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A Comprehensive Look: Pro and Cons of The Caste System

Hinduism believes in "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam(the world is one family - an ancient Vedic term). 

Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948) Was among India's most fervent nationalists, fighting for Indian independence from British rule. Gandhi was a staunch and devout Hindu and he proclaimed it proudly:

"I am a Hindu because it is Hinduism which makes the world worth living." (source: Young India 1-12-26).

He said that the caste system or varnashrama is "inherent in human nature, and Hinduism has simply made a science of it." 

He defended the "much-maligned Brahman" and entertains " not a shadow of doubt" that "if Brahmanism does not revive, Hinduism will perish".

"Hinduism insists on the brotherhood of not only all mankind but of all that lives." 

(source: Hindu Dharma - M. K. Gandhi p. 7-374 and  Harijan 28-3-1936).

Refer to Caste games: Battleground India - hinduhumanrights.info

Sri Aurobindo (1872-1950) most original philosopher of modern India. Education in England gave him a wide introduction to the culture of ancient, or mediaeval and of modern Europe. He was described by Romain Rolland as ' the completest synthesis of the East and the West.'  This is what he observed about caste:

"Caste was originally an arrangement for the distribution of functions of society, just as much as class in Europe, but the principle on which the distribution was based in India was peculiar to this country.

"A Brahmin was a Brahmin not by mere birth, but because he discharged the duty of preserving the spiritual and intellectual elevation of the race, and he had to cultivate the spiritual temperament and acquire the spiritual training which alone could qualify him for the task.

The Kshatriya was a Kshatriya not merely because he was the son of warriors and princes, but because he discharged the duty of protecting the country and preserving the high courage and manhood of the nation, and he had to cultivate the princely temperament and acquire the strong and lofty Samurai training which alone fitted him for his duties.

So it was with the Vaishya whose function was to amass wealth for the race and the Shudra who discharged the humbler duties of service without which the other castes could not perform their share of labour for the common good. Essentially there was, between the devout Brahmin and the devout Shudra, no inequality in the single 'virAt purusa' [Cosmic Spirit] of which each was a necessary part.

Chokha Mela, the Maratha Pariah, became the Guru of Brahmins proud of their caste purity; The Chandala taught Shankaracharya: for the 'Brahman' was revealed in the body of the Pariah and in the Chandal there was the utter presence of Shiva the Almighty."

 

    

Chokha Mela and Shankaracharya

Chokha Mela, the Maratha Pariah (lower caste) became the Guru of Brahmins proud of their caste purity; The Chandala taught Shankaracharya: for the 'Brahman' was revealed in the body of the Pariah and in the Chandal there was the utter presence of Shiva the Almighty."

***

Caste therefore was not only an institution which ought to be immune from the cheap second-hand denunciations so long in fashion, but a supreme necessity without which Hindu civilisation could not have developed its distinctive character or worked out its unique mission. But to recognize this is not to debar ourselves from pointing out its later perversions and desiring its transformation. It is the nature of human institutions to degenrate, to lose their vitality and decay, and the first sign of decay is the loss of flexibility and oblivion of the essential spirit in which they were conceived. The spirit is permanent, the body changes; and a body which refuses to change must die. 

The spirit expresses itself in many ways while remaining essentially the same, but the body must change to suit its changing environments if it wishes to live. There is no doubt that the institution of caste degenerated. It ceased to be determined by spiritual qualifications which, once essential, have now come to be subordinate and even immaterial and is determined by the purely material tests of occupation and birth. By this change it has set itself against the fundamental tendency of Hinduism which is to insist on the spiritual and subordinate the material, and thus lost most of its meaning. The spirit of caste arrogance, exclusiveness and superiority came to dominate it instead of the spirit of duty, and the change weakened the nation and helped to reduce us to our present condition."

(source: India's Rebirth - By Sri Aurobindo).

Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902) was the foremost disciple of Ramakrishna and a world spokesperson for Vedanta. India's first spiritual and cultural ambassador to the West, came to represent the religions of India at the World Parliament of Religions, held at Chicago in connection with the World's Fair (Columbian Exposition) of 1893. His Chicago speech is uniquely Vedantic. Jawaharlal Nehru refers to this universal dimension of Vivekananda in his Discovery of India. “Rooted in the past, and full of pride in India’s heritage, Vivekananda was yet modern in his approach to life’s problems, and was a kind of bridge between the past of India and her present.”

He said: 

"Caste is a plan we want to follow- - .There is no country in the world without caste. The plan in India is to make everybody a Brahmin, the Brahmin being the ideal of humanity. Indian caste is better than the caste that prevails which prevails in Europe or America." 

"Caste is a very good thing. Caste is the plan we want to follow. What caste really is, not one in a million understands. There is no country in the world without caste. Caste is based throughout on that principle. The plan in India is to make everybody Brahmana, the Brahmana being the ideal of humanity. If you read the history of India you will find that attempts have always been made to raise the lower classes. Many are the classes that have been raised. Many more will follow till the whole will become Brahmana. That is the plan.

As there are sattva, rajas and tamas - one or other of these gunas more or less - in every man, so the qualities which make a Brahmana, Kshatriya, Vaishya or a Shudra are inherent in every man, more or less. But at time one or other of these qualities predominates in him in varying degrees and is manifested accordingly. Take a man in his different pursuits, for example : when he is engaged in serving another for pay, he is in Shudra-hood; when he is busy transacting some some piece of business for profit, on his account, he is a Vaishya; when he fights to right wrongs then the qualities of a Kshatriya come out in him; and when he meditates on God, or passes his time in conversation about Him, then he is a Brahmana. Naturally, it is quite possible for one to be changed from one caste into another. Otherwise, how did Viswamitra become a Brahmana and Parashurama a Kshatriya? 

The means of European civilization is the sword; of the Aryans, the division into different varnas. This system of division into varnas is the stepping-stone to civilization, making one rise higher and higher in proportion to one's learning and culture. In Europe, it is everywhere victory to the strong and death to the weak. In the land of Bharata (India), every social rule is for the protection of the weak. Such is our ideal of caste, as meant for raising all humanity slowly and gently towards the realization of the great ideal of spiritual man, who is non-resisting, calm, steady, worshipful, pure and meditative. In that ideal there is God. "

We believe in Indian caste as one of the greatest social institutions that the Lord gave to man. We also believe that through the unavoidable defects, foreign persecutions, and above all, the monumental ignorance and pride of many Brahmanas who do not deserve the name, have thwarted in many ways, the legitimate fructification of this glorious Indian institution, it has already worked wonders for the land of Bharata and it destined to lead Indian humanity to its goal. Caste should not go; but should be readjusted occasionally. Within the old structure is to be life enough for the building of two hundred thousand new ones. It is sheer nonsense to desire the abolition of caste.

It is in the nature of society to form itself into groups; and what will go will be these privileges! Caste is a natural order. I can perform one duty in social life, and you another; you can govern a country, and I can mend a pair of old shoes, but that is no reason why you are greater than I, for can you mend my shoes? Can I govern the country? I am clever in mending shoes, you are clever in reading Vedas, that is no reason why you should trample on my head; why if one commits murder should he be praised and if another steals an apple why should he be hanged? This will have to go.

Caste is good. That is only natural way of solving life. Men must form themselves into groups, and you cannot get rid of that. Wherever you go there will be caste. But that does not mean that there should be these privileges. They should be knocked on the head. If you teach Vedanta to the fisherman, he will say, "I am as good a man as you, I am a fisherman, you are a philosopher, but I have the same God in me, as you have in you." And that is what we want, no privilege for anyone, equal chances for all; let everyone be taught that the Divine is within, and everyone will work out his own salvation. The days of exclusive privileges and exclusive claims are gone, gone for ever from the soil of India.

(source: Swami Vivekananda On India and Her Problems and The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda Kolkata,1985, Vol V, pp 215).

Sir Rustom Pestonji Masani (1876 -   )  a Parsi, distinguished himself when he was elected as the first Indian national to become Municipal Commissioner of Mumbai. Author of Zoroastrianism: the religion of the good life he points out:  

“The seers of the early Vedic period know nothing of caste. Delve as much as one may into the literature of the period, one discovers only classes not castes. …the conception of social segregation and untouchability was repugnant to the genius of the people who sought unity in variety and dissolved variety in unity. Each class was regarded as an integral part of the fabric of society. Each submitted cheerfully to the special functions and duties assigned to it. Even the Sudra appears to have been content with his mission in life; and there were no agitators abroad to sow in the minds of the proletariat the seeds of discontent. There appeared to have been a tacit understanding that different classes of individuals stood at different stages of evolution and that, therefore, the duties, modes of life, and rules of conduct applicable and helpful to each must necessarily differ. The differentiation was, however, regarded only as a means to an end, not an end in itself. It assigned to each individual his due position in the social order; it regulated his relation with other members of the community, and provided means for his orderly development, eliminating possibilities of a clash of interests between master and servant, landlord and tenant, capital and labor, state and subject.”  

"According to Hindu philosophy divine energy manifests itself in different degrees according to the preponderance in each person of one or other of the three gunas, or fundamental qualities, which make up the prakriti or nature, of an individual. These gunas are sattva, rajas and tamas. It follows, therefore, that for his own salvation as well as for social efficiency an individual should be allowed to develop along the lines best suited to his natural endowments and that he on his part should perform the duties assigned to him in accordance with the predominant quality of the strand in his nature. The well-known episode of Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita is a typical illustration of this philosophy of life. Dismayed, he refuses to fight; but Lord Krishna, the preacher, prevails upon him to discharge the duty proper to his Kshatriya caste."  

"There is nothing, however, in the whole body of Sanskrit literature to show that the caste system was deliberately devised as a means to attain the coveted end of realizing the divine within man. A remarkable and almost unique feature of Hindu culture is the process of minute analysis and synthesis to which it subjects from time to time the phenomena which leave their impress upon the senses and the mind and the unchangeable soul. Such an exposition has helped succeeding generations to grasp the significance of the philosophic doctrines underlying the social and religious systems of a race excelling in spiritual speculations and metaphysical subtleties."

 

 

"According to the Rig Veda hymn, the different classes sprang from the four limbs of the Creator. It was meant to show that the four classes stood in relation to the social organization in the same relation as the different organs of the Primordial Man to his body. Together they had to function to give vitality to the body politic. There was nothing in that account to warrant the assumption, that the order in which the four groups were mentioned, or that the particular limbs specified as their origin, marked their social status."

"A person’s worth is determined by his knowledge and capacity and the inherent qualities which mark his conduct in life. “The four fold division of castes’ says the Creator in the Bhagavad Gita, “was created by me according to the apportionment of qualities and duties.” “Not birth, not sacrament, not learning, make one dvija (twice-born), but righteous conduct alone causes it.” “Be he a Sudra or a member of any other class, says the Lord in the same epic, “he that serves as a raft on a raftless current , or helps to ford the unfordable, deserves respect in everyway.”

(source: Legacy of India - edited by G T Garratt - Oxford At the Clarendon Press  p. 132 - 140).

Sardar Kavalam Madhava Panikkar (1896-1963) Indian scholar, journalist, historian from Kerala, administrator, diplomat, Minister in Patiala Bikaner and Ambassador to China, Egypt and France. Author of several books, including Asia and Western Dominance, India Through the ages and India and the Indian Ocean. 

He says:

“The fact is that the four-fold caste is merely a theoretical division of society to which tribes, clans and family groups are affiliated. It is a sociological fiction. The earliest available literature gives instances of Brahmins carrying on the professions of medicine, arms and administration."

"In the Jatakas Brahmins are mentioned as traders, hunters and trappers. R P Masani quotes the case of a Kshatriya prince, Kusa, mentioned in one of the Jataka tales, who became an apprentice in turn to a potter, a basket maker, a florist and a cook. Conversely, from even the Vedic days there have been innumerable instances of men born in the lowest rank of caste-society taking to professions which in theory were the monopoly of the other castes. Even the Mauryas royal family came from among the Sudras.”

(source: Hindu Society at cross roads - By K M Panikkar  p. 1 - 17).

Dr. A. L. Basham, one of the leading authority of ancient Indian culture and author of The Wonder That Was India noted:

"Caste is a word which in most minds is most strongly connected with Hindu social order but this practice did not exist in the ancient India."

(source: The Wonder That Was India - By A L Basham).

P. D. Ouspensky ( ? ) a thoughtful Western writer is of the opinion that "All the most brilliant period of history, without exception, were periods in which the social order approached the caste system." He thinks that the caste system (varna vyavastha) "is a natural division" of society. "Whether people wish it or not, whether they recognize it or not, they are divided into four castes. There are Brahmans, there are Kshatriyas, there are Vaishyas, and there are Shudras. No human legislation, no philosophical intricacies, no pseudo-sciences and no form of terror can abolish this fact. And the normal functioning and development of human societies are possible only if this fact is recognized and acted on."

(source: A New Model of the Universe - By P. D. Ouspensky  p. 447). 

Sir George Birchwood ( ? ) has said:

"So long as the Hindus hold on to the caste system, India will be India; but from the day they break from it, there will be no more India. That glorious peninsula will be degraded to the position of a bitter "East End" of the Anglo-Saxon Empire."

(source: The Discovery of India - By Jawaharlal Nehru. Oxford University Press. 1995. p. 247).

Dr. Subramanium Swamy (1939 -  )  He is also a reputed economist and worked as Assistant Economic Affairs Officer, United Nations Secretariat, New York in 1963. He worked with two Nobel laureates, Simon Kuznets and Paul A. Samuelson for his doctorate in economics at the Harvard University, awarded in 1965. He is the President of the Janata Party and author of the book, Hinduism under Siege. In an interview with a Canadian TV station he has remarked:

"Caste system was originally not designed as mutually antagonistic groupings. It was not even connected to birth. It is one of retrogression that caste has been connected to birth. The sages in their discussions on why caste system should be created had said that there are four sources of power in society – knowledge, wealth, weapons and land and thus all these should not be in any one hands. In fact one should be in the hands of one person. Therefore if you are a pursuer of knowledge, a teacher of knowledge you should have no wealth, weapons or land. Society should give you donations so that you could live – that is how our preachers, sannysis, religious preceptors etc. they lived in society and taught people but donations came from the public. If you were the owner of weapons then you were the King but you could not make policy - for policy you had to go to people of knowledge – same thing with wealth and land."

(source: Dr. Subramanian Swamy interview on Hinduism with CTS TV Canada - By Richard Landou).

Refer to London is most unequal city in Western world with gap between rich and poor widest since slavery - By Steve Doughty - dailymail.co.uk and British rioters the spawn of a bankrupt ruling elite – By Theodore Dalrymple

Rev. William H Robinson (1955 - ) in his book By Temple Shrine and Lotus Pool p. 66 writes:  

“The fortress of caste cannot be taken by external assault. Its wall will only crumble when the garrison within ceases to repair them. The only real discipline that India has maintained is the discipline of caste. If you really could create genuine democracy in India it would destroy caste. If it destroyed caste it would destroy Hinduism and if it destroyed Hinduism it would destroy India , at least the India that has existed for so many thousands of years….Far far better that they should remain good Hindus than become rampant atheists!

(source: The Raj Syndrome: A Study in Imperial Perceptions - By Suhash Chakravarty. Penguin Books. 1991 p. 69 - 239).  For more refer to the book online - digilib. bu.edu.

Caste is the cornerstone of Hindu society

Radha Rajan is editor of vigilonline. She has recently observed:

"Caste is not intrinsic to Hindusim, jaatikula and varna are not only intrinsic to Hinduism, they are in fact the cornerstones of our society; a self-respecting and respectful Hindu does not wish away aspects of his dharma or apologize for it.

While individuals or individual families may give up by choice, their jati, kula, varna, gotra, bhumi and even their mother for their own reasons, as indeed have innumerable English-educated, upwardly mobile and deracinated Hindus around the world, the very idea of shaking or dislodging the three cornerstones of jaatikula and varna of an entire society is diabolic because this is actually an attempt to denude Hindu society of all civilisational values contained in jatikula and varna dharma. Forces which know very well the place and role of jatikula and varna in Hindu society, want to discredit and eventually destroy them, so that they can fill the ensuing vacuum with one of the Abrahamic monotheisms or Abrahamic economic ideologies."

It is jatikula and varna which makes Hindu society diverse and Hindu dharma an ever-relevant and dynamic principle. Without them, we would be just another intolerant monotheist culture. Hindu society remains largely autonomous, power is broad-based and culture is diverse only because of jatikula and varna. To melt them all down to Portuguese ‘caste’ and then destroy it is Abrahamic evil intent; and this group of American PIOs is playing right into its hands.

(source: Hindu American Foundation’s motivated ‘report’: Cast in hubris and deception – By Radha Rajan - bharatabharati).

Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji ( ? ) of the India Heritage Research Foundation defines:  

"The Caste system as you see it today is not was originally simply a division of labor based on personal, talents tendencies and abilities. It was never supposed to divide people. Rather, it was supposed to unite people so that everyone was simultaneously working to the best of his/her ability for the greater service of all. In the scriptures, when the system of dividing society into four groups was explained, the word used is “Varna.” Varna means “class” not “caste.” Caste is actually “Jati” and it is an incorrect translation of the word “varna.” When the Portuguese colonized parts of India, they mistakenly translated “varna vyavasthaa” as “caste system” and the mistake has stayed since then. 

The varna system was based on a person’s characteristics, temperament and their innate “nature.” The Vedas describe one’s nature as being a mixture of the three gunas – tamas, rajas and sattva. Depending on the relative proportions of each of these gunas, one would be classified as a Brahmin, Kshetriya, Vaishya or Shudra. For example, Brahmins who perform much of the intellectual, creative and spiritual work within a community have a high proportion of sattva and low proportions of tamas and rajas. A kshetriya who is inclined toward political, administrative and military work has a high proportion of rajas, a medium proportion of sattva and a low proportion of tamas. A Vaishya who performs the tasks of businessman, employer and skilled laborer also has a high proportion of rajas but has relatively equal proportions of sattva and tamas, both of which are lower than rajas. Last, a shudra who performs the unskilled labor in society has a high proportion of tamas, a low proportion of sattva and a medium proportion of rajas. 

These gunas are not inherited. They are based on one’s inherent nature and one’s karma. Therefore one’s “varna” was also not supposed to be based on heredity, and in the past it was not. It is only in relatively modern times that the strict, rigid, heredity-based “caste” system has come into existence. There are many examples in the scriptures and in history of people transcending the “class” or “varna” into which they were born. Everyone was free to choose an occupation according to his/her guna and karma. 

Further, according to the scriptures, there is no hierarchy at all inherent in the varna system. All parts are of equal importance and equal worth. A good example is to imagine a human body. The brain which thinks, plans and guides represents the Brahmin caste. The hands and arms which fight, protect and work represent the kshetriya caste. The stomach which serves as the source of energy and “transactions” represents the vaishya caste, and the legs/feet which do the necessary running around in the service of the rest of the body represent the shudra caste. No one can say the brain is better than the legs or that hands are superior to feet. Each is equally important for the overall functioning of the body system. They just serve different roles. " Look at Bhagwan Ram and Bhagwan Krishna. Both show the example of taking their food from even people of the lowest caste and going to the homes of the lower caste people. It is devotion, purity and commitment which make us great or small, not our caste.

(source: The Caste system - By Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji - India Heritage Research Foundation).

M V Nadkarni ( ?) writes:

"It is necessary to demolish the myth that caste system is an intrinsic part of Hinduism. This myth is believed by orthodox elements within Hinduism and also is propagated by elements outside Hinduism with the mischievous intent of proselytising. Even Vedic and classical Hinduism – not only does not support the caste system, but has taken lots of pains to oppose it both in principle and practice, making it obvious that caste system is not an intrinsic part of Hindu canon, philosophy and even practice.

It is only in the dharmashastras (dharma sutras and smritis) that we find support to the caste system, and not in other canon. However, dharmashastras never had the same status as other canon known as shruti (Vedas and Upanishads) and it is laid down that whenever there is a conflict between the shruti and smriti literature, it is the former that prevails. It is Manusmriti, which is particularly supportive of caste system but where it conflicts with Vedas and Upanishads, the latter would prevail. Though Bhagvadgita (Gita) is not regarded as a part of shruti, Gita is highly regarded as sacred and is very much a part of classical Hinduism. As we shall just see even the Gita is against caste system based on birth, and not supportive to it. Thus, to the extent that dharmashastras conflict with shruti and the Gita, the latter prevails. Apasthambha dharmasutra may have supported untouchability, but it seems to be read more by those who like to attack Hinduism with it than by its followers! It is hardly regarded as canon, even if any Hindu has heard of it.  Vedanta philosophy declares that there is divinity in every lecture. Rg Veda emphasises equality of all human beings. It goes to the extent of saying, which sounds quite modern: ‘No one is superior, none inferior. All are brothers marching forward to prosperity’ "

(source: Is Caste System Intrinsic to Hinduism? Demolishing a Myth - By M V Nadkarni - Economic and Political Weekly - November 8' 2003).

Dr. Pankaj Jain  ( ? )  is an Assistant Professor of South Asian Religions and Ecology at the University of North Texas. He has taught Indian Films, Sanskrit, Hindi/Urdu languages, and literatures at North Carolina State University, Rutgers, Kean University, Jersey City University, and the University of Iowa. In his scholarship he connects the ancient Indic traditions of Hinduism and Jainism with contemporary issues - particularly the environment.  He has observed:

"Varna vyavastha (literally, the class system) remains one of the most interesting and debatable topics in the study of Vedic culture. Since the Vedas remain an unraveled mystery even today due to the archaic Sanskrit in which they were composed, much of the ancient social history is derived from the extrapolation from the later history of Indian society. While most of the modern scholarship on this issue applies Marxist and Weberian themes to interpret this, I endeavor to take a fresh approach to demonstrate some of the lesser-known aspects of this system.

The Original System

The varna system illustrates the spirit of comprehensive synthesis, characteristic of the ancient Indian mind with its faith in the collaboration of races and the cooperation of cultures. Paradoxical as it may seem, the system of varna was the outcome of tolerance and trust. Though it may now have degenerated into an instrument of oppression and intolerance and tends to perpetuate inequality and develop the spirit of exclusiveness, these unfortunate effects were not the central motives of the varna system. The system of varna insisted that the law of social life should not be cold and cruel competition, but harmony and co-operation. Society should not be a field of rivalry among individuals. The varnas were not allowed to compete with one another. Varna divisions were based on individual temperament, and which were not immutable. Originally varnas were assigned to people based on their aptitude and qualities, but in later periods they were assigned based on birth. However, there are a number of exceptions in the entire period that shows the flexibility of the system.

This system ensured that the religious, political, financial and physical powers were all separated into four different social classes. Due to this fair separation of political and intellectual powers, ancient Indian society could not turn itself into a theocratic or autocratic society.

In the beginning, there was only one varna in the ancient Indian society. "We were all brahmins or all sudras," says Brhadaranyaka Upanisad (1.4, 11-5, 1.31) and also Mahabharata (12.188). A smrti text says that one is born a sudra, and through purification he becomes a brahmin.

Does the varna system treat human beings unequally, with the brahmins at the top of the hierarchy and the sudras at the bottom? This is a common observation about the system which is based on the modern caste system rather than the ancient varna system. It is rarely observed that the social hierarchy is not just limited to Hinduism but it stays intact in any Indian religious society; Buddhists, Jainas, Sikhs, Christians and Muslims have their own caste hierarchies and restrictions. Even western societies have their own classes and groups. Thus, it is indeed a social phenomenon, which is not just limited to Hinduism or India. J. Muir has provided numerous passages from ancient Indian texts to demonstrate the equality of varnas.

Varna system is one of the most debatable phenomena of India and is tarred with many controversies. However, on a deeper analysis one finds that the basic need for this system was simply to ensure a healthy and flexible society unlike the one which has been rigidified due to the colonial misinterpretation and mistreatment of varnas, resulting in the castes as we find them in the present day India . The original varna system was quite flexible in which one's varna could be changed based on one's skill and was not fixed as is often understood."

(source: The Caste system of the Hindu Society - By Dr. Pankaj Jain - huffingtonpost.com).

John Burdon Sanderson Haldane (1892- 1964) the world-renowned geneticist. In 1922, he joined Cambridge University to take up research in biochemistry. Among his significant contributions is an estimate of the rate of mutation of a human gene. Some of his famous books are The Causes of Evolution, New Paths in Genetics and Biochemistry of Genetics.

He immigrated to India and soon found himself attracted to Hindu culture. Himself a rationalist, Haldane told his colleagues, “I do not think that a Rationalist and Humanist need necessarily break with Hinduism.” He watched with disdain the way the socialist government machinery rooted in sycophancy and corruption, was developing a stranglehold on the budding Indian science. The stranglehold on the progress of India, as Haldane observed was of a socialist government's making and not that of the Dharma. He wrote:

“The old caste system had this merit, that the richest merchant or Zamindar could not buy the status of Brahmin for his son, even if the son was learned and pious. Whatever the defects of that system – and I think that they were and are grievous – it was not subservient to wealth. The new caste system, which the university administrative authorities, with the connivance of many government officials, are trying with some success to impose upon India, has no such excuse…. In India today the unworthy successors of Durvasa and Vishvamitra actually invite governors, vice-chancellors, and the like, to address them. This may be a relic of British Rule. If so, it is a regrettable one.”

(source: A passage to India - By JBS Haldane 1958 and Science and Indian Culture - By JBS Haldane  1991 p.19 & p.24. For more on J B S Haldane, refer to chapter on Quotes).

(Note: Casteism pales in comparison with 50 million Africans killed in slave boats, 200+ years of slavery with church justification of Africans having no soul, lynchings of young African Americans, decimation of Native Americans with things like disease infected blankets, colonization of Africa, Americas and Asia and sapping their economy totally causing famines and living skeletons, Nazi holocaust of 10 million, burning of witches. Refer to Hinduism Under Threat - protectreligions.org).  

Professor R. Vaidyanathan is Professor of Finance at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore has observed:

"The metropolitan elite and rootless experts have concluded that caste is bad. They have made it so that every Indian is expected to feel guilty at the mention of caste. Internationally, caste is a convenient stick to flay anything Indian, its religions, customs, culture.

But the caste system is undeniably a valuable social capital, which provides a cushion for individuals and families to deal with society and the state.

The Western model of atomising every individual to a single element in a right-based system and forcing the individual to have a direct link with the state has destroyed families and erased communities. Every person stands alone, stark naked, with only rights as his imaginary clothes to deal directly with the state.

While attacking the caste system, Indian intellectuals have borrowed the Western right-based concept of reservation, or affirmative action. In doing so, they have overlooked an extraordinary contribution of the caste system, in consolidating business and entrepreneurship in India , particularly in the last fifty years."

(Note: Prof. Vaidyanathan of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, has spent years researching the role of jati-based economic empowerment. He cites World Bank and Indian government statistics to show that a large number of jati-based groups have used their internal cohesion to rapidly climb up the economic ladder. This phenomenon is what has made the "bottom of the pyramid" (a term coined by C.K. Prahalad) thrive in India, and has turned the rural areas into the fastest growing markets for industry. Critique of Hindu American Foundation's Report on 'Caste' – By Rajiv Malhotra).

M. N.Srinivas, the late great sociologist, said in Collected Essays brought out by the Oxford University Press in 2005, 

“An important feature of social mobility in modern India is the manner in which the successful members of the backward castes work consistently for improving the economic and social condition of their caste fellows. This is due to the sense of identification with one’s own caste, and also a realisation that caste mobility is essential for individual or familial mobility.”

“The caste system is far from a rigid system in which the position of each component caste is fixed for all time. Movement has always been possible, and especially so in the middle regions of the hierarchy. A low caste was able, in a generation or two, to rise to a higher position in the hierarchy by adopting vegetarianism and teetotalism, and by Sanskritizing its ritual and pantheon.” (Srinivas 1952: 127).


Caste is a stick to beat India with and for the West to interfere in her internal affairs

'Caste' is Now a Dangerous Geopolitical Game

***
 

Dr. Koenraad Elst (1959 -) Dutch historian, born in Leuven, Belgium, on 7 August 1959, into a Flemish (i.e. Dutch-speaking Belgian) Catholic family. He graduated in Philosophy, Chinese Studies and Indo-Iranian Studies at the Catholic University of Leuven. He is the author of several books including The Saffron Swastika, Decolonising The Hindu Mind - Ideological Development of Hindu Revivalism and Negationism in India: Concealilng the Record of Islam

He has written why Christian missionaries attacked the caste system. 

'The caste system is often portrayed as the ultimate horror. Inborn inequality is indeed unacceptable to us moderns, but this does not preclude that the system has also had its merits.

Caste is perceived as an "exclusion-from," but first of all it is a form of "belonging-to," a natural structure of solidarity. For this reason, Christian and Muslim missionaries found it very difficult to lure Hindus away from their communities. Sometimes castes were collectively converted to Islam, and Pope Gregory XV (1621-23) decreed that the missionaries could tolerate caste distinction among Christian converts; but by and large, caste remained an effective hurdle to the destruction of Hinduism through conversion. That is why the missionaries started attacking the institution of caste and in particular the brahmin caste. This propaganda has bloomed into a full-fledged anti-brahminism, the Indian equivalent of anti-Semitism.

Every caste had a large measure of autonomy, with its own judiciary, duties and privileges, and often its own temples. Inter-caste affairs were settled at the village council by consensus; even the lowest caste had veto power. This autonomy of intermediate levels of society is the antithesis of the totalitarian society in which the individual stands helpless before the all-powerful state. This decentralized structure of civil society and of the Hindu religious commonwealth has been crucial to the survival of Hinduism under Muslim rule. Whereas Buddhism was swept away as soon as its monasteries were destroyed, Hinduism retreated into its caste structure and weathered the storm.

Caste also provided a framework for integrating immigrant communities: Jews, Zoroastrians and Syrian Christians. They were not only tolerated, but assisted in efforts to preserve their distinctive traditions. 

Nineteenth-century Westerners projected the colonial situation and the newest race theories on the caste system: the upper castes were white invaders lording it over the black natives. This outdated view is still repeated ad-nauseam by anti-Hindu authors: now that "idolatry" has lost its force as a term of abuse, "racism" is a welcome innovation to demonize Hinduism. In reality, India is the region where all skin color types met and mingled, and you will find many brahmins as black as Nelson Mandela. Ancient "Aryan" heroes like Rama, Krishna , Draupadi, Ravana (a brahmin) and a number of Vedic seers were explicitly described as being dark-skinned.

Finally, caste society has been the most stable society in history. Indian communists used to sneer that " India has never even had a revolution." Actually, that is no mean achievement.

(source: Why the Christian missionaries attack the institution of caste and in particular the brahmin caste? - By Koenraad Elst).

Refer to how Brahmin is sold in the West - Brahmin Handbags

Note: Refer to Post-Hindu India - By Kancha Ilaiah, in order to understand the grand designs being sponsored by these global players. 

 

Caste has given Indian society stability and protection from Foreign Invaders and today's corrupt Government.

Caste is our social capital. We don't have to become apologists.

***

Rajiv Malhotra (   ) Founder of The Infinity Foundation in Princeton, NJ has remarked on the ill prepared HAF report on caste thus:

"There are so many Hindu organizations working hard on the ground on this issue, that deserve recognition, but unfortunately, only the church related and leftist groups are given international recognition. Christians participate in world forums by putting themselves on a strong footing, presenting all the great work they claim to do. They never start on a weak footing with any kind of "apology" externally. Where is the Christian apology for the slaughter and rape perpetuated during the Inquisition in India and subsequent atrocities by its missionaries, or the Islamic apology for terrorism done in its name? Why must Hindus grovel just to gain standing in front of Western institutions?

Can we imagine an Islamic group, that claims to be champions of Islam, to spread a report that condemns Sharia Law as a human rights violation, and that gives 20 pages of graphic and sensational incidents of Sharia based violations?

The effects of this would be to support those who want Sharia Law outlawed by international bodies. Indeed, there are movements against Sharia Law, and a small number of liberal Muslims can be found among them. But these Muslims are not empowered and are on the fringes of legitimacy as spokespersons for Islam. They are not accepted as the voice of mainstream Islam.

"I cannot imagine a Christian or Muslim group taking their cases of abuse within their community to some foreign capital, and submitting it to foreign legal authorities to get them involved in dealing with it. "

Failure of Western Model

The western model of a society made of atomic individuals has led to the breakdown of families and communities. In such a model, the government social security is the only recourse for those who are handicapped, who fall on hard times, or are in old age. There is no local community support available very often. We know how this experiment has failed in the US where the social security system is virtually bankrupt. Is it ethical to export this failed model to India? In a poor country like India, the central government has even less chances of providing a safety net of social security to its vast population. Traditionally, the jati served as the safety net one turns to in times of distress. What would be the social security for Indians once devoid of closely knit communities that are held together by centuries of traditions and bonds? Already, in westernized cities such as Delhi, many elderly are being thrown out of their homes in this new era of western modernity that has arrived. There are "old age homes" now being built in Delhi for the first time. HAF better have a substitute in place, before dismantling the old structure too hastily.

Jati cohesion has also been a form of collective bargaining of rights, and even during Mughal and British times the rulers had to face their power of collective bargaining. Dissolving jati became a British strategy to get rid of local power that was in the hands of Indians. Today, when a jati structure gets eradicated, the vacuum left is often filled by church-run or madrassa-run collective identities. The church "congregation" and Islamic "umma" are the alternative "new jatis" waiting to take over. Thus, the role played by jatis for resisting against conversions must be understood. "

The "caste problem" today, is a problem of perverted secularism for politicians' self-interests. It is the result of modern democracy that encourages vote bank politics and fragmented parties, and this is why Arun Shourie has proposed a US style central presidential system."

The New Washington Politics on Hinduism

The recent mid-term elections has been a big boost for right-wing Christians joining the US Congress in large numbers starting in January, 2011. Obama is on the defensive and eager to make "deals" with them, sacrificing those items to their wishes that he does not consider critical to his own agenda. Hinduism has always been on the brink of US Congressional sanctions and US pressure that would amount to interference in India on the ground of "human rights."

The new buzz of excitement in these radical right-wing Christian circles is that this is the right time to introduce bills in the US Congress whose ultimate effect would be to pressure the Indian government on certain social policies. Demands will be made that could try to: (1) open the floodgates for massive faith-based funding from overseas, in the guise of human rights, far more openly than before; (2) enact laws or policies in India to curtail Hindu voices further; (3) require that US corporate activities and investments in India should give employment preference to certain "minorities" and "oppressed" peoples, and Christian groups have prepared their ground forces in India over several years to pounce on this opportunity and claim the lion's share of the benefits; and (4) start prosecuting caste-based "human rights violations" under international laws.

I fear that
HAF is acting under the pressure to either soften its stand in defending Hinduism, or face the music that could sideline it in these debates.

(source: Critique of Hindu American Foundation's Report on 'Caste' – By Rajiv Malhotra).  Refer to Breaking India: Western Inventions and Dalit Faultlines - By Rajiv Malhotra and Aravindan Neelakandan

Refer to Hindu American Foundation faces desertion on Caste Report - By Dr. Srinivasan Kalyanaraman and PIO Hindus: Gateway to White Imperialism – By Radha Rajan - vijayvaani.com

Gurcharan Das, the strategic consultant, writer and former vice-president and managing director of Proctor & Gamble Worldwide, says in his book, India Unbound

“In the nineteenth century, British colonialists used to blame our caste system for everything wrong in India. Now I have a different perspective. Instead of morally judging caste, I seek to understand its impact on competitiveness. I have come to believe that being endowed with commercial castes is a source of advantage in the global economy.”

(source: Caste as social capital: Why have the Gounders, Nadars, the Marwaris and Katchis done so well - By R Vaidyanathan - newsinsight.net).

Gerald Heard (?) American thinker and writer who has studied the Indian social system, has called it "organic democracy", and suggests in his work, Man the Master, that it is the type of democracy the world as a whole needs today. Heard defines "organic democracy" as "the rule of the people who have organized themselves in a living and not a mechanical relationship; where instead of all men being said to be equal, which is a lie, all men are known to be of equal value, could we but find the position in which their potential contribution could be released and their essential growth so pursued." He calls the four varnas by the names "seers" (Brahmins), "politicians (Kshatriyas), "technicians" (vaishyas) and "coherers" (Shudras). "These four classes are distinguished by unmistakable psychological characteristics which suit them to their particular purpose, function and place."  It is this organization that made Indian society stable, efficient and strong. It produced in India great scholars, warriors, administrators, and producers of wealth.

(source: Man, the Master - By Gerald Heard  p. 129).

Rajeev Srinivasan columnist has wisely noted that:

"It has become a conditioned, Pavlovian reflex for Indians to condemn the entire idea of caste unthinkingly. It has become a cliché to rail against caste, but jati and varnam are just a codification of the fact that all humans are not born equal in their endowments: Some are tall, some are fat, some are musically talented, and so on. We cannot escape the ruthless Bell Curve. 

The very term 'caste' is not proper, because it is a European Christian distortion of the ideas of jati and varnam, which the colonialists condemned out of ignorance and prejudice." What is deplorable is not caste per se, but casteism, or discrimination based on caste. This is similar to the rightly abhorred discrimination based on other inescapable biological facts: Race, gender, or age. Casteism must be condemned in the strongest possible terms, but that does not mean caste has to be thrown out, baby with bath-water. 

Allegedly egalitarian Communist states, too, have their elites: Rulers' offspring get the plum jobs. Not too many children of Polit Bureau members toil in the gulags of China , or have their organs harvested on demand. In Muslim societies, too, there are obvious hierarchies: Women are defined to be inferior. Among men, Arabs are top of the heap; among Arabs, Prophet Mohammed's tribe is superior. In that tribe, Mohammed's family members are more privileged. The rigidity of caste as we know it is yet another 'contribution' - as are very many of modern India 's ills, such as dowry - of Christian European imperialists. They capriciously decided that the Manusmrti was the rulebook of Indian society, and used their census to arbitrarily assign jatis to varnams. The objective of the imperialists was simple: To divide and rule. Today, their lineal descendants, the Communists, have latched on to the same idea as a way of subverting India .  

The truth of the matter is that jati is an entirely satisfactory construct for most members of a particular jati, so long as there is no overt discrimination against them. It is not as though people are just dying to get into a 'higher' jati. They are content with their existing in-group, even if they belong to a relatively 'low' jati. It is belonging that matters. Finally, caste makes Indian society robust.  

It is a system theory axiom that a centralised, monolithic system is vulnerable to a single-point failure. But a distributed system, which has many smaller, independent, nodes, is far more difficult to destroy. Castes have functioned as these distributed nodes, and thus no attacker could overthrow the system. Caste, in a fundamental way, has been a reason for the longevity of Indian civilisation. Surely, the distortions in this perfectly sensible construct need to be removed, but it is not per se inappropriate.

(source: Nothing wrong with caste: Birth and berth - By Rajeev Srinivasan - dailypioneer.com - Agenda Special section).

The caste system has been the most misunderstood, the most vilified subject of Hindu society at the hands of Western scholars and even today by "secular" Indians. The Hindu caste system has often been described as " the most cruel apartheid, imposed by the barbaric white Aryan invaders on the gentle dark-skinned natives."

(Refer to Aryan Invasion Theory Chapter).

The earliest reference to the four classes is in the Purusa Sukta of the Rig Veda, where they are described as having sprung from the body of the creative spirit, from his head, arms, thighs, and feet. This indicates that just as in a human body, the different organs perform different functions so also in human society different people must perform different functions, according to their predominant traits or temperament.

(source: Hinduism: The Eternal Religion - By M. D. Chaturvedi p. 200-201).

'This poetical image is intended to convey the organic character of society.

Man is not only only himself, but is in solidarity with all of his kind. Man is not an abstract individual. He belongs to a certain social group by virtue of his character, behavior, and function in the community. The four-fold classification is conceived in the interests of world progress. 

(source: Eastern Religions and Western Thought - By S. Radhakrishnan  p. 355-357).


If Caste is destroyed - it will destroy Hinduism

Destruction of Hinduism will mean destruction of India

***

Sir Sidney Low (1857-1932) in his book, A Vision of India: with a frontispiece says: 

“There is no doubt that it (caste) is the main cause of the fundamental stability and contentment by which Indian society has been braced for centuries against the shocks of politics and the cataclysms of Nature. It provides every man with his place, his career, his occupations, his circle of friends. It makes him, at the outset, a member of a corporate body; it protects him through life from the canker of social jealousy and unfulfilled aspirations; it ensures him companionship and a sense of community with others in like case with himself. The caste organization is to the Hindu his club, his trade union, his benefit society, his philanthropic society. There are no work houses in India, and none are as yet needed. The obligation to provide for kinsfolk and friends in distress is universally acknowledged; nor can it be questioned that this is due to the recognition of the strength of family ties and of the bonds created by associations and common pursuits which is fostered by the caste principle. An India without caste, as things stand at present, it is not quite easy to imagine.”

(source: Hindu Superiority - Har Bilas Sarda p. 32-33).  

William Robinson, author of By Temple Shrine and Lotus Pool, wrote on p. 66 of his book: 

"The fortress of caste cannot be taken by external assault. Its wall will only crumble when the garrison within ceases to repair them. The only real discipline that India has maintained is the discipline of caste. If you really could create genuine democracy in India it would destroy caste. If it destroyed caste it would destroy Hinduism and if it destroyed Hinduism it would destroy India , at least the India that has existed for so many thousand of years… Far, far better that they remain good Hindus than become rampant atheists!"

(source: The Raj Syndrome: A Study in Imperial Perceptions  - By Suhash Chakravarty  p. 233).

Nirad C. Chaudhari, (1897-1999) prominent Indian author and scholar, who rejected Western culture in an independent India, has defended the caste system on the grounds that the successive waves of migrant tribes or invaders probably made a class society inevitable in India, and that caste still has a useful function:

"The Caste system has only organized the disparities created by historical forces and movements. By doing so, it has done great good by reducing the competition of the diversities, by freezing them within certain limits, and by making each not only legitimate but even moral.....It canalized competitions and helped the coexistence of elements which otherwise would have been at war. It was a social system specially suited to a country like India, which history has made into a warehouse of civilizations, and a couloir and cul-de-sac of diverse people and cultures." He emphasized that if he considered the caste system in any danger - which he does not - he would add, "Please do not pulverize a society which has no other force of cohesion, into amorphous dust."

(source: The Continent of Circe - By Nirad C. Chaudhari  New York: Oxford University Press, 1965  p. 60).

Alain Danielou (1907-1994) author of several books, including History of India and Virtue, Success, Pleasure, & Liberation : The Four Aims of Life in the Tradition of Ancient India. writes: 

"It is easy to see that despite all the national and linguistic barriers, even modern Western society is fundamentally, like all societies, a caste system. The problem of Western society derive from the fact that while proclaiming the equality of men, it is entirely graded on a hierarchical system as far as the professions are concerned. Under the pretext of equality, Western lawmakers do not let the various groups cooperate among themselves while keeping their different habits, ethics, and social life. Jews, Mormons, Muslims, Celts, Basques, Albigemsoams, Pygmies, Blacks or Inuits are accorded a relative equality only on condition that they conform to our customs, losing most of their social, national, and religious characteristics and in fact abandoning their own personality." 

Hindu Society is 'caste-ridden' while modern democratic society reveals the presence of 'classes', sociologist explain. They acclaim 'class' and condemn 'caste'. Caste, according to them, has its roots in Hindu (Brahmannical) religion, while 'class' has its roots in economic disparities. 

(source: Virtue, Success, Pleasure, & Liberation : The Four Aims of Life in the Tradition of Ancient India - by Alain Danielou  p. 33 - 35).

Caste system provided for positive Social Networking and support

vs

The Total Alienation of Young people in the West

***

Mark Tully ( ? ) was the BBC correspondent in New Delhi and author of several books including No Full Stops in India and The Heart of India

He points out: 

"The alienation of many young people in the West and the loneliness of the old show the suffering that egalitarianism inflicts on those who do not win, the superficiality of an egalitarianism which in effect means equal opportunities for all to win and then ignores the inevitable losers. For all that, the elite of India have become so spellbound by egalitarianism that they are unable to see any good in the only institution which does provide a sense of identity and dignity to those who are robbed from birth of the opportunity to compete on an equal footing – CASTE. Caste is obnoxious to the egalitarian West, so it is obnoxious to the Indian elite too.

"The very fact that the institution of caste has survived about 3,000 years is a clear proof of the services which it must have rendered to the Hindu society in different periods of history. It is the caste system that has been largely responsible for the preservation of Hindu religion and culture. The caste brotherhoods, on account of their policy of exclusiveness, did not mix with the foreigners. So the Greeks, Huns or Muslims could not conquer Hindu culture. On the contrary, most of these foreigners were themselves absorbed into the Hindu fold."

(source: No Full Stops in India - By Mark Tully).

"The caste system is based on the sound economic principle of division of labor which ensures efficiency of production. A person from his birth knew what profession he was to follow later on. So from the start, he devoted all his energy to the one profession of his forefathers. It was because of this reason that in every period of Indian history, there was no dearth of highly-skilled workers and scholars. Megasthenes, Hieun Tsang, Alberuni, Ibn Batuta, Babar and even the early Britishers were impressed by the talents and artistic skill of the Indians in every art and craft." 

(source: Ancient India - By V. D. Mahajan p. 166).

Note: Mark Tully has spoken in defense of the caste system and denounced the spread of consumerism in the subcontinent. The BBC pushed him out because of his excessive identification with Indian culture. 

(source: India Inscribed: European and British Writing on India 1600-1800 - By Kate Teltscher introduction page).

Michael Pym wrote : "Caste is the secret of that amazing stability which is characteristic of the Indian social structure. It is the strength of Hinduism. Naturally, it can be abused. The moment a Brahmin treats a sweeper cruelly because he is a sweeper, he departs from his Brahminhood. He becomes a usurper and a social danger. And in due course, he will have to pay for this mistake. Because men are imperfect, and because power is a deadly intoxicant, such abuses may and do occur, but they are not inherent in the institution – they are contrary to its principles, though they may be inherent in the make up of the individual. 

Caste in itself is also a protection for the individual, because it permits group action. The reason why a Hindu dreads being outcaste is analogous to the reason why, in England say, a worker would dread being thrown out of his trade union.

(source: The Power of India - By Michael Pym p. 152- 153).

While Marxists and other anti-Hindu intellectuals calling themselves Secularists never miss an opportunity to denounce it, the fact of the matter is that the Indian civilization survived nearly a thousand year onslaught of Islam. Several other ancient civilizations – like those of Iran (Zorastrian), the Byzantine Empire (Christian) and Central Asia (Buddhist) broke down under the same force over a much shortest period. This shows that they must have lacked a social order capable of protecting their societies. 

The so called ‘egalitarian’ Buddhist society lacked the social organization which enabled the Hindu society to survive. It was the same story in Egypt, Syria, and Turkey which were part of the Christian Byzamtine Empire. They lacked the strength and resilience of the Hindu society and succumbed to the Islamic invasion. 

(source: A Hindu View of the World - By N. S. Rajaram   p. 103 - 104).

Dr. Koenraad Elst (1959 -) Dutch historian, born in Leuven, Belgium, on 7 August 1959, into a Flemish (i.e. Dutch-speaking Belgian) Catholic family. He graduated in Philosophy, Chinese Studies and Indo-Iranian Studies at the Catholic University of Leuven. He is the author of several books including The Saffron Swastika, Decolonising The Hindu Mind - Ideological Development of Hindu Revivalism and Negationism in India: Concealilng the Record of Islam

"The caste system is often portrayed as the ultimate horror. Inborn inequality is indeed unacceptable to us moderns, but this does not preclude that the system has also had its merits.

Caste is perceived as an "exclusion-from," but first of all it is a form of "belonging-to," a natural structure of solidarity. For this reason, Christian and Muslim missionaries found it very difficult to lure Hindus away from their communities.

Sometimes castes were collectively converted to Islam, and Pope Gregory XV (1621-23) decreed that the missionaries could tolerate caste distinction among Christian converts; but by and large, caste remained an effective hurdle to the destruction of Hinduism through conversion. That is why the missionaries started attacking the institution of caste and in particular the Brahmin caste. This propaganda has bloomed into a full-fledged anti-brahminism, the Indian equivalent of anti-Semitism."

(source: Caste -  By Prof Koenraad Elst - hinduismtoday.com).

T M P Mahadevan wrote about the castes:

"The origin of caste is lost in obscurity. It purpose however, seems to have been the same as that of Plato’s division of the State into three classes, castes, or professions, viz. philosophers-rulers, warriors and masses. (see Plato’s Republic) The underlying principle is division of labor. Originally the castes were professional and subsequently became hereditary. The Brahmins were custodians of the spiritual culture of the race. He was friend, philosopher, guide to humanity. The Kshatriya is the guardian of society, its protector and preserver. The Vaisya is the expert in economics. His was the duty of arranging for the production and distribution of wealth. The Sudra was the worker or manual laborer. By his manual labor he places the entire community under a debt of gratitude.  The system was evolved to keep the social fabric in a harmonious condition; but in later years it became a divisive force. The original designers built the edifice of caste on the secure foundations of obligations; the lesser men who came after them produced a caricature on the shifting sands of rights… 

The four classes were not meant to be warring communities but complementary classes. Mahatma Gandhi said: “It is a law of spiritual economics” “It has nothing to do with superiority or inferiority”. And as the system of caste is purely a social adjustment, there is nothing that can stand in the way of its revision and readjustment except a sense of pride and obstinacy and a demand to preserve the status quo on the part of some of its members."

(source: Outlines of Hinduism - By T M P Mahadevan ISBN 0836457862 p. 69-74).  

When Julius Caesar occupied the Celtic West of Europe, he found that the Druid class was the backbone of this society (the parallel with the Brahmins in the perception of the missionaries is quite exact): therefore, he persecuted the Druids.  

(source: Ayodhya and After: Issues Before Hindu Society - By Koenraad Elst  p. 100).

Huston Smith (1919 -  ) born in China to Methodist missionaries, a philosopher, most eloquent writer, world-famous religion scholar who practices Hatha Yoga. He has written various books, The World's Religions.  He says:

Men and women that are lining the bathing ghats are all Hindus, but how different they are. But India looked past their bodies into their minds where she found the prolific ness of the infinite exploding like a Roman cantle. 

No other civilization saw, appreciated, and classified so precisely the full spectrum of human personality types…an achievement that has earned for India – the title of the world’s introspective psychologist.

"India identified four such types and once again honored all of them. Likening society to an organism, she pictured Brahmins -  its head, Brahmins are intellectuals, their chief delight in art, ideas, and things of spirit generally. 

Next come the arms and shoulder of society – its administrative  - persons who are talent for getting things done  

Next  personality type – the artisan or craftsmen – the engineer and the farmer – India likens these people to society’s stomach – for they produce and feed us the things on which life depends. 

Finally, manual labor is important too. They are the legs and feet without which society could not run.”

(source: The Mystic's Journey - India and the Infinite: The Soul of a People – By Huston Smith).

The Ploy of Western Propaganda

Linking Caste to Hindu Scriptures and de-linking Racism from the Bible

***

Dr. Koenraad Elst has written:

"Increasingly, Hinduism is identified by the international public with the caste system and nothing but the caste system. The caste system, in turn, is painted in the ugliest colors: as a racist Apartheid system designed to oppress the native population. These notions are eagerly welcomed and amplified by outside forces such as Christian missionary centers, followed by their Islamic counterparts. Till recently, American foreign policy agencies made no secret of their designs on India's unity. When she was US ambassador to the UN, Mrs. Jean Kirkpatrick once said that "the break-up of India is one of the goals of the American foreign policy." Patrick Moynihan, who had held the same job, said more recently, "After the break-up of the Soviet Union, the artificial state India is also bound to break up."

(source: Indigenous Indians: Agastya to Ambedkar - By Koenraad Elst  Voice of India ASIN 8185990042 p. 59-60). For more refer to chapter on Islamic Onslaught and European Imperialism 

Ronald B Inden author has pointed out:

"Caste, the Western scholars held, is the type of society characteristic of India, the institution that distinguishes it from the other civilization dominated by caste from the West. The representation of India as a civilization dominated by caste are legion. Caste, considered the essence of Indian civilization, has often been treated as though it were the unchanging agent of the civilization, from the rise of the Indus Valley culture and the arrival of the Aryans down to the present day of regionalism and caste in electoral politics. It is, thus, deeply embedded in Indological discourse. Many of the more recent accounts of caste have dropped the racialist discourse, but they have not broken with the notion that caste is a unique type of society, one that displaces the economically oriented politics of the West. Accounts of caste can and have been used as a foil to build up the West’s image of itself."

(source: Imagining India - By Ronald B Inden  p. 82-83).  Refer to how Brahmin is sold in the West - Brahmin Handbags

"It would lead to a greater respect for India’s culture, and indeed a better understanding of it, if it were recognized that the caste system has never been totally static, that it is adapting itself to today’s changing circumstances and that it has positive as well as negative aspects. The caste system provides security and a community for millions of Indians. It gives them an identity that neither Western Science nor Western thought has yet provided, because caste is not just a matter of being a Brahmin or a Harijan: it is also a kinship system. The system provides a wider support group than a family: a group which has a social life in which all its members participate." 

Dr. K. M. Munshi  (1887 - 1971)  A freedom fighter, Committee of the Indian National Congress. He founded Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan in 1938 with the blessings of Mahatma Gandhi. He ceaselessly strove for cultural and spiritual regeneration. He has drawn our attention to the harm several European scholars have intentionally done to Hindu culture: He laments how the failures of Hindus have been highlighted and how their successes have been consistently ignored:

“It (history) does not give us the real India. … During our school or college career, generation after generation were told about the successive foreign invasions of the country, but little about how we resisted them and less about our victories. We were taught to decry the Hindu social systems; but we have never been told how this system came into existence as a synthesis of political, social, economic and cultural forces; and how it developed in the people the tenacity to survive catastrophic changes.”

(source:  History of Ancient India: Distorted and Mutilated).

Jakob De Roover  is at the Research Centre Vergelijkende Cultuurwetenschap, Ghent University, Belgium. He has observed that:

"When European scholars describe India , they tend to connect all ills and atrocities in that society to the nature of Indian culture. One links widow-burning, dowry murder, domestic violence, female infanticide and caste discrimination to ‘Hindu’ foundations. Europe also loves to celebrate Indian authors whose specialty is revealing the ‘dark underbelly’ of Indian society. 

In contrast, social ills and atrocities in European societies are characterised as aberrations: racism, colonial genocide, the two World Wars, the Holocaust, sexual abuse, etc. are considered as acts that deviate from the true temper of European culture. This stance of cultural asymmetry has become the hidden premise of the European study of India."

(source: How Free Are We? -  By Jakob De Roover). Refer to Poverty in America: Census: US poverty rate rises to 15.1 per cent; number of uninsured hits high of 49.9 million

Refer to Why Nothing has Changed for Victims of Church Torture, or for the Victimizers - By Rev. Kevin D. Annett - Hidden From History: The Canadian HolocaustWatch Film Trailer to Kevin's award-winning documentary film Unrepentant - youtube.com.

In the September 1989 issue of Seminar magazine, Madhu Kishwar, one of India leading feminists, wrote, 

"The caste system provides for relatively greater stability and dignity to the individuals than they would have as atomized individuals. This is part explains why the Indian poor retain a strong sense of self-respect. It is that self-respect which the thought-less insistence on egalitarianism destroys." 

(source: No Full Stops in India - By Mark Tully p. 4-8).

Caste system is often perceived to be an integral part of Hindu religion. This erroneous perception arises when people mix the ancient social tradition (caste system) with Hindu religious philosophy. 

According to V. A. Smith, most of the misunderstanding on the subject of caste system has arisen from the persistent mistranslation of Manu's term "Varna" as caste, whereas it should be rendered class or order or by some equivalent term. 

(source: Oxford History of India - By V. A. Smith Oxford Date of Publication: 1958). 

The Genius of India

Guy Sorman (1944 -  ) visiting scholar at Hoover Institution at Stanford and the leader of new liberalism in France, states:

"Westerners tend to be perplexed and scandalized by the caste system but they forget that the aristocracy which ruled over Europe for a thousand years was a caste of sorts. The guilds of the Ancient Regime resembled Indian castes as they had existed initially, each caste corresponding to a particular trade." When it comes to marriage, in Europe as in India, one looks for a partner from among one's immediate social circle. 

Till the Age of Enlightenment, castes were viewed with interest rather than revulsion. Some French travelers even felt that the caste system had a certain social utility. In 1777, when Desvaulx (1745 - 1825) wrote in his book:

"Indians are as attached to their caste as our gentlemen to theirs." 

(source: Les indes florissantes - Robert Laffont 1991). 

Sorman further said: "The authority of the caste is a check on the possible abuse of their power by the princes." There has never been a central authority capable of imposing a single language, religion or way of life on the myriad castes that constitute India. 

It is for this very reason that in the past the Muslim and British conquerors and prozelytisers have had to curtail their ambitions. 

"India, is the only great civilization not to have been devoured by the West."
says Guy Sorman. 

Caste system has also made Indians completely immune to the totalitarian temptations. Overturning Western prejudice, Guy Sorman sees in the caste system and polytheism not a curse but the stuff that forearms Indians against absolutism. It is perhaps thanks to castes, however archaic and oppressive they may be, that India, unlike China, has escaped from totalitarianism and the grip of a single state or a single party. It may be said that the endurance of the Brahmins in India has kept her elite intact, whereas in neighboring China the anti-intellectualism of communist peasants has completely wiped out the intelligentsia of that country. It was the Brahmins who, at the time of British colonization, introduced in India the first notions of public health and modern techniques in agriculture and industry. 

Though caste as an ideology is unique to India, the caste spirit, both as a metaphor and social reality, seems widespread. It is the caste system which holds Indians together and has allowed eternal India to endure. Its religious bases was attacked by Islam and Christianity and since the 19th century both Indian and European reformers have not stopped harping on the social ills of the caste system. But nothing, neither socialism nor nationalism nor republican egalitarianism nor any other doctrine of Western origin, has managed to replace it. 

(source: The Genius of India - By Guy Sorman  ('Le Genie de l'Inde') Macmillan India Ltd. 2001. ISBN 0333 93600 0 p. xiii - 56-58).

An Englishman getting a pedicure from his Indian servants.

No Ten Commandments in the East of the Suez Canal?

The Tyranny of British Rule: "The British have set themselves up as the master race in India. British rule in India is fascism, there is no dodging that." 

"It is in India, of all places on the earth, that the superiority of the white over the colored races is most strikingly demonstrated." 

Refer to the chapter on European Imperialism. Watch An Invasion through Conversion - videoyahoo.com

Refer to  British aristocracy ‘ate human flesh’ - indianrealist.wordpress.com and Think tank alleges British MPs involved in promoting evangelism in India - hinduvoice.co.uk. Refer to The  Genocidal war being waged against Iraq and its people by the Anglo-American imperialists - Iraq Body Count. Refer to Hidden from History: The Canadian Holocaust - By Kevin Annett and documentary Unrepentant and Canada's Genocide. Refer to Campus murders of Indian students in US cause for concern. Refer to Hindus want public apology from Pope

Refer to Loot: in search of the East India Company - By Nick Robins and How India became poor - indiarealist.com

Watch Why we fight (2005) documentary - Imperial and technological arrogance of world's Super power: describes the rise and maintenance of the United States military-industrial complex and its involvement in the wars led by the United States during the last fifty years, and in particular in the 2003 Invasion of Iraq. The film alleges that in every decade since World War II, the American public has been told a lie to bring it into war to fuel the military-economic machine, which in turn maintains American dominance in the world.

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Why The British Hated the Brahmins

According to columnist, Meenakshi Jain

"The British were not wrong in their distrust of educated Brahmins in whom they saw a potential threat to their supremacy in India. For instance, in 1879 the Collector of Tanjore in a communication to Sir James Caird, member of the Famine Commission, stated that "there was no class (except Brahmins ) which was so hostile to the English." The predominance of the Brahmins in the freedom movement confirmed the worst British suspicions of the community. Innumerable CID reports of the period commented on Brahmin participation at all levels of the nationalist movement. In the words of an observer, 

"If any community could claim credit for driving the British out of the country, it was the Brahmin community. Seventy per cent of those who were felled by British bullets were Brahmins".

To counter what they perceived, a Brahmanical challenge, the British launched on the one hand a major ideological attack on the Brahmins and, on the other incited non-Brahmin caste Hindus to press for preferential treatment, a ploy that was to prove equally successful vis-à-vis the Muslims.

In the attempt to rewrite Indian history, Brahmins began to be portrayed as oppressors and tyrants who willfully kept down the rest of the populace. Their role in the development of Indian society was deliberately slighted. In ancient times, for example, Brahmins played a major part in the spread of new methods of cultivation (especially the use of the plough and manure) in backward and aboriginal areas. The Krsi-parasara, compiled during this period, is testimony to their contribution in this field. Apart from misrepresenting the Indian past, the British actively encouraged anti-Brahmin sentiments. 

Apart from misrepresenting the Indian past, the British actively encouraged anti-Brahmin sentiments.  

A number of scholars have commented on their involvement in the anti-Brahmin movement in South India. As a result of their machinations non-Brahmins turned on the Brahmins with a ferocity that has few parallels in Indian history. This was all the more surprising in that for centuries Brahmins and non-Brahmins had been active partners and collaborators in the task of political and social management. 

(source: The Plight of Brahmins - By Meenakshi Jain The Indian Express, Tuesday, September 18, 1990). 

Refer to The Indian Jews - By Jakob De Roover - Outlookindia.com June 20, 2008. 

Author S. Balagangadhara writes: 

"The Brahmins were identified as the ‘clergy’ or the priests of Hinduism. An explicit hostility towards the heathen priesthood was not helped by the inability of the messengers of God’s word to convert Brahmins to Christianity. In Brahmins, they came across a literate group, which was able to read, write, do arithmetic, conduct ‘theological’ discussions, etc. During the first hundred years or so, this group was the only source of information about India as far as the missionaries were concerned. Schooled to perform many administrative tasks, the Brahmins were mostly the only ones well-versed in the European languages – enough to communicate with the Europeans. In short, they appeared both to be the intellectual group and the most influential social layer in the Indian social organization. Conversion of the heathens of India, as the missions painfully discovered, did not depend so much on winning the allegiance of the prince or the king as it did on converting the Brahmins.   

This attack was born out of the inability of Christianity to gain a serious foothold in the Indian society. The ‘red race’ was primitive – it could be decimated; the ‘blacks’ were backward – they could be enslaved; the ‘yellow’ and the ‘brown’ were inferior – they could be colonized. But how to convert them? One would persecute resistance and opposition. How to respond to indifference? The attitude of these heathens towards Christianity, it is this: indifference.  "

(source: The Heathen in His Blindness...: Asia, the West and the Dynamic of Religion - By S. Balagangadhara p.  82 -149). For more refer to chapter on First Indologists and European Imperialism).

Sesha Samarajiwa ( ? ) from Sri Lanka is interested examining foreign religious agents’ role as Fifth Columnists of neocolonialism/neoimperialism. He has written:

"Evangelists belong to a long line of pests from the West who have come and keep coming like locusts to colonize our souls and cannibalize our cultures.

The latest incursions are merely a continuation of the 500-year-old sorry saga of Asia, Africa and South America , which began with the arrival of the Portuguese and the Spaniards. Some have never recovered from the machinations of their priests and the savagery of their conquistadors. The baton of imperialism has passed from the Europeans to the Americans. That is not to say that the rest of the West has dropped out. They have not. They are very much in the game. It’s just that the Americans are in the lead, the new Romans on the rampage. 

We know well how the Europeans won the West. They won it through mass genocide of the native populations in North and South America . In South America , hundreds and thousands of natives who resisted conversion were garroted. There is a poignant painting depicting such conversions. It shows armored Spanish soldiers garroting native priests, while a Spanish priest holds up a large cross. More terrified natives await their turn. On the side, another Spanish priest feeds stacks of ancient gold-leaf books of the Mayans into a fire. On the face of the Mayan priests, a look of utter sadness mixed with resignation.

In places like India and Sri Lanka , they were no better. They too faced abject horrors. In his book, Christianity's scramble for India , Navaratna Rajaram says that “the Christian Missionary is neither a Christian nor a missionary. In fact, he is a racist and a white supremacist in priestly guise.” Their Buffalo Bills and their Wild Bills, their Custers and their Cortezes, and the long line of predators and priests made sure that the sorry remainder of once-proud nations would remain so, while they ruled the roost in lands drenched with native blood. Many weaker cultures succumbed to the relentless onslaught from the West. They either slaughtered those who resisted or they sowed the seeds of abjection and their eventual self-destruction. Even today, we see the pathetic dregs of once-noble nations staggering around native reservations and barrios in North and South America, in Australia , in Canada , in New Zealand . They have lost their spirit. They have lost their will to live. They seem embarrassed to be alive. They are self-destructing. At best, they are performing monkeys titillating whites with a thirst for the exotic. These are abject peoples, vanishing tribes. Now, not satisfied with ruling their large chunk of raided real estate, they are hell-bent on extending their hegemony over the whole world. They howl in protest when the natives resist. Human misery is happy hunting grounds for these spiritual cartels. They strike when their targets are at their weakest or bomb them to submission to make sure they are at their weakest. Thus softened up, they are susceptible to inducements and brainwashing. They are canny. To ‘convert’ people, you must first make them despise and reject what had sustained their people for millennia. So they vilify their faith or convince them it is a spent force or dark superstition. In so doing, they make us spit on our heritage."

(source: Beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing - By Sesha Samarajiwa - Asian Tribune October 9, 2007).

According to Shyam Sashtri, the words, Brahmins, Kshatryas, Vaisyas and Sudras were names of classes rather than castes during the pre-historic period. According to H. G. Rawlinson, caste is a  Portuguese word meaning purity of race. 

But ultimately if one wants to understand the truth, the original purpose behind the caste system, one must go to antiquity to study the evolution of the caste system. When the Vedas refer to the four-fold division of society, they use the Sanskrit word varna meaning "class," not the word jati meaning "caste". The word varna was mistakenly translated by the Portuguese during their period of colonial establishment in India. Four orders of society were recognized based upon the four main goals of human beings and established society accordingly. These four orders of society were called "varna", which has two meanings; first it means "color" and second it means a "veil". As color it does NOT refer to the color of the skin of people, but to the qualities (gunas) or energies of human nature. It is true that the Caste system did degenerate with passage of time.

This mix-up is quite significant because the Varna system of the Vedas was designed to achieve division of labor and help society operate efficiently. 

Dagmar Grafin Bernstorff, (author of 'Das Kastensystem im Wandel' Indien in Deutschland 1990 p 29-51) based on convincing evidence, suggests that varna originally did not refer to skin color but designed the four directions identified by white, black, red, yellow according to which the participants were arranged during the Vedic yajna.

(source: A Survey of Hinduism - By Klaus K. Klostermaier p. 334).

Alain Danielou writes: " The Hindu lawgivers felt that no advanced society could exist without the recognition of certain facts, such as professional organizations; relations between the various occupations needed to maintain the economic, political, and social stability of the state; and the problems arising from the various degrees of development among peoples and individuals, their various aptitudes, and the drawbacks of intermarriage. It should not be forgotten that the so-called equality in aptitude of the sundry human races takes only the capacities of the most aggressive races into account, and not of those that are unable to adapt to modern conditions, such as the Pygmies, the Australian aborigines, the Munda populations of India, and many other groups. Their systematic genocide still continues today, since their existence upsets all ideas of so-called equality of aptitude, values, and aspirations among the various races. For the Hindus, the caste system is not a man-made invention to justify slavery but the recognition of the Creator's will, the codification of a state of fact, an attempt to harmonize human society in accordance with the general scheme of creation." 

He predicts:

"Far from guiding the world toward an ideal future for human society, democratic ideas are probably no more than a brief period of romantic politics, which will lead the world into great turmoil. The social and political ideologies of the modern West will probably appear as childish and absurd to our descendants as they seem irresponsible and incoherent to traditionalist Hindus today."

(source: Virtue, Success, Pleasure, & Liberation : The Four Aims of Life in the Tradition of Ancient India - by Alain Danielou - p. 33 - 43).

Sri Aurobindo (1872-1950) most original philosopher of modern India.  He wrote: 

"Caste was originally an arrangement for the distribution of functions in society, just as much as class in Europe, but the principle on which this distribution was based was peculiar to India. A Brahmin was a Brahmin not by mere birth, but because he discharged the duty of preserving the spiritual and intellectual elevation of the race, and he had to cultivate the spiritual temperament and acquire the spiritual training which alone would qualify him for the task. The Kshatryia was Kshatryia not merely because he was the son of warriors and princes, but because he discharged the duty of protecting the country and preserving the high courage and manhood of action, and he had to cultivate the princely temperament and acquire the strong and lofty Samurai training which alone fitted him for his duties. So it was for the Vaishya whose function was to amass wealth for the race and the Shudra who discharged the humbler duties of service without which the other castes could not perform their share of labor for the common, good". 

(source: India's Rebirth - By Sri Aurobindo Publisher: Mira Aditi (ISBN 2-902776-32-2  p 26). 

Many Indian sages have even gone even further than Sri Aurobindo, arguing that in the occult relation India had with the Universal Force, each one was born in the caste CORRESPONDING to his or her spiritual evolution. There are accidents, misfits, errors, they say, but the system seems to have worked pretty well until modern times when it got perverted by the vagaries of materialism and western influence. 

Varna vyavastha means a social organization based on free choice of vocations in accordance with one’s vocational aptitudes determined by heredity and vocational training. Its purposed is not to divide people into castes or classes, as it is generally supposed to be, but to integrate the society into a whole by giving each type of individual a suitable vocational place in it. It aims at efficiency, satisfaction, and co-operation. Modern society in the West is in a chaotic condition. There is a great struggle for existence, power and wealth and superiority. All people seek for one and the same thing, wealth, and power. The ancient Indians who planned society on the basis of varna understood human nature better and planned a pattern of society in which there would be less chaos, less struggle and less dissatisfaction. They found out that all people fall naturally, into four types. Each of pleasures, and distinctive ways of living and dressing etc. 

(source: Indian Culture - Its Spiritual, Moral and Social Aspects - By Suniti Kumar Chatterji, Bhikhan Lal Atreya and Alain Danielou p. 30-31).

According to Sir S. Radhakrishnan (1888-1975) was one of the most profound philosophers of this century:

"Caste divisions are based on individual temperament, (Sattvadguji brahmanah syat ksatriyastu rajodhikah tamodhiko bhaved vaisyo gunasamyattu sudrata.)which is not immutable. In the beginning there was only one caste. We were all Brahmins (Brhadaranyaka Upanishad I. 4. 11-5; Many I. 31. Cp. Also Mahabharata, XII. 188: na visesosti varnanam sarvam Brahman idam jagat brahmana purvasrstam hi karmabhir varnatam gatam.) or all Sudras. A smriti text says that one is born a Sudra, and through purification he becomes a Brahmin. (Janmana jayate sudrah samskarair dvija ucyate.) 

Brahminhood in not an order, but a temperament. Anyone can have it, though many born in the Brahmin caste may be without it. It is independent of sex or calling, birth or breeding. Everyone has a right to Brahminhood, the state where inward grace and outward beauty fuse.  

People were divided into different castes according to social needs and individual action. The Brahmins are the priests. They should have neither property nor executive power. They are the seers and conscience of the society. The Kshatriyas are the administrators, whose principle is reverence for all life. The Vaishyas are the traders and craftsmen, men of technical ability who aim at efficiency. The Sudras are the routine workers, the proletariat, who carry out instructions and contribute only a fraction. The caste scheme is meant to apply to all mankind. In the Mahabharata we are told that the Yavanas (Greeks), the Kiratas, the Daradas (Dards), the Chinas (the Chinese), the Sakas (Scythians), the Pahlavas (Parthians) and several other non-Hindu peoples, belonged to one or the other of the four classes. The foreign tribes were absorbed into the Hindu society. The sort of social adjustment, by which foreigners were admitted into the Hindu fold, has taken place from very early times. The great empire-builders, the Nandas, the Mauryas and the Guptas, were according to low-born.  

In special cases individuals and groups changed their social class. Visvamitra, Ajamidha and Puramidha were admitted to the status of the Brahmin class, and even composed Vedic hymns. Yaska, in his Nirukta, tells us that of two brothers, Santanu and Devapi, one becomes a Ksatriya king and the other a Brahmin priest. Kavasa, the son of the slave girl Ilusa, was ordained as a Brahmin priest. Janaka, a ksatriya by birth, attained the rank of a Brahmin by virtue of his ripe wisdom and saintly character. The Bhagavata tells of the elevation of the ksatriya clan named Dhastru to brahminhood. Even a Sudra, if you do good, you become a Brahmin. (ebhistu karmabhir devi subhair acaritais tatha sudro brahmanatam yati, vaisyah ksatriyatam vrajet.) 

We are Brahmin not on account of birth or the performance of rites, not by study or family, but on account of our behavior. (na yonir napisamskaro nasrutam na ca santatih karanani dvijatvasya vrttam eva tu karanam.) ( sarvoyam brahmano loke vrttenaca vidhiyate vrttisthitasu sudropi brahmanatva, mouaccjato – Anusasanaparva.  

Even if we are born Sudras. By good conduct we can raise ourselves to the highest status. (sudrayonau hi jatasya sadgunan upastisthatah vaisyatvam labhate brahmam ksatriyattvam tathaiva ca arjave vartamanasya brahmanyam abhijayate – Aranyaparva. ) 

Sage Patanjali refers to Brahmin kings, and Manu to Sudra rulers. There were Brahmin soldiers in the time of Alexander, as there are today. Shankara held the view that members of all castes can read the sastras. Hindu acaryas denounced the spirit of caste separatism. Vajrasucikopanisad holds that many who were born of non-brahmin women had risen to the rank of Brahmin saints.

wpe79.jpg (11533 bytes)Even The Hindu Mahasabha resolved: “Whereas the caste system based on birth as at present existing is manifestly contrary to universal truth and morals: whereas it is the very antithesis of the fundamental spirit of the Hindu religion: whereas it flouts the elementary rights of human equality…this all India Hindu Mahasabha declares its uncompromising opposition to the system and calls upon the Hindu society to put a speedy end to it.”

(source: Religion and Society – By S. Radhakrishnan ASIN 8172231636 p. 129-133).

R P Masani has observed: 

"Caste riven though the population was, these groups may be likened to the fingers of one's hand, perpetually separated, yet perpetually co-operating."

(source: Our Heritage and Its Significance - By Shripad Rama Sharma p.93).

Sri Aurobindo, while praising the original caste system, does not spare it in its later stages: "it is the nature of human institutions to degenerate; there is no doubt that the institution of caste degenerated. It ceased to be determined by spiritual qualifications which, once essential, have now come to be subordinate and even immaterial and is determined by the purely material tests of occupation and birth... By this change it has set itself against the fundamental tendency of Hinduism which is to insist on the spiritual and subordinate the material and thus lost most of its meaning. the spirit of caste arrogance, exclusiveness and superiority came to dominate it instead of the spirit of duty, and the change weakened the nation and helped to reduce us to our present condition..." 

(source: India's Rebirth - By Sri Aurobindo Publisher: Mira Aditi (ISBN 2-902776-32-2  p 27). 

The Varna scheme is a multi-dimensional, omnibus scheme of social organization. According to Sri Aurobindo, it is "at once spiritual, psychic, ethical and economic order.." 

(source: The Human Cycle - By Sri Aurobindo p. 166).

Sir Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan one of the most profound philosophers of this century, writes: 

"The institution of caste illustrates the spirit of comprehensive synthesis characteristic of the Hindu mind with its faith in the collaboration of races and the co-operation of cultures.
Paradoxical as it may seem, the system of caste is the outcome of intolerance and trust. Though it may now have degenerated into an instrument of oppression and intolerance, though it tends to perpetuate inequality and develop the spirit of exclusiveness, these unfortunate effects are not the central motives of the caste system." "The system of caste insists that the law of social life should not be cold and cruel competition, but harmony and co-operation. Society is not a field of rivalry among individuals. The castes are not allowed to compete with one another."

"Civilization is not the suppression of races less capable of or less advanced in culture by people of higher understanding. God does not give us the right to destroy or enslave the weak and the unfit. One race may not be as clever or as strong as another, yet the highest idealism requires that we should give equality of opportunity even to unequal groups." 

" The trail of man is dotted with the graves of countless communities and races which reached an untimely end. But is there any justification for this violation of human life? Have we any idea of what the world loses when one racial culture is extinguished?

Indiscriminate racial amalgamation was not encouraged by the Hindu thinkers. In dealing with the problem of the conflict of the different racial groups, Hinduism adopted the only safe course of democracy, viz., that each racial group should be allowed to develop the best in it without impeding the progress of others. Caste, on its racial side, is the affirmation of the infinite diversity of human groups.  In spite of the divisions, there is an inner cohesion among the Hindu society from the Himalayas to the Cape Comorin." 

(source: The Hindu View of Life - By Sir Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan p. 73-77. Material in this book was originally delivered in the form of lectures, the Upton Lectures, in 1926, at Manchester College, Oxford).

 

Slavery in Australia

Aborigines in Australia were classed as wildlife under Flora &Fauna Act till 1967

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Dharampal (1922 - 2006) a Gandhian and author of several books including The Beautiful Tree and Indian Science and Technology in the Eighteenth century.

He wrote extensively of the damage the British Raj inflicted on India and Indians:

"The conquered in their view, had ultimately to disappear, if not wholly physically, at least as a culture and civilization. In Australia, and New Zealand practically all the local inhabitants were wiped out soon enough; in North America near complete elimination happened, over 300-400 years, and in Ireland only partially. The indigenous population of the Americas had been estimated at 112 to 140 millions in 1492. 

In India a large number perished by British brutality and deliberate creation of famines, violation of persons bodies and dignity; in Palnad in Andhra, half of the population was said to be have perished every ten years, during several decades after the subjugation of the areas by Britain. It seems as if the intellectuals and leaders of Britain hated India, and felt outraged that in spite of all their brutalities, smashing of Indian institutions, high extortions, and tortures, men made famines and expropriation of Indian resources to the British state, and thus the all round breakdown of Indian society, the Indians on the whole, could not be wiped out that easily. "

(source:
Despoliation and Defaming of India – By Dharampal published by Bharat Peetham, Wardha Other India Press, Goa  p. 1 - 17). For more refer to The Unity of India - By Dileep Karanth - svabhinava.org). Refer to Loot: in search of the East India Company - By Nick Robins and How India became poor - indiarealist.com

And Sermons from the West?

"During the four centuries spanning the time between 1492, when Christopher Columbus first set foot on the "New World" and 1892, when the US Census Bureau concluded that there were fewer than a quarter million indigenous people surviving within the country's claimed boundaries, a hemisphere population estimated to have been as great as 125 million was reduced by something over 90 percent.  The people had died in their millions of being hacked apart with axes and words, burned alive and trampled under horses, hunted as game and fed to dogs, shot, beaten, stabbed, scalped for bounty, hanged on meathooks and thrown over the side of ships at sea, worked to death as slave laborers, intentionally starved and frozen to death during multitude of forced marches and internments, and, in an unknown number of instances deliberately infested with epidemic diseases. Thus occurred what even dishonest commentators have acknowledged as being "very probably the greatest demographic disaster in history."

(source: A Little Matter of Genocide: Holocaust and Denial in the Americas 1492 to the Present - By Ward Churchill p. 1 - 3). Also refer to Red Earth - White Lies - By Vine Deloria Jr. 

Jakob De Roover is a Postdoctoral Fellow of the Research Foundation (FWO) at the Research Centre Vergelijkende Cultuurwetenschap, Ghent University, Belgium. He has written:

"Recently, the European Parliament hosted a meeting on “caste discrimination in South Asia ”. At the meeting, participants stated that “ India is being ruled by castes not by laws” and that they demanded justice, because there “is one incredible India and one untouchable India .” 

First, the dominant conception of the caste system has emerged from the accounts by Christian missionaries, travelers and colonial administrators. Rather than being neutral, these accounts were shaped by a Christian framework. That is, the religion of European visitors to India had informed them beforehand that they would find false religion and devil worship there, and that false religion always manifested itself in social evils. Especially the Protestants rebuked the “evil priests” of Hinduism for imposing the laws of caste in the name of religion. They told the Indians that conversion to Protestantism was a conversion to equality. Thus, Indian souls were to be saved from damnation and caste discrimination.

Second, this Christian account of “the Hindu religion” and its “caste system” informed colonial policies in British India . Building on the theological framework, scholars now wrote “scientific” treatises on Hindu superstition and caste discrimination. The Christian mission found its secular counterpart in the idea of the civilising mission, which told the West that it had to rescue the natives from the clutches of superstition and caste. One no longer promoted religious conversion, but the colonial educational system harped on “the horrors of Hindu society.”

Fourth, the “Dalit” movement of today is the product of these colonial movements. The notion of “Dalits” makes sense only within the colonial account of India , which had postulated the existence of one single group of “outcastes” or “untouchables” that was supposedly exploited by the upper castes. In reality, it concerns a variety of caste groups, with no criteria to unite them besides the claim that they are all “downtrodden.” Indeed, many of these groups are poor and discriminated against by other caste groups. However, their socio-economic interests have been hijacked by some of their western-educated elite members. In the name of the downtrodden, these elites establish NGOs and then travel from conference to conference and country to country in order to reveal the plight of the “Dalits” to eager western audiences and secure funding from donor agencies.

Fifth, when present-day Europeans rebuke Indian society for the “barbarism” of caste discrimination, they are reproducing the old stanzas of the civilising mission. Such a stance of superiority perhaps worked in the context of colonialism. But today, at a time when Indians buy some of the European industrial giants and Europe is in need of more collaboration with India , it is ill-advised to continue this type of civilisational propaganda. The implication is that there is only one way to get rid of socio-economic wrongs here: one has to eradicate both the social structure and the Hindu civilisation. It is as though one would blame the racism, bingedrinking, pedophilia, poverty, homelessness and domestic violence in the contemporary West on its age-old civilisation.

The times have changed. As Europeans, we need to reflect on our deep-rooted sense of superiority and how this informs our moralising discourse on human rights in other parts of the world. To appreciate the impression we give to Indians with our statements on caste discrimination, just imagine a possible world in which the Indian government regularly castigates the US for its racism against African-Americans and the disproportionate death penalties, and the EU for the treatment of South Asians in England, Turks in Germany, women in Romania, the Basque movement in Spain, gypsies in Italy ... just imagine Indian members of parliament consistently blaming the very structure of western societies as the cause of all these wrongs. Europe needs to wake up fast. The time of colonialism is over. If we do not change our attitudes, the irritation towards the EU will grow in countries like India and China .


(source: Does Europe have a Civilising mission in India ? – By Jakob De Roover
).  Refer to London is most unequal city in Western world with gap between rich and poor widest since slavery - By Steve Doughty - dailymail.co.uk and British rioters the spawn of a bankrupt ruling elite – By Theodore Dalrymple

 

The Social Aloofness of the British in India

 

Indians as Inferior Race?  Racism in British India.

No Ten Commandments in the East of the Suez Canal?

Lord Mayo (1822 - 1872) declared, "We are all British gentlemen engaged in the magnificent work of governing an inferior race in India."

(Note: The legacy of Western civilization to the world - Dark Ages, Crusades, The Inquisition, Witch Hunt, Slavery, Colonization of Africa, Asia, America and Australia, Imperialism, World Wars, Holocaust, Bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, Conversion and destruction of Native cultures to Christianity, Drugs, School shootings in American schools, Gun violence, Racism, Clergy sex Abuse, Viagra spamming American Capitalism, quest for individualism, Iraq war …. ). 

(image source: Imperial Lives in the Victorian Raj - By David Gilmour). 

For more refer to chapters on Aryan Invasion Theory and European Imperialism. Refer to  British aristocracy ‘ate human flesh’ - indianrealist.wordpress.com and Loot: in search of the East India Company - By Nick Robins and How India became poor - indiarealist.com. Refer to Hidden from History: The Canadian Holocaust - By Kevin Annett and documentary Unrepentant and Canada's Genocide Refer to Think tank alleges British MPs involved in promoting evangelism in India - hinduvoice.co.uk. Refer to Columbus, The Indians, and Human Progress - By Howard Zinn

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In 1452 Pope Nicholas V authorized Portugese to abduct blacks from Africa and force them into slavery. Dum Diversas, a bull authorising the Portuguese to reduce any non-Christians to the status of slaves, was issued by Papal authorities. All black people were depicted as the descendants of biblical Cain who killed righteous Abel and was later banished by thier father to Africa. This invented legend gave Christians needed theological justification to abduct and enslave blacks. Bible is full of verses supporting slavery.

(source: religioustolerance.org).

Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) Poet, author, philosopher, Nobel prize laureate, says in his Nationalism: 

"Her (India's) caste system is the true outcome of the spirit of tolerance. For India has all along been trying experiments in evolving a social unity within which all the different peoples could be held together, while fully enjoying the freedom of their own differences. The tie has been as loose as possible, yet at close as the circumstances permitted. This has produced something like a United States of a social federation, whose common name is Hinduism!"

(source: Hindu Culture and The Modern Age - By Dewan Bahadur K.S. Ramaswami Shastri - Annamalai University 1956 p.113).

Koenraad Elst has written:

The number of Africans killed in the age of the slave trade and colonial conquest is estimated at 50 million or more. It has been said that Europeans found the Holocaust so gruesome because the things which they had considered acceptable in the case of the black “savages” had now been committed on white Europeans. In the conquests of America and Africa, the same psychology was at work as in Auschwitz: the inferior races had to make way (or Lebensraum, “living space”) for the superior race. In some cases the massacre was “functional”, the result of an unplanned escalation. In others, the massacre was entirely “intentional” and pre-planned.

(source: Negationism in India - By Koenraad Elst  p. 6).

Author Beatrice Pitney Lamb has pointed out:

"Clearly the Indian way of assimilating foreigners - by allowing them to pursue their own customs within some niche of the caste system - has led to greater variety and tolerance within the country than exists in the United States, where immigrants have been assimilated through a school program emphasizing 100 per cent Americanization - and hence, implicitly, the rejection of inherited cultural roots."

(source: India: A World in Transition - By Beatrice Pitney Lamb p. 363).

Koenraad Elst points out: " The Buddha never said: “Down with the Brahmins! Break Brahmin tyranny! On the contrary,  he taught about how to be a true Brahmin, as against having the outer attributes but not the inner qualities of the Brahmin. Many of his disciples were Brahmins. The myth of Buddhist social revolution against Brahmin tyranny can be disproven on many counts with the Buddha’s own words.”

(source: Ayodhya and After - By Koenraad Elst - Voice of India - Issues Before Hindu Society  SKU: INBK2650  p.141).

Rajiv Malhotra  ( ? )  has observed:

"Caste systems in India evolved, just as they have done in the US, as a labor group by the kind of work. This is why each of India's castes corresponds to a category of labor, much like the modern guild of American workers of a given profession, with its own procedures for membership and strategies to compete with outsiders. In India, this segmentation got perpetuated because training was done through work apprenticeship under one's parents, thereby turning family lineages into specialized labor.

Perhaps, ancient rulers found it easier to negotiate with a given category of labor collectively, much like the British created the landowner class (zamindars) in India as a more efficient way to maximize the collection of taxes. Most law firms in the US are owned by Jewish families; most motels are owned by Gujaratis from India; and this kind of list goes on. Communities evolve towards centers of skill, excellence, and specialized assets. Bush and Gore are both political dynasties." A key difference is that in India, caste became explicitly codified, whereas in America social structure by ethnicity or family lineage remains uncodified and subliminal. But what is commonly not pointed out today is that India's smritis (codified rules) pertaining to many topics including caste, were meant to be specific to a given time, place and cultural context and not intended as universal 'commandments' for all people at all times. 

"The Hindu identity is still largely outcast in America or subverted in many instances. Media, education and public images of Hinduism are often dominated by negative stereotypes."

(source:  Is There an American Caste System? - By Rajiv Malhotra - sulekha.com). Refer to Loot: in search of the East India Company - By Nick Robins and How India became poor - indiarealist.com

Market fundamentalism and India's rootless Elites  

Sandhya Jain (  ?  ) author of Adi Deo Arya Devata. A Panoramic View of Tribal-Hindu Cultural Interface and eminent columnist in the mainstream English Media of India, and one who has written eloquently about Hinduism, says:

"The American Model of Governance is a failure. The system which allowed Presidents to induct private sector cronies into the highest echelons of government gave de facto control of the economy, polity, and even foreign policy, to Corporates rather than professionals with accountability. Over time, this eroded all institutions through de facto privatisation of all activities, to the point that even Intelligence gathering has been out-sourced! American government today is truly a headless torso.

The Wall Street hustlers are everywhere. India ’s rootless elite is increasingly enamoured of the American model – oblivious of its obvious failures – precisely because it wishes to enjoy the benefits of untrammelled power without responsibility.

The rest of us will revel in the validation of the Hindu varna system as a hierarchy of values relevant to all ages – brains on top (brahmin), state power on the side (kshatriya), wealth-generators in the middle (vaishya) and the rest of the people all around (shudra). In Hindu India, wealth served the society and the state; a system where wealth subordinates society and state is Asuric, immoral, and destructive of all human values."

(source: End free market fundamentalism - By Sandhya Jain - vijayvaani.com).

But finally, have the people who dismiss caste as an Aryan imposition on the Dravidians, or as an inhuman and nazi system, ever attempted to understand its original purpose and genius? Is it really worse than the huge Class differences and racism you can see nowadays in Europe and America? The West can boast no advantage here, no effectual superiority. Street-sweepers are rarely invited to lunch with middle-class families, yet virtuous Europeans are often heard decrying caste injustice and the odious Brahmin who will not share his meal with the butcher or allow the sweeper or the tanner to draw water from his well. 

The Imperial British and their Uncomfortable Claims:  

Alexis Charles Henri Clérel de Tocqueville (1805-1859) was one of the greatest political thinkers, most prescient commentators on American society, had observed that the English in India behaved as if they too were members of a caste. According to Guy Sorman: "He might well have concluded that the notion of caste was universal and not specific to India." 

(source: The Genius of India - By Guy Sorman  ('Le Genie de l'Inde') p. x).

Though the Imperial British scoffed at the debased caste system, and talked about the downtrodden Hindoos, yet in India and they themselves continued assiduously to cultivate a detachment from the Indians.

"A British establishment in India was situated outside the old walled town. It was generally divided into two parts, the civil lines and the cantonment. The former was spaciously arranged with lots of green between the bungalows inhabited by the sahiblogs and the latter was organized on severe military lines. By and large the British community in India lived its own life, ran its own shops and newspapers, entertained itself at exclusive halls and concerts, admired or criticized itself on Chowringhee Road and Connaught Circus, congratulated itself at the official receptions at the government houses and the viceregal palace, exalted itself at the Imperial Orchestra played Rule Brittania on the Mall at Simla or titillated itself down memory lane as a certain Mr. Cunningham performed Othello at the Gaiety Theatre. 

F. Yeats-Brown in the Bengal Lancer, put it bluntly, 

"The Brahmins, made a circle within which they cooked their food. So did we. We were a caste, pariahs to them, princes in our estimation.
The compulsions of imperialism negated all passions for democratic equality or Christian egalitarianism. Imperialism, by virtue of its very nature, was insular, racist and arrogant." 

(source: The Raj Syndrome: A Study in Imperial Perceptions - By Suhash Chakravarty. Penguin Books. 1991 p. 87-90).

Dogs and Indians?

"Dogs and Indians not allowed” 

           - Such a barbaric signs during the British Raj clearly classified Indians as belonging to some other-than-human species.

***  

"...dogs and Indians" were, by notification in that precise language, excluded from some of "Europeans only" clubs. Indians were not allowed to travel by railway carriages, or use railway waiting rooms, reserved for Europeans. Not only that, Indian judges were not allowed to try Europeans in the districts and the Ilbert Bill, introduced in 1883 during Lord Ripon's viceroyalty, to remedy the situation, had to be withdrawn in the face of vicious opposition by Europeans and Anglo-Indians.

(source: Colonialism and animals - By Hiranmay Karlekar - dailypioneer.com - March 5 2004).

 

Britannia, a lion at her feet, examines a string of pearls she has taken from a cushion held up by an Indian woman.

Soon India would be depicted as a naked black female submissively offering her rich jewels to Britannia.

  India now entered in the cataclysmic epoch which has left few native cultures of the world intact – the Era of Colonialism. The Indians, bearers of the world’s oldest civilizations were treated like children by people who thought themselves as superior race.

(image source: British Library. Refer to India: Empire of the Spirit - By Michael Wood).

Refer to What Every "Ugly American" Must Know about the "Civilized British - www.larouchepac.com. Refer to Hidden from History: The Canadian Holocaust - By Kevin Annett and documentary Unrepentant and Canada's Genocide. For Cruelty inflicted by Christianity - Watch Constantine's Sword movie - By Oren Jacoby

***

Jawaharlal Nehru has remarked: "In India every European, be he German, or Pole or Rumanian, is automatically a member of the ruling race. Railway carriages, station retiring rooms, benches in parks, etc. are marked 'For Europeans Only.' This is bad enough in South Africa or elsewhere, but to have to put up with it in one's own country is a humiliating and exasperating reminder of one's enslaved condition." 

In this land of caste the British have built up a caste which is rigid and exclusive."

(source: The Discovery of India - By Jawaharlal Nehru. p.295).


An Indian woodcut from around 1870 shows a train with separate carriages for Europeans and for Indians.

(source: Colonial Overlords: Time Frame Ad 1850-1900  - Time-Life Books. The Scramble for Africa ASIN 0809464667 Noon of the Raj. p. 22). Refer to Jesus Christ: Artifice for Aggression - By Sita Ram Goel. For more refer to chapter on European Imperialism.

Sir Winston Churchill's attitude to Indians was quite explicitly racist. He told the Foreign Secretary, Leopold Charles Maurice Stennett Amery that:

“the Hindus were a foul race…and he wished Bert Harris (Air Marshall Bert "Bomber" Harris  could send some of his surplus bombers to destroy them.”  

***

"The Viceroy sat at the apex of a colossal pyramid of power, and British rule was founded on an idea of hierarchy as baffling in its complexity as the caste system of the Hindus themselves. The Hindus had their castes while the British had their classes, and in each case very fine distinctions sometimes separated one social level from the next. The subtleties of the British class system became elaborately codified in the Warrant of Precedence, which was designed as an infallible guide to hierarchy in India, indispensable to the proper arrangement of ceremony, conference or even of a mere dinner party."

(source: India Britannica - By Geoffrey Moorhouse  p. 130). Refer to Columbus, The Indians, and Human Progress - By Howard Zinn.

Dogs and Indians?

"...dogs and Indians" were, by notification in that precise language, excluded from some of "Europeans only" clubs. Indians were not allowed to travel by railway carriages, or use railway waiting rooms, reserved for Europeans. Not only that, Indian judges were not allowed to try Europeans in the districts and the Ilbert Bill, introduced in 1883 during Lord Ripon's viceroyalty, to remedy the situation, had to be withdrawn in the face of vicious opposition by Europeans and Anglo-Indians.

(source: Colonialism and animals - By Hiranmay Karlekar - dailypioneer.com - March 5 2004).

In 1930 the Pahartali European Club, which bore the notorious sign 'Dogs and Indians not allowed'.

Indian caste system created by British

An umbrella group of Hindus says prominent British members of parliament who want legislation in Britain to protect against caste discrimination are being "misled by Christian groups".

The Hindu Council UK (HCUK), which is opposed to religious conversion, said in a new report that caste discrimination does not exist in Britain - and that caste, in any case, was created by the British in India . "Today, we are putting the record straight. We are also naming and shaming those who spread misinformation about Hinduism and its relationship to caste in an ill-disguised attempt to vilify the Hindu people and cause division within our community," said HCUK general secretary Anil Bhanot. He claimed in his foreword to the report that ruling Labour Party MPs Rob Marris and Jeremy Corbyn, "who are lobbying the Department of Communities and Local Government to legislate against caste discrimination, may have been misled by Christian groups who want, quite simply, to 'save' people from the 'falsehood' of Hinduism and convert people to Christianity."

"Caste has been the subject of ill-informed comment for too long," Bhanot said. The report's author, Raj Pandit Sharma, added that the caste system had been created by the British during their colonial rule in India . "It was the British who single-handedly formulated the caste schedules that remain in place today," Sharma wrote. "The evils manifest in the current form of the caste system cannot be ascribed to the Hindu faith. The current adulteration of the Hindu 'varnashram' system is a direct result of generations of British colonial bureaucracy."

Accusing some anti-caste groups in Britain of "seeking government legislation and government funds to tackle this supposed problem", the HCUK said: "Caste, as described in the Hindu scriptures, is not determined by birth." "It is no joke to have to ward off concerted misinformation campaigns from UK parliamentarians who really ought to know better," Bhanot said. Caste, the group said, is "assumed by most non-Hindus to be always a gross form of unjust discrimination, an alleged feature of Hinduism so maligned it justifies attempts by Christians to convert Hindus here in the UK , in India , and elsewhere." It, however, acknowledged and condemned what it called the "abuse of varnashram" in India .

(source: Indian caste system created by British: Hindu group - hindustantimes.com).

Claude Alvares has written: "The English establishment themselves as a separate ruling caste; like other Indian castes, they did not inter-marry or eat with the lower (native) caste. Their children were shipped off to public schools in England, while they themselves kept to their clubs and bungalows in special suburbs known as cantonments and civil lines."

(source: Decolonizing History: Technology and Culture in India, China and the West 1492 to the Present Day - By Claude Alvares p. 191).

Amaury de Reincourt (1918 - ) was born in Orleans, France. He received his B.A. from the Sorbonne and his M.A. from the University of Algiers. He is author of several books including The American empire and The Soul of India, he wrote:

"But the most important result was to create a tremendous ill feeling between many Indians and many distrustful, infuriated British, a chasm that was never really closed again. From now on, the social aloofness of the British in India became legendary and the British rulers became a new super-caste imposed on top of the existing caste structure, as rigidly exclusive as any native caste; they became the super-Brahmins in charge of government and administration."

And it was not long before Indians themselves saw the difference. Victor Jacquemont (1801 -1832) who traveled throughout India in the early 1830's, pointed out that Indians "have two expressions only to mention a European. A saheb logue, a lord or gentleman...and a gora logue..a white man. The former character is much respected by them; the latter may be dreaded, as it is indeed very often quite dreadful, but respected never. This aristocratic character of British society stamped its features on the British Empire and accommodated itself quite naturally with India's caste system."

(source: The Soul of India - By Amaury de Riencourt   p. 205 -223). 

The indenture system

In the colonies of the British, French and the Dutch, exploitation in one form or the other stalked the Indian indentured laborers.

The Coolies who arrived to work in the sugar estates in the West Indies were marched to their barracks known as ‘Nigger Yard.’ It was the same in Mauritius -- only the language was different, ‘camps des Noirs’ or the backbreaking work in the canefields.  

In 1843 the first shipload of 217 Indian labourers arrived in Port of Spain in Trinidad in the Caribbean. And in the same decade, others were taken to British Guiana in South America, and Mauritius off the coast of Africa; in the 1860's to the British colony of Natal in South Africa; in the 1870's to the Dutch colony of Surinam; in the 1880's to Fiji. By 1917-20 the indenture system was abolished but not before 1.5 million Indian bonded labourers had been induced move to remote parts of the globe in the service of British capitalism.

In South Africa they worked from daybreak to nightfall, from four in the morning to seven in the night, and far beyond their capacity. They were strictly confined to the limits of their master’s estate. Beating and flogging was part of the regular routine in the plantations. In the West Indies the cattle whip was employed; in Malaya it was the cane, and in South Africa it was the rawhide cattle lash. One callous estate manager reportedly said “As long as the coolie is working for you, you have the right to do what you like with him—that is, short of killing”. 

Some Caribbean planters solved the problem of the sick by abandoning them to fate. In Grenada the majority of the 2000 Indians were kicked off the estates when they became ill and allowed to die on the road. The editor of a Jamaica newspaper wrote in 1863: 

‘One must see these wretched hungry, houseless and outcast specters picking up in the streets a chance bone or any putrid offal…. and so crippled, nude, skeletoned before their death, they live on, no parish authority taking them in’.

Unlike the Chinese and the Blacks, the Indians were also wary of the penchant for proselytizing among white missionaries who were on the lookout for ‘heathen converts’. Indians were always branded as the dregs of their country, lowborn, even criminal. Inspite of this, the Europeans managed to take Indian women for sexual purposes – usually the daughter of a coolie.

(source: Life of Indians Overseas: Laborers in the Plantations - indolink.com).  Refer to Jesus Christ: Artifice for Aggression - By Sita Ram Goel and Watch An Invasion through Conversion - videoyahoo.com. Refer to Columbus, The Indians, and Human Progress - By Howard Zinn

Dave Freedholm teaches world religion and philosophy at a nationally recognized independent college preparatory school in the U.S. and a practitioner of Hindu spirituality for some years, says:

'Caste' was used to justify Christian proselytizing and for continued domination over the Indian population, and this continues to be the case today. Also, the ills of contemporary Indian society (poverty, caste, etc.), which were exacerbated in part due to centuries long foreign occupation, exploitation and domination, are blamed primarily on Hindu thought. Thus, some Western scholars, ignoring the historic subversion of Indian society and Hinduism by the West, align themselves with the 'oppressed' against the 'evils' of Hinduism. The victim is made to feel guilty and hence the 'Hindu shame' I find amongst some Hindus.

Most Christians today (and most scholars of religion) would be scandalized if the feudal system, slavery, capitalist exploitation or anti-Judaism were used to define the essence of Christianity. They would understand these things to be historically and socially bound and not part of Christian universal ideals. In short, descriptions of Christianity in textbooks would distinguish the core or essence of Christian theology from specific social, historical and political contexts. However, Hinduism is not treated in the same way. 

It does seem that the caste system, as understood today, was foisted on Indian society by its Western (Christian) oppressors, the British. Efforts within Hindu society to reform itself, and to provide a new vision of Hinduism, are too often ignored or downplayed.

(source: Hinduism in American Classrooms - By Rajiv Malhotra - sulekha.com).  Refer to Varna and Jatis: The Need for Clarity - By B Shantanu - indiacause.com.

Drain Inspector's Report?
E
xclusive clubs into self-righteous assertion?

Recently, a CBS 60 Minutes segment on TV, showing the plight of Untouchables and caste system of India was done by Christiane Amanpour was nothing but a typical example of sensational journalism done in the West.  This kind of portrayal will always be negative at best. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, when he labeled the book," Mother India." by Katherine Mayo (published in 1927), as "Drain Inspector's Report" and a calculated smear on India's face with malice pre-determined. Incidentally, Katherine Mayo, was no big fan of Mahatma Gandhi or Hinduism!  

(Please refer to Katherine Mayo's hatred for Hindus in the chapter on Glimpses III and European Imperialism). Refer to Insults to the Mahatma, ignored by India - rediff.com. Also refer to Hate group numbers top 800 in USA - Southern Poverty Law Center.  Watch Sex crimes and the Vatican - videogoogle.com.  Refer to Christian persecution against the Hellenes - ethnicoi.org. Refer to Genocide and Ethnic Cleansing of Kashmiri Hindu Pandits - And the World Remained Silent - Movie http://www.jaia-bharati.org/films/and-the-world.mpg  

Inequality, is a “natural order.” said Martin Luther, author of the Reformation.

It still is a natural order to the West. Ask Wall Street!

 

      

This kind of portrayal will always be negative at best. 

In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, when he labeled the book," Mother India." by Katherine Mayo (published in 1927), as "Drain Inspector's Report" and a calculated smear on India's face with malice pre-determined. Incidentally, Katherine Mayo, was no big fan of Mahatma Gandhi or Hinduism!  

Watch An Invasion through Conversion - videoyahoo.com and Watch Sex crimes and the Vatican - videogoogle.com.  Watch video - Christian Missionary Misdeeds in India. Refer to The Dead Sea Scrolls - An Eastern View of a Western Crisis - By N. S. Rajaram - burningcross.net. Refer to Defaming of Hinduism-I – By V Sundaram – newstodaynet.com and Defaming of Hinduism-II – By V Sundaram – newstodaynet.com  For more on Christian Intolerance refer to chapters on The Goa Inquisition, European Imperialism, Conversion, and First Indologists

***

Refer to Income differences - How the Right rationalizes racial inequality and Hispanic cheap manual labor and Racial differences in employment careers - Six former and current employees of an Indiana Home Depot Inc.(NYSE:HD - news) store have sued the world's largest home-improvement retailer, saying management retaliated against them when they complained of racial discrimination and harassment. Watch video on Excesses on Wall street - abcnews.com.

Suhash Chakravarty author has observed in his book:

"Katherine Mayo set the trend for a new branch of literature whose preoccupation was to stretch the morbidity of Hindu customs, superstitions and rituals to a point of absurdity and invest it with a unique inhumanity." "It is small wonder that Katherine Mayo ingeniously appended Indian nationalism with the superstitions of a ritualistic Hinduism and fused them into a powerful anti-Indian demonstration. The impact of Katherine Mayo was more than ephemeral. She rendered the racial arrogance of the exclusive clubs into self-righteous assertion."

(source: The Raj Syndrome: A Study in Imperial Perceptions - By Suhash Chakravarty. Penguin Books.1991 p. 76 -79). Refer to Insults to the Mahatma, ignored by India - rediff.com.

Crucifying the Heathen Menace

 

Equating caste with race. That is what the colonialists used to do in justifying their rule over India’s inferior dark-skinned subhuman masses.

 

It is quite nauseating that he and many others use their supposed infallible word of a jealous male demiurge (referred to as ‘god’) in which anti-Semitism, inequality and slavery are sacrosanct principles in order to attack Hinduism. In reality what we have is the desperate clutching at straws by a religion that once defined western civilisation, yet is now about as relevance to people’s lives as the woolly mammoth which once roamed the same regions of Europe. Like that hairy elephant Rev Haslam’s creed is meeting its inevitable nemesis and for that very reason is desperate to stay alive by latching onto issues such as caste and showing how superior it is to polytheistic creeds such as Hinduism; which despite lip service to tolerance ultimately decries as backward heathen idol-worship. Just as Christianity once wiped out indigenous pagan beliefs in Europe through warfare and mass murder, so its modern crusaders employs softer techniques under the euphemism of human rights, tolerance and freedom of conscience.

Karl Marx shared the Christian missionary’s distaste for darker-skinned subhumans who were enthralled to hideous idols. In attacking Hinduism the atheist Left have long compromised their aversion to the Christian theology from which Marxism sprang (their holy prophet did after all only revamp the ideas of Hegel) in order to crush the deep spirituality and ancient civilisation of India which they regard as such an affront to their ideas of progress. In the countries where communism reigned supreme we should look at how non-monotheistic beliefs fared. The Soviets crushed shamanism in Siberia while they happily shared vodka and caviar with the leaders of the Russian Orthodox Church. China encourages the spread of Christianity while it annihilates Tibetan Buddhism and the Falun Gong movement.

 

In this Final Conflict they yearn for a Final Solution, which is already happening when we look at how western-funded Christian terrorists in Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh have ethnically cleansed Hindus are gunpoint or forbidden the celebration of Hindu festivals at the end of a Kalashnikov. What happened to paganism in Europe is being repeated in India through use of hi-tech media and reference to human rights all covered up with cheesy sinister smiles.

 

Final Battleground

 

The use of caste issues by right-wing Christian extremists is merely a re-enactment of the carnage which was unleashed in Europe by a faith which has historically shown scant tolerance. In the thirteenth century the Teutonic Knights violently suppressed the last vestiges of traditional European beliefs they decried as pagans and heathens in their bloodbath against the Wends, Livonians, Estonians, Oeselians, Curonians and Semigallians. Lithuania valiantly held out until the end of the fourteenth century.  

So even this idea that Christianity is the traditional religion of Europe needs to be challenged as that continent remained pagan actually after the point of modern state formation in the Baltic region. Now the wheel is turning full circle as Estonia is perhaps the most secularised country in Europe. However it does not simply mean that the Estonians believe in nothing as is often the case where Christianity has lost ground elsewhere in Europe.

(source:  Caste games: Battleground India - hinduhumanrights.info).

The Hypocrisy of The Indian Church?
C
asteism in Christianity

With the advent of the Christian missionaries in India under the patronage from the British rule in the eighteenth century, a new chapter of proselytisation began. The missionaries were able to use this weakness in Hinduism to convert those who were worst hit by the caste prejudice. These missionaries concentrated their “charity” work mainly in the tribal areas. They told the tribals that they were not Hindus, that their indigenous culture and religion was different from Hinduism. They taught them that Christianity, an alien religion was their own; that Jesus Christ who was born and lived in the Middle-East was also a ‘dalit’ like them and that Christianity was a religion without the caste bias and offered them socio-economic equality. In their desire to lead a life of respect, thousands of tribals got converted to Christianity assuming that they had found an answer to the wretched caste system in Hinduism.

Little did they know that conversion to Christianity would not redeem them from social discrimination and untouchability, because though Jesus never advocated the caste system, Christianity in India was not free from the caste bias. Christian outfits which criticized Hinduism for its caste system, practised discrimination based on casteism in their Churches. In spite of the fact that around 75% of the Christians are ‘dalits’ who got converted to Christianity to lose their caste or ‘outcaste’ tag, Dalit Christians within the Church were discriminated against and were denied powers within the ecclesiastical structure.

In the churches or places of worship, which were generally laid out in the shape of a cross, the Christians of upper caste have always humiliated their Dalit fellow Christians by occupying the central part of the church, while the Dalits were assigned to the wings. The Dalits were to take communion only after the upper caste people had done so. In some Protestant churches, there were separate cups for the Dalits at the eucharistic celebration. In the Catholic churches, there were separate communion rails, separate cemeteries in Madras dioceses like Trichy and Pondicherry. Such practices were also found in the Protestant churches.

Indian history appears to be remarkably free of large scale peasant revolts (like The French Revolution and The Russian Revolution) of the kind that have provided the historians of Europe and China with materials for assessing class antagonisms.

Dalit Christian?  How can a person be a ‘Dalit’ when he is a Christian; for Christianity does not recognise the caste system which they claim is an evil prevalent only in the Hindu society. 

Refer to Petition: Christians against proselytism. Watch Sex crimes and the Vatican - videogoogle.com. Watch An Invasion through Conversion - videoyahoo.com. Refer to Columbus, The Indians, and Human Progress - By Howard Zinn and refer to Christian persecution against the Hellenes - ethnicoi.org.

Watch video - Brahmins in India have become a minority

***

Rev. John Duraisamy, an editor of Sarvaviyabi, a Tamil Weekly from the archdiocese of Pondicherry-Cuddalore published two cartoons consecutively on 4 & 11th July 1999. These cartoons were an insult to the 240 million dalits or the untouchables of India. The Archbishop of Pondicherry who belonged to the same caste as the editor, was silent on the matter.

Archbishop George Zur, Apostolic Pro-Nuncio to India said while inaugurating the CBCI (Catholic Bishops Conference of India) in 1991:

“Though Catholics of the lower caste and tribes form 60 per cent of Church membership they have no place in decision-making. Scheduled caste converts are treated as lower caste not only by high caste Hindus but by high caste Christians too. In rural areas they cannot own or rent houses, however well-placed they may be. Separate places are marked out for them in the parish churches and burial grounds. Inter-caste marriages are frowned upon and caste tags are still appended to the Christian names of high caste people. Casteism is rampant among the clergy and the religious. Though Dalit Christians make 65 per cent’ of the 10 million Christians in the South, less than 4 per cent of the parishes are entrusted to Dalit priests. There are no Dalits among 13 Catholic Bishops of Tamilnadu or among the Vicars-general and rectors of seminaries and directors of social assistance centres.”

Logically, the term ‘Dalit Christians’ is self-contradictory. How can a person be a ‘Dalit’ when he is a Christian; for Christianity does not recognise the caste system which is an evil prevalent only in the Hindu society. 

When a person gets converted, he is no longer a Hindu and thus does not fall into any category of the caste hierarchy. But unfortunately, in India we do have this category of people who got converted to Christianity in the vain hope of leading a respectable life. Now while the progressive Hindu society is fast changing and the dalits are increasingly gaining respect in the society and the state patronage in the form of reservations, economic concessions, allotment of land, etc. , the ‘dalits’ who got converted do not get any such benefits in Christianity.

Conversion to Christianity has only added to the misery of the dalits. Many Dalit Christian leaders refer to the twice-alienated situation of the Dalit Christians in India, namely, discrimination within the Church and discrimination by the State as they are denied Scheduled Caste status in the Constitution, and the related privileges which come with that status. It is high time that the dalits realised the true designs of the church that has alienated them from their indigenous religion and culture, which is very much a part of the myriad hues of Hinduism. The hypocrisy of the Indian Church, which does not practice what it preaches, has been exposed. The Dalit Christians are welcome back to the Hindu fold, to get back their due share, where the society, which is in a reformative mode, and the state are making the best efforts to redress the wrongs that have been done by their predecessors.

(source: Casteism in Christianity - indiapride.com). Refer to Columbus, The Indians, and Human Progress - By Howard Zinn

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