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Women and virtue

Women and virtue
Highlights

The basic virtue for any human being, whether man or woman, is to be true to themselves. What is virtue? Your idea of virtue about doing this or that, is social virtue not life virtue.

The basic virtue for any human being, whether man or woman, is to be true to themselves. What is virtue? Your idea of virtue about doing this or that, is social virtue not life virtue. Now, for example, was Veerappan a virtuous man? He was a criminal who slew almost six hundred elephants and everybody wanted him dead. But in the past, in Tamil Nadu, one of the greatest titles that could be conferred on great heroes was "One who has slain a thousand elephants." So our values and virtues have changed. Today, you are considered a criminal if you kill a thousand elephants. But a thousand years ago, you were a hero of the highest order. So society's virtues serve society, life virtue serves life.

Today, even the people who take up so called good causes are doing so with identification. Now there are women's movements that are trying to lay down a new set of virtues because they do not like the old ones. The new virtues will not be any better. A woman will be virtuous when she transcends her identification with her body and is no longer identified with body parts.

When you refer to life as masculine or feminine, this whole idea has entered you because the difference in a man and a woman's body parts is entrenched too deeply into your consciousness and you cannot think beyond it. You should not carry your manhood or womanhood twenty-four hours a day. You can just be a being. In certain situations in your life, you need to be a man or a woman but for the rest of the time why would you want to be identified with a few body parts. So, there is no separate virtue for a woman. Virtue is for all human beings.

In a certain way, virtue means that which takes you beyond. The only thing that can take you beyond is if you are no longer a limited being, you are not really associated with your thoughts, emotions, opinions or sensations. If you are identified with all these, you will be biased with life. If you are truly virtuous, you must be beyond all bias and only then will you truly be capable of compassion. Compassion is not about being sympathetic to certain causes or certain people. You are compassionate when your passion becomes all encompassing and you are passionate about everything. Compassion is the highest virtue and it is not possible if you are identified with this or that. You can be compassionate only when you are able to just look at life as life and not as "my life" or "your life."

Ranked amongst the fifty most influential people in India, Sadhguru is a yogi, mystic, visionary and a New York Times bestselling author Sadhguru has been conferred the Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India in 2017, the highest annual civilian award, accorded for exceptional and distinguished service

(Sadhguru, Isha Foundation

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