Woman in Nature
- :Shahid Murtaza Mutahhari
As for the first point, we do not think that it is debatable. Everybody who has made some study in this respect knows that the differences between man and woman are not confined to their reproductive systems. The only question is whether or not these differences affect the determination of their rights and obligations.
The European scientists and investigators have thrown ample light on the first point, and their deep biological, psycho-logical and sociological studies have not left the least doubt about it. But what has not attracted enough attention of these scholars is the fact that the differences between man and woman affect their family rights and obligations, and place them in dissimilar positions with regard to each other.
The world famous French physiologist, surgeon and biologist, Alexis Carrel, in his very excellent book, 'Man, the Unknown Being' admits that, according to the law of creation, man and woman have been created differently, and that their differences make their rights and obligations different.
In this book he has included a chapter under the heading, Sexual Functions and Genetics". In it he says: "The testicles and the ovaries have vast functions. They not only produce male and female cells, the union of which brings a new human being into existence, but also secrete into the blood those fluids which give male and female characteristics to our feelings and to the tissues and organs of our body. It is the secretion of the testicles that generates boldness, zeal and recklessness. These are the same characteristics which distinguish a fighting bull from an ox. The ovary also affects the woman's being in the same way.
... The difference which exists between man and woman, is not related solely to the shape of their genital organs, or woman's having a uterus and giving birth to children and their special method of education, but is the result of a deeper cause. It emerges from the chemicals which the genital glands secrete into the blood.
It is owing to the disregard of this important point that the supporters of woman's movement think that both the sexes can receive the same kind of education and training and may undertake the same kind of education and training and may undertake the same professions and responsibilities. In fact, woman differs from man in many respects. Every cell of the human body and all the organic systems, especially the muscular system, are stamped with the mark of sex. The physiological laws also, like astronomical laws, are stable and unalterable. Human tendencies can have no effect on them. We have to accept them as they are. The women should try to develop their own talents and should advance in the direction which suits their innate character, without blindly imitating men. It is their duty to make a greater contribution than man, to the development of humanity. They should not take their duties lightly".
Carrel, after explaining the development of spermatozoon and ovum and the way their union takes place, points out that the existence of female is necessary for procreation, but not the existence of a male. He adds that pregnancy completes the body and the soul of a woman. In the end of the chapter he says: "We should not visualise for young girls the same way of thinking, the same kind of life and the same aspirations and ideals as we normally visualise for young boys. The education and training experts must keep in view the organic and psychological differences and natural functions of man and woman. Attention to this basic point is of the utmost importance for the future of our civilisation".
As you may observe, this great scientist lays stress on many differences between man and woman and believes that these differences place them in dissimilar positions.
In the following chapter also, we shall quote the views of the scientists on this point, and then we shall come to the conclusion in what respects man and woman have similar capabilities and needs, and hence should have similar rights and obligations, and in what respects they have dissimilar positions and hence should have dissimilar rights and obligations.
That part of the book will be most important for the study and determination of the family rights and obligations of man and woman.
Adapted from the book: "Woman and Her Rights" by: "Shahid Murtaza Mutahhari"
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