The family is like a lamb or cow you could easily slaughter. If we do not, at least among Hindus, Zoroastrians, Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists, it is because they give us more while they are alive, healthy and strong.
People in other cultures constantly invoke individual rights to disown and deny, and walk away from the cohesive ambit of their respective families. Also, parent’s make a life in togetherness difficult by attaching conditions; and marraiges today, with or without pre-nuptial agreements, already envisage a separation sooner or later. As a result, families keep getting dysfunctional all the time and are destroyed within the span of a few generations.
But the family is the closest and the most immediately natural group, of which we are a part.
In popular belief they are supposed to be the descendants of some deported Greek soldiers of Alexander, yet some trace roots of their existence deep into Hindu mythology. Their ancestral roots may be debatable but their democratic setup, with participatory court procedure, is similar to that of ancient Greece.
And they have been producing some very good quality hashish. Blessed by Lord Shiva, good quality cannabis plant grows in abundance there. For ages the use of cannabis has been an integral part of their lives, from medicine to footwear. But in the past they had never traded it; neither did they know the value of it. Their only trade with the outside world had been in wool, sheared off their herds of sheep.
Text Source : http://www.aheadofdemocracy.com/story-of-malana.html
A remote primitive little village in the Himalayas, Malana was isolated from the outside civilization for thousands of years. It was never invaded or ruled by an external administration. The people there had been living in harmony with nature, an innocent pure existence with their own language, their own world, their own democracy. Their people’s republic has been governed by a village council with an upper house and a lower house like the bicameral assemblies of our parliament. The council members are chosen by the village folk through a process of unanimous selection – not an election! Their court has been resolving all their internal disputes. No manipulation, no favoritism, in the presence of their God. All decisions have been unanimous; every individual’s opinion is considered – unlike the present form of democracy that leads to dictatorship of the majority. And the secret…
In practice, democracy is not the ideal system of governance. It is just the most acceptable to mainstream people of a nation state. What would be ideal ? Communism; even organised religions have visions of what could be regarded as best or ideal for its believers.
The sooner we appreciate the fact, the better placed we shall be at accepting its limitations and conspicuous failures. The system itself most reflects the people who chose it over others. They are not ideal; their best are not ideally placed to contribute the most to the system.
On one hand, democracy trumps its critics by its overwhelming acceptability among the populace and, on the other, it discharges itself clean by reflecting all responsibility for it performance back to people. That is where and how matters stand, take it or leave it.
People who chose such a see through system of governance are stuck with it. They will never be able to de-select it and they can never have any hope from it except through themselves becoming better : becoming more capable, more responsible and more accountable to themselves. It is what people most severely lack; it also what a democratic system is most poor at : fixing responsibility and accountability.
“Though applicable to the same contextual matrix, terror is felt by individuals, in their own distinctive ways, while war is business of communities or nations for or against aggression. The attackers could be charged up against an offensive presence to rail against, a long-term threat to be destroyed, or something valueable to rob and take away. The animal urge could easily deflate with the sense of consequences about to be unleashed. But beastial vitality is not concerned with moral and ethical choices, and is hence without the sense of responsibility for rushing headlong to death and destruction, terror and war.”
There is a constant war both within and without us, The one within is physiological, mental or spiritual; the one out there, between people, is bloody. The latter may involve passion of the whoever first declares or strikes, as a cry for justice to redress a wrong terribly perceived. Equally, a war could be the result of cold calculation either in continuity with a history between feuding parties or with an eye on advantages or spoils the aggressor expects to win.
In all cases, those pushed to defending themselves have no choice when swords begin to fall and the guns start booming : the aggression must be fought against, peaceniks and political correctness be damned. Unless one is a coward to his community or a traitor to his nation. The Gandhian or Christian romance – “absoluteness” as the author of The Rebel terms – is not even relevant to the…
“…I should stress that Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī does not call himself Aśoka in any of the major rock edicts that mention the Greek kings. Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī Aśoka appears on the minor rock inscriptions, which do not mention the Greek kings. The identification of Aśoka Maurya as the Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī of major rock edicts and contemporary of Greek kings is based on the assumption that nobody other than Aśoka Maurya could use the title of Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī. This is obviously not true as shown by various examples in this article.
“Also, Aśoka Maurya could not be the Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī of major rock edicts because he can only be contemporary of Antiochus II as the grandson of Chandragupta Maurya and there was no contact with India during the time of Antiochus II. As the great grandson of Chandragupta I, Kumāragupta-I can be contemporary of Antiochus III, who had come to the borderlands of India during a military campaign and received gifts from an Indian king named Sophagasenos.
“Finally, there is no independent evidence for Aśoka Maurya attacking Kalinga, the most important event in the life of Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī of major rock edicts, while there is explicit evidence for Kumāragupta-I to have attacked Kalinga.
“The identifications of Sandrokottos with Chandragupta-I and Devānāmpriya Priyadarśī with Kumāragupta-I, both of the Imperial Gupta dynasty, provide us the opportunity to reconstruct the history of India that better represents the evidence and is more faithful to the native traditions of India. In this chronological reconstruction we have a historical Vikramāditya, the greatest hero of ancient India, whose death in 57 BCE is commemorated by starting the Vikrama era in 57 BCE. We also have Gautamīputra Śātakarṇi crushing Śakas in 78 CE which is celebrated by starting the Śaka era in 78 CE.
“Currently foreigners are given credit for instituting both of these important Indian eras by historians whose hearts are full of love for invaders and who specialize in making a mockery of our traditions.”
The Hittite city of Hattusas, that Texier ‘discovered’, took another nearly 100 years to start disgorging its secrets to modern archaeologists. The name of the Hittite city, Hattusas, is itself possibly derived from the Sanskrit word, hutashan, हुताशनmeaning “sacred sacrificial fire.”
Guarded by weathered stone lions, very similar to Ashoka Pillar lions, the city of Hattusas, became a cause for much politicking.
Related to Boghazkoy tablets were some of the tablets found at Tell-el-Armana, by Flinders Petrie in 1891-1892. The decipherment of the Tell-el-Amarna letters, by JA Knudtzon, in 1901, linked the few earlier tablets found at Boghazkoi-Hattusas. By French archaeologist JA Ernest Chantre in 1893-94, who was
the first in a long line of archaeologists to dig at the ancient site in the 1890s, starting with the hill top compound. His exclusive interest in tablets, unfortunately, led him to destroy everything else he uncovered.
What Makridi Bey and Winckler found, were some 10,000 clay tablets. 10,000 tablets, which no one in the world could read.
discovery was based on this short sentence written in cuneiform: NU NINDA-AN EZZATENI,WATAR-MA EKUTENI .
Since many Babylonian words were included in Hittite texts, the clue was provided by the Babylonian word ninda, which means “food” or “bread.” Hrozný asked himself a very simple question: What does one do with food or bread? The answer, of course, was, one eats it. So the word ezzateni must be related to eating.
The publication in 1922 of these tablets showed, in one case, a call to Indra, Varuna, Mitra and Nastya to witness a treaty between the Hittite king Suppiluliuma and Shattiwaza, a Mitanni. Gods that only people in India worshipped.
So, how did Vedic gods land up in Turkey, some 3500 years ago?
A deserter’s tale
Back in India, a British ‘soldier-of-fortune’ working with the English East India Company, during 1833-1838, was making his way into various parts of India. On one such trip, after,
A long march preceded our arrival at Haripah, through jangal of the closest description. East of the village was an abundance of luxuriant grass … in front of the village … (a) ruinous brick castle. Behind us was a large circular mound, or eminence, and to the west was an irregular rocky height, crowned with remains of buildings, in fragments of walls, with niches, after the eastern manner. The entire neighbourhood is embellished with numerous pipal trees, some of them in the last stage of lingering existence; bespeaking a great antiquity, when we remember their longevity. The walls and towers of the castle are remarkably high, though, from having been long deserted, they exhibit in some parts the ravages of time and decay. Between our camp and it extended a deep trench, now overgrown with grass and plants. Tradition affirms the existence here of a city, so considerable that it extended to Chicha Watni, thirteen cosses distant, and that it was destroyed by a particular visitation of Providence, brought down by the lust and crimes of the sovereign. (from “Narrative of various journeys in Balochistan, Afghanistan by Charles Masson”; underlined text in parenthesis supplied).
During his travels, over North and North West India, he “bought numerous ornaments, gems and coins in Kabul bazaar and amassed an estimated 60,000 coins, gems, seals, rings and other, mostly bronze, surface finds from the urban site of Begram north of Kabul.”
This travelogue, published in 1842, is the first known Western citing of Harappa.
The 1931 issue of Illustrated London News – Great New Discoveries of Ancient Indian Culture on a Virgin Prehistoric Site in Sind – further results of pioneer research at Chanu-Daro, in the Indus Valley: relics of craftsmanship, domestic life, and personal adornment in the third millennium B.C. by Ernest Mackay D. Litt, FSA, in 5 x photos of seals and seal amulets with animal designs.
Very little was published or studied, even though, Cunningham, Auriel Stein, DR Bhandarkar, Harold Hargreaves, were aware of Harappa and Mohenjo-daro sites.
All quiet on the Western front! Why?
After 80 years, (1845-1924) of inaction, silence and denial, suddenly the British Raj ‘decided’ to put these ruins to some ‘good use’.
John Marshall, Director of Archaeological Survey Of India (ASI), a Lord Curzon-appointee, was despatched to Harappa and Mohenjodaro, in 1925, (his first visit!).
Despite being in India, and in ASI from 1902, Marshall’s first visitto Harappa and Mohenjodaro was in 1925. Based on his ‘insights’ and ‘intuition’ Marshall started writing an ‘authoritative’ book on the “Indus Valley Civilization”.
What was behind this decision?
During 1800-1900, various excavations, in the Levant (Turkey, Syria, Palestine, Mesopotamia et al) Western archaeologists dug up more than 400,000 clay tablets. Showing an ‘Aryan’ linkage, pointing to India – peaking with the Boghazkoi decipherment. ‘Modern’ history does not
appreciate the colossal scale of their discoveries, decipherments, and specialized studies, and the effect of this new material in opening up the ancient Orient to European view in the period between 1880 and 1914. As scholars ransacked a vast quantity of new textual and archaeological documents, they discovered the powerful influence of Zoroastrian Persia, the esoteric depths of ancient India, and the primeval innovations of the Assyrians and Sumerians. These new cultures, appealing in their antiquity, spirituality, and apparent purity, made the well-known “orientals”—especially the ancient Israelites and Egyptians—seem derivative, corrupt, and banal …
The timing of the Indus Valley announcement, coincided with the publication of deciphered Boghaz-koi and the Amarna tablets between 1920-1925. When Indus Valley announcement was made, world historical narratives were at a delicate stage. Hegel-Marx-Muller’s historiography of ‘Aryan Invasion’ of India was hanging by a thin thread.
From the Illustrated London News – A “Sheffield of Ancient India: Chanhu-Daro’s Metal Working Industry 10 x photos of copper knives, spears , razors, axes and dishes (Click for larer picture).
After WW1, with Germany defeated and Turkey dismembered, classification and announcement of the ‘Indus Valley Civilization’ (IVC) swiftly followed with a publication in Illustrated London News, in September-October 4th, 1924. John Marshall, (Director, ASI, 1922-1927), made his first visit to Harappa-Mohenjo daro the next year, in 1925. He ‘recorded’ his excavations and investigations, in a 3-volume book.
Marshall’s tale of ‘Dravidian’ cities (Harappa /Mohenjo-daro) destroyed by ‘Aryan invaders’, has survived for nearly a 100 years. ‘Aryans’ a Western invention, viewed through a prism of Euro-centric, colonial ideology of the 1920’s, have no basis in history or archaeology. There never was an Aryan race. On the other hands, the Aryan-Dravidian ‘divide’ were obvious colonial attempts to divert attention – and to draw attention away from the Indian connection with Boghazkoi decipherments.
And the story does not end here!
Bigger than WW2
In the dying days of the Raj, came more insidious history. At the apex of WW2, Britain pulled out a general from the Italian theatre of war and sent him to India – to head colonial India archaeological operations at ASI.
One evening in early August 1943, Brigadier General Mortimer Wheeler was resting in his tent after a long day of poring over maps, drawing up plans for invasion of Sicily. Mortimer Wheeler was invited to become the director general of archaeology by the India Office of the British government in its last years of rule in South Asia … Summoning a general from the battlefields of Europe was an extraordinary measure, an admission both of the desperate condition of Indian archaeology and an acknowledgment of its vital importance. (from The Strides of Vishnu: Hindu Culture … – Google Books; ellipsis, underlined text in parenthesis supplied).
Why would the glorious British Empire, on which the sun never set, struggling for its very existence, in the middle of WW2, suddenly pull a general back from the battlefield – and put him into archaeology! That too, Indian archaeology. Not Egyptian, not Greek!
One writer explains how one of Wheeler’s“main objectives was training the rising generation of Indian archaeologists in the field methods that he had perfected …” Oozing with the milk of human kindness, aren’t we? Especially, in the middle of WW II! When it was clear, that the British would be ‘departing’ from India – sooner than later.
Just why did the world’s foremost imperial power, struggling for its very existence, put a general on to the job of digging dirt.
Dirty brown Indian dirt!
Nejstarší dějiny Přední Asie a Indie Bedřich Hrozný – The oldest history of Near Asia and India
Aryan /Indian history becomes fashionable
At the start of twentieth century, there were swarms of people wanting to study Aryan/Indian history. Along with cultural dacoits like Augustine Waddell, Auriel Stein, there were the more academic types who wrote a book on India and ‘Near East’ – Nejstarší dějinyPřední Asie a Indie by Bedřich Hrozný.
By the 1920’s under a deluge of archaeological evidence, it appeared that Indian history would run away from its rulers – the British Colonial Raj.
Usurping Aryan Achievements
While Britain and the France, for colonial reasons, were ‘discovering’ the Greek miracle, Germany and the USA started ‘discovering the ‘Aryan’ roots’ to Western civilization.
Martin Bernal, the author of ‘Black Athena” trilogy analyzes Western “amnesia” towards African contribution to Western culture. His thesis traces this ‘amnesia’ to the replacement of Europe’s “Ancient Model” (Egypt-Greece-Rome model) of historiography with the “Aryan” (India-Mesopotamia-Babylon-Assyria) model.
Simply speaking, the West replaced Egypt as the source of culture with the Aryans. Fact is, neither the cultural achievements of Egypt (from Africa) nor of the Aryan (from India) are for the West to arrogate to themselves.
“The Aryan industry, of course, burgeoned. Even the former Kaiser Wilhelm II, in exile, took up the study of the Orient … In a 1928 letter to his friend, the former emperor reported a recent conversation with Oswald Spengler in which Wilhelm had tried his best to convince the herald of Western doom that “we are orientals [Morgenländer], and not westerners [Abendländer].” (Bold letters, italics, ellipsis mine).
With Germany and America on the Aryan train, Britain was hard pressed to control Indian historiography. ‘Fresh’ evidence was needed to show ‘Aryan’ invasion. Indus Valley civilization provided that opportunity.
And after Hitler and WW II, USA no longer supported the ‘Aryan’model.
The ‘Great’ Game
At the dawn of 19th century, European empires, found themselves with barren cultural cupboards. World powers in their own right, with millions of slaves from Africa, after‘successful’ genocides in Americas, swollen by hubris and military power, across Asia these European powers controlled capital flows across the world. For these empires, archaeology, became a ‘playing’ ground for extending intra-European ‘coopetition’ (a hackneyed business term, made up of cooperation and competition).
For Germany, the charge into archaeology, was a “national competition and a less belligerent realm for expression of resentment at Germany’s late leap into colonial activity.” And these rivalries had a telling effect.
Britons and Frenchmen almost monopolized Egyptian excavation in the 1880s and the 1890’s, but then Germans, Americans, and Italians came in. The turning point came in 1905-1907 with a rush of American expeditions and the founding of the German Archaeological Institute … In Istanbul and its Fertile Crescent provinces, German activity in the army and railroad building spilled over into archaeology. The director of Istanbul’s antiquities service and museum in the 1870s had been a German. German excavations at Pergammon in 1878 and later at Babylon and later at the Hittite capital of Boghazkoi fanned Frenchmen’s uneasiness …
World War I aborted this promising beginning. German property in Egypt was sequestered. After the war, the dispute over Borchardt’s quiet export of the bust of Nefertiti to Berlin flared up. The Eyptians refused to allow German excavation or reopening of the German Archaeological Institute till 1929, when Herman Junker replaced the embittered Borchardt … he clung to his post until 1939 despite British accusations that he worked for the Nazis. (From Whose pharaohs?: archaeology, museums, and Egyptian national identity from … By Donald Malcolm Reid, pages 196-198; ellipsis, underlined text in parenthesis supplied.).
After the founding of the Reich in 1871, archaeology became a national enterprise. The IfAK was taken over by the state, and eventually formed the basis of today’s Deutsches-Archaeologisches Institut. Rivalry with France and Britain extended to the scholarly realm, and resulted in governmental support for large-scale excavations by Ernst Robert Curtius at Olympia (1875-81), Carl Humann at Pergamon (1878-86), and eventually Robert Koldewy at Babylon (1898-1914) and Walter Andrae at Assur (1903-1914) in Ottoman Mesopotamia. Wilhelm II was a particularly enthusiastic promoter of archaeology (pp. 192-199) …
Archaeology abroad grew ever more dependent on the diplomatic and financial support of the Reich for massive long-term projects … German prehistorians of the early-twentieth century also maintained that their countrymen represented the purest modern descendants of the ancient Aryans. Thus they contributed to the witches’ brew that would make up Nazi racist ideology
The most famous example of this intelligence work was that of TE Lawrence and Leonard Woolley who were excavating at Carchemish in Syria prior to World War I. Their archaeological endeavours seem to have been secondary and perhaps even a cover for more covert activities.
Competition from Germany was especially very galling for the Anglo-French archaeologists and historians. Hollywood’s portrayals of the ‘German archaeologist’, even today are proof of this. Hollywood could not keep its hand off such a juicy set of characters and incidents.
To this odd and motley crowd of British, French, German and Italian archaeologists, add a character like Sheikh Hamoudi, and you have all the characters needed for a Hollywood potboiler – the Indiana Jones series.
German archaeologists became cannon fodder to build a Hollywood caricature as a villain – as Indiana Jones’ protagonist.
Three rings for elven kings …
The history of Indus-Saraswati basin sites is full of false starts – and some of these are false beginnings persist to this date.
excavating northwest India’s “forgotten cities”, historians and archaeologists had to break free from received ways of imagining the past. Cunningham, for instance, based his investigation on Hsuan Tsang’s accounts, using them to identify monasteries and stupas in the course of his surveys. Masson made his way with Alexander the Great’s 326 BC route in mind. Harappa demanded a different grid.(from On the Road to Harappa, Indian Express, Posted: Aug 14, 2005 at 0000 hrs IST).
And that different grid is something that Western historians (and their Indian and Western followers) are finding difficult to work with. The usual theory trotted out is that
The discovery of Harappa revised, in one stroke, existing theories of ancient Indian history. Until then, the earliest known Indians were believed to be the literate Hindus who lived by the Rig Veda in the Second millennium BC. Modern Hindus trace their origins to this “Vedic civilisation”, whose language and religion were considered wholly indigenous to the subcontinent. The existence of a separate pattern of settlement, an advanced civilisation predating the Vedic era by a few hundred years, raised confusing – and politically charged – questions. If the Indus Valley peoples were not Hindus, who were they? And where, then, did the Hindus come from?
This seemingly coherent scenario actually smuggles in some very potent and smooth pseudo-concepts – the concept of Hindus, Vedic and Aryans.
MS in Sanskrit on palm-leaf, Bihar or Nepal, 11th c., 32 ff., 5×31 cm, 2 columns, (3×27 cm), 5 lines in an early Bhujimmol script, borders marked with double lines with orange pigmentation between lines, 1 miniature in text.
Second is the Vedic age. There never was a Vedic age. Not in the sense that Western historiographers slot and exclude various developments. This presupposes linear, directional, phased, and centralized development of the Vedas. Assuming a command and control system, it has a non-empirical base.
For instance, this assumes that the Vedic age was dedicated to the Vedas – and all other texts developed after that.
Fact is that the Vedas depend on the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh; along with the Devatas and Asuras. The structure of the Devas, Asuras, Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh can really be understood through the Upanishads, the epics and the Puranas. And we have not even begun on development of an ‘artificial’ language like Sanskrit (as opposed to Prakrit).
Pauranik structures, Upanishadic debates, technical compendiums, the twin epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata were parallel developments and coeval – albeit at different stages of evolution, pace and direction.
While other cultures struggle with low or high double digits of ancient texts, India has lakhs of them. This vast body of textual creation, has not happened anywhere else in the ancient world. The very assumption that it happened in India, in a matter of a few centuries – while the Aryans, Greeks, Persians, Scythians, Tocharians, Huns, were conquering India.
During these ‘invasions’, the conquerors were kind enough to leave Indian seers, sages, munis and rishis alone so that they could carry on with the composition of these texts. Massacring the males, raping the women and enslaving the rest, in the meanwhile continued in the parallel. And after these massacres and conversions, these invaders were of course kind enough to convert to an Indian way of life – and melt away from the centre stage of Indian history. These attempts to phase Indian culture are artificial and unproductive. Simply a caricature of history.
The third fallacy of this dating logic is the ‘Aryan’ culture. Especially, as opposed to Dravidian culture. There was no Aryan race, religion, language, armies, conquests, invasions, rulers or other such markers. The only significant markers for the Aryans were values – especially in relation to slavery. Aryan values would not allow believers to enslave or be enslaved. Slavery was an asuric construct– which Aryan values opposed and sought to end. And all regions that abolished slavery became Aryavart.
And with these three pseudo-concepts, ‘modern’ historians mangle Indian history.
Same blunt tools
After WW1, with Germany and America on the Aryan train, Britain (and by extension, the West) was hard pressed to control Indian historiography. To show ‘Aryan’ invasion, ‘fresh’ evidence was needed. Indus Valley civilization provided that opportunity.
Before leaving India, Britain gave one, last twist, to the ‘Aryan invasion’ knife, sticking out of the Indian history side. And Mortimer Wheeler was that last twist in the Indian side by the departing British rulers.
And HARP is the proxy knife which is being used – for the same reasons, with same blunt tools, but with lesser effects.
It is more nearly possible, however, for the public to enlighten itself; indeed, if it is only given freedom, enlightenment is almost inevitable. There will always be a few independent thinkers, even among the self-appointed guardians of the multitude. Once such men have thrown off the yoke of nonage, they will spread about them the spirit of a reasonable appreciation of man’s value and of his duty to think for himself.
It is especially to be noted that the public which was earlier brought under the yoke by these men afterwards forces these very guardians to remain in submission, if it is so incited by some of its guardians who are themselves incapable of any enlightenment. That shows how pernicious it is to implant prejudices: they will eventually revenge themselves upon their authors or their authors’ descendants. Therefore, a public can achieve enlightenment only slowly. A revolution may bring about the end of a personal despotism or of avaricious tyrannical oppression, but never a true reform of modes of thought. New prejudices will serve, in place of the old, as guide lines for the unthinking multitude.
This enlightenment requires nothing but freedom–and the most innocent of all that may be called “freedom”: freedom to make public use of one’s reason in all matters. Now I hear the cry from all sides : “Do not argue!”
The officer says: “Do not argue–drill!”
The tax collector: “Do not argue–pay!”
The pastor: “Do not argue–believe!”
Only one ruler in the world says: “Argue as much as you please, but obey!” We find restrictions on freedom everywhere. But which restriction is harmful to enlightenment? Which restriction is innocent, and which advances enlightenment? I reply: the public use of one’s reason must be free at all times, and this alone can bring enlightenment to mankind.
Will those who hold anti encumbancy sentiments against Modi or BJP or wax eloquent on left-liberal placard values and “save democracy” concerns, or have laid back support for gentlemen economist Manmohan Singh and that RBI star rocker governor RRR, explain this 27% fall in the value of ₹ between May and August in 2013 ?
You will be hopping mad with anger if you have a hang of its huge effects on the country’s foriegn currency debt and its repayments and surge in our balance of payments costs ? It was a crisis proper that caused the national economy to be categorised among the “fragile five.” And, it boosted the ₹ value of dollar money stashed abroad without criminals having to even move their little fingers !
It is one conspired event, amongst many perpetrated by corrupt non-BJP politicians in power, in which India and its people lost heavily and looters, antinationals and criminal tax evaders gained windfalls.
I recently read the views of some very “bhadralok” IITians who, true to their antecedents as slaves and sycophants to successive rulers — British, Congis, Commies and now terror embracing Didi, opining glibly in their talk shop and running down the current NDA Govt mostly in secularism and pluralism terms and in their felt notions of faux economic performance. Their unawareness was appalling and their shallow views shamed me no end. But I am know they are not the only unsuspecting wise men in the country who have little understanding of how multipronged Break-India programs are working 24/7 around them in various guises : economic, political, academic, media, secularist, leftist, feminist, freedom nazis, et al.
For me, quite frankly, the illiterate man in the street who votes BJP into power is a better, more valuable countryman that all these educated morons glutted on their little monies and puny status, good food and drinks, and their parochial thought world.
I wish we all asked the all-important question :
“Who will protect the nation’s wealth and relentlessly further our people’s interests ?”
BJP-led NDA coalition is the only answer, as of now.
Remembering experiences in our history, of the sword of #Islam and the noose of Christian clan, whatever else be their name or hue…is the sombre duty of the mainstream people of India. There is no other way for the modern day Indian to understand the miraculous survival of the Hindu way of life, while their land was occupied by barbarian flag bearers of Islam for centuries, a hundred years of equally humiliating and torturous treatment under Portuguese rulers that early backed the Inquisition regime in territorial pockets along the west coast of the subcontinent, and two centuries of British colonial sway that brought in hordes of Christian missionaries, career priests and Church officials, to shoulder the “white man’s burden” in these parts and convert the natives to Biblical narratives and English education.
There are hundreds of individuals in every region of this sub Himalayan landmass who stood up against these attempts at stripping the native populations of their spiritual roots and cultural heritage, some of whom won and reflected their glory back upon the people and others who shone brilliantly in their defeat to set examples for others to keep courage and remain steadfast : Vijaynagar founders Travancore kings in South, the Chandels of Central India, leaders of the Bhakti movement, warring chiefs of Gujarat and Rajasthan provinces, tribal chieftains of hills in North, East and North-East India, the chaste women braves of Malwa and Mewar, the unyielding Maharana Pratap, assertive Sikh Gurus and the last two in particular, clever Shivaji Maharaj and his Maratha heirs, the wily Chhatrasaal, numerous rebels and heroes of 1857 uprising, Swami Dayanand and Vivekananda, scores of freedom fighters on Indian soil such as Tilak and Sri Aurobindo, many others who rallied abroad, several dozens of revolutionaries like Azad and Bhagat Singh, Kshudiram and Subhas Bose, and hundreds of thousand of local leaders of men who opposed the coercive aliens, refused to give in or give up, and finally reclaimed their right to live their ways of life in a free nation.
Here is a less well known instance of Hindu resistance that seems stupendous today, comparable to how Guru Teg Bahadur faced the same tyrant and met his end with towering conviction :
To sum up the whole study of the Indo-European homeland :
The evidence of archaeology completely disproves, or, at the very least, completely fails to prove, the non-Indian origin of the Indo-Europeans.
The evidence of the oldest literary records ( the Rigveda and the Avesta ) proves the Indian homeland theory from three distinct angles :
a. The evidence of comparative mythology.
b. The evidence of internal chronology and geography of Rig Veda.
c. The direct evidence in the Rigveda about the emigration of identifiable Indo-European groups from India.
The evidence of linguistics in some aspects is either ambiguous or neutral and, in some others, definitely confirms the evidence of the literary records that indicate India as original homeland of Proto Indo-Europeans.
It is of course natural that entrenched scholarship, both in India and in the West, will find it hard to swallow all this evidence and conclusions that inevitably and inexorably arise from it. It would especially gall such scholars who have spent all their lives in ridiculing and rejecting the Indian homeland theory, establishing or corroborating the theory of Aryan invasion and mass migration into India.
The body of experts with western pedigree in their scholarship find it particularly hard to swallow if the convincing analyses and proof of an alternate thesis, contrary to theirs, is presented by an Indian – who they very conveniently declare and dismiss as “Indian chauvinist” or “Hindu fundamentalist”.
Indian history is over twenty millennia old. The subcontinent was relatively more populous even then, with very many pockets of closed and partially open communities spread all across, living in the diversity of their respective language and societal ways. Over the time span however, there were periods of great intermingling of populations between north and south, central and far north, central and west, central and east, east and farther east, and an umbrella mainstream way emerged. It came to be known as the Vedic way and regarded by all as the Sanatan Dharma ( Eternal Way).
Within the mainstream, a community’s erstwhile ways got modified, values and beliefs were reconstituted, but they each remained as a group with a certain marked recognition of their respective value as a people, by the functions they were good at, their skills and aptitude, by their collective readiness to adopt and ability to adapt to the ways of the mainstream.
That recognition which each community and individual was accorded had a well known basis that described the kind of the community and the individual, compared with the those who were widely adjudged and accepted as the best among the wider Vedic mainstream. Equally, the exceptional capacities and abilities of individuals from these diverse communities were admitted and accepted by the mainstream for it was, as apart from the community kind category they belong to.
It is not difficult to understand that firstly such recognition of community kind category would have to answer to several serial decision boxes such as : one, Vedic or Non-Vedic; two, say a 5-point distinction categorising their usefulness, value or importance to the Vedic mainstream; three, say a 5-point distinction categorising their level of understanding of and adherence to Vedic ways; and so on. Primarily, as it prevailed, the categorisation depended on answers to two upper most questions : Are these people a part of us ? Are they or can they be useful members of our community ?
Looking at caste with colonial glasses makes one overlook the more obvious aspect of Tribalism. In fact, it was British who solidified tribal caste boundaries. Yes, the British initially recruited Mahars because in early decades of 19thcentury they were not in any position to choose. As we have seen, the British stopped Mahar recruitment by 1892 and preferred “handsome high caste men” in army. Introduction of postal services dealt a blow to traditional jobs of Mahars as “messengers”. Thus like many other low castes, Mahars had to migrate to urban centres of British India. In this environment, they became low paid labourers in their traditional professions. The recruitment to menial jobs were done on basis of caste and caste divisions were reinforced like never before
In colonial hospitals and medical colleges, many of the north Indian funerary specialists, known as Doms, were employed as mortuary attendants and dissecting-room assistants. In textile production too, mill hands were often from the groups which had come to be identified as ‘impure’ or unclean. Far from the fluid, open-ended labour and tenancy relationships in rural environments of Peshwa’s Maharashtra, the Dalits became subject to caste conventions like never before in towns of British India.
Thus, we agree with Indologist Susan Bayly when she says that untouchability, as it has now come to mean, is largely a product of British colonialism. Untouchability as we now know it is thus very largely a product of colonial modernity, taking shape against a background of new economic opportunities including recruitment to the mills, docks and Public Works Departments, and to the labour corps which supported both the British and sepoy regiments.
Instead of making Manu the villain and attributing every blame to his Smriti, perhaps all Hindus need to wake up and read all the texts that are painted as fountainhead of discrimination. Caste discrimination existed and exists even now in our society. This is an undeniable fact and we should all work towards eliminating it. Instead of attributing all the blame of discrimination on one Smriti and one community, we should ask how much of our inherent tribalism was responsible. We should also ask whether by blaming one community we are only rekindling the same tribalism and furthering Caste animosities.
This is what we need to be aware of, and rise against. Please make sure that this is your year of awareness. Do not allow vested interests to divide the great tradition of Sanatan. Explore. Find out for yourself if what they are demonizing is indeed wicked or simply a stick for them to beat and divide us with. Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached. We stand with Dalits in general and Mahars in particular. We are proud of their martial history and wish to remind them of their Mahabharata tradition. We caution them against forces who are bent on destroying the social fabric of our society.
We leave you with these lines from the Kathopnishad.
उत्तिष्ठत जाग्रत प्राप्य वरान्निबोधत,
क्षुरासन्न धारा निशिता दुरत्यद्दुर्गम पथ: तत् कवयो वदन्ति |
Arise! Awake! Approach the great and learn.
Like the sharp edge of a razor is that path,
so the wise say − hard to tread and difficult to cross.
Human concepts of justice is invariably associated with equality. Two thousand years after Plato’s preoccupation with the terms, these concepts caused an aggregation of human will to trigger revolutions that brought down the French monarchy, founded on divine will, and colonial governments that ruled by might and perpetuated sense of racial superiority. Over two hundred years later, in the twentieth contury, the world was pervaded by leftist and democratic movements.
Yet, despite loud prominence and dedication to these values — justice and equality — societies learned that there could be no existence without diversities of all kinds, individual and collective, natural and man-made. This learning is still incomplete; the world is still shaken by the momentum of ideological outrage.
We are still to learn to live with heroes in our midst; and people with advantages are still to learn to be just. It is happening though, globally and at a massive pace. Everywhere, people are accepting inequalities inherent to the diversity built into our existence and, at the same time, are insisting on behaviours in accord with just norms. The golden rule still holds : do not do unto others what you will not have done unto you. It is our appreciation of invalidity of its reverse that is awaited : what we like and want having done to us is not necessarily what others would like and want having done to them. An excess of justice is as bad, if not worse; an excess of equality is a totally non viable option.
The laws, framed anytime between 12000 – 8000 BC (perhaps even older, around 19,000 — 17,000 BC) at the origin of Sanatan civilisation, seem astonishingly contemporary except for contradictory portions that appear to have been appended later, perhaps after the dominance of Solar kings was on the wane and during the chaos of several rising Lunar principalities around 4000 – 3000 BC.
“But a learned man after full scrutiny with the eye of knowledge should perform his duties in accord with the intent of the revealed texts.”
The exhortation encourages due situational analysis and agreeability with values prevailing in the age.
Let us then inquire into the common unfavourable perception that the Smriti text supports casteism, inferior status of women, meat eating, etc. The book is considered by many as having a bias in favour of the upper castes and is often selectively quoted to establish that women were an inferior gender, to be chastised and put down, and that casteism was prevalent in Vedic times.
Swami Dayanand, the great Vedic scholar of the 19th Century, writes : “I believe in that part of Manu Smriti which is not interpolated (appended later) and is in accord with the Vedas.” He concludes that the Manu Smriti we read today is not as originally laid down by Swayambhu Manu, the first Chief of Humanity. As it now is, he found the text as self contradictory and against the values espoused in Vedas, and hence injudicious. He therefore rejects those prejudicial texts which advocate discrimination against populations with alleged inferior status.
Let us look up the text itself pertaining to women and the “lower” castes …
Smriti Text … On Women
3/56. Where women are honoured, there the gods are pleased; but where they are not, no sacred rite yields the desired result.
9/26. Women who bear (our) children secure many blessings (for the family and the society at large); they are worthy of worship, who suffuse (their) dwellings with prosperity; there is no difference between them and goddesses of good fortune.
2/138. Way must be made for a man in a carriage, one who is above ninety years old, who is diseased, who carries a burden, and for a woman, the learned, the king and for a bridegroom.
3/114. A person may offer food without hesitation, even before serving the guests in one’s house, to newly-married women, infants, the sick, and to pregnant women.
3/60. Where the husband is pleased with his wife and the wife with her husband, happiness will assuredly be lasting in such families.
3/62. Where the wife is radiant and happy, the whole house is heaven-like; but if she is unhappy, all will appear as hell.
3/59. Hence, men who seek (their own) welfare, should always honour women on holidays and festivals with (gifts of) ornaments, clothes and food (as desired by them).
3/55. Women must be honoured and well – adorned by their fathers, brothers, husbands and brothers-in-law, who desire (their own) welfare.
9/13. These six causes spell ruin for women : drinking (spirituous liquor), associating with wicked people, separating from their husbands, rambling abroad, sleeping (at unseasonable hours), and dwelling with other men.
3/57. Where the female relatives live in grief, the family wholly perishes soon; where they are not unhappy, the family ever prospers.
3/58. Houses perish completely, as if destroyed by magic, on which female relatives pronounce a curse, upon not being duly honoured.
9/28. Upon one’s wife alone depends the welfare of the offsprings, due and fruitful performance of religious rites, faithful service of all in the family, superior conjugal happiness and the blissful existence of our ancestors in heaven and of ourself.
4/180. Let no man quarrel with his parents, his female relatives, brothers, his son and his wife, and with his daughter and his servants.
8/389. Neither a mother nor a father, nor a wife nor a son shall be cast off; unless guilty of a crime causing loss of caste (or social status earned over one’s lifetime), he who casts them off shall be fined six hundred (panas).
9/130. A daughter, who is even (as) oneself, (such a daughter) is equal to a son; how can another (heir) take the family estate, while such (an appointed daughter who is even as oneself) lives ?
9/131. The property of the mother is the share of the unmarried daughter alone and the son of an (appointed) daughter shall take the whole estate of (his maternal grandfather) who leaves no son of his own.
9/192. But when the mother has passed away, all uterine brothers and sisters shall have equal share of their mother’s estate.
Smriti Text … On Marraige and Remarraige (Of Women)
9/176. If she be (still) a virgin or has returned (to her first husband) after leaving him, such a woman is worthy to again perform the (nuptial) ceremony with her second (or first deserted) husband.
9/90. Three years let a damsel wait, though she is marriageable; but after that time let her choose for herself a bridegroom of her choice.
9/89. (But) the maiden should rather stay in (her father’s) house until death, though marriageable, than that be given to a man without good qualities.
8/28. In like manner, care must be taken of barren women and those who have no sons, as of those whose family is extinct, of wives and widows faithful to their lords, and of women afflicted with disease.
8/29. A righteous king must punish those relatives who appropriate the property of such females during their lifetime, as is due to thieves.
3/52. But those (male) relations who, in their folly, live on their woman’s property, their beasts of burden, carriages and clothes, commit sin and will sink into hell.
8/367. But if any man through insolence forcibly contaminates a maiden, two of his fingers shall be instantly cut off and he shall pay a fine of six hundred (panas).
8/323. Men stealing from a noble family, especially women, and precious gems, deserve corporal (or capital) punishment.
8/352. Men who commit adultery with wives of others, the king shall cause to be marked by punishments which cause terror, and they shall be banished thereafter.
9/232. The king shall put to death forgers of royal edicts, those who corrupt his ministers, who slay women, infants, (learned) Brahmins, and those who serve his enemies.
9/96. Women were created to be mothers and men to be fathers; religious rites, therefore, are ordained in the Veda to be performed (by the husband) together with the wife.
4/149. She must not seek to separate herself from her father, husband, or sons; by leaving them she would make both (her own and her husband’s) families contemptible.
The British called its battles of 1857 in the Indian sub-continent, waged by native people, as “Sepoy Mutiny” or terms as dismissive, more or less : rebellion, revolt, uprising or subaltern war ( by sepoy cadres and junior officers in their own military ) ! For long now, after I came across compelling evidence of it being a far more concerted and coordinated affair, the historical lies and half-truths that continue to be taught in our schools and colleges has seemed so shocking and shameful to me. But that streaming propaganda flows unabated over the young minds to this day, despite corrections since suggested by very eminent minds and respectable historians. Why ? Are our people so naive, gullible, stupid or fast brainwashed ? Let me know …
The First War For India’s Independence : 1857
Academics have detailed the economic, socio-political and religious causes behind the war, and this essay would not recount them. What needs to be recalled is that the War was a continuation of British – Maratha hostilities that formally ended with Peshwa Bajirao II’s banishment to Bithoor, near Kanpur, but burned informally among close associates of Nanasaheb, the adopted but rightful heir to Maratha leadership. That circle included Tatya Tope and the Rani of Jhansi, leading generals behind the widespread uprising against British rule.
In January 1856, James Outram crossed the Ganges to depose the King of Oudh and take over the principality. Nana Saheb is reported to have travelled from Bithoor and met representatives of the Begum of Oudh, who was nursing her hurt and was well aware of the angst among the people against the British takeover.
Situationally, the British invincibility was proving to be a myth and the seething simmer among the native people was palpable. The colonialists had suffered very heavy losses in the 1st Afghan War (1838) in north-west, in battles waged by Santhal tribes eastern provinces, and the Crimean War in Europe. It was also exactly a hundred years after the battle of Plassey (1757) with which victory the British had gained their status to power; the timing had filled the people with the hope that the end of alien occupation was near.
The British had forged very powerful alignments with select native rulers in the country such as the Scindias in Central India, the Sikhs in North, and the Nizam in South. But they had also antagonised very many others through their policies especially framed for reneging on treaties, denying agreed upon priviledges to heirs of erstwhile ruling families and not honouring grants conferred by them. They had pretexts for annexing independent principalities and taking over smaller fiefs of elite nobles, courtiers and commanders.
On a yet wider scale, the people were extremely agitated by aggressive State policy for propagating Christianity and material reward to natives for conversion of faith. There were social and educational reforms that people resented being imposed upon. Money gathering from the smallest of farmers and traders through adhoc announcements were steep and economic depredation were putting vast numbers out of business. To sum, the vortex unleashed by the white men had disaffected the common people everywhere.
Historical Records And The Untold History
It is strange therefore that India’s post – colonial history remains a mere refurbished form of the same propagated by the British before the country’s independence. Considering the fact that the War was spread over 18 months, upto 36 in places, and involved hundreds of thousand of men, how would it have been waged as mere coincident local disruptions, without money and leadership distribution to a plan ? How does a march of millions of man – miles happen without food, horses and carts, armaments to fight with arguably the most powerful nation then on the earth ? The official account and event sketch by aquiescent historians fail to answer the questions.
At the outset, the officially stated cause triggers like greased cartridge, banishing Sati and Thuggee, abolition of female infanticide and child marriage … do not seem reason enough to start dozens of disparate armed battles against the occupiers at the same time over most of the northern half of the subcontinent. The mutinies had been going on for long but ruthlessly suppressed and completely hushed. Discontent had been brewing for several decades before the First war of Indian Independence over lack of respect shown by British officers to natives in the same army units.
I would laugh at the carricature-like chanting that priestly congregations end up with, the Surya namaskara they attempt or when they put up images of the Virgin draped in a sari. But no, it leads to real heartburns, tragic cultural rootlessness among the converts, and much social and political friction between aware “natives” and the anglo flock. That is no laughing matter.
I rather like the bio of Jesus as a rebel, a champion of just human order, and as someone who was willing to suffer for his convictions. That he could rally people on the margins with his message of unreserved love, peace and forgiveness, is remarkable, especially in those feudal times.
Then they built a religion on his blood, without a shred of truth and evidence of any understanding of what the human preceptor really might have stood for. There is a way his life could have revealed for others down the ages; but that scope was irrevocably truncated in 325 CE. But first a revealing incident from even before…
She is both amazing, like she might be from a paradisical world, and incredibly beautiful, behind the wonderful measure and simplicity of her blogposts.
Wanted to start painting again today, but don’t have any of my favorite paper, so will have to wait until the shops open again on Monday. But I’ve done a preparatory sketch, and will spend some time tomorrow sorting out the colours that I want to use…
Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, an organization created in order to prevent gun violence, announced a public service advertising campaign in 2013. It featured a series of print advertisements that portray guns alongside other so-called “harmful” objects that were banned in America with the intention of protecting children. One of the advertisements featured a banned children’s book, “Little Red Riding Hood”, and a gun that is permitted. That alone speaks volumes on the absurdity of the current gun regulation situation in America. The advertisement powerfully presents the importance of gun sense by incorporating various persuasive features such as pathos, logos, and ethos, and creating a scene that simply but surely proves to people that change is necessary.