The proverbial expression God couldn’t be everywhere, therefore He created Mothers, attributed to the noted British author and journalist Joseph Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936), is also traced to a Jewish proverb and appropriately modified to read with mothers yielding place to parents. The land’s ancient scholars, who are recognised as the authors of Upanishads, are often quoted by their counterparts in our times having prescribed the guidelines for one’s life with the words ‘Be one for whom the Mother is God, be one for whom the Father is God, be one for whom the Teacher is God, be one for whom the Guest is God’ (Taittiriya Upanishad). The land’s epics and other narratives to a great extent and also pages of its history to a lesser extent have respectively raised womanhood to the divine status as Goddesses and heroic icons of their periods. In a certain sense, the episodes in these texts of bygone centuries have bestowed less-than-life-size recognition to the males, for reasons not needed to seek. However, the family, in a strict sense, must have parents — mother and father — to say the obvious.
The mother’s outreach has progressed beyond the boundaries of her home, particularly in urban spaces, whereas the females have borne the brunt of agricultural activities for long, as is well-known to the land’s people at large. One may therefore find it a tad embarrassing to see God in women outside their homes, having entered the male bastion in a big way in our times.
The father in the family-fold, being fortunate to have the mother as his life’s partner, can afford to take it easy in the matter of a) Caring for the growing children, b) Preparing delicious dishes on an everyday basis, c) Keeping tidy the house environs, d) Attending on the guests arriving with or without prior information, e) Dealing with the moody domestic help with dexterity, f) Ensuring a stable balance in the family’s monthly balance sheet and so on, never to forget the needs of the father both during daytime and nightfall. In the unfortunate event of the father predeceasing the mother of the family, the latter often comes up trumps by rising to the occasion, more stoically than the reverse event of the lady departing ahead of the man.
The training of the growing teenage girl for moulding her to be a successful home-maker in adult-hood, a tradition traceable to an indeterminate past, has changed gear in our times, given the multi-tasking housewife unable to find time or energy after returning home from her work as teacher, doctor, bureaucrat, bank employee, legislator, social worker and what have you. Even God is a silent spectator to her plight of multi-tasking without adulation from her family.