Sunday, February 22, 2009

Nuns - Innocents Sentenced for Life time imprisonment by the Church.

Dr Sister Jesme's autobiography has been a huge embarrassment for the Church in kerala. I have very high regards for this bold lady who challenged the mighty church by revealing bitter truths. In her book she has narrated even the personal trauma and shame she faced during her days as a nun. Church has been under severe criticism, after few priests were accused of murder of sister Abhaya. This one adds on to the numerous allegations against the church, which always managed to ridicule allegations by its political power and its influence over the mainstream media.

The life of a nun is not an easy one especially inside the huge walls of churches. Most nuns in kerala join the church in their early ages. It may not be their personal choice, most of the time it will be their parents and the family who decide that the girl should go to church and become the bride of jesus.

Imagine the mind state of that girl who will be alienated from her family and asked to live a life which is as good as a life term (even murders come out after 15 years). Will they not have normal feelings and emotions associated with girls of their age group? Who is benefiting by wiping colours off their dreams of life.

The church has a meticulous system to brainwash girls from a very young age and motivate them to become nuns, obviously with the full support of the family. The systemic brainwash might work for some, and they live a life without ambitions
for the rest of their life. But mother nature has created all of us with instincts. Even after decades of brainwashing, the normal human instincts may still prevail. Lesbian tendency among nuns is mentioned in her book,which is not a surprise at
all. This is not just about sexual needs, even nuns wish for love,care and support from someone. Deprived of almost every mode of entertainment, nuns are supposed to live like aliens from some other planet. Isn't this human rights violation? Its
like chopping a bird's wings before it could fly around to see the beauty of this world. How can a progressive society like us support church to deny basic human rights for these sisters. Isn't this talibanisation? what is the difference between the taliban in afpak and one of the highest literate society in India? Where are those human rights activists and feminists who shed tears for Muslim girls suffering in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Are they blind to ignore the sexual assault on nuns by the priests Or is it coz they are not powerful enough to raise their voice against the church? It is
coz Gandhi notes have power to block the even the so called, 'secular' voices, and the church has bundles of them.

I do not believe in superpowers. But if there is a god, he has created all of us with almost the same set of basic emotions, feelings and instincts. Denying the instincts is denial of God. Nuns are advised to live isolated from main stream to concentrate on community initiatives to uplift the society. There are people who have showed the world that family life is not a hindrance for community services. Community services is a mask anyways. The hidden agenda of religious conversions is not a secret any more. Churches get foreign funding (They might have targets to achieve as well!!) which is used to bribe tribal leaders for mass conversions. All in the name of
Jesus! Most of the educational institutions run by church are cash cows. A new business model adopted by Mata Amritanandamayi is actually copied from church. Community services is just a marketing initiative to turn the attention of the public and media.

There are similarities between a nun and a Devadasi. They both are wedded to 'Gods'. Both are exploited by established systems, nuns by churches and devadasis by the priests. Both of them are isolated from main stream. The stupid system of devadasis was stopped by law. Christian missionaries have played active part in eradicating the cruel and inhuman system of Devadasis. But ironically they do not notice that the church is also involved in a similar crime.

Last year there was an mms of a nun from aluva circulated by some lunatics in internet. After media reports church expelled the nun. Media covered it extensively and gave importance to the nun's expulsion. But they missed one important point, who is the culprit? Is that the driver who exploited the lady's love or the nun who gave everything to him trusting his love. According to me, the man has to be pelted with stones. She shouldn't be ashamed of herself, instead she should be proud that she followed her instincts. Heaven is for those who follow instincts as instincts are directly from god which has greater sense than the stupid system laid by his 'middle men'. I hope the society will open its eyes to this heinous system and free those sisters from the iron walls of Church.


scorpiogenius said...

Man, you've chose to write on one explosive area... Kudos!

The Abhaya story, the Quilon episode and the Aluva incidents are putting up some serious questions on the Church. But its always been like that, people forget that nuns and priests are plain humans like all of us and the criticisms aimed at them have many times been unfair, rude and depressing.

People working for the well-being of mankind could at least be shown some respect, at least in words. As you've told that driver who chose to toy with a lady's life has got away, while she received the wrath of the whole population.

Well, thats how the world goes, doesnt it?

Ajith said...

@scorpio - I knw this is a forbidden area! Thanks for ur support.
And yes, this is an unfair world.

Anonymous said...


Having been brought up in Kerala, I wish there were more MEN like u. Seriously!


Ajith said...

@Gayatri - thnks for the comment, I am sure those MEN will wake up very soon :)

Anonymous said...

An interesting read. The nun issue is highly debatable, but I would not say that all missionary institutions have hidden agendas or have attention diverting market initiatives. I am still wondering what made Dr.Jesme to continue on being a nun while she was being harassed or rather exploited in such a manner. Not read the book yet, maybe she has an answer there..

Ajith said...

@ Seema - Nuns will not get an option to go back home. If they go back their family will be kicked out of the church and they will be socially isolated. There are so many unwritten rules for the church.
I know there are missionaries which has done commendable social work, but unfortunately most of them have an agenda. They do social work on the poorest sections of the society. But the primary aim is always spreading the religion. The social work is only a way to achieve the ultimate aim.

Happy Kitten said...

Ahh. Ajith.. the passion shows in your writings... you would do anything to free them..

I do agree that the majority of them would have resigned to their fates since they had no other choice. It would have been a choice between a life ridden with poverty and maybe even shame… but joining a nunnery promised them a different life.( at least to the parents who took the decision on their behalf). I do not think every parent who gave up their daughter to a nunnery did it for God.. the decision would have been made due to financial reasons.. For the parent it meant that their daughter would be better sheltered and maybe better fed too and would also have a better dignity in the society. Behind the nunnery things could be different but sitting outside the parents at least had the false sense of satisfaction.. at least they did not have to kill their daughters during birth.

So Ajith,, in the end it all comes to the same old issue that faces our Indian society.. poverty. If these girls and their parents have a choice they wouldn’t end up in a nunnery. We can liberate them and maybe even bring in a law but can we rehabilitate them all? I doubt..

But then there are many who took up this life voluntarily and in all seriousness and have given good service to the society. Life is full of contradictions.. Even Sister Jesmi does not denounce the whole concept of nun hood (this is what I assume)

As for money.. I think for the Catholic Church it works the other way round at the present times.. I hear India is filling their coffers more than any other country specially since they were heavily penalized with all the court cases that arose due to the child abuse case. As for conversion, it is not their main agenda.. conversion now rests with the new age Churches which springs up each day!

-Poison- said...

holy love...! :-)
looks like all religions have the same skeletons in their closets!

Praveen said...

a totally brave post describing a controversial subject. I donnow what will be the reaction of the 'holier than thou' priests of kerala when they read this article..
really, its time to do away with this shit idea of making a woman a nun..

OG said...

The world is unfair, any person who follows a religion binding himself/herself to every rule is also not living correctly...

I admire her courage.... and I admire her conviction to bring out the truth....

organized religion is always a problem.... whether it be H,C or I.
great article dude

Ajith said...

@HK - Yes, I will do anything to free them.
Poverty is definitely one of the reasons, but the church exploited their desperate situation.
Nun hood - Why do we still have that concept? I cant find any difference between talibanised girls and our very own nuns. Is'nt it true that they are not allowed to hear film music? Love for God is alright, but that should not go up to the level of insanity.
Established churches make money through businesses and new ones get money through conversions. There is nothing great about either of them.

Ajith said...

@ Poison - Absolutely, religions are polluting the society. We need people who love each other, and not people who love God and have a mind filled with hatred towards fellow humans.

@Praveen - Thanks for the support and yes its high time we need to stop this stupid system.

@Ajit - agree with u completely, organised religions poses the biggest threat to our society and developement.

Winnie the poohi said...

Agreed wholeheartedly!

I dont understand why to love god .. or serve him you have to deny the basic drives.. which he has placed in you!

OG said...

aliya you are tagged.....

Ajith said...

Winnie - Spot on! We all are normal humans. God will not be pleased if we control those feelings which he himself has given us!

The one who has loved and lost said...

I see that you have already been tagged.
here is one more from me :)
Whenever you have time..

Anonymous said...

thanks for writing about this Ajith

OG or the other Ajit gave the link to this post..:)

glad to see that you have written so clearly about this...
bravo!keep going!

Ajith said...

Indyeah - thanks for the support..:)

Indyeah said...

Thanks Ajith:)

Useless Bugger said...

This is a brilliant post! Excellently written. I totally agree with u.


Useless Bugger said...

Oh, comment moderation. Rats! I didn't notice and thought it didn't go thru first time :-) No wonder, I am a software engineer.

Anonymous said...

Ajith, Came here through other Ajit's blog (The extraordinary guy's).

A very thought provoking write-up. Indyeah also wrote about it couple of days back and I had posted my comments there. I think she posted links to your post later. Didn’t get time to check at that time.

I wonder why such issues are swept under the carpet. Is it because of the gender or religion?

I don't care if it is Hinduism or Christianity or Islam, the rules and regulations which existed before should be changed. Every religion has major portion which indicates direct repression of women, time to change that for betterment of society.

Why does 'karathavu' need a 'manavatti' anyways? Why women should be in purdah? Why women can’t go to Sabarimala when we are allowed at other Lord Ayyappa temples?

Lame stories and rules are still followed without any credibility.

Ajith said...

@Solio - absolutely...The issue is swept under the carpet for the obvious reason - The influence of church over the media and politics.

Women are at the receiving end most of the time, be it nuns, devdasis or muslim girls who've been deprived of education.

The stories about various Gods itself is a work of fiction which lacks any kind of credibility!

gayathri vishwanathan said...

God, awesome post. Seriously I was shocked to read about this in the newspaper. Every religion looks equally tainted...even God must be ashamed of us.

Ajith said...

@ Parikshith - Thanks

Comment moderation is vital in blogging, especially when u touch controversial topics :)

@ Gayatri - Religions are nothing more than today's political parties.

BVG said...

I never really got the idea behind being the “bride” of Jesus. I thought polygamy was not allowed in Christianity. But then Christianity is full of contradictions. It talks of an omnipotent, omniscient, omni benevolent god that needs us to give part of our earnings to it, knows if we will yet has given us freewill, and will send us to a place of eternal unthinkable torture if we misbehave during our puny lives on this insignificant planet that goes around an insignificant star in an insignificant galaxy in a so-far borderless infinite universe. The church will tell you to give money to god, but what they are really telling you is – give money to us. Give money to the church so that you may be let in once a week to attend a bunch of bearded guys in funny costume spew mindless rhetoric in repetitive fashion over and over again to a congregation that is oblivious to both meaning of what’s spat out and reason of being in church.

The church has always indulged in brainwashing and they are very good at it. People believe them blindly to the point of compartmentalizing their brains and giving up all control to bearded bums in flowing robes and black belts over their pot bellies.

These people are oblivious to the feelings of the child they send to a black and white life and value their own pride. People need to wake up a to the injustice and pure torture they put their children through in the name of family pride and “sacrifice for Jesus”. We need to stop giving power to the church.

George said...

Great post man. I am planning to write a post connected to this topic. Please consider the following points as a food for thought.

1) Thousands of students benefits from educational institutions run by the church and associated organizations.

2) Priesthood and nun hood ensures that , there is continuity to these institutions.

3) A minuscule minority prefers this way of life. (Only they are supposed to join)

4) When society advanced and choices became plenty, seminaries and nunneries do not attract the the kind of talent they once used to. These institutions are scrambling hard to find worthy torch bearers. The degradation of the institutions are directly related to the people who are getting in there ("Judge the tree by the fruit")