This a young girl in Nepal, standing before her “menstrual shed” where she must spend her days and nights while having her period lest she defile other people and objects.
You can read about this insanity that derives from and is still a part of the Hindu religion in an excellent NPR article from a series of stories of what idiocies 15 year old girls have to endure around the world mostly due to primitive patriarchal traditions ensconced in the religious thinking of their cultures.
The entire series is accessible HERE.
Religions maintain the majority of these ridiculous and utterly stupid, unscientific taboos enough so there is a entire WIKI on the subject.
This IS the 21 century isn’t it? The ridiculous misogyny inherent in religions are pathetic in this day and age and are NOT to be respected. From the report:
“These taboos date back thousands of years and pervade nearly all cultures and religions, Aryal says. For example, in Christianity, women on their periods were once thought to be dangerous. In some places, these taboos still hold on. For ultra-Orthodox Jews, the laws forbid any contact between men and women. Out in Nepal’s western villages, these ancient rules are more than just a nuisance.”
No shit. Can you imagine your daughter walking 10 minutes out to a shed in the middle of the night to sleep sitting up with 2-3 other girls because there isn’t enough room to lay down and they are drenched all night by monsoon rains?
Since this poor girl banished to a shed outside with a leaking roof and no sides in the torrential rains of Nepal’s monsoon season lives in a simple village setting, we might think that such thinking is confined to undeveloped parts of the world, in only the uneducated portions of a country, where primitive religious thinking still holds sway. Not so, unfortunately for girls even in more “enlightened” settings.
From the same article, another girl named Prakriti who is not banished to a shed and is one of the minority of girls in Nepal who will attend college STILL is banished from the kitchen and cannot touch others while having her period…seriously. She lives and dresses as any other middle class kid from a developed country anywhere in the world might, yet she dares not challenge the insane religious traditions which still dominate the minds of her educated and otherwise progressive parents and community:
Prakriti and her mom.
“There was a time when my father got sick, and he was hospitalized,” she says. “The doctors couldn’t diagnose him, and then one of the priests, he said, because I had touched him when I was having my period, it could have infuriated the clan gods.”
And where does this insanity spring from? The article continues:
“Ancient Hindu scriptures say women are highly infectious during their periods, that “all her body is so weak that viruses come out of her mouth and her limbs,” says Mukunda Aryal, who has studied Hindu culture for 40 years”.
And Prakriti is waging a one woman campaign to end this absurdity. Like another brave adolescent girl Malala in neighboring Pakistan, she fights the absurdity in her culture against women that is maintained primarily by religious thought. Do read of her admirable progressive efforts in the NPR article linked above. Prakriti and Malala for me truly represent the youth of the world that are too globally connected, too educated, too used to thinking rationally to accept much of religious bullshit anymore. Fifteen year olds know better. Despite their relative immaturity, their bullshit detectors are working in adult mode, full speed, all out. They know better. We must help them eliminate religious thought that deludes, represses and ruins lives.
I don’t hate relgionists. They are regular folks, just like all of the rest of us, they have just been bullshitted into one set of primitive myths and repressive rules or another and then often are surrounded by religious thinking so deeply in their culture they cant begin to escape it.
I hate religious thinking. Not merely for its absurdity and smugness in its arrogance to claim things it cant know or which we now know are completely imaginary and wrong, but in its diminishment and all too often outright ruining of peoples lives all over the globe, especially women, and gays.
I work for the day when not one more 15 yr old girl has to sit in the rain and cold at night in some fucking menstrual shed, not one more gay kid in a Xian or Islamic culture kills themselves from the ostracizaton from their family and community and guilt they are taught to feel about their sexuality, not one more child is born into crushing poverty to live miserably and/or die an early death because his mother follows Pope Frank’s Catholic Church’s insane birth control dogma, not one more Mormon girl gets slut-shamed for not wearing sleeves….need I go on?
It’s why i write.
end religion now.
all of them.