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Vagina in the Penis Shadow

On the onset let me apologize for the language and the clinical definition usage of the anatomies of the human body. Let me also state that the intent is also not to offend any religion but to make in point.

I was amused at first and then horrified reading award winning Hindi film actress Swara Bhasker’s version of ‘Vagina Monologue’ or rather let’s call it ‘Vagina Rants’. She viewed the controversial Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie ‘Padmavaat’ and decided to expresses her thoughts and shouts in an article that appeared on an Indian online news portal – The Wire.

Her lopsided article hovered around the woman’s anatomy ‘vagina’. It got me thinking about the ‘vagina’ – its enormous power over the history and penises of the world.

Sometimes I wonder if feminists defending the rights of women actually understand the power of a ‘vagina’ as many assume that a vagina still functions in the shadow of the penis.

When I was a teenager, I happened to chance on a smutty comic strip that explained the ‘Power of a Vagina’ to me. In the comic strip a boy comes to a girl and starts boasting after taking down his pants saying, “I have got this but you don’t have this (pointing to his penis)”. The young girl drops down her pants and says, “With what I have, I can get many of those (pointing to her vagina).”

I am a firm believer in the power of the vagina.

Even in the Bible if you go to the Book of the Genesis in the story about the ‘Tree of Life & Tree of Knowledge’ you will see that when the serpent tempted Eve to eat the apple, she in turn told Adam to eat the apple and Adam willingly ate. That was nothing but the power of the vagina. The vagina said ‘eat the apple and the penis obliged.

History will show you that the power of vagina was so feared by many Abrahamic religions that the Catholic Church launched the Crusades to burn and put to the stake free-thinking vaginas because the penises in the Church just could not fathom the enormous spiritual and nature derived power of the vagina. Islam covered the vaginas under a Burkha under which they had to put their lipsticks.

The vagina though hidden has always exercised its power over the world. This phenomenon has never been exercised more in India. The power of the Indian vagina has got the world looking in amazement. So much so that our Bollywood vaginas like Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone are carving a niche from themselves in Hollywood while the penises like Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan are cocooned inside their Bollywood pants.

One of India’s most dynamic yet controversial Prime Minister many years before Narendra Modi had a vagina and not a penis. Indira Gandhi had such power that under the aegis of her prime ministership the penises had to let go of their ‘mojo’ during the Emergency. ‘Emergency Down Down’ was actually a cry by the penises because many would never be able to get it up any more as the ‘nasbandi’ kept the penises down down.

Our vagina cricket team often fairs more successfully than the penis cricket team. Our vagina wrestlers and boxers earn more laurels for our nation than the penises.

As a Nation we have always embraced the vagina. Do you know why Swara?

The answer to that question is very simple and there for all to see. We have always embraced the vagina because we have never seen it as a vagina but seen a woman as a ‘woman’. Our scriptures, our Vedic thoughts and up bringing have always taught us to see the divinity in the soul of a woman and not the hole of her vagina.

When you reduce the beauty, strength, intelligence and courage of a woman to that of vagina you have not understood the power of a woman.

Rape is a heinous crime. The vagina will heal after a rape but the soul of woman will that heal so easily, I doubt. It is difficult to console a rape survivor, often I have experienced we can only provide our shoulders to stand up again and walk or sometimes to cry. To become a sex slave is to undergo the horror of rape repeatedly. If you talk to some women prostitutes who were forced into the flesh trade and try understanding their minds; you will see that if society gave them a chance to change they would abandon the life of prostitution.

If I was living in the era of Rani Padmavati, I would have hoped that the women found courage to fight their adversary to death but I will not condemn their act of defiance and sacrifice because it is valor. To die protecting one’s honor and pride is a like a soldier dying in the battlefield to protect the honor and pride of his motherland. Rani Padmavati chose death over sexual slavery and with her over 15000 women in Rajasthan. You might think it is regressive but it is not. It is courageous to walk through a pyre of fire to protect your honor and dignity which will be ravaged over and over again by savages having only desires to quench their lust. I don’t know if it is right or wrong. That’s not for me to judge.

In the Catholic Church itself there are two women canonized as Saints because they protected their honor during a rape attempt and killed themselves rather than allow themselves to be raped. The Church did not think it to be regressive or against God’s will.

I am not an advocating that women or men getting raped or who were raped should kill themselves. No, they should fight the perpetrators and we should fight with, and for them. But you and I can never understand the mindset of women or men and what triggers the sense of honor and dignity in her or him. This I say knowing that you are a woman and I am a man.

In my first novel ‘Karmic Ishq’ I have narrated the repeated rape incidents of two of my closet friends who coincidently happen to be lovers but not spouses. Even though they have gone ahead to lead beautiful lives, the scars of the abuse shows up sometimes. You should read it when you get a chance and give me your feedback.

In the rural villages of some states in India, if a boy were to hold a girl’s hand without them being betrothed to each other it would be considered to be an infringement of a woman’s honor and dignity. But in a city, a girl can kiss a boy and it might not be considered to be an infringement of a girl’s dignity in some cases.

Dan Brown so aptly describes the male and female anatomy and their union in his fantastic book ‘Da Vinci Code’ – the chalice for the vagina and the blade for the penis.

To me the beauty is the fusion between the chalice and the blade that creates life, which is then held in the chalice which is its truest form of the vagina – that of a nurturer and defender.

You are right in your premise that many penises continue to see women as vaginas. In order for us to change this thought, the vaginas must stop thinking of themselves as powerless vaginas but powerful women with a purpose and passion to life.

To me the Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie was boring and over-hyped with absolutely no substance except the beautiful sets. Ranveer Singh was over the top, Deepika Padukone was a glammed doll, Shahid Kapoor was restrained and Jim Sarbh was unbearable. It does not portray women as vaginas; in fact it portrays the men with no penises. The sword fight sequence was worse than the sparring my two daughters and their friends do for their Karate training. The songs for such a magnum opus were a complete let down, only the background haunting score stays with you for a while.

Taking a lesson from the movie itself we learn that if you see a woman as a woman you will be loved for your life with her life, if you see her as vagina you will never win her love and devotion, you end up alone with your penis.

The vagina never lives in the shadow of the penis. She has her own image and leaves her own shadow on the world.

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