Tuesday, 22 May 2018

WOMAN IN MODERN INDIA - 1

यतो धर्म: ततो जय:


The saying that Indian regeneration will come through Indian women is growing hackneyed (stale). The words are found on the lips of many who have not troubled to think clearly what they mean. The fact is, by the education of woman we mean today her civilization. The problem of the age, for India, as we have constantly insisted, is to supersede the family, as a motive, and even as a form of consciousness, by the civic and national unity. This cannot be done by men, as men, alone. It is still more necessary that it should be done by women. In all questions of the moral and personal life, woman is a far greater factor than man. In her care lies the synthesis of life. As she determines the character of the home, out of which man goes forth to his day's labour, so also it is her conception of what life as a whole should be that dominates and creates the world. Man is only a clever child; in woman's care and keeping is the well of life. It follows that while man must always take the lead in special departments of activity, it is at the same time of the highest importance that the general scheme of life should be understood by the women of a community, and should not be such as to shock and outrage their sense of right. We all know how important it is to individual happiness that men and women should be in substantial accord, and we can well believe that if a community is to put forth its utmost energy in any given direction, it will be necessary that its men and its women should be combined in the one great effort.

This is our position today. We are determined to initiate new developments. For this, it is essential that we make our own material, and of all our material, none is in this sense so important as the women. A great deal of our nationalizing energy, therefore, has to be given, during the coming years, to making the women of our families more devoted to the country then they are even to their fathers, husbands and brothers, and qualified to judge still better what will serve the welfare of the nation, than as to that of the family. This is all, the essence of the whole matter. It amounts to the reception of a new idea, for our women have not been accustomed to think much of larger areas than the village at utmost. The impingement of new ideas creates enormous energy. It is likely, therefore, that those who are really touched, will show the fact at once, by an eagerness to be taught reading and writing. It is obvious that if they can once read they will be in a position to feed their own national sense for themselves. But many will be too old, or will not have the faculty, to master the new methods of knowledge. Not on this account are any to be passed by.

To be continued........