So, tonight I’m going to speak a little bit about marriage. Pretty relevant topic, I think.
So many here are either married or wanting to be married. If there’s one topic that’s more common than any other topic, this is it. If there’s one thing that consumes the consciousness more than any other one topic, this is it.
But, unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation circulating about marriage, about the role of the husband, the role of the wife. I am quite surprised sometimes when I hear these things because it shows people are listening to the wrong sources of information. They go to the Internet and listen to some guy’s lecture on the Internet about marriage. They read somebody’s books on marriage, or they read scripture, Shrimad Bhagavatam, for instance, and take what they want from that to use it to support their desires. And then they have a justification, “Oh, but here it says this.” So, this is where spiritual understanding comes in. See, you can make scripture say anything you want it to say. You can support any philosophy with a certain text from scripture.
So, one common… philosophy (we’ll call it a philosophy; it’s not really, but we’ll use that word) about devotee marriage (of course, meaning a Vedic marriage) is that the wife should be some very perfect Vedic wife. What does that mean? That means she’s very humble, very meek, very subservient, stays at home and lights incense and candles, picks flowers, cooks beautiful, very beautiful Vedic dishes. So, when the husband comes home, “Darling, my wonderful, strong, handsome, protective, magnificent husband, please, accept my obeisances, you are so wonderful! How could I live without you?”
And, of course, who supports this philosophy? The men, of course. They demand it. I’ve seen it break up marriages, truly; divorces occurred because the wife wasn’t a perfect Vedic wife. She was serving Krishna, or she wasn’t like it says in the book. So, he decides, “Ah, I’ll get rid of you.” This male comes up with such belittling, demeaning statements to the female before marriage, after marriage (it does not matter). And, of course, they use scripture to support it. Didn’t we read an introduction to Bhagavad Gita? about women were put in the class with laborers and people who are not the most intelligent. We’ve read it, right? So, it’s said in scripture. So, they just love that, “Yes, I have it!” They capitalize on this. So, then they began to, you know, convince the female, “You’re stupid, you’re unintelligent. I am so smart, I am so clever. You, a woman, know nothing. I am the man, I have the brains, I have everything, I am so clever. And you know nothing, you are an airhead.” And they beat this poor lady verbally and psychologically into:
-Yes, I’m just that fallen mouse in the house. Please, forgive me. I am so sorry.
-Yes, ok. You don’t deserve it but out of my great compassion for you… I mean, we have to forgive the animals, they don’t know much.
It’s funny, but it’s true, it happens.
And if the poor wife just even attempts to put forward the idea: “Maybe you are wrong…” or “Maybe, you know, you should do something different…” Oh, bad idea. Just that thought that she has is an offense, “I can be wrong? Who are you to tell me anything?”
So, if she’s submissive, then she is a good wife, “Oh, I have the best wife.” He’s like a little dog coach, “Look, she does this, she does that. Bark! Woof!” This is not true, none of this is true. You see. Like I say, I’ve seen it caused so much damage in relationships.
And then you get a whole group of these guys together, they have this “advanced” understanding. And they begin to discuss their wives or their girlfriends or the other people’s wives, or whatever they discuss. And they support each other and more and more belittle the women.
This idea that all the women are completely unintelligent, they have no abilities to do anything, and only the men are very, very capable, very high in their ability to do things is not supported by reality. When I have to have somebody, when I think I need somebody to do something, some very important project, or whatever it is, and I think “Ok ” and it is always girls who are more capable than guys. This is reality, guys!