Host: Continuing a conversation about the situation in Afghanistan, during an August 19, 2021 work-related phone call with a Supreme Master Television team member, our Most Beloved Supreme Master Ching Hai graciously elaborated further on the uncertain future for the Afghan women after the Taliban takeover of the country. She also shared more of Her wisdom on the differing aspects of the Western and Taliban systems concerning women.
(Master, what makes the Afghan women so afraid of the Taliban?)
Oh, yes. You should do some research into what the Taliban’s doing to the women all these decades, and then you’ll understand. (OK.) It is not just about being married away to anybody that they have no choice. But it’s about all kinds of things; the women’s rights, women’s dignity, women’s choice.
They are human beings; they are children of God. (Yes.) They cannot be forced, they should not, they must not be forced into any kind of situation that is degrading to their womanhood and motherhood. According to all the reports, they force the women from a young age to middle age, to marry their own soldiers or fighters without their consent. (Yes.) And in the world, if a man forces a woman into this kind of physical relationship, then they are going to jail. (Right.) Because it’s like a sexual assault. Like raping. (Yes, Master.) So, the Taliban is forcing women to go into a relationship with somebody she doesn’t even know, she doesn’t like, she doesn’t love, she has not the same ideal. (Yes, Master.)
The Blessed Prophet Muhammad, Peace Be Upon Him, and the Koran have never taught us to pillage other people’s property – even if you think girls are property! – nor force women into any thing or any relationship against their will, so any Muslim engaged in any kind of activity contrary to this established teaching is betraying the Koran and the great Prophet’s teaching. They should be punished according to Islamic law, not the gentle, innocent faithfuls in the woman form!!! May Allah protect the women, to whom the Holy Koran granted all freedom and respect!
And normally the Taliban emphasizes the ideal; you have to live with an ideal, you fight for your idealism. But like this, they don’t give women any ideal. The women, they have their own ideal. (Yes. Of course.) So, they’re forcing somebody into their own ideal which sooner or later might explode. You never know. The women, they just want to have a normal life, some education so they can contribute to the society and educate their children in the right way. (Yes, of course.) Like this a forced physical relationship will not make a good society at all. Because it will breed countless unhappy women. And unhappy women make unhappy marriages. Unhappy marriages contribute to an unhappy society. I don’t know how any leader or any government would like to lead or to govern such an unhappy, stressed-out society, lamenting inside out like that. (Yes. That’s true.) And that’s not a good policy. (No, no.) They will not be successful governing a whole country full of sorrow. (Yes.) Full of sorrow and unhappiness from inside the family already.
If a woman is not happy, she’s not going to make her husband happy. Forced or not. Because a loveless marriage, an oppressive marriage is no marriage at all. It’s like slavery. (Exactly.) We are in the 21st century already; we don’t have this type of thing. (Yes.) We should not. (Yes.) It’s too backward, too uncivilized, too barbarous to treat a human, a woman with dignity, like that. So, they are scared. Not just that, but it’s against their will, against their ideal, against anything that they are dreaming of or thinking of. (Right. Yes.) Suppose the man reversed their situation, reversed their positions, and became a woman and was forced into this kind of situation, what would he feel? (Yes.) If the Taliban leader was forced to become a woman and just pushed into anybody else’s bed and then do that kind of sexual thing without their consent, what would the leader of the Taliban feel? Do you understand what I’m saying? (Yes, understand, Master.)
They should do things with more consideration, more intelligence, more feeling toward the others, not just themselves. Any government should do that. (Yes, Master.) Women, we want peace. (Yes.) To think the boy has to be raised up and then be another warrior and go out killing again – of course, no mother would like that. (No.) No future mother would like that. No girls would ever dream of a family like that. (No.) That girls would be oppressed without any education at all, and boys go out to be… whatever they name it. (Yes, Master.) And die, horribly, and bring many people to die with him, something like that. That, no woman can accept. No mother would like her son to be one like that. (No.) So that’s why they are afraid of everything. It’s not just about the Taliban. It’s the idea (I see.) behind all that. You got what I’m saying? (Yes, Master.) Anything being coerced, forced, or oppressed, or threatened into cooperation will never go well. (Yes. It’s true.)
Besides, you see we are in the 21st century, women became astronauts, go into space. Women are in the scientific field. (Yes.) Women have invented many things that are beneficial to human beings, animals, and the whole world. (Yes, yes.) And women have become prime ministers, presidents, and leading the world into prosperity. At least their nation. Of course, the world will benefit as well. (Right.)
So, the Afghan women cannot be contented just to stay home and scrub the floor, and always “aye aye, sir.” (Yes.) Even though she has better ideas, she has more intelligence even. (Yes.) Possible that many women have more intelligence than some men. That’s for sure. So, how can? How can any country go forward in that kind of energy, in that kind of situation, that kind of very unhappy atmosphere? (Yes, understand.) Women, they are wise. (They are.) They understand all that. They can see far in the future. It’s not just about themselves that they worry about. (Yes.) They worry about their country, (Yes.) their children, the future of their children. (Right.)
OK. Anything else? (Yes. I was wondering, so, is then the Western society system better or the Taliban one?) You mean in general or for women? (For women.)
OK. Of course, both systems have flaws. Have good and bad. (Yes.) In the Western countries, women are more respected. (Yes.) Almost everywhere are more respected. Like men, equal. They have same jobs. Same salary. Same ambition. Same positions. They can do what they want, provided they have the ability to give. (Yes. True.) But then, we, I mean the Western people, take the freedom too much for granted, too much over the border, (I see.) and forget that they should keep also their own femininity.
For example, something I do not like about Western society is that the girls, they are wearing too short, and baring too much skin. (Yes. I see.) They are flaunting too much of their assets. Baring too much. (Understand. Right.) That may be supposed to be sexy and provocative, but that also, in turn, a lot of times brings disaster for the girl. (Yes. I agree, that’s true.) They provoke the men’s hormones and then make them crazy, and then they will go after them and doing like sexual assault, or rape them, and then sometimes kill them, and that’s not good for the girl at all. (Yes.) Knowing, it’s scientifically indicated that men already have trouble controlling their hormones. (Yes.) That’s why most of them have to marry. Fine, it’s good. But some men are not in a married situation and their hormones are still there, stacking up. So if a woman is more provocative like that, like baring it out and make the man feel even more provoked, their hormones are more raging, stacking up, rising up. (Right.) Then that’s not fair for the man also. (I see. Yes.)
So in society we have many cases of sexual abuse, or rape or related deaths. (Right, they are.) Even within family, that’s no good. I think in the family, parents should teach the children, especially girls, to wear more modestly, more decently. (Yes.) So not to invite trouble. (Right.) If you don’t wear decently and cover yourself more, of course the men or the boys like to look at you, and you feel more proud. But that is not without risk. And also they look at you in a sexually desirous way. It’s not respectful and not love. (Yes, Master.)
Love is different from sex. (Yes.) To love a woman and tenderly have a relationship with her is different than wanting her sexually only. (Yes, it is.) So the women should also keep their own dignity and decency, (Right.) so that she earns respect, and then when she meets a man, he will love her only because of love. (Right.) And sex comes as a second side effect. (Yes.)
Our society should be free, but freedom should be handled with wisdom. (Yes, that’s right.) A woman should be wise enough to protect her own dignity and decency. You have to earn respect from a man before you marry him. (Yes.) It’s better that way; the relationship will be happier and last longer. (Yes.) Because even if you wear sexy clothes and you entice a man for then, then he’s blind and then he marries you, but there are many more sexy girls around, everywhere. (Yes.) And maybe one day you’ll lose, because the relationship is not based on love and respect. (Exactly. Yes.)
And in the Islamic system, there are flaws also. Like the women have to cover themselves from head to toe. (Oh, yes.) And it’s very difficult to see around like that. Some can stumble and fall. (Yes.) Or will not be able to see if danger is coming. (Right.) Like maybe a corner car coming speedily or men approaching her or some robbery of any kind. (Yes.) It’s difficult to be more prepared (True.) in advance, than if she can see better. And at work, if it’s all covered like that, then the ears sometimes go blum blum blum, cannot hear very well, and cannot work very well. (Yes.) And then covered like that, it’s too hot. In some countries, it’s too hot. (Yes, yes. It’s true.) It’s very uncomfortable and it could also breed some illness. Maybe not very fatal, but still it’s not very comfortable for women.
In the Bible of both Christians and Muslims, it also has this, I think, that God made man, made humans in Hiers own image. (Yes.) In Hiers own image made Hes humans. So the human’s face of a woman and a human’s face of a man should not be hidden. (Right.) Because God has given us birth without any cover. (Yes.) And for the sake of decency in the world, then we cover ourselves. But the face should not have to be covered. (Yes.) That’s what my opinion is. But, it’s OK. It’s not the worst thing. (I see.)
Still, it’s very inconvenient for women to take care of many things, to do work, outside the house or inside the house. (Yes, it’s true.) And also taking care, even taking children to school or doing something like that, it’s very inconvenient. A little inconvenient. Not so easy to work with the clothes like that. But in the Western society, they did the opposite and more exaggerating.
So both sides should like compromise and make the best use of both sides, I think it would be the best. (Yes, exactly.) The woman should keep dignity, that’s for sure. But not cover all over like that. Like you are something ugly, something sinful, you have to hide. (Yes, understand. Yes. Thank You.)
Also, for this system, sometimes, you never know if underneath the burqa is a man or a woman. If a man, if he has bad intentions, he could be hiding something underneath the burqa. Pretending to be a woman and can harm somebody or can harm some of the government persons, in an assassinating scheme and all that. (Yes, Master.)
So, moderate, I think, is the core, (Right.) is the best solution for any country, especially for women.
So, if we oppress half of the society’s population, meaning women, then we might lose talents, exceptional talents like scientists, astronauts, physicists, teachers, Masters, spiritual guides, presidents or prime ministers, etc. (Right.) We might lose so much, so much talent and workforce by eliminating women in any society. (Understand.)
Women should be given the opportunity, like men, to develop their potential, (Definitely.) in order to help the world. God knows we need more wise humans to lift our world into a better situation.
Also, don’t forget that women are the mothers of all the Prophets, all the Masters that have ever graced our planet, and the mothers of all presidents, prime ministers, great leaders, virtuous statesmen of all time, up to now and also in the future. So, we have to respect women. Women have to be protected and respected. And their dignity must be protected, must be respected, so that our world can function. Without women, we don’t have the world that we have now, we don’t have humanity. (Yes, Master.)
The thing is, there’s another side effect of women oppression or forbidding, is that I think the men, in that situation or in that country, are afraid of women. That’s why they try so hard to suppress them. My suspicion. They know women are so clever and so successful if they focus on something, instead of just scrubbing the floor and cleaning the pots. So they try to suppress them, so that women become helpless, useless, and like a slave under the dictator of the man. You understand what I’m saying? (I see.)
(Sources: WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA: Some Facts about Violence against Women and Girls
- Globally, 1 in 3 women, or 736 million, have experienced physical and/or sexual violence.
- As many as 38% of murders of women worldwide are perpetrated by a male partner.
- An estimated 5,000 women globally are murdered by family members each year in so-called “honor” killings.
- 200 million women and girls living today have suffered from female genital mutilation.
- 1 in 5 women globally (650 million alive today) were forced to marry as children, before age 18.
- 126 million girls are “missing” from the world’s population as victims of female infanticide, malnutrition, neglect, etc.
- Two-thirds of the world’s illiterate are female.
- 82% of women parliamentarians in five regions reported enduring some form of psychological violence, including sexist remarks, mobbing and death threats.)
I do feel how they feel. I feel their suffering, I feel their pain, I feel their desperation, the whole world. I feel the animals’ anguish, I feel everything. That’s why I suffer also. (Understand, Master.)
All right, my love. God bless you. (God bless Master.) God bless all of you, the Supreme Master TV workers and supporters around the world, initiates or non-initiates. God bless our world. (Thank You, Master.) God bless all the leaders to see the logic and reason. May God enlighten them all.
Host: Most Benevolent Master, we are grateful for Your unwavering, deep Care and loving Advocacy for those experiencing turmoil now, especially the vulnerable and oppressed. Our hearts are in prayer for the women, as well as other fellow beings on our planet, who have yet to secure peace and freedom as their birthright. May the day come soon when everyone shall live as dignified and equally respected world citizens. Wishing Beloved Master to be always well and tranquil, ever safeguarded by all Heavenly Godses.
Watch the full broadcast of this phone call on Saturday, September 4, to know what Master has to say to the Taliban.