I consider my self a supporter of Feminism and a self identified feminist. I also identify with the principles of Zen Buddhism (living in the moment, the practice of letting go, etc.) In doing research on the history of Buddhism I found that, like other major religions, Buddhism is patriarchal in structure. What troubled me, and prompted this post, was that Buddhism has been called Misogynistic by such scholars as Rita Gross; but a more “flexible misogyny” whatever that means ( which I think is an oxymoron). There is even this quote by the Dali Lama using Gender Binary stereotypes:
“Warfare has traditionally been carried out primarily by men, since they seem better physically equipped for aggressive behavior. Women, on the other hand, tend to be more caring and more sensitive to others’ discomfort and pain. Although men and women have the same potentials for aggression and warmheartedness, they differ in which of the two more easily manifests. Thus, if the majority of world leaders were women, perhaps there would be less danger of war and more cooperation on the basis of global concern – although, of course, some women can be difficult! I sympathize with feminists, but they must not merely shout. They must exert efforts to make positive contributions to society. ”
My question to the Community is “How have you incorporated feminism and spirituality? and Do you have suggestions on how you dealt with parts of your own belief structure that may contradict with feminist equality?