Women, Buddhism and non-religion

Great article by Brad Warner on women and religion. To start off with, I was never a fan of Brad Warner. That is until recently. I tend to dislike when people add “Zen” to everything that they could possibly imagine (ie. Zen and Marketing, the Zen of Selling) and I sort of lumped Brad into that group.

I was mistaken but the thought of a Zen-punk sub-culture still irked me. However, Brad’s writing is succinct and understandable and I tend to enjoy most of it. This one in particular was on the mark since Buddhism (especially in the west) has had a long and complicated history in relation to female monks, which were usually segregated from the men in monastaries but accorded the same level of respect (unlike Christian nuns which are usually considered lower in “rank” than a priest who is usually male).

This is besides the point though. His article is linked below. It is a great read.

…with another good blog on female monks (Bhikkhuni) mostly from the Theravada tradition.

and to end with a Dogen quote from the 13th century from the Shobogenzo

Dogen goes on to say, “Even in China, there was a stupid monk who made the
following vow: ‘Through every life, in every age, I shall never look at a woman.’ Upon what morality is this vow based? What wrong is there in a woman? What virtue is there in a man? Among bad people there are men who are bad people. Among good people there are women who are good people.”