Está en la página 1de 1

2/2/2015

CompetitiveExams:MainFeaturesofCasteSystemVarna&JatiExamrace

VarnaandJati
AccordingtotheancientHinduscriptures,therearefourvarnas.TheBhagavadGitasaysvarnasaredecidedbasedonGunaand
Karma.Manusmritiandsomeothershastrasmentionfourvarnas:TheBrahmins(teachers,scholarsandpriests),theKshatriyas(kings
andwarriors),theVaishyas(agriculturistsandtraders),andShudras(serviceprovidersandartisans).Thistheoreticalsystempostulated
VarnacategoriesasidealsandexplainedawaytherealityofthousandsofendogamousJatisactuallyprevailinginthecountryasbeing
thehistoricalproductsofintermarriageamongthepureVarnasVarnaSankara.Allthose,includingforeigners,tribalsandnomads,
whodidnotsubscribetothenormsoftheHindusocietywerecontagiousanduntouchables.Anothergroupexcludedfromthemain
societywascalledParjanyaorAntyaja.Thisgroupofformeruntouchables(selfdescribedasDalits)i.e.downtrodden,wasconsidered
eitherthelowersectionofShudrasoroutsidethecastesystemaltogether.PassagesfromscripturessuchasManusmritiindicatethat
thevarnasystemwasoriginallynonhereditary.
SeveralcriticsofHinduismstatethatthecastesystemisrootedinthevarnasystemmentionedintheancientHinduscriptures.
However,manygroups,suchasISKCON,considerthemodernIndiancastesystemandthevarnasystemastwodistinctconcepts.Many
EuropeanscholarsfromthecolonialeraregardedtheManusmritiasthelawbookoftheHindus,andthusconcludedthatthecaste
systemisapartofHinduism,anassertionthatisrejectedbymanyHinduscholars,whostatethatitisananachronisticsocialpractice,
notareligiousone.
AlthoughmanyHinduscripturescontainpassagesthatcanbeinterpretedtosanctionthecastesystem,theyalsocontainindications
thatthecastesystemisnotanessentialpartofHinduism.TheVedasplaceverylittleimportanceonthecastesystem,mentioning
casteonlyonce(inthePurushSukta)outoftensofthousandsofverses.B.R.Ambedkarbelievedthateventhisisamuchlater
interpolationandgaveevidencetosupporthisconclusion.IntheVedicperiod,therewasnoprohibitionagainsttheShudraslisteningto
theVedasorparticipatinginanyreligiousrite.
InEarlyEvidenceforCasteinSouthIndia,GeorgeL.HartstatedthattheearliestTamiltextsshowtheexistenceofwhatseems
definitelytobecaste,butwhichantedatestheBrahminsandtheHinduorthodoxyHebelievesthattheoriginsofthecastesystemcan
beseeninthebeliefsystemthatdevelopedwiththeagriculturalcivilizationandwaslaterprofoundlyinfluencedbytheBrahminsand
theBrahmanicalreligionTheseearlyTamiltextsalsooutlinetheconceptofequality.SaintValluvarhasstatedpirapokkumella
uyirkkumwhichmeansallareequalatbirthLikewise,SaintAuvaiyaarhasstatedthatthereareonlytwocastesintheworld:Those
whocontributepositivelyandthosewhocontributenegatively.Fromthese,itcanbeinferredthatthecastesystemismoreofasocio
economicclasssystem.

data:text/htmlcharset=utf8,%3Ch2%20id%3D%22VarnaandJati%22%20style%3D%22margin%3A%2010px%200px%200px%3B%20padding%3A%200px%200px%202px%3B%20verticalalign%3A%20baseline%3B%20fontsi

1/1