karva Chauth, the patriarchal bullshit!

Members of Aspiration Ladies Club celebrating Karva Chauth at Chandigarh Club on Oct 26 (4)

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The pictures are from the celebration of Karva Chauth. Karva Chauth is celebrated by Hindu women who fast from sunrise to moonrise for the safety and longevity of their husbands.

Once the moon is visible, it is customary for a fasting woman, with her husband nearby, to view its reflection in a vessel filled with water, through a sieve, or through the cloth.Water is offered to the moon (the lunar deity) to secure its blessings. She then turns to her husband and views his face indirectly in the same manner. It is believed that at this stage, spiritually strengthened by her fast, the woman can successfully confront and defeat death. The husband now takes the water from the thali and gives his wife her first sip and feeds her with the first morsel of the day.

There is no Karva Chauth for men to celebrate. Men do not fast from sunrise to moonrise for the safety and longevity of their wives. Men are not the equal partners of women, they are literally the masters of their wives in patriarchal societies. In India, not only illiterate hopeless women dependent on their husbands celebrate Karva Chauth, well educated, independent women also celebrate it.

But seriously, women must stop celebrating misogynistic, masochistic, sexist, repressive, stupid patriarchal bullshit called Karva Chauth. And men must stop treating themselves as masters, they must treat women as equal human beings.

Comments

  1. wtfwhateverd00d says

    “The husband now takes the water from the thali and gives his wife her first sip and feeds her with the first morsel of the day.”

    Uh, if you want to demonstrate the patriarchal horrors and misogyny of Karva Chauth, the photographs you chose and the text you quote are pretty weak tea. Together, your chosen photographs and your quoted text paint a picture of a community’s beautiful and heartwarming tradition celebrating a couple.

    • NoNoNo says

      Did you read the part where it explains the meaning of the ritual? Because that’s the part that should hit you, together with the pictures it shows how deep and accepted as normal is misogyny in India.
      Don’t cherry pick parts of the text to shield yourself from its reality.

  2. wtfwhateverd00d says

    Misogyny and masochistic typically connote images of hatred and pain: brutal pictures of beatings would be ugly but would get that imagery across. Pictures of smiling women, beautifully bedecked in colorful and traditional clothes of their choice, not really.

    I mean, if misogyny and masochism is voluntarily fasting in order to celebrate your partner, well, bring it on.

    Perhaps the opposite of Karva Chauth would not be as you suggest to stop it, but to have a celebration in which men honor their wives.

    • Maria de Lourdes says

      my dear,if you didn´t understand: the pics show how we women are also sexist.We accepeted sexist traditions with a smile in our faces.An other exemple? Rio´s carnival,full filled with half-naked women,smiling for the cameras,showing the world how slutish we brazillian women are.And that´s considered natural! Misogyny is not just explicit violence,it´s also the traditions that teach us women to treat men like gods,to accept all their violences as natural and always forgive them for that.This is as cruela as explict violence.

  3. says

    Beside this Karva Chauth , there are so many vows for women. They celebrate these for the same purpose that is for the safety and longevity of their husbands. These bullshits were created by men and women have been celebrating for many ages. How amazing that the educated women have also been celebrating these nonsense practices ! The educated men of the modern society should have the moral duty to oppose such nonsense and unscientific practices to eliminate these from the society for ever. But they do not take any initiative. Not only that, they would take part in these customs and enjoy. I feel shame for these educated men and women.

    • PKPKPKKS says

      traditions are made with a reason. With science and new technology people are going far away from religion but once you discover the answer you will know its importance. A object is worth million to a person who know its true price otherwise it is just a piece of crap. Think about it and try to find answer about it before commenting.

  4. NotYou says

    This festival is just the show of women to their husband and many other at home that they really care for their husband. But real fact situation is little different & women are ahead of Men too. Becouse they almost all day knight at bedtime torture or threats their own husband to be able to get more & more things they want to live lifestyle more attractively than their husband can afford. Some times they give threat of divorse if their wishes are not fulfilled. So these things conclude neither mysoginy nor Matrileange. These are simply women ruling things. I personaly feel sorry for those poor Men. But not too much feminists care for the sorrow of those Men. This is not equality.

      • Malo says

        Same to you, Niharka, but Notyou’s pathetic comment deserved a pathetic reply

        “Becouse they almost all day knight at bedtime torture or threats their own husband to be able to get more & more things they want to live lifestyle more attractively than their husband can afford.”

        Hey, Niharka, do you wish to defend this little fantasy? Do you have anything to add.

    • Maria de Lourdes says

      didn´t know the stupid MRAs were allowed to post here…their pathetic speech about men´s oppression…disgusting their lack of empathy,i hope one day to be a MRA will be considered a crime,like to be a neo-nazi.

  5. UJJAL says

    All the atrocities are always in disguise of beautiful dressing / decoration and social involvement. The happy involvement covers the dirty side of inequality and makes only the hindu woman to remain in fasting and pray for husbands good health and long life. The hindu men have NO need to ask similar for their wives.

    There is a close similar function in hindus again coming up shortly called ‘bhai phonta’ ( bhai duhj ). The sister performs ritual and prays in presence of the brother for the long life of brother, the brother NEVER does that.

    Purely misogynistic for the non-earning woman who depend on alms the husband throw at her at times.
    For the earning woman it is a social status to maintain and pretend how much she loves her. The comparatively earning and learned woman longs for husbands life to continue to enjoy his protection and wealth for a longer time, simple.

  6. UJJAL says

    @ erection – We are all born out of a woman only. Even the whore is a mother most of the times and you need a good mental hospital for a long time if not for lifetime.

  7. UJJAL says

    @ Not You – this leads to some other topic. During marriage when men remain quiet and a good boy while the father negotiates the dowry forgets that he has to keep, feed and maintain for lifetime the pack of flesh he brings home along with the dowry in cash and property and car and honeymoon and his banyan and undergarment and every damn thing squeezed out of the girls father. Here the girl also in most cases enjoys the extortion for her parents as well as the husband.

    Here the topic was on Karva Chauth. A clear inequality embedded in hindu religion against the women alone. We can debate this topic whether it is correct or misogynistic.

  8. Barkha Gupta says

    Those who feel that a true custom ( not a custom of course) is a bullshit should go and get themselves checked by some good psychiatrist. They really need one.

    Being a women, independent a working professional I don’t feel that this is some kind of misogyny or any vow that was foisted on us. Rather, now a days, it is a symbol that gives value time for husband and wife to spend time rather then other festivals.

    “These bullshits were created by men and women have been celebrating for many ages. How amazing that the educated women have also been celebrating these nonsense practices !”………. I am afraid with the such thinking. Our religion is allowing us in different manner to show our love and respect. As far as men are concerned for observing this fast, I know many of them who equally observe fast on the said day, giving equal respect to their wives. If we talk about misfortune and things being imposed upon women how can the writer forget that there is one more culture which is being followed not just in India but of course throughout world and that is marriage of small girls with the person four times of their age. The SHEIKS as we all know, how much they are fond of human flesh.

    Besides, getting kids every year and if not able to give birth, men of same society marry his wife’s sister and the practice continues. Is this not a sign of women hatred and a misfortune for women. Answer it!

    Last @ Erection, I do agree with Mr. Ujjal that he badly need a doctor for his mental condition. Writing such words and that too for women.. may be unknowingly he forget that throughout all women his mother, his sister, his wife and possibly his daughter all get involved.

    So please think twice before making such comment.

  9. NoOneInNorOut says

    Ok, let us consider for instance these are mysoginy & all occations related to any religion are mysoginistic. So these all should not be accepted by religion free India. But Very few are accepted acording to our so called feminist where equal preference is given to all. And of course, women should be on top i,e over MEN. Then the question arises how people will survive, especially illetarate or less educated people or the people who are educated but behave like evil due to lack of moral knowledge of religion? They should be given a new religion based on science & equality. Who will give it to them? Our so called feminist have that power to establish a new religion which is free from mysoginy? I don’t think our so called feminist can do that. Because critisising is easy. Realy doing something is not on everyones capacity. And the last thing is that giving women all the power in society is also not equality. On the other hand in mysoginy society too maximum women rulling.

  10. jayati das says

    it is not about just bullying some ones religious views, it is the question of interpretations….to understand the ritual of Karwa Chauth, we should know firstly, why is it celebrated….long long ago, when the rajput men went for battles, they returned in this time of the year.the women chose this day to have fast for their husbands safe return, and by seeing him drank the first sip of water from him……in modern times, no man go for warring in battlefields, but people definitely live a stressed life throughout the year, so whats the harm if the wife counts a day to fast, and pray to God for her husbands well being??!!….i know many loving husbands also choose to remain in fast along with his wife, and drink water from her after praying to the moon god,…whats the harm in it??…please stop mocking the peoples faith and learn to absorb the good thoughts hidden behind each custom.

  11. Dhirender says

    Who is writing this, a muslim, where woman is treated like crap. would suggest to look into your insight before commenting on hindu customs. Our women are better off than most of the Muslim countries.

    Between, it is not forced on women, it is by choice. To bring the right picture, many men have starting doing this out of respect for their wives.

  12. UJJAL says

    Hindus used gather in mass and commit ‘sati’ murder . Not long ago, should be still fresh in Indian minds about Roop Kanwar committing suicide in Rajasthan. She did it willingly was the final verdict accepted in High Court.

    The moral is all the religious acts done by women / human is NOT A WELCOME romantic performance. Not in the past, not in present Roop Kanwar incident either.
    History does not support a single ‘male sati’ committed to love a wife. Men fasting to return love to wife is sure a fashion ( i never heard from any of my male friends )

    The cruelty of religion is hidden behind good dress, romance, etc for men to enjoy one sided.

    Could be an interesting information for those who do not know – Muslim samrat Aurangzeb was the FIRST to impose a law against ‘sati’. The cruelty of hindu religion even touched a cruel Aurangzeb from no less cruel muslim religion.

    • Dushyant Chauhan says

      @Mr. UJJAL I am totally against any barbaric against anyone not just women. I respect your thoughts and views but you are historically wrong here. Sati was never there in ancient India (I am talking about 2nd century and before) and now its being totally abolished for humanities sake . It was when the Islamic Invaders arrived that compelled the women to commit suicide of a certain kingdom or region when all of the men had been decimated in the war. Women chose to set themselves afire instead of rotting like a prostitute in some Islamic Harem because they were slaves. Unfortunately this practice then became the norm for the Hindu society. The practice was called Jauhar(Mass Sati). I belong to the Rajput Community and it was our ancestors who stopped India from falling into barbaric hands. They must have taken our forts but could never break our spirits. The last nail to the coffin of this myth that sati was ingrained in the Hindu Soceity was put by christian missionaries that came with their conversion propoganda. Ancient Hindu society was a society which was a society where women were free to express their sexuality and were treated equally. Unfortunately this is not the case now and we all must work into this direction to create an equal environment.

      And I am shocked, as a guardian for humanity you are gave an example of Aurangzeb my friend who destroyed thousands of temples, killed lakhs of people, imposed Jiziya and then abolished Sati….WHAT GREAT SHOW OF HUMANITY!!!!!! Matlab sau chuhe khakar billi chali haj karne…………

  13. UJJAL says

    Dr Taslima is not a muslim. People who learn through ears become believers after hearing from their parents and society. only in some opportunity cases they care to read chosen portions of their own religious books and form distorted imaginary beliefs.

    If one reads their own religious books carefully ( prominent ones being muslim, christiean and ofcourse hindu ) and understands the meaning as written in the books, then there are only two choices for a person. Either become a Taliban ( or like ) or become an atheist. There is NO mid way. Religious books do NOT suggest or allow ANY deviation to the followers. So there is no scope of any interpretation, the meaning is straight whatever is WRITTEN. ‘Hindu’ religion somehow enjoys an opportunist role. It does not have any single book to follow. Hindus avidly follow Ramayan, mahabharat, manu samhita and gita. Politics, telling lies, family back biting, war with kins, murder, sexual provocation, sexual abuse, stealing, etc are together or in parts INTEGRATED part of ALL these mentioned books. You either have a choice to become a believer or an atheist.

  14. Barkha Gupta says

    Here, I do agree with Ms. Jayati Das and Mr. Dhirender. Our Hindu culture, if have given some restriction for women, then at times there are restrictions for men too. At many rituals men are completely out. Whereas In several parts of the world it was observed that women from other religion are living a miserable life. At least we are free at our home. We are not supposed to scare of our own brothers / cousins / uncles / and other father figures of getting raped.

    I just want to request the writer that if she is not aware of the actual reason behind our customs, she should go and check with a female who is observing such rituals and is happy from the core of her heart. Complaining is human nature so its obvious that in case among us any of the feminine gets treated badly that doesn’t mean that all the women society is suffering. Exceptions are always there.

    In us it is only our elders who made us free from “VEIL” concerning the change in time and values of society, but still everyone is witnessing that in the UAE the custom of VEIL is strictly followed or otherwise the women is punished brutally.

    @NoOneInNorOut .. I must say that feeling of equality comes from within. Its true that revolution can change the world, but imagining a society and i.e. religion free is impossible. Religion is not just a remark to mention, its a feeling, its like a sense of breath that is must for everybody. Of course you would say that humanity is bigger then Religion… True! It is! but if you just consider for humanity then you cannot judge women or men alone. Misfortune an be with any human and in any manner.

    I am not here to argue for all this stuff, I was just purely against the remarks given by the writer. She is of course no body to comment on the emotions of anybody. She should remember if she is pointing out a finger to us, rest of the fingers are pointing herself. Be careful.

  15. UJJAL says

    It is easier to fool intelligent people with religion than to convince the intelligent that they are being fooled.

    That is the crisis with humanists today. The crisis are not the religious books leading to religious careerists and further leading to religious fanatics.

  16. UJJAL says

    @ Mr Dusyant – I wish you had given some research evidence in support of your claim. Naturally I will not accept Hindu blogs written by modern learned personalities from RSS or other Hindu associations. Ok, let me give only FEW evidence in support of what I said as follows :

    1. Mention of Sati is in Padma Purana dated around 10th century. Brahmins were forbidden from the practice ( for obvious reasons ) whereas for Khastrias it was a nobe act…blah blah… ( source :- Doniger, Wendy (2009). The Hindus: An Alternative History. Penguin Books. page 611 )

    2. After the islamic invation, Humayun and Akbar were against Sati. Aurangzeb, in December 1663, he issued an “order that in all lands under Mughal control, never again should the officials allow a woman to be burnt”
    ( source :- Chapter XVII. “Economic and Social Developments under the Mughals” from Muslim Civilization in India by S. M. Ikram edited by Ainslie T. Embree New York: Columbia University Press, 1964. This page maintained by Prof. Frances Pritchett, Columbia University. The British law was much later imposed and more effective.
    Earlier evidence to stop Sati is welcome.

    3. In my above post no 14, I wrote :- ” The cruelty of hindu religion even touched a cruel Aurangzeb from no less cruel muslim religion. ” I did mention Aurangzeb was cruel, I did mention muslim religion is cruel.

    I will not be interested in some hearsay stories coming down generations through various communities ( naturally I do not mean any offence to your Rajput community AT ALL ) and claiming to be true and fact in modern times. If hearsay is to be taken as truth then the claim by sunni muslims to have heard the quran direct from allah is also to be considered true ! Alas we will have to pack up all evidences and depend on too many hearsay claims.

  17. UJJAL says

    @ Mr Dushyant – Forgot to mention one more point.

    What I understtod you meant is that to avoid the terrible misery under the muslim invaders the women considered better to burn themselves alive than to remain alive and bear the misery lifelong.

    I very straight accept that may also be true in cases. There is a big BUT. There is no relation with this kind of attempt with ‘Sati.’

    ‘Sati’ was commited with ONLY MARRIED women, after husbands death.

    Did the muslims only torture married women ? Any evidence ?
    Did any un-married woman commit ‘Sati’ ? Any evidence ?

  18. Dushyant Chauhan says

    @Mr. Ujjal first of all calm down…..

    Now:
    1. So you did your research after one day….eh….:P but let me tell you not even after a thousand debates will I be able to tell you dates and chapters. I learn history so as to learn from it and not just learn dates and I have a bad memory. So I quote sentences which are from books and don’t exactly remember the chapters.
    2. There is no point in murderers and dacoits being touched or untouched by a custom(here Aurangzeb). I read what you mentioned and understood it but to be honest I thought it to be an emotional tantrum….sorry if I offend you…..you were like “Even Aurangzeb” “Even Aurangzeb” as it was out of his behaviour to be cruel…..
    3. I quoted Jauhar which isn’t exactly Sati but it can be considered as one. do your research and why did it happen. I really couldn’t understand what you wrote. I quote again that Sati was a not a practice it was bloody sin against humanity. And it was karva chauth being thrashed here I don’t know why sati came in.
    4. Ordering an order and following that order are two different things. The muslim history is not only the mughals it goes beyond and before that. 30000 peasents were killed by akbar during the sack of chittaurgarh. Jahangir desecrated many temples.
    4. By quoting wendy doniger you again quoted a bad example….she has been criticised by many scholars and her theories are accepted only by the naive.
    5. Not even a bit I felt you insulted the Rajput Community but what I mentioned are “absolutely not heresays”. There are many books like the Annals and Antiquities of Rajasthan and The royal Rajputs which are about the courage and devotion of warriors who fell protecting this land and the hindu religion. I have read only these if you find some more just tell me.
    6. And you won’t take anything that is pro hindu and from learned RSS personalities and that too “naturally” which is again fine but then why should I take something from someone who is anti hindu and communist mentality??

    According to me the problem is not aethism or theism the problem lies in the absolutism…..which is-“Only I am correct rest is bullshit”. There will be believers and there will be non believers we can only coexist with each other. There are two only things- Co-Existence and No Existence. I hope people understand. Period.

  19. mamdhata says

    I read the blogs and comments on the blogs. In the first instance, no Hindu religious rites – be sacrifices puja or charity may be done without wife. Any one is a widower or whose has divorced his wife may sacrifice (yajna/havana) or punja or offer donations (dana). Observance of these religious deeds brings in merit.

    2nd: Our of these religious and charitable observations, 1/5th of the merit goes to one’s own guru and 1/5th goes the king. Out of remaining 3/5th – 50% of the religious merit earned by a man automatically goes to the wife – whether or not she has actively or passively participated in them. These include for instance ekadashi fasts, or new moon day fasts which is done for God and for parents respectively. On the contrary, any religious deed done by a woman, the merits that accure, accures to her solely. At the end of the day if one were to see, a wife ends-up with more religious merit than a man generally.

    BTW, women generally tend to live longer than men – clearly by 10 or 15 years more than their partners. So the above description as patriarchial, or matriarchial bull shit is just stupid and ignorance

  20. UJJAL says

    @ Mr Dusyant – Professionally I am a simple worker struggling to earn for livelihood for me and family. I do not have the luxury to respond to all communication daily basis, generally. Two points are clear from your last post :-

    1. You have capacity to predict also that I took a day for research. Believers do predict beliefs. Criticism is most welcome on any person or issue, and good to know that at least you did not challenged with counter evidence research by Wendy.

    2. Fantastic point raised by you in your point no 6. We only harp to request believers PLEASE judge based on evidence and scientific proofs. Do NOT believe atheist / communist books AND religious books. You will find in this page other members beliefs in even apportioning the percentage of merit being earned from religious believes as dividend distributed among stakeholders in the religious business.

    I am happy to repeat my point no 18, which I as a labor class citizen learnt through experience.

  21. Dushyant Chauhan says

    @Mr. UJJAL Now I am really laughing…

    Sir from your reply I can only predict one thing that you are senior to me as you have your own family…..You got me wrong that I predicted anything about you….I was simply teasing you nothing more……and and and even I am professionally a simple laborer…My shifts are sometimes 14 hours long but I took out time just to respond……I am a common man who is also learning and earning through experience….and what is good if I did not challenge wendy…this entire blog is based on challenging each other….who defines good and bad??….I would challenge wendy but when I’ll have the evidence as “I am really busy with my work these days”….

    One thing I would like to say….A few decades ago Yoga was mocked at and now it is being followed in the entire world…..so its not necessary that a thing that someone can’t prove in his or her lifetime might necessarily be untrue or it has be true just because someone “believes”…..”Time” proves and gets things right…..The were no MRI machines or CT scans for that matter in that time but still such eligent relation between various senses of the body was established……

    “Believers do predict beliefs” just like “unbelievers do not predict beliefs”…..they just believe not to predict….anyway my profession is related to science and I have work to do…..gtg….

  22. Csoar says

    I am struck by the number of commenters missing the point of the post. This rather underlines Taslima’s point.
    Karva Chauth is an example of misogyny precisely because it is the female fasting and praying for the male. It is an example of religion participating in the suppression, the sublimation of women. For Karva Chauth to NOT be a misogynistic ritual, both marriage partners would fast in honor of each other. Until that happens, Karva Chauth is misogyny in practice.

  23. wtfwhateverd00d says

    @Csoar

    It’s a pretty niggardly form of love that demands a quid-pro-quo, that accounts for every transaction and accumulating the debits and credits. It’s a foolish notion of love to demand each debit be repaid by the exact same form of credit. If I kiss you on the lips, you must kiss me on the lips. If I make you a sammich, you must make me a sammich. If I let you fuck me, you must let me fuck you.

    If tells you she loves you, and you find a different way at a different time to tell her she loves you, it is not misogyny. Even if you were to say nothing, it would not be misogyny.

    For Taslima, a non-Hindu, to say this Hindu custom is misogynistic using the argument in her post seems misguided if not bigotry.

    • Csoar says

      Classic strawman fallacy, d00d.
      1) who said anything about love? Religion does not equal love. Religious rituals don’t, either.
      2) implying that only Hindus can recognize or identify Hindu rituals as sexist, patriarchal, misogyny is disingenuous and completely wrong.
      3) Refusing to recognize that a rose has thorns doesn’t mean they aren’t there.

      Misogyny and masochistic typically connote images of hatred and pain: brutal pictures of beatings would be ugly but would get that imagery across. Pictures of smiling women, beautifully bedecked in colorful and traditional clothes of their choice, not really.

      And just because a well dressed women is smiling doesn’t mean she isn’t dealing with misogynistic sexist bullshit.

  24. Mr. David says

    only a feminazi could find fault with such a beautiful and kind action. This kind of feminism will be the death of feminizim.. keep it up..

  25. Cynic says

    there is no dearth of Indian (Bollywood) films esp. cliched, childish romances and family melodramas which glorify and put up fake sentimentality on this and other retrograde ‘cultural’ bullshit. these are of course meant for parochial minded chattering masses (and not to mention moronic Westerners).

  26. Abhilash says

    So this is how she was banned and banished from West Bengal.
    I am an atheist but if someone is believing and doing something for their happiness WTF is the problem with all the people?. Is their nose that much long?. Mind your own business or may be she will be thinking she knows it all. My ideology is simple learn to help people, they don’t want your advice until they ask you.

    Stupid post but really liked the conversation by Mr.Ujjal and Mr.Dushyant Chauhan lot of learning happened

    @MALO: Get a life. Are you a vampire? Because you sucks big time

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