Superiority of the Sorority
I have always wondered if women are superior to men. Not that I would hesitate to say so should I be thoroughly convinced about the veracity of the conjecture. All I am letting you in at this stage of my random musings is that I have a shrewd suspicion of that being precisely the case, lurking somewhere in the back of my mind, like the proverbial bee in the bonnet. Having said that, I must concede that I have not come across, given my limited exposure to the subject at hand, conclusive proof or evidence to either support or rubbish the theory. Nor do I have the benefit of study of psychology, especially the female part of it, to do so. For that matter, I am not even sure how many women really believe that they are actually superior to men notwithstanding their haughty contempt or idiosyncratic indifference to them. A substantial number of them may not care either way and may, if pushed or prodded for their opinion, say something like "Oh, bother!" or whatever young ladies are wont to say these days in such circumstances before re-engaging themselves in their passionate profession or favourite pastime.
No Lesser, Definitely
It is another thing that many, if not most of the women, would consider themselves no lesser than or inferior to any man. Women, all over the world, have already amply demonstrated innumerable numbers of times, to the utter discomfiture of men, that they are equal to the latter; they have, on several occasions, even gone ahead and excelled men, practically in every field of social, scientific, cultural or economic activity. That women are no lesser than men is overstating the obvious and beyond a debate. In any case, there is no winning a debate with a woman! You may no sooner win a debate with a woman than pull out the back tooth of a wide-awake, starving lion, or should I say, lioness! I mean, a woman has, like a lioness, a biting argument or two up her sleeve which you can't beat!
Not a Matter of Choice
That women are biologically different from men is a happenstance which is neither anybody's wanton choice nor fervent wish but entirely on account of a dispensation by God, or Nature if you will. It would be, I daresay, as stupid on the part of a woman to feel shameful or be embarrassed about her gender as it would be on the part of a man to feel arrogant or cocky about his. Some of us are born one gender while the rest, the other. It is like a game of cards, where your cards mean to you no more than mere points or corresponding quantum of winning amount, with nary a sentiment nor pride attached to them. Likewise, your gender is the wherewithal which you have been bequeathed with by an apparently neutrois generosity set out to accomplish the task of creating men and women, with a view to enabling you to accomplish whatever the purpose of your life on earth. It is quite another matter that almost all of the hoi polloi that you get to interact with in your day to day life consign their gender to the status of a fiery plume on their hat or a dandy flower at the buttonhole, without in the least, utilising it for the intended purpose of accomplishing the task at hand. In any case, there seems to be no other significance or grand design attached to the act of distribution of gender. In short, "No big deal," one could say about one's gender and snort as contemptuously or disdainfully as one is accustomed to do on such occasions. Alternatively, one could deign to shrug one's pretty or brawny shoulders, depending upon what gender one is, and move on to whatever inconsequential thing or mundane matter that catches one's fancy.
Gender and God
It is a matter of mild surprise or a whit of a wonderment that there is a kind of delicate balance maintained between the strength of the female population and that of menfolk notwithstanding man's, and not infrequently a woman's, attempt to thwart the balance by tampering with the women's population and trying to keep it down, in several parts of the world, for their own whacky reasons. That being the case, it would appear rather inappropriate to say that genders are allotted to babies at the time of their birth at random like handouts from a basket of indeterminate numbers of candies and cookies. Mind you, depending upon the candy or cooky that you are handed out, the plumbing and stuff of your body would have to be designed, or vice versa. Not to make too fine a point, creation of babies of particular genders would appear to be an act of a deliberate or conscientious decision on the part of God just as the making of cookies or candies by a confectioner or baker. Incidentally, I find it difficult to subscribe to the belief, no matter how vacuous, that the all-powerful God spends all His time, creating, sustaining and weeding out the deadwood and errant life forces from this world, intermittently pausing to sit back on His high throne and savour moments of peace and solitude. What a narrow and cavalier-like attitude it would be on the part of a callow idler, about a God who is omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent! Aside from creating, sustaining and annihilating the universe, including our world, a mere cosmic dust, all of which should not take the Almighty God more than a mere wink's time, one may ask what God does with His time. The answer is as simple as it would sound presumptuous, if not preposterous, and conceited on the part of a lowly mortal to attempt to explain away God's lofty and august activities. In God's scheme of things, there is no such thing as time, as we know it. It is men who are tricked into being bound by the shackles of time which is but an illusory concept conceived by human mind. God is free of delusions or manacles of time, space or limitations of power.
Man, Lord and Master
Now, back to the mundane, earthly, and yet no less appealing, matter of woman's standing in comparison to man. Man is much smaller, less fast, less ferocious, and a whole lot less powerful than several humongous animals, beasts and predators of this world, living or extinct. And yet, he has always been the unchallenged lord and master of the world who, by the dint of the power of his mind over matter, controls all the much larger and more powerful living things and is capable of destroying the entire world not just once but several times over! In this context, 'man' represents entire humanity, including women, the role of women in shaping the destiny of humanity in a world where might is still considered right, being absolute and unquestionable.
Woman's Emergence from the Shadows
Against the above backdrop, man bows before a woman, not simply out of the politically right considerations like courtesy, cultured behaviour or sophistication, or considerations of matters of heart, like love, affection or sentimentality. Nor is it the false belief of man that woman is too fragile, delicate or vulnerable to be able to fend for herself and, therefore, needs his patronage and protection. All these reasons could have weighed in man's mind at some distant point of time in the hoary past but most certainly no longer. It is the recognition and acknowledgement of the woman's innate power, not only to take care of herself, but also to change the course of a male-dominated world, and the fact that woman started long ago making forays into typical male bastions like education, sports, arts, culture, politics and spiritual authority, that prevailed on man's mind to alter his view and treatment of woman.
Woman's Cutting Edge
In all my interactions, be they personal or social in nature or for business purposes, with women irrespective of their position or equation, I have not been able to help feeling overawed, much unlike with fellow menfolk. No matter how winsome their charming ways, or elegant and feminine their approach to issues, the one quality of theirs which has truly bowled me over, time and again, is the effortlessness and graceful ease with which they seamlessly slip from one to another of the numerous roles they play simultaneously in life, without leaving ugly smudges or unseemly loose ends. Doing all this should, in itself, be quite a daunting task by man's standards. To do it all to perfection, which is more often than not is the case with woman, is something unbelievable and utterly bewildering. This is something which no man could come anywhere close to attempting, let alone successfully. And the mind of a woman, once made, is made for ever. If how much pressure a woman could take without breaking, constitutes an amazing feature of her persona, how fiercely a woman could hit out to protect herself and all that is dear to her, is truly awesome. The toughest material ever, that is what woman is made of. If man could be likened to a razor sharp blade, woman is but a strand of silk which would not budge under the blade.
Short of an Angel
Man was, with all his shortcomings and lacunae, born to stand tall and proud, with his feet firmly planted on terra firma, like the Colossus of Rhodes. But for a redundant quality which she has been endowed with, namely, vanity, in addition to all her endearing qualities which are, any day, attributes of a man's envy, woman would have metamorphosed into an angel and even joined the ranks of Gods. Commit the cardinal sin of ticking a woman off to hurt her vanity or ego and there she goes ballistic, rendering all your wit and valour, brawn and bravery, as non-effective and useless as a glass eye at a magic eye. Vanity verily constitutes the lashings which bind woman to the earth. This author is a living proof of an unwary victim who discovered the hard way the truth that hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, albeit deservedly, and survived the day to write another column!
© 2015 Kalyanaraman Raman