Adultery Chains and Torn Blood. A true Story: MINE.

When I was still a student in university, I once received an email with a PowerPoint document attached to it. It showed pictures of beautiful butterflies, but the story was a sad one. It was the story of a butterfly which was on its way to get out of its cocoon. A man, who saw the butterfly getting out of its cocoon slowly, thought the butterfly was in difficulties, and he wanted to help the butterfly by tearing the cocoon for it. Instead of getting out of the cocoon in good shape, the butterfly instead was ill and couldn’t develop itself properly. The moral of the lesson was that by wanting to help people in need, most of the time human people commit a lot of mistakes and put the needy people in danger instead, and that the human being should let the other people making their own efforts instead to obtain triumph from their difficulties. In this story, the human had good intentions towards the butterfly but did a wrong thing by helping it in its efforts to come into life. But in my own life I was surrounded with humans who pretended to help me in my difficulties but who abused of my weakness. I also was surrounded by predators who didn’t allow me to do my own efforts to succeed in life, but instead who barred my efforts by making the efforts for me and making of me totally dependent from them. In both circumstances though, I became like that poor butterfly and I am recovering with lots of difficulties.

I decided tonight to break the silence, because I arrived at a point of my life, further to the experiences that I have been living as a child and also as a newly parent, on how traumatic it is to be a married couple and parents, especially when you grow up within the Mauritian and Hindu cultures.

Since in Mauritius, about 80% of Mauritians have Hindu inheritance, the principles that they follow within the family and social circle is exactly the same as in India, where all decisions regarding the married couple and their roles as new parents depend a lot on the family culture, religious beliefs and traditions. My husband and I have passed through that, and I decided, after such deep reflections and meditations about this, to break the silence once for all about that matter. First of all, let me give you an overview about our family backgrounds.

AN OVERVIEW ON MY HUSBAND’S POOR BUT BALANCED FAMILY BACKGROUND VS MY RICH BUT DISORDERED FAMILY BACKGROUND

My husband comes from a purely Indo-Mauritian family. They were about 13 people in the household, since they lived in poor conditions, when my in-laws got married. Since my mother-in-law was the very first sister-in-law of the family, and since my father-in-law was the eldest son of the family, they had to sacrifice their youth to help their parents in the household and bend under the patriarchal elders’ traditions. As per the first daughter-in-law of the family, like in every poor traditional Hindu families, my mother-in-law had to cook food, do the chores and look after not only her husband and children, but also after all the other family members in the household. Her life wasn’t easy at all. She had to wear the sari all the time, light the fire by blowing in a sort of wooden branch that they called “Poukni” and cook food and chapati for everyone, especially for one of her brothers-in-law, who was the only one in the family who was working and earning money for everyone, but who had a very strong ego, since he wanted to be the only one in the family to have power and to be the prodigy of the family. My husband and his elder brother were born and brought up not only by their parents, but even by all the people in the household, who all contributed into their welfare and education, since my mother-in-law had to look after all those people at the same time, bear their caprices, critics, family pressure, humiliations and even so many huge fights with her husband, during which her husband didn’t even hesitate to raise his hand and abuse of her physically over her. Even my husband and his brother faced the same situation for so many years. Unfortunately, even after marriage and after having become a father, my brother-in-law kept on bearing that pressure over his shoulders, but my husband had the chance to escape from that hell, since he had the opportunity to work overseas for more than a decade during all his professional career. That helped him a lot overcoming those burdens and rebuilding himself, but the scars of the past are still present and I can still feel fear within his eyes when he expresses himself. My husband had another burden to bear over his shoulders: As the first grandchild of the family in the third generation of the patriarch, he had not only to be a good-mannered boy with a successful career and education, but he also had to be a prodigy and a role model for all the other little cousins who would be born within that household after him so that they would all follow his steps! But as he is very kind-hearted, he didn’t mind about it since he is very close to his cousins, but that was a very pricky situation. Moreover, despite the ups and downs in the family, they all followed the same family rules, rites, rituals and traditions together for years, and even though some of our rituals in our marriage life changed a lot, my husband still kept on following the family traditions even at home though we live away from my in-laws and they have been living in a united family with strong educational skills and strict discipline and life principles.

MY FATHER’S FIRST MARRIAGE

My case was the total opposite from my husband’s family. As I mentioned before, I was born from a Hindu Mauritian father and a Creole Mauritian mother. Even though my two respective patriarchal and matriarchal families strictly followed their own principles, I was torn between two kinds of cultures, religious beliefs, rites and rituals which never matched with each other and which made me completely lost. My father was completely indifferent about my orientation, whereas my mother forced me to follow her principles. Contrary to the paragraph that I wrote for my husband’s family, I won’t be as long since I already mentioned about them before in some of my previous posts, such as the struggles I faced with my mother when I wrote about Naomi Campbell’s overreactions and controversies and the link I found between her and me, the way I decided to forgive my father, even though I blame him for not having been a good father enough for me, the struggles I have been facing regarding my financial situation, the struggles I have been facing regarding the fight that both my husband and I did to have a child, some people among my family members who stooped so low by betraying me and abusing of the trust that I had in them, and many more posts that I wrote again as fragments of my life. But what I never mentioned was about my parents and their ugly past, because I was too ashamed about talking about them, and I kept on making everyone tired about always repeating the same thing, but this time I won’t keep silent anymore and through this you will understand why marriage life and parenthood are two journeys that a couple should afford ALONE.

Before being married to my mother, my father was married to another lady whom he had two children with. She was a Christian from Kerala and as per what I heard about her, she was a very kind nature and beautiful nature. However it seemed that my father isolated her a lot and never let her befriending the patriarchal family, and she always had to stay away from everyone and be alone at home raising two children and doing all her stuffs on her own. Even though my father pampered her materially and financially, she never had the affection that she should have had from a husband. Also, in a moment of weakness, she started an affair with the personal chauffeur of the family, whom my father engaged to help her going for all her displacements and trips, which lasted for a long time. My father’s elder brother (who was my mother-in-law’s father too, and later I will explain you how it came like that) warned my father to be very careful and to have an eye on his wife, since she was betraying him with their chauffeur. My father thought that his elder brother was acting as a troublemaker in his family life and he menaced my uncle to go away from the house, menacing him with a gun! But one night after a hard day in hospital, where my father was doing his internship, when he reached back home, he surprised both his wife in bed with the personal chauffeur and he threw them out of the house!

Meanwhile, since my patriarchal half-brother and my patriarchal half-sister were still young, my father had no other choice than asking his wife to come back, since there was no one to look after them. But in parallel, he acknowledged my mother at the airport while both of them were respectively returning to Mauritius and while they were still waiting for their luggage to come. My father saw my mother being embarrassed with her heavy luggage and also he helped her and she thanked him. Another day, while my father was in cinema with my patriarchal half-brother, he again met my mother there. Then something started to happen between the both of them and my father even mentioned to his son that he wanted to remarry my mother. Since my patriarchal half-brother was still young, he couldn’t take a strong decision regarding my parents and didn’t know what to reply to him. My parents then started dating in secret, until my father’s first wife came to know about their affair and decided to expel my father out of the house, and both filed for divorce, and his first wife (now ex-wife) had the two children’s custody for a couple of years. As per what I have heard, it seemed that the two children suffered heavily from their mother’s educational system, since as per what I have heard, Christian ladies from Kerala were reputed in the 60s or 70s to be rough and rude in their children’s education. It seemed that she once forced my half-brother, who was only 5 years old, to clean all a chicken coop with his two tiny hands! I tried to do some researches about those kind of Christian Kerala women but unfortunately failed into looking for something to justify that strict culture. Anyway, that was what I was informed about my my half-brother and his ex-wife and those were the only references I had. But during all those years with their mother, bearing such an excessive strict education, my half-siblings started badly missing our father, and then they decided one day to fugue and to go to Mauritius to stay besides their father, where they hoped they would feel some love and re-comfort. They succeeded arriving at the nearest railway station, where they would catch the train which would drive them from Kerala to New Delhi, for afterwards catching a plane which would bring them back to Mauritius, since my half-brother, while studying, was also working hard to earn some money to help his mother and to assure his own education and the education of his little sister, and they could leave India forever thanks to his savings. However, their mother succeeded into catching them back at the railway station, and she even tried hard to pull back my half-brother while he was helping my patriarchal half-sister embarking with their luggage, but he succeeded into escaping from her pressure, since the train was going away for never returning those two young children again. They thought that at least in Mauritius they would have peace forever. Their happiness was unfortunately as fake as fantasy jewellery with platter gold. You will know why, when I will tell you the background of my mother.

MY MOTHER, HER DISASTROUS FIRST MARRIAGE AND HER PRESENCE MARKING THE BEGINNING OF SO MANY FAMILY DISASTERS

My mother, who was raised in a 5-children Roman Catholic Creole family from Mauritius, was received at the same time a strict education because of her father, and at the other time an education based on amusement, entertainment but with strong family bonds. Contrary to my father, who had a brilliant career and became one of the best doctors of the country, like I related in my “Confessions from a Miseducated Girl“, as per what I heard, it seemed that my mother failed in her Higher School Certificate due to an accident she made on her bicycle, but I don’t know though whether she was telling the truth or not. My mother experienced a first marriage with another Roman Catholic young Creole man, who was working as a lecturer in a government school in the locality they came from. My mother was only 18 years old and together they had a daughter, who was a couple of months younger than my patriarchal half-sister. I don’t know though where the truth is because both my matriarchal half-sister and my mother gave me two different versions on how the relationship between our mother and her first husband split. As per my mother, her first husband kept on humiliating her all the time and abusing of his authority over her, and when she acknowledged my father, my father gave her a choice between bearing her first husband or coming with him… and she chose my father, of course! It seemed that she even tried so many times to write to her daughter so many letters, which my matriarchal half-sister never received since it seems they were intercepted by other people, and that her first husband closed the door to my mother’s nephews and nieces, whom she sent to fetch her daughter since she wanted to see her again, and that her husband refused to receive them and didn’t want his daughter to have any contact with her matriarchal family. But the version that my matriarchal half-sister gave me was completely different, and seemed to me more plausible. As per her own version, there was absolutely nothing wrong in their relationship, but it was my mother who was excessively authoritarian and aggressive since she was all the time unsatisfied with her husband and her marriage life, since they were renting a house and that they were living in modest conditions. When she came to acknowledge my father, who was having a comfortable earning, her greed for lust and money increased and then she started betraying her husband with my father in secret while her husband was at work. When my matriarchal half-sister started to know about that adultery relationship, she was only 6 years old but was too young to understand what was really happening and my mother acted as if everything was normal. She even received so many lovely saris through a maid and often met my father, who came to fetch her in a red car he parked behind the bamboo fence. Things went on like this for a long time, until one evening, while my matriarchal half-sister and her father came back home, all my mother’s personal belongings completely disappeared, since she suddenly deserted the family house! They panicked at such a way that they looked for her everywhere and even filed a case to the police station. They looked for her everywhere among the family members but no one dared telling the truth, at the exception of my mother’s elder uncle, who is also my godfather, and who had the courage to reveal that my mother escaped with my father and that they went together to Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean! My mother’s first husband was so devastated that he suffered from severe depression and remarried another person, but who was never of support for my half-sister. They filed for divorce, and the fact that the divorce was filed under purpose of adultery by my mother inevitably made that she lost total custody for her daughter.

My parents got married, and I never even knew that they did a Hindu marriage before, nor that my mother followed Hinduism, since there were no pictures of their Hindu marriage at home, nor of them following Hindu rituals together, until I came to know about it only in year 2007 when I was already 26 years old and already had 2 years marriage with my husband! Then my mother mentioned that she couldn’t bear anymore to keep on following Hinduism and she went back to her Christianity, which she fully followed, and they then contracted the Anglican marriage, since my father converted in Anglicanism while still being in Kerala and when he acknowledged his first wife, though he kept his Hindu rituals alive. When my half-brother and my patriarchal half-sister came back to Mauritius from Kerala, they acknowledged their new stepmother, who came back meanwhile from Reunion Island. My mother though, for reasons that only she knows and which are totally eccentric, tainted her hair in red and, since she was fair-skinned, she pretended that she came from Reunion Island and even made everyone in the patriarchal family believing the same thing… And everyone blindly believed her, and I don’t know how my siblings came to know about the truth regarding her family background and that she was a simple Creole Mauritian living in a low class city-state. As per what I heard, she looked after my father’s children very well like a loving and caring mother much more than a loving and caring stepmother, but since she never had a son, she made a lot of discrimination between my half-brother and my patriarchal half-sister, since she was mostly defending my half-brother’s interests, while my father mostly defended his little daughter’s interests. None of my parents did even try to arrange a sort of golden mean between the two children to put them in total agreement, and that kind of discrimination especially started when my mother entered the family, whereas such discrimination never happened in the past before my mother came in their lives. That created a lot of clashes between my half-brother and my mother, especially when my half-brother started experiencing young love and accumulating a lot of girlfriends, but things got even worse when my half-brother decided to marry his latest girlfriend in the 80s after so many years of relationship together. Since my half-brother and his future wife did everything on their own for the civil marriage, since my half-brother wanted to settle in Reunion Island, where his future wife was originated from, and then planned for the religious marriage being performed by their respective parents, my mother never accepted that they married in secret and she made a huge scandal which forced my half-brother and his wife performing the religious marriage only in presence of my then new sister-in-law’s family only and in Reunion Island and even renting a house with nothing in their bank account, since my then sister-in-law was coming herself from a poor family, whereas my half-brother was disinherited by my father in exchange of a plot of land that my half-brother asked our father to assign to our father to be able to build his own house! And it seemed that this condition was signed blindly by my half-brother, since he was in a desperate financial situation and indebted, until one of his good friends, who was an attorney, came to discover about that document! My half-brother was devastated but had no other choice than to accept such an injustice. Meanwhile, while his house was under construction, my mother, who never digested that relationship, not only because things were made behind her back, but also because her own ego was hurt, since she was an extremely possessive stepmother for my half-brother and always competed with his fiancee, as if she was secretly in love with my half-brother and wanted to keep him prisoner for herself. It’s years after that my matriarchal half-sister suspected about that insane feeling within my mother’s mind towards my half-brother, and when I once talked about that suspicion with my mother-in-law, she mentioned that in especially lots of Hindu families, such cases where stepmothers fall in love with their stepsons exist and that it’s a common case. And when my half-brother asked for having that plot of land, then my mother decided to revenge to break their marriage life and she used black magic to do it. Black magic is something unfortunately very common within the Mauritian folklore, where so many people call for Sorcerers or Witches to do devilish black magic works to destroy other people’s lives and to revenge from other people. I was only 7 years old and all the time playing on my bicycle at home, but I very often saw a Tamil priest who was coming to our place to do some strange incantations in the small living room with my parents, but I never came to know the meaning of those rituals, and never even asked any questions, since I was too young to understand what was happening. I also saw my mother going very often, either by taxi, or with my father in his car, in a little Kalimaye, which is a small Hindu Temple dedicated to Goddess Kali, where they used to go every Tuesday and sometimes every Friday at noon to perform some rituals dedicated to Kali Maa. Once more I ignored in which purposes they were doing that together and never asked any questions about it. Then after so many years, when my own marriage life and family was endangered, I came to discover, after a series of testimonies from several friends and family members and a series of surveys that both my husband and I did together to save our couple, that my mother did all those rituals to break my half-brother’s marriage and never allow him having children, since my ex-sister-in-law couldn’t infant for so many years until she obtained a protection from a priest which allowed her to become a mother at her turn. Unfortunately, since my half-brother and his wife didn’t perform any prayers correctly, the rituals that my mother performed brought their ugly fruits. My half-brother started betraying several times his wife, there were lots of fights in their couple life for years, and among my half-brother’s mistresses there was… my matriarchal half-sister, who herself was married to someone else! I will talk about her sudden comeback in the next paragraph. But all that mess made that after 16 years of marriage and 2 children, my half-brother and his wife filed for divorce and my half-brother was already dating someone else for 6 years, until she herself was fed up of the pressure she felt for being an intrude for my half-brother’s family and that she decided to move away and marry someone from a normal family background, whom she had a son with. However, my half-brother and his ex-wife keep a good relationship together, and my ex-sister-in-law even wanted to keep a good relationship with her ex-in-laws for the sake of her children, but she couldn’t accept my half-brother’s new and actual relationship with one of his childhood girlfriends and even created some mess in it.

MY BIRTH AND MY TORN RELATIONSHIP WITH MY HALF-SIBLINGS, RELATIVES AND PARENTS

I was then born from that remarriage, unfortunately based over adultery, mostly caused by my mother. This created a lot of tautness within the family, since I was silently disliked by so many family members, who were very jealous of the rich financial background in which my parents brought me up, and also since they secretly disliked me for being the fruit of an adultery marriage. I was supposed to have a younger brother in April 1986 but he was an unborn child, and I was never aware about my mother’s second pregnancy until I discovered by hazard some pictures coming from the X Ray scan showing my little unborn brother within my mother’s womb😦 But in another hand, I am happy though that my little brother never survived, because at least God took him back with Him to avoid that he would suffer the big hell that I had to bear until I would get married at my turn. My patriarchal half-sister became my Godmother, since I was baptised Roman Catholic instead of Anglican, which is my father’s religion I was supposed to take, and which was a proof that my mother’s authority was stronger than my father’s authority in the family. I never thought, when I was born, that my life could have become so disastrous, and if God kept me alive instead of taking me back with Him to be in peace besides my unborn little brother, it seemed that He had other plans for me.

Previously, I wrote a blog post where I described myself as a bully at school, but as a golden child in my family. This was the kind of education that my parents gave me and I thought that it was for my welfare that they were doing that to me. But in reality, they influenced me to be a perfect child to help them covering completely their previous sins and to make everyone forgetting, through that so-called perfect education, that I was in reality the fruit of a marriage based on an adultery basis. What is funny is that I was raised as a Roman Catholic since I was young and that my mother was extremely religious. I was never taught adultery when I was a child and I was always preached the Holy Word from the Holy Bible, including one of the 10 Commandments of Moses, stipulating that “Thou shalt not commit adultery”. But when I turned 7 years old, I had the biggest surprise of my life when one afternoon, my matriarchal half-sister stepped in front of the door of our house with her fiancee and her future in-laws, and how she was received with wide open arms and screams of joy coming from both herself and my mother. I never understood the relationship between the both of them and at first thought that she was just a very good friend whom my mother lost contact with for several years. But through time and space I came to know that she was my matriarchal half-sister, whereas during all those years I completely ignored that my mother had someone else before my father in her life! I always thought that my half-brother and my patriarchal half-sister were the only family I had, and that despite our differences of skin colour – they were brown-skinned whereas I am fair-skinned – they were really my brother and my sister completely. Skin colour was never a matter on which I questioned myself regarding them because my father himself is brown-skinned, several of my relatives from both matriarchal and patriarchal families are brown-skinned and also I never asked myself how I could be different. But then the sudden arrival of my matriarchal half-sister in my mother’s life completely changed things and brought into my mind some questions which I never thought that one day I would ask to my mother: Is my father my matriarchal half-sister’s father too? That was one of the questions I asked my mother. She replied: No, your father is your half-sister’s stepfather. Her father is someone else. Then I came to understand that my mother was married to someone else before marrying my father! Only God knows how I made my mind working so much, but when I came to know that my mother was married to someone else before knowing my father, I then wondered whether even my father had someone in his life before my mother too… And yes, he had his first wife from Kerala, which meant that my half-brother and my patriarchal half-sister were also my half-siblings and not my complete siblings! My father felt extremely embarrassed when I asked him why he left his first wife, whereas my mother reacted very aggressively and used harsh words to make me accepting the situation as it is and to forbid me to ask any other questions again about their past. But since I was just 7 years old, I had no other options than to obey my parents.

I already wrote previously what happened to my half-brother and how he rushed out of the patriarchal house with all his personal stuffs to marry my ex-sister-in-law, and I also wrote previously more details on how I have been deprived from his brotherly love towards me. Unfortunately, even now, the relationship between the both of us is almost inexistant. My mother succeeded so well separating the both of us that, despite so many temptations to restore that lost brother-sister bond, after only a couple of months and some misunderstandings and clashes, my half-brother and I split again, and this for a very long period. The very last time I saw him was a couple of years ago at his consultation when I wanted to introduce him my son, who was still 3 years old. But on that day, my half-brother was extremely harsh, arrogant and vulgar to my poor little child, who was extremely scared seeing his uncle in such a negative shape, that I got disgusted by my half-brother’s behaviour and then decided to definitely put a full stop to that impossible brother-sister relationship between us, which left me heartbroken, deceived and unfortunately gave me a reason for me to kill that relationship from my life once for all. That lack of brotherly love and affection affected me so much that I tried to seek love and affection from several male friends whom I considered as my spiritual brothers, but unfortunately none of the friends I made succeeded into compensating the emptiness within me caused by my half-brother’s absence from my life and my young brother’s death as an unborn child😦 Most of the “brothers” I had were either hypocrite with me, indifferent to me or disguised their real intentions as manipulators by covering their bad intentions against me in disguise of a fake brotherly love they felt for me until I came to discover their true colours.

My relationship with my patriarchal half-sister was in general very good since she covered me a lot with love and affection during the 6 first years of my life, though I was told that she felt some jealousy at first time when I was born. But through time and space she gave me her sisterhood affection in a way which was unique and which made that I loved her more than I could love my parents, or even my own child and my husband! However, things started to deteriorate since I turned 7 years old. While my mother was doing her insane things to destroy my half-brother’s life and marital happiness, my patriarchal half-sister’s behaviour started deteriorating little by little. She was more over-pressurised by my father, who considered her as a prestige for the family and she started adopting a bad behaviour through bad company, tobacco and alcohol. She was even over-pressurised because of my mother’s relatives who were living in France where my patriarchal half-sister was studying and who made with my mother a lot of gossips and invented so many fake rumours and lies about my half-sister’s misbehaviour in France. Even with me, she started being more aggressive for nothing and was even made me crying very often, but my love for her was so strong that I easily could forgive her and forget what she did to me. But when I turned 11 years old, she came on holidays at our place after a very long time, but she was no more the same girl I have been knowing during all those years: She was depressed, mentally insane, with new habits, new behaviour, completely different. I really didn’t recognise her and it was a real torture to have her at home than a pleasure for me. Her relationship with my father even got deteriorated, because in one hand my father still loved her to the core, but in another hand he was himself pressurised by my mother who was in a total position of strength since she had her family from France behind her back gossiping against my patriarchal half-sister. All that mess did that in August 1992, she gave her last breath and passed away at only 26 years old, but I was hidden the truth about her death for 4 long years, during which everyone lied to me that she was settled in Canada, that she was travelling for Doctors Without Boundaries, etc… Until one quiet morning in 1996 my mother told me the truth about her death, and announced it very simply as if she announced me that she had to go out for shopping! At first, I didn’t react, but the more the years went through and the more it went on affecting me, and what affects me the most is that my patriarchal half sister is gone forever, bringing with her all the dark secrets of her mysterious death in her graveyard.

With my matriarchal half-sister, at the beginning, our relationship was really good and she was a very playful and best friend to me. However, our relationship started deteriorating when she divorced her first husband after 7 years of catastrophic marriage life and an unborn child! The reason behind her marriage split was once more… adultery! And the worst was that my matriarchal half-sister was having her adultery affair at first with no one else than… my half-brother! Incredible but true! My father’s first marriage son together with my mother’s first marriage daughter! It was as if they duplicated exactly the adultery story between my parents, and it went on like that between them for about five years, including two years of adultery relationship they were freely living in my parents’ house in front of my eyes whereas I was a teenager! During that period, as I related previously, my matriarchal half-sister was separated from her husband after 7 years of marriage and an unborn child due to some albumin problems she was having, whereas my half-brother was still married to his wife and already father of a son, who was four-year-old during that period! But he was unable to choose between his wife and my matriarchal half-sister, but finally decided to put an end into his relationship with her and come back with his wife, until he would betray her one more time with another woman who was of same age as mine but who was single and known as a man eater! My matriarchal half-sister was devastated, but after several love failures following her brutal break-up with my half-brother, she found love and serenity with a divorced man from overseas, whom she married in 2003 and with whom she is living a happy marriage life in her second husband’s native country. My half-brother, for the moment, lives a free relationship with another divorced woman who had children from her first husband and who was my half-brother’s childhood friend, as my half-brother was brutally separated from the young lady of my age, who betrayed him after six years of open relationship with a man of her age, a Mauritian based overseas whom she married and had a son with! What was funny in all that story was especially the adultery relationship between my half-brother and my matriarchal half-sister, which my parents tolerated, all this because they themselves saw in the both of them the perfect duplicate of their own adultery relationship! And all that mess happened whereas I was just 16 years old and facing my teenage crisis!

I was the fruit of a marriage based on an adultery relationship, my own siblings were leading adultery relationships themselves – except my patriarchal half-sister who passed away in 1992 at only 26 years old for reasons which remained mysterious and untold during all those years and who just got engaged. And the fact that my parents tolerated that kind of relationship and that my half-brother and my matriarchal half-sister were living it without any shame in front of me, who was still a teenager and virgin, who didn’t know too many things about boyfriends and who didn’t know anything about sex pushed me to become myself an adultery woman when I married my husband! The other funniest side of that story was that my parents kept on preaching me good manners and preaching me that I shouldn’t have any sexual life before marriage and that one of the ten Commandments of the Holy Bible revealed that “Thou Shall Never make Adultery”, whereas themselves they were tolerating adultery between their children and were leading a marriage life based over adultery! Why the need to preach me such holy virtues when themselves don’t show the good example ?

I GAVE BIRTH TO THE ADULTERY DEMON SLEEPING WITHIN ME: CHANDINI BLACK

Chandini Black was the nickname I was using for my old Facebook account for one year… A secret Facebook account I created, where I could express myself freely as an unsatisfied woman. Unsatisfied not only for sex, but also in general. That Chandini Black account opened widely the doors which shouldn’t have been opened in my life: The doors of adultery. The experience of adultery reminded me of a quote that my husband kept on repeating to me, but which I never considered seriously: All that glitters is not gold. But I was still living in a world of illusions and kept on being attracted by things which were glittering in front of my greedy eyes. I fell into one of the biggest traps of life, further to lots of insatisfaction I was facing in my actual life: the traps of adultery. I need to share that story with you all, as a bitter experience which I really understood thanks to the help of my husband.

Further to an unexpected event which happened some years ago, while my husband surprised me on my Chandini Black account, I had to close that account in emergency. It was an account I created as my private corner one year ago, as a way for me to express myself and to be in total intimacy on my own, because I was a frustrated woman who couldn’t express herself freely and who was deeply suffering in her heart, in her mind and even in her flesh.

But the suffering was so high that at a moment, I lost total control of myself and accepted all sorts of rascals whom I never met before in real life, and with whom I entertained scandalous relationships in secret, while my husband was at work or even at night while my son was peacefully sleeping.

In some way, I am thankful to God to have sent my husband to surprise me on that Facebook account, and he even slapped me and found some proofs I was cheating behind him in such a shameless way. I denied a lot of things before when he wanted me to tell him the truth, but at a moment I finally found the courage to tell him the truth that I had that Chandini Black account, lots of rascals with whom I had those dirty relationships and lots of scandalous things I was doing together with them and for which I’m feeling really ashamed of myself today.

The reason behind that horrible misbehaviour was that I was a lost soul. I was frustrated with my actual life, which was full of thorns I couldn’t get out of it : problems with my family, conflicts with my in-laws, bad parents who never accepted my choices nor my marriage with my husband due to his modest origins, difficulties to sell my inheritance to help my husband financially having a house of our own, discrimination between me and my sister-in-law (my husband’s brother’s wife) because of preferences my in-laws did for her who already had her house and her child compared to me who still had nothing, bad advisers who dared putting mess between me and my husband and who abused of my weakness, medical treatments I was following against severe endometriosis, tireless fight to have a child through in vitro fertilisation, difficult pregnancy, difficult child delivery, baby Blues, mistreatment with my in-laws during the first month following my child’s birth, difficulties my husband was facing at work because of his abusive boss who had a mistress in his life, his change of job which made us leaving our native Mauritius for a brand new life in Seychelles…

But what accentuated those thorns were my child’s illness since we arrived in Seychelles since I did the biggest mistake of my life trusting one of my cousins, when I revealed her I was settled in seychelles. I thought she would have kept that secret for her, but she revealed everything to her mother, who then told everything to my parents, who are my worst enemies in life! We had proofs as there were too many coincidences, as my father came to know about us being settled in Seychelles the day after I informed my cousin! I came to know about that matter when my father dared calling my in-laws to survey with them if it was true that We would go in seychelles! And he came to know about that exactly one day after I informed my cousin, and during that period, my husband was overseas for a mission. Since that day, I doubted my cousin opened her mouth with her mother and that her mother gossiped with my parents about the fact that we are settled in Seychelles. If I knew what would have follow afterwards, I would have shut my mouth: the same day my husband came back from his overseas mission, my son and I left Mauritius together with my father-in-law to Seychelles… But he was caught with high fever and cold, and he didn’t have all his medicines with him to recover! The worst was that, as we just settled in Seychelles we didn’t know any good doctor to look after my son, and he remained ill for about one week! We also doubted that it was due to my cousin’s gossips that all those matters happened, because my mother always wanted to destroy my marriage and our little family, and we doubted she did some witchcraft actions to put the life of my son in danger! Since that day I totally cut contact with my cousin and I counted her among my worst enemies and my parents’ complicit into our destruction.

In addition to my son’s illness, since my father-in-law went back to Mauritius, lots of bad things again happened in my life : I was always crying, always aggressive, always depressed as I couldn’t accept how my father and my cousin could have broken my heart so much and how my cousin could have betrayed me so cheaply! However I don’t have proves that it was her who did it, but I have a lot of suspicions on her because my father being aware of our settlement in Seychelles coincided too much with the fact I personally announced her for my husband’s new job in Seychelles. Moreover, my cousin reacted very aggressively when I asked her whether she mentioned to anyone about us in Seychelles, as if she was feeling guilty. Her attitude was more than enough to convince me that she was guilty and I decided to take my distance from her without saying a single word. I related to my father-in-law my situation with my cousin and he told me frankly that he never appreciated her because she looked hypocrite and she was totally complicit with her mother, though she pretended to be in bad terms with her! He even added he didn’t appreciate seeing her coming at my place because she kept on taking information from me, for afterwards repeating the information to her mother, and her mother repeated then everything to my parents as she was in good terms with them. I felt betrayed because my cousin threw to the dustbin 25 years of close friendship and sisterhood through her betrayal, and thanks to my mother who succeeded buying her trust for me with some fantasy jewelleries!

Even though things calmed down little by little nonetheless in my life in Seychelles, things deteriorated again when I went to a trip to Mumbai. I had a lot of friends, but I especially became close friends with a hotel staff. Very quickly we became best friends and we shared a big complicity together as we understood each other in our respective problems we shared with each other. The hotel staff wanted to keep in touch with me, but he was rather lazy to keep in touch with me via email as he didn’t really like writing. Also to make our communication easy, I created a facebook account, and we kept in touch through that account regularly. But temptation then became stronger by my side, and while I wanted to increase my social network on facebook, I started little by little accepting all sorts of contacts whom I didn’t know, and I totally lost control of myself through lots of bad temptations and all sorts of rascals who abused of me… And whom i authorized to abuse of me! Before I had that fake facebook account, I had a real one which I closed in emergency because I was spending too much time on it and neglecting my responsibilities as a married woman. But for the fake account, I really abused of the situation! Facebook was already a drug for me when I had my real account, and that addiction became worse with the fake profile, it was like an overload of ecstasy drugs I was daily consuming… A drug I was consuming to drown my frustration towards my incomplete life, my jealousy seeing others having complete happiness with their families and in their couple, the unsatisfied woman within me, the little girl abused by her parents since she was born and who was still crying within me… And facebook wasn’t only a drug for me in virtual, like for my fake account… It was also a drug in real life, when I still had my real account, as I allowed some people abusing of me even physically, sexually and morally, even putting my pregnancy in danger! In such horrible conditions, one of my children died in my womb (I was supposed to have twins) and I became even so insane that I didn’t even want my son to come in my life! But God spared his innocent life, and though the insanities are still in my mind and heart, I realize nonetheless, though it’s very hard most of the time looking after him as a difficult child, how my life would have been empty without a child in my life, though I have been crying so many tears of blood to have him and after his birth!

I couldn’t accept my new life in Mauritius. I couldn’t accept such discriminations between my sister-in-law and me. I couldn’t see my family still being rejected despite my hopes of having our families reconciled after my comeback from Madagascar. I couldn’t bear seeing my father-in-law continuously aggressive and tense because of his responsibility towards my sister-in-law’s child, who was still 2 years old, and the fact that I was very often neglected by my in-laws, whose time mostly went around my nephew, though I understood he was still small and needed lots of care and attention as he wasn’t yet going to school. I was always pressurised during the 2 first months I spent at my father-in-law’s place as our puppy was quarantined since we brought her with us from Madagascar. I had adaptation difficulties in our new lifestyle in Mauritius, which contrasted totally from my older lifestyle as a single young girl, where I was living like a prisoner in a golden cage, whereas this time I had to cope on my own despite being helped by my husband, in-laws and our maid, who unfortunately was very disliked by everyone because of her strong mind and big mouth, though she had a good heart. I was badly advised by fake friends who abused of my friendship, affection and trust only to tease me to satisfy their ego in return. I was disturbed everyday by my cousin (the same one who betrayed me when we settled in seychelles) as she kept on making me loosing my time with her talkiness on the phone while I was busy with my chores. I was always harassed by my father who kept on calling me, not as a father, but as a sort of spy to know all updates about me, and even had guts to disturb my husband during his working hours every week to exhaust and stress him regarding my mother, for afterwards gossiping about us with her before she would go ahead with her witchcraft stuffs! I was always pressurized by my in-laws to keep clean their relative’s house which we were occupying until we would have our own house someday. We shed tears of blood for two long years until we would have some of my properties sold to allow that money being invested in some maintenance and repairs to be made in our new house we could purchase since my husband applied for a loan and that his loan was approved. , the treatments for in vitro were extremely tiresome and stressful. After child birth, I faced forty days of hell with my in-laws and total absence from my own family, and there were too many fights and conflicts between me, my husband and my in-laws, including gossips from some bad mouthes linked with our lack of experience into raising a child! I also did some wrong choices in life by involving myself in an illegal and strange network marketing business, during which I was obviously attracted by someone who looked like my type of man in appearance, but who was a danger for my marriage life, and that same person succeeded into seducing me physically and touching me, though we never ended in bed. I was also in search of new pleasures with a second man, whom I even dared meeting in secret in our relative’s house and at the office where I was doing the network marketing business. I faced fake friends who gave me bad advices to trap me and to revenge, because my husband never appreciated them and thought bad things about them, which I repeated to my friends instead of treating that problem with diplomacy. Also those fake friends misused those remarks to revenge and they abused of my moral person through bad advices. Among them, there was one ex-colleague of my husband’s and a maid who was working for us when we just arrived in Mauritius. I was always persecuted because my father-in-law never wanted us to keep our puppy anymore with us, because they feared that the puppy, who would feel neglected because we would be busy looking after my son who was still a newborn, would attack my son and even kill him, and as I was depressive, he succeeded influencing me to disbarass ourselves from the puppy and give it to someone else. My husband was very devastated by such a decision both my father-in-law took. But my husband’s tears of silence brought as result that the poor puppy passed away on my husband’s 40-year-old birthday because it got wildly hit by a car which was driving too fast in front of our door gate, when my puppy suddenly got out of the garden and was kicked by that car… And it was my father-in-law himself, he who gave that puppy so much damnation, who had to do its funeral! But we got mere consultation one week after our puppy’s death with arrival of a new puppy in our house  of same breed and same color. In addition to all that mess, so much pressure between me and my husband, difficulties for me to cope at the same time with chores, cooking, family pressure and education of our baby, though I was helped by a maid and sometimes by my in-laws. My husband, for his part, was pressurized and mistreated in his work because of his boss, who declared to be a friend but who totally abused of him and discriminated him financially, for the sake of his mistress. By the same way, there was the arrival of a new general manager and of new staffs, but in return lots of sackings as the company was making lots of loss. Also my husband had to look for another job, and our life drastically took a new turn-on since we based ourselves in seychelles… And it could have been a perfect life if there wasn’t so much mess afterwards in our lives and with that addiction of mine again with facebook!

THOUGH MY HUSBAND DISCOVERED THE TRUTH HE WAS DEVASTATED… BUT WE FOUGHT LIKE HELL AND SAVED OUR MARRIAGE AND FAMILY

Since my husband discovered the truth, I couldn’t do anything else than revealing him everything and telling him about my unsatisfied life and sexuality. But we came on a conclusion that both of us had some phantasms in common, that we could allow ourselves together to go ahead with them, and also through that way, spicing up our lives and our sexuality with new experiences to save our couple and our marriage, and also to revive the flame of love which unites both our hearts and souls, but within the condition that everything would be done without affecting our son as he is still too small, and within the condition that every fantasy we would allow ourselves to do would be done together, in couple, in total transparency, and no more in secret.

Since we put everything clear I felt relieved and felt the rage for fighting definitely against my demons and lighting back the fire which died in my marriage to save it. I also want to fight against all thunderstorms which may put back my marriage life into trouble and endanger our young child’s future. I was in total darkness, but I want to rise again. I was in total illusion but I came to realize how illusion trapped me and that there is a moment where I should be back with feet on earth.

True friends are like precious stones, but rare. Fake friends are like autumn leaves spread everywhere. When I took time to meditate about my past with my ex-account Chandini Black, I came to realize how I was surrounded with so many sharks who abused of my weakness while I was facing the most desperate moments of my life. Some of them abused of my physical person. Some of them abused of my moral person. Some of them knew me only when they were in need, but afterwards rejected me like an old pair of socks when I couldn’t help them properly. Finally, some of them misused me only for the sake of their ego. I then realized little by little that I was drowning into a total world of illusion and, much before my husband surprised me, I already started feeling disgusted with that account, but yet was still addicted to it. But the situation arrived at a summon where one of my contacts who crushed over me, dared mentioning on his profile that both of us were, first “in an open relationship”, then “in a relationship”! When he mentioned we were “in an open relationship”, I was very angry and told him to remove that status immediately from his status, which some of my contacts blindly believed to be true! He refused first to remove that status, because he was horny by thinking too much about me, and he even dared showing a picture of his tool to prove me how high he was! Nonetheless he seemed to agree to remove that status from his timeline, but instead, he mentioned that we were “in a relationship”! This was no more funny and I decided then to take serious actions by deleting that status from his timeline and putting him back in his place through some private messages I sent him.

But an angel saved me from the trap I was digging through that old Facebook account, and since I closed it, since I managed instead that new Uma Devesh one, since I severely selected among my Chandini Black friends list those who were really sincere and supportive with me before re-including them in my new account, my life drastically changed. Today I decided to rise again from my ashes like the Phoenix and no more letting any bad vibrations abusing of my weakness. I was drown in darkness for a long time of my life, especially for one year. But thanks to that angel, I found the courage and the strength to rise again.

Today I don’t want anymore to get trapped into the chains of adultery. I experienced it too much, first in my family background, then in my real life after marriage, and those chains were made of thorns which poisoned my life for years. However, with the complicity of my husband to save our marriage life, we both agreed to add some spices into our sexual life and love relationship with bisexual threesome, foursome or even gang bang affairs with only women who would join us for fun together, but not men as my husband would never agree that another man touches me again! Though in one hand I’m ashamed of what I have done to my husband and to our son, in another hand I’m very happy I taught my parents indirectly a lesson because they took me for a fool, and I wanted to show them that their preachings were of no use in my education as themselves they were giving the bad example and even encouraged adultery between my half-brother and Marjorie! By the same way, when I analyze the adultery chain in which I was caught, I saw my mother as the boat from which the chain was getting out to be thrown in the deep sea waters, whereas I saw myself as the anchor which would touch the soil in the deep ocean to maintain the boat intact before it would continue its trip. But my husband did a wonderful job because he succeeded, through that last chance he gave me, to detach the anchor that I was from that haunted boat which was the insane adultery family I was belonging to, and which I had to keep chained to me as if I had to pay all their sins added to my own sins! Since my husband freed the anchor I was, I started living my life with more serenity and quietly in my corner, like the anchor which would witness the beautiful life in the ocean, whereas in return, the haunted boat representing the adultery family I belonged to, together with the broken chain of adultery with which they were retaining me for so many years, would start deviating in all sorts of directions and loose control of its driving, until it would sink in the deep waters after long journeys of loss of direction and of orientation! That is exactly the punishment I ask every day to God for them: Perdition and disorientation, until they fall for never rising up again, as I don’t retain them anymore as their anchor!

Chandini Black is dead… Through the years, I found a new pseudo, Ekasringa Avatar, a young woman born again a free soul, freed from all chains of guilt which tied her heart and soul, and ready to rise again like the Phoenix taking birth again from its ashes. I came to understand how chains of adultery may have a soft appearance, but instead are like a poison slowly sinking in your veins and killing you softly. But instead I am feeling really sorry for my parents and siblings, whom I inherited that character trait, but who never understood that lesson and kept on living their life freely as if they never committed anything wrong. If such sinners are shamelessly freely living their lives, so why not me?

 

I was bullied at school… But raised as a Golden Child at Home!

When I was born, as per what my ex sister in law told me, my half-brother was impatiently waiting for me, as if he was waiting for the Messiah to come home. But when he was on his way to take me in his arms, my mother immediately forbid him to touch me, accusing him that he would do black magic against me! And it seems that no family member did even have the right to touch me, and as per what I have heard, everyone had to be disinfected from head to toe before grabbing me for a few seconds, and this only for a snapshot! I don’t know until which point it was true, but this is a proof on how my childhood started on a very bad note! At 2 months old, I was baptised Roman Catholic, since it was my mother’s religion, whereas, coming from a patriarchal family, I was supposed to follow either Hinduism, which was my paternal family’s religion, or Anglicanism, which was my father’s new religion. But there again, it was my mother who took the decision to put me in her religion, and this with total consent from my father, on whom my mother had total authority. I was totally lonely though I wasn’t alone. My mother always isolated me from the rest of the world while she was busy receiving her family, and I was always under the care of a nanny who worked for my parents and cared of me until I turned 6 years old. I didn’t have any right to have a social life, nor to interact with any family members, nor to have friends of my own. Despite all, I had a real rebel mind within me which encouraged me to cheat sometimes and to spend time with my other family members each time there were parties my mother organised for the family members. But despite all, my mother was extremely possessive and exigent with me, expecting me to walk in a way which was different from the other children, expecting me to be always the first in the class, the best in the family and the best in society, because, according to me, I was “superior” to the other children and I couldn’t socialise with everyone, whom she found ordinary. An example that could illustrate that is that she loved when I befriended my schoolmates, considering them as superior since they went into the same French curriculum private school as mine, and she always favoured her family members whom she always considered as superior to my father’s family, whereas she always underestimated my patriarchal family, since she found its members as ordinary and ill-mannered people, and who would be of bad influence for my education! That is one of the reasons why my relationship with my patriarchal family is completely broken. But that’s not the only reason and you will know why afterwards. But the illustration below is more than enough to summarise the kind of education (or rather the kind of miseducation) that I received from my mother:

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The only difference, compared to the illustration above, is that it’s not my daddy but my mommy who did of me what I am today. And when I hear about people daring to compare me to her, however it may be for her good side or her bad side, it really makes me sick! That niece of mine who recently betrayed me and whom I portrayed in that post regarding my Lokni’s wedding dared comparing the both of us, whereas I would better accept that I resemble my father more! When you will read about my Confessions as a Miseducated Girl, you will have more details on how I was educationally abused by my mother, which made how putting me in a high school finally turned me into an unemployed housewife! However I didn’t pay attention that I was being raised by a toxic mother during the first 7 years of my life, since I had a protector who was always there for me, and who was my patriarchal half-sister, who turned into being my godmother when I turned 2 months old. She was everything to me: My second mother, my first love, my best friend… Everything! Each time she came on holidays while she was studying in university in France, her venues to Mauritius was a real moment of pure happiness for me. However, when I turned 7 years old, so many drastic changes appeared in my life, and it started with my relationship with my half siblings. I am in parallel preparing another blog post in which you will have all the details regarding the bad relationship I had with my half siblings.

But first of all let me tell you about my school days: I started following my scholarship in a kindergarten with all sorts of mixed races and socio-religious belongings. I don’t really remember how it went on but I remember that it was a real torture for me to go there! The torture went on more when I started primary school and was placed in a French curriculum school, since my mother wanted me to follow a French curriculum education since she had some other plans for me… which had nothing to do with education! I was always lonely and had a lot of difficulties to adapt on my first day at school. As per what my mother related, when she came on the first school day to pick me at school, she saw a lot of children who were playing in the playground, but she didn’t retrieve me in the playground! She panicked a lot and looked for me everywhere, and then retrieved me in a corner of the empty classroom, with still my jacket on me and my schoolbag on my bag! I was very often bullied at school from my classmates because I didn’t talk to anyone and was always considered as a loner, a handicapped child, a mentally retard and all what you can imagine could be said against me! The worst that no teacher protected me either, especially one of them originated from Reunion Island who participated too into bullying me and menacing to put me as last pupil while attributing the ranks to the pupils at the end of each trimester. She always denigrated me very often too with other children and had no love for me either. But I had the opportunity, before composing my Baccalaureate, to face her and to blackmail her emotionally to put herself in her place and she failed into apologising with me since she was a real hypocrite. So many times my mother had to interfere to protect me from that bad teacher and menaced her at such a point that my school teacher once menaced me to stop repeating to my parents all what happened between her and me. I was really terrified about that devilish woman and I admit that even now at 35 years old, I haven’t yet overcome the trauma she caused to me for all that school year!

I have been with the same pupils during all my primary education, though I changed teachers every year. Apart when I was in second year in primary school (Grade 1 in American Curriculum or Year 2 in British Curriculum) at 6 years old, it continued when I turned 8 years old. I was in Grade 3 (American Curriculum) or Year 4 (British Curriculum). My behaviour, which was perfectly exemplary before, drastically changed. I started having anger crisis very often, I couldn’t concentrate on my studies correctly, I even started teasing my classmates and having a very indiscipline behaviour which made me having useless troubles with my classmates, who always knew me as a quiet and discreet nature. Myself I didn’t understand what really happened during that moment. But through the years I came to understand that it had a coincidence with my half-brother, who escaped from the family to marry my sister-in-law of the period, and some problems that my patriarchal half-sister was starting to have while studying in university in France. You will have more details in another blog post that I am actually preparing.

The bullying continued again when I arrived in Form I (Grade 6 in American Curriculum, or Year 7 in British Curriculum). where I was very often beaten and bullied by several children in the class, and especially my French teacher who was the teacher I disliked the most among my teachers! She always pulled my ears and she was always humiliating me in French tuition, and I was extremely scared of her like I was scared of that primary teacher too! But the problem I faced with that French teacher was completely different, since something very strange started appearing in my behaviour, especially when I started my third term. I was all the time beaten mostly by a girl who always considered herself superior to me and who always competed with me, and I was so scared of her that I sentenced to silence and couldn’t concentrate on my studies. It was as if she really wanted to destroy me and denigrate me, whereas I don’t understand what I could have done to her to provoke so much hatred against me. But that same girl, though I never wished for her damnation, paid the expensive price for all what she did against me, since she had bad company and even dated a rogue who made her pregnant! She even escaped from her parents’ house with her boyfriend since her parents disagreed with their relationship, and she even stole something from their house to have enough money for their household! Because of that, for so many years she didn’t come to school and her name was blackened since she had a bad reputation, but she could catch back her studies afterwards and rose again, but she stopped completely bullying me and turned a better girl than before, but she never apologised to me either. I don’t care, since I don’t need her hypocrite apologies and preferred forgiving her, not because I accepted what she did to me, but because I didn’t want to suffer anymore from her bad intentions against me, whereas I never did anything wrong to her!

But what was strange was that I was a golden child at home, and golden children should never be bullied at school since they should appear as perfect everytime, but unfortunately in my case, I faced the two extremes: In one hand being a golden child at home, in another hand being a bully at school. I have had the opportunity to watch several short movies during the Inter-College Short Film Competition 2016 which took part in Mauritius, where several short films turned around bullying, such as the horror movie “Bullied“, where a young new school girl is severely bullied to death by a group of senior pupils, before turning into a devilish ghost who will revenge against them by killing them one by one. There was also “Alone“, on which I wrote a long blog post since it inspired me a lot further to my own personal experience when I gave up my child at the moment he needed me the most. There was also “Hidden“, relating the story of a bullied young boy who had only one dream, becoming a professional singer. Or why not “La Verite Pa ene La Honte” (Truth isn’t a Shame) relating the same kind of story, with only difference that the young student had a mere problem: his father who was a disabled person and the fact that he alone had to look after him since he lost his mother. Little by little, I will review those short movies for you since they are in Mauritian Creole language, so that you will better understand the story behind them in English language, and explain you why bullying is a crime and an offence against a pupil through those examples. But contrary to me, those bullied students, for most of them, were rejected and misunderstood by their parents, came from poor family backgrounds, had personal problems they had to hide to the rest of the world, were different because they had secret dreams they couldn’t realise, but none of them were golden children. But me I had everything (at least in appearance), but in reality I was really suffering in silence deep inside myself, first without knowing the reason behind my suffering, then little by little coming to know the true reasons behind my loneliness and long years of school bullying.

I came to better understand the link between being a golden child and being bullied at the same time through that wonderful blog post, from which I have retrieved that extract about bullying where the author certified those lines: “When I was bullied at school, the reason my parents gave me was that the other kids were just jealous because of my “superior” looks, intelligence, or talent. I was also told our genes were better than other people’s, and our family was of a higher socioeconomic status than my friends’ families. I know now this was complete bullshit, but it’s the lie I was being fed while I was growing up. I think these “compliments” were intended to isolate me from my peers even further, so I’d just be “theirs.” I never felt empowered by the “praise” I got, because of the way it made me feel somehow defective and different from other kids. In addition, I felt like I could never live up to the pedestal my parents put me on at those times. I was right–and as an adult, I am looked down on by my family as actually defective.” That paragraph perfectly summarised what I have been facing for so many years, especially during my early childhood, like what I mentioned before. One of the examples again I forgot to share was about my walking way. Every normal child would start walking on four legs, and while proceeding his or her first steps, would use his or her hands to lean on them as a protection from falling down and getting hurt. But for me, I remember having been tied with a dog leash by my nanny, both my feet also tied by that horrible leash, and guided to walk as if I was a moppet, all this because I was a doctor’s daughter and that I had to be superior to the other children!

So, as per the illustration, is being a golden child a position to be envied? I don’t think so, and I don’t think that it’s worse than being a scapegoat. I have a relative of mine who was a scapegoat in the family, since she lost her mother when she was still a little girl, and since her father remarried another woman with whom he had two daughters whom he loved to the core. However, under the pressure of his second wife, he mistreated his first marriage daughter all the time by abusing of her physically, beating her, rejecting her, insulting her, always saying that she is ugly, etc. She was the Painter of the family all the time and this for years. That dramatic position in which she retrieved herself however caused some damages in the rest of her life, because despite having retrieved total taste and confidence in life, she is still suffering deep inside herself, and that made of her a completely unbalanced girl between two extremes of her life, one where she was extremely bullied and mistreated by her father, and the other where she was raised like a queen in her household by her husband. I could have supported her because I understood her pain after having given me almost 30 years of my energy into cherishing her and giving her consolation, love and affection while everyone was rejecting her as a vulgar pair of socks. But if today she is no more a part of my life, it was because of the cheap betrayal she did against me as my narcissistic mother’s complicit against me like I mentioned in what I wrote about My Lokni’s wedding. I never thought how her sad experience turned her into a real monster, and I don’t know whom to blame in that story. Is her father to be blamed for having abused of her? Is her husband to be blamed for raising her like a princess? Or is there something which turned wrong into her transition from being a servant to being transformed by a beautiful Princess Cinderella? Nonetheless, though I am hurt, I forgave her and I hope that one day she will find that perfect balance between the two extremes that she has been during all her life. But at least at school, in university and at work, she never was bullied since she knew how to defend herself.

But I found that extract from the scapegoat definition, which gave me another perception of Scapegoat, especially in Christianity: “In Christianity, especially in Protestantism, this process prefigures the sacrifice of Christ on the cross through which God has been propitiated and sins can be expiated. Jesus Christ is seen to have fulfilled all of the Biblical “types”—the High Priest who officiates at the ceremony, the Lord’s goat that deals with the pollution of sin and the scapegoat that removes the “burden of sin”. Christians believe that sinners who own their guilt and confess their sins, exercising faith and trust in the person and sacrifice of Jesus, are forgiven of their sins.” From that definition, should we conclude then that scapegoating, at the image of the Christ sacrificing Himself to remove all the world’s sins, can be something being done of your own will also in some specific cases? But there, in Protestantism, Christ is described as the Lord’s Goat, whereas in Christianity He is described as the Lamb of God. So what difference is there then between those two depictions of Jesus Christ? I saw that article which seems to reply to my answer and where I could find the contrast between sheep and goats: “In the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats, we are looking at man redeemed and saved, and man condemned and lost. A casual reading seems to suggest that salvation is the result of good works. The “sheep” acted charitably, giving food, drink, and clothing to the needy. The “goats” showed no charity. This seems to result in salvation for the sheep and damnation for the goats (…) The core message of the Parable of the Sheep and Goats is that God’s people will love others. Good works will result from our relationship to the Shepherd. Followers of Christ will treat others with kindness, serving them as if they were serving Christ Himself. The unregenerate live in the opposite manner. While “goats” can indeed perform acts of kindness and charity, their hearts are not right with God, and their actions are not for the right purpose – to honour and worship God.” But there, despite that description, Jesus Christ is still described as the Lamb of God and not a Scapegoat. And then I came to understand a third part that very rarely humans do in front of embarrassing situations, by becoming scapegoats of their own will to calm down difficult situations in the aim of saving someone else’s life or to resolve temporarily an unsolved problem. One of the examples that comes into my mind is about an episode of Cinderella I used to watch when I was still in college. In that episode, Cinderella’s stepmother lost a ring accidentally because of one of her daughters who lost it. Cinderella, who was innocent, accepted to be the culprit instead of those two sisters to avoid them being punished. She looked for the ring and when she retrieved it and gave it back to her stepmother, the stepmother finally asked her to keep the ring for her since it was just a fantasy ring. The Godmother fairy witnessed Cinderella’s kindness and generosity and blessed the ring by giving it a special glittering aspect in the dark. Another example came from my mind in an episode of Tom Sawyer, who once got beaten by his teacher to protect his best friend Becky Thatcher, who accidentally tore a book belonging to the teacher, so that she wouldn’t be beaten. Through those two examples, I understood Jesus’s ultimate sacrifice He did for removal of humanity’s sins, and how he became a King at the Right of his Father in Heaven, and how through that example He showed each of His followers the importance of carrying a Cross and how such sacrifices bring Blessings. But again, doesn’t that kind of sacrifice make of you temporarily a scapegoat? Yes, but the compensation is there: From being a scapegoat you can become a Lamb. The Ugly Ducking is also the same characteristic of the scapegoat of the whole farm… But he finished first in a race by trying hard and turned into a wonderful swan.

Hilary Clinton, Donald Trump and the people of Mauritius

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I am Mauritian. I am a mixed girl, since I inherited the Indian culture from my father and the Afro-Creole culture from my mother. The common point in those cultures is that Indians and Afro-Creole people are descendent of slaves, who were brought from India and Africa by the Colons to Mauritius for their own account. Being a part of a Mauritian country, known worldwide as a mixed cultural, religious and social nation contributed largely of making of me a world citizen and having a bigger opening on what is happening worldwide. I am settled in the Seychelles actually, another paradise archipelago located in the Indian Ocean. Every morning when we wake up, my husband and I zap mostly on CNN before changing the channel for either Boomerang or JimJam, where our little one would hear the sound of his favourite cartoons from afar, so that he could slowly and peacefully wake up before affording the long day waiting for him for a 5-year-old little boy. And like so many people in the USA and worldwide, my husband and I have been following the Race for President, on TV as well as on social media, on the Internet and on WordPress.

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To be honest, I haven’t really focused on all the sources that were written regarding the opposition between the two finalists to the Race for Presidency, but alike a lot of American people, my heart was totally for Hilary Clinton. Hilary Clinton, if she had been selected as the next President, would have entered History as the very first Female President of the USA. As a patriot from a country which has a woman as our President of Republic of Mauritius, in the name of Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, it’s mentioned in that article that “Mauritius’ election of a female leader will go a long way in advancing women empowerment and possibly lead to the elimination of the notion of patriarchy that has been attached to the title for decades – at least in Mauritius.“. Both women have so many things in common though they never met before: They are beautiful. They are elegant. They are powerful. They are intelligent. They are cultivated. They have open mind on other cultures. They are capable. Above all they are women like you and me, ladies. They also have a family, children and, especially in the case of Hilary, who is the happy grandmother of two adorable children. Despite all, they proved whatever more and more women are proving nowadays, women are stronger ever. I still remember Hilary’s daughter Chelsea Clinton, in that emotional speech she delivered one day beautifully dressed in an elegant red dress, where she described her mother, through her words and through a video, as a hardworking, inspirational and compassionate woman, with true human feelings, and whom she presented as “My mother, my hero and our next President, Hilary Clinton“, before sharing a heartfelt mother-daughter hug with her not less beautiful mother, elegantly dressed in a white outfit before delivering her next speech. When I watched that scene, I couldn’t help myself bursting in tears seeing so much love between both mother and daughter on stage.

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Though I didn’t have the right to vote since I am not an American citizen, my heart was totally for that wonderful woman and her incredible compassion for having the country worth being called the “United States of America”. I remember that a friend of mine, once during a conversation we had on Facebook, said that the United States of America was just a name, since each state had its own way of living and its own culture, and that the whole states united together were called the United States of America only as a formality and nothing else. It’s true, why didn’t any of us ask to ourselves the question, “How is it that the country is called the United States of America, whereas each state has its own culture”? I had the answer through that article, stipulating also that, I quote, “A resolution by Richard Henry Lee, which had been presented to Congress on June 7 and approved on July 2, 1776, issued the resolve, “That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States….” As a result, John Adams thought July 2 would be celebrated as “the most memorable epoch in the history of America.” Instead, the day has been largely forgotten in favor of July 4, when Jefferson’s edited Declaration of Independence was adopted. That document also states, “That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES.” However, Lee began with the line, while Jefferson saved it for the middle of his closing paragraph.

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This is not all: Hilary Clinton’s candidature as future President of the United States of America would have put Clinton as a symbol of hope for all American and worldwide women, a proof that in womanhood, nothing is impossible. Before knowing more about the American womanhood nowadays, it would be interesting to know how the woman evolved drastically from before to after the American Revolution, and here is a very interesting answer that I found and which summarises it all and puts Hilary Clinton as a real symbol of womanhood for the country:

During the 18th century, the women’s role and work was extremely difficult, exhausting, and society was unappreciative. For poor families in colonial times, women’s full time job was homemaking. Poor housewives had to cook meals, make clothing, and doctor their family on top of cleaning, making household goods to use and sell, taking care of their animals, maintaining a fire and even tending to the kitchen gardens. Middle class and wealthy women also shared some of these chores in their households, but they often had servants to help them.

Both men and women had great social pressure on them to marry. Young girls were often married by the age of 13 or 14 and if women weren’t married by the age of 25, it was socially humiliating. Marriage was mostly for economic benefits, not romantic situations. Widows were also pressured to get married as soon as possible. Even in some states, laws were proposed that would force widows to marry within 7 years after their husband’s death. Widows, however, were often married within a year if not sooner. Women were considered legally dead once they were married under common. Once married, they legally became one with their husbands. Married women had no control of their earnings, inheritance, property, and also could not appear in court as a witness nor vote. Their husbands, therefore, were responsible for all aspects of their wife including discipline. Widows were better off. They had control over their property, but could only receive up to one-third of her late husband’s property. A widow could also vote in some areas, but often widows were not aware of this fact or chose not to. Husbands could legally beat their wives. If a woman ran away from her husband, she was considered a thief because she was stealing the clothes she was wearing and herself. If a man murdered his wife, he would be hung. If a woman murdered her husband, she would be burned alive.

The Revolutionary War brought women into many new causes. Although women’s organizations had begun to appear in the late 1600’s, it wasn’t until the mid 1700’s that these organizations involved politics. In 1766, “Sons of Liberty” and “Daughter’s of Liberty” started to appear throughout the country. Right away, the Daughter’s of Liberty was very active. When Americans began to boycott British clothing and materials, these women organizations spun clothing for their community. Also, when tea was taxed, women began a boycott and even went on to form anti-tea leagues. In January 1770, 538 Boston women signed an agreement, vowing not to drink tea so long as it was taxed. These women organizations also played a large role during the war. Clothing and other materials were needed to clothe Patriot soldiers, so women got together to spin and sew uniforms. Women also wrote pieces in the local newspapers about the war, held scrap drives and even made cartridges. Sybil Ludington, the 16-year-old daughter of a patriot general, commanded a Patriot militia unit and rode over 40 miles in the dark of the night to wake the minutemen. Women loyalists also played some part in the war. One loyalist women’s organization raised enough money to buy a ship and outfit it as a privateer to fight against the Patriots. Most women loyalist organizations failed to stay active, although some loyalists acted as spies and letter carriers for the English.

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Hilary Clinton, in addition of being the first female to arrive at the final of the Presidential Electoral Race, is a true former activist, and has been progressively the US First Lady after election of husband Bill Clinton as President of the United States, then former State Secretary at the White House when President Obama was named President, and then here she was again, running for Presidency. Since her past is known by all Americans, especially during the controversy regarding her husband’s scandalous affair with Monica Lewinsky, lots of people interpreted Hilary’s campaign as well as a politic of revenge against her husband. Some other versions, like in this article, though show that political campaign as a way for Hilary Clinton to “destroy” all women who accused Bill Clinton into sexual assaults. There were even some funny blog posts which I saw on my blog, where they depicted about the responsibilities that Bill Clinton would endorse in the White House if he officially became the First Gentleman. Regarding the title which would have been given to him, naming him the First Gentleman created some speculations before, since he wanted to be called the First Dude or First Lad.

But my biggest deception was when the results arrived this afternoon, a couple of minutes after my little one was back from school. My husband announced the results with a true deception in his voice: Donald Trump was officially nominated President of the United States of America! I was totally shocked, disappointed, especially since such a man was chosen by most of the people for President! Someone everyone called a hater, a racist, a liar, a womaniser, and all what you can imagine, making of Donald Trump a real nuisance for all those who voted for Hilary Clinton. I was in a good mood during all morning, praying for Clinton becoming the next President, and was completely down when the results arrived in favour of Trump! The first thing which came in my mind regarding the slogan “Make America Great Again” was the image of the Native Americans living peacefully in the country before the arrival of the White Man. The caricature below perfectly illustrates what was in my mind when I heard about Trump’s nomination, and I shared it with several of my Mauritian and foreign contacts on WhatsApp:

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As you can see, on top of the picture, new President Donald Trump, and on the bottom, the Native American Indians, known as the First People. I have found during the afternoon a lot of interesting articles related to the link between Donald Trump and the Native American Indians, but since it’s a long debate to be written, I will post something about it furthermore, since I have found quite a lot of documentations regarding the links between them, since some articles demonstrate the Native Americans against Trump, but even the Native Americans in favour of Trump. Meanwhile, hereunder a glimpse of the first reaction I obtained after that picture.

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A compatriot of mine was the very first one to react and shocked me when he stipulated high and loud that he fully supported Trump! I was shocked by his reaction and overreacted. Then, here were his arguments, which were worth being mentioned hereunder and which he shared with me on WhatsApp this afternoon:

Most Mauritians don’t know anything about the US Elections 2016, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. They are framed by hear-says, media and opinion leaders. But they don’t hesitate to fight behind their screens. A blessing or a curse? Debatable.

If you cannot accept someone for their political beliefs, you have soul searching to do. I supported Trump and I still respect your choice for Hillary🙂

Media made Trump win today. While the majority thought, they were making fun of him through trolls and slogans, they forgot that they were actually contributing to his publicity too. Trump managed to convert trolls to his favour. Today, I stand for him to send a strong message to those sitting behind their screens and letting themselves carried away by all sorts of trends that media set.

I firmly believe that Trump will speak responsibly now. Make the naughtiest boy in class the captain and he behaves very well.

Hillary had bet in being a woman mostly. But that’s not a criteria. Fuck gender.

First of all, I would like to thank that compatriot of mine, who gave me a very tight matter of thinking, since there are lots of powerful points on which he said the right words, and on which, myself as a simple passive TV watcher for the elections, I never thought about. The first sentence which captivated my attention was, I quote, that Mauritians “are framed by hear-says, media and opinion leaders”. That is unfortunately totally true. I remember that I was still settled and working in Madagascar during the socio-political crisis of 2009 which violently shook the country. In a moment of panic, our Mauritian Ambassador of the period, Mr Gerard Lemaire, organized a meeting with several compatriots, including myself, regarding the security for the Mauritian community during that fragile socio-political situation in the country. He was extremely angry since there was a Mauritian compatriot who was in Madagascar within the framework of a professional mission, and who didn’t even hesitate to tarnish the image of the situation with such abusive words, which went into the local Mauritian media, and which described the actual situation in Madagascar as if it was enrolled in World War III! Unfortunately I couldn’t retrace the article that was published about that woman’s lies, but as an ex-expatriate I will never forget those harsh and abusive word of hers! Yes, there was still insecurity, and during the evening we couldn’t go out because there was the curfew that we had to respect, but little by little, the country rose again, and everyone restarted his respective activities, at least wherever it was still possible, since there were so many buildings which had been savagely destroyed during the manifestations, especially the Jumbo supermarket and the shopping mall where it was located in the district of Ankorondrano, all of ex-President Marc Ravalomanana’s personal businesses including his company Tiko, etc. Another proof on how Mauritians really blindly believe in what they see on TV and in the newspapers, without even trying to have their own opinions and doing their own researches by themselves through the internet or through their own experience in Madagascar themselves.

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I loved the sentence “If you cannot accept someone for their political beliefs, you have soul searching to do”. I succeeded into finding that interesting article which perfectly describes in details what he mentioned there, and here are a few extracts which perfectly illustrate what he mentioned:

Solution aversion, as the researchers call it, seems to know no partisan bounds. “In any issue where people’s cherished beliefs and identities are in play, you’re probably going to see some amount of solution aversion,” said Troy Campbell, a consumer behavior researcher at Duke University’s business school. “We alter our view of reality to be as flattering as possible.”

(…)

The field’s origins lay not in political thinking, but personal—for example, the tendency of people to accept or challenge medical diagnoses. But the political implications are seductive, particularly regarding the conundrum of human-caused climate change, an issue on which the essential details are uncontested among scientists but remain a matter of partisan divide among the public.

(…)

Previous motivated reasoning research has highlighted the role social factors may play, positing climate change rejection as a sort of tribal identifier among Republicans, one that might touch on a reflexive antipathy to negative information or perhaps a partisan distrust of science.

Another sentence which I really loved in what he mentioned was this one, “While the majority thought, they were making fun of him through trolls and slogans, they forgot that they were actually contributing to his publicity too”  And here, I think that I have found the right article illustrating that purpose, and which I advise you to read completely, since it perfectly illustrates what my compatriot mentioned, and for which I propose you to meditate about the introduction, I quote, “Acknowledge that you don’t get to define other people’s comfort level with you. Which is to say that you may be trying your hardest to be interesting and engaging and fun to be around — and still come off as a creeper to someone else. Yes, that sucks for you. But you know what? It sucks for them even harder, because you’re creeping them out and making them profoundly unhappy and uncomfortable. It may not seem fair that “creep” is their assessment of you, but: Surprise! It doesn’t matter, and if you try to argue with them (or anyone else) that you’re in fact not being a creep and the problem is with them not you, then you go from “creep” to “complete assbag.” Sometimes people aren’t going to like you or want to be near you. It’s just the way it is.

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Finally, I really enjoyed that last sentence saying “Make the naughtiest boy in class the captain and he behaves very well”. I don’t know if that example would perfectly illustrate what he said, but I have just seen a very long synopsis of a book entitled “The Naughtiest Girl in the School” from Enid Blyton, relating the life of a school girl named Elizabeth, who is known to be unfriendly and indiscipline, but whom we will come to know all along the story to be a kind hearted nature. Here is an extract of that summary which may be interestingly illustrative for that last opinion from my compatriot: “The ensuing section of the book deals with a period in Elizabeth’s school-life which has far-reaching effects and is the cause of much misery and consternation. The eventual outcome however must be considered when weighing up the various factors in which plenty of feeling and emotion is involved. The incident is so complicated that it takes up about six chapters and this leads us almost to the end where Elizabeth is going to have to make a decision as to whether she wants to stay at Whyteleafe or be sent home. Things are going to be rather spoilt if she does turn her back on the school … there’s the piano-duet which is destined to be played before all the parents when they visit and there’s Elizabeth’s love of gardening with John not to mention her relationships with the girls and especially her close friend, Joan. These are commitments in the long-term arena and Elizabeth has to choose her path. Life can be so difficult can it not?

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But the only point though on which though I don’t agree is when my compatriot mentions about Hilary had bet by being a woman mostly, but that it’s not a criteria. According to that article, Gender is unfortunately a factor. Here is a fact which perfectly contradicts what my compatriot mentioned:

Hillary Clinton’s greatest political liability is simply that she is not a man. According to her Twitter bio, she is “wife, mom, grandma, women + kids advocate, FLOTUS, Senator, SecState, hair icon, pantsuit aficionado, 2016 presidential candidate.” Her list is both cumulative and compound.

Like rindfleischetikettierungsüberwachungsaufgabenübertragungsgesetz (the now-defunct German word for “law for the delegation of beef labeling”), each thing sticks to the previous bit, and none of it ever goes away. Once a mother, always a mother. Pantsuits excepting, same goes for the rest of who she used to be and who she currently is. But in Clinton’s alphabet self-portrait, “wife” comes first and “presidential candidate” comes last, highlighting the fact that society still expects women to fulfill traditional familial roles in addition to saving the world.

To conclude, I would like to end by sharing with you a very intelligent article entitled “Is Mauritius inspiring Donald Trump“? Here is the extract which perfectly summarizes all those researches and the link between the nomination of Donald Trump and the Mauritian society, on which I invite you to meditate about:

So, when we’re laughing at the Donald, perhaps we are nothing more than hypocrites. Not least because our predicament is worse that the US’. The US may have openly welcome the Trumpification of politics, but Trump himself is not sitting on the throne and his prospects of doing so is remote to say the least. Here in Mauritius, we have legitimised what Trump represents through the ballot box. We have given local Donalds the power to turn Trump rhetoric into policies. If anything, maybe Donald Trump is looking at Mauritius right now for inspiration to make America great again.

But there is hope. Because for every Donald Trump there is a Bernie Sanders. Sanders represents a portion of the people that establishment politics has forgotten all about for years. These people respond to progressive values that favour social justice and a decentralisation of power away from the establishment and into the people’s hands. These people have been sidelined by the political class and been branded as apolitical, or worst unpatriotic (because they do not vote).

These people exist in Mauritius too. We are young and old, we are atheists and religious, we are rich and poor. We are everywhere. Now, we need to make our voices coherent and push local Bernies to offset the local Trumps.

We just need to look at our past for inspiration. Mauritius saw two great leftist revolutions that broke the establishment and gave power to the people. A third revolution is now due. And there are encouraging signs that it may be coming. A few hours before Jugnauth colourfully blasted hawkers for example, the latter had amassed a large crowd of people to protest against the government’s policies against them.

The following day, young students at the Royal College of Port Louis organised a sit-in in response to the unpopular and sudden transfer of the school’s deputy rector, and the refusal of authorities to engage with them.

What makes this ever more heartening is that is this instance of student collectivisation and embrace of civil disobedience is unlikely to be a one-off event. Young people are exposed to the global youth movements of protest online, through social media. We are watching young people in France protest against establishment politics through the #NuitDebout hashtag. We have seen the enthusiasm of Jeremy Corbyn’s young supporters who then elected him as leader of the UK’s Labour Party in a landslide. We are witnessing the popular rise of the left in the US as young people get enthralled by Bernie Sanders.

We are looking at people the same age as us, feeling as unrepresented as we do, collectivise and force change. And now, we are starting to believe that we can do it too — and just maybe we have started doing it too.

The Big Social Dilemma about Hindu womanhood in Mauritius and India

This morning, since I chose to have a relaxing day after having an almost sleepless night after a long and hardworking day at home with lots of food to cook, lots of house chores to deal with and so many reproaches I accumulated with my husband for silly matters, I seized the opportunity to watch an interesting Hindi Short Movie, “Teaspoon“.

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The cover image of the movie says it all, showing a tearful housewife who was crying out of her nerves because she was fed up. The story, which is in Hindi language but translated in English, relates the life of Kavita, a housewife whose life is balanced between her house chores, her cooking, her husband who works in an Insurance company but who needs to travel all the time, and her sick father-in-law who is sick and bedridden, and who always calls for his daughter-in-law’s assistance by hitting a teaspoon with the wooden bed or with a porcelain cup next to him. One evening, during dinner time, Kavita was talking to her husband Rajiv and wanted to go somewhere for a short holiday, but within the condition that her father-in-law would be placed in a home temporarily until they come back. But Rajiv categorically refuses that his father is placed in a home, which he estimates as costly, and prefers that he stays at home under his wife’s supervision. The days go by and Kavita’s father-in-law is becoming more and more exigent by asking after her through his teaspoon. The irony in all that is that he teases Kavita only when Rajiv is away from home, but doesn’t bother her when Rajiv is back home. Maybe because he knows that Kavita is busy with Rajiv… or that he pretends to act smart with her only to please his son? Only God knows! But the more time goes by, the more Kavita suffers from that situation since she feels abused by her father-in-law and completely misunderstood by Rajiv, who defends his father more than he does for his wife, who does everything for him and even for his father. Also, further to a huge fight between Kavita and Rajiv during dinner one evening, the morning after, Rajiv rushes to work without having his breakfast, since he doesn’t want to stay at home to avoid another fight with Kavita, since he cannot stand to fight against her each time she tries to complain with him about how his father acts towards her in and out of Rajiv’s presence. On that same morning, Kavita avoids her father-in-law during almost all the day, trying to cope with her other activities and with her work from home… Until at a moment, when her father-in-law asks her again for assistance, her nerves let go and she kills her father-in-law by accident by stifling him on the face with his pillow! When Kavita realizes what she did, she is under shock, and during the funeral ceremony during which everyone is quiet, she provokes noises in front of everyone by heavily bursting in tears, and she keeps on crying every day in presence of her husband. Rajiv, who doesn’t understand the strangeness of Kavita’s behaviour, asks her to stop that comedy since, according to him, she shouldn’t have cried so heavily since his father represented a burden for her and since she wanted to get rid of him for a couple of days by sending him in a home while they would go on holidays. Kavita wanted to tell the truth about what she did to her father-in-law, but she lacked courage and then sentenced to silence. Her husband then asked her to prepare his breakfast quickly otherwise he would be late at office. While she was preparing the chapatis in the kitchen, she suddenly heard again the famous teaspoon, but there was no one in her father-in-law’s bedroom… And then she came to discover that it was Rajiv himself who was making the sound with the teaspoon! Was Rajiv conscious that he was repeating the same gesture as his father? Was Rajiv aware that Kavita killed his father, and is doing again this disturbing sound to take revenge of her? Or was it the father-in-law’s spirit who came to haunt Rajiv to punish Kavita and turn her mad?

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Only God knows about what was in Rajiv’s mind in that movie, and that movie inspired me because it was exactly the same type of situation I have been facing recently. We are actually renting a fully furnished apartment in Seychelles. But as I related to you in my blog post “Too Much of Heaven Can Bring You Underground“, where I mentioned about some serious problems my husband had to face because of the landlord of another house we were renting before in the North of the country, I have to be very precautions on the way I need to keep the apartment clean. And on that day, I had a lot of food to cook since the day after we are used to fasting by only eating vegetarian food, I had some deep cleaning to do in the whole place since after only two days, the apartment turned dirty and dusty again, and I had a lot of laundry to do, especially since there were some white tissues which accidentally accumulated red stains after washing, and which I had to restore with some special products I could purchase especially for that in a supermarket in UAE, since those products weren’t available in Seychelles. I could earn a lot of time fortunately since my son was very tired after having waken up so early and then could do a 2-hour nap, but after such a hard day, I was so tired that I was feeling lots of back, feet and shoulder pains during the whole evening and that I was feeling very weak. But what pricked me was that, despite all the efforts that I did for all those chores, my husband kept on yelling in the house for some nasty details and each time our little one was misbehaving, without trying to understand that he was in good shape since he could rest for two hours to recuperate, and he even indirectly accused me of lacking discipline when it came on his education! At a moment I was so much fed up that I kept on yelling on my husband to make him shutting his mouth, and I felt completely demotivated and discouraged in front of such arrogance and ingratitude from my husband! Also today, because of that demotivation, I did almost nothing today apart some light chores and looking after my son since he came back from school. And again, my husband, whose mood unfortunately didn’t improve at all, kept on accumulating on me his moral lessons when he noticed some tasks not properly done, or things going wrong with our son, etc. At a moment I couldn’t bear it anymore for having so many moral lessons and reproaches from him, and while I brought the little one to the playroom after his dinner, since there was a playroom in the residential area which was kept open until quite late in the evening, my nerves went on and I heavily burst in tears, exactly in the same situation in which Kavita was retrieving herself in “Teaspoon”. I even have the sensation that, though my husband pretends that he understands me, in reality it’s not the case at all and I felt that I retrieved myself in front of a brick of wall exactly like Kavita felt with husband Rajiv.

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In such a moment of despair, I confided into a common good friend of ours, who is known for being a hardworker, regarding my situation, but she was categorical with me as a purely traditional Hindu woman: We, Hindu women, should be able to bear the burden of the whole world over our shoulders without complaining, even though we are sick, and we should always manage on our own and represent a rock on which our husband and children should always rely on through both thick and thin. She herself was an oppressed daughter-in-law when her children were still small, and had to face the burden of being always isolated by her mother-in-law and her sisters-in-law, and she even never had any encouragement nor support from her husband during those moments of struggles. But contrary to Kavita, she never gave up and kept on persevering without asking anyone’s help, and when her elder daughter got married, it was only at that moment that her husband really started to understand her and to recognize her values and how his own family were completely wrong about his wife. It’s in that purpose that she always encourages me to cultivate that fighting spirit that all Hindu women should always have within them, even in the worst cases. I remember that on my Google+ profile, I once posted a picture of several women who had to participate into a house construction, by carrying tons of heavy bricks over their head, since they were working to earn a living to help their husband with poor working revenue, so that they could fulfill their house hold. And after work, they had to continue working for the children, the family, the food and the housekeeping at home and had very few time to rest, but they never complained and always bore the burden of their responsibilities in silence, at the image of Mother India.

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I never complained so far since there are still a lot of married Indo-Mauritian women like me, who may be either younger or older than me, who continue to cultivate the tradition of being submitted spouses and mothers for their family, and who are always judged through their behaviour and through their clothing, appearance and daily responsibilities each and every day. Even though I have been raised within a half Creole, half Indian family, and that my mother mostly showed the glance of the Creole woman who was authoritarian, lived her womanhood fully despite her responsibilities and who always had her word to say and her presence to impose wherever she was going, I married a Hindu man and had to change myself drastically from the Creole education I received from my mother to the submitted spouse and mother I had to become, since all women and spouses in my family-in-law should always dress and behave respectfully, and be totally submitted under their husbands’ authority, though their husbands give them everything they need materially and financially, and though they have the right, especially during family meetings, to express themselves and to have an identity to show. For years, I haven’t been like that since I was always surrounded with maids around me like in my mother’s place, but when I stepped back into my native Mauritius after having spent the first years of my marriage life in Madagascar, I had to start everything from scratch and learn the hard responsibilities that every Hindu spouse should learn to do. It was very hard because I was always pressurised by my in-laws, and all the time compared to my sister-in-law, who had a child before me and who was more experimented than I was. But what pricked me the most was that during so many years, my in-laws considered her as the perfect daughter-in-law, whereas I have been considered as the incomplete daughter-in-law, which is the reason behind which one day, in a moment of despair after the huge fight I had with my father-in-law and which, I hope, put a final full stop to all those comparisons between us, I wrote “Sleeping Tablets“, a short story ending with suicide… whereas in real life, I am still alive and fighting, contrary to my fictional character Sapna in the story. And in addition to all that, I had no help from my parents, since I was and am still in bad terms with them, like I explained in all my other previous blog posts. But even though I was very harsh and cruel with my father-in-law during that fight, after which he had a very high blood pressure because of me, thing for which I never apologised though I was worried about his state of health (Hell yeah, I can be extremely cruel when I am angry, including against my elders, because when I have my points to defend, I never keep silent!), my father-in-law stopped comparing me with my sister-in-law, not because he understood my situation, how it was frustrating for me and how it made me sick, but rather because he was mostly scared of my overreactions and that he preferred shutting his mouth to avoid another argument with me.

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I don’t complain about the way I am leading my life as a housewife, mother and spouse, and I am very thankful that my husband gives me of everything and that I improved a lot the way I manage my daily responsibilities at home. I am also thankful that despite the struggle, my husband respects the fact that I need to cultivate my passion for literature, creative writing and blogging, since it helps me being better balanced in life and better managing my struggles, frustrations and moments of stress through expressing the voice of my heart through written words. But what I am facing, and what lots of Indo-Mauritians face again, even though the Indo-Mauritian society drastically emancipated through the years, resembles exactly the situation that still so many women face in India, since most of Mauritians have their inheritance within their Indian ancestors’ roots, and since Indo-Mauritians represent about 81% of the Mauritian population. There was another video which I loved watching from Bollywood actress Kalki Koechlin, a satiric video regarding rape, where she and another Bollywood star named Juhi Pandey ironically replied to what so many Indian women (and even Mauritian women) face as a critic when they are victims of abuse and rape, “RAPE: It’s Your Fault” which followed the numerous series of sexual assaults which had been filed since the famous 2012 Delhi Gang Rape which savagely shook the Indian society, especially women. In that satiric video, the kind of moral lesson that unfortunately too many women hear, in India like in Mauritius, is that one:

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This is exactly the kind of summon that women hear from men to be “respected” in society, and it doesn’t only concerns India but even Mauritius. Even though I have had toxic parents, the kind of education that they gave me was exactly what I obtained as per that picture, and I keep on practising that type of educational manner passively since I married a man with strict manners and am now part of a strict family-in-law who exegeses that every spouse should behave properly, not showing off in public, doing their house chores properly and wearing decent clothes. Myself, I do it every day, though I still have that rebellious voice within me which speaks when it has to, and though there is nonetheless a certain freedom of expression between me and my husband, even though there are still so many things that I keep untold and that I prefer writing in my blog instead. I even remember having watched a sort of short film that a good friend of mine once realised on his Facebook account, where men kept on being accused because of the Delhi gang rape, where he showed also the medal reverse that women aren’t that innocent either because they don’t behave as decently nor as respectively as before, especially since they are more and more caught on cheating, exposing their assets publicly, talking about their sexual life more and more openly with strangers, etc. And, of course, that it’s one of the reasons why they attract men to rape them… Another type of classical male accusation that I have heard that women are mostly responsible of their own rapes, which has nonetheless a part of truth especially on cheating. I remember having had so many male friends who faced hard heart breaks and relationship endings, since their girlfriends preferred lust and money with rich and wealthy men than true love they could receive from my friends, and on that purpose, with the education I have been brainwashed with, I found those girls really cheap and heartless, being myself a woman, and I gave my full support to my male friends.

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But there was a comment which I really loved reading in reply to the short movie “Teaspoon”, which stipulated that, I quote, “Wife should not be treated as a machine. A machine does not need any appreciation for the work it does. But, the wife expects some appreciation for the work she does. For that matter, even husband likes if he is appreciated for the job he does. In this short film, the husband never tries to understand the problem she faces in his absence at home. If he would have appreciated his wife for all the care she takes for his father other than doing house hold work, his wife would have felt happy and such ending would not have taken place. His wife was not bad in nature. Let all the husband learn to appreciate their wife for their contribution in running the family, to have a happy and peaceful family.” That should have been a good response to all what I have written previously, that if women became so bad and cheap, it wasn’t totally their fault, but especially because they had been victim of bad treatments in the past because of men, and mostly after having escaped from forceful marriages, at the example of late Bandit Queen Phoolan Devi, who was forced to marry an elder cousin whereas she was still a teenager, or of late Pakistani model Qandeel Baloch, who posted provocative pictures and videos of her years after having escaped a forced marriage, before she was killed by her brother “in honor for the family”! I also invite you to pay attention to Kalki Koechlin’s poem “Dear Men“, which perfectly depicts on how men are hypocrite towards women, and dare claiming once per year the International Women’s Day, and which is a strong slap about disrespect of womanhood. And finally regarding the rapists, I found something very interesting on a blog, where there was a review about the short video “RAPE: It’s Your Fault”, the kind of message that women dream men should read carefully so that they take conscious that it’s unfair of putting 90% of the blame over women, and only 10% on men:

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But after all what I wrote previously, as per whatever a good friend of mine, Indian author Pratap DivyeshPratap Divyesh, wrote in his book “A Responsible Confession“, Pratap perfectly depicts who should be blamed in the Delhi Gang Rape… I started reading the book, and the answer I obtained was that all started with OURSELVES… That before blaming the victim for having gone out late, before blaming the rapist for his irresponsible and monstrous action against an innocent girl, we should first have a look at our inner self before judging anyone… And he was right about it. It’s not the man or the woman who is responsible of the rape… It all starts with our minds first. And the extract of that article perfectly concludes about who is guilty in rape and we will see that both sexes are concerned:

As per my consideration the responsibility lies equally between both sexes because without a small mislead both sexes cannot cross the limits. In western countries there is a lot of reports on “Date Rape”which is a girl getting raped when she is going for a dating with a guy. If we analyse the situation there may be a little clue of what triggered the Rape situation and what may have been done to avoid that. In India this is now becoming a big problem since we have reports on this type of rape. In this both victim and the accused is known to each other. The situation created the problem.

If the girl is little bit cautious about her surroundings this may not have happened. If the guy is little cautious about the values of the friendship/love of that Girl then this may have been avoided. Recently there was a report which involves Rakhi  Sawant and popular pop singer. When we saw the pictures of Rakhi Sawant it was just a piece of cloth which was tied just by two knots near her breast. If we untie the knots then her dress will fall and she will be undressed. This kind of dresses will change a good mind to bad. We must know what to wear where. Yes there may be a little conditioned freedom is needed when we go to public because not all eyes and minds are same.

The true Diwali Starts within our Hearts and Souls… before being celebrated at Home!

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I was very tired after such a hectic day on Sunday, and even yesterday, since my son didn’t resume school back after his mid-term holidays, because of the bad weather outside and due to some health complications, which made that I had to look after him and at the same time catch back a lot of delayed chores and prepare dinner, but I didn’t want to fall asleep without writing that blog post, which I could publish this morning only due to network problems I occurred last night because of slow-down of Internet connection. Last Sunday was a very special day: It was Diwali Day.

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For those who never heard about Diwali, in the Hindu religion, it commemorates the return of Lord Rama from Lanka, after he defeated the King Demon Ravana, who kept Lord Rama’s wife Sita prisoner after having trapped and kidnapped her from her home, and saved the life of His beloved wife Sita. When Lord Rama returns to his homeland together with His wife Sita, He is welcomed by all his devotees with oil lamps called Diyas, which they illuminate all along His footsteps together with flowers to welcome Him and to celebrate His victory. Diwali is also the opportunity for Hindus to celebrate Goddess Laxmi, who is the Goddess of Wealth and Prosperity, whom they thank during that special occasion for all the good luck She has been bringing into Hindu families all over the past year, and also the Elephant God Ganesha, who is the Son of Lord Shiva and His wife Parvati and who represents the God who removes all obstacles, and Goddess Saraswati, who is the Goddess of Arts and Knowledge and spouse of the Creator God Brahma. On Diwali day, in India, in Mauritius like in every Hindu families, a couple of days before Diwali starts, families deep clean their houses, buy a new broom, a new cooking recipient, some new clothes and jewels for the occasion and at times start preparing some sweet cakes, since the varieties are numerous and that some of them need a long time of preparation. On Diwali morning, spouses keep on preparing some cakes and offer those cakes with the Holy Prashads (offers to God during prayer) to Laxmi Maa, Saraswati Maa, Lord Ganesha and also to Lord Rama and His Beloved wife Sita before packing the cakes and distributing them with all their family members, friends and loved ones before 06.00.pm, wearing their new clothes and jewels for that special occasion. The rest of the cakes that they don’t have time to distribute, they give them during the day after, since they need to be back at home before 06.00.pm to light on all the oil lamps (Diyas) before that time, which is the time, according to the Hindu ritual, where Goddess Laxmi enters the house of the family to bring Her holy blessings in the house. Diwali represents a very festive day, since after the rituals, youngsters and adults have a lot of fun with sparkles and firecrackers, folkloric songs and dances until late in the night.

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But through the experience that I had yesterday, the Diwali that I celebrated together with my little family was very different. We are still settled in the Seychelles all alone, since my son goes to school there and that my husband still works there. On Saturday, my son and my husband went for shopping to buy all the necessary stuffs for celebrating Diwali, whereas I stayed at home to proceed with a deep cleaning of the house. But since we were staying in an apartment that we were renting only temporarily, we didn’t buy any new broom nor recipient, but we only lit a new oil lamp at night for the evening prayer. On Sunday, my husband and I woke up very early to have shower, to perform our usual morning prayers and then, after a quick breakfast, I tidied the kitchen and started preparing the sweet cakes, while my husband was busy finishing an urgent work. To be honest, I have very few experience in cooking Indian sweet cakes, since it was only the second time in my life that I experienced cooking them on my own, and later I will explain you why. I first wanted to cook some Rasgoolahs, which are some little round cakes made with milk powder, which you should fry in hot cooking oil before rubbing them with a homemade cardamom syrup. Unfortunately, since we have an electric oven which heats too much, my Rasgoolahs got burnt and I had to throw all of them in the dustbin😦 Furthermore, I tried another type of cakes, the Nankatais, which are some vegetarian cookies made with corn semolina. They were not too bad but they didn’t have the original shapes that Nankatais have in general, and rather looked like some ordinary cookies, but they were presentable and, according to my husband and to my son who enjoyed them to the core, they were delicious🙂 So happy for them! After the Nankatais, I tried some Almond Barfis. Barfis are some cakes made with liquid and powder milk, sugar, cardamom powder and almond powder, which should have a thick texture after the Barfi paste gets colder and is then cut into some little diamond shape cakes. I tried the Barfi cakes and even included some green food colour in it to give it a more attractive presentation. However, since the Barfi didn’t have enough time to get colder due to the lack of time, the paste was very sticky when I tried to cut off the diamond shaped cakes! The taste was good though, but the presentation was a true disaster, and I learnt trough that catastrophe that next time, I shall prepare it the day before, so that the texture gets more firm. Finally I ended with Gulab Jamun, a sort of oval shape cake which resembles the Rasgoolah, but with a thicker texture since you add more flour in it. But when I tried the oval shape, I had difficulties to cook it because of the overheating oven, also I had to give the Gulab Jamun a round shape for a better cooking, and I may say I succeeded them. After the cakes were over, we gifted each type of cakes in front of our Deities which we regularly pray before distributing them with some of our neighbours and friends before lighting the Diyas at 06.00.pm. Contrary to the previous years, we only had two Diyas, one in our Prayer room, and one in our kitchen, since the kitchen represents the heart of Hindu homes, like all homes in general. We also got in touch with our relatives and close friends to share the Diwali wishes, looked after our young son, since he would resume school the day after, and my husband prepared a delicious carrot, potato and leak soup for dinner. And here I am, while my husband and my son are deep asleep, sharing you how my Diwali went on… And why I chose such a title to write my blog today.

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Before I share with you my personal experience, I have had the pleasure reading a recent post from one of my compatriots, where he expressed his own opinion about Diwali, and I really enjoyed that opinion because what he wrote in his post was completely right and summarises exactly what I have myself been experiencing before. He mentioned in his post exactly the way Mauritians celebrate Diwali nowadays: with hypocrisy and by showing off what they have. With the huge economical progress, lots of Mauritians tend to show off their wealth by building big houses, buying the latest high-tech products, the most expensive car, etc. But the medal reverse behind so much wealth is completely different and proves that the Mauritian society is based upon the principle that all what glitters isn’t true gold. To appear so much fortunate, Mauritians have a lot of debts since they need to contract loans with their banks or insurances, which they struggle to reimburse in return. There are some Mauritians coming from affluent families or of affluent personalities, who are protected by some religious communities, by freemasonry or who don’t even hesitate to call after sorcerers to be able to influence people through their fortune and words. There are some dealers who operate illegally in prostitution, child labour, drugs and all sorts of illicit businesses in exchange of dirty money. There are some corrupted people who either bribe their suppliers or superiors in exchange of money despite the active intervention of the ICAC in Mauritius to obtain some favours they don’t deserve. And it’s most of them who celebrate Diwali with so much extravaganza for the pleasure of showing off and without realising they are mocking Goddess Laxmi, and this without any shame nor remorse! And those same people expect that with so many lights decorating their houses, with huge Laxmi poojas celebrated in their houses, so many cakes shared with hypocrite Happy Diwali wishes to people they criticise, envy and dislike in reality, Laxmi Maa will step into their houses? And how about She shows Her anger by removing all the luck and wealth Her fake devotees accumulated for years to punish them,will they accept their fault or reject the wrong on others… including on Laxmi Maa?

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Regarding my own experience on Diwali, yes, I admit that I have also experienced Diwali in total ignorance and hypocrisy, but in a totally different concept. As I have mentioned in some of my posts, before marriage, I followed my parents’ religious steps mostly based on Roman Catholicism, Anglicanism and Christianity, before embracing Hinduism, though I kept on practising a few Catholic rituals after marriage, since my husband also praised Mother Mary regularly. I gave more details about that experience when I wrote about the way I took back the Hindu religion that my father rejected against his family’s approval. Since my father changed his religious orientation totally, as an ex-Hindu, he never felt the necessity to explain me the true meaning of Diwali, since myself I was christened Roman Catholic after I was born. However, for the pleasure of celebrating Diwali and being part of the Diwali festive mood, we enjoyed ourselves by buying Indian sweets and Diwali carton boxes, sharing the cakes and preparing the boxes equitably before sharing the cakes with my paternal relatives, and lightning some electric lamps… and even some Diyas! What was funny was that even though we were not following Hinduism, my father allowed that we would light Diyas, but he never explained me the meaning of the Diya… And myself, since I was so naive and ignorant, it never came into my mind to ask my father to explain me about the meaning of the Diya, nor about the difference between lightning a Diya and lightning some electric lamps. It’s through the news on television that I came to know about the meaning of the Diya and the information I obtained about its meaning was more than enough for my general, cultural and religious knowledge about Hinduism, since I wasn’t a Hindu devotee before marriage. After marriage, I embraced Hinduism, but yet, I admit that I had so much things to learn about Hinduism. My paternal family members were Hindus for the most of them, but none of them taught me about Hinduism, in one hand because my parents would never allow them to influence me on Hinduism because of my Christianity, in another hand because myself I was linked to Christianity and never wanted to betray my religion, which was the one in which my parents placed me since I was born. Things drastically changed after marriage, since, like I described in the post regarding my conversion to Hinduism, which I mentioned previously in that paragraph, I never expected that one day, I would be taught about the importance for me to embrace Hinduism after marriage. At first though, since I had no one to really explain me the basics that I was supposed to know, I ignored about the importance for me, as a spouse in a Hindu couple, to prepare the Diwali sweet cakes with my own hands by lightning myself the oven with my hands. I have been living in Madagascar from 2005 till 2009 and then had to leave Madagascar in emergency with my husband because of the socio-political crisis of 2009 which shook the country and forced so many expatriates to leave the country for safety reasons. But during all the time I was settled there, we had a Malagasy maid who used to prepare all our meals and who had a very strong experience in Pakistani cuisine, which mostly was alike Indian cuisine, at the exception of a few variants. Even Pakistani cuisine included Diwali sweets… But the difference was that Pakistani sweets all included eggs among the main ingredients, whereas Indian sweets excluded eggs, which was considered as an animal product as per Hinduism and wasn’t allowed to be used for cooking Indian sweets, especially since those sweets are distributed after prayer sessions with Hindu priests and during Diwali celebration and prayers, and also should be purely vegetarian sweets, by respect for the religion which didn’t authorise any animal product as offerings. Before marriage, my husband, who was already settled in Madagascar, then completely ignored that the Malagasy maid included eggs in the Diwali cakes she prepared for being distributed by my husband to his compatriots and colleagues, until one day, my mother-in-law, who was on holidays at his place in Madagascar, noticed that our maid included eggs and then forbid the maid using eggs again, explaining her as best as she could the meaning behind it, and the maid then stopped using eggs. Since it was the maid who used to prepare the cakes, and since she was already a good cook, I never cared about learning how to prepare food, and I admit it, since i came from a rich family where I had maids all the time to serve me, I was a spoilt child and I was never interested into learning the rules of being a good and independent housewife, until we had to leave Madagascar and that I retrieved myself on my own, and then forced to learn everything from scratch! For Diwali 2009, since we were living at my in-laws’ place, and 2013, during which we were on holidays at my in-laws’ place one year after our settlement in Seychelles, since my in-laws were preparing all the cakes and that we were mostly busy with our young son, I didn’t cook one single Diwali cake. For Diwali 2010 to 2012 that we celebrated in Mauritius, during which we were renting my husband’s uncle’s house until we would obtain our own house in January 2013, we could manage with some Rasgoolah, but we even ordered some cakes outdoors to complete what we cooked, but some of my in-laws, especially my sister-in-law, who was known to be always competitive with me since we know each other, was all the time teasing me ironically because of that, and it really pricked me though I never replied her anything to her provocations. But for the last three Diwalis that we celebrated in Seychelles from 2014 to 2016, we had to manage on our own. In 2014, my husband helped me a lot, whereas the two other years, since he was at work and our son at school in 2015, and since my husband was very busy with an emergency task this year, I had to manage on my own. I won’t say that my cakes were brilliant, but one thing was sure, I did my very best and I was proud that I could try to follow the Hindu tradition for Diwali as a true Hindu spouse after so many years of struggle and wrong experience choices. I understood that, as a Hindu spouse, for Diwali, it was of my duty, as a Laxmi in my family and in the home that I represent together with my husband and my child, it was MY duty to light the fire from MY oven, in MY kitchen, in MY home. It was MY duty to bake the cakes with MY efforts and own hands. It was finally MY duty to be the first person in the family to light the oil lamp for Diwali to welcome Laxmi Maa. It WAS NOT the Malagasy maid’s hands which counted to light the oven and prepare the cakes, though she did it in our house. It WAS NOT my mother-in-law to light her oven in her kitchen and to prepare the cakes. Because the efforts for those cakes and prayers were coming from OTHER PEOPLE, and it was THOSE PEOPLE who were harvesting the prosperity from Laxmi Maa, and NOT the three of us, since the efforts didn’t come from ME, the Hindu Housewife.

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However, this year, we were away from my in-laws, from our native country and from my family. People were pitying us because of that, thinking that we were sad for being alone, but it wasn’t true, at least for me personally. Yes, it’s true that I was alone, but I wasn’t lonely. I wasn’t lonely since after so many struggles I had been experiencing with my own family, and which I had been sharing in several of my previous blog posts, I totally eliminated my biological family from my life, and that I came to understand, after so many difficulties, that there was no worth for me to have a biological family with heartless, fake, hypocrite and hurtful and hateful feelings towards me. I wasn’t lonely, since I eliminated a lot of people among even my in-laws, who deceived me a lot through their behaviour towards me and the numerous critics and gossips I had been victim of since I entered my family-in-law and embraced their name, rites and rituals. Among those in-laws, I especially kept grudge against my father-in-law, who prefers my other sister-in-law than me, since she is the one who completes him the best, and I also keep grudge against my sister-in-law herself since she always keeps on competing with me since I entered the family. And you won’t believe me, but I didn’t even greet them Happy Diwali, since I didn’t want to be hypocrite with anyone this year, and that I preferred keeping silent instead of wishing Happy Diwali hypocritically to people that I dislike and despise. I wasn’t lonely since I moved away from my native country, where I had been unfortunate before and even after marriage and where I only keep bitter memories instead of sweet ones because of my family, most of my in-law, bad school experience during which I was considered a loner and at times was even bullied at school, where I never knew about experiencing a good socio-cultural life, and where unfortunately I made so many bad choices among those I thought would be true friends for me, but who were just illusions, at the exception of very few Mauritian people whom I still cherish a lot, but who made the object of a very selective choice by myself and at times with intervention of my husband. Finally, I wasn’t lonely, like I mentioned before, because I eliminated so many fake friends who turned either strangers or enemies to me through some bitter and unexpected life circumstances. I spent Diwali mostly with my husband and my son, through farewell thoughts shared with some people dear to me but geographically living away from me, through some people in the neighbourhood with whom I have a rather good relationship… and with God above all. But hell yes, I was alone… But I was happy, since I wasn’t lonely.

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By the same way, even though I didn’t succeed my cakes, though there were times I panicked under effect of stress and pressure, and at times because my son was mischievous with me in the kitchen, I gave so much punishment to myself to prepare all those cakes, and though at times my husband reproached me drastically when he found that my cakes weren’t good at all, though after those reproaches I wanted to let everything down, sit down and burst in tears, I found back the courage I started to loose to improve my preparations as best as possible, and though the final result wasn’t exactly what was expected, the cakes were tasty and delicious… But unfortunately, it seems that in Seychelles, local people don’t like sweet cakes too much, which means that unfortunately none of the cakes I baked for Diwali were consumed by my husband’s Seychellois colleagues. Only one of his colleagues from South Africa enjoyed the cakes, since he loved tasting new stuffs, but that was all. I was very deceived, and I even interpreted their reaction as pure racism and despise against Indians and Mauritians, which means that I swore to myself to never bake so many cakes next time, if those cakes will finally finish in the dustbin or in a forgotten corner of the kitchen cupboard or fridge. I was very deceived that so much energy and fatigue has been used finally for nothing when it came about sharing. But what consoled me though was that before sharing the cakes, I could perform my prayers in total simplicity and with a sincere heart.

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Finally, during all the times we celebrated Diwali in Seychelles, neither I nor my husband nor our son, except that year at least for our son with new clothes we succeeded buying for him during our latest trip overseas, had the opportunity to wear new clothes and accessories. We appeared in front of God and in front of people with our previous clothes but which were still in good state. We couldn’t even buy  new broom this year to clean the flat we are actually renting, since we are renting it temporarily only, nor a new cooking recipient to cook our cakes for the same reason as the broom. But we succeeded lightning a new Diya that we never used before, and this the day before the Diwali Day. The fact that we could at least light a new Diya this year was the most important for us since we at least succeeded welcoming a new light full of hope and courage in our lives, after so many struggles that we had been facing in our little family and in our marriage life. The way I had to manage on my own most of the Diwali celebration this year, and even last year was difficult, but my husband interpreted that experience as a test, since a true Hindu housewife, since she stands as a Laxmi in a Hindu family, must represent the rock of the family through both thick and thin, and be able to bear both the joyful moments and burdens of life upon her shoulders.

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Myself, through the years since I married, the more years go by, the stronger I feel I am becoming, though I admit I am still very fragile and vulnerable and that I need protection from stronger people than me to succeed in life. But that latest Diwali tested me and taught me some tough lessons: Quality instead of quantity. Sincerity and honesty versus show off and hypocrisy. Finally, the importance of the presence of the light inside our own hearts, souls and auras before spreading it in our houses and prayer rooms, since the first door Laxmi Maa will enter is the inner door to our hearts, souls and auras, and then the doors of our houses and surroundings.

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So on those words above and as I mentioned in my WhatsApp status, I am wishing Happy Diwali to all my dearest ones, the ones whom I cherish the best and sincerely, but I am not wishing Happy Diwali to those whom I dislike and despise, because they don’t deserve it. However for those same people, who represent my enemies, I wish them that the Light of God penetrates their inner selves and succeeds into cleansing their hearts and souls from all the darkness and shadows making them haunted and miserable, and that they feel the blessing and the welfare of that Light of God within themselves for a positive change, for themselves to start, and then for the rest of the world.

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My personal overview about the 4 P’s of Marketing in the Mauritian context

I have just finished replying back to my British-French pal, and I remember that one of the main points on which we discussed recently was about Hotmail’s new look, since a new version recently appeared. According to my friend, here is, translated to you in English, an extract of what he thinks about those renovations for new softwares and hardwares in computer:

All organisms change and update our computers and programs without preventing us, nor asking for our opinion. They don’t even ask us whether we would be interested to change them. They always make us believinv that it’s for “improving the performances”and for “security”, which is completely wrong!

Further on, he explained me that, through his own experience with softwares for a couple of 30 years, he had more problems with newly computer designs, whereas he almost never faced any difficulties with the very first brand new computers… It reminds me of my history and economics tuitions I followed when I was still in college, especially on how durable products in the beginning of the century on how products were more durable in the past, but much more expensive. I retrieved the extract of that article, translated in English through Google Translate, which certifies exactly the same problem that my friend told me about, and that extract is logical for those who think that having a cheap product helps you making more economy, which is completely wrong:

But there is one thing we forget is that these wonderful immortal vacuums were very expensive. My mom found the bill for its Electrolux Z325 purchased in 1976: CHF 648.-, about 1125 Euros current counting inflation of 2%. According to [12], only 50% of households had a vacuum cleaner at the end of 1968; If we extrapolate the price reduction of 30% in 8 years of home appliances (ie 4.5% per year), we find that the cleaners now cost about 7.5 times less than in 1968. As an Electrolux vacuum cleaner now costs in 200 Euros, that of our mothers cost the equivalent of 1,500 Euros today. So what vacuum cleaner is cheaper? The Electrolux 1500 Euros over 25 years either 200 4?

This is a translated version of what I obtained from Google Translate which I presented you previously, but I hope that you understood it too. I have noticed that in Mauritius, people rush a lot in supermarkets, for shopping malls or any hobbies and activities proposed in the country for the holidays, only because they are looking after the price according to the budget that they have for their household. Unfortunately, all the products that they buy are, for the most of them, defectuous products that they need to buy again and again after consumption is over, instead of contenting themselves with a more expensive product which will make them gaining more economy.

I remember that, when I was still student at the Mauritius Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the beginning of the 21st century, in Marketing, I studied the principle of the 4 P’s, which consists of Price, Product, Promotion and Placement, and on which I will give you some examples that they are very complex to adapt within the daily social and professional environment, especially in a country like Mauritius, after I share with you that extract which explains those principles perfectly:

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The Four Ps Model

  • Product – The first of the Four Ps of marketing is product. A product can be either a tangible good or an intangible service that fulfills a need or want of consumers. Whether you sell custom pallets and wood products or provide luxury accommodations, it’s imperative that you have a clear grasp of exactly what your product is and what makes it unique before you can successfully market it.
  • Price – Once a concrete understanding of the product offering is established we can start making some pricing decisions. Price determinations will impact profit margins, supply, demand and marketing strategy. Similar (in concept) products and brands may need to be positioned differently based on varying price points, while price elasticity considerations may influence our next two Ps.
  • Promotion – We’ve got a product and a price now it’s time to promote it. Promotion looks at the many ways marketing agencies disseminate relevant product information to consumers and differentiate a particular product or service. Promotion includes elements like: advertising, public relations, social media marketing, email marketing, search engine marketing, video marketing and more. Each touch point must be supported by a well positioned brand to truly maximize return on investment.
  • Place – Often you will hear marketers saying that marketing is about putting the right product, at the right price, at the right place, at the right time. It’s critical then, to evaluate what the ideal locations are to convert potential clients into actual clients. Today, even in situations where the actual transaction doesn’t happen on the web, the initial place potential clients are engaged and converted is online.

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The politic of price in Mauritius – Food and beverages consumption as the perfect example

The politic of price is the one which appears the most in Mauritius, when it comes on first necessary products like food, beverages, clothing, accessories and on hobbies. As I mentioned before, Mauritians tend to rush wherever supermarkets and shops show promotions and sales, especially when there is flow of stocks. And most of the products that they buy for a cheaper price get damaged easily, create some negative impacts on their health and in their daily use… and also it creates negative impacts in their budget as well. Let’s take an example for food and beverages. Most of the time, people buy stuffs because of the promotion given on the actual price of the product in the market. They do it, either to obtain some special gifts, or they do it because their budget doesn’t allow them to have something better for an expensive price. The result is that, after having consumed those food and beverages products, the unavoidable happens after: people fall sick, and also they have to go to hospital, or to consult a doctor for check-up and for receiving short term or long term treatments. And Mauritius is one of the worst destinations crowded with people suffering with diabetes! Also, the costs get accumulated in their budget: Cost of public transportation for those who have to take a taxi or travel by bus; cost of fuel if they have their own transport to drive; cost of the consultation, treatments and medicines to follow… And above all, so much useless time spent to recover. And if we add all those additional expenses to the cheap food and beverage products that people consume every day, the budget explodes! So what is the need of buying something cheap for consumption, if afterwards it will create such a negative impact on our health and also on our expenses? And why not buying something expensive but efficient today, and which will make us saving money on those additional and also useless procedures to recover our health?

The politic of price on services… Especially when there are some promotional activities organized for tourism

Mauritius is very well known for being varied for its numerous touristic activities and attractions, which are developing more and more to promote tourism and to make of Mauritius one of the best touristic destinations worldwide. They are known to be very expensive, especially since they are high quality services proposed for the tourists, and which unfortunately are avoided by Mauritians themselves because they are too costly. Also, Mauritians can seize the opportunity for enjoying those activities only when there are some promotions shown on local newspapers, on TV or on the Internet. Personally, I already participated into some hotel activities which were cheaper during promotional campaigns for Mauritians, but which were of top quality. Unfortunately, when there are such promotional campaigns, those places are mostly crowdy and very few lucky people succeed into participating in them to have a good day, whereas the other ones have to wait and to queue for long hours until their turn comes up.

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The politic of product: From the newly designed high tech products to the good quality products which are inexistent on the market

The politic of product is more complex than the politic of price. You have two kinds of products that Mauritian people are looking for. In one hand, you have a product which is in vogue on the market, and that Mauritian people won’t hesitate to buy. In another hand, but in a rarer case, you have those kind of products which you will never find in the market, nor online, but which requires another kind of marketing by passing through tele-agents, agents or a chain of distribution. Let’s take an example about high tech products. My friend mentioned about the newly laptops and Iphones, who propose some attractive products which may damage easily if an accident occurs, since tactile screens are very delicate and need lots of caring for manipulation. If by accident your screen gets broken, or that you throw some liquid on it while it’s switched on, you will have to bring it to a supplier to repair it. It may take a lot of time to be repaired, and not only you will have to pay for the repair and maintenance of the product, but you will also have to repair for the purchase of some new accessories which will be useful to repair those products. Another kind of product which is rarer, but where the politic of product, this time, is positive, it’s regarding some high quality and durable products which are very expensive, not soldable on the market, and for which you need to pass through an agent of distribution or a chain of distribution. I remember having worked for the account of a chain of distribution, which was selling some high quality pads, which don’t exist on the market, but which had some special virtues on women’s health and comfort during menstruation, compared to other products on the market. I myself bought and tried those products, and they really had a different impact on my health, since I am someone who suffers a lot from menstruating belly pains and high fever. I really felt more comfortable wearing those pads, and was more active and productive in my daily life. But such products are rare, and for this you need to pass through an agent of distribution… and agents aren’t always efficient since they are known to perceive commissions on the product to enrich themselves, and are mostly known as dream sellers when they try to influence people, not only about the product, but also to talk about the product in the aim of making money and becoming more independent. The politics of place and product, then, work hand in hand there, especially in the Mauritian context.

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Promotion and Placement: A complex equation, but which works perfectly together for the politics of Price and Product

When you hear about the politic of Placement, it may automatically come in your mind that we are talking about the attractiveness of the shops and especially of the showcases of the shops as from first sight, the radius of supermarkets and the emplacement of those shops and supermarkets regarding their accessibility to the client. In shopping malls, it’s on that detail that shop owners and managers insist the most to attract their customers, either it may be in Mauritius or overseas. When there are some special promotional sales, some showcases present the products together with some stickers showing price reductions, and there we are following the politic of price. There are also some places, where you have shop owners or managers asking for you to come in their shops, either because there are some affordable prices on their products (especially in fairs like in Mauritius), or because they have some attractive products to show to clients, like in the Gold Souq of Dubai, but which necessitate that you haggle a lot with the suppliers since they will tend to give you some good products but at an expensive price, whereas in reality they don’t want to sell their best products and prefer proposing some cheap products instead. The more you haggle, the more they will come to a point that they will have to look for some more attractive products in their store to satisfy your needs. I remember, while writing those lines, that I have had that similar experience when I went to shop my wedding saree with my mother a decade ago. At first, in the shop, I was proposed some sarees which had very ordinary designs and which looked cheaper. But my mother haggled a lot with the shop sellers since she wanted a good product and not something cheap. After ten minutes of haggling, the shop seller finally found in her stock a very beautiful, heavy and attractive sari, which was very expensive, but of very good quality, even though it was heavy. This is the trick that is mostly found in such placements, because it’s a way for them to attract their customers and to, either making the customers paying immediately if they found the perfect item, or keeping the best product for later for being sold to a more fortunate customer.

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There is another politic of promotion which is also practised, either with a weak politic of placement, or without politics of placement, and which matches the best with the politic of product than the politic of price, the politic that you will never retrieve in open places, but behind open places, which is the concept of network marketing. This type of network marketing exists for high quality shops and products such as the well known Yves Rocher, Avon and even the Tupperware products, which exist in shops and supermarkets, but which are also sold through meetings or door to door with some agents, who perceive some commissions on the products and make you paying more expensive prices than on supermarkets, drugstores and in shops, since those products are different and of better quality compared to the ones retrieved in supermarkets, drugstores and shops. You also have some agents who operate for a specific shop selling products that you will never retrieve in any markets, but only in their specific shops only. Let’s take the example of the Stanhome products. I remember that, when I was still in Mauritius, I used to buy a lot of those products, which were of very high quality for the laundry and for housekeeping, and of course more durable and more expensive. We used to go in Stanhome shops to buy those products, and we even saw some agents taking the products there according to the demand of their clients, to be delivered at home and to allow the agents to perceive a commission on their sales. Same applied for the Aptamil infant milk, which we retrieve in drugstores and in supermarkets, but which are also delivered at home by agents when there is a high demand, and it allows the agent to perceive a commission on the number of items as well.

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The examples I gave you are examples of politic of promotion with weaker placement politic. But now, here are, and this is much rarer, other examples of politic of promotion without placement. Those types of promotion are more discreet, and much rarer, and most of the time criticized for being fraudulous. The first example I will cite is to have a product sold through a chain of distribution, which will allow you at the same time talking about the product and earning some money by being part of that chain of distribution. This is another type of network marketing, which is rarer as it concerns products that you will never retrieve in stores, nor in shops, nor in drugstores nor in supermarkets. I mentioned before about the sanitary pads I bought through that chain of distribution. But not only did I have to use the pads, but I was also influenced by the sellers to talk about the efficiency of the sanitary pad, by being at my turn a part of the chain of distribution, in exchange of being well remunerated in return. Unfortunately, that kind of network marketing, though it’s a very interesting concept, is known to be very fraudulous and known to be dream sellers for those who desperately need extra money for their families. I myself was part of that network marketing for a couple of months without my husband’s consent and had the bitter experience, by being all the time mistreated, criticized, my superiors being unsatisfied with my performances though I was giving the best of myself, and the worst in all was that I already had my own prospects when I started my own network within that chain of distribution, but I was never paid for what they dued to me! The worst was also that this chain of dsistribution wasn’t yet registered and was operating fraudulously for years!

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Another example that I have also experienced and which is also a rare case: Companies or people who promote themselves through their products or by being part of other products to have their business being fructified. A friend of mine once saw a documentary stipulating that there are some very affluent businessmen in India who are at the head of high business industries, and who promote their own image to make their business fructifying, by taking part into some soap operas or festivals, so that they would increase their audience more to have their business being fructified. That kind of promotion has a monetary aim, since those actors promote their images for allowing their businesses being fructified, but there are also people who promote themselves without any monetary aim, since they have some further ambitions to become rich and famous over the head of the people they influenced. Also, there, we shouldn’t talk about self promotion, but rather about self bragging. An example I have there is a local celebrity who organizes workshops, conferences and seminars for free in Mauritius, and who uses one of his books as a way to promote his own image, by freely distributing it with his audience after the conference, workshop or seminary is finished, so that he can attract more people besides him to give him his chance becoming more famous and to increase his chances for climbing the steps of his journey into politics. Those same kind of people who later will influence people to work for him for free, and who will afterwards enrich themselves over the back of their blind followers and victims. I never accepted that case before, but I may admit that all the people who were against him and who didn’t understand why he didn’t sell his book in libraries or online were completely right and saw the danger from afar.

CONCLUSION

For writing that article I didn’t really look for some examples from the Internet, since I succeeded into having some examples as per my personal experience, and which showed about the complexity of the 4 Ps nowadays, and which vary according to each consumer’s and each human being’s needs. The 4 Ps can match all together, partially together or separately according of each human being’s needs and there are no specific rules to interconnect them or not. But promotion and placement are the most dangerous actors among the 4 Ps since they are the most powerful tools to attract people as per their needs and as per their budget. It’s always important then to be well informed about the products, the side effects, what it will bring to your budget, and even be well informed on the placement and on the approach used for the selling of those products and regarding the quality of the product itself if we don’t want to be trapped. Unfortunately very few people will think about doing it before purchasing anything, since they are too much in a hurry to satisfy their needs, and they tend to do it mostly when they have either good or bad experiences with the product. So we should act quickly before it’s too late.

 

 

 

Women and Veil- When Occident and Orient meet

The idea of writing that blog post emerged from my mind since this morning, after I have finished replying to a friend’s email. However, since I am going to treat there a delicate matter in my writing, I will have to be very careful on how I will choose my words for not hurting anyone, though I am reputed for slapping people with my purposes and my too big frankness.

First of all, let’s see the cover picture of my blog post. This is a canvas oil painting entitled “The Orient and the Occident” by Belgian painter Nicaise de Keyser. It represents two women, an occidental one together with an oriental one. Both are topless, with some jewelleries, flowers and the oriental woman with a veil on her hair. That picture says it all, showing that whatever those women wear in their respective countries and cultures, they are both showing the same parts of their body together, and they are in perfect harmony with each other. If that painting showed it perfectly, then why is that so different in reality life? And how is it that the veil is such a taboo thing among the years for women?

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The Nasir al Mulk Mosque in Shiraz, Iran

During our latest email exchanges, I explained to my friend about our future projects to leave Seychelles for permanent settlement in Abu Dhabi, since my husband found a job there and that we may move in a couple of weeks, as long as we succeed into finding a school for our young son there. My friend mentioned that among the countries that he visited before, he would like again to visit Iran. Since I know very few about the Iranian culture, at the exception of what I see in the media regarding the conflicts between the American Government and the Iranian Government for Iran’s nuclear programme, I was in admiration in front of the beautiful wild mountainous and desert landscapes, filled with its worldwide unique architecture. But what attracted my attention the most was about the pictures of beautiful women in Iran. Some of them had lovely and colorful traditional clothes alike the ones worn by female characters from the 1001 Arabian Nights, some of them were wearing the traditional burqa in public… But most astonishing, some of them were also wearing a warrior quilt in Ancient Iran paintings… or were even dressed in sexy and modern outfits, which astonishingly resemble the kind of clothing worn nowadays by Occidental women, before the Islamic Revolution exploded in that country, as well as in several Middle Eastern countries in the world!

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I remember also having had a conversation with a Muslim friend of mine from Konkan, Maharashtra, India, where she mentioned about all the havoc made around the veil for women. She doesn’t understand how it could be that, when a Christian nun wears the veil, she is someone pious, whereas when a Muslim woman is wearing the veil, she is considered as oppressed.

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Indian model and actress Gaia Sophia Hayat, known before for her provocative looks, stunned the whole world after she turned into a nun.

I remember that recently, I was looking for some pictures of Lord Ganesha to send greetings to all my Hindu friends and relatives for the annual Hindu religious festival Ganpati, where the Elephant God Lord Ganesha is highly worshipped. While I was looking for those pictures, I saw a picture of Indian model and actress Gaia Sophia Hayat, who now became a nun, who was bowing before a statue of Lord Ganesha for that special occasion. The fact that such a hot item like her, who was reputed for her provocative dressings and hot scenes in front of the camera, created a shock through her reconversion as a nun, has created a huge vague of hatred and anger from all her fans, who treated her as someone hypocrite and who was mocking God and mocking herself, as per the comments from one of the readers, I quote, “The motive behind being a nun is to get away from limelight and help others,be near to god..but it seems she has become nun only to get more attention. What an idiot. Media is giving her what she wanted“. Maybe that reader was right, especially since Gaia is still in front of the camera to show her reconversion instead of being more discreet in front of the media. Also, are nuns really pious people nowadays, are acting by hypocrisy by pretending to be pious people? I remember also having read an article posted by a compatriot of mine regarding Mother Teresa, whom everyone worshipped as a Saint. According to that article, doctors don’t believe about any miracle from Mother Teresa, since all her patients and poor people have been cured in the same poor and insane hygienic conditions for decades and decades, instead of modernized hospitals which could provide better cures for the poor. The way the Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity still exercise through the years, despite the incredible economic boom in India, and the medical progress that they made and which put India among the best countries providing the best medical services and products, was purely described as a “museum of poverty”. And yet, lots of people still worship Mother Teresa as a saint, because she took the veil and did so many charity actions among all the years since the World War II.

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French-Cypriot hip hop singer Diam’s before and after her conversion to Islam

Now, let’s see another framework, the veil worn by the Muslim women. For those who never heard about her, I am introducing you French-Cypriot hip hop singer Diam’s, who was known for her incredible frankness in all her texts, in which she denounced about so many social facts such as child abuse, sexual allegations, the way education is promoted in schools, the actual French government, etc. Suddenly, Diam’s shocked the world by taking a decision of her own, converting herself to Islam.  According to an interview in French that she gave, and further to an autobiography that she wrote, simply entitled “Diam’s”, the ex Hip Hop artist revealed that she converted into Islam because it was a personal choice that she did after lots of deep reflections, and she clearly explained that wearing the veil should not be interpreted as an act made by women under oppression, exactly as per the image of my friend from Konkan, who proudly wears her veil when she goes for prayers together with her newly wed husband. Here is the translation of the purposes explained by Quebecois anthropologist Geraldine Mossiere regarding the choice of women to convert into Islam:

We can distinguish several types of conversions. First of all, “mystical” women, who are few numerous, who convert in Sufism and excel in their new religion within feminine communities. Then, the “love” conversion, which is the case for most of the women whom I met. Not necessarily converting themselves for marriage purposes, but as a gift, as a proof of love. It’s at the same time an intimate exchange and a religious fact. Through conversion, they show to the significant other that they are linked to him. Finally, I have met several women who showed high interest into the Arab world, language, trips… They converted within the framework of a more spiritual than religious aim. I have never been working in some regions where social oppression was strong, but according to me, there are very few imposed conversions.

Women whom I questioned had, for most of all, chosen to veil themselves. They veiled themselves after conversion, sometimes several years after. Most of them are “accommodating” and say “I wear the veil in public places, but I remove it when I arrive at office if I am asked to do so.” Others wear the veil in a mostly intransigent way and are forced to organize their life as per that choice. They then become housewives, independent workers or self-employed. They are then isolated from a part of working environment, but not from their social life.

Negative comments made on those conversions refer to a fear and a lack of historical knowledge on Islam. But it especially refers to a question of self choice from women in society. It’s an archaic meaningful reflex regarding the distinction between men and women. Some decades ago, it was hard to accept working women were considered as negative, as well nowadays, it’s hard to consider women who choose on their own to embrace Islam. Above the religious aspect, this is the continuity of the vision of the women being inferior to men, of the women who struggle to take their own decisions and to assume them. Regarding the burqa, several surveys demonstrate that women wearing it are, for the most of them, converted women.

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I really enjoyed reading the last paragraph of that interview, and which reflects whatever most of us judge behind the wearing of the veil by Muslim women. But, though the Quebecois anthropologist defended the veil wearing for Muslim women as a personal choice, there is still unfortunately a part of truth on what Occidental people think about the veil as an oppression clothing for women. Like I have mentioned before, I have seen several pictures of Middle Eastern women, mostly Persian women from Afghanistan and from Iran, and how they were dressed before the Iranian Revolution, known also as the Islamic Revolution, as per the picture that you saw above that paragraph. To better understand how suddenly women are forced to wear the veil in those countries, I saw that extract below from Wikipedia, which explained better how veil became a symbol of oppression in those countries, and no more a personal choice, and that it was mostly because of the political tensions which shook their beliefs during the Iranian Revolution:

Islamic Republic[edit]

Main article: Women in Iran

Women and the Iranian Revolution[edit]

Women participated heavily in the Iranian Revolution of 1979 that overthrew the Shah.[3][5][6]

When the Iranian Revolution started, in 1977, many women protested by marching in frequented areas and women chose to wear chadors as a sign of protest. Because the first Pahlavi Shah banned the use of the hijab, many women decided to show their favor for Ayatollah Khomeini, by wearing a chador, thinking that this would be the best way to show their support without having to be vocal.[7] Many women that did not previously choose to wear the chador (before the banning of the hijab) only wore this highly modest garb to show their high levels of support for the Ayatollah and aversion to the Shah. Another way the chador helped in Iranian society was it enabled women to be a unified force. Similar to many societies, women were separated into different social classes and by the use of the chador many would feel equality amongst all classes of women fighting for the same cause.

Not with-standing this, in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Khomeini severely curtailed rights that women had become accustomed to under the shah.[5] Within months of the founding of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the 1967 Family Protection Law was repealed; female government workers were forced to observe Islamic dress code; women were barred from becoming judges; beaches and sports were sex-segregated; the legal age of marriage for girls was reduced to 9 (later raised to 13); and married women were barred from attending regular schools.[3]

Almost immediately women protested these policies.[5][8] The Islamic revolution is ideologically committed to inequality for women in inheritance and other areas ofthe civil code; and especially committed to segregation of the sexes. Many places, from “schoolrooms to ski slopes to public buses”, are strictly segregated.[9]

Hijab[edit]

See also: Hijab

The hijab today in Iran includes the choice of either a chador or a roopoosh and veil. The chador is a highly modest, usually black or dark outfit that covers the top of a woman’s head and loosely covers her body to her feet. The roopoosh or manteau is a long top similar to a trench coat. “The dress needs to be appropriate according to the Islamic custom of hejab (veil): women are not required to be veiled in front of mahram relatives such as husband, father, son, brother, but are required to be “modest” if they are likely to be seen by na-mahram males.” [10]

The distinction between private and public space often depends on a woman’s social class. There are places that have an obvious public distinction such as markets, offices, and streets that are public to all; but when homes are considered there is a difference. Many upper-class homes in Iran have a reception room where na-mahram guests are received and entertained. This room is usually very well decorated and women typically do not go in this room but stay in the rest of the house while a guest is over. A woman that does not have a reception room in her house would have to rush to get properly dressed before her husband would answer the door. If a woman is by herself or just in the company of other women in the home, the door would not be answered because na-mahram men and women would not have business together.

“Bad hijab” ― exposure of any part of the body other than hands and face – is subject to punishment of up to 70 lashes or 60 days imprisonment.[11][12] In April 2007, the Tehran police, (which is under Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei‘s supervision), began the most fierce crackdown on what is known as “bad hijab” in more than a decade. In the capital Tehran thousands of Iranian women were cautioned over their poor Islamic dress and several hundred arrested.[13]

Finally, when I pasted those extracts, a question came in my mind: We all blame the wearing of veil as an oppression action above Muslim Women. But how is it that the veil for Christian women isn’t a symbol of oppression but as a symbol of respect? And the answer came from that Muslim Facebook member, who described the wearing of the veil as important as well for Christian women as per the Holy Bible, but unfortunately a tradition which doesn’t exist anymore among the generations and the fact that not wearing it anymore is highly appreciated worldwide instead of being blamed:

Hijab is not just for Islam, it is also a requirement in Christianity, and not just for the nuns.:

Corinthians 11:5-10 ‘but every woman that prayeth of prophesieth with her head uncovered, dishonoureth her head’.

Corinthians 11:13 ‘judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman prays unto God (with her head) uncovered’.

Why is it that people don’t want to ban nunn’s headcovering and clothes, but the whole world shakes and parliaments and governments hold emergency meetings when a young muslim girl puts on the hijab?

Is it because those who have usurped the rights of God can’t stand a pure muslim girl deciding to be obedient to God so then she must be freed from her oppression, must learn to be liberated, and her hijab must be banned ?

Muslim women wear it out of their OWN FREEWILL too. Majority of Muslim women dont cover their faces as it is not obligatory but the majority of scholars say that the face veil (niqab) is highly recommended.

And last, Catholics and some Christians have in their homes and churches pictures and statues of the supposedly Virgin Mary (may Allah be pleased with her) to whom they bow to in honor and she is covered like a Muslim… some of those same people look at Muslim women as oppressed, Subhana’allah this is schizophrenia at best!

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I wouldn’t end there by sharing you a part of my personal religious experience. As I mentioned in my blog post regarding my choice for embracing Hinduism after marriage, I was Roman Catholic, then Anglican, then Christian before total conversion to Hinduism after marriage. Before marriage, when I was praying at home or going to church, I never experienced the fact that I should wear a veil on my hair to go to church, like women used to do in Church in the 19th Century like demonstrated in some scenes from Brasilian Telenovela “Dona Beija“, which I loved watching together with my mother during my teenage years. Each time that I was going to church, I used to go without veil, as long as I was going there with a respectful dressing code. After conversion to Hinduism, I very rarely covered my head during prayers, except when I had to take part into prayers at home held by a Hindu Priest, or if I had to go to Temple as a part of respect. But when I prayed at home, I admit that by ignorance, I was praying with hair free, which was badly seen in Hinduism, since according to my elders, though I never could find any link with that, women who pray in Hindu temples with free hair are mostly depicted as Dayaans, who practise Hindu witchcrafts by worshipping Goddess Kali within some secret communities to fulfill the requests from their clients to cause trouble in their victims’ lives. But in several parts of India, though, it’s not depicted as obligatory to wear the veil to go to Temple and pray, and it’s just a question of social traditions, like the extract hereafter. But since I was asked by my elders not to pray hair free, then I always tie my hair with a clip, and at times wear a veil during family prayers and in temples:

 

Visitors and worshipers to Hindu temples are required to remove shoes and other footwear before entering. Additionally, it may be customary, particularly at South Indian temples, for men to remove shirts and to cover pants and shorts with a traditional cloth known as a vasthiram

Most rituals in North Indian temples are very simple in stark contrast to South Indian temples, which have elaborate practices. For example, a strict dress code exists for people who wish to enter the Guruvayur Temple. Men are to wear around their waist, without any dress covering their chest. Girls and women are not allowed to wear any trouser-like dresses or short skirts. They are allowed to wear a sari, and girls are to wear long skirts and blouses. Presently the dress code for women has been relaxed, and salwar kameezes or churidar pyjamas are being allowed.

North Indian temples often tend to be less orthodox. Like all other temples in India, footwear is strictly prohibited. Unlike in northern India, in Kerala and other southern Indian states, Hindu women do not cover their heads in temples. In traditional north Indian homes, women still cover their head in front of in-laws and elders as a sign of appreciation and respect. Thus, covering the hair in temples is mostly a north Indian custom and is not mandatory. It is an outward sign of displaying feelings of deep respect, humility and gratitude towards the Divine.

CONCLUSION

The veil being worn by women in society and during praise and worshiping still remains complex for all of us. Diam’s mentioned in a quote in French that people rose up the veils to sail, but they also succeeded into removing the veil that she had in front of her eyes. But according to me, where is the true place of the woman’s veil? In front of her eyes, like a mask to blind people, like Diam’s mentioned it? Or in all our body, but unveiling the eyes only? Antoine de St Exepury once wrote that we can only see clearly with the heart, and that the essential is invisible for the eyes. The picture below perfectly illustrates it… As well as it’s also very contradictory. Also, in that purpose, is it possible then to create a link between the heart and the eyes to allow both of them clearly see together?

 

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