Comments Posted By sita-pati
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O sage, please tell me: Is this presentation based on scripture? Or is it based on the empirical investigation of the asuras, which can verify whether scriptural injunction that are based on time, place, and circumstance are still applicable? Or is it simply a custom of ordinary society?
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 25.01.2013 @ 00:40
I think there are valid points, and limitations, on both sides of this issue. Either way there will be problems, because this is the material world and all endeavours here are coloured by *some* fault. Rather than promoting one way or the other way as “the one true way”, I think it’s important and valuable to be clear about what the drawbacks are, to acknowledge them, and take them into account while moving forward.
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 14.12.2012 @ 00:36
“Women used to be satisfied remaining out of the spotlight.”
Yes! And black people used to know their place too. What is the world coming to? Kali Yuga!
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 12.12.2012 @ 01:13
Sarvopama: that’s a nice idea, but wearing clothes that are flown in from another country (as dhotis, kurtas, and saris are for non-Indian dwellers) goes against that idea. Wearing locally-produced, hand-made clothes would fit that; and those clothes here in Australia are not dhotis and kurtas.
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 16.09.2011 @ 21:13
Wearing clothes that are *different* from everyone else is Prabhupada’s point. The dress that ISKCON devotees wore in the 70s in the West was different from everyone else. Prabhupada’s analogy is instructive. Police uniforms are not objective - they change in different countries, and change at different times. One thing remains the same, however, they are unique and distinctive in their particular time and place. They serve to separate and identify the wearer.
So the argument that millions of people wear dhoti, kurta, and sari in India and are not devotees is tangential. The point is that in the West it is a distinctive garb that is useful for creating a corporate identity (both for the public and the devotees). It’s a tactic.
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 16.09.2011 @ 21:11
Once a disciple of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati insisted to the Math editors that the dictionary by changed rather than a word be corrected in an article written by his spiritual master. His spiritual master appreciated his sentiment, but had the word corrected to the standard spelling.
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 07.09.2011 @ 00:44
… or is it?
This verse seems to describe the 16th century equivalent of “amplified response”:
“SvarÅ«pa DÄmodara was chosen as the leader of the first party and was given five assistants to respond to his chanting.”
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 04.05.2011 @ 03:45
Nowhere in Caitanya-caritamrita do we read of double-voice amplification kirtans. This is clearly a modern concoction and no doubt a product and promoter of sex life.
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 02.05.2011 @ 13:33
Very thought-provoking and well-written article. It makes many good, strong arguments.
One small thing though, at the end it switches focus to start to address “feminization of boys”, to put a label on it. The argument there is not as well-developed or considered as the earlier argument the promoting the adoption of men’s roles is inextricable from devaluing women’s roles.
In the last paragraph you say:”Feminist history answers a lot of questions…like…why teacherās guides refer to the student as a āsheā and no longer a āheā”.
As a professional writer, my understanding is that has evolved in recent times because pronouns in English are gender specific (the vast majority of our other nouns, whether inherited from German or Latin both gendered languages, have lost gender). When writing generically about a group of people of both sexes and referring to one specific, representative individual, a choice has to be made about the gender pronoun to use (he or she). A sometimes compromise is to use “they”, which is the English gender-neutral plural third person pronoun, used in this sense as a gender neutral singular pronoun.
This compromise is unsatisfactory because it is grammatically incorrect (prescriptively, although descriptive grammars might have to recognize its use in this way); but also because it creates a state of mental abstraction. Usually a writer talks about a representative ndividual in the group as a means of “making it real” and practically applicable for the reader - talking about specifics, practice, and example.
In that case, your choice is either to compromise on your goal of going from the theoretical, abstract, and general to the practical, concrete, and specific; or you have to choose a gender for your pronoun.
Traditionally the gender for the pronoun has been masculine (”he”), whatever the composition of the group. Some authors now use the feminine (”she”) with the understanding that if the group is of mixed gender then any insistence that the pronoun used by of masculine gender represents a bias against the identity and participation of female members of the group.
So if the students are both “he” and “she” in real life, then what’s the problem with choosing “she” if you have to choose one or the other in specific writing? Why does it have to be “he”?
(Having presented this argument, I confess that in my own writing I prefer “he”, but whenever I write it I am conscious of my own mental biases that make me prefer it).
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 09.04.2011 @ 23:06
Seems to me to be something that is easily settled empirically - study successful marriages and see what they are doing; rather than trying to do it through speculative interpretation of scriptures and statements by Srila Prabhupada.
I asked John Maxwell who “leads” in his marriage. He replied: “In areas where my wife is strong, she leads and I follow. In areas where I’m strong, I lead and she follows.”
It’s kind of obvious when you think about it. And it will be different for each couple, because every person is a unique individual with a unique strength profile - but the principle is universal.
Mutual submission - lead in areas of your strength; defer to your partner’s leadership in areas of their strength.
Comment Posted By sita-pati On 06.11.2010 @ 00:08