Chapter 6: Why Are Religions Afraid of Women?
This was not told to the public at large, because his disciples were afraid that he would lose his mahatmahood. People would start thinking, “What is this?” It was suppressed from reaching the public; only a few disciples, close disciples who could keep their mouths shut, knew about it. But in the eyes of those close disciples Gandhi had already fallen, he was no more the same mahatma he used to be.
I have been telling these Jaina monks, “Try to understand Gandhi, what happened to him. And this will happen to you. But you can remain so starved that there is no energy left in you.” That was Mahatma Gandhi’s mistake; otherwise this would not have happened. It was because he was eating well, nourishing food, milk, everything that was needed for the body. He was very concerned about the body, very careful about the body. That was the reason that it happened. Energy was there, and he was not a dull man. He was tremendously intelligent. But as the energy rises to intelligence, it also goes deeper, to your very foundation of sexuality. It goes to the roots. If the energy goes to the flowers, it has to go to the roots. There is no other way to reach the flowers; it has to go through the roots. But I have found these people so dull. I would be talking to them and I could see they have not heard anything; their eyes look almost dead, their bodies have shrunk. They look ugly.
They have been against sex, that’s why they have to be against the woman. Jainas believe that nobody can be liberated from a woman’s body. Only man can be liberated, can attain to the ultimate - their word is moksha - but only from a man’s body, not from a woman’s body. What is wrong with a woman’s body? There is no difference at all. The only difference is physiological, and that too is not much of a difference - not a difference that can make a difference.
Man’s sexual organs are hanging out and woman’s sexual organs are hanging in, that’s the only difference. Just turn your pocket and let it hang out; the pocket becomes male. Put it back to its original position, it becomes female. This you call a difference? The same pocket? It is because there is not much difference that now science has discovered a man can become a woman just by simple plastic surgery; a woman can become a man just by plastic surgery. If there was some fundamental difference then it would not be possible. By plastic surgery you are just turning the pocket out or in, and nothing much is there.
Jainas say a woman is condemned by her female body. First she has to become a man. So there are Jaina nuns - they are not striving for liberation, they are striving to be born in the next life as a man, then they will work for liberation. There is one step more for them than for a man. “Ladies first” does not apply.