First superpower: Motherhood. This puts women in a higher pedestal than men hand hands down. Let us look at a simple situation. I have flu, a foreign organism is trying to invade my system and my body fights back. My body suffers, I feel weak but the symptoms and time period of my illness is short. Now when I entered my mothers womb, I started growing, thriving and sapping her of her energy and nutrients. Of course the pregnancy journey would have been joyous when it is the result of consummation of love. But the mental, emotional and physical toll on mothers for nine whole months must have been very difficult to handle. The excruciating pain during labor and childbirth is visible from the trembling hands and terror filled eyes of the father of the child holding the mothers hand. We men can never fully comprehend what a woman goes through during pregnancy and childbirth. We are grateful for what you do. But that is only beginning of a mother’s job. Mothers are the first institution we were enrolled into and mothers play a huge role in molding the character and habits of young impressionable minds. It’s a 24 by 7, 365 day job with no sick leave and work during vacation time too. It is only in the last 100 years that men have at least partly taken responsibility in the nurturing of children. Women have been therefore been directly responsible for the shaping the history of the world.
Second superpower: Backbone of the success of men. All great scientists, leaders, businessmen have the backing of some extraordinary woman either as a mother or as a wife, who provides the emotional balance at home and support necessary to achieve greatness in work. Two of the most successful commanders of all time, Alexander the Great and Napoleon Bonaparte were greatly influenced by their mothers. Alexander grew up hearing from his mother that he was greater than normal men and that he was going to conquer the world and Napoleon’s mother never taught him to be afraid of anything. In our own time, listen to what Barack Obama has to tell about his wife’s contribution to his life: “Obviously I couldn’t have done anything that I’ve done without Michelle. . . . not only has she been a great first lady, she is just my rock. I count on her in so many ways every single day.” Despite these influences, the notion that a woman’s primary role is to make babies and take care of them is still prevailing in many parts of the world. This medieval thought has to be uprooted from humanity’s consciousness.
Gift1: Beauty and grace. For sure beauty is only skin deep and at least physical beauty is fading with time. For example, no body could look at Mila Kunis, Priyanka Chopra or Keira Knightly without skin, could we? Yet men fall everyday since eons to natural grace, dignity and beauty of woman. So many songs and poetry would have been lost to the world if not for women. Everywhere in the world many a song is based on a man expressing or celebrating his love for a woman. Let us not forget that crucial to plotline of two of the greatest epics created by humanity Odyssey and Ramayana depend on a man desiring someone else’s wife mesmerized by her beauty. Thank you for great literature too.
Gift2: Great Philosophy. Nobody knows how many men philosophers have been created by unrequited love or separation from their ladylove by break up or death. If this sounds funny or farfetched, let me just give you a prominent example. The Divine Comedy written by Dante Alighieri describes the soul’s journey towards God through Hell, Purgatory and Paradise and also describes God and the seven deadly sins. This work is regarded as one of the most inspired works ever penned by man. A major inspiration for Dante was a Florentine woman whom he had met in childhood and admired from afar in the mode of the then fashionable courtly love tradition. But she married someone else and died at a young age of 24. Regardless, Dante held her in high esteem and even though he was married to another woman, he included Beatrice in the last part of Divine Comedy and describing her as his salvation because according to him she was a paragon of virtue and purity.
Gift3: Contributing to world economy and alleviating hunger. If women didn’t love shopping imagine how many industries will close down? How many malls will have to shut down? How many people will lose jobs and how many children will go hungry? Thank you for shopping to your heart’s content and making the world a better place.
Gift4: Making the world a livelier place to live. It is true on average women speak more words than men. That is only because we men are focused listening and meditating on the inner meaning of your words. True story. But anyways thank you to women and children for making the world livelier and colorful with your voices.
While I have only listed women in supportive roles, that is not the whole story. History of the world, is also of Joan of Arcs’ and Jhansi Rhanis’ and of Marie Curies’ and the Rosalind Franklins’, who had to fight against tough odds in a male dominated world to come out on top. Increasingly CEOs, COOs and CFOs of many multinational companies are women nowadays. Working moms of today have much more difficult schedules and choices to make than President Obama. But if I were to describe all the contributions of women in this article, we would already reach the next International Women’s’ Day.
Only a world, where the masculine and feminine aspects of humanity are treated equal will be harmonious and progressive. It is the duty of every man and woman to work towards this, if we want our future generations to inherit a better world than ours. Thank you to all the women in my life. Love you all. Happy International Women’s day.