PART I Continued
FROM what has been said before, it is clear that the Brahmanic writers do not give us any clue as to who the Shudras were and how they came to be the fourth Varna. It is, therefore, necessary to turn to the Western writers and to see what they have to say about the subject. The Western writers have a definite theory about the origin of the Shudras. Though all of them are not agreed upon every aspect of the theory, there are points on which there seems to be a certain amount of unity among them. They comprise the following :
1. The people who created the Vedic literature belonged to the Aryan race.
2. This Aryan race came from outside India and invaded India.
3. The natives of India were known as Dasas and Dasyus who
4. were racially different from the Aryans. (4) The Aryans were a white race. The Dasas and Dasyus were a dark race.
5. The Aryans conquered the Dasas and Dasyus.
6. The Dasas and Dasyus after they were conquered and enslaved were called Shudras.
7. The Aryans cherished colour prejudice and therefore formed the Chaturvarnya whereby they separated the white race from the black race such as the Dasas and the Dasyus.
These are the principal elements in the Western theory about the origin and position of the Shudras in the Indo-Aryan society. Whether it is valid or not is another matter. But this much must certainly be said about it that after reading the Brahmanic theories with their long and tedious explanations attempting to treat a social fact as a divine dispensation, one cannot but feel a certain amount of relief in having before oneself a theory, which proceeds to give a natural explanation of a social fact. One can do nothing with the Brahmanic theories except to call them senseless ebullitions of a silly mind. They leave the problem as it is. With the modem theory, one is at least on the road to recover one's way.
To test the validity of the theory, the best thing to do is to examine it piece by piece and see how far each is supported by evidence.
The foundation on which the whole fabric of the theory rests is the proposition that there lived a people who were Aryan by race. It is in the fitness of things therefore to grapple with this question first. What is this Aryan race? Before we consider the question of Aryan race we must be sure as to what we mean by the word "race". It is necessary to raise this question because it is not impossible to mistake a people for a race. The best illustration of such a mistake is the Jews. Most people believe that the Jews are a race. To the naked eye, they appear to be so. But what is the verdict of the experts ? This is what Prof. Ripley*[f1] has to say about the Jews :
"Our final conclusion, then, is this: This is paradoxical yet true, we affirm. The Jews are not a race, but only a people after all. In their faces we read its confirmation; while in respect of their other traits, we are convinced that such individuality as they possessby no means inconsiderableis of their own making from one generation to the next, rather than a product of an unprecedented purity of physical descent."
What is a race? A race may be defined as a body of people possessing certain typical,traits which are hereditary. There was a time when it was believed that the traits which constitute a race are: (1) the form of the head, (2) the colour of the hair and eyes, (3) the colour of the skin, and (4) the stature. To-day the general view is that pigmentation and stature are traits, which vary according to climate and habitat, and consequently they must be ruled out as tests for determining the race of the people. The only stable trait is the shape of the human headby which is meant the general proportions of length, breadth and height and that is why anthropologists and ethnologists regard it as the best available test of race.
The use of head-forms for determining the race to which an individual belongs has been developed by anthropologists into an exact science. It is called anthropometry. This science of anthropometry has devised two ways of measuring the headform: (1) cephalic index, and (2) facial index. The index is the mark of the race.
Cephalic index is the breadth of the head above the ears expressed in percentage of its length from forehead to back. Assuming that this length is 100, the width is expressed as a fraction of it. As the head becomes proportionately broader that is more fully rounded, viewed from the top downthis cephalic index increases. When it rises above 80, the head is called brachycephalic. When it falls below 75, the term dolichocephalic is applied to it. Indexes between 75 and 80 are characterised as mesocephalic. These are technical terms. They constantly crop up in literature dealing with questions of race and if one does not know what they denote it obviously becomes very difficult to follow the discussion intelligently. It would not therefore be without advantage if I were to stop to give their popular equivalents. The popular equivalent of mesocephalic is medium-headed, having a medium cephalic Index, the breadth of the cranium being between three-fourths and four-fifths of the length. Dolichocephalic means long-headed, having a low cephalic index, the breadth of the cranium being below four-fifths of the length.
Facial index is the correlation between the proportions of the head and the form of the face. In the majority of cases, it has been found that a relatively broad head is accompanied by a rounded face, in which the breadth back of the cheek bones is considerable as compared with the height from forehead to chin. Lack of uniformity in the mode of taking measurements has so far prevented extended observations fit for exact comparison. All the same, it has been found safe to adopt the rule, long head, oval face: short-head and round face.
Applying these measures of anthropometry, Prof. Ripley, an authority on the question of race, has come to the conclusion that the European people belong to three different races in terms of cephalic and facial index. His conclusions are summarised in the table on the next page. [f2]
Is there an Aryan race in the physical sense of the term? There seem to be two views on the subject. One view is in favour of the existence of the Aryan race. According to it :[f3]
The Aryan type.. is marked by a relatively long (dolichocephalic) head; a straight finely-cut (leptorrhine) nose; a long symmetrically narrow face; well developed regular features and a high facial angle. The stature is fairly high and the general build of the figure well-proportioned and slender rather than massive.
2. Alpine (Celtic)
The other view is that of Prof. Max Muller. According to him, the word is used in three different senses. This is what he, in his lectures on the Science of Language, says :
In ar or ara, I recognise one of the oldest names of the earth, as the ploughed land, lost in Sanskrit but preserved in Greek as (era) so that Arya would have conveyed originally the meaning of landholder, cultivator of the land, while Vaishya from Vis meant householder, Ida the daughter of Manu is another name of the cultivated earth and probably a modification of Ara.
The second sense in which it was used was to convey the idea of ploughing or tilling the soil. As to this. Prof. Max Muller makes the following observations;
I can only state that the etymological signification of Arya seems to be: One who ploughs or tills. The Aryans would seem to have chosen this name for themselves as opposed to the nomadic races, the Turanians, whose original name Tura implies the swiftness of the horsemen.
In the third sense, the word was used as a general name for the Vaishyas, i.e., the general body of the people, who formed the whole mass of the people. For this, Prof. Max Muller relies on Panini (iii.l,103) for his authority. Then, there is the fourth sense, which the word got only towards the later period, in which sense it means 'of noble origin'.
What is however of particular importance is the opinion of Prof. Max Muller on the question of the Aryan race. This is what he says on the subject:[f4]
There is no Aryan race in blood; Aryan, in scientific language is utterly inapplicable to race. It means language and nothing but language; and if we speak of Aryan race at all, we should know that it means no more than... Aryan speech.
I have declared again and again that if I say Aryas, I mean neither blood nor bones, nor hair nor skull; I mean simply those who speak an Aryan language. The same applies to Hindus, Greeks, Romans, Germans, Celts, and Slavs. When I speak of them I commit myself to no anatomical characteristics. The blue-eyed and fair-haired Scandinavians may have been conquerors or conquered, they may have adopted the language of their darker lords or their subjects, or vice versa. I assert nothing beyond their language, when I call them Hindus, Greeks, Romans, Germans, Celts and Slavs; and in that sense, and in that sense only, do I say that even the blackest Hindus represent an earlier stage of Aryan speech and thought than the fairest Scandinavians. This may seem strong language, but in matters of such importance we cannot be too decided in our language. To me, an ethnologist who speaks of Aryan race, Aryan blood, Aryan eyes and hair, is as great a sinner as linguist who speaks of a dolichocephalic dictionary or a brachycephalic grammar. It is worse than a Babylonian confusion of tongues it is down-right theft. We have made our own terminology for the classification of language; let ethnologists make their own for the classification of skulls, and hair and blood.
The value of this view of Prof. Max Muller will be appreciated by those who know that he was at one time a believer in the theory of Aryan race and was largely responsible for the propagation of it.
The two views are obviously not in harmony. According to one view, the Aryan race existed in a physiological sense with typical hereditary traits with a fixed cephalic and facial index. According to Prof. Max Muller, the Aryan race existed in a philological sense, as a people speaking a common language.
In this conflict of views one may well ask: what is the testimony of the Vedic literature? As examination of the Vedic literature shows that there occur two words in the Rig Vedaone is Arya with a short 'a' and the other is Arya with a long 'a'. The word Arya with a short 'a' is used in the Rig Veda[f5] in 88 places. In what sense is it used? The word[f6] is used in four different senses; as (1) enemy, (2) respectable person, (3) name for India, and (4) owner, Vaishya or citizen.
The word Arya with a long 'a' is used in the Rig Veda in 31 places [f7]. But in none of these is the word used in the sense of race.
From the foregoing discussion, the one indisputable conclusion which follows is that the terms 'Arya' and 'Arya' which occur in the Vedas have not been used in the racial sense at all.
One may also ask: what is the evidence of anthropometry? the Aryan race is described as long-headed. This description is not enough. For as will be seen from the table given by Prof. Ripley, there are two races which are long-headed. The question which of the two is the Aryan race still remains open.
Let us take the next premisenamely, that the Aryans came from outside India, invaded India, and conquered the native tribes. It would be better to take these questions separately.
From where did the Aryan race come into India? On the question of locating the original home of the Aryan race, there is a bewildering variety of views and options. According to Benfey, the original home of the Aryan race must be determined by reference to the common vocabulary. His views on the subject have been well summarised by Prof. Isaac Taylor[f8] in the following words :
"The investigation of the vocabulary common to the whole of the Aryan languages might yield a clue to the region inhabited by the Aryans before the linguistic separation. He contended that certain animals, such as the bear and the wolf, and certain trees, such as the beech and the birch with which the primitive Aryans must have been acquainted, are all indigenous to the temperate zone, and above all, to Europe, whereas the characteristic animals and trees of Southern Asia, such as the lion, the tiger and the palm were known only to the Indians and the Iranians. He urged that the absence from the primitive Aryan vocabulary of common names for the two great Asiatic beasts of prey, the lion and the tiger, or for the chief Asiatic beast of transport, the camel, is difficult to explain on the theory of the migration of the Aryans from the region eastward of the Caspian. That the Greeks called the lion by its Semitic name, and the Indians by a name which cannot be referred to any Aryan root, argues that the lion was unknown in the common home of Greeks and Indians.
Benfey's declaration speedily bore fruit, and Geiger forthwith ranged himself in the same camp, but placing the cradle of the Aryans, not as Benfey had done in the region to the North of the Black Sea, but more to the north-west, in Central and Western Germany. Geiger's contribution to the argument was not without its value. He bases his conclusions largely on the tree names which belong to the primitive Aryan vocabulary. In addition to the fir, the willow, the ash, the alder, and the hazel, he thinks the names of the birch, the beech and the oak are specially decisive. Since the Greek (phegos) which denotes the oak is the linguistic equivalent of the Teutonic beech and of the Latin fague he draws, the conclusion that the Greeks migrated from a land of beeches to a land of oaks, transferring the name which denoted the tree with 'edible' fruit from the one tree to the other."
Another school holds that the original home of the Aryan race was in Caucasia, because the Caucasians like the Aryans are blonds, have a straight, a sharp nose and a handsome face. On this point, the view of Prof. Ripley is worth quoting. This is what Prof. Ripley [f9]has to say on the subject:
The utter absurdity of the misnomer Caucasian, as applied to the blue-eyed and fair-headed 'Aryan' (?) race of Western Europe, is revealed by two indisputable facts. In the first place, this ideal blond type does not occur within many hundred miles of Caucasia; and, secondly, nowhere along the great Caucasian chain is there a single native tribe making use of a purely inflectional or Aryan language.
Even the Ossetes, whose language alone is possibly inflectional, have not had their claims to the honour of Aryan made positively clear as yet. And even if Ossetian be Aryan, there is every reason to regard the people as immigrants from the direction of Iran, not indigenous Caucasians at all. Their head form, together with their occupation of territory along the only highwaythe Pass of Darrielacross the chain from the South, give tenability to the hypothesis. At all events, whether the Ossetes be Aryan or not, they little deserve pre-eminence among the other peoples about them. They are lacking both in the physical beauty for which this region is justly famous, and in courage as well, if we may judge by their reputation in yielding abjectly and without shadow of resistance to the Russians.
It is not true that any of these Caucasians are even 'somewhat typical'. As a matter of fact they could never be typical of anything. The name covers nearly every physical type and family of language of the Eur-Asian continent except, as we have said, that blond, tall, 'Aryan' speaking one to which the name has been specifically applied. It is all false; not only improbable but absurd. The Caucasus is not a cradleit is rather a graveof peoples, of languages, of customs and of physical types. Let us be assured of that point at the outset. Nowhere else in the world probably is so heterogeneous a lot of people, languages and religions gathered together in one place as along the chain of the Caucasus mountains."
Mr. Tilak has suggested that the original home of the Aryan race was in the Arctic region. His theory may be summarised in his own words. He begins by taking note of the astronomical and climatic phenomenon in the region round about the North Pole. He finds[f10] that there are:
"Two sets of characteristics, or differentice; one for an observer stationed exactly at the terrestrial North Pole, and the other for an observer located in the Circum-Polar regions, or tracts of land between the North Pole and the Arctic circle."
Mr. Tilak calls these two sets of differentice; as Polar and Circum-Polar, and sums them up as follows :
/. The Polar Characteristics
(1) The sun rises in the south.
(2) The stars do not rise and set; but revolve or spin round and round, in horizontal planes, completing one round in 24 hours. The northern celestial hemisphere is alone overhead and visible during the whole year; and the southern or lower celestial world is always invisible.
(3) The year consists only of one long day and one long night of six months each.
(4) There is only one morning and one evening, or the sun rises and sets only once a year. But the twilight, whether of the morning or of the evening, lasts continuously for about two months, or 60 periods of 24 hours each. The ruddy light of the morn, or the evening twilight, is not again confined to a particular part of the horizon (eastern or western) as with us; but moves, like the stars at the place, round and round along the horizon, like a potter's wheel, completing one round in every 24 hours. These rounds of the morning light continue to take place, until the orb of the sun comes above the horizon; and then the sun follows the same course for six months, that is, moves, without setting, round and round the observer, completing one round every 24 hours.
II. The Circum-Polar Characteristics
(1) The sun will always be to the south of the zenith of the observer, but as this happens even in the case of an observer stationed in the temperate zone, it cannot be regarded as a special characteristic.
(2) A large number of stars are circum-polor, that is, they are above the horizon during the entire period of their revolution and hence always visible. The remaining stars rise and set as in the temperate zone, but revolve in more oblique circles.
(3) The year is made up of three parts: (i) one long continuous night, occurring at the time of the winter solstice, and lasting for a period, greater than 24 hours and less than six months, according to the latitude of the place; (ii) one long continuous day to match, occurring at the time of the summer solstice; and (iii) a succession of ordinary days and nights during the rest of the year, a nycthemeron, or a day and a night together, never exceeding a period of 24 hours. The day, after the long continuous night, is at first shorter than the night, but goes on increasing until it develops into the long continuous day. At the end of the long day, the night is, at first, shorter than the day, but, in its turn, it begins to gain over the day, until the commencement of the long continuous night, with which the year ends.
(4) The dawn, at the close of the long continuous night, lasts for several days, but its duration and magnificence is proportionally less than at the North Pole, according to the latitude of the place. For places, within a few degrees of the North Pole, the phenomenon of revolving morning light will still be observable during the greater part of the duration of the dawn. The other dawns viz., those between ordinary days and nights, will, like the dawns in the temperate zone, only last for a few hours. The sun, when he is above the horizon during the continuous day, will be seen revolving, without setting, round the observer, as at the Pole, but in oblique and not horizontal circles, and during the long night he will be entirely below the horizon, while during the rest of the year he will rise and set, remaining above the horizon for a part of 24 hours, varying according to the position of the sun in the ecliptic.
Summing up the position as analysed by him, Mr. Tilak concludes by saying:
"Here we have two distinct sets of differentice or special characteristics of the Polar and Circum-Polar regionscharacteristics which are not found anywhere else on the surface of the globe. Again as the Poles of the earth are the same to-day as they were millions of years ago, the above astronomical characteristics will hold good for all times, though the Polar climate may have undergone violent changes in the Pleistocene period."
Having noted the phenomenon in the Arctic region, Mr. Tilak proceeds to argue that :
"If a Vedic description or tradition discloses any of the characteristics mentioned above, we may safely infer that the tradition is Polar or Circum-Polar in origin, and the phenomenon, if not actually witnessed by the poet, was at least known to him by tradition faithfully handed down from generation to generation. Fortunately there are many such passages or references in the Vedic literature, and, for convenience, these may be divided into two parts; the first comprising those passages which directly describe or refer to the long night, or the long dawn; and the second consisting of myths and legends which corroborate and indirectly support the First."
Mr. Tilak is satisfied that the description of natural phenomenon and the myths and legends contained in the Vedas tally with the natural phenomenon as it exists near the North Pole and concludes that the Vedic poets i.e., the Vedic Aryans must have had the Arctic region as their home.
This is of course a very original theory. There is only one point which seems to have been overlooked. The horse is a favourite animal of the Vedic Aryans. It was most intimately connected with their life and their religion. That the queens vied with one another to copulate with the horse in the Ashvamedha Yajna [f11] shows what place the horse had acquired in the life of the Vedic Aryans. Question is : was the horse to be found in the Arctic region? If the answer is in the negative, the Arctic home theory becomes very precarious.
What evidence is there of the invasion of India by the Aryan race and the subjugation by it of the native tribes? So far as the Rig Veda is concerned, there is not a particle of evidence suggesting the invasion of India by the Aryans from outside India. As Mr. P. T. Srinivasa lyengar[f12] points out:
"A careful examination of the Manatras where the words Arya, Dasa and Dasyu occur, indicates that they refer not to race but to cult. These words occur mostly in Rig Veda Samhita where Arya occurs about 33 times in mantras which contain 153,972 words on the whole. The rare occurrence is itself a proof that the tribes that called themselves Aryas were not invaders that conquered the country and exterminated the people. For an invading tribe would naturally boast of its achievements constantly."
So far the testimony of the Vedic literature is concerned, it is against the theory that the original home of the Aryans was outside India. The language in which reference to the seven rivers is made in the Rig. Veda (X.75.5) is very significant. As Prof. D. S. Triveda says[f13]the rivers are addressed as 'my Ganges, my Yamuna, my Saraswati' and so on. No foreigner would ever address a river in such familiar and endearing terms unless by long association he had developed an emotion about it.
As to the question of conquest and subjugation, references can undoubtedly be found in the Rig Veda where Dasas and Dasyus are described as enemics of the Aryas and there are many hymns in which the Vedic rishis have invited their gods to kill and annihilate them. But before drawing any conclusion from it in favour of conquest and subjugation by the Aryans, the following points must be taken into consideration.
First is the paucity of references in the Rig Veda to wars between the Aryans on the one hand and the Dasas or Dasyus on the other. Out of the 33 places in which the word occurs in the Rig Veda only in 8 places is it used in opposition to Dasas and only in 7 places is it used in opposition to the word Dasyus. This may show the occurrence of sporadic riots between the two. It is certainly not evidence of a conquest or subjugation.
The second point about the Dasas is that whatever conflict there was between them and the Aryans, the two seem to have arrived at a mutual settlement, based on peace with honour. This is borne out by references in the Rig Veda showing how the Dasas and Aryans have stood as one united people against a common enemy. Note the following verses from the Rig Veda :
Rig Veda - vi. 33.3;
The third point to note is that whatever the degree of conflict, it was not a conflict of race. It was a conflict which had arisen on account of difference of religions. That this conflict was religious and not racial is evidenced by the Rig Veda itself. Speaking of the Dasyus, it [f14] says :
"They are avrata, without (the Arya) rites (R.V., i. 51.8, 9; i.l32.4; iv.41. 2; vi. 14, 3); apavrata (R.V., v.42,2), anyavrata of different rites (R.V., viii.59, II; x.22, 8), Anagnitra fireless (R.V., v.l89, 3), ayajyu, ayajvan, non-sacrifices (R.V., i.l31, 44; i.33, 4; viii.59, II), abrambha, without prayers (or also not having Brahmana priest (R.V., iv.l5,9; x.l05,8). anrichah, without Riks (R.V., x.l05, 8), Brahmadvisha, haters of prayer (or Brahmans) R.V., v.42,9), and anindra, without Indra, despisers of Indra, (R.V., i.l33, 1: v.2, 3; vii 18; 6; x 27, 6; x.48, 7). 'They pour no milky draughts they heat no cauldron' (R.V., iii.53, 4). They give no gifts to the Brahmana (R.V., v.7, 10)."
Attention may also be drawn to the Rig Veda X.22.8 which says :
In the face of these statements from the Rig Veda, there is obviously no room for a theory of a military conquest by the Aryan race of the non-Aryan races of Dasas and Dasyus.
So much about the Aryans, their invasion of India and their subjugation of the Dasas and Dasyus. The consideration so far bestowed upon the question has been from the Aryan side of the issue. It might be useful to discuss it from the side of the Dasas and the Dasyus. In what sense are the names Dasa and Dasyu used? Are they used in a racial sense?
Those who hold that the terms Dasa and Dasyu are used in the racial sense rely upon the following circumstances: (1) The use in the Rig Veda of the terms Mridhravak and Anasa as epithets of Dasyus. (2) The description in the Rig Veda of the Dasas as being of Krishna Varna
The term Mridhravak occurs in the following places in the Rig Veda :
(1) Rig Veda, i. 174. 2;
(2) Rig Veda, v. 32.8;
(3) Rig Veda, vii. 6. 3;
(4) Rig Veda, vii. 18. 3.
What does the adjective Mridhravak mean? Mridhravak means one who speaks crude, unpolished language. Can crude unpolished language be regarded as evidence of difference of race? It would be childish to rely upon this as a basis of consciousness of race difference.
The term Anasa occurs in Rig Veda V.29.10. What does the word mean? There are two interpretations. One is by Prof. Max Muller. The other is by Sayanacharya. According to Prof.. Max Muller, it means 'one without nose 'or' one with a flat nose' and has as such been relied upon as a piece of evidence in support of the view that the Aryans were a separate race from the Dasyus. Sayanacharya says that it means 'mouthless,' i.e., devoid of good speech. This difference of meaning is due to difference in the correct reading of the word Anasa.. Sayanacharya reads it as an-asa while Prof. Max Muller reads it as a-nasa. As read by Prof. Max Muller, it means without nose. Question is : which of the two readings is the correct one? There is no reason to hold that Sayana's reading is wrong. On the other hand there is everything to suggest that it is right. In the first place, it does not make non-sense of the word. Secondly, as there is no other place where the Dasyus are described as noseless, there is no reason why the word should be read in such a manner as to give it an altogether new sense. It is only fair to read it as a synonym of Mridhravak. There is therefore no evidence in support of the conclusion that the Dasyus belonged to a different race.
Turning to Dasas, it is true that they are described as Krishna Yoni, in Rig Veda vi.47.21. But there are various points to be considered before one can accept the inference which is sought to be drawn from it. First is that this is the only place in the Rig Veda where the phrase Krishna Yoni is applied to the Dasas. Secondly, there is no certainty as to whether the phrase is used in the literal sense or in a figurative sense. Thirdly, we do not know whether it is a statement of fact or a word of abuse. Unless these points are clarified, it is not possible to accept the view that because the Dasas are spoken of as Krishna Yoni, they therefore, belonged to a dark race.
In this connection, attention may be drawn to the following verses from the Rig Veda:
1. Rig Veda, vi.22.10."Oh, Vajri, thou hast made Aryas of Dasas, good men out of bad by your power. Give us the same power so that with it we may overcome our enemies."
2. Rig Veda, x.49.3, (says Indra)."I have deprived the Dasyus of the title of Aryas."
What do these verses indicate? They indicate that the distinction between the Aryans on the one hand and the Dasas and Dasyus on the other was not a racial distinction of colour or physiognomy. That is why a Dasa or Dasyu could become an Arya. That is why Indra was given the task to separate them from the Arya.
That the theory of the Aryan race set up by Western writers falls to the ground at every point, goes without saying. This is somewhat surprising since Western scholarship is usually associated with thorough research and careful analysis. Why has the theory failed? it is important to know the reasons why it has failed. Anyone who cares to scrutinise the theory will find that it suffers from a double infection. In the first place, the theory is based on nothing but pleasing assumptions and inferences based on such assumptions. In the second place, the theory is a perversion of scientific investigation. It is not allowed to evolve out of facts. On the contrary the theory is preconceived and facts are selected to prove it.
The theory of the Aryan race is just an assumption and no more. It is based on a philological proposition put forth by Dr. Bopp in his epoch-making book called Comparative Grammar which appeared in 1835. In this book. Dr. Bopp demonstrated that a greater number of languages of Europe and some languages of Asia must be referred to a common ancestral speech. The European languages and Asiatic languages to which Bopp's proposition applied are called Indo-Germanic. Collectively, they have come to be called the Aryan languages largely because Vedic language refer to the Aryas and is also of the same family as the Indo-Germanic. This assumption is the major premise on which the theory of the Aryan race is based.
From this assumption are drawn two inferences: (1) unity of race, and (2) that race being the Aryan race. The argument is that if the languages are descended from a common ancestral speech then there must have existed a race whose mother tongue it was and since the mother tongue was known as the Aryan tongue the race who spoke it was the Aryan race. The existence of a separate and a distinct Aryan race is thus an inference only. From this inference, is drawn another inference which is that of a common original habitat. It is argued that there could be no community of language unless people had a common habitat permitting close communion. Common original habitat is thus an inference from an inference.
The theory of invasion is an invention. This invention is necessary because of a gratuitous assumption which underlies the Western theory. The assumption is that the Indo-Germanic people are the purest of the modern representatives of the original Aryan race. Its first home is assumed to have been somewhere in Europe. These assumptions raise a question: How could the Aryan speech have come to India: This question can be answered only by the supposition that the Aryans must have come into India from outside. Hence the necessity for inventing the theory of invasion.
The third assumption is that the Aryans were a superior race. This theory has its origin in the belief that the Aryans are a European race and as a European race it is presumed to be superior to the Asiatic races. Having assumed its superiority, the next logical step one is driven to take is to establish the fact of superiority. Knowing that nothing can prove the superiority of the Aryan race better than invasion and conquest of native races, the Western writers have proceeded to invent the story of the invasion of India by the Aryans and the conquest by them of the Dasas and Dasyus.
The fourth assumption is that the European races were white[f15] and had a colour prejudice against the dark races. The Aryans being a European race, it is assumed that it must have had colour prejudice. The theory proceeds to find evidence for colour prejudice in the Aryans who came into India. This it finds in the Chaturvarnya an institution by the established Indo-Aryans after they came to India and which according to these scholars is based upon Varna which is taken by them to mean colour.
Not one of these assumptions is borne out by facts. Take the premise about the Aryan race. The theory does not take account of the possibility that the Aryan race in the physiological sense is one thing and an Aryan race in the philological sense quite different, and that it is perfectly possible that the Aryan race, if there is one, in the physiological sense may have its habitat in one place and that the Aryan race, in the philological sense, in quite a different place. The theory of the Aryan race is based on the premise of a common language and it is supposed to be common because it has a structural affinity. The assertion that the Aryans came from outside and invaded India is not proved and the premise that the Dasas and Dasyus are aboriginal tribes[f16] of India is demonstrably false.
Again to say that the institution of Chaturvarnya is a reflection of the innate colour prejudice of the Aryans is really to assert too much. If colour is the origin of class distinction, there must be four different colours to account for the different classes which comprise Chaturvarnya. Nobody has said what those four colours are and who were the four coloured races who were welded together in Chaturvarnya. As it is, the theory starts with only two opposing people, Aryas and Dasasone assumed to be white and the other assumed to be dark.
The originators of the Aryan race theory are so eager to establish their case that they have no patience to see what absurdities they land themselves in. They start on a mission to prove what they want to prove and do not hesitate to pick such evidence from the Vedas as they think is good for them.
Prof. Michael Foster has somewhere said that 'hypothesis is the salt of science.' Without hypothesis there is no possibility of fruitful investigation. But it is equally true that where the desire to prove a particular hypothesis is dominant, hypothesis becomes the poison of science. The Aryan race theory of Western scholars is as good an illustration of how hypothesis can be the poison of science as one can think of.
The Aryan race theory is so absurd that it ought to have been dead long ago. But far from being dead, the theory has a considerable hold upon the people. There are two explanations which account for this phenomenon. The first explanation is to be found in the support which the theory receives from Brahmin scholars. This is a very strange phenomenon. As Hindus, they should ordinarily show a dislike for the Aryan theory with its express avowal of the superiority of the European races over the Asiatic races. But the Brahmin scholar has not only no such aversion but he most willingly hails it. The reasons are obvious. The Brahmin believes in the two-nation theory. He claims to be the representative of the Aryan race and he regards the rest of the Hindus as descendants of the non-Aryans. The theory helps him to establish his kinship with the European races and share their arrogance and their superiority. He likes particularly that part of the theory which makes the Aryan an invader and a conqueror of the non-Aryan native races. For it helps him to maintain and justify his overlordship over the non-Brahmins.
The second explanation why the Aryan race theory is not dead is because of the general insistence by European scholars that the word Varna means colour and the acceptance of that view by a majority of the Brahmin scholars. Indeed, this is the mainstay of the Aryan theory. There is no doubt that as long as this interpretation of the Varna continues to be accepted, the Aryan theory will continue to live. This part of the Aryan theory is therefore very important and calls for fuller examination. It needs to be examined from three different points of view: (1) Were the European races fair or dark? (2) Were the Indo-Aryans fair? and (3) What is the original meaning of the world Varna ?
On the question of the colour of the earliest Europeans Prof. Ripley is quite definite that they were of dark complexion. Prof. Ripley goes on to say:[f17]
"We are strengthened in this assumption that the earliest Europeans were not only long-headed but also dark complexioned, by various points in our enquiry thus far. We have proved the prehistoric antiquity of the living Cro-Magnon type in Southern France; and we saw that among these peasants, the prevalence of black hair and eyes is very striking. And comparing types in the British Isles we saw that everything tended to show that the Brunet populations of Wales, Ireland and Scotland constituted the most primitive stratum of population in Britain. Furthermore, in that curious spot in Garfagnana, where a survival of the ancient Ligurian population of Northern Italy is indicated, there also are the people characteristically dark. Judged, therefore, either in the light of general principles or of local details, it would seem as if this earliest race in Europe must have been very dark.... It was Mediterranean in its pigmental affinities, and not Scandinavian."
Turning to the Vedas for any indication whether the Aryans had any colour prejudice, reference may be made to the following passages in the Rig Veda :
In Rig Veda, i. 117.8, there is a reference to Ashvins having brought about the marriage between Shyavya and Rushati.Shyavya is black and Rushati is fair.
In Rig Veda, i. 117.5, there is a prayer addressed to Ashvins for having saved Vandana who is spoken as of golden colour.
In Rig Veda, ii.3.9, there is a prayer by an Aryan invoking the Devas to bless him with a son with certain virtues but of (pishanga) tawny (reddish brown) complexion.
These instances show that the Vedic Aryans had no colour prejudice. How could they have? The Vedic Aryans were not of one colour. Their complexion varied; some were of copper complexion, some white, and some black. Rama the son of Dasharatha has been described as Shyama i.e., dark in complexion, so is Krishna the descendant of the Yadus, another Aryan clan. The Rishi Dirghatamas, who is the author of many mantras of the Rig Veda must have been of dark colour if his name was given to him after his complexion. Kanva is an Aryan rishi of great repute. But according to the description given in Rig VedaX.31.11he was of dark colour.
To take up the third and the last point, namely, the meaning of the word Varna.[f18] Let us first see in what sense it is used in the Rig Veda. The word Varna is used[f19] in the Rig Veda in 22 places. Of these, in about 17 places the word is used in reference to decides such as Ushas, Agni, Soma, etc., and means lustre, features or colour. Being used in connection with deities, it would be unsafe to use them for ascertaining what meaning the word Varna had in the Rig Veda when applied to human beings. There are four and at the most five places in the Rig Veda where the word is used in reference to human beings. They are:
2) i. 179.6;
Do these references prove that the word Varna is used in the Rig Veda in the sense of colour and complexion?
Rig veda, iii.34.5 seems to be of doubtful import. The expression 'caused Shukia Varna to increase' is capable of double interpretation. It may mean Indra made Ushas throw her light and thereby increase the white colour, or it may mean that the hymn-maker being of white complexion, people of his i.e., of white colour increased. The second meaning would be quite far-fetched for the simple reason that the expansion of the white colour is the effect and lightening of Ushas is the cause.
Rig Veda, ix.71.2 the expression 'abandons Asura Varna' is not clear, reading it in the light of the other stanzas in the Sukta. The Sukta belongs to Soma Pavamana. Bearing this in mind, the expression 'abandons Asura Varna' must be regarded as a description of Soma. The word Varna as used here is indicative of roopa. The second half of the stanza says: 'he throws away his black or dark covering and takes on lustrous covering.' From this it is clear that the word Varna is used as indicative of darkness.
Rig Veda, i. 179.6 is very helpful. The stanza explains that Rishi Agastya cohabitated with Lopamudra in order to obtain praja, children and strength and says that as a result two Varnas prospered. It is not clear from the stanza, which are the two Varnas referred to in the stanzas, although the intention is to refer to Aryas and Dasas.
Be that as it may, there is no doubt that the Varna in the stanza means class and not colour.
In Rig Veda, i. 104.2 and Rig Veda, ii.l2.4 are the two stanzas in which the word Varna is applied to Dasa. The question is: What does the word Varna mean when applied to Dasa? Does it refer to the colour and complexion of the Dasa, or does it indicate that Dasas formed a separate class? There is no way of arriving at a positive conclusion as to which of the two meanings is correct.
The evidence of the Rig Veda is quite inconclusive. In this connection, it will be of great help to know if the word occurs in the literature of the Indo-lranians and if so, in what sense.[f20]
Fortunately, the word Varna does occur in the Zend Avesta. It takes the form of Varana or Varena. It is used specifically in the sense of "Faith, Religious doctrine. Choice of creed or belief." It is derived from the root Var which means to put faith in, to believe in. One comes across the word Varana or Varena in the Gathas about six times used in the sense of faith, doctrine, creed or belief.
It occurs in Gatha AhunavaitiYasna Ha 30 Stanza 2 which when translated in English reads as follows :
"Give heed with your ears and contemplate the highest Truth I proclaim; with your illumined mind introspect. Each man for himself must determine his (Avarenao) faith. Before the Great Event, let each individually be awake to the Truth we teach."
This is one of the most famous strophes of the Gatha where Zarathushtra exhorts each one individually to use reasoning faculty and freedom of choice in the selection of his or her faith. The words occurring here are 'Avarenao vichithahya,'Avarenao meaning faith, belief and vichi- thahya meaning 'of discriminating, of selecting of determining'.
It occurs in Gatha AhunavatiYasna Ha 31 Stanza II. The word used is Vareneng accusative plural of Varena meaning 'belief, faith.' In this stanza, Zarathushtra propounds the theory of the creation of man. After speaking about man's creation being completed, in the last half line Zarathushtra says "voluntary beliefs are given (to man)".
It occurs in Gatha Ushtavaiti Yasna Ha 45 Stanza I in the from of Varena. In the last line of this strophe, Zarathushtra says 'owing to sinful belief (or evil faith) the wicked is of evil tongue (or invested tongue)'.
lt occurs in Gatha UshtavaidYasna Ha 45 Stanza 2 in the same form as above Varena in the clear sense of faith, religion, belief, etc. In this stanza, Zarathushtra is propounding his philosophy of good and evil and speaking of dual aspects of human mind. In this stanza, the two mentalitiesthe good mentality and the evil mentalityare speaking to each other saying "Neither in thought, word, intelligence, faith (or religion or creed) utterance, deed, conscience nor soul do we agree."
It occurs in Gatha Spenta Mainyu,Yasna Ha 48 Stanza 4 in the form of Vareneng meaning religion, faith (root Vere Persian gervidan = to have faith in). In this stanza Zarathushtra says that "Whosoever will make his mind pure and holy and thus keep his conscience pure by deed and word, such man's desire is in accordance with his faith (religion, belief)."
It occurs in Gatha Spenta Mainyu,Yasna Ha 49 Stanza 3 as Varenai in dative case meaning 'religion'. In the same stanza occurs the word Thaeshai which also means religion, creed, religious law. These two words Varenai and Tkaesha occuring in the same stanza strengthens our argument, as the word Tkaesha clearly means religion as is found in the compound Ahuratkaesha meaning 'The Ahurian religion'. This word Tkaesha is translated in Pahlavi as Kish which means religion.
In Vendidad (a book of Zarathushtrian sanitary law written in Avesta language) we come across a word Anyo Varena. Here Anyo mean other and Varena means religion, thus a man of different religion, faith, belief is spoken of as Anyo-Varena. Similarly, we come across in Vendidad the word Anyo-Tkaosha also meaning a man of different religion.
We come across many verbal forms in the Gatha derived from this root, e.g., Ahunavaiti Gatha Yasna Ha, 31, Stanza 3. Zarathushtra declares Ya jvanto vispeng vauraya; here the verb vauraya means I may cause to induce belief, faith (in God) (in all the living ones). In Yasna Ha, 28: Stanza 5, we come across the verb vauroimaidi, 'We may give faith to.' We come across another interesting form of this word in Gatha Vahishtaishtish, Yasna Ha, 53, Stanza 9 Duz-Varenaish. It is instrumental plural. The first part Duz means wicked, false and Varenai means believer. Thus the word means "A man belonging to false or wicked religion or a false or wicket believer."
In the Zarathushtrian Confession of Faith, which forms Yasna Ha, 12, we come across the word Fravarane meaning 1 confess my faith, my belief in Mazdayasno Zarathushtrish 'Mazda worshipping Zara-thushtrian Religion'. This phrase occurs in almost all the Zara-thushtrian prayers. There is yet another form in the Zarathushtrian Confession Yasna, 12, Ya-V arena. Here Ya is relative pronoun meaning which and Varenafaith, religion. Thus, the word means 'the religion to which'. This form Ya Varena is used nine times in Yasna 12, and it is used in the clear sense of faith or religion. Here again the word Varena is placed along with the word Tkaesha which means religion.
A very interesting reference is found in Yasna 16 Zarathushtrahe varenerncha tkaeshemcha yazamaide. Here the Varena and Tkaesha of Zarathushtra is worshipped. It is quite clear from the use of these corresponding and co-relative words that the faith and religion of Zarthushtra is meant. The translation of the above line is "We worship the faith and religion of Zarathushtra.'
This evidence from the Zenda Avesta as to the meaning of the word Varna leaves no doubt that it originally meant a class holding to a particular faith and it had nothing to do with colour or complexion.
The conclusions that follow from the examination of the Western theory may now be summarised. They are:
(1) The Vedas do not know any such race as the Aryan race.
(2) There is no evidence in the Vedas of any invasion of India by the Aryan race and its having conquered the Dasas and Dasyus supposed to be natives of India.
(3) There is no evidence to show that the distinction between Aryans, Dasas and Dasyus was a racial distinction.
ENOUGH has been said to show how leaky is the Aryan theory expounded by Western scholars and glibly accepted by their Brahmin fellows. Yet, the theory has such a hold on the generality of people that what has been said against it may mean no more than scotching it. Like the snake it must be killed. It is therefore necessary to pursue the examination of the theory further with a view to expose its hollowness completely.
Those who uphold the theory of an Aryan race invading India and conquering the Dasas and Dasyus fail to take note of certain verses in the Rig Veda. These verses are of crucial importance. To build up a theory of an Aryan race marching into India from outside and conquering the non-Aryan native tribes without reference to these verses is an utter futility. I reproduce below the verses I have in mind:
(1) Rig Veda, vi. 33.3."Oh, Indra, Thou has killed both of our opponents, the Dasas and the Aryas."
(2) Rig Veda, vi.60.3 "Indra and Agnithese protectors of the good and righteous suppress the Dasas and Aryas who hurt us."
(3) Rig Veda, vii.81.1. "Indra and Varuna killed the Dasas and Aryas who were the enemies of Sudas and thus protected Sudas from them."
(4) Rig Veda, viii.24.27."Oh you, Indra, who saved us from the hands of the cruel Rakshasas and from the Aryas living on the banks of the Indus, do thou deprive the Dasas of their weapons."
(5) Rig Veda, X.38.3."Oh you much revered Indra, those Dasas and Aryas who axe irreligious and who are our enemies, make it easy for us with your blessings to subdue them. With your help we shall kill them."
(6) Rig Veda, X.86.19.Oh, You Mameyu, you give him all powers who plays you. With your help we will destroy our Arya and our Dasyu enemies.
Anyone who reads these verses, notes what they say calmly and cooly and considers them against the postulates of the Western theory will be taken aback by them. If the authors of these verses of the Rig Veda were Aryas then the idea which these verses convey is that there were two different communities of Aryas who were not only different but oppose and inimical to each other. The existence of two Aryas is not a mere matter of conjecture or interpretation. It is a fact in support of which there is abundant evidence.
The first piece of such evidence, to which attention may be invited, is the discrimination which existed for a long time in the matter of the recognition of the sacred character of the different Vedas. All students of the Vedas know that there are really two Vedas: (1) the Rig Veda and (2) the Atharva Veda. The Sama Veda and the Yajur Veda are merely different forms of the Rig Veda. All students of the Vedas know that the Atharva Veda was not recognised by the Brahmins as sacred as the Rig Veda for a long time. Why was such a distinction made? Why was the Rig Veda regarded as sacred? Why was the Atharva Veda treated as vulgar? The answer, I like to suggest, is that the two belonged to two different races of Aryans and it is only when they had become one that the Atharva Veda came to be regarded on a par with the Rig Veda.
Besides this, there is enough evidence, scattered through the whole of the Brahmanic literature, of the existence of two different ideologies, particularly relating to creation, which again points to the existence of two different Aryan races. Reference to one of these has already been made in Chapter 2. It remains to draw attention to the second type of ideology.
To begin with the Vedas. The following ideology is to be found in the Taittiriya Samhita:
T.S.,[f21] vi.5.6.1."Aditi, desirous of sons, cooked, a Brahmaudana oblation for the gods, the Sadhyas. They gave her the remnant of it This she ate. She conceived seed. Four Adityas were born to her. She cooked a second (oblation). She reflected, 'from the remains of the oblation these sons have been born to me. If I shall eat (the oblation) first, more brilliant (sons) will be born to me.' She ate it first; she conceived seed; an imperfect egg was produced from her. She cooked a third (oblation) for the Adityas, repeating the formula 'may this religious toil have been undergone for my enjoyment.' The Adityas said, Let us choose a boon; let anyone who is produced from this be ours only; let anyone of his progeny who is prosperous be for us a source of enjoyment' In consequence the Aditya Vivasvat was born. This is his progeny, namely, men. Among them he alone who sacrifices is prosperous, and becomes a cause of enjoyment to the gods."
Turning to the Brahmanas. The stories of creation contained in the Satapatha Brahmanas are set out below :
S.B.,1 i.8.1.1In the morning they brought to Manu water for washing, as men are in the habit of bringing it to wash with the hands. As he was thus washing, a fish came into his hands (which spoke to him) 'preserve me: I shall save thee.' (Manu enquired) From what will thou save me?' (The fish replied) 'A flood shall sweep away all these creatures; from it will I rescue thee.' (Manu
asked) 'How (shall) thy preservation (be effected)?' The fish said : 'So long as we are small, we are in great peril, for fish devours fish; thou shall preserve me first in a jar. When I grow too large for the jar, then thou shall dig a trench, and preserve me in that. When I grow too large for the trench, then thou shall carry me away to the ocean. I shall then be beyond the reach of danger. Straight, away he became a large fish; for he waxes to the utmost. (He said) Now in such and such a year, then the flood will come; thou shall embark in the ship when the flood rises, and I shall deliver thee from it.' Having thus preserved the fish, Manu carried him away to the sea. Then in the same year which the fish had enjoined, he constructed a ship and resorted to him. When the flood rose, Manu embarked in the ship. The fish swam towards him. He fastened the cable of the ship to the fish's horn. By this means he passed over this northern mountain. The fish said, 1 have delivered thee; fasten the ship to a tree. But lest the water should cut thee off whilst thou art on the mountain, as much as the water subsides so much shall thou descend after it.' He accordingly descended after it as much (as it subsided). Wherefore also this, viz., ' Manu's descent ' is (the name) of the northern mountain. Now the flood had swept away all these creatures, so Manu alone was left here. Desirous of offspring, he lived worshipping and toiling in arduous religious rites. Among these he also sacrificed with the paka offering. He cast clarified butter, thickened milk, whey and curds as an oblation into the waters. Thence in a year a woman was produced. She rose up as it were unctuous. Clarified butter adheres to her steps. Mitra and Varuna met her. They said to her ' who art thou? ' ' Manu's daughter' (she replied). Say (thou art) ours ' (they rejoined). ' No', she said, I am his who begot me.' They desired a share in her. She promised that, or she did not promise that; but passed onward. She came to Manu. Manu said to her, 'who art thou?' Thy daughter' she replied. 'How, glorious one 'asked Manu,' (art thou) my daughter?' "Thou has generated me, ' she said, ' from those oblations, butter, thick milk, whey and curds, which thou didst cast into the waters. I am a benediction. Apply me in the sacrifice. If thou wilt employ me in the sacrifice, thou shall abound in offspring and cattle. Whatever benediction thou will ask through me, shall accrue to thee.' He (accordingly) introduced her (as) that (which comes in) the middle of the sacrifice; for that is the middle of the sacrifice which (comes) between the introductory and concluding forms. With her he lived worshipping and toiling in arduous religious rites, desirous of offspring. With her he begot this offspring which is this offspring of Manu. Whatever benediction he asked with her, was all vouchsafed to him. This is essentially that which is Ida. Whosoever, knowing this, lives with Ida, begets this offspring which Maim begot Whatever benediction he asks with her, is all vouchsafed to him."
(2) S.B.,[f22] vi.l.2.11. "Wherefore they say, "Prajapati having created those worlds was supported upon the earth. For him these herbs were cooked as food. That (food) he ate. He became pregnant. He created the gods from his upper vital airs, and mortal offspring from his lower vital airs. In whatever way he created, so he created. But Prajapati created all this, whatever exists."
(3) S.B. [f23]vii.5.2.6. Prajapati was formerly this (universe),one only. He desired.' Let me create food, and be propagated.' He formed animals from his breath, a man from his soul, a horse from his eye, a bull from his breath, a sheep from his ear, a goat from his voice. Since he formed animals from his breaths, therefore men say, ' the breaths are animals.' The soul is the first of the breaths. Since he formed a man from his 'soul' therefore they say 'man is the first of the animals, and the strongest.' The soul is all the breaths; for all the breaths depend upon the soul. Since he formed man from his soul, therefore they say,' man is all the animals;' for all these are man's."
(4) S.B., [f24]x. 1.3.1. "Prajapati created living beings. From his upper vital airs he created the gods: from his lower vital airs mortal creatures. Afterwards he created death a devourer of creatures."
(5) S.B., [f25]xiv.4.2.1. "This universe was formerly soul only, in the form of Purusha. Looking closely, he saw nothing but himself (or soul). He first said,' This is 1.' Then he became one having the name of 1. Hence even now a man, when called, first says/this is I, 'and then declares the other name when he has. In as much as he, before (purvah) all this, burnt up (aushat) all sins, he (is called), purusha. The man who knows this burns up the person who wishes to be before him. He was afraid. Hence a man when alone is afraid. This (being) considered that ' there is no other thing but myself; of what am I afraid?' Then his fear departed. For why should he have feared? It is of a second person that people are afraid. He did not enjoy happiness. Hence a person when alone does not enjoy happiness. He desired a second. He was so much as a man and a woman when locked in embrace. He caused this same self to fall as under into two parts. Thence arose a husband and wife. Hence Yajnavalkya has said that 'this one's self is like the half of a split pea.' Hence the void is filled up by woman. He cohabited with her. From them Men were born. She reflected how does he, after having produced me from himself, cohabit with me? Ah! let me disappear'; she became a cow, and the other a bull; and he cohabited with her. From them kine were produced. The one became a mare, the other a stallion, the one a she-ass, the other a male-ass. He cohabited with her. From them the class of animals with undivided hoofs were produced. The one became a she-goat, the other a he-goat, the one a ewe, the other a ram. He cohabited with her. From them goats and sheep were produced. In this manner pairs of all creatures whatsoever down to ants, were produced.
The Taitritriya Brahmana has the following :
T.B.1 ii.2.9.[f26]."At first this (universe) was not anything. There was neither sky, nor earth, nor air. Being non-existent, it resolved let me be.' It became fervent. From that fervour smoke was produced. It again became fervent. From that fervour fire was produced. It again became fervent. From that fervour light was produced. It again became fervent. From that fervour flame was produced. It again became fervent From that fervour rays were produced. It again became fervent. From that fervour blazes were produced. It again became fervent It became condensed like a cloud. It clove its bladder. That became the sea. Hence men do not drink of the sea. For they regard it as like the place of generation. Hence water issues forth before an animal when it is being born. After that the Dasahotri (a particular formula) was created. Prajapati is the Dasahotri. That man succeeds, who thus knowing the power of austere abstraction (or fervour) practises it. This was then water, fluid. Prajapati wept (exclaiming). ' For what purpose have I been born, if (I have been born) from this which forms no support.' That which fell into the waters became the earth. That which he wiped away, became the air. That which he wiped away, upward, became the sky. From the circumstance that he wept (arodit), these two regions have the name of rodasi, (words). They do not weep in the house of the man who knows this. This was the birth of these worlds. He who thus knows the birth of these worlds, incurs no suffering in these worlds. He obtained this (earth as a) basis. Having obtained (this earth as a ) basis, he desired. ' May I be propagated.' He practised austere fervour. He became pregnant He created Asuras from his abdomen. To them he milked out food in an earthen dish. He cast off that body of his. It became darkness. He desired ' May I be propagated.' He practised austere fervour. He became pregnant. He created living beings (prajah) from his organ of generation. Hence they are the most numerous because he created them from -his generative organ. To them he milked out milk in a wooden dish. He cast off that body of his. It became moonlight He desired 'May I be propagated.' He practised austere fervour. He became pregnant. He created the seasons from his armpits. To them he milked out butter in a silver dish. He cast off that body of his. It became the period which connects day and night He desired ' May I be propagated.' He practised austere fervour. He became pregnant. He created the gods from his mouth. To them he milked out Soma in a golden dish. He cast off that body of his. It became day. These are Prajapati's milkings. He who thus knows, milks out offspring. ' Day (diva) has come to us:' this (exclamation expre-sses) the godhead of the gods. He who thus knows the godhead of the gods, obtains the gods. This is the birth of days and nights. He who thus knows the birth of days and nights, incurs no suffering in the days and nights. Mind (or soul, manas ) was created from the non-existent. Mind created Prajapati. Prajapati created offspring. All this, whatever exists, rests absolutely on mind. This is that Brahma called Svovasyasa. For the man who thus knows, (Ushas), dawning, dawns more and more bright; he becomes prolific in offspring, and (rich) in cattle; he obtains the rank of Parameshthin."
(3) T.B.[f27] ii.3.8.1. "Prajapati desired, ' May I propagate.' He practised austerity. He became pregnant. He became yellow brown. Hence a woman when pregnant, being yellow, becomes brown. Being pregnant with a foetus, he became exhausted. Being exhausted he became blackish-brown. Hence an exhausted person becomes blackish-brown. His breath became alive. With that breath (asu) he created Asuras. Therein consists the Asura-nature of Asuras. He who thus knows this Asura-nature of Asuras becomes a man possessing breath. Breath does not forsake him. Having created the Asuras he regarded himself as a father. After that he created the Fathers (Pitris). That constitutes the fatherhood of the Fathers. He who thus knows the fatherhood of the Fathers, becomes as a father of his own; the Fathers resort to his oblation. Having created the Fathers, he reflected. After that he created men. That constitutes the manhood of men. He who knows the manhood of men, becomes intelligent. Mind does not forsake him. To him, when he was creating men, day appeared in the heaven. After that he created the gods. This constitutes the godhead of the gods. To him who thus knows the godhead of the gods, day appears in the heavens. These are the four streams, viz; gods, men, fathers and Asuras. In all of these water is like the air."
(4) T.B.,[f28] iii.2.3.9. "This Shudra has sprung from non- existence."
The following explanation of the origin of creation is given by the Taitririya Aranyaka:
T.A., [f29]i.l2.3.1. "This is water, fluid. Prajapati alone was produced on a lotus leaf. Within, in his mind, desire arose, ' Let me create this.' Hence whatever a man aims at in his mind, he declares by speech, and performs by act. Hence this verse has been uttered, 'Desire formerly arose in it, which was the primal germ of mind, (and which) sages, searching with their intellect, have discovered in the heart as the bond between the existent and the non-existent' (Rig Veda X.129.4). That of which he is desirous comes to the man who thus knows. He practised austere fervour. Having practised austere fervour, he shook his body. From its flesh the rishis (called) Arunas, Ketus and Vatarasanas arose. His nails became the Vaikhanasas, his hairs the Valakhilyas. The fluid (of his body became) a tortoise moving amid the waters. He said to him ' Thou hast sprung from my skin and flesh.' ' No,' replied the tortoise, ' I was here before.' In that (in his having been 'before'' purvam) consists the manhood of a man (purusha) . Becoming a man Purusha with a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, a thousand feet (R.V.X.90.1) he arose. Prajapati said to him, 'thou wert produced before me; do thou first make this.' He took water from this in the cavity of his two hands and placed it on the east, repeating the text, 'so be it, 0 Sun.' From thence the sun arose. That was the eastern quarter. Then Aruna Ketu placed (the water) to the south, saying 'so be it, 0 Agni.' Thence Agni arose. That was the southern quarter. Then Aruna Ketu placed (the water) to the west, saying ' so be it, 0 Vayu.' Thence arose Vayu. That was the western quarter. Then Aruna Ketu placed (the water) to the north, saying 'so be it, 0 Indra.' Then arose Indra. That is the northern quarter. Then Aruna Ketu placed (the water) in the centre, saying 'so be it, 0 Pushan.' Thence arose Pushan. That is this quarter. The Aruna Ketu placed (the water) above saying ' so be it, gods.' Thence arose gods, men, Fathers, Gandharvas and Apsarasa. That is the upper quarter. From the drops which fell apart arose the Asuras, Rakshasas, and Pisachas. Therefore they perished, because they were produced from drops. Hence this text has been uttered; 'when the great waters became pregnant, containing wisdom, and generating Svayambhu, from them were created these creations. All this was produced from the waters. Therefore all this is Brahma Svayambhu.' Hence all this was as it were loose, as it were unsteady. Prajapatiwas that. Having made himself through himself, he entered into that. Wherefore this verse has been uttered; ' Having formed the world, having formed existing things and all intermediate quarters, Prajapati the first born of the ceremonial entered into himself with himself.' "
The Mahabharata has its own contribution to make to the subject. It propounds the theory of creation by Manu.
The Vanaparvan[f30] says:
"There was a great rishi, Manu, son of Vivasvat, majestic, in lustre equal to Prajapati. In energy, fiery vigour, prosperity and austere fervour he surpassed both his father and his grand father. Standing with uplifted arm, on one foot, on the spacious Badari,he practised intense austere fervour. This direful exercise he performed with his head downwards, and with unwinking eyes, for 10,000 years. Once, when, clad in dripping rags, with matted hair, he was so engaged, a fish came to him (mi the banks of the Chirini, and spake: ' Lord, I am a small fish; I dread the stronger ones, and from them you must save me. For the stronger fish devour the weaker; this has been immemorially ordained as our means of subsistence. Deliver me from this flood of apprehension in which I am sinking, and I will requite the deed.' Hearing this, Manu filled with compassion, took the fish in his hand, and bringing him to the water threw him into a jar bright as a moonbeam. In it the fish, being excellently tended, grew; for Manu treated him like a son. After a long time he became very large and could not be contained in the jar. Then, seeing Manu he said again: ' In order that I may thrive, remove me elsewhere.' Manu then took him out of the jar, brought him to a large pond, and threw him in. There he continued to grow for very many years. Although the pond was two yojanas long and oneyojana broad, the lotus-eyed fish found in it no room to move; and again said to Manu. ' Take me to Ganga, the dear queen of the ocean-monarch; in her I shall dwell; or do as thou thinkest best, for I must contentedly submit to thy authority, as through thee I have exceedingly increased.' Manu accordingly took the fish and threw him into the river Ganga. There he waxed for some time, when he again said to Manu, From my great bulk I cannot move in the Ganga; be gracious and remove me quickly to the ocean.' Manu took him out of the Ganga; and cast him into the sea. Although so huge, the fish was easily borne, and pleasant to touch and smell, as Manu carried him. When he had been thrown into the ocean he said to Manu: ' Great Lord, thou hast in every way preserved me; now hear from me what thou must do when the time arrives. Soon shall all these terrestrial objects, both fixed and moving, be dissolved. The time for the purification of the worlds has now arrived. I therefore inform thee what is for thy greatest good. The period dreadful for the universe, moving and fixed, has come. Make for thyself a strong ship, with a cable attached; embark in it with the seven rishis and stow in it, carefully preserved and assorted, all the seeds which have been described of old by Brahmins. When embarked in the ship, look out for me. I shall come recognizable by my horn. So shall thou do; I greet thee and depart These great waters cannot be crossed over without me. Distrust not my word.' Manu replied,' I shall do as thou hast said. ' After taking mutual leave they departed each on his own way. Manu then, as enjoined, taking with him the seeds ' floated on the billowy ocean in the beautiful ship. He then thought on the fish, which knowing his desire, arrived with all speed, distinguished by a horn. When Manu saw the homed leviathan, lofty as a mountain, he fastened the ship's cable to the horn. Being thus attached the fish dragged the ship with great rapidity, transporting it across the briny ocean which seemed to dance with its waves and thunder with its waters. Tossed by the tempests, the ship whirled like a reeling and intoxicated woman. Neither the earth nor the quarter of the world appeared; there was nothing but water, air, and sky. In the world thus confounded, the seven rishis, Manu and the fish were beheld. So, for very many years, the fish, unwearied, drew the ship over the waters; and brought it at length to the highest peak of Himavat. He then, smiling gently, said to the rishis, ' Bind the ship without delay to this peak.' They did so accordingly. And that highest peak of Himavat is still known by the name of Naubandhana ('the Binding of the Ship'.) The friendly fish (or god, animisha) then said to the rishis, 'I am the Prajapati Brahma, than whom nothing higher can be reached. In the form of a fish I have delivered you from this great danger. Manu shall create all living beings, gods, asuras, men, with all worlds, and all things moving and fixed. By my favour and through severe austere fervour he shall attain perfect insight into his creative work, and shall not become bewildered.' Having thus spoken, the fish in an instant disappeared. Manu, desirous to call creatures into existence and bewildered in his work, performed a great act of austere fervour; and then began visibly to create all living beings."
The Adi Parvan of the Mahabharata gives a some what different version of the story of creation:[f31]
"Vaisahmpayari said : I shall, after making obeisance to Svayambhu relate to thee exactly the production and destruction of the gods and other beings. Six great rishis are known as. the mind-born sons of Brahma, viz., Marichi, Atri, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulaha and Kratu. Kasyapa was the son of Marichi: and from Kasyapa sprang these creatures. There were born to Daksha thirteen daughfers of eminent rank, Aditi, Dili, Danu, Kala, Danayu, Sirnuka, Krodha, Pradha, Visva, Vinata, Kapila and Muni. Kadni also was of the number. These daughters had valorous sons and grandsons innumerable.
Daksha, the glorious rishi, tranquil in spirit, and great in austere fervour, sprang from the right thumb of Brahma. From the left thumb sprang that great Muni's wife on whom he begot fifty daughters. Of these he gave ten to Dharma, twentyseven to Indu (Soma), and according to the celestial system, thirteen to Kasyapa. Pitamaha's descendant Manu, the god and the lord of creatures,was his (it does not clearly appear whose) son. The eight Vasus, whom I shall detail, were his sons. Dividing the right breast of Brahma, the glorious Dharma (Righteousness), issued in a human form, bringing happiness to all people. He had three eminent sons, Sama, Kama, and Harsha (Tranquillity, Love, and Joy), who are the delight of all creatures, and by their might support the world .... Arushi, the daughter of Manu.was the wife of that sage (Chyavana, son of Bhrigu)... There are two other sons of Brahma, whose mark remains in the world, Dhatri, and Vidhatri, who remained with Manu. Their sister was the beautiful goddess Lakshmi, whose home is the lotus. Her mind-born sons are the steeds who move in the sky... When the creatures who were desirous of food, had devoured one another, Adharma (Uprighteousness) was produced, the destroyer of all beings. His wife was Nirriti, and hence the Rakshasas are called Nairritas, or the offspring of Nirriti. She had three dreadful sons, continually addicted to evil deeds, Bhaya, Mahabhaya (Fear and Terror) and Mrityu (Death) the ender of beings. He has neither wife, nor any son, for he is the ender."
"Born all with splendour, like that of great rishis, the ten sons of Prachetas are reputed to have been virtuous and holy; and by them the glorious beings were formerly burnt up by the fire springing from their mouths. From them was born Daksha Prachetasa; and from Daksha, the Parent of the world (were produced) these creatures. Cohabiting with Virini, the Muni Daksha begot a thousand sons like himself, famous for their religious obser-vances, to whom Narada taught the doctrine of final liberation, the unequalled knowledge of the Sankhya. Desirous of creating offspring, the Prajapati Daksha next formed fifty daughters, of whom he gave ten to Dharma,thirteen to Kasyapa, and twenty-seven devoted to the regulation of time to Indu (Soma)... On Dakshayani, the most excellent of his thirteen wives, Kasyapa, the son of Marichi, begot the Adityas, headed by Indra and distinguished by their energy, and also Vivasvat. To Vivasvat was born a son, the mighty Yama Vaivasvata. To Martanda ( i.e., Vivasvat,the Sun) was born the wise and mighty Manu, and also the renowned Yama, his (Manu's) younger brother. Righteous was this wise Manu,on whom a race was founded. Hence this (family) of men became known as the race of Manu. Brahmins, Kshatriyas, and other men sprang from this Manu. From him, 0 king, came the Brahmin conjoined with the Kshatriya. Among them the Brahmins, children of Manu, held the Veda with the Vedangas. The children of Manu are said to have been Vena, Dhrishnu, Narishyanta, Nabhaga, Ikshvaku, Karusha, Saryati,IIa the eighth, Prishadra the ninth, who was addicted to the duties of a Kshatriya, and Nabhagarishta, the tenth. Manu had also fifty other sons; but they all, as we have heard, perished in consequence of mutual dissensions. Subsequently, the wise Pururavas was born of IIa, who, we heard, was both his mother and his father."
The Ramayana also deals with the subject of creation. One account of it will be found in the second Kanda. [f32]It says :
"Perceiving Rama to be incensed, Vasishtha replied.' 'Jabali also knows the destruction and renovation of this world. But he spoke as he did from a desire to induce you to return. Learn from me, lord of the earth, this (account of) the origin of the world. The universe was nothing but water. In it the earth was fashioned. Then Brahma Svayambhu came into existence, with the deities. He next, becoming a boar, raised up the earth, and created the entire world, with the saints, his sons, Brahma, the eternal, unchanging, and undecaying, was produced from the ether (akasa). From him sprang Marichi, of whom Kasyapa was the son. From Kasyapa sprang Vivasvat: and from him was descended Manu, who was formerly the lord of creatures (Prajapati). Ikshvaku was the son of Manu, and to him this prosperous earth was formerly given by his father. Know that this lkshvaku was the former king in Ayodhya."
There is besides this another story of creation. It occurs in the third Kanda and is in the following terms:[f33]
"Having heard the words of Rama, the bird (Jatayu) made known to him his own race, and himself, and the origin of all beings. "Listen while I declare to you from the commencement all the Prajapatis (lords of creatures) who came into existence in the earliest time. Kardama was the first, then Vikrita, Sesha, Samsraya, the energetic Bahuputra, Sthanu, Marichi, Atri, the strong Kratu, Pulastya, Angiras, Prachetas, Pulaha, Daksha, then Vivasvat, Arishtanemi, and the glorious Kasyapa, who was the last. The Prajapati Daksha is famed to have had sixty daughters. Of these Kasyapa took in marriage eight elegant maidens, Aditi, Diti, Danu, Kalaka, Tamra, Krodhavasa, Manu and Anala. Kasyapa, pleased, then, said to these maids: ' ye shall bring forth sons like me, preservers of the three worlds.' Aditi, Diti, Danu and Kalaka assented; but the others did not agree. Thirty-three gods were borne by Aditi, the Adityas, Vasus, Rudras, and the two Asvins. 'Manu, (wife) of Kasyapa, produced men. Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas, and Shudras. 'Brahmins were born from the mouth, Kshatriyas from the breast, Vaishyas from the thighs, and Shudras from the feet' so says the Veda. Anala gave birth to all trees with pure fruits."
As an illustration of what the Puranas have to say, I extract the following passages from the Vishnu Purana :[f34]
"Before the mundane egg existed the divine Brahma Hiranyagarbha the eternal originator of all worlds, who was the form and essence of Brahma, who consists of the divine Vishnu, who again is identical with the Rik, Yajus, Saman and Atharva-Vedas. From Brahma's right thumb was born the Prajapati Daksha; Daksha had a daughter Aditi; from her was born Vivasvat; and from him sprang Manu. Manu had sons called lkshvaku, Nriga, Dhrishta, Saryati, Narishyanta, Pramsu, Nabhaganedishta, Karusha, and Prishadhra. Desirous of a son, Manu sacrificed to Mitra and Varuna. but in consequence of a wrong invocation through an irregularity of the hotri-priesta daughter called Ila was born. Then through the favour of Mitra and Varuna she became to Manu a son called Sudyunma. But being again changed into a female through the wrath of lsvara (Mahadeva) she wandered near the hermitage of Budha the son of Soma (the Moon); who becoming enamoured of her had by her a son called Pururavas. After his birth, the god who is formed of sacrifice, of the Rik, Yajus, Saman, and Atharva Vedas, of all things, of mind, of nothing, he who is in the form of the sacrificial Male, was worshipped by the rishis of infinite splendour who desired that Sudyumna should recover his manhood. Through the favour of this god lla became again Sudyumna."
The Vishnu Purana then proceeds to give the following particulars regarding the sons of Manu :
(i) Prishadhra became a Shudra in consequence of his having killed his religious preceptor's cow.
(ii) From Karusha the Karushas.Kshatriyas of great power were descended.
(iii) Nabhaga, the son of Nedishta became a Vaishya."
The above is the story of the Solar race. The Vishnu Purana[f35] has also a parallel story relating to the Lunar race which according to it sprang from Atri just as the Solar race from Manu :
"Atri was the son of Brahma, and the father of Soma (the moon), whom Brahma installed as the sovereign of plants. Brahmins and stars. After celebrating the rajasuya sacrifice, Soma became intoxicated with pride, and carried off Tara (Slar), the wife of Brihaspati, the preceptor of the gods, whom, although admonished and entreated by Brahma, the gods, and rishis, Soma refused to restore. Soma's part was taken by Usanas; and Rudra, who had studied under Angiras, aided Brihaspati. A fierce conflict ensued between the two sides supported respectively by the gods and the Daityas, etc., Biahma interposed, and compelled Soma to restore Tara to her husband. She had, however, in the meantime become pregnant, and bore a son Budha ( the planet Mercury), of whom when strongly urged, she acknowledged Soma to be the . father. Pururavas [f36]was the son of this Budha by lla, the daughter of Manu. Pururavas [f37] had six sons, of whom the eldest was Ayus. Ayus had five sons; Nahusha, Kshattravriddha, Rambha, Raji and Anenas.
Kshattravriddha had a son Sunahotra who had three sons, Kasa, Lesa and Gritsamada. From the last sprang Saunaka, who originated the system of four castes. Kasa had a son, Kasiraja,of whom again Dirghatamas was the son, as Dhanvantari was of Dirghatamas."
Compare these ideologies of creation with those set out in Chapter 2 and what do we find? I think the result of comparison may be set down in the following propositions: (1) one is sacerdotal in colour and character, the other is secular; (2) one refers to a human being Manu as the progenitor, the other refers to God Brahma or Prajapati as the originator; (3) one is historical in its drift, the other is supernatural; (4) one speaks of the deluge, the other is completely silent about it; (5) one aims at explaining the four Varnas, the other aims at explaining the origin of society only.
These differences are many and fundamental. Particularly fundamental seems to be the difference in regard to Chaturvarnya. The sacerdotal ideology recognizes it, but the secular ideology does not. It is true that an attempt is made to combine the two by explaining, as is done in the Ramayana and the Puranas, how Manu's progeny developed into four Varnas. But obviously this is an attempt to mould the two ideologies into one. This attempt is deliberate and calculated. But the difference between the two ideologies is so fundamental that inspite of this attempt they persist as two separate ideologies. All that has happened is that instead of one we have two explanations of Chaturvarnya, supernatural Chaturvarnya produced by Purusha, and natural Chaturvarnya as developed among Manu's sons. That the result should be so clumsy shows that the two ideologies are fundamentally different and irreconcilable.. It is a pity that the existence of two such ideologies recorded in the Brahmanic literature has not been noticed by scholars who have dealt with the subject. But the fact of their existence and their significance cannot be ignored. What is the significance of the existence of two such ideologies fundamentally different and irreconcilable? To me, it seems that they are the ideologies of two different Aryan races one believing in Chaturvarnya and the other not believing in Chaturvarnya who at a later stage became merged into one. If this reasoning is well-founded then this difference in ideologies disclosed by the Brahmanic literature furnishes further evidence in support of the new theory.
The third and the most unimpeachable evidence in support of my view comes from the anthropometrical survey of the Indian people. Such a survey was first made by Sir Herbert Risley in 1901. On the basis of cephalic index, he came to the conclusion that the people of India were a mixture of four different races: (1) Aryan, (2) Dravidian, (3) Mongolian, and (4) Scythian. He even went to the length of defining the areas where they were massed. The survey was a very rough one. His conclusions have been tested by Dr. Guha in 1936. His Report on the subject forms a very valuable document in the field of Indian anthropology. The map[f38] prepared by Dr. Guha on which he has plotted so to say the distribution of the Indian people according to their head measurements throws a flood of light on the racial composition of the people of India. Dr. Guha's conclusion is that the Indian people are composed of two racial stocks: (1) long headed, and short-headed, and that the long-headed are in the interior of India and the short-headed are on the outskirts.
The evidence of skulls found in different parts of India also goes to confirm this. This is how Dr.Guha sums up the evidence on this point:
"The accounts of the human remains from prehistoric sites given above, though extremely meagre, with the exception of those of the Indus Valley, enable us nevertheless to visualise the broad outlines of the racial history of India in these times. From the beginning of the 4th Millennium B.C. Northwestern India seems to have been in the occupation of a long-headed race with a narrow prominent nose. Side by side with them we find the existence of another very powerfully built race also long-headed, but with lower cranial vault, and equally long-faced and narrow nose, though the latter was not so high pitched as that of the former.
A third type with broader head and apparently Armenoid affinities also existed, but its advent occurred probably somewhat later judged by the age of the site as Harappa from which most of these latter type of skulls came."
Speaking in terms of the Alpine and the Mediterranean race, one can say that the Indian people are composed of two stocks: (1) The Mediterranean or the long-headed race, and (2) the Alpine or the short-headed race.
About the Mediterranean race, certain facts are admitted. It is admitted that it is a race which spoke the Aryan language. It is admitted that its home was in Europe round about the Mediterranean basin and from thence it migrated to India. From its localisation, it is clear that it must have come to India before the entry of the Alpine race.
Similar facts about the Alpine race remain to be ascertained. First is about the home of the Alpine race and second is about its native speech. According to Prof. Ripley, the home of the Alpine race was in Asia somewhere in the Himalayas. His reasons may be given in his own words. Says Prof. Ripley :[f39]
"What right have we for the assertion that this infiltration of population from the East- it was not a conquest, everything points to it as a gradual peaceful immigration, often merely the settlement of unoccupied territorymarks the advent of an overflow from the direction of Asia? The proof of this rests largely upon our knowledge of the people of that continent, especially of the Pamir region, the Western Himalayan highlands. Just here on the ' roof of the world,' where Max Muller and the early philologists placed the primitive home of Aryan civilisation, a human type prevails which tallies almost exactly with our ideal Alpine or Celtic European race. The researches of De Ujfaivy, Topinard, and others localise its peculiar traits over a vast territory hereabouts. The Galchas, mountain Tadjiks, and their fellows are grey-eyed, dark-haired, stocky in build, with cephalic indexes ranging above 86 for the most part. From this region a long chain of peoples of a similar physical type extends.uninterruptedly westward over Asia Minor and into Europe. The only point which the discovery of a broad area in Western Asia occupied by an ideal Alphine type settles, is that it emphasises the affinities of this peculiar race. It is no proof of direct immigration from Asia at all, as Tappeiner observes. It does, however, lead us to turn our eyes eastward when we seek for the origin of the broad-headed type. Things vaguely point to an original ethnic base of supplies somewhere in this direction. It could not lie westward, for everywhere along the Atlantic the race slowly disappears, so to speak. That the Alpine type approaches all the other human millions on the Asiatic continent, in the head form especially, but in hair, colour and stature as well, also prejudices us in the matter; just as the increasing long-headedness and extreme brunetness of our Mediterranean race led us previously to derive it from some type parent to that of the African Negro. These points are then fixed; the roots of the Alpine race run eastward; those of the Mediterranean type towards the south."
On the question of its language there is a certain amount of dispute[f40] as to who introduced the Aryan language in Europe, whether the Nordics (the purest of the Indo-Germans) or the Alpines. But there is no dispute that the language of the Alpine race was Aryan and therefore it is entitled to be called Aryan race in philological sense.
From the foregoing statement of facts, it will be seen that there is a solid foundation in anthropometry and history, in support of the Rig Veda that there were in India two Aryan races and not one. Having regard to this, one cannot refuse to admit that here there is a direct conflict between the Western theory and the testimony of the Rig Veda. Whereas the Western theory speaks of one Aryan race, the Rig Veda speaks of two Aryan races. The Western theory is thus in conflict with the Rig Veda on a major issue. The Rig Veda being the best evidence on the subject the theory which is in conflict with it must be rejected. There is no escape.
This conflict on the major issue also creates a conflict on the issue of invasion and conquest. We do not know which of the two Aryan races came to India first. But if they belonged to the Alpine race then its home being near the Himalayas, there is no room for the theory of invasion from outside. As to the conquest of the native tribes, assuming it to be a fact, the matter is not quite so simple as Western writers have supposed. On the footing that the Dasas and Dasyus were racially different from the Aryans, the theory of conquest must take account not merely of a possible conquest of Dasas and Dasyus by Aryans but also of a possible conquest of Aryans by Aryans. It must also explain which of the two Aryans conquered the Dasas and Dasyus if they conquered them at all.
The Western theory, it is clear, is only a hurried conclusion drawn from insufficient examination of facts and believed to be correct because it tallied with certain pre-conceived notions about the mentality of the ancient Aryans which they were supposed to have possessed on no other grounds except that their alleged modern descendants, namely, the Indo Germanic races are known to possess. It is built on certain selected facts which are assumed to be the only facts. It is extraordinary that a theory with such a slender and insecure foundation in fact should have been propounded by Western scholars for serious scholars and should have held the field for such a long time. In the face of the discovery of new facts set out in this Chapter the theory can no longer stand and must be thrown on the scrap heap.
"The Dasas and the Dasyus were either savages ornon-Vedic Aryan tribes. Those of them that were captured in war were probably made slaves and formed the Shudra caste."
Mr. Kane[f42]another Vedic scholar and upholder of the Western theory, holds the view that :
"The word 'Dasa' in later literature means a 'scrf or a slave'. It follows that the Dasa tribes that we see opposed to the Aryas in the Rig Veda were gradually vanquished and were then made to serve the Aryas. In the Manusmriti (VIII, 413) the Shudra is said to have been created by God for service (dasya) of the Brahmana. We find in the Tai. Samhita, the Tai. Brahmana and other Brahmana works that the Shudra occupied the same position that he does in the Smritis. Therefore it is reasonable to infer that the Dasas or Dasyus conquered by the Aryans were gradually transformed into the Shudras."
According to this view the Shudras are the same as Dasas and Dasyus and further the Shudras were the non-Aryan original inhabitants of India and were in a primitive and a savage state of civilisation. It is these propositions which we must now proceed to examine.
To begin with the first proposition. It is not one proposition but is really two propositions rolled in one. One is that the Dasas and Dasyus are one and the same people. The other is that they and the Shudras are one and the same people.
That the Dasas and Dasyus are one and the same people is a proposition of doubtful validity. Such references to them as are to be found in the Rig Veda are not decisive. In some places the terms Dasa and Dasyu are used in a way as though there was no difference between the two. Shambara, Shushna, Vritra and Pipru are described both as Dasas and Dasyus. Both Dasas and Dasyus are described as the enemies of Indra and Devas and specially the Ashvins. The cities of both Dasas as well as of the Dasyus are described to have been levelled down by Indra and Devas. The defeat of both Dasas as well as Dasyus is described as producing the same effect, namely, release of water and the emergence of light. In describing the release of Dabhiti both are referred to, at one place he is said to have been released from the Dasas and at another place he is said to have been released from the Dasyus.
While these references suggest that the Dasas and Dasyus were the same, there are other references which suggest that they were different. This is clear from the fact that the Dasas are referred to separately in 54 places and Dasyus are referred to separately in 78 places. Why should there be so many separate references if they did not form two distinct entities? The probability is that they refer to two different communities.
About the second proposition that the Shudras are the same as the Dasas and Dasyus, one can definitely say that it is without any foundation whatsoever.
To make out a case that the Shudras are the same as the Dasas and Dasyus an attempt is made to treat the word Shudra as a derivative word. The word is said to be derived from Shuc (sorrow) and dm (overcome) and means one overcome by sorrow. In this connection reliance is placed on the story told in the Vedanta Sutra (i.3.34) of Janasruti who is said to have been overcome by sorrow on hearing the contemptuous talk of the flamingoes about himself. [f43]The same derivation is given by the Vishnu Purana.[f44]
How far are these statements well-founded? To say that Shudra is not a proper name but is a derivative word is too silly for words. The Brahmanic writers excel everybody in the art of inventing false etymologies. There is no word for which they will not design some sort of etymology. Speaking of the different etymologies of the word Upanishad given by Brahmanic writers, Prof. Max Muller [f45]said :
"These explanations seem so wilfully perverse that it is difficult to understand the unanimity of native scholars. We ought to take into account, however, that very general tendency among half-educated people, to acquiesce in any etymology which accounts for the most prevalent meaning of a word. The Aranyakas abound in such etymologies, which probably were never intended as real etymologies, in our sense of the word, but simply as plays on words, helping to account somehow for their meaning."
This warning equally well applies to the attempt of the Vedanta Sutra and of the Vayu Purana to make the word Shudra a derivative word suggesting that it meant a 'sorrowful people' and we must therefore reject it as being absund and senseless.
We have, however, direct evidence in support of the proposition that Shudra is a proper name of a tribe or a clan and is not a derivative word as is sought to be made out.
Various pieces of evidence can be adduced in favour of this proposition. The historians of Alexander's invasion of India have described a number of republics as free, independent and autonomous whom Alexander encountered. These are, no doubt, formed of different tribes and were known by the name borne by those tribes. Among these is mentioned a people called Sodari. They were a fairly important tribe, being one of those which fought Alexander though it suffered a defeat at his hands. Lassen identified them with the ancient Shudras. Patanjali at 1.2.3 of his Mahabhasya mentions Shudras and associates them with the Abhiras. The Mahabharata in Chapter XXXII of the Sabha parvan speaks of the republic of the Shudras. The Vishnu Purana as well as the Markandeya Purana and the Brahma Purana refer to the Shudras as a separate tribe among many other tribes and fix their location in the Western part of the country above the Vindhyas.[f46]
Let us now turn to the second proposition and examine the various elements of which it is composed. There are two elements in the proposition. First is : Are the words Dasyus and Dasas used in the racial sense indicative of their being non-Aryan tribes? The second element is that assuming they were, is there anything to indicate that they were the native tribes of India? Unless and until these two questions are answered in the affirmative, there is no possibility of identifying the Dasyus and Dasas with the Shudras.
About the Dasyus, there is no evidence to show that the term is used in a racial sense indicative of a non-Aryan people. On the other hand, there is positive evidence in support of the conclusion that it was used to denote persons who did not observe the Aryan form of religion. In this connection, reference may be made to Verse 23 of Adhyaya 65 of the Shantiparvan of the Mahabharata. It reads as follows:
Driushyante manushe leeke sarvavarneshu dasyavah !
Linganntharey varthamana ashrameshuchathushrvapi !!
The verse says : "In all the Vamas and in all the Ashramas, one finds the existence of Dasyus."
What is the origin of the word Dasyu it is difficult to say. But a suggestion[f47] has been put forth that it was the word of abuse used by the Indo-Aryans to the Indo-lranians. There is nothing unnatural or far-fetched in this suggestion. That the two had come into conflict is borne out by history. It is therefore quite possible for the Indo-Aryans to have coined such a contemptuous name for their enemies. If this is true, then Dasyus cannot be regarded as the natives of India.
Regarding the Dasas, the question is whether there is any connection between them and the Azhi-Dahaka of the Zend Avesta. The name Azhi-Dahaka is a compound name which consists of two parts. Azhi means serpent, dragon and Dahaka comes from root Dah meaning ' to sting, to do harm'. Thus Azhi-Dahaka meaning a stinging dragon. It is a proper name of a person commonly known in Indo-Iranian traditions as Zohak. He is mentioned in Yasht literature many a times. He is credited to have lived in Babylon where he had built a palace. He is also credited to have built a great observatory in Babylon. This mighty devil Azhi-Dahaka was created by the Archdemon Angra Mainyu in order to destroy the kingdom of holiness of the corporeal world. This Azhi-Dahaka went to war against Yima the renowned king of the Indo-lranians and not only vanquished him, but killed him in battle.
Yima is always spoken of in Avesta as Kshaeta meaning shining or ruling. Root Kshi has two meanings, to shine or to rule. There is another ephithet commonly used for Yima and that is Hvanthwa meaning 'possessing good flock'. This Avesta Yima Khshaita became in later Persian language Jamshid. According to traditions, king Jamshid son of Vivanghvant was the great hero of the Iranian history, the founder of a great Persian civilization. He was a king of the Peshdiadyan dynasty. In Yasna 9 and 5 (Koema Yashi) it is stated that 'Vivanshas' was the first man who unceremoniously pounded Hasma (Sk. Sasma) in this corporeal world and the boon he received was: to him was born a son nobly who was Yima the shining and of good flock, who was most glorious amongst the living ones, who was like a glowing sun amongst mankind, during whose kingship he made noblemen and cattle (animals) immortal, made waters and trees undrying. He possessed undiminishing (ever fresh) divine glory. During the kingship of famous Yima there was neither extreme cold nor extreme heat, there was no old age, death and envy.
Is Dahaka of the Zenda Aveshta the same as Dasa of the Rig Veda? If similarity in name can be relied upon as evidence, then obviously it points to their being the names of one and the same person. Dasa in Sanskrit can easily be Daha in Aveshta since sa in the former is natural conversion to ha in the latter. If this were the only evidence the suggestion that Dasa of the Rig Veda and Dahaka of the Zenda Avesta are the same could have been no better than a conjecture. But there is other and more cogent evidence which leaves no doubt about their identity. In Yasna Ha 9 (which is the same as Horn Yashe) Azhi-Dahaka is spoken of as 'three mouthed, three-headed and six-eyed'. What is striking is that this physical description of Dahaka in Aveshta is exactly similar to the description of Dasa'in Rig Veda (x.99.6) where he is also described as having three heads and six eyes [f48] If the suggestion that the Dasa in the Rig Veda is the same as Dahaka in the Aveshta, is accepted, then obviously the Dasas were not native tribes aboriginal to India.
Were they savages? The Dasas and Dasyus were not a primitive people. They were as civilised as the Aryans and in fact more powerful than the Aryans. Such is the testimony of the Rig Veda. It is well epitomised by Mr. lyengar when he says that :
"The Dasyus lived in cities (R.V., i.53.8; i. 103.3) and under kings the names of many of whom are mentioned. They possessed 'accumulated wealth' (R.V., viii.40.6) in the form of cows, horses and chariots (R.V., ii. 15.4) which though kept in 'hundred-gated cities' (R.V., X.99.3), Indra seized and gave away to his worshippers, the Aryas (R.V., i.l76.4). The Dasyus were wealthy (R.V., i.33.4) and owned property 'in the plains and on the hills' (R.V., x.69.6).They were 'adorned with their array of gold and jewels' (R.V., i.33.8). They owned many castles (R.V., i.33.13; viii.l7.14). The Dasyu demons and the Arya gods alike lived in gold, silver and iron castles (SS.S., vi.23; A.V., v.28.9; R.V., ii.20.8). Indra overthrew for his worshipper, Divodasa, frequently mentioned in the hymns, a 'hundred stone castles' (R.V., iv.30.20) of the Dasyus. Agni, worshipped by the Arya, gleaming in behalf of him, tore and burnt the cities of the fireless Dasyus. (R.V., vii.5.3).Brihaspati broke the stone prisons in which they kept the cattle raided from the Aryas (R.V., iv.67.3). The Dasyus owned chariots and used them in war like the Aryas and had the same weapons as the Aryas (R.V., viii.24.27; iii.30.5; ii.l5.4)"
That the Dasas and Dasyus were the same as the Shudras is a pure figment of imagination. It is only a wild guess. It is tolerated because persons who make it are respectable scholars. So far as evidence is concerned, there is no particle of it, which can be cited in support of it. As has been said before, the word Dasa occurs in the Rig Veda 54 times and Dasyu 78 times. The Dasas and the Dasyus are sometimes spoken together. The word Shudra occurs only once and that too in a context in which the Dasas and Dasyus have no place. In the light of these considerations, it is difficult to say how anyone in his senses can say that Shudras are the same as the Dasas and Dasyus. Another fact which is to be noted is that the names Dasas and Dasyus completely disappear from the later Vedic literature. It means they were completely absorbed by the Vedic Aryans. But it is quite different with the Shudras. The early Vedic literature is very silent about them. But the later Vedic literature is full of them. This shows that the Shudras were different from the Dasas and Dasyus.
Were the Shudras non-Aryans? Mr. Kane says[f49]
"A clear line of demarcation was kept between the Arya and the Shudra in the times of the Brahmana works and even in the Dharmasutras. The Tandya Brahmana speaks of a mock fight : 'the Shudra and Arya fight on a hide; out of the two they so arrange that the Arya colour becomes the victor.' The Ap. Dh. S. (I, i.3.40-41) says that a brahmachari if he cannot himself eat all the food he has brought by begging, may keep it near an Arya (for his use) or he may give it to a Shudra who is a Dasa (of his teacher). Similarly, Gautama x.69 used the word 'anarya' for Shudra."
On the question of the line of demarcation; between the Shudras and Aryans, the matter needs to be carefully examined.
The strength of the argument that the Shudras were non-Aryans is to be found in the following statements :
A.V., iv.20.4. "The thousand-eyed god shall put this plant into my right hand; with that do I see everyone, the Shudra as well as the Arya."
Kathaka Samhita, xxxiv.5 "The Shudra and the Arya quarrel about the skin. The gods and the demons quarrelled about the sun; the gods won it (the sun). (By this act of quarrelling with Shudras) the Arya makes the Arya Varna win, makes himself successful. The Arya shall be inside the .altar, the Shudra outside the altar. The skin shall be white, circular- the form of the sun."
Vajasaneyi Samhita, xxiii.30 -31 "When a deer eats the barley in the field, the (owner of the field) is not pleased with the nourished animal; when a Shudra woman has an Arya as a lover, (the husband) does not long for (the consequent) prosperity."
When a deer eats barley, the (owner of the field) does not approve of the nourished animal. When a Shudra is the lover of an Arya woman, the (husband) does not consent to the prosperity.
These stanzas, which speak of the Shudra and the Arya as separate and opposed form the foundation of the theory that the Shudras are non-Aryans. To say the least, such a conclusion would be a very hasty one. Two considerations must be borne in mind before any conclusion is drawn from the aforementioned statements. In the first place, it must be borne in mind that according to what has been said before and according to the evidence of the Rig Veda, there are two categories of Aryans, the Vedic and the non-Vedic. Given this fact, it would be quite easy for an Arya of one class to speak of an Arya of another class, as though the two were separate and opposed. Interpreted in this way, the above statements, in which Shudras are set against the Aryans, do not mean that they were not Aryas. They were Aryas of a different sect or class.
That this is possible can be seen from the following statements in the sacred literature of the Hindus:
(1) A.V., xix.32.8. "Make me. Oh, Darbha (grass), dear to the Brahmin, and the Rajanya (i.e., Kshalriya), to the Shudra and to the Arya and to him whom we love and to everyone who is able to see."
(2) A.V., xix.62.1. "Make me beloved among the gods, make me beloved among the princes; make me dear to everyone who sees, to the Shudra and to the Arya."
(3) Vajasaneyi Samhita, xviii.48. "(Oh, Agni), give to us lustre among Brahmins, give us lustre among kings; lustre among Vaishyas and among Shudras; give to me lustre added to lustre." ,
(4) Vajasaneyi Samhita, xx.l7. "Whatever sin we have committed in the village, in the forest, in the assembly, with our senses, against the Shudra or against the Arya, whatever sin one of us (two, the sacrificer and his wife) has committed in the matter of his duty (towards the other), of that sin, you are the destroyer."
(5) Vajasaneyi Samhita, xviii.48. "As I speak these auspicious words to the people, to the Brahmin and the Rajanya, to the Shudra and to the Arya and to my own enemy, may I be dear to the gods and to the giver of dakshinas here in this world. May this desire of mine be granted. May that (enemy of mine) be subjected to me."
What do these statements show? The first one makes a distinction between the Brahmins and the Aryas. Can it be said that the Brahmins were non-Aryans? The other statements pray for the love and goodwill of the Shudras. If the Shudra was a primitive aboriginal non-Aryan, is such a prayer conceivable? The statements on which reliance is placed do not prove that the Shudras were non-Aryans.
That the Dharma Sutras call the Shudra Anarya and the statements in the Vajasaneyi Samhita pouring scorn on the Shudra woman, do not mean anything. There are two arguments against accepting the testimony of the Dharma Sutra. In the first place, as will be shown later, the Dharma Sutras and other treatises are books written by the enemies of the Shudra. As such, they have no evidentiary value. It is also doubtful whether such anti-Shudra statements are mere imprecations or statements of facts as they existed. They seem to contradict facts reported in other works.
The Dharma Sutras say that a Shudra is not entitled to the Upanayana ceremony and the wearing of the sacred thread. But in Samskara Ganapati there is an express provision declaring the Shudra to be eligible for Upanayana.[f50]
The Dharma Sutras say that a Shudra has no right to study the Vedas. But the Chhandogya Upanishad (iv:l-2) relates the story of one Janasruti to whom Veda Vidya was taught by the preceptor Raikva. This Janasruti was a Shudra. What is more is that Kavasha Ailusha,[f51] was a Shudra. He was a Rishi and the author of several hymns of the Tenth Book of the Rig Veda.
The Dharma Sutras say that a Shudra has no right to perform Vedic ceremonies and sacrifices. But Jaimini, the author of the Purva Mimarnsa[f52] mentions an ancient teacher by name Badari whose work is lost as an exponent of the contrary view that even Shudras could perform Vedic sacrifices. The Bharadvaja Srauta Sutra (v.28) admits that there exists another school of thought which holds that a Shudra can consecrate the three sacred fires necessary for the performance of a Vedic sacrifice. Similarly, the commentator of the Katyayana Srauta Sutra (1.4.16) admits that there are certain Vedic texts which lead to the inference that the Shudra was eligible to perform Vedic rites.
The Dharma Sutras say that a Shudra is not entitled to the sacred drink of Soma. But in the story of the Ashvins, there is definite evidence that the Shudra had a right to the divine drink of Soma. The Ashvins, as the story goes, once happened to behold Sukanya when she had just bathed and when her person was bare. She was a young girl married to a Rishi by name Chyavana who at the time of marriage was so old as to be dying almost any day. The Ashvins were captivated by the beauty of Sukanya and said "Accept one of us for your husband. It behoveth thee not to spend thy youth fruitlessly." She refused, saying "I am devoted to my husband." They again spoke to her and this time proposed a bargain: "We two are the celestial physicians of note. We will make thy husband young and graceful. Do thou then select one of us as thy husband." She went to her husband and communicated to him the terms of the bargain. Chyavana said to Sukanya "Do thou so"; and the bargain was carried out and Chyavana was made a young man by the Ashvins. Subsequently, a question arose whether the Ashvins were entitled to Soma, which was the drink of the Gods. Indra objected saying that the Ashvins were Shudras and therefore not entitled to Soma. Chyavana, who had received perpetual youth from the Ashvins, set aside the contention and compelled Indra to give them Soma.[f53]
There is another reason why the evidence of the Dharma Sutras that the Shudras are non-Aryans should not be accepted. In the first place, it is contrary to the view taken by Manu. In the decision of the issue whether the Shudra was an Aryan or a non-Aryan, the following verses from Manu require to be carefully considered :
"If a female of the caste sprung from a Brahmana and a Shudra female, bear (children) to one of the highest castes, the inferior (tribe) attains the highest caste within the seventh generation."
"(Thus) a Shudra attains the rank of a Brahmana and (in a similar manner) a Brahmana sinks to the level of a Shudra; but know that it is the same with the offspring of a Kshatriya or of a Vaishya."
"If (a doubt) should arise, with whom the pre-eminence (is, whether) with him whom an Aryan by chance begot on a non-Aryan female, or (with the son) of a Brahmana woman by a non-Aryan;"
The decision is as follows : 'He who was begotten by an Aryan on a non-Aryan female, may become (like to) an Aryan by his virtues; he whom an Aryan (mother) bore to a non Aryan father (is and remains) unlike to an Aryan.' " [f54]
Verse 64 from Manu is also to be found in Gautama Dharma Sutra (uv.22). There seems to be some controversy as to the correct interpretation of this verse. In summing up the different interpretations, Buhler says:
"According to Medh., Gov., Kull., and Ragh., the meaning is that, if the daughter of a Brahmana and of a Shudra female and her descendants all marry Brahmanas, the offspring of the sixth female descendant of the original couple will be a Brahmana. While this explanation agrees with Haradatta's comment on the parallel passage of Gautama, Nar. and Nan. take the verse very differently. They say that if a Parasava, the son of a Brahmana and of a Shudra female, marries a most excellent Parasava female, who possesses a good moral character and other virtues, and if his descendants do the same, the child born in the sixth generation will be a Brahmana. Nandana quotes in support of his view, Baudhayana i. 16.13-14 (left out in my translation of the Sacred Books of the East, ii, p. 197)... '(offspring) begotten by a Nishada on a Nishadi, removes within five generations the Shudrahood; one may initiate him (the fifth descendant); one may sacrifice for the sixth.' This passage of Baudhayana the reading of which is supported by a new MS from Madras clearly shows that Baudhayana allowed the male offspring of Brahmanas and Shudra females to be raised to the level of Aryans. It is also not impossible that the meaning of Manu's verse may be the same, and that the translation should be, 'if the offspring of a Brahmana and of a Shudra female begets children with a most excellent (male of the Brahmana caste or female of the Parasava tribe), the inferior (tribe) attains the highest caste in the seventh generation."
Whatever be the interpretation, the fact remains that in the seventh generation[f55]a Shudra under certain circumstances could become a Brahmin. Such a conception would have been impossible if the Shudra was not an Aryan.
That the Shudra is a non-Aryan is contrary to the view taken by the school of Arthashastra. As a representative of that school, the opinion of Kautilya on that question is of great value. In laying down the law of slavery, Kautilya says:[f56]
The selling or mortgaging by kinsmen of the life of a Shudra who is not a born slave, and has not attained majority, but is Arya in birth shall be punished with a fine of 12 panas.
Deceiving a slave of his money or depriving him of the privileges he can exercise as an Arya (Aryabhava) shall be punished with half the fine (levied for enslaving the life of an Arya).
Failure to set a slave at liberty on the receipt of a required amount of ransom shall be punished with a fine of 12 panas; putting a slave under confinement for no reason (samrodhaschakaranat ) shall likewise be punished.
The offspring of a man who has sold himself off as a slave shall be an Arya. A slave shall be entitled not only to what he has earned himself without prejudice to his masters work but also to the inheritance he has received from his father.
Here is Kautilya, who calls the Shudra an Aryan in the most emphatic and express terms possible.
Coming to the question of Shudras having been made slaves, it is nonsense, if not mendacious. It is founded on two assumptions. First is that the Dasas are described as slaves in the Rig Veda. The second is that the Dasas are the same as Shudras.
It is true that the word Dasa is used in the Rig Veda in the sense of slave or servant. But the word in this sense occurs in only 5 places and no more. But even if it did occur more than five times, would it prove that the Shudras were made slaves? Unless and until it is proved that the two were the same people, the suggestion is absurd. It is contrary to known facts.
Shudras participated in the coronation of kings. In the post-vedic or the period of the Brahmanas, the coronation of a king was in reality an offer of sovereignty by the people to the king. This was done by the representatives of the people called Ratnis who played a very important part in the investiture of the king. The Ratnis were so-called because they held the Ratna (jewel), which was a symbol of sovereignty. The king received his sovereignty only when the Ratnis handed over to him the jewel of sovereignty, and on receiving his sovereignty the king went to the house of each of the Ratnis and made an offering to him. It is a significant fact that one of the Ratnis was always a Shudra.[f57]
Nilakantha, the author of Nitimayukha, describes the coronation ceremony of a later time. According to him, the four chief ministers, Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra, consecrated the new king. Then the leaders of each Varna and of the castes lower still, consecrated him with holy water. Then followed acclamation by the twice-born.[f58]
That the Shudras were invited to be present at the coronation of the king along with Brahmins is evidenced by the description of the coronation of Yudhishthira, the eldest brother of the Pandavas, which is given in the Mahabharata.[f59]
Shudras were members of the two political assemblies of ancient times, namely, the Janapada and Paura and as a member of these the Shudra was entitled to special respect even from a Brahmin.[f60]
This was so even according to the Manusmriti (vi.61) as well as to the Vishnu Smriti (xxi.64). Otherwise there is no meaning in Manu saying that a Brahmin should not live in a country where the king is a Shudra. That means Shudras were kings.
In the Shanti Parvan of the Mahabharata,[f61] Bhishma in his lessons on Politics to Yudhishthira says :
"I shall, however, tell thee what kinds of ministers should be appointed by thee. Four Brahmins learned in the Vedas, possessed of a sense of dignity, belonging to the Snataka order, and of pure behaviour, and eight Kshatriyas, all of whom should be possessed of physical strength and capable of weilding weapons, and one and twenty Vaishyas, all of whom should be possessed of wealth, and three Shudras, everyone of whom should be humble and of pure conduct and devoted to his daily duties, and one man of the Suta caste, possessed of a knowledge of the Puranas and the eight cardinal virtues should be thy ministers."
This proves that the Shudras were ministers and that they were almost equal to the Brahmins in number[f62]
The Shudras were not poor and lowly. They were rich. This fact is testified by the Maitrayani Samhita (iv.2.7.10) and the Panchavirnsa Brahmana (vi.l.ll).[f63]
There are two other aspects to this question. What significance can there be to the enslavement of the Shudras, assuming it was a fact? There would be some significance if the Aryans did not know slavery or were not prepared to turn the Aryans into slaves. But the fact is that the Aryans knew slavery and permitted the Aryans to be made slaves. This is clear from Rig Veda, (vii.86.7;viii. 19.36 and viii.56.3).
That being so, why should they particularly want to make slaves of the Shudras? What is more important is why should they make different laws for the Shudra slaves?
In short, the Western theory does not help us to answer our questions, who were the Shudras and how did they become the fourth Varna?
[f1]I Ripley W. E., The Races of Europe, p. 400.
[f2]1 Ripley, Races of Europe, p. 121.
[f3]2 lbid Vol. 1. p. 121
[f4]I Biography of Words, pp. 89 and 120-21.
[f5]For a list of the references in the Rig Veda, see Apendix 1.
[f6]For a list of references showing in which place the word is used and in what sense, i.e. Appendix II
[f7]3 For a list of references, see Appendix til
[f8]1 Issac Taylor, The Origin of the Aryans, pp. 24-26.
[f9]2 Ripley : Races of Europe, pp. 436-437.
[f10]I Tilak B. G The Arctic Home in the Vedas, 58-60.
[f11]1 See Yajur Veda with Madhavachrya's Bhashya
[f12]2 Life in Ancient India in the Age of the Mantras, pp. 11-12.
[f13]I The Original Home of the Aryans' by D. S. Triveda, Annals of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, Vol. XX, p. 62.
[f14]2 lyengar, lbid., p. 13.
[f15]1 For a discussion as to who the Dasas and Dasyus were, see Chapter 6
[f16]2 For a discussion whether in their origin the European races were white or dark see the observations of Prof. Ripley, infra, p. 76.
[f17]I Prof. Ripley : Races of Europe, p. 466 Vol-VII- 8
[f18]1 On what follows, see Maharashtra Dnyanakosha, Vol. III. pp. 39-42
[f19]2 See Appendix IV. p. 248.
[f20]1 The information relating to lhe meaning of the word 'Varna' in the Indo-lranian literature, I owe to my friend Dastur Bode, who is well-versed in it
[f21]1 Murir, Vol. I, p. 26.
[f22]1 Muir, Vol. I, p. 30
[f23]2 Muir, Vol. I, p. 24.
[f24]3 Muir. Vol. I, p. 31.
[f25]4 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 25.
[f26]1 Muir, Vol. 1. pp. 28-29
[f27]2 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 23
[f28]1 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 21
[f29]2 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 32
[f30]1 Muir, Vol. I, pp. 199-201.
[f31]1 Muir, Vol. I, pp. 122-126
[f32]1 Muir, Vol. I, p. 115.
[f33]1 Muir, I, p. 116.
[f34]2 Muir, Vol. I, pp. 220-221.
[f35]1 Muir, Vol. 1, pp. 225-226
[f36]2 The loves of Puniravas and the Apsara Urvasi, are related in the Satapatha Brahmanas, xi. 5.1.11; in the Vishnu Purana, vi. 6.19. ff; in the Bhagavata Purana, ix. 14; and in the Harivamsa, section 26. The Mahabharata, Adip, section 75, alludes to Pururavas as having been engaged in a contest with the Brahmins. This passage will be quoted hereafter.
[f37]3 Vishnu Purana, iv.7.1
[f38]1 See Appendix V
[f39]2 Races of Europe, pp. 473-74
[f40]I Madison Grant, The Passing of the Great Race' (1922), pp. 238-239.
[f41]1 Rig Vidic Culture, p. 133.
[f42]2 Dharma Shastra, II (1). p. 33
[f43]1 Referred to in Kane's Dharma Shastra, II (I), p. 155
[f44]2 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 97
[f45]3 Upanishads, Introduction, pp. lxxix-lxxxi
[f46]I See References in Tribes in Ancient India by B. C. Law, p. 350
[f47]I I am sorry. I have lost the reference.
[f48]I For the identification of Dasa with Dahaka I am indebted to the Maharashtra Dnyana Kosha, Vol. III, p. 53
[f49]1 Kane, Dharma Shastra, II (I), p. 35.
[f50]I Referred to by Max Muller. in Ancient Sanskrit Literature (1860). p. 207
[f51]2 lbid, p. 58.
[f52]3 Adhyaya 6, Pada I, Sutra 27
[f53]I V. Fausboll, Indian Mythology, pp. 128-134
[f54]Chapter X, verses 64-67.
[f55]The rule which requires that for establishing his nobility a man must be able to trace his six uninterrupted degrees of unsullied lineage of not merely free-born, but full-born, appears to be a universal rule in ancient times.See W. E. Hearn, The Aryan Household, Chapter VIII.
[f56]Book III, Chapter 13
[f57]1 On this point see Jayasswal, Hindu Polity (1943), pp. 200-201
[f58]1 See Jayasswal, Hindu Polity (1943), p. 223
[f59]2 Mohabharata, Sabha Parvan, Chapter XXXIII, Verses 41-42
[f60]3 See Jayasswal, -Hindu Polity, p. 248.
[f61]4 Roy's Translation, Vol. II, p. 197
[f62]5 Bhishma believed in communal representation.
[f63]6 Referred to in the Vedic Index, Vol. II, p. 390.