Some argue that during the Buddha Shakyamuni’s lifetime, and indeed in the recent history of Buddhism, there are indications of speciesism, gender inequality, and other shortcomings. The Buddha exemplified how we can manage these discrepancies when He initially rejected the monastic ordination of women until He was convinced by Ananda’s arguments regarding the identical capacity of women to attain enlightenment.
Although we take Refuge in the Three Jewels, the practice of the Dharma is necessarily a personal undertaking. We can observe and emulate the example of the Buddha Shakyamuni and our Teachers, study and contemplate the teachings of the Dharma, and gain strength and encouragement from the Sangha, our companions on the path, but we cannot relinquish or minimize our responsibility for our own practice. The Buddhas point the way, but we must walk the path.
In a less quoted section of the Kalama Sutra, the Buddha exhorts us:
When you yourselves know: “These things are good;
these things are not blamable; these things are praised by the wise;
undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness”,
enter on and abide in them.