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THE PLACE OF WOMEN IN TANTRA AND ‘HINDUISM’
From ‘Genocide of Women in Hinduism’ by Sita Agarwal
According to Sita
Agarwal, Vedic-Brahmanic religion was misogynistic in the extreme. Widow
immolation, wife burning, mass rape and mass burning of women, female
infanticide and enforced incense, were all religiously justified as a
form of ‘ethnic cleansing’ - designed to remove the last traces of the
pre-Aryan, dark-skinned Dravidian race and religion.
“In order to permanently destroy the genetic stock of the non-Brahmin races the Brahmins enforced the depravities of child-marriage and incest upon the non-Brahmins … Hence, incest is more common in Aryan Hindu society than in any other part of the world.”
“Even to this day incest of varying degrees (cross-cousin, father-daughter, mother-son, brother-sister, etc.) is extremely common amongst the Indo-Aryans. No other race on earth has ever recorded such a prevalence of this practice.”
“Vaishnavism [Vishnu worship] is the religion that grew out of the Vedic religion and became the dominant Brahmanic faith after obliterating Buddhism and Jainism … It hence inherited the Aryan male-chauvinist dogmas of the Vedic religion. It is now the dominant form of the six ‘Astika’ schools of Brahmanism in existence, for 75 % of all `Hindus' are Vaishnavites. Hence, the Vaishnava literature (Puranas, Smrtis, etc.) pour venom and hatred against women. Women are generally termed as thieves, dacoits, pirates, thirsty tigresses and hypocrite cats …”
“Lecherous Brahmin men transformed Vedism into Vaishnavism (which represents 75 % of all ‘Hindus’) and abrogated to themselves the right to sexual enjouyment of all races, while other men were forbidden access to Brahmin women.”
Vaishnavist temples became brothels for Brahmins serviced by black aboriginal Sudra women.
“One of the main examples of this wonderful treatment of aboriginal women is the ‘great’ God Krishna himself. He raped the Black Sudra women, namely the low-caste cowherdesses or Gopis on a massive scale. These ghastly deeds were later distorted into a benign love story by the fraud Brahmins in order to whitewash Krishna's crimes.”
In contrast to Vishnu, ‘Shiva’ was originally a Dravidian god and Agarwal herself refers to the complexly different attitude to women expressed through both ‘Sudra’ Shaivism, Shakta and Tantric religious traditions:
“There were exceptions to the rule, even during the Vedic Dark Ages following the collapse of the Indus civilization. Eastern India (Purvadesha), including Bengal, with its majority Mon-Khmer population, was only slightly Aryanized. The Shakti cult (mother-goddess) predominated … Worship of mother-goddesses was prevalent, and inculculated a spirit of independence amongst Shakta and Tantric women. By contrast, Brahmanic Hindu goddesses were designed to inculculate obedience and subservience to men.”
“However, Aryanisation in the 6-7th centuries led to the extermination of the indigenous Tantra and Shakta faiths. The arrival of Brahmanism … led to a consequent decline in the status of women. The Dravidian women were also freer. Malabar was a centre of the Tantric form of the Shiva-Shakti cult, and matriarchal customs still prevail.”
Yet “the Shiva-Shakti cult” also flourished and survived until recently through the liberal culture and religion of Kashmir, based on the unique Tantric religion of Shiva-Shakti known as ‘Kashmir Shaivism’.
Misogynism however, was perpetuated in both Jainism and Buddhism: “Buddha is said to have induced his disciples not to look at a woman or even talk to her” [Sacred Books of the East,XI p.91 cited in Bhatt p.44 ]