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Write about the "Woman In Me"! I wondered, Who 'exactly' was the woman in me? A Mother? A wife? A daughter? No, the woman in me was beyond these roles. Who was she, the enigmatic woman in me?
I went skipping to my husband because he loved me the best and he would have the answer, or so I thought. I asked him, "Who is the woman in me?"
He looked at me suspiciously and said, "Bad time of the month, huh?" I huffed and went away from him. I called up my mother, the one who knew me best, I asked her the same question. In a worried tone, without answering my question, she said, "What happened? Is everything okay? Did you fight with your husband?" I huffed again and cut the call. No use, these people couldn't answer my questions.
I resorted to the next best option, I opened a book on woman empowerment and no sooner did I open the first page, "Poof" appeared a genie, my favorite kind, the book genie. I knew she would answer my questions(yeah, it's a she), but wouldn't stay long, so without preamble, I asked her,
"Hi Miss Genie. Tell me, none could answer this question of mine, who is this woman in me."
The genie replied, "The woman in you is a spirit, a spirit that runs through you and every other woman all through the past, present and future. What that spirit stands for, I will let you decide after we take a little tour to this place called, 'Past' "
Without further ado, the genie took me back to the Vedic times of India! Oh, what a beautiful sight it was. All the woman were either deep in thought or happy in their work. They were treated equally as men in terms of education, marriage and house work. The civilization was beautifully developed, and nowhere was there any atrocity directed wholly towards women. I was surprised to see that ancient India was a gender-equal India. I wondered how from such a progressive civilization, we ended up in this gender-unequal nation. Things have to get better, right? How come they were worse?
The genie tapped on my shoulder awakening me from my thoughts and took me to our next stop. It was a small ground. A marriage was taking place. Enthusiastically, I went over to look at the bride and groom. My eyes widened in shock. The 'bride' looked six years old and the groom looked seventy years old. The genie told me that child marriages had a major part to play in the downfall of women's status. I looked at the little girl. She was crying and why wouldn't she? It was her age to play hide and seek, but she was forced to give up her education and any growth that could happen to serve the man, sixty years older to him. It was a sick sight!
Our next stop was in a calm wood. Underneath a tree, sat a man, looking a cross between a sage and a scholar. I went and bent over his stool to get a better sight of what the man was writing on the wooden bench in front of him. It was a book and the first sentence was this, "Woman are enjoined to be of service to their husband." It was repulsive. Here was a man, who defined woman as servant to a husband, nothing more, nothing less. I could guess that there could be many more men at the same time writing similar kind of things everywhere.
The genie next took me to an open ground, fully crowded. The crowd was shouting, laughing at something in the center. I went over to get a better look and there in the center, was a pyre and on that pyre was a woman, screaming. I knew what was going to happen. This was "Sati" , the barbaric practice where the wives were burned to death on their husband's pyre because her duty to the world was considered done. I so did not want to watch what was going to happen, but the genie forced me to watch. In front of my eyes, the lady was burned to death amid screams and curses. My mind was disturbed and I became less enthusiastic for our next stop.