Talking about the progression of our society in today’s era, I think gender equality is one of the greatest sign. Women in India unlike before are standing at par with the other men, they are working, earning good, take end to end responsibilities and also participating in almost everything which was earlier a forte for the men. One concern to worry and a also debatable topic for the intellectual societies have been to enhance the role of a woman in the society. Today I am not talking about discrimination of women at homes or offices, but this time it’s in some temples. Yes, you heard me right some religious places in India discrimination the entry on an individual based on his\her gender and not devotion.
Strong Women Is A Symbol Of A Strong Society: How True Is This?
Today we women are setting examples in the society, but again I don’t understand how many times does a woman need to prove how strong she is. In today’s era where the pace of progression is something that matters the most, some religious places seems to have closed doors and are sadly not being able to match up with the pace at all. How do you think religious places are dealing with this gender equality thing. I feel they are avoiding it by closing the doors for the women.
I don’t deny the fact that in India there are different religions and each one have their own set of traditions, discipline and etiquette’s to follow. But how does creating inequality do justice to religion. We talk about how strong women have grown today, this has definitely been a difficult journey. But these religious places are setting a wrong example to the world isn’t it. I am definitely not trying to offend any religious belief, but according to me this discrimination is portraying a weak image of the Indian women.
The Religious Perspective
I feel when it comes to religious traditions, rituals and customs it is a matter of faith and belief. Be it God, Bhagwan or Allah I fee neither of them would discriminate between their devotees. This is also mentioned in the holy books, so when God doesn’t believe in discrimination why are we humans doing this mean task?
Enlisting Some Indian Temples Where Entry To Woman Is A Strict NO
Check our below 10 temples in India who closed their doors to women devotees.
1. Shree Padmanabhaswamy Temple (Kerala)
Starting from the world popular and world richest temple, none other than the Padmanabhaswamy Temple which is located in Kerala, India. While I was researching about this fascinating temple there was one sad fact that I came to know and that was that this temple doesn’t allow women to enter in the temple. The temple follows strict customs and rituals and allows women to pray, but they restricted the entry of the women inside the temple vault to do the inventory. Talking about a case from the year 2012, a female archaeologist (from Archaeological Survey of India) was not allowed inside the chamber by the temple authorities for the purpose of inventorying.
2. Ayyappan Temple (Sabarimala)
Another temple located in the beautiful state of Kerala, which forbids the entry to women is the Ayyappan temple. Thousands of followers of Lord Ayyappan visit this holy place, but females are restricted entry. Other interesting fact is that the females who fall between the age bracket of 12 to 50 are particularly restricted. This is because in this age bracket women menstruate, and Lord Ayyappan is a strict Bramachari so women are strictly restricted to enter the temple premises.
3. Jain Temple (Ranakpur, Rajasthan)
There are several Jain temples in India which say no to women entering their temple premises. One of such Jain temple is located in Ranakpur which restricts entry to any women who menstruates. Another things which are restricted inside this temple along with women is leather items and camera and so on.
4. Jain Temples (Guna, Madhya Pradesh)
Another example of Jain temple is located in Guna in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The leaders of this temple imposed restriction to women wearing any western attire. They have also restricted women to apply any makeup or lipstick when they enter to pray in this temple. So women remember to wear a saree and stay simple in you want to worship here.
5. Patbausi Satra (Assam)
Patbausi satra is a temple located in the mesmerizing state of Assam. Sadly they too follow this weird tradition of restricting women to enter particularly in the sanctum sanctorum. However you would see no written instructions, but this tradition has been followed by the temple authorities for over 500 years. So virtually this message is quite clear to the visitors of this temple.
6. Shani Shingnapur Temple (Maharashtra)
The state of Maharashtra also has some examples of restricting women to enter the temple. One such popular example is the Shani Shingnapur temple, where only male devotees are allowed to enter. To add further to the rules of entering the males can enter the temple with wet clothes only to climb up the platform in order to offer oil to Shanidev. Females devotees are particularly not allowed over the platform and hence cannot offer to the idol of Shanidev. Adding one more restriction from this temple is that a particular well from where water is fetched for the rituals of Shani Maharaj , women are also restricted to use this well.
7. Haji Ali Dargah (Mumbai)
Since childhood I knew that entry to women is restricted in mosque, don’t know the backed up reason though. I feel this is another aspect of the Indian society where both temple and mosques reach for the same conclusion. Women are restricted in the area where the tomb is located, they consider it to be a serious sin.
8. Jama Masjid (Delhi)
Another example of a popular mosque in India which restricts entry to women is Jama masjid. They banned women to enter the minarets area, the exception would be allowed if accompanied with a male companion. Also after the Maghrib prayer, the women are restricted entry.
9. Nizamuddin Dargah (New Delhi)
There is a chamber in the Nizamuddin Dargah where the saint of the 14th century lived and also died and buried. Women are not allowed to enter this particular chamber.
10. Idgah Masjid (Shillong, Meghalaya)
Considered to be one of the most religious places in India, the Idgah mosque also restricts entry for women followers for a very long time. But in the year 2008, this mosque allowed entry to women followers and became the first mosque in India which opened doors for the women. This is surely a remarkable move isn’t it?
Don’t get me wrong, I am not opposing to any of the belief. But the point is that be it any gender male of female they are all equally important for the society like the religious communities. Religious communities are not the ultimate powers to decide but it should be left to the followers to decide. And again as a follower, one is also expected to respect the customs which are followed. Is imposing band an action which can help to keep the traditions and customs alive? I feel the followers would actually keep it alive forever, not just mere rules and regulations. I feel such rules actually take the faith of the devotees aback.