Giving birth to a baby is the ultimate act of bliss for a woman. The joy of fatherhood could be seen on a man’s face when they catch a glimpse of their baby. Religions consider it the most sacred act. That’s why; marriages are given a holy status in every religion.
But, a woman can attain womanhood only when she hits puberty or menstruation. Menstruation is nothing but the shedding of the skin of uterine wall resulting in the regular discharge of blood. Menstruation tells that the body is physically matured to produce young ones. Without menstruation, no girl can attain womanhood or motherhood. Menstruation is nothing but a gateway to motherhood. Why are such strong taboos associated with menstruation?
Ever since a girl hits puberty, the illogical norms, customs, and taboos the girl has to endure throughout her life are unbearable. What makes menstruation ‘impure’ is not mentioned anywhere in religious texts. If having periods or menstruation is impure, then giving birth to a baby must also be associated with impurity.
Now, this ridiculous thought of impurity dwells in the minds of every woman, be it from the upper economic class or lower, upper caste or lower. In fact, I’d heard the same statements coming from the mouth of two women whose lives are entirely different. They both restrain from entering the kitchen or going to temples during periods on the grounds of impurity.
Recently, when women organizations began to raise their voice against such illogical norms and their right to enter temple even during periods, the theologists cited a new reason. Women are capable of sucking energy during the time of menstruation including that of the deity. So that’s why women remain prohibited from entering the temples during those times.
Then why on earth was this reason undermined and grounds of ‘impurity’ raised all these years? I’d heard it from my mother/ My mother heard it from her mother, and so it goes. So who is behind this blasphemous lie? Why were the womanhood subjected to such lies for many centuries? These questions may remain unanswered, but it is our right to question such illogical notions.
It is the right of a woman to bleed. It is the ultimate sign of womanhood. It is not something to be ashamed of but something to be proud of. It is not a sign of impurity, but it is a sign of purity symbolizing feminine and motherhood. It is high time for every religion to change such ridiculous notions of impurity surrounding menstruation and make women bolder, helping them face their society with a courage and brave face.