Blog Mela Nominations
Bharateeya Blog Mela

Brahmacharyashram and Grihasthyashram

Via Instapundit.com, this piece by Paul Sheehan:

It's time someone praised and defended reckless teenage girls and young women who behave badly, dress provocatively, engage in risky sex, and get pregnant. They are the normal ones. The rest of us are the deviants. They are behaving in the most natural way. The rest of us are mutants.

Our norms are also dominated by the ideology of materialism that is moving women further and further towards unnatural behaviour, pressuring them to have babies later rather than sooner.

This is society's real problem. Teenage pregnancy is trivial by comparison to suppressed pregnancy.

She goes on further:

A healthier
society would allow women to have children earlier than they do now.
...
Our aim should be to have
children born into a culture where there is plenty of support for child
care in addition to the mother, thus liberating mothers to more fully
exploit the possibilities that advanced society can offer them.

Children are the most important asset in our culture, so society should be structured around this central reality. Instead, we are structuring society around consumerism - .... When the pattern of peak reproduction at peak fertility is broken, as it is now, women are forced by economic circumstances or social pressure to postpone pregnancy. Collective fertility inevitably falls, usually below replacement level. Societies such as Australia's and most in Western Europe now depend on imported fertility. Immigrants.

She gets it right, mostly, in my opinion. The fact that even wealthy couples postpone having kids shows that problem is really severe. Or may be it is the other way round: only way to get and stay wealthy is not to have kids sooner! Either way, it is equally bad.

I believe it is still individual's (or couple's) problem and solution also lies at that level. However, more debate and awareness will help everybody make an informed decision. In US, (and I am sure in Europe and elsewhere too) it is much more easier for a woman to suspend her education/career, have kids and resume it later. I don't think there is any need to blame materialism or consumerism also. In fact, if there is one thing that has really helped women then it is the technology, which progressed largely because of our healthy hunger to improve quality of our lives.

Government involvement has generally made the matters worse. The case in point is public education. I sometimes shudder when I think how much of our major decisions are forced on us by the public education. In India, you need to complete 10+2 years of education before you can join college. Then if you want to get a professional degree you have to attend 4 year college. Government controls the sequence, duration and contents of education and controls the supply (through licensing). And I am not only talking about government "financed" institutions. This in turn, influences when we complete our education, have jobs, marry and finally have kids. It is hard to mix eduation, job, and family responsibilities. There is no reason why a secular government should take the Ashramas, especially  Brahmacharya and Grihasthya, so seriously!

In an alternate universe, where private education was not controlled, we would have a much different society, a society that reflects our real choices regarding our aptitute, career, and family.

Comments

Sumanth

Social systems are too complex and their behaviour can not be changed overnight. The overall dynamics worldwide is moving away from from marriage in first place.

Soon men will ask feminist infected women to marry down.

raven

Dude, some of us "mutants" simply don't want children!

Sakshi

Did you know that in Australia..the government has allowed extra tax excemptions for couples going in for 2nd child. Plus extra weekly allowances for their childern.

This is their way to encourage/tempt married/non-married couples to have more children.

The comments to this entry are closed.