Whats the truth behind the caste system in India?
Disclaimer; this article uses images and slides that are other’s views and not mine. They reflect the general sentiment of social phenomena from widely varying sources, well informed as well as ill informed.
Its also a general tendency in the west to denigrate others culture, to showcase a superiority of one’s own. I have eg observed nasty forms of caste feelings in the USA itself. They are not necessarily transcedental to every facet of today’s modern lives.
But nevertheless in ancient times caste and racism were much widely prevalent and an acceptable format. In the present day India there is no necessary acceptance of the caste evil by everyone alike, but are widely politically leveraged for various reasons. eg the quota or reservation system does its evil to propagate ill feeling among castes that are prevented to access the political privileges conferred upon lower castes, in the name of historical exploitation.
Some of my linguistic analyses, point to the idea, that, after-all, the so called 4-divisions of Indian society, over the millennium, called as a caste system, was neither necessarily a caste nor an overtly religious institution, but a simple observation, of what major sections of society existed.
In fact such a system was far less contrived, than is supposed and propagated today for political and social gains. This is basically a social-religious-political ploy to exploit the innocence of the system and is equally propagated by vicious forces in West and India itself.
In fact most of it is also to be found in other Asiatic countries in exact or similar forms and four – divisions was an order of the day in a vast continental scope rather than just the present day India.
The caste laws
Indonesia and Japan had their divisions mostly akin to or same as that of India’s. Here is the meaning of such a caste division in India, as per my etymological observations. One can swap the order since its an observation rather than any dictum.
kshyatria: most likely comes from kshetra which means land or region or kingdom, nation, jurisdiction. Hence kshatriya class is associated with defense, wars and the likes, protection and ryal power etc.
braahmana = the bruha+maanya which means most honorable or greatly honorable ( or by using the phonetic bara + manya; accepted by heart, gentle, friendly, honorable, respectable, scholarly, worldly, cognates with manyabara ) even monoyabaraka ( this later is Japanese which has the exact same meaning as manyabara, interesting?)
subramanya ( sarba+manya ? )
vaishya, baishya; masters, skillful artisans, businessmen, entrepreneurs, experts — comes from bash = to occupy, to control, to skillfully master an occupation or profession. — therefore implies mixing of religious assignments with such professions. Also note the word for business: byabasaya ( or vernacular Odia: beusa which is an apabharnsha of the same) phonetically connects well with Vaishya, the supposed business caste.
Shudra might simply have been or kshudra; minute, subtle as well as negligible or unimportant.
So its just the observed economic sections, which may or may not have relations with other sections. But since there is always mixing of religious ideals of a society, it makes them stick to various sections, eg braahmana to kshyatriya and shudra to ksyatria and vaishya and so on. 4-sections or divisions of castes are not exclusive, there could be more but they can be easily classified into 4 or less.
This then through intercultural and trade relations over 1000s of years goes into other continental societies and even comes back mixed and sometimes subverted. It seems quite possible given how civilization wise other things have moved from one part to another including religion itself.