How many times have you heard this in general discussions on preserving Indian culture and traditions?
- “Indian woman should follow the Indian culture”
- “Indian woman should be a Bharatiya Nari”
- “Indian wife should be like Sita”
- “Indian women should practice and preserve the Indian traditions”, and so on.
Now how many times have you heard the below statements?
- “Indian man should follow the Indian culture”
- “Indian man should be a Bharatiya Nara”
- “Indian husband should be like Ram”
- “Indian men should practice and preserve the Indian traditions” and so on
Now let us try to answer the following question. Who is leading the society in India in following and preserving the Indian culture and traditions? The Indian man or the Indian woman? Not sure?
Just look around. Compare the number of women wearing Saree and Churidaar and compare this with the number of men wearing dhoti and lungi. Still not sure? Chances are that you will not find even a single man wearing a dhoti or lungi, but you will almost always find women wearing traditional Indian clothing like Saree, Churidar etc.
Visit a nearby temple during an evening and count the the number of women and the number of men there. You will almost always see that the number of women exceeds the number of men.
Take a statistical survey of the homes and families you know and count the number of women doing their daily cultural and religious duties like Tulsi Pooja, lighting lamps, decorating Gods with flowers, drawing Rangoli, etc and count the number of men doing their daily cultural duties regularly. How many Indian men who have undergone the sacred threading ceremony of Upanayana do the Sandhya Vandana regularly every day?
During the cultural festivals like Diwali, Ugadi, Dasara, Sankranti, etc who manages all the cultural events at home? Who gets up early, cooks the traditional dishes, decorates the pooja room and the house, washes and sets up the pooja items and so on. It is the women of the house who do it. Most men just enter in the final stage to do the pooja once everything is setup and prepared by the women.
Forget the adults, look at the younger boys and girls. How many girls do you see doing pooja, drawing rangoli, wearing ethnic Indian dresses, chanting mantras, etc. How many boys do the prayers, upanayana, help the elders on festive occasions etc?
Now answer the question for yourself. Who is better at preserving, practicing and upholding the Indian culture and traditions? Indian man or the Indian woman?
Wearing a dhoti requires as much training as teaching a kid to wear trousers. Even today in the vidyapeetha’s across the country students wear traditional Indian attire with almost the same speed as wearing pants. You don’t have to tighten it up if you wear it propertly, just like you don’t have to pull up the pants if you wear the ones of the right size.
User friendly is relative to every user, and generally in terms of dresses, their local dresses are more user friendly for people in most cultures, which is not the case for men in India, and that is my point here.
For that matter, isn’t wearing a saree more complex than wearing a dhoti? But women still do wear it, which shows their determination towards their tradition. Even those women who wear saree once in a while during the festive season, wear it with such great smiles on their faces, while we don’t see the same in our men.
BTW Indian Men didn’t start wearing pants because it is user friendly, they did so because they identified themselves with the colonial ruling class in those days by wearing pants, just like how today guys are impressed and imitate the western life styles.
Regarding women being more “indian”, of course, there is no question! Absolutely true. Only men behave so ugly: smoking, spitting all the time like camels…. Drinking, raping etc.. Due to efforts of goverment (such as alcohol sells etc.) indian men (mostly) turned into savages, while women, on the other hand, remain human beings till now, especially in villages. This Bharata Mata survives solely thanks to it’s women. I’m looking for a person to teach me about wearing dhoti (with folds) properly. I met some men who wear dhoti (with folds) very beautifully but none of them spoke English.. Also, the cloth of dhoti is important. I need one that breathes! (for hot climate).
about the comparison of women wearing a saree to men comparing dhoti is of no relevance, how oblivious is that considering many indian women who wear saree do not go to office and most of them are housewives?? If you dont find it relevant let me give you an example.. Saree is an acceptable form of attire in an office environment.. whereas you wont find a place for dhoti in the office dress code.. that is why a women can wear a saree in office while men cant wear a dhoti.. I am not against your article, infact I agree to most of what you have written, but kindly do not portray anything that is different than it seems..
And why is dhoti not acceptable in an office environment? Because Indian men “stopped” wearing it, and started wearing trousers (pants) instead. While women continued to wear Saree and traditional Indian attire, men gave them up completely.
Just look at the pre-independence era photos, you will still find Indian men wearing dhoti in those days even in offices. Today we have created a situation where one will be laughed at by other men in the office if he wears dhoti, while women didn’t allow this to happen to their sarees. Isn’t it?
good but all of them are not wearing the traditional saree but just a cotton or silk saree right.the no. of boys who under go the upanayana is still high but the no. of boys who do the sandhya vandhana is remarkably low but how many of the women do the puja in a traditional and proper way they have made the system modern and themself modified it.
Women are anyday better than men, n times. Women do puja with dedication, which you never see in most men. Just visit the temples, or have a look around in your neighborhood. And something is ALWAYS better than nothing.
Women also display a better sense of social and cultural responsibility (most of them compared to men) in the Indian society, so is their cultural and traditional knowledge n times more than that of men.