The Sex and Power Discussion Blog

This is part II of my contribution to the Jaipur Literary Festival this year which focuses on Buddhism. You can read part I here.  It’s another excerpt from the Buddhist period  in my book  Sex and Power (Sect II, pp.67-110).  The central argument of my book is that the concepts of sexuality and sexual morality in any society keep changing over time.  And it is the dominant forces–social, political, economic or religious–in any period of time that determine how that society views women, sex and sexual morality.

In the Buddhist period which stretches from about 500B.C. to 100A.D. Buddhism was one of the most powerful institutions, and the teachings of the Buddha impacted on social thinking at many levels.  In the first excerpt from my book I talk about how it revolutionized the concept of class and caste based equality and social justice.  But by the same…

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  1. We can only hope that the change is continuous and for the betterment of disenfranchised groups. The change is slow and hard fought though. With India’s attitudes towards women, and the USA/s attitudes towards women and gays and lesbians, we have living examples of that hard fought struggle and the resistance that ensues. Great piece you have here.

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