It was epoch making when Buddhism declared men and women equal in India where women traditionally were regarded as inferior to men. After the death of Buddhism’s founder, Gautama Buddha, Buddhist monks, called
Hinayana Buddhists, became conservative and authoritarian and began to make light of women as well as lay believers. While the
Hinayana Buddhists discriminated against women, the
Mahayana Buddhists tried to improve women’s positions in society through their «Renaissance of Buddhism». Masatoshi Ueki discusses Nichiren’s impartial view of women and insists that the male and female principles are indispensable for the perfection of personality.