duminică, 18 noiembrie 2007

Women and Religious Communities I.

This is a long essay about the subject, so I cut it into parts. My English is not perfect for I strongly apologise.

aP. Prehistoric Societies

The martial-rider-nomad societies like the initial Indo-Aryan changed the matriarchal scheme of prehistoric societies. These martial-based societies were man-centered, the pantheon was formed mostly by man-gods led by man-leader, who was mostly a warrior-god full whit man-virtue. The agricultural societies in contradistinction presented the woman-principle in their genesis-myths, and this as mother-earth-goddess had a strong rule in pantheons compared to nomad societies. The Earth as mother and woman related to birth, giving birth, motherhood, death, which were woman-influenced questions of life. The Earth and fertility had mostly goddesses. In these societies women had important role in communities, they were allowed to be priests as well, the woman-principle having important part of agriculture, and so in their Religious Anthropology. In polytheistic religions the sky was a man and the earth was a woman, and their importance determined the men`s and women`s place in prehistoric societies. From their hieros gamos began the world, but during the war of gods they mostly lost their importance.

Even though the cosmogonies and creation-ranks declared the man and woman equal, the society implicitly or frankly put the women under men`s jurisdiction. Almost every language had (or has) different personal pronouns referring to men and women. Talking about god (gods) using the masculine form of the personal pronoun or the masculine form of the `god` word indirectly determined the gender of that god even though the sacred texts affirm the god`s genderlessness.

b. TThe Religions of the Book

In the Book Religions` (in order to appearance Judaism, Christianity and Islam) genesis God/Allah is above the gender as the creator of it, but almost every language (including the Hebrew, Greek and Arabic in which the sacred texts are written, but for example not the Hungarian where there`s no grammatical difference between genders) uses the masculine form of `god` word and masculine personal pronouns when talking about god. More over it is a fact of History of Religions that both Jahve and Allah absorbed in themselves some gods before monotheism: Jahve absorbed the Canaanite cult of El, who was a not too powerfull creator god before the Jewish conquest, and Allah himself was the ancient Arabic god of the Kaba Rock.

c. TThe Phenomenon

If we consider the religion as a social, political, economical, historical phenomenon, never once society have existed without some kind of religion. The Spiritual, the knowledge oh the Holy was always a necessity in historical societies and in one or other way is being represented in today`s different cultures as well. As an influencing factor, it is not possible to put away or to overstep the religion-based woman- and man-picture, or because it is still a living typos, or because it has a cultural and historical influence.