Friday, September 28, 2007

Cast(e) Away

Being extremely passionate about mythology and more importantly the Mahabharatha, history would be something that I would come to love naturally. Despite being a rather docile fellow myself, the gruesome tales of death depicted in the Hindu epics, are well received by me. Pondering over such moot questions are somethings I enjoy, as like an MBA would put it, it would to self realization which would lead to the path of success. Anyways, thats hamming enough for the introductory paragraph.

We have a course out here on the Indian Social System. I find the course extremely intriguing, as I gain insights as to why we Indians are what we are today. In this day of caste battles, and caste polarization, existence has come to be defined by what one is born as, and not what one yearns to be. I have come to realize that India's caste system is India's comfort zone. The more progressionist we try to be, we try to warp ourselves in this unnecessary labyrinth of castes.

Castes, created (proof required) to serve as job stratifiers, have subsumed the very religion which has given birth to it. Hinduism, that held casteism within it, is know an pejoratory reference to the existence of casteism. Castes define not just where we work, or in some cases, dont work, but also the way we think. Rural India makes castes an example for excesses that people seek or have sought. Rapes and murders are justified using this crutch that props up a man who can walk, nay run a marathon. I have read that through the ages, its Brahmins who have held the thread which makes the Indian fabric. As much as my chauvinistic inclinations dissuade me, I have begun to realize, that at some level, it possibly is true. Untouchability, which is something that I shall never come to accept as a necessary evil in my life, has been wrought on this society, by the ruling class and the Brahmins. This is quite ironic, since the concept as such never existed in ancient India.

Castes have become a bane onto our existence. Varnas alone cant define occupations or people anymore. We have differentiated our Varnas into miniscule castes that the same Varna. In days gone by, kings got their daughters married to other kingdom's princes, irrespective of what kind of Kshatriya they belong to. Such things are blasphemy in the India of today. Even the most secular or liberal individual shirks away those virtues when choosing a partner. This would only mean more chauvinism in the genearations to come.

India is growing at a pace that requires us, the Indians to contribute. That would require participation together and not be prohibitive towards individuals. Its not about discriminatory on racial or religious lines either. Its about being inclusive. Its about meritocracy. Its about representation.

And its definitely not about CASTE

NOTE: The authors views are strictly personal, and does NOT, in any manner, reflect the views of any group, institute or organization he belongs to. Any citations of part/whole of this text without this clarification shall deem to be a violation of copyright.


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