The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith.
Pause for a second, and imagine a beautiful, strong, and majestic bird.
Its wingspan is huge and powerful, as it travels across large distances and rises to increasingly greater heights. Think of how much it can see and how much freedom it feels, as it travels where no human has ever gone before.
Now, imagine how this bird’s life and trajectory would change if one of its wings were broken. Its happiness would be lost, its progress would be hindered, and its freedom would be limited. It would be difficult for the bird to survive and impossible for it to thrive because it can no longer do what it was biologically designed to do — fly and soar. Unfortunately, humanity has a lot in common with this broken-winged bird.
The world of humanity has two wings—one is women and the other men. Not until both wings are equally developed can the bird fly. Should one wing remain weak, flight is impossible.
Right now, humanity’s flight remains challenged because we still have not established full equality and rights for women.
Injustices, such as violence against women, educational inequalities, and an underrepresentation of female leaders in the political and social sphere keep humanity from unlocking its full potential. Women’s strengths, creativity, experiences, and well-being remain undervalued, and their truth is often dismissed.
But, when women receive the same rights, respect, value, and opportunities as men, humanity’s future will be extraordinarily bright and life-giving.
Think of how much progress we will make when women have a seat at every table, where their perspectives are heeded and their insights valued as much as any man. Think of how successful our institutions can be when we have parity and equity in government, law, science and technology, media, and businesses.
Visualize how dignified and elevated our entertainment industry can become when women have the power to decide how they are seen and portrayed.
Imagine how marriages will become stronger when men and women feel equally understood, supported, and appreciated. Can you envision families in which both boys and girls are shown how to be empathetic, emotionally intelligent, and encouraged to pursue their dreams?
Baha’is believe that this future will be a reality. In fact, it is already unfolding.
The Baha’i writings say:
The world in the past has been ruled by force, and man has dominated over woman by reason of his more forceful and aggressive qualities both of body and mind. But the balance is already shifting; force is losing its dominance, and mental alertness, intuition, and the spiritual qualities of love and service, in which woman is strong, are gaining ascendancy.
We are living through a massive transition from a male-dominated world, to a world in which the “masculine and feminine elements” are “more evenly balanced.” We must all contribute to this rebalancing. The signs are clear: increasing natural disasters, pandemics, world wars, and instability. Mother Earth herself is crying out for our attention.
How can we make a difference? By learning to embody the qualities of love, justice, service, intuition, and awareness of the suffering and hopes of others. Women’s strengths and perceptions have been honed over thousands of years of oppression and inequity. It is time to lift up and listen to this half of the human race. Only then will humanity heal and peace on Earth be realized.