Women are touchstone of human values

Never look down upon any woman. They are most virtuous. With all sacred feelings in your heart, respect women and be respected. – Sri Sathya Sai Baba

“God is Love. Live in Love.” This is the teaching I’ve received. If I conduct myself per this teaching, I’ll be peaceful and happy. I can then add to the peace, and prosperity of the world.

But, how to live in Love? How to develop selflessness and serve others over my own selfish needs and interests?

The sage, Aaapastamba, suggests that I learn this by observing the conduct of a woman. When in doubt about what dharma is, the sage asks that I consult a woman. The rishi says it is impossible to describe in totality what dharma is. Dharma, the love-in-action entity that is supporting the universe, cannot be captured by words or the mind. But a woman, steeped in dharmic study and conduct born of the ages, sets an example for me to follow dharma in any difficult, complex or sensitive situation. My grandmother, who is no more, is a living example of this in my life.

Even the vedic mantras that are recited during marriage to authenticate and sanctify  the life-long togetherness of husband and wife, say that not all aspects of a married life can be covered by the mantras. They go on to say that there are several examples that are part and parcel of the conduct of women and that can help in leading a good life . The mantras say that I must consult with women, seek their advice and then act.

The strength of tradition, the ever-readiness to sacrifice and the ever-present pull of kindness that a woman brings to the human society are the incomparable treasure the world possesses.

I’ve personally witnessed this treasure in action in my travels across the world. Be it S. Korea, China, India, Vietnam, Canada, Brazil , Germany or other – the country did not matter. Women exhibited this innate treasure-house of qualities in a way that men didn’t.

My everlasting salutations to them.

Can you imagine what our  human society would be if this touchstone of human values were absent !

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