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 Title : State of the Caste system and its Vedic Settlement Author : Mangilal Mishra


Caste system
is a material ingredient of the society and not a spiritual ingredient. Marx has written, "Every problem must be analysed in the perspective of the origin or history of every visible object or principle. It should also be observed how the process of evolution of this principle has occurred. We have to examine the current form of this principle in context to the progress of that principle." (Marxism, Page 426).

Marx has laid down a very simple and straightforward path to throw light on the visible objects or principles. Just as we examine the evolution of the caste system and its vedic settlement.

Rise of the caste system :- There is a severe different of opinion among the learned about The origin of the caste system in India. Mr. Senartre believe that caste system originated on basis of family, Max Mueller believes that it began from colour discrimination, Regley says it depends on geneology and Habbatsam thinks the basis is the group.

(Indian census report, 1931 sec. 1 part 1 pages 433-39) Actually this system is so complicated that its factor of origin is not one best many.

The antiquity of the caste system- caste system has prevailed in India since vedic period The caste system existed in the region of the seven rivers and also in mid Aoyavarta, But this caste system propagates internal unity and not seperation. All caste of India Have common cultural base, they have common history and literature. Above all these factor religion had bound everybody tighthy together just like a rope is separated into thin pieces and then tied together to a from a firm rope.

Bisent Smith has said undobtedlly there is a sense of unity in all Indians. This unity is more serious and deep than the geographical seperation or political power. This unity rises above all the barriers of blood, colour, language, customs, outfits or races. The basis reason for this is the affection, trust and devotion of India towards religion.
Dr. Radhakrishnan has said, "The living tradition affects our internal strengths. This brings about the development of human virtues in us and we reach a greater height. This every generation developes a mould of its own thus giving every cultural from its own existence and one feels affection towards it."

The tradition should be moral and only moral traditions can have importance in practise. Set tradition do not have that much importance. Moral tradition is the revealed law. We never had the caste system in a communal form. Pepale were absorbed in the religion of Aryans not individually but in groups.

Sir Herbat Rigley has written, "One experiences an intrinsic affection ammange the Hindus from Himalayas to Kanyakumari (The people of India 1915) What is then the basis or foundation of this affection? If vividity had been given a right place in life then this affection would have vanished. The religion has moulded us internally in such a mould that till today it is intact. India has restored the feeling of unity for ages together working for a common purpose. (the different human races). So the decease of class discrimination never came in India and the internal unity remained intact. Our religion has been dynamic and not static. It has been active without expecting result and not result itself. It can be called as a growing tradition and not the ultimate truth. After giving these things a lot of thought it can be proved that the tie which is binding India together for ages is not material but only spiritual. This unity survives today even after crossing many halting places in history since the vedic period.

The universal worry of caste purification - Caste system prevails not only in India but in also in many countries of the world. There was a rule among the Red Indians of California that if a woman of their caste has illegal relations with a white man or gets married to a white man then that woman will be killed. The Spanish people of mid America, the Danish of Greenland, the French in Maurtius and Tiles island were not allowed legally to get married to the local people there to maintain the purity of their own caste. (WesterMark, short history of marriage, pg. 53-54). Hitler had ordered that in Germany the Aryans will not have any marital ties with the Jews to keep the purity of the Aryans intact. In Germany this law about marriages has been very strict since ancient times. In Burgundy there was a law in which any upper class woman was not allowed to marry someone from the servant class or any person from the lower class, it this happened both of them were killed.

In the Natha people if an upper class woman married a lower class man then they were beaten and then burnt alive. (Koihar, legal protection of woman among the ancient German Page 58-59). In Tahiti if an upper class woman married a lower class man then their children were killed.

Sir Henry Main said "that it was an impossible instance in France that a lady from the Nobless got married to a man from business community or bourgeous. After studying the above examples we come across the following reasons for getting married in the same caste- 1] Maintain a pure race 2] Pride about your caste 3] feeling of superiority 4] There should not be a decrease in number of people of the caste by giving them away in another caste.

Musa had given permission to the daughters of Jellofihead to marry in the same caste as that of his father so that the inherited wealth would stay in his father's family only In Morocco, in Reef of Barbaro women getting married to men who are from outside their dwelling place were not given rights, inter caste marriages are hated and strongly opposed.

Class system: "Accepting the boundless diversity found in the human races is itself the class system," says Dr. Radhakrishnan. The diversities found in the human races about virtues, work and behaviour was tied together with due respect to each caste by the vedic sages and scholars. The class system maintains the unity in the diversity. Because of the social traditions and inherited virtues independent features of behaviour etc. develop in every caste. It is a wrong custim to mould all castes into one by destroying the system and its history. In India under me of class system such a social system was developed which grouped the hundreds and thousands of castes having their own beliefs, behaviour and thought processes into three to four groups. Attention was paid to see that none of the beliefs, customs of each caste were affected or troubled in any way. Every caste clings to its beliefs or traditions and customs. They do not their customs or beliefs affected. Every caste likes to breathe in an atmosphere of its own. In the class system laid down by the vedic rishis and sages most of the castes are included any yet no caste is affected in any way. Every caste becomes a member of a big family.

Scholars believe that the social goal of the class system is to unite human race. Actually caste system was founded keeping in mind the factual diversity and ideal unity.

The class system consists of 4 parts:
1. Cultural and spiritual class (Brahmin)
2. Soldier and politicians class (Kshatriya).
3. Trader (Vaishya)
4. Workman (Shudra)

Every group or class has to independently follow its own set of rules without the interference of others. The purity of a teacher (Guru), the courage of the soldier, the honesty of traders and the bravery and strength of the workman and also their craftsmanship contribute at large to the progress of the social structure but still is complete in its own sense. In Radhakrishnan's words: The support of the social system should be spiritual independence, political similarity and financial friendship. According to Radhakumud Mukherjee : Social unity was based on the caste system, which can be said to be definition of the vast and complicated Hindu religion (Hindu Samyata).

Vedic Settlement: The culture, social structure of the Aryans was the same everywhere inspite of they living in different parts, different atmospheres and situations of the country. The geographical distances did not become a barrier. From Regveda it is known that the Aryans of the region of Seven Rivers lived in separate groups, but they were not different from each other. Their behaviour, customs, thoughts were all the same. According to (Rigveda 3, 37, 9) the groups or castes were five in number. The mention of these five groups Panchajat is found in many places like (Rigveda 1,7,9: 2,2,10:5,86,2:8,9,2:9,19,1/9:). In some cases the Gods have also been included in the Panchajata. The Panchajata describes the settlement of humans on the banks of river Saraswati. In Rigveda we find the caste system, the father-son inheritance in Brahmins and Kshatriya and also there are references of three and four classes. (8,35,16,18-Purushasukta).

In Rigveda some stanzas have been written by sage Vishwamitra, taiteriya Brahmins have called them Kshatriya. There is no single reference in vedic literature of a Vaishya becoming a teacher, purohit or a king after a Brahmin or a Kshatriya. The first two classes were always close to each other.

Tag Names : Rugveda,Ved,Taittariya Bramhan
Other articles of this author :
1 Agriculture Method in Vedic Age
2 The nature of vedas and the description of the word Independence in it
3 The Vedic principles of Ravindranath Aspect
4 THE DEVELOPMENT OF INDIAN EDUCATION SYSTEM IN THE VEDIC PERIOD
5 Yayavari Transport in Vedic period
6 Vedon Ka Swarup Or Usame Swaraj Ka Varnan
7 Vaidic Kal Me Bharat Ki Shiksha Pranali Ka Vikas
8 Vedkalin Yayavari
9 Vaidic Philosophy Of Dev Tatva
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