Religion: Gender Inequality

1395 Words 6 Pages
In world religion, gender inequality has always been a great concern. This inequality did not exist based on the concepts of original religion but through cultural influence and social manipulation. The essence of Buddhism originated from a human being (known as Buddha). And Buddha is the one who achieved the highest enlightenment. Often in Buddhism concept, there was confusion about how much devotion is required to achieve the great “Enlightenment” for monk or nun. Women in the Buddhism face much more challenges to become enlightened. Throughout the essay, I will be focusing on how in Buddhist woman needs to be reborn as a man to be fully enlightened. This means this essay will examine the difficulties women face as a nun and how they …show more content…
The first rule states that “a nun even of a hundred years’ standing should salute a bhikkhu [monk] and rise before him, though he had received the higher ordination that very day” (Fisher 101). In Buddha’s mind, there was still confusion between men and women equality, as this rule points out that nuns are always below the Monks. Basically, Buddha didn’t stop the women to gain spiritual and intellectual knowledge, but the rules that he enforced showed his hesitation toward women becoming spiritual leaders (Falk, Gross 156). Women would always have to obey and worship the men in Buddhism. Thus, the question arises can women achieve enlightenment in Buddhism, when they are not allowed to practice alone. Later on, these confusions were interpreted more differently in the Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism. Few hundred years later after the death of Buddha, Buddhism was already established and the first memorized texts were written down in Pali by the monks in Sri Lanka (Fisher 104). During that period, the most prominent school was known as the Theravada School; their teachings were more conservative and concentrate on the original teachings for Buddha. Their ideas were “clearly misogynistic portions describing women as sexually insatiable temptresses, deceitful and foolish” (Fisher 104).This means that the Theravada Buddhism viewed women as an obstacle and portrayed

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