The Goddess of #MeToo
Diwali! The festival of light is just around the corner. The month before is a period when house cleaning, repairs, renovations become a priority for virtually every God-believing Hindu home. How else can one expect Laxmi, the Goddess of wealth and abundance to visit the abode and bless it for another year.
However, the way the Indian currency, financial and real estate markets are being battered, it does look like she’s on a break of some kind, if not offended. There is a definite fear of her not visiting a single Indian home this year, at least of those who are honest in offering some if not all of their income to the tax authorities for taxing.
Seems like the Gods and Goddesses have had it with their greatest creation — mankind — and take great pleasure in showering untold suffering on to it for the strangest of reasons. To top it, it does not matter which God one prays to, or one believes is superior to the other; the decision to make the entire planet suffer is unanimous. One step further, no specific religion Godkind is inflicting woes on only those that belong to the flock, the punishment is universal, come man, woman, child, animal, tree, water or rock. I wonder then if the Gods have gone so ballistic, what role does the devil have to play anymore? But that is a subject matter for a global debate. In the meantime, the reader may seek proof for this theoretical X-file that I may be creating.
Just a few months back, “God’s Own Country”, as the Indian State of Kerala is called, suffered untold devastation by way of floods. Some wise folks were quick to blame it on the move to allow women into a temple reserved exclusively for men. The rationale for keeping women out has to do with them being deemed “unclean” and therefore unfit to enter during their menstruation period. Since determining that aspect would be very difficult (naturally), a blanket ban on entry at any time was imposed on that gender from some ungodly time.
It is my view that this State will suffer more damage and devastation by the decision of the Supreme Court to allow women into the temple than from the natural calamity it had suffered. For those screaming gender inequality, I, a man have been refused entry into a temple in the same State for refusing to enter bare torso as per the temple dress code. I have suffered a similar indignation in a Balinese temple too for not wearing a ceremonial wrap. I mean, omnipresent Gods have seen me naked, but what has dress code got to do with devotion? I may never get the right answer, as will all the devout Hindu men pleading to the even more devout Hindu women that there are several Goddess oriented temples in India where men are not allowed, either at all, or during the period the presiding deity is menstruating. Yes! even after billions of man-years in age, they still do.
Under normal circumstance, the unquestioning Indian woman has always seen the sun where her man said it was, to the point of even supporting his chauvinistic views on its color. But all of a sudden one can say, that view seems to have changed. Like a pent-up volcano letting off steam before an eruption, the Indian woman has become bold enough to spew some toxic vapor to make every conquistador pretending red-blooded male in this Country introspect on all his — over the years — barroom boasts of what he thought was his fair and rightful conquests. There is a clear signal being sent out on which of the sexes is actually “unclean”. Of course, this whole business of the traditional men fearing women joining hands with their more emancipated western sisters in shouting #metoo is being thought of as a conspiracy started off by some foreign hand with the intent of maligning the name of “Mother India”. How very convenient!
But, you may ask, how is all this connected to the absenteeism of the Goddess of wealth? I would say it’s a rhetoric. The way wealth gets abused in this Nation, She must be screaming #metoo the loudest. On the other hand, maybe #shetoo is “unclean” at the moment, menstruating, and has decided to spare us the piety of our precious homes. Surely, values are more important than wealth, right?
Finally, just a thought! Maybe, the men should construct a Goddess of #metoo where they could go seek forgiveness for their manly sins, just like a dip in the holy river Ganges. Of course, no women allowed #theretoo.
Oh yes! The image up there is of LuxMae, a Goddess of my imaginative creation, least she be confused with the Goddess of Wealth.