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Can women work outside the house for money? What is Krishna's view?

Certainly women CAN work outside the house for money; it's not sinful for them to work, nor does any Vedic authority specifically forbid it. But whether women SHOULD work outside for money is a different question.

In an ideal society, women wouldn't be required to work outside of the home to earn money. It's a man's job to offer sufficient support for his family so that the needs of the wife and children are met and everyone is peaceful and satisfied with whatever arrangements can be made.

Unfortunately, in modern society the cost of living—even simply—within modern cities is very high. Competition for education and jobs is very strong. Often, men are unable to take care of the needs of the family. In such cases it may be necessary for women to help maintain their family by working outside and contributing some money.

This is unfortunate, because women generally have other duties—raising children, cooking for the family, maintaining the house, etc. If these very important duties are neglected, there are serious consequences for the family and for the society. The best solution is that the family lives simply and supports itself with whatever the man is able to earn, by honest and diligent work, and the woman remains at home to assist in whatever way possible to keep the family happy and healthy.

Your other question, "what is Krishna's view?" is not so simple. This issue isn't just about women, but rather about the structure of society, the family and the culture in which they live. If the society isn't healthy, and the culture is unbalanced—placing too much emphasis on material things rather than encouraging spiritual growth by simple living and high thinking—then it will be difficult for anyone, women and children included, to remain satisfied and properly taken care of. It will be difficult for the man to provide sufficient income to meet the artificial wants and desires such an unbalanced society encourages. And so, people—women included—will be pushed into unnatural situations in order to maintain the status quo. We see this happening all over the world. The results are far-reaching and deleterious for human society as a whole.

Depleted resources, polluted air and water, lack of quality food, increased violence, disrespectful and unruly children, and so on, are all the consequences of a misguided society. If we want to change this—at least in our own lives—we need to start focusing on our spiritual life, on getting our pleasure from our relationship with the Supreme Person, Krishna, and living simply, as much as possible off the land and creating strong local economies which will support a realistic and wholesome lifestyle. Once we begin that work, women will naturally be more encouraged and happy to remain home and do their most important job of raising future generations by taking care of their families.

Laxmimoni dasi