Saturday, August 31, 2013


Caste helped in protecting the vast majority of Indian population living in villages against MORAL CORRUPTION.

The British planter, Robert H Elliot,(1837-1914) who by virtue of  his isolation from other whites, had to socialize with the natives of Mysore (now Karnataka) ,and had reached “intimate terms’ with them in the later half of the 19th century. During his plantation career in Mysore which lasted for 38 years, he had  employed a large number of the poorer of the better(upper) castes in various capacities, as well as
a large number of Pariahs or  labourer caste on his coffee estate.  Due to these circumstances of his living in Mysore, he was  confident that he became suitably qualified to be ‘a tolerably competent  judge as to whether  CASTE did or did not exercise  a favorable  influence on the morals of the people”.

In the following passages, he argues that CASTE helped preserve the morals of the people and prevented/protected  them, from taking to the vices of their conquerors, including the White Men.
Further he brings to our attention the sad plight of the Todas of the Nilgiris, who were outside the pale of Caste, and thereby loosing its various  advantages. And he cites  that in the case of the Coorgis, caste was never a  hindrance in education of its female members.

Excerpts : Having taken into consideration the advantages of caste in acting as a moral restraint amongst the Indians themselves, I now purpose to inquire how far caste has acted advantageously, or the reverse, in segregating the people
socially from the conquerors who have overrun their country.

If the advantages of caste are striking and plainly apparent as regards the moral points I have alluded to, (ie absence of sexual promiscuity and alcoholism amongst caste members) they seem to me to be infinitely more so when we come to consider the happy influence this institution has had in segregating the Indians from the white races. And here, I cannot help indulging in a vain regret that the blessings of caste have not been universally diffused amongst all inferior races. How many of these has our boasted civilization improved off the face of the earth? How much has that tide of civilization which the first conquerors invariably bring with them effected? How much, in other words, have their vice, rum, and gunpowder helped to exterminate those unhappy
races which, unprotected by caste, have come in contact with the white man? Nor in India itself are we altogether without a well-marked instance of the value, for a time at least, of an entire social separation between the dark and white races; and the Todas, the lords of the soil on the Nilgiri Hills, furnish us with a lamentable example of what the absence of caste feeling is capable of producing. We found them a simple pastoral
race, and the early visitors to the hills were struck with their inoffensive manners, and what was falsely
considered to be their greatest advantage—freedom from caste associations. But what is their condition now? One of drunkenness, debauchery, and disease of the most fatal description.  (sexual diseases ?) Had the much-reviled caste law been theirs, what a different result would have ensued from their contact with Europeans!  Caste would have saved them from alcohol, and their women  from contamination: they would thus have maintained their self-respect; and if, at first, separation brought no progress nor shadow of change, it would have at least induced NO evil, and education and enlightenment would in time have modified these caste institutions, which, to a
superficial observer, seem to be productive of nothing but evil.

We have now seen that social contact with whites, without any barrier between them and the inferior races, is not, in a moral point of view, a very desirable thing in any part of the world. But if there is a moral consequence, we may also point to a mental one, which exercises an immense influence: I mean the overwhelming sense of inferiority which is so apt to depress casteless races. I believe, then, for savages, or for people in a low state of civilization, it is of the greatest importance that they should have points of difference which may not only keep them socially apart, but which may enable them to maintain some feeling of superiority when coming in contact with highly-civilized races. Nor is it necessary that the feeling of superiority should be well
founded. An imaginary superiority will, I believe, answer the purpose equally well. We dont  touch beef, nor would  we touch food  cooked by Englishmen or Pariahs.seem but poor matters for self -congratulation. But if these considerations prevent a man from forming a poor opinion of himself, they should be carefully cherished. On these points, at least, a feeling of superiority is sustained, and therefore the tendency to degradation is diminished. But if on all points the white man makes his superiority felt, the weaker people speedily acquire a thorough contempt for themselves, and soon become careless of what they do, or of what becomes of them. Their mental spring becomes fatally depressed, and this circumstance has probably more to do with the deterioration and extinction of inferior races than most people would be inclined to admit.
[vide  Sproats  Studies of Savage Life] Nothing, then, I believe, chills the soul and checks the progress of man so much as a hopeless sense of inferiority; and, had I time, I might turn the attention of the reader to the universality of this law, and to the numerous instances that have been collected to prove the depressing and injurious effects that even nature, on a grand and overwhelming scale, seems to exercise on the mind and spirit of man—how it makes him timid, credulous, and superstitious, and produces effects which retard his progress. But to advance further to this point , however interesting it may be, would only tend to distract the attention  of the reader from the subject  with which we are mainly concerned.

If the remarks hitherto made are of any value, they undoubtedly tend to prove that all inferior races have
a tendency, in the first instance, to adopt the vices rather than the virtues of the more civilized races they may come in contact with. Assuming, then, as I think we have every right to do, that this statement is universally true, it is evident that the social separation maintained by caste has been of incalculable advantage. On the other hand, however, a number of disadvantages have been indicated by various writers; but only one of them seems to me at all worthy of serious attention. It has been asserted that this segregation has impeded advancement, that it has prevented the Indians learning as much from us (British) as they otherwise might, and that it has impeded the mainspring of all advancement—education. Here, I apprehend, the argument against caste, as far as rural populations are concerned, utterly fails, and, in a province contiguous to my own, a most
signal instance to the contrary can be pointed to. Few people have more proudly segregated themselves than the Coorgs; nowhere is the chastity of women more jealously guarded; and yet they were the first people in India who desired and petitioned  for female education. And how, then, can it be for one moment asserted that the tendency of caste is to check the progress of the people? "


Robert H. Elliot. “Gold, Sport, and Coffee Planting in Mysore.” iBooks. 
This material may be protected by copyright. (Chapter VIII CASTE)

Friday, August 30, 2013

Caste & Widow Re-marriage

The planter in Mysore, Robert H Elliot, (1837-1914)  had ample opportunity to experience ‘the living effects of the institution of Caste’ in the later half of the 19th century.  He informs us that he was the only European within a twelve mile radius, and ‘had been entirely dependent on a native population for
society’. Thus he developed close ‘intimacy’ with the natives , which helped him to empathetically understand their communal and social life.  His observation of widow remarriage is as follows. From his account, the modern story of  ‘reformers’ taking up cudgels against the  ‘age-old prohibition of widow-remarriage’, must be re-examined. It looks like modernity  is also in need of MYTHS.

Quote:  Before closing this branch of the subject, I may allude briefly to what has been so often attacked by the opponents of caste: I mean the prohibition of the marriage of widows. This rule exists in Manjarabad, but I am not aware that any great moral evil arises from it, as a widow can always contract to live with a man, the difference being that the ceremonies performed are of an inferior kind. This is not allowed to be a marriage, but, in fact, it is a marriage, though of a kind held in rather low estimation. On customs like these, which in a great measure neutralize the evils arising from the restrictions on re-marriage, it seems to me that our information is very scanty, and I am not aware how far the practice alluded to prevails in other parts of India.” (p. 384 of 798)

Then as of now it is mostly ones choice coupled with the circumstances, deciding whether to remain a widow or not.

Robert H. Elliot. “Gold, Sport, and Coffee Planting in Mysore.” iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright (From Chapter VIII.  CASTE)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

India vis-à-vis ‘Great’ Britain – STATE OF MORALITY OF PEOPLE COMPARED


Morally Indians were a superior people, even during the second half of the NINETEENTH  CENTURY. ie  during the second-half of 1800s.  Consider the following TESTIMONY (WITNESS) of Robert H. Elliot, planter in Mysore for 38 years, who had close and constant association with the natives, and whose statement, the result of  comparative assessment of morality of people in India  & G.Britain is given below :-

Quote- On two very important points, then—the connection of the sexes and the use of alcohol—it is evident that CASTE LAWS have produced some very favourable and valuable results; but I do not think we can accurately  gauge their value unless we compare the state of morality existing in Manjarabad with the state of morality existing in one of our home counties; and the comparison I have to make, if not very soothing, is, I am sure, very interesting. Take any one of our counties in Great Britain, for instance, and compare it with Manjarabad as regards the points I have particularly referred to, and it will be found that Manjarabad has an immense superiority. The crimes and misery arising from drinking are hardly to be found at all in Manjarabad, while the morality
of the sexes, I should think, could hardly be surpassed. Now, there is nothing very surprising, considering that the people in this country are so heavily weighted, that this should be the case; on the contrary, it is the natural result of the circumstances of their worldly situation. But, supposing that the worldly situation as to the means of support and the opportunities of marrying were equal, it seems to me perfectly plain that the people who have a large proportion of the better classes total abstainers, and who have their society so controlled that the rich cannot gratify their passions at the expense of the poor, must be in the possession of a superior morality.

Further read at the following link, the positive effects of Caste on the Social Fabric of India :-

Robert H. Elliot. “Gold, Sport, and Coffee Planting in Mysore.” iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright. (From Chapter VIII.  CASTE)

( note. This book/resource is freely available on the net.)

CASTE SYSTEM vis-a-vis ALCOHOLISM - Indian Experience

Having lived for 38 years among the natives of India as a Planter, the writings of Robert H. Elliot (1837-1914) offers a peek into the social life of India (Mysore)  during his time.  He recorded that , caste-laws produced a wholesome  effect  over Indian society.  Here he  notifies us, how caste laws and customs  prevented the abuse of alcohol, and men fearing loss of caste, refrained themselves for coming under alcohol’s baneful influences. Mr Elliot reminds us that since, - “a large proportion of the population of India are absolutely compelled to abstain from the use of alcohol, and that these being the very best, or at least equal to the very best, of the community, must always have exercised a large influence in discouraging the excessive use of intoxicating drinks,” -  the use of alcohol was  confined to only a few, maybe on the margins. Contrast this pre-modern period, to that of the  all pervasive abuse of alcohol and other intoxicating substances, even by  children , in  MODERN TIMES.  The situation has become much ugly and preposterous that MODERN GOVTS like that in the Indian State of Kerala and TN  almost exclusively depend on  revenue  got from the sale of liquor.

Excerpts- Having thus briefly glanced at caste law, as controlling the connection of the sexes, let us now look at it from another pointof view, which I venture to think is, as regards its ultimate
consequences, of even still more importance. If there is one vice more than another which is productive of serious crime, it is the abuse of alcohol; and there is no doubt that, to use the words of an eminent statesman, "if we could subtract from the ignorance, the poverty, the suffering, the sickness, and the crime now witnessed among us, (ie the English) the ignorance, the poverty, the sickness, and the crime caused by the single vice of drinking, this country would be so changed for the better that we should hardly know it again." Regarding it, then, in all its consequences, whether physical
or mental (and how many madmen and idiots are there not bred by drinking?  I observe in the Administration Report for Mysore, 1867-68, that nearly all the cases in the lunatic asylum were traced either to drinking or bhang-smoking), it is difficult to estimate too highly the value of caste laws that utterly prohibit the use of those strong drinks that are injurious in any country, but are a thousand times more so
under the rays of a tropical sun. And when we come to consider that a large proportion of the population of India are absolutely compelled to abstain from the use of alcohol, and that these being the very best, or at least equal to the very best, of the community, must always have exercised a large influence in discouraging the excessive use of intoxicating drinks, it is impossible to refrain from coming to the conclusion that this single fact is more than sufficient to counterbalance all the evils that have ever been said to arise from caste.

Robert H. Elliot. “Gold, Sport, and Coffee Planting in Mysore.” iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright. (From Chapter VIII.  CASTE)

( note. This book/resource is freely available on the net.)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


The Institution of  CASTE prevailing in the 19th   century, guaranteed  that even women from the lower
Robert  H Elliot 
castes were safe from exploitation by men of the upper castes. The detailed account of Caste and customs and interactions of caste members prevailing at that point in time  provided by a planter in Mysore , Mr.Robert H.Elliot and first published in 1898 in his book , excerpts of which are given below, portrays a vivid picture of the BENEFITS of Caste.

QuoteThe information most needed, and which has not yet, or only in the most imperfect sense, been acquired, is as to what CASTE  has done for good or evil. It shall be my endeavor to solve that question; and I imagine the solution would be in a great measure effected if I could, in the first instance, answer the following questions:

(1). How far has caste acted as a moral restraint amongst the Indians themselves?  (the second question is omitted here but will be taken up later). Now, as regards one department of morals, at least, I unhesitatingly affirm that it did, and that, as regards the connection of the sexes, it would be difficult to find in any part of the world a more moral people than the two higher castes of Manjarabad, (this is a taluk on the South-West Frontier of Mysore) who form about one-half of the population, and who may be termed the farming proprietors of the country. Amongst themselves, indeed, it was not to be wondered at that their morality was extremely good, as, from the fact of nearly everyone being married
at the age of puberty, and partly, perhaps, from the fact of their houses being more or less isolated, instead of being grouped in villages, the temptations to immorality were necessarily slight. Their temptations, though, as regards the Pariahs, who were, when I entered Manjarabad, merely hereditary serfs, were considerable; and there it was that the value of caste law came in. Caste said, "You shall not touch these women;" and so strong was this law, that I never knew of but one instance of one of the better classes offending with a Pariah woman.[And that, I may observe, was a case in which a toddy-drawer, the third caste in Manjarabad, was concerned] .Some aversion of race there might, no doubt, have been, but the police of caste and its penalties were so strong that he would be a bold man indeed who would venture to run any risk of detection.
To give an idea of how the punishment for an offence of this kind would operate, it may be added that, if one of the farming classes in this country,(ie in England) on a case of seducing one of the lower, was fined by his neighbours £500,(then a substantial amount) and cut by society till he paid the money, he would be in exactly the same position as a Manjarabad farmer would be who had violated the important caste law under consideration. Here, therefore, we have a moral police of tremendous power, and the very best proof we have of the regularity with which it has been enforced lies in the fact that the Pariahs and the farmers are distinguished by a form and physiognomy almost as distinct as those existing between an Englishman and a negro. Caste, then, as we have seen, protects the poor from the passions of the rich, and it equally protects the upper classes themselves, and enforcedly makes them more moral than, judging from our experience in other quarters of the globe, they would otherwise be. ( note. This book/resource is freely available on the net.)

Read  the following to know more about the positive contribution of CASTE  institution, to Indian Society :-

Robert H. Elliot. “Gold, Sport, and Coffee Planting in Mysore.” iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright. (From Chapter VIII.  CASTE)

Sunday, August 25, 2013


"Historians & Anthropologists have also begun to recognize that caste helped to promote economic activity in a number of ways." Page 6, Middle of paragraph no. 2

Indians will have to reconsider and re-imagine the institution of CASTE in pre-modern India, in  favourable light. Caste is unique to India. Caste Institutions have contributed to economic prosperity of India, and latest 'research' acknowledges this positive contribution of caste institutions

The book 'Why Europe Grew Rich and Asia Did Not' authored by Prasannan Parthasarathy , Associate Professor in the Dept of History  at Boston College  and first  published by Cambridge University Press in 2011, states that Caste  was not an obscurantist  institution, as it is made out to be,  blocking the enconomic well-being of the masses, belonging to various castes.Caste is always vilified in post-Independent India. In actuality it was/is a benign institution, and had kept the country from slipping into chaos on many adverse occassions.

Scanned image of Page No.6 of the above book, with the relevant paragraph.
Prasannan Parthasarathy (1)

Boston College, History Dept.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Radiocarbon Dating - Inaccurate & Questionable Results.

Can the results obtained from the 'scientific' Radio-Carbon Dating , be used for a reliable re-construction of History ? 

The systemic flaws in Radio-Carbon dating is detailed by Jared Diamond in his book Guns, Germs & Steel. The relevant excerpt from the book is given below.

"Archaeologists date food production by radiocarbon dating of carbon containing materials at the site.
This method is based on the slow decay of radioactive carbon 14, a very minor component of carbon, the ubiquitous building block of life, into the nonradioactive isotope nitrogen 14. Carbon14 is continually being generated in the atmosphere by cosmic rays. Plants take up atmospheric carbon, which has a known and approximately constant ratio of carbon 14 to the prevalent isotope carbon 12 (a ratio of about one to a million). That plant carbon goes on to form the body of the herbivorous animals that eat the plants, and of the carnivorous animals that eat those herbivorous animals. Once the plant or animal dies, though, half of its carbon 14 content decays into carbon 12 every 5,700 years, until after about 40,000 years the carbon 14 content is very low and difficult to measure or to distinguish from contamination with small amounts of modern materials containing carbon 14. Hence the age of material from an archaeological site can be calculated from the material's carbon 14/carbon12 ratio.
Add caption
Radiocarbon is plagued by numerous technical problems, of which two deserve mention here. One is that radiocarbon dating until the 1980s required relatively large amounts of carbon (a few grams), much more than the amount in small seeds or bones. Hence scientists instead often had to resort to dating material recovered nearby at the same site andbelieved to be "associated with" the food remains—that is, to have been deposited simultaneously by the people who left the food. A typical choice of "associated" material is charcoal from fires.

But archaeological sites are not always neatly sealed time capsules of  materials all deposited on the same day. Materials deposited at different times can get mixed together, as worms and rodents and other agents churn up the ground. Charcoal residues from a fire can thereby end up close to the remains of a plant or animal that died and was eaten thousands of years earlier or later. Increasingly today, archaeologists are circumventing this problem by a new technique termed accelerator mass spectrometry, which permits radiocarbon dating of tiny samples and thus lets one directly date a single small seed, small bone, or other food residue. In some cases big differences have been found between recent radiocarbon dates based on the direct new methods (which have their own problems) and those based on the indirect older ones. Among the resulting controversies remaining unresolved, perhaps the most important for the purposes of this book concerns the date when food production originated in the Americas: indirect methods of the 1960s and 1970s yielded dates as early as 7000 B.C., but more recent direct dating has been yielding dates no earlier than 3500 B.C.

A second problem in radiocarbon dating is that the carbon 14 / carbon12 ratio of the atmosphere is in fact not rigidly constant but fluctuates slightly with time, so calculations of radiocarbon dates based on the assumption of a constant ratio are subject to small systematic errors. The magnitude of this error for each past date can in principle be determined with the help of long-lived trees laying down annual growth rings, since the rings can be counted up to obtain an absolute calendar date in the past for each ring, and a carbon sample of wood dated in this manner can then be analyzed for its carbon 14 / carbon 12 ratio. In this way, measured radiocarbon dates can be "calibrated" to take account of fluctuations in the atmospheric carbon ratio. The effect of this correction is that, for materials with apparent (that is, uncalibrated) dates between about 1000 and 6000 B.C., the true (calibrated) date is between a few centuries and a thousand years earlier. Somewhat older samples have more recently begun to be calibrated by an alternative method based on another radioactive decay process and yielding the conclusion that samples apparently dating to about 9000 B.C. actually date to around 11,000 B.C.

Archaeologists often distinguish calibrated from uncalibrated dates by writing the former in upper-case letters and the latter in lower-case letters (for example, 3000 B.C. vs. 3000 b.c., respectively). However, the archaeological literature can be confusing in this respect, because many books and papers report uncalibrated dates as B.C. and fail to mention that they are actually uncalibrated. The dates that I report in this book for events within the last 15,000 years are calibrated dates. That accounts for some of the discrepancies that readers may note between this book's dates and those
quoted in some standard reference books on early food production."

From the Book -GUNS, GERMS, AND STEEL, Chapter 5, HISTORY'S HAVES AND HAVE-NOTS , pages 95-97

For further reference two links are provided. The first one is linked to a Christian Organization.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Himalayas- Climbing the Himalayan Peaks. Does it make any sense to Indians?

The following letter from Gandhiji's collected Works ,( VOL. 21 : 1 JULY, 1920 - 21 NOVEMBER, 1920   Page 1) defines our(Indian) attitude or rather indifference  towards 'conquering ' the Himalayan Peaks (Or similar such physical feats for all time to come, including the mission to MARS) :-


“The path of truth is for the brave alone, never for a coward.” I realize the significance of this poem(2)more and more as days pass. I also see that it is not for grown-ups only to put the idea of this verse into practice; children and students, too, can do so. If we try to know
and follow the path of truth right from childhood, then alone, on
growing up, shall we be saved from following the path of untruth. Just
as a disease, if neglected, becomes chronic and incurable, so also
untruth, if permitted to take rot in us from childhood, will later grow
into a serious disease and, becoming incurable, gradually ruin our
health. It is for this reason that we find untruth increasing in us.

So the highest lesson to be learnt during one’s student-life is
that one should know truth and act on it.

This path has always been for the brave because a much greater
effort is required to go up the steep slope of truth than to climb the
Himalayas. If at all, therefore, we want to work in this direction and
serve ourselves, we should give the first place to truth and march
forward with unshakable faith in it. Truth is God.

[From Gujarati]
Madhpudo, I, ii1

1 This was Gandhiji’s contribution to Madhpudo, the manuscript magazine of
the Ashram School, Sabarmati.
2 By Pritamdas (c. 1720-1798); a Gujarati poet and Vedantin

Thursday, August 8, 2013

CASTE AND INDIANS IN THE POST-MODERN AGE- MARRIAGE - The newspaper link is provided here

This is a continuation of the previous post "CASTE AND INDIANS IN THE POST-MODERN AGE- MARRIAGE "

‘Caste no bar’, in words if not in action - The Hindu



The following report, suggests that the institution of Caste is getting stronger. Caste, a great institution in India, served a benevolent role  till the modern age. -That is before the proliferation of power driven machines. Caste was instumental in providing livelihood on a non-competitive basis. The law of the jungle, ie Darwins law of the 'SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST' ,was impotent when confronted by caste. But now situation has changed, and 'livelihoods' is at stake all over the world.

The report talks about 'upward' SOCIAL MOBILITY characteristic of India .Quote "conclude that “[t]he…findings point to the fact that in the urban, Indian, middle-class marriage market, a significant proportion of participants and their families is willing to consider crossing caste boundaries if it allows them to upgrade their caste or SE [socio-economic] status.” -Even in modern times, 'upgradation' of CASTE is sought for, and holds it place  against and on par with the Western concept of social mobility, like acquiring house, car, good-education etc.

Quote "The Centre for the Study of Developing Society’s 2009 National Election Study of over 30,000 respondents showed that those who believed inter-caste marriage should be banned outnumbered those who supported it."

Quote "Moreover, while the option to not state one’s own caste exists on, just about 10% of users choose not to state their own castes." "This is consistent with both micro and macro data that seems to indicate that inter-caste marriage isn’t growing in India"

Quote "But nearly all the women who responded, including those who showed an interest in men of other castes, expressed an interest in men of their own caste."

Quote "...a 2010 labour market study by economist Sukhadeo Thorat, who is now chairman of the Indian Council of Social Science Research, and sociologist Paul Attewell, who posted fictitious resumes in response to job advertisements for private sector companies, and found that the fictitious applicant with a scheduled caste last name was by far the least likely to be called for an interview, despite being qualified."

Deepen our understanding regarding  the 'science' underlying caste evolution (organization), Respect the institution of Caste and frame policies based on these for all round social harmony. Do not ape the West and belittle Caste. For Caste had provided a stable, secure and peaceful  life for Indians, till the advent of Modern Machines. Those countries who had adopted Modern methods of production and distribution are in deep-trouble. eg. nations of Europe, US, Japan etc.We will follow suit if we insult our ancestors and do away with the social organization(incl. of production and distribution) that they recommended. From the report we are sure that Caste is not going to vanish in India. And Indian politics in the post modern age is dependent on Caste parties and Caste equations.

PART 2 in the INSIDE page -

Monday, August 5, 2013

CHOMSKY - How India was deflowered and reduced to penury after the invention of POWER-driven MACHINES !

The following interview of Shri Noam Chomsky, happened on/between  December 16, 1992 and January 14 and 21, 1993.

This interview with Chomsky provides additional strength to the view that , in the pre-modern age India was a prosperous country.  The significance of that age is the non-dependence on power driven MACHINES. Even without such kind of machinery, India was far ahead in manufacturing, and if we use the modern yardstick of GDP, was contributing to 25% of WORLD GDP, which was substantial.(This data/figure is from the West, and is cited on my blog-page.The graph below is additional)


The following passages also illustrates the ‘Evil Propensity of Machinery’. As we read the sentences, that ‘small inner voice’, insistently tells us that ‘Machinery is necessarily Evil’. It(machinery) soils the mind, and it(mind) becomes like a soiled mirror, incapable of reflecting the soul.

That work performed manually in the right spirit (nish-kama-karma), provides adequate concentration (eka-gratha), resulting in  purification of the mind (chitta-shuddi) , which further results in quality workmanship and products is beyond doubt, considering the Indian experience. Because Indian temperament towards work was based on knowledge contained in our shastras. That religion determined Indian life is beyond doubt.

Thinking further on the subject, it is said that Thiruvalluvar belonged to the weaver community. (I) not sure whether he was the regular practitioner of the art of weaving, and produced fine clothes. But ‘The Thirukkural’ is a concrete example of the fruits of his mental concentration (eka-gratha). (Another example we can consider is that of Kabir-Das)

Now the interview-
“ (Q)David Barsamian : India today is torn asunder by various separatist movements. Kashmir is an incredible mess, occupied by the Indian army, and there are killings, detentions and massive human rights violations in the Punjab and elsewhere.

I'd like you to comment on a tendency in the Third World to blame the colonial masters for all the problems that are besetting their countries today. They seem to say, "Yes, India has problems, but it's the fault of the British -- before that, India was just one happy place."

(A) Chomsky : It's difficult to assess blame for historical disasters. It's somewhat like trying to assess blame for the health of a starving and diseased person. There are lots of different factors. Let's say the person was tortured -- that certainly had an effect. But maybe when the torture was over, that person ate the wrong diet, lived a dissolute life and died from the combined effects. That's the kind of thing we're talking about.

There's no doubt that imperial rule was a disaster. Take India. When the British first moved into Bengal, it was one of the richest places in the world. The first British merchant warriors described it as a paradise. That area is now Bangladesh and Calcutta -- the very symbols of despair and hopelessness.

There were rich agricultural areas producing unusually fine cotton. They also had advanced manufacturing, by the standards of the day. For example, an Indian firm built one of the flagships for an English admiral during the Napoleonic Wars. It wasn't built in British factories -- it was the Indians' own manufacture.

You can read about what happened in Adam Smith, who was writing over two hundred years ago. He deplored the deprivations that the British were carrying out in Bengal. As he puts it, they first destroyed the agricultural economy and then turned "dearth into a famine." One way they did this was by taking the agricultural lands and turning them into poppy production (since opium was the only thing Britain could sell to China). Then there was mass starvation in Bengal.

The British also tried to destroy the existing manufacturing system in the parts of India they controlled. Starting from about 1700, Britain imposed harsh tariff regulations to prevent Indian manufacturers from competing with British textiles. They had to undercut and destroy Indian textiles because India had a comparative advantage. They were using better cotton and their manufacturing system was in many respects comparable to, if not better than, the British system.

The British succeeded. India deindustrialized, it ruralized. As the industrial revolution spread in England, India was turning into a poor, ruralized and agrarian country.

It wasn't until 1846, when their competitors had been destroyed and they were way ahead, that Britain suddenly discovered the merits of free trade. Read the British liberal historians, the big advocates of free trade -- they were very well aware of it. Right through that period they say: "Look, what we're doing to India isn't pretty, but there's no other way for the mills of Manchester to survive. We have to destroy the competition."

And it continues. We can pursue this case by case through India. In 1944, Nehru wrote an interesting book [The Discovery of India] from a British prison. He pointed out that if you trace British influence and control in each region of India, and then compare that with the level of poverty in the region, they correlate. The longer the British have been in a region, the poorer it is. The worst, of course, was Bengal -- now Bangladesh. That's where the British were first.

You can't trace these same things in Canada and North America, because there they just decimated the population. It's not only the current "politically correct" commentators that describe this -- you can go right back to the founding fathers.

The first secretary of defense, General Henry Knox, said that what we're doing to the native population is worse than what the conquistadors did in Peru and Mexico. He said future historians will look at the "destruction" of these people -- what would nowadays be called genocide -- and paint the acts with "sable colors" [in other words, darkly].

This was known all the way through. Long after John Quincy Adams, the intellectual father of Manifest Destiny, left power, he became an opponent of both slavery and the policy toward the Indians. He said he'd been involved -- along with the rest of them -- in a crime of "extermination" of such enormity that surely God would punish them for these "heinous sins."

Latin America was more complex, but the initial population was virtually destroyed within a hundred and fifty years. Meanwhile, Africans were brought over as slaves. That helped devastate Africa even before the colonial period, then the conquest of Africa drove it back even further.

After the West had robbed the colonies -- as they did, no question about that, and there's also no question that it contributed to their own development -- they changed over to so-called "neocolonial" relationships, which means domination without direct administration. After that it was generally a further disaster.” - From the Chapter 7 named ‘Gandhi, Non-violence  and India’ of the  book ‘The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many’ (Interviews with Noam Chomsky) Copyright 1994 by David  Barsamian.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Subjugated Territory - Hindu Law

ANECDOTAL ..... How subjugated people are to be treated ? - HINDU LAW

"342. Of a newly subjugated territory, the monarch shall preserve the social and religious usages, also the judicial system and the state of classes as they already obtain.[31]"

Yájnavalkya. “Hindu Law and Judicature / from the Dharma-Sástra of Yájnavalkya.” iBooks.

STRICTLY  NO RELIGIOUS CONVERSION, NO TAMPERING WITH THE ORIGINAL/EXISTING SOCIAL STRUCTURE. NO new laws imposed by the conqueror. Let us be aware of such NOBLE  values, upheld through laws, by our ancestors !!!!!

Anecdotal - Yajnavalkaya -Hindu Law


The following order is reversed in the modern age.

"116. [Men] are to be honoured in the gradation following,—in respect of learning, conduct, years, family, property. Even a Śúdrá, if he excel in these respects, is in old age worthy of honour. (P 19 of 143)

Yájnavalkya. “Hindu Law and Judicature / from the Dharma-Sástra of Yájnavalkya.” iBooks.