Thursday, April 11, 2013


OVER PRAYER AT WESTERN WALL - Israeli police on Thursday detained five women at a Jerusalem holy site for performing religious rituals that ultra-Orthodox Jews say are reserved for men. The detentions came just a day after an Israeli organization proposed a compromise to diffuse tensions over the issue of women's worship at the Western Wall. The proposal, which still has to be approved by the government, envisions establishing a new section at the site where men and women can pray together.
About 120 women arrived Thursday morning for their monthly prayer service and police detained five for wearing prayer shawls, said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld. He said they were later released without charge. Rosenfeld said an ultra-Orthodox man was also detained for burning a prayer book in protest and was still in custody.

The Western Wall, the only remaining part of the biblical Temple compound, is the holiest site where Jews can pray. It is currently divided into men's and women's sections. Orthodox rabbis, who control Israel's religious institutions, oppose mixed-gender prayers. In recent months, female worshippers have been detained at the site for wearing religious garments and leading prayers. While most Israelis are secular, Judaism has a formal place in the country's affairs, and Orthodox rabbis govern events such as weddings, divorces and burials for the Jewish population.
The ultra-Orthodox, who follow a strict brand of Judaism that promotes religious studies over work, military service and other involvement in modern society, have traditionally wielded vast political power - although they make up only about 10 percent of the population.

About 120 women arrived for their monthly prayer service at the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, and Israeli police arrested five of them for wearing the tallits (prayer shawls) and tefillin (phylacteries) and for performing religious rituals in a place reserved for men. The site, under strict Orthodox ritual law, bars women from wearing the religious clothing or publicly reading from the holy scriptures and is divided into men's and women's sections. Duality and differences have relevance on this material platform but not on the spiritual one. Everyone is a part and parcel of Krishna; everything - not just men and women - is an emanation of Krishna's energies (material and spiritual ones).

The six Goswamis were dear not only to the other devotees of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu but to the nondevotees as well. A pure devotee’s position is that he has no enemy because he is not envious. A pure devotee is always open to everyone, and he does not discriminate that this person can be allowed to chant Hare Krishna and that person should not be allowed. On the material platform, which is a platform of dualism, there are differences between high and low, man and woman, and this or that, but on the spiritual platform there are no such distinctions. The pure devotee, seeing everything with an equal mind, is therefore nonenvious. Because he is nonenvious, he is worshipable. Indeed, it may even be said that a person is worshipable simply if he is nonenvious, for it is only possible to be nonenvious on the spiritual platform.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
"The Science of Self Realization"
Chapter 8: "Attaining Perfection"
"The Perfection of Self-realization"
Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International

Published by dasavatara das - "Vedic Views on World News"

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