indian women flout menstrual taboos by saying they\'re #happytobleed
But we never talked about menstruation.
Until two years ago.
We\'re in my kitchen.
You see, the insects have invaded my spice rack and I am annoyed that I have to throw away the yellow ginger.
Bai Anita insists that this happens when women are \"impure\" to cook --
That is to say, when they have a menstrual period.
She told me that the lady who came to menstruation was not allowed to enter the kitchen when she returned to the village south of Mumbai.
I am harvesting what I sow.
I have always known that in some parts of India women will be left out in their lifetime.
But in the cities of India, I always feel that menstruation is a private thing.
Even in big cities like Mumbai, where most Hindu temples put up signs that require menstrual women to stay away, I thought about the decision to pray --or not pray —
And the bleeding ended up between a woman and her God.
The decision became more public this fall.
It began at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala, dedicated to the Hindu God Sri Ayyappan.
Women of childbearing age have been banned from the temple for at least the last few hundred years, as the ascetic monk Ayyappan evades physical desires.
After 41 days of fasting and abstinence ceremonies, men are not only allowed to visit, but also alcohol and tobacco.
On November, the reporter asked Prayar Gopalakrishnan, the new chairman of the temple management committee, whether he would consider lifting the ban on women aged 10 to 50.
His answer was: \"One day there will be a machine to detect the \'right time\' for women to enter the temple, and that day they will be allowed to enter Sabrimala.
\"His remarks resonated with a student activist, his alias Nikita Azad)Azad says it\'s free).
Youth Ki Awaaz on the website (
Voice of Youth)
Azad wrote an open letter to Gopalakrishnan questioning this discrimination against natural biological functions.
\"Isn\'t all the people who enter the temple a product of the blood formed in the mother\'s womb? \" she wrote.
\"You have decided that I should not bring my contaminated blood into the temple.
But God gives someone the right to choose what I do with blood?
Azad then posted a picture on Facebook with hashtag happytob, which soon became popular.
Women in India and around the world have started using labels on Twitter and Facebook, and many have changed profile photos to portray sanitary napkins and tampon strips.
\"This is not a reaction.
Azad explained: \"temple movement.
\"This is against menstrual taboos because there is no room to talk about menstrual taboos that can affect health.
Many Hindu temples require women with periods to stay away.
Even Kamakhya Temple in Assam, which celebrates fertility and menstruation, has banned menstrual women.
\"Who knows when the ban started?
Khevana Desai, assistant professor of sociology at the mitibai College in Mumbai, said.
\"There is no logic.
\"In fact, the oldest classic of Hinduism, the Vedic scriptures, gently refers to the menstrual blood as kusum (flower), pushpa (blossom)and jivarakta (
The Giver of Life).
The laws governing Manu in ancient Hinduism are fairly neutral for menstruation.
Most scholars believe that there may be periods of impure views during the Middle Ages.
Avoiding menses is a way of getting the upper body
Desai says professional male priests are meant to protect their position at the top of the hierarchy.
She noted that many cultures and religions have strict regulations on menstruation.
In India, those who continue the taboo sometimes have a positive impact on it, saying it is a way to protect women.
\"The original idea might be to give women a break because they used to do a lot of hard physical work --
\"Collect water and harvest grain,\" said Desai . \".
A religious guru says this is because women with menstrual periods are too pure to enter the temple.
However, anthropologist and historian point out that the emergence of menstrual taboos in different cultures often coincides with the low status of women.
\"I think the idea that the patriarchal system adds impurities as a way to strengthen their hegemony,\" Desai said . \".
\"I see women avoiding and being seen as untouchable, sleeping on the jute mat rather than feeding on the same plate,\" Desai added . \".
Some traditions believe that leaves fall off if the shadow of the menstrual woman falls on certain plants.
It is clear, she said, that these beliefs are holding back rather than helping women.
But now more and more people are questioning the superstition, Desai said.
Many of my female friends and acquaintances have told me that they do not follow the old habits of their families --
A woman I recently met at a wedding said if she was explicitly banned from entering the temple during her menstrual period, \"I must go in.
\"On the Internet, Azad\'s happiness label not only caused a lot of tongue --in-
Discussions about menstrual cups and women\'s hygiene are also scattered.
Not everyone is interested in happiness: online reviewers name Azad and her supporters and tell them they should \"go abroad\" if they want to challenge the tradition of thousands of years\"
She noted that the vast majority of the attackers were men.
Azad and a number of other activists referred the issue of the Temple of Sabrimala to the National Women\'s Council of the Indian government to \"take a stand on menstrual taboos and discrimination across all religions \".
\"She wants the Commission to work towards a bigger goal: to provide free menstrual hygiene for all women.
At the same time, until that period
The probe machine was invented and a woman\'s monthly cycle is still between her and her God --
Of course, except in Sabrimala.