Sunday, 8 January 2012


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Inscribed to the Memory of
The Greatest Shudra of Modern India who made the lower classes of Hindus conscious of their slavery to the higher classes and whopreached the gospel that for India social democracy was more vital than independence from foreign rule.
How they came to be the
Fourth Varna in the
Indo-Aryan Society
By B. R. Ambedkar




1.  Chapter I - The Riddle of the Shudras
2. Chapter II - The Brahmanic Theory of the Origin  of the Shudras
3. Chapter III - The Brahmanic Theory of the Status  of the Shudras
4. Chapter IV - Shudras Versus Aryans
5. Chapter V - Aryans Against Aryans
6. Chapter VI - Shudras And Dasas
7. Chapter VII - The Shudras were Kshatriyas
8. Chapter VIII - The Number of Varnas, Three or Four?

9. Chapter IX - Brahmins Versus Shudras

10. Chapter X - The Degradation of the Shudras
11. Chapter XI - The Story of Reconciliation
12. Chapter XII - The Theory in the Crucible


In the present stage of the literature on the subject, a book on the Shudras cannot be regarded as a superfluity. Nor can it be said to deal with a trivial problem. The general proposition that the social organization of the Indo-Aryans was based on the theory of Chaturvarnya and that Chaturvarnya means division of society into four classes—Brahmins (priests), Kshatriyas (soldiers),Vaishyas (traders) and Shudras(menials) does not convey any idea of the real nature of the problem of the Shudras nor of its magnitude. Chaturvarnya would have been a very innocent principle if it meant no more than mere division of society into four classes. Unfortunately, more than this is involved in the theory of Chaturvarnya. Besides dividing society into four orders, the theory goes further and makes the principle of graded inequality. the basis for determining the terms of associated life as between the four Varnas. Again, the system of graded inequality is not merely notional. It is legal and penal. Under the system of Chaturvarnya, the Shudra is not only placed at the bottom of the gradation but he is subjected to inunumerable ignominies and disabilities so as to prevent him from rising above the condition fixed for him by law. Indeed until the fifth Varnaof the Untouchables came into being, the Shudras were in the eyes of the Hindus the lowest of the low. This shows the nature of what might be called the problem of the Shudras. If people have no idea of the magnitude of the problem it is because they have not cared to know what the population of the Shudras is. Unfortunately, the census does not show their population separately. But there is no doubt that excluding the Untouchables the Shudras  form about 75 to 80 per cent of the population of Hindus. A treatise which deals with so vast a population cannot be considered to be dealing with a trivial problem.
The book deals with the Shudras in the Indo-Aryan Society. There is a view that an inquiry into these questions is of no present-day moment. It is said by no less a person than Mr. Sherring in his Hindu Tribes and Castes*[f1] that :
"Whether the Shudras were Aryans, or aboriginal inhabitants of India, or tribes produced by the union of the one with the other, is of little practical moment. They were at an early period placed in a class by themselves, and received the fourth or last degree of rank, yet at a considerable distance from the three superior castes. Even though it be admitted that at the outset they were not Aryans, still, from their extensive intermarriages with the three Aryan Castes, they have become so far Aryanized that, in some instances as already shown, they have gained more than they have lost, and certain tribes now designated as Shudras are in reality more Brahmins and Kshatriyas than anything else. In short, they have become as much absorbed in other races the cletic tribes of England have become absorbed in the Anglo-Saxon race; and their own separate individuality, if they ever had any, has completely vanished."
This view is based on two errors. Firstly, the present-day Shudras are a collection of castes drawn from heterogeneous stocks and are racially different from the original Shudras of the Indo-Aryan society. Secondly, in the case of Shudras the centre of interest is not the Shudras as a people but the legal system of pains and penalties to which they are subjected. The system of pains and penalties was no doubt originally devised by the Brahmins to deal with the Shudras of the Indo-Aryan society, who have ceased to exist as a distinct, separate, identifiable community. But strange as it may seem the Code intended to deal with them has remained in operation and is now applied to all low-class Hindus, who have no lock stock with the original Shudras. How this happened must be a matter of curiosity to all. My explanation is that the Shudras of the Indo-Aryan Society in course of time became so degraded as a consequence of the severity of the Brahmanical laws that they really came to occupy a very low state in public life. Two consequences followed from this. One consequence was a change in the connotation of the word Shudra. The word Shudra lost its original meaning of being the name of a particular community and became a general name for a low-class people without civilisation, without culture, without respect and without position. The second consequence was that the widening of the meaning of the word Shudra brought in its train the widening of the application of the is in this way that the so-called Shudras of the present-day have become subject to the Code, though they are not Shudras in the original sense of the word. Be that as it may, the fact remains that the Code intended for the original culprits has come to be applied to the innocents. If the Hindu law-givers had enough historical sense to realise that the original Shudras were different from the present-day low-class people, this tragedy—this massacre of the innocents—would have been avoided. The fact, however unfortunate it may be, is that the Code is applied to the present-dayShudras in the same rigorous manner in which it was applied to the original Shudras. How such a Code came into being cannot therefore be regarded as of mere antiquarian interest to the Shudras of to-day.
While it may be admitted that a study of the origin of the Shudras is welcome, some may question my competence to handle the theme. I have already been warned that while I may have a right to speak on Indian politics, religion and religious history of India are not my field and that I must not enter it. I do not know why my critics have thought it necessary to give me this warning. If it is an antidote to any extravagant claim made by me as a thinker or a writer, then it is unnecessary. For, I am ready to admit that I am not competent to speak even on Indian politics. If the warning is for the reason that I cannot claim mastery over the Sanskrit language, I admit this deficiency. But I do not see why it should disqualify me altogether from operating in this field. There is very little of literature in the Sanskrit language which is not available in English. The want of knowledge of Sanskrit need not therefore be a bar to my handling a theme such as the present. For I venture to say that a study of the relevant literature, albeit in English translations, for 15 years ought to be enough to invest even a person endowed with such moderate intelligence like myself, with sufficient degree of competence for the task. As to the exact measure of my competence to speak on the subject, this book will furnish the best testimony. It may well turn out that this attempt of mine is only an illustration of the proverbial fool rushing in where the angels fear to tread. But I take refuge in the belief that even the fool has a duty to perform, namely, to do his bit if the angel has gone to sleep or is unwilling to proclaim the truth. This is my justification for entering the prohibited field.
What is it that is noteworthy about this book? Undoubtedly the conclusions which I have reached as a result of my investigations. Two questions are raised in this book: (1) Who were the Shudras? and (2) How they came to be the fourth Varna of the Indo-Aryan society? My answers to them are summarised below :
(1)  The Shudras were one of the Aryan communities of the Solar race.
(2)  There was a time when the Aryan society recognised only three Varnas, namely. Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas.
(3)  The Shudras did not form a separate Varna. They ranked as part of the Kshatriya Varna in the Indo-Aryan society.
(4)  There was a continuous feud between the Shudra kings and the Brahmins in which the Brahmins were subjected to many tyrannies and indignities.
(5)  As a result of the hatred towards the Shudras generated by their tyrannies and oppressions, the Brahmins refused to perform theUpanayana of the Shudras.
(6)  Owing to the denial of Upanayana, the Shudras who were Kshatriyas became socially degraded, fell below the rank of the Vaishyasand thus came to form the fourth Varna.
I must of course await the verdict of scholars on these conclusions. That these conclusions are not merely original but they are violently opposed to those that are current is of course evident. Whether these conclusions will be accepted or not will depend upon the mentality of a person claiming to have a right to sit in judgement over the issue. Of course, if he is attached to a particular thesis he will reject mine. I would not however bother about his judgement for he would be an adversary from whom nothing can be expected except opposition. But if a person is an honest critic, howsoever cautious, however conservative he may be, provided that he has an open mind and a readiness to accept facts, I do not despair of converting him to my view. This expectation may fail to materialize, but about one thing I am quite certain. My critics will have to admit that the book is rich in fresh insights and new visions.
Apart from scholars, how the Hindu public will react may be an interesting speculation. The Hindus of to-day fall into five definite classes. There is a class of Hindus, who are known as orthodox and who will not admit that there is anything wrong with the Hindu social system. To talk of reforming it is to them rank blasphemy. There is a class of Hindus who are known as Arya Samajists. They believe in the Vedas and only in the Vedas. They differ from the orthodox inasmuch as they discard everything which is not in the Vedas. Their gospel is that of return to the Vedas. There is a class of Hindus who will admit that the Hindu social system is all wrong, but who hold that there is no necessity to attack it. Their argument is that since law does not recognize it, it is a dying, if not a dead system. There is a class of Hindus, who are politically minded. They are indifferent to such questions. To them Swaraj is more important than social reform. The fifth class of Hindus are those who are rationalists and who regard social reforms as of primary importance, even more important than Swaraj.
With the Hindus, who fall into the second category, those who are likely to regard the book as unnecessary, I cannot agree. In a way, they are right when they say that the existing laws in British India does not recognize the caste system prevalent in the Hindu society. It is true that, having regard to section II of the Civil Procedure Code, it would not be possible for a Hindu to obtain a declaration from a civil court that he belongs to a particular Varna. If courts in British India have to consider the question whether a person belongs to a particular Varna, it is only in cases of marriage, inheritance and adoption, the rules of which vary according to the Varna to which the party belongs. While it is true that the Law in British India does not recognize the four Varnas of the Hindus, one must be careful not to misunderstand what this means. To put it precisely: (1) it does not mean that the observance of the Varna system is a crime; (2) it does not mean that the Varna system has disappeared; (3) it does not mean that the Varna system is not given effect to in cases where the observance of its rules are necessary to acquiring civil rights; (4) it only means that the general legal sanction behind the Varna system has been withdrawn New, law is not the only sanction which goes to sustain social institutions. Institutions are sustained byother sanctions also. Of these, religious sanction and social sanction are the most important. The Varna system has a religious sanction. Because it has a religious sanction, the Varna system has the fullest social sanction from the Hindu society. With no legal prohibition, this religious sanction has been more than enough to keep the Varnasystem in full bloom. The best evidence to show that the Varna system is alive notwithstanding there is no law to enforce it, is to be found in the fact that the status of the Shudras and the Untouchables in the Hindu society has remained just what it has been. It cannot therefore be said that a study such as this is unnecessary.
As to the politically-minded Hindu, he need not be taken seriously. His line of approach is generally governed by a short-term view more than by long-range considerations. He is willing to follow the line of least resistance and postpone a matter, however urgent, if it is likely to make him unpopular. It is therefore quite natural if the politically-minded Hindu regards this book as a nuisance.
The book treads heavily on the toes of the Arya Samajists. My conclusions have come in sharp conflict with their ideology at two most important points. The Arya Samajists believe that the four Varnas of the Indo-Aryan society have been in existence from the very beginning. The book shows that there was a time when there were only three Varnas in the Indo-Aryan society. The Arya Samajists believe that theVedas are eternal and sacrosanct. The book shows that portions of the Vedas at any rate, particularly the Pursha Sukta, which is the mainstay of the Arya Samajists, are fabrications by Brahmins intended to serve their own purposes. Both these conclusions are bound to act like atomic bombs on the dogmas of the Arya Samajists.
I am not sorry for this clash with Arya Samajists. The Arya Samajists have done great mischief in making the Hindu society a stationary society by preaching that the Vedas are eternal, without beginning, without end, and infallible, and that the social institutions of the Hindus being based on the Vedas are also eternal, without beginning, without end, infallible and therefore requiring no change. To be permeated with such a belief is the worst thing that can happen to a community. I am convinced that the Hindu society will not accept the necessity of reforming itself unless and until this Arya Samajists' ideology is completely destroyed. The book does render this service, if no other.
What the Orthodox Hindu will say about this book I can well imagine for I have been battling with him all these years. The only thing I did not know was how the meek and non-violent looking Hindu can be violent when anybody attacks his Sacred Books. I became aware of it as never before when last year I received a shower of letters from angry Hindus, who became quite unbalanced by my speech on the subject delivered in Madras. The letters were full of filthy abuse, unmentionable and unprintable, and full of dire threats to my life. Last time they treated me as a first offender and let me off with mere threats. I don't know what they will do this time. For on reading the book they are sure to find more cause for anger at what in their eyes is a repetition of the offence in an aggravated form for having brought forth chapter and verse to show that what goes by the name of Sacred Books contains fabrications which are political in their motive, partisan in their composition and fraudulent in their purpose. I do not propose to take any notice of their vilifications or their threats. For I know very well that they are a base crew who, professing to defend their religion, have made religion a matter of trade. They are more selfish than any other set of beings in the world, and are prostituting their intelligence to support the vested interests of their class. It is a matter of no small surprise that when the mad dogs of orthodoxy are let loose against a person who has the courage to raise his voice against the so-called Sacred Books of the Hindus, eminent Hindus occupying lofty places, claiming themselves to be highly educated and who could be expected to have no interest and to have a free and open mind become partisans and join the outcry. Even Hindu Judges of High Courts and Hindu Prime Ministers of Indian States do not hesitate to join their kind. They go further. They not only lead the howl against him but even join in the hunt. What is outrageous is that they do so because they believe that their high stations in life would invest their words with an amount of terror which would be sufficient enough to cow down any and every opponent of orthodoxy. What I would like to tell these amiable gentlemen is that they will not be able to stop me by their imprecations. They do not seem to be aware of the profound and telling words of Dr. Johnson who when confronted with analogous situation said, 1 am not goint to be deterred from catching a cheat by the menaces of a ruffian.' I do not wish to be rude to these high-placed critics, much less do I want to say that they are playing the part of a ruffian interested in the escape of a cheat. But I do want to tell them two things: firstly that I propose, no matter what happens, to follow the determination of Dr. Johnson in the pursuit of historical truth by the exposure of the Sacred Books so that the Hindus may know that it is the doctrines contained in their Sacred Books which are responsible for the decline and fall of their country and their society; secondly, if the Hindus of this generation do not take notice of what I have to say I am sure the future generation will. I do not despair of success. For I take consolation in the words of the poet Bhavabhutiwho said, "Time is infinite and earth is vast, some day there will be born a man who will appreciate what I have said." Whatever that be the book is a challenge to orthodoxy.
The only class of Hindus, who are likely to welcome the book are those who believe in the necessity and urgency of social reform. The fact that it is a problem which will certainly take a long time to solve and will call the efforts of many generations to come, is in their opinion, no justification for postponing the study of that problem. Even an ardent Hindu politician, if he is honest, will admit that the problems arising out of the malignant form of communalism, which is inherent in the Hindu social organization and which the politically minded Hindus desire to ignore or postpone, invariably return to plague,  those very politicians at every turn. These problems are not the difficulties of the moment. They are our permanent difficulties, that is to say, difficulties of every moment. I am glad to know that such a class of Hindus exists. Small though they be, they are my mainstay and it is to them that I have addressed my argument.
It will be said that I have shown no respect for the sacred literature of the Hindus which every sacred literature deserves. If the charge be true, I can plead two circumstances in justification of myself. Firstly I claim that in my research I have been guided by the best tradition of the historian who treats all literature as vulgar—1 am using the word in its original sense of belonging to the people—to be examined and tested by accepted rules of evidence without recognizing any distinction between the sacred and the profane and with the sole object of finding the truth. If in following this tradition I am found wanting in respect and reverence for the sacred literature of the Hindus my duty as a scholar must serve as my excuse. Secondly, respect and reverence for the sacred literature cannot be made to order. They are the results of social factors which make such sentiments natural in one case and quite unnatural in another. Respect and reverence for the sacred literature of the Hindus is natural to a Brahmin scholar. But it is quite unnatural in a non-Brahmin scholar. The explanation of this difference is quite simple. That a Brahmin scholar should treat this sacred literature with uncritical reverence and forbear laying on it the heavy hands which the detachment of an intellectual as distinguished from the merely educated is what is to be expected. For what is this sacred literature? It is a literature which is almost entirely the creation of the Brahmins. Secondly, its whole object is to sustain the superiority and privileges of the Brahmins as againstthe non-Brahmins. Why should not the Brahmins uphold the sanctity of such a literature? The very reason that leads the Brahmin to uphold it makes the non-Brahmin hate it. Knowing that what is called the sacred literature contains an abominable social philosophy which is responsible for their social degradation, the non-Brahmin reacts to it in a manner quite opposite to that of the Brahmin. That I should be wanting in respect and reverence for the sacred literaturof the Hindus should not surprise any one if it is borne in mind that I am a non-Brahmin, not even a non-Brahmin but an Untouchable. My antipathy to the sacred literature could not naturally be less than that of the non-Brahmin As Prof. Thorndyke says: that a man thinks is a biological fact what he thinks is a sociological fact.
I am aware that this difference in the attitude of a Brahmin scholar and a non-Brahmin scholar towards this sacred literature—literature which is the main source of the material for the study of the problems of the social history of the Hindus— the former with his attitude of uncritical commendation and the latter with his attitude of unsparing condemnation is most harmful to historical research.
The mischief done by the Brahmin scholars to historical research is obvious. The Brahmin scholar has a two-fold interest in the maintenance of the sanctity of this literature. In the first place being the production of his forefathers his filial duty leads him to defend it even at the cost of truth. In the second place as it supports the privileges of the Brahmins, he is careful not to do anything which would undermine its authority. The necessity of upholding the system by which he knows he stands to profit, as well as of upholding the prestige of his forefathers as the founders of the system, acts as a silent immaculate premise which is ever present in the mind of the Brahmin scholar and prevents him from reaching or preaching the truth. That is why one finds so little that is original in the field of historical research by Brahminscholars unless it be a matter of fixing dates or tracing genealogies. The non-Brahmin scholar has none of these limitations and is therefore free to engage himself in a relentless pursuit of truth. That such a difference exists between the two classes of students is not a mere matter of speculation. This very book is an illustraton in point. It contains an exposure of the real character of the conspiracy against the Shudras,which no Brahmin scholar could have had the courage to present.
While it is true that a non-Brahmin scholar is free from the inhibitions of the Brahmin scholar he is likely to go to the other extreme and treat the whole literature as a collection of fables and fictions fit to be thrown on the dung heap not worthy of serious study. This is not the spirit of an historian. As has been well said, an historian ought to be exact, sincere, and impartial; free from passion, unbiased by interest, fear, resentment or affection; and faithful to the truth, which is the mother of history, the preserver of great actions, the enemy of oblivion, the witness of the past. the director of the future. In short he must have an open mind, though it may not be an empty mind, and readiness to examine all evidence even though it be spurious. The non-Brahmin scholar may find it difficult to remain true to this spirit of the historian. He is likely to import the spirit of non-Brahmin politics in the examination of the truth or falsity of the ancient literature which is not justifiable. I feel certain that in my research I have kept myself free from such prejudice. In writing about the Shudras I have had present in my mind no other consideration except that of pure history. It is well-known that there is a non-Brahmin movement in this country which is a political movement of the Shudras. It is also well-known that I have been connected with it. But I am sure that the reader will find that I have not made this book a preface to non-Brahmin politics.
I am sensible of the many faults in the presentation of the matter. The book is loaded with quotations, too long and too many. The book is not a work of art and it is possible that readers will find it tedious to go through it. But this fault is not altogether mine. Left to myself, I would have very willingly applied the pruning knife. But the book is written for the ignorant and the uninformed Shudras, who do not know how they came to be what they are. They do not care how artistically the theme is handled. All they desire is a full harvest of material— the bigger the better. Those of them to whom I have shown the manuscript have insisted upon retaining the quotations. Indeed, their avidity for such material was so great that some of them went to the length of insisting that besides giving translations in English in the body of the book I should also add the original Sanskrit texts in an Appendix. While I had to deny their request for the reproduction of the original Sanskrit texts, I could not deny their request for retaining the translations on the ground that the material is not readily available to them. When one remembers that it is the Shudras, who have largely been instrumental in sustaining the infamous system of Chaturvarnya, though it has been the primary cause of their degradation and that only the Shudras can destroy the Chaturvarnya,  it would be easy to realize why I allowed the necessity of educating and thereby preparing the Shudra fully for such a sacred task to outweigh all other considerations which favoured the deletion or if not deletion the abridgement of the quotations.
There are three persons to whom I owe my thanks. Firstly to the writer of Adhyaya LX of the Shanti Parva of the Mahabharata. Whether it isVyasa, Vaiashampayana, Suta, Lomaharshana or Bhrigu it is difficult to say. But whoever he was, he has rendered great service by giving a full description of Paijavana. If he had not described Paijavana as a Shudra, the clue to the origin of the Shudra would have been completely lost. I express my gratitude to the writer for having preserved so important a piece of information for posterity. Without it, this book could not have been written. Secondly, I must thank Prof. Kangle of Ismail Yusuf College, Andheri, Bombay. He has come to my rescue and has checked the translation of Sanskrit shlokas which occur in the book. As I am not a Sanskrit scholar, his help has been to me a sort of an assurance that I have not bungled badly in dealing with the material which is in Sanskrit. The fact that he has helped me does not mean that he is responsible for such faults and errors as may be discovered by my critics. Thanks are also due to Prof. Manohar Chitnis of the Siddharth College, Bombay, who has been good enough to prepare the Index.
I am grateful to Messrs. Charles Scribner's Sons Publishers, New York for their kind permission to reproduce the three maps from Mr. Madison Grant's Passing of the Great Race and which form Appendices II, III and IV of this book.
10th October 1946                                                   
                                                                                                        Part I

 [f1]1 Vol. I, Introduction, P. xxi.


Chapter I


EVERYBODY knows that the Shudras formed the fourth Varna of the Indo-Aryan society. But very few have cared to inquire who were these Shudras and how they came to be the fourth Varna. That such an enquiry is of first-rate importance is beyond question. For, it is worth knowing how the Shudras came to occupy the fourth place, whether it was the result of evolution or it was brought about by revolution.
Any attempt to discover who the Shudras were and how they came to be the fourth Varna must begin with the origin of the Chaturvarnya in the Indo-Aryan society. A study of the Chaturvarnya must in its turn start with a study of the ninetieth Hymn of the Tenth Mandala of the Rig Veda— a Hymn, which is known by the famous name of Purusha Sukta.
 What does the Hymn say? It says[f1] :
1.     Purusha has a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, a thousand feet. On every side enveloping the earth he overpassed (it) by a space of ten fingers.
2.     Purusha himself is this whole (universe), Whatever has been and whatever shall be. He is the Lord of immortality, since (or when) by food he expands.
3.     Such is his greatness, and Purusha is superior to this. All existences are a quarter to him; and three-fourths of him are that which is immortal in the sky.
4.     With three-quarters, Purusha mounted upwards. A quarter of him was again produced here. He was then diffused everywhere over things which eat and things which do not eat.
5.     From him was born Viraj, and from Viraj, Purusha. When born, he extended beyond the earth, both behind and before.
6.     When the gods performed a sacrifice with Purusha as the oblation, the spring was its butter, the summer its fuel, and the autumn its (accompanying) offering.
7.    This victim, Purusha, born in the beginning, they immolated on the sacrificial grass. With him the gods, the Sadhyas, and the rishissacrificed.
8.     From that universal sacrifice were provided curds and butter. It formed those aerial (creatures) and animals both wild and tame.
9.     From that universal sacrifice sprang the rik and saman verses, the metres and the yajus.
10. From it sprang horses, and all animals with two rows of teeth; kine sprang from it; from it goats and sheep.
11. When (the gods) divided Purusha, into how many parts did they cut him up? What was his mouth? What arms (had he)? What (two objects) are said (to have been) his thighs and feet?
12. The Brahmana was his mouth, the Rajanya was made his arms; the being called the Vaishya, he was his thighs; the Shudra sprang from his feet.
13. The moon sprang from his soul (manas), the sun from the eye, Indra and Agni from his mouth and Vayu from his breath.
14. From his navel arose the air, from his head the sky, from his feet the earth, from his ear the (four) quarters; in this manner (the gods) formed the worlds.
15. When the gods, performing sacrifices, bound Purusha as a victim, there were seven sticks (stuck up) for it (around the fire), and thrice seven pieces of fuel were made.
16. With sacrifices the gods performed the sacrifice. These were the earliest rites. These great powers have sought the sky, where are the former Sadhyas, gods."
The Purusha Sukta is a theory of the origin of the Universe. In other words, it is a cosmogony. No nation which has reached an advanced degree of thought has failed to develop some sort of cosmogony. The Egyptians had a cosmogony somewhat analogous with that set out in thePurusha Sukta. According to it,[f2] it was god Khnumu, ' the shaper,' who shaped living things on the potter's wheel, "created all that is, he formed all that exists, he is the father of fathers, the mother of mothers... he fashioned men, he made the gods, he was the father from the beginning... he is the creator of the heaven, the earth, the underworld, the water, the mountains... he formed a male and a female of all birds, fishes, wild beasts, cattle and of all worms." A very similar cosmogony is found in Chapter I of the Genesis in the Old Testament.
Cosmogonies have never been more than matters of academic interest and have served no other purpose than to satisfy the curiosity of the student and to help to amuse children. This may be true of some parts of the Purusha Sukta. But it certainly cannot be true of the whole of it. That is because all verse of the Purusha Sukta are not of the same importance and do not have the same significance. Verses 11 and 12 fall in one category and the rest of the verses fall in another category. Verses other than II and 12 may be regarded as of academic interest. Nobody relies upon them. No Hindu even remembers them. But it is quite different with regard to verses 11 and 12. Primafacie these verses do no more than explain how the four classes, namely. (1) Brahmins or priests, (2) Kshatriyas or soldiers, (3) Vaishyas or traders, and (4) Shudras or menials, arose from the body of the Creator. But the fact is that these verses are not understood as being merely explanatory of a cosmic phenomenon. It would be a grave mistake to suppose that they were regarded by the Indo-Aryans as an innocent piece of a poet's idle imagination. They are treated as containing a mandatory injunction from the Creator to the effect that Society must be constituted on the basis of four classes mentioned in the Sukta.Such a construction of the verses in question may not be warranted by their language. But there is no doubt that according to tradition this is how the verses are construed, and it would indeed be difficult to say that this traditional construction is not in consonance with the intendon of the author of the Sukta. Verses II and 12 of the Purusha Sukta are, therefore, not a mere cosmogony. They contain a divine injunction prescribing a particular form of the constitution of society.
The constitution of society prescribed by the Purusha Sukta is known as Chaturvarnya. As a divine injunction, it naturally became the ideal of the Indo-Aryan society. This ideal of Chaturvarnya was the mould in which the life of the Indo-Aryan community in its early or liquid state was cast. It is this mould, which gave the Indo-Aryan community its peculiar shape and structure.
This reverence, which the Indo-Aryan society had for this ideal mould of Chaturvarnya, is not only beyond question, but it is also beyond description. Its influence on the Indo-Aryan society has been profound and indelible. The social order prescribed by the Purusha Sukta has never been questioned by anyone except Buddha. Even Buddha was not able to shake it, for the simple reason that both after the fall of Buddhism and even during the period of Buddhism there were enough law-givers, who made it their business not only to defend the ideal of the Purusha Suktabut to propagate it and to elaborate it.
To take a few illustrations of this propaganda in support of the Purusha Sukta, reference may be made to the Apastamba Dharma Sutra and the Vasishtha Dharma Sutra. The Apastamba Dharma Sutra states:
"There are four castes—Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras.

Among these, each preceding (caste) is superior by birth to the one following. [f3]For all these excepting Shudras and those who have committed bad actions are ordained (1) the initiation (Upanayan or the wearing of the sacred thread), (2) the study of the Veda and (3) the kindling of the sacred fire (i.e., the right to perform sacrifice)[f4]

This is repeated by Vasishtha Dharma Sutra which says :
"There are four castes (Vamas), Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. Three castes. Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas (are called) twice-born. Their first birth is from their mother; the second from the investiture with the sacred girdle. In that (second birth) the Savitri is the mother, but the teacher is said to be, the father.
They call the teacher father, because he gives instruction in the Veda.[f5] The four castes are distinguished by their origin and by particular sacraments.
There is also the following passage of the Veda : "The Brahmana was his mouth, the Kshatriya formed his arms, the Vaishya his thighs; theShudia was born from his feet."
It has been declared in the following passage that a Shudra shall not receive the sacraments."
Many other law-givers have in parrot-like manner repeated the theme of the Purusha Sukta and have reiterated its sanctity. It is unnecessary to repeat their version of it. All those, who had raised any opposition to the sanctity of the ideal set out in the Purusha Sukta, were finally laid low byManu, the architect of the Hindu society. For Manu did two things. In the first place, he enunciated afresh the ideal of the Purusha Sukta as a part of divine injunction. He said:
"For the prosperity of the worlds, he (lhe creator) from his mouth, armsthighs and feet created the Brahmin, Kshatriya and Vaishya and the Shudra.[f6]
The Brahmin, Kshatriya (and) Vaishya (constitute) the three twice-born castes; but the fourth the shudra has only one birth.[f7]
In this he was no doubt merely following his predecessors. But he went a step further and enunciated another proposition in which he said:

"Veda is the only and ultimate sanction for Dharma.[f8]"

Bearing in mind that the Purusha Sukta is a part of the Veda, it cannot be difficult to realise that Manu invested the social ideal of Chaturvarnyacontained in the Purusha Sukta, with a degree of divinity and infallibility which it did not have before.
A critical examination of the Purusha Sukta therefore becomes very essential.
It is claimed by the Hindus that the Purusha Sukta is unique.This is no doubt a tall claim for an idea which came to birth when the mind of man was primitive and was without the rich endowment of varied thought available in modem times. But there need not be much difficulty in admitting this claim provided it is understood in what respect the Purusha Sukta is unique.
The principal ground for regarding the Purusha Sukta as unique is  that the ideal of social organization, namely, the ideal of Chaturvarnyawhich it upholds, is unique. Is this a sufficient ground for holding the Purusha Sukta as unique? The Purusha Sukta would really have been unique if it had preached a classless society as an  ideal form of society. But what does the Purusha Sukta do? It preaches a class-composed society as its ideal. Can this be regarded as unique? Only a nationalist and a patriot can give an affirmative answer to this question. The existence of classes has been the defacto condition of every society, which is not altogether primitive. It is a normal state of society all over the world where society is in a comparatively advanced state. Looking at it from this point of view, what uniqueness can there be in the Purusha Sukta, when it does no more than recognise the sort of class composition that existed in the Indo-Aryan society?
Notwithstanding this, the Purusha Sukta must be admitted to be unique, though for quite different reasons. The unfortunate part of the matter is that many people do not know the true reasons why the Purusha Sukta should be regarded as unique. But once the true reasons are known, people will not only have no hesitation in accepting that the Purusha Sukta is a unique production of the human intellect but will perhaps be shocked to know what an extraordinary production of human ingenuity it is.
What are the features of the social ideal of the Purusha Sukta, which give it the hall mark of being unique? Though the existence of classes is the de facto condition of every society, nevertheless no society has converted this de facto state of affairs into a de jure connotation of an ideal society. The scheme of the Purusha Sukta is the only instance in which the real is elevated to the dignity of an ideal. This is the first unique feature of the scheme set forth in the Purusha Sukta. Secondly, no community has given the de facto state of class composition a legal effect by accepting it as a de jure connotation of an ideal society. The case of the Greeks is a case in point. Class composition was put forth as an ideal social structure by no less an advocate than Plato. But the Greeks never thought of making it real by giving it the sanction of law. The Purusha Sukta is the only instance in which an attempt was made to give reality to the ideal by invoking the sanction of law. Thirdly, no society has accepted that the class composition is an ideal. At the most they have accepted it as being natural. The Purusha Sukta goes further. It not only regards class composition as natural and ideal, but also regards it as sacred and divine. Fourthly, the number of the classes has never been a matter of dogma in any society known to history. The Romans had two classes. The Egyptians thought three were enough. The Indo-Iranians also had no more than three classes:[f9]  (1) The Athravans (priests) (2) Rathaeshtar (warriors) and (3) the Vastrya-fshuyat (peasantry). The scheme of the Purusha Sukta makes the division of society into four classes a matter of dogma. According to it, there can be neither more nor less. Fifthly, every society leaves a class to find its place vis-a-vis other classes according to its importance in society as may be determined by the forces operating from time to time. No society has an official gradation laid down, fixed and permanent, with an ascending scale of reverence and a descending scale of contempt. The scheme of the Purusha Sukta is unique, inasmuch as it fixes a permanent warrant of precedence among the different classes, which neither time nor circumstances can alter. The warrant of precedence is based on the principle of graded inequality among the four classes, whereby it recognises the Brahmin to be above all, the Kshatriya below the Brahmin but above the Vaishyaand the Shudra, the Vaishya below the Kshatriya but above the Shudra and the Shudra below all.


These are the real reasons why the Purusha Sukta is unique. But the Purusha Sukta is not merely unique, it is also extraordinary. It is extraordinary because it is so full of riddles. Few seem to be aware of these riddles. But anyone who cares to inquire will learn how real in their nature and how strange in their complexion these riddles are. The cosmogony set out in the Purusha Sukta is not the only cosmogony one comes across in the Rig Veda. There is another cosmogony which is expounded in the 72nd Hymn of the Tenth Mandala of the Rig Veda. It reads as follows :[f10]
1.     Let us proclaim with a clear voice of the generation of the gods (the divine company), who, when their praises are recited, look (favourably on the worshipper) in this latter age.
2.     Brahmanaspati filled these (generations of the gods) with breath as a blacksmith (his bellows); in the first age of the gods the existent was born of the non-existent.
3.     In the first age of the gods the existent was born of the non-existent; after that the quarters (of the horizon) were born, and after them the upward-growing (trees).
4.     The earth was born from the upward growing (tree), the quarters were born from the earth; Daksha was born from Adili and afterwards Aditifrom Daksha.
5.     Aditi, who was thy daughter, Daksha, was born; after her, the gods were born, adorable, freed from the bonds of death.
6.     When, gods, you abode in this pool well-arranged, then a pungent dust went forth from you as if you were dancing.
7.     When, gods, you Filled the worlds (with your radiance) as clouds (fill the earth with rain) then you brought fourth the sun hidden in the ocean.
8.     Eight sons (there were) of Aditi who were born from her body; she approached the gods with seven, she sent forth Martanda on high.
9.     With seven sons Aditi went to a former generation, but she bore Martanda for the birth and death (of human beings).
The two cosmologies are fundamentally different in principle as well as in detail. The former explains creation ex nihilo 'being was born of non-being'. The latter ascribes creation to a being which it calls Purusha. Why in one and the same book two such opposite cosmologies should have come to be propounded? Why did the author of the Purusha Sukta think it necessary to posit a Purusha and make all creation emanate from' him?
Any one who reads the Purusha Sukta will find that it starts with the creation of donkyes, horses, goats, etc., but does not say anything about the creation of man. At a point when it would have been natural to speak of the creation of man, it breaks off the chain and proceeds to explain the origin of the classes in the Aryan society. Indeed, the Purusha Sukta appears to make the explaining of the four classes of the Aryan society to be its primary concern. In doing this, the Purusha Sukta stands in complete contrast not only with other theologies but with the other parts of the Rig Veda also.
No theology has made it its purpose to explain the origin of classes in society. Chapter I of the Genesis in the Old Testament, which can be said to be analogous in intention and purpose to the Purusha Sukta, does nothing more than explain how man was created. It is not that social classes did not exist in the old Jewish society. Social classes existed in all societies. The Indo-Aryans were no exception. Nevertheless, no theology has ever thought it necessary to explain how classses arise. Why then did the Purusha Sukta make the explanation of the origin of the social classes its primary concern?
The Purusha Sukta is not the only place in the Rig Veda where a discussion of the origin of creation occurs. There are other places in the Rig Veda where the same subject is referred to. In this connection, one may refer to the following passage in the Rig Veda which reads as follows :[f11]
Rig Veda, i.96.2: "By the first nivid, by the wisdom of Ayu, he (Agni) created these children of men; by his gleaming light the earth and the waters, the gods sustained Agni the giver of the riches."
In this, there is no reference at all to the separate creation of classes, though there is no doubt that even at the time of the Rig Veda, the Indo-Aryan Society had become differentiated into classes; yet the above passage in the Rig Veda ignores the classes and refers to the creation of men only. Why did the Purusha Sukta think it necessary to go further and speak of the origin of the classes?
The Purusha Sukta contradicts the Rig Veda in another respect. The Rig Veda propounds a secular theory regarding the origin of the Indo-Aryans as will be seen from the following texts:
(1)  Rig Veda, i.80:16: "Prayers and hymns were formerly congregated in that Indra, in the ceremony which Atharvan, father Manu, andDadhyanch celebrated.'[f12]
(2)  Rig Veda, i.l 14.2 : "Whatever prosperity or succour father Manu obtained by sacrifice, may we gain all that under thy guidance,  Rudra.[f13]
(3)  Rig Veda, ii.33.13 : "Those pure remedies of yours, O Maruts, those which are most auspicious, ye vigorous gods, those which are beneficent, those which our father Manu chose, those and the blessing and succour of Rudra, I desire. [f14]
(4)  (4) Rig Veda, viii.52.1 : "The ancient friend hath been equipped with the powers of the mighty (gods). Father Manu has prepared hymns to him, as portals of access to the gods.'[f15]
(5)  Rig Veda, iii.3.6 : "Agni, together with the gods, and the children (jantubhih) of Manush, celebrating a multiform sacrifice with hymns.[f16]
(6)  Rig Veda, iv. 37.1 :" Ye gods, Vajas, and Ribhukshana, come to our sacrifice by the path travelled by the gods, that ye, pleasing deities, may institute a sacrifice among these people of Manush (Manusho vikshu) on auspicious • days."[f17]
(7)  Rig Veda, vi.l4.2 : "The people of Manush praise in the sacrifice Agni the invoker.[f18]
From these texts it is beyond question that the rishis who were the authors of the hymns of the Rig Veda regarded Manu as the progenitor of the Indo-Aryans. This theory about Manu being the progenitor of the Indo-Aryans had such deep foundation that it was carried forward by theBrahmanas as well as the Puranas. It is propounded in the Aitareya Brahmana[f19] in the Vishnu Parana [f20] and the Matsya Parana[f21]It is true that they have made Brahma the progenitor of Manu; but the Rig Veda theory of Manu being the progenitor has been accepted and maintained by them[f22] Why does the Purusha Sukta make no mention of Manu ? This is strange because the author of the Purush Sukta seems to be aware of the fact that Manu Svayambhuva is called Viraj and Viraj is called Adi Purusha, [f23]since he too speaks of Virajo adhi Purushah in verse five of the Sukta.
There is a third point in which the Purush Sukta has gone beyond the Rig Veda. The Vedic Aryans were sufficiently advanced in their civilization to give rise to division of labour. Different persons among the Vedic Aryans followed different occupations. That they were conscious of it is evidenced by the following verse:

Rig Veda, i.113.6 : "That some may go in pursuit of power, some in pursuit of fame, some in pursuit of wealth, some in pursuit of work, Ushashas         awakened people so that each may go in pursuit of his special and different way of earning his livelihood."

This is as far as the Rig Veda had gone. The Purusha Sukta goes beyond. It follows up the notion of division of labour and converts the scheme of division of work into a scheme of division of workers into fixed and permanent occupational categories. Why does the Purush Suktacommit itself to such a perversity?
There is another point in which the Purusha Sukta departs from the Rig Veda. It is not that the Rig Veda speaks only of man. It speaks also of the Indo-Aryan nation. This nation was made up of the five tribes, which had become assimilated into one common Indo-Aryan people. The following hymns refer to these five tribes as moulded into a nation:
(1)   Rig Veda, vi.ll.4 :" Agni, whom, abounding in oblations, the five tribes, bringing offerings, honour with prostrations, as if he were a man.[f24]
(2)   Rig Veda, vii.l5.2 : "The wise and youthful master of the house (Agni) who has taken up his abode among the five tribes in every house.'[f25]
There is some difference of opinion as to who these five tribes are. Yaska in his Nirukta says that it denotes Gandharvas, Pitris, Devas,Asuras and Rakshasas. Aupamanyava says that it denotes the four Varnas and the Nishadas. Both these explanations seem to be absurd. Firstly, because the five tribes are praised collectively as in the following hymns:
(1)  Rig Veda, ii.2.10 : "May our glory shine aloft among the five tribes, like the heaven unsurpassable.[f26]
(2)  Rig Veda, vi.46.7 : "Indra, whatever force or vigour exists in the tribe of Nashusa or whatever glory belongs to the five races bring (for us).[f27]             
Such laudatory statements could not have been made if the five tribes included the Shudras. Besides, the word used is not Varnas. The word used is Janah. That it refer to the five tribes and not to the four Varnas and Nishadas is quite clear from the following verse of the Rig Veda:
 Rig Veda, i. 108.8: "If, 0 Indra and Agni, ye are abiding among the Yodus, Turvasas, Druhyus, Anus, Purus, come hither, vigorous heroes from all quarters, and drink the Soma which has been poured out.[f28]
That these five tribes had been moulded into one Aryan people is clear from the Atharva Veda (iii.24.2) which says "these five regions, the five tribes springings from Manu."
A sense of unity and a consciousness of kind can alone explain why the Rishis of the Rig Vedic hymns came to refer to the five tribes in such manner. The questions are: why did the Purusha Sukta not recognise this unity of the five tribes and give a mythic explanation of their origin? Why instead did it recognise the communal divisions within the tribes? Why did the Purusha Sukta regard communalism more important than nationalism?
These are some of the riddles of the Purush Sukta , which come to light when one compares it with the Rig Veda. There are others, which emerge when one proceeds to examine the Purusha Sukta from a sociological point of view.
Ideals as norms are good and are necessary. Neither a society nor an individual can do without a norm. But a norm must change with changes in time and circumstances. No norm can be permanently fixed. There must always be room for revaluation of the values of our norm. The possibility of revaluing values remains open only when the institution is not invested with sacredness. Sacredness prevents revaluation of its values. Once sacred, always sacred. The Purusha Sukta   makes the Chaturvarnya a sacred institution, a divine ordination. Why did thePurusha Sukta make a particular form of social order so sacred as to be beyond criticism and beyond change? Why did it want to make it a permanent ideal beyond change and even beyond criticism? This is the first riddle of the Purusha Sukta which strikes a student of sociology.
In propounding the doctrine of Chaturvarnya, the Purush Sukta plays a double game. It proceeds first to raise the real, namely, the existence of the four classes in the Indo-Aryan Society, to the status of an ideal. This is a deception because the ideal is in no way different from facts as they exist. After raising the real to the status of the ideal, it proceeds to make a show of giving effect to what it regards as an ideal. This again is a deception because the ideal already exists in fact. This attempt of the Purusha Sukta to idealise the real and to realise the ideal, is a kind of political jugglery, the like of which, I am sure, is not to be found in any other book of religion. What else is it if not a fraud and a deception? To idealise the real, which more often than not is full of inequities, is a very selfish thing to do. Only when a person finds a personal advantage in things as they are that he tries to idealise the real. To proceed to make such an ideal real is nothing short of criminal. It means perpetuating inequity on the ground that whatever is once settled is settled for all times. Such a view is opposed to all morality. No society with a social conscience has ever accepted it. On the contrary, whatever progress in improving the terms of associated life between individuals and classes has been made in the course of history, is due entirely to the recognition of the ethical doctrine that what is wrongly settled is never settled and must be resettled. The principle underlying the Purush Sukta is, therefore, criminal in intent and anti-social in its results. For, it aims to perpetuate an illegal gain obtained by one class and an unjust wrong inflicted upon another. What can be the motive behind this jugglery of thePurusha Sukta ? This is the second riddle.
The last and the greatest of all these riddles, which emerge out of a sociological scrutiny of the Purusha Sukta , is the one relating to the position of the Shudra. The Purusha Sukta concerns itself with the origin of the classes, and says they were created by God—a doctrine which no theology has thought it wise to propound. This in itself is a strange thing. But what is astonishing is the plan of equating different classes to different parts of the body of the Creator. The equation of the different classes to different parts of the body is not a matter of accident. It is deliberate. The idea behind this plan seems to be to discover a formula which will solve two problems, one of fixing the functions of the four classes and the other of fixing the gradation of the four classes after a preconceived plan. The formula of equating different classes to the different parts of the body of the Creator has this advantage. The part fixes the gradation of the class and the gradation in its turn fixes the function of the class. The Brahmin is equated to the mouth of the Creator. Mouth being the noblest part of the anatomy, the Brahmin becomes the noblest of the four classes. As he is the noblest in the scale, he is given the noblest function, that of custodian of knowledge and learning. TheKshatriya is equated to the arms of the Creator. Among the limbs of a person, arms are next below the mouth. Consequently, the Kshatriya is given an order of precedence next below the Brahmin and is given a function which is second only to knowledge, namely, fighting. The Vaishyais equated to the thighs of the Creator. In the gradation of limbs the thighs are next below the arms. Consequently, the Vaishya is given an order of precedence next below the Kshatriya and is assigned a function of industry and trade which in name and fame ranks or rather did rank in ancient times below that of a warrior. The Shudra is equated to the feet of the Creator. The feet form the lowest and the most ignoble part of the human frame. Accordingly, the Shudra is placed last in the social order and is given the filthiest function, namely, to serve as a menial.
Why did the Purusha Sukta choose such a method of illustrating the creation of the four classes? Why did it equate the Shudras to the feet? Why did it not take some other illustration to show how the four classes were created. It is not that Purusha is the only stock simile used to explain creation. Compare the explanation of the origin of the Vedas contained in the Chhandogya Upanishad. It says[f29]
"Prajapati infused warmth into the worlds, and from them so heated he drew forth their essences, viz., Agni (fire) from the earth, Vayu (wind) from the air, and Surya (the sun) from the sky. He infused warmth into these three deities, and from them so heated he drew forth their essences,— from Agni the ric verses, from Vayu the yajus verses and from Surya the saman verses. He then infused heat into this triple science, and from it so heated he drew forth its essences—from ric verses the syllable bhuh, from yajus verses bhuvah, and from Samanverses svar."
Here is an explanation of the origin of the Vedas from different deities. So far as the Indo-Aryans are concerned, there was no dearth of them. There were thirty crores of them. An explanation of the origin of the four Varnas from four gods would have maintained equality of dignity by birth of all the four classes. Why did the Purusha Sukta not adopt this line of explanation?
Again, would it not have been possible for the author of. the Purusha Sukta to say that the different classes were born from the different mouths of the Purusha. Such a conception could not have been difficult because the Purusha of the Purush Sukta has one thousand heads, enough to assign one species of creation to one of his heads. Such a method of explaining creation could not have been unknown to the author of thePurusha Sukta. For we find it used by the Vishnu Purana to explain the origin of the different Vedas as may be seen from the following extract:2[f30]
"From his eastern mouth Brahma formed the Gayatd, the ric verses, the trivrit, the sama-rathantara and of sacrifices, the agnistoma. From his southern mouth he created the yajus verses, the trishtubh metre, the panchadasa stoma, the brihatsaman, and the ukthya. From his westernmouth he formed the saman verses, the jagati metre, the saptadasa stoma, the Vairupa, and the atiratra. From his northern mouth he formed the ekavimsa, the atharvan, the aptoryaman with the anushtubh and viraj metres."
The Harivansa has another way of explaining the origin of the Vedas. According to it:[f31]
"The god fashioned the Rig Veda with the Yajus from his eyes, the Sama Veda from the tip of his tongue, and the Atharvan from his head."
Assuming that for some reason the author of the Purusha Sukta could not avoid using the body of the Creator and its different parts for explaining the origin and the relation of the four classes, the question still remains as to why he chose to equate the different parts of the Purushato the different classes in the manner in which he does.
The importance of this question is considerably heightened when one realises that the Purusha Sukta is not the only instance in which the different parts of the body of the Creator are used as illustrations to explain the origin of the different classes in society. The same explanation is given by the sage Vaishampayana to explain the origin of the various classes of priests employed in the performance of sacrifices. But what a difference is there between the two! The explanation of Vaishampayana which is reported in the Harivarnsa reads as follows: [f32]
"Thus the glorious Lord Hari Narayana, covering the entire waters, slept on the world which had become one sea, in the midst of the vast expanse of fluid (rajas), resembling a mighty ocean, himself free from passion (virajaskah), with mighty arms; Brahmans know him as the undecaying. Invested through austere fervour with the light of his own form and clothed with triple time (past, present and future) the lord then slept. Purushotiama (Vishnu) is whatever is declared to be the highest. Purusha the sacrifice, and everything else which is known by the name of Purusha. Here how the Brahmins devoted to sacrifice, and called ritvijas, were formerly produced by him from his own body for offering sacrifices. The Lord created from his mouth the Brahman, who is the chief, and the udgatri, who chants the Saman, from his arms the hotri and the adhvaryu . He then... created the prastotri, the maitravaruna, and the pratishthatri, from his belly the pratiharti and the potri, from his thighs the achhavaka and the neshtri, from his hands the agnidhra and the sacrificial brahmanya, from his arms the gravan and the sacrificialunnetri. Thus did the divine Lord of the world create the sixteen excellent ritvijas, the utterers of all sacrifices. Therefore this Purusha is formed of sacrifice and is called the Veda; and all the Vedas with the Vedangas, Upanishads and ceremonies are formed of his essence."
There were altogether seventeen different classes of priests required for the performance of a sacrifice. It could never be possible for anyone attempting to explain the origin of each by reference to a distinct part of the body of the Creator to avoid using the feet of the Purusha as the origin of a class, the limbs of the Purusha being so few and the number of priests being so many. Yet what does Vaishampayana do? He does not mind using the same part of the Creator's body to explain the origin of more than one class of priests. He most studiously avoids using the feet as the origin of anyone of them.
The situation becomes completely intriguing when one compares the levity with which the Shudras are treated in the Purusha Sukta with the respect with which the Brahmins are treated in the Hari-varnsa in the matter of their respective origins. Is it because of malice that the Purusha Sukta did not hesitate to say that the Shudra was born from the feet of the Purusha and that his duty was to serve? If so what is the cause of this malice?
The riddles about the Shudras mentioned above are those which arise out of a sociological scrutiny of the Purusha Sukta. There are other riddles regarding the position of the Shudra which arise out of later developments of the ideal of Chaturvarnya. To appreciate these results it is necessary first to take note of these later developments. The later developments of Chaturvarnya are mainly two. First is the creation of the fifth class next below the Shudras. The second is the separation of the Shudras from the first three Varnas. These changes have become so integrated with the original scheme of the Purusha Sukta that they have given rise to peculiar terms and expressions so well-known that everybody understands what they stand for. These terms are : Savarnas, Avarnas, Dvijas, non-Dvijas, and Traivarnikas.  They stand to indicate the sub-divisions of the original four classes and the degree of separation between them. It is necessary to take note of the relative position of these classes because they disclose a new riddle. If this riddle has not caught the eye of the people, it is because of two reasons. Firstly, because students have not cared to note that these names are not mere names but that they stand for definite rights and privileges, and secondly, because they have not cared to find out whether the groupings made under these names are logical having regard to the rights and privileges they connote.
Let us therefore see what is the de jure connotation of these terms. Savarna is generally contrasted with Avarna. Savarna means one who belongs to one of the four Varnas. Avarna means one who does not belong to any one of the four Varnas. The Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyasand Shudras are Savarnas. The Untouchables or Ati-Shudras are called Avarnas, those who have no Varna. Logically, theBrahmins,Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras are within the Chaturvarnya. Logically, the Untouchables or the Ati-Shudras are outside the Chaturvarnya.Dvija is generally contrasted with non-Dvija. Dvija literally means twice-born and non-Dvija means one who is born only once. The distinction is based on the right to have Upanayana. The Upanayana is treated as a second birth. Those who have the right to wear the sacred thread are called Dvijas. Those who have no right to wear it are called non-Dvijas. The Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas have the right to wear the sacred thread. Logically, they are Dvijas. The Shudras and the Ati-Shudras have no right to wear the sacred thread. Logically, they are bothnon-Dvijas. The Traivarnika is contrasted with the Shudra. But there is nothing special in this contrast. It conveys the same distinction which is conveyed by the distinction between the Dvijas and the non-Dvijas except the fact that the contrast is limited to the Shudra and does not extend to the Ati-Shudra. This is probably because this terminology came into being before the rise of the Ati-Shudras as a separate class.
Bearing in mind that both the Shudra and the Ati-Shudra are non-Dvijas, why then is the Shudra regarded as Savarna and the Ati-Shudra asAvarna ? Why is the former within and why is the latter outside the Chaturvarnya ? The Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras are all within the four corners of the Chaturvarnya. They are all Savarnas. Why then is the Shudra denied the right of the Traivarnikas ?
Can there be a greater riddle than the riddle of the Shudras Surely, it calls for investigation and explanation as to who they were and how they came to be the fourth Varna in the Aryan Society.
chapter II
HAS the Brahmanic literature any explanation to offer which can account for the origin of the Shudras? There is no doubt that the Brahmanic literature is full of legends regarding creation which touch upon the creation of the universe, of man and of the different Vamas. Whether or not they furnish any clue to discover the origin of the Shudras, there can be no doubt that all such theories should find a place in a book which is concerned with the problem of the Shudras if for no other reason than that of assembling all material relating to the Shudras in one place and making their story complete. It would be better to take each piece of the Brahmanic literature separately, and note what contribution it has to make to the subject.
To begin with the Vedas. As to the Rig Veda, the legend about creation to be found in its Sukta known as the Purusha Sukta has already been set out in the previous chapter. It now remains to take note of the legends contained in the other Vedas.
There are two recensions of the Yajur Veda : (1) the White Yajur Veda and (2) the Black Yajur Veda. To take the White Yajur Veda first. TheVajasaneyi Samhita of the White Yajur Veda sponsors two theories. One is a mere reproduction of the Purusha Sukta of the Rig Veda with this difference that it has 22 verses, while the original as it occurs in the Rig Veda has only 16 verses. The six additional verses in the White Yajur Veda read as follows :
17. Brought forth from the waters and from the essence of the earth, he was produced by Vishvakannan in the beginning. Tvashta gives him form; that is the Universe of Purusha on all sides in the beginning. 
18. 1 know this great Purusha, of the colour of the sun, beyond darkness. Only by knowing him does one go beyond death; there is no other path for going.
19. Prajapati moves in the interior of the womb; though unborn, he is born in many forms. Wise men see his source; wise men desire the place of the Marichis.
20. He who shines for the gods, he who is the priest of the gods, he who was born before the gods,—salutation to that shining offspring of Brahma.
21. The gods, generating the shining offspring of Brahma, said in the beginning; "That Brahmin who knows thus,— the gods will be under hiscontrol."
22. Sri and Laxmi are his wives; the day and night his sides; the Stars his ornament; the Ashwins his bright face. Grant me my desires; grant me that; grant me everything.
The second explanation contained in the Vajasaneyi Samhita is quite different from the Purusha Sukta. It reads as follows :
V.S., xiv,28. *[f33]"He lauded with one. Living beings were formed. He lauded with three the brahman was created; Brahmanaspati was the ruler. He lauded with five existing things were created; bhutanampati was ruler.  He lauded with seven: die seven rishis were created: Dhatriwas the ruler. He lauded with nine: the Fathers were created: Aditi was the ruler. He lauded with eleven: the seasons were created: the Artavaswere the rulers. He lauded with thirteen: the months were created: the year was the ruler. He lauded with fifteen: the Kshatra (the Kshatriya)was created: Indra was the ruler. He lauded with seventeen: animals were created: Brihaspati was the ruler. He lauded with nineteen: theShudra and the Arya (Vaishya ) were created: day and night were the rulers. He lauded with twenty-one: animals with undivided hoofs were created: Varuna was the ruler. He lauded with twenty-three: small animals were created: Pushan was the ruler. He lauded with twenty-five: wild animals were created: Vayu was the ruler (compare R.V., x.90.8). He lauded with twenty-seven: heaven and earth separated: Vasus, Rudrasand Adityas separated after them: they were the rulers. He lauded with thirty-one: living beings were created: the first and second halves of the month were the rulers. He lauded with thirty one: existing things were tranquillized: Prajapati Parameshthin was the ruler."
Now to turn to the Black Yajur Veda . The Taittriya Samhita of the Black Yajur Veda gives altogether five explanations. The one at iv. 3, 10 is the same as has been put forth by the Vajasaneyi Samhita of the White Yajur Vedaa-t (xiv.28) and which has been reproduced earlier. Of the rest those which narrate the origin of the Shudra are set out below:
T.S., ii.4.13.1.[f34]—"The gods were afraid of the Rajanya when he was in the womb. They bound him with bonds when he was in the womb. Consequently, this Rajanya is born bound. If he were born unbound he would go on slaying his enemies. In regard to whatever Rajanya any one desires that he should be born unbound, and should go on slaying his enemies, let him offer for him this Aindra-Barhaspatya oblation. ARajanya has the character of Indra, and a Brahman is Brihaspati. It is through the Brahman that anyone releases the Rajanya from his bond. The golden bond, a gift, manifestly releases from the bond that fetters him."
(2) T.S., vii. 1.1.4.[f35]Prajapad desired, may I propagate.' He formed the Trivrit (stoma) from his mouth. After it were produced the deity Agni, the metre Gayain, the Saman (called) Rathantara, of men the Brahmin, of beasts the goats. Hence they are the chief (mukhyah)because they were created from the mouth (mukhatah). From (his) breast, from his arms,- he formed the. Panchadasa {stoma) After it were created the god, the indra, the Trishtubh metre, the Saman (called) Brihat, of men the Rajanya, of beasts the sheep. Hence they are vigorous, because they were created from vigour. From (his) middle he foamed the Saptadasa (stoma). After it were created the gods (called) the Vishvedevas, the Jagati metre, the Saman called the Vairupa of men the Vaishya, of beasts kine. Hence they are to be eaten, because they were created from the receptacle of food. Wherefore they are more numerous than others, for the most numerous deities were created after (the Saptadasa), From his foot he formed the Ekavimsa (Stoma.). After it were created the Anushtubh metre, the saman called vairaja, of men the.Shudra, of beasts the horse. Hence these two, both the horse and the Shudra, are transporters of (other) creatures. Hence (too) the Shudra is  incapacitated for sacrifice,  because no deities were created after (the Ekavimsa). Hence (too) these two subsist by their feet, for they were created from the foot.
Coming to the Atharva Veda, there are altogether four explanations. One of these is the same as the Purusha Sukta of the Rig Veda. It occurs at xix.6. The others are as stated below :
(1)  A.V.[f36] iv.6.1.—The Brahman was born the first with ten heads and ten faces. He first drank the soma; he made poison powerless.
(2)  A.V., [f37]xv.S.I.—He (the Vratya) became filled with passion thence sprang the Rajanya.
(3)  A.V., [f38]xv.9.1.—Let the king to whose house the Vratya who knows this, comes as a guest, cause him to be respected as superior to himself. So doing he does no injury to his royal rank, or to his realm. From him arose the Brahman (Brahmin) and the Kshattra (Kshatriya).They said Into whom shall we enter,' etc.


To proceed to the Brahmanas. The Satapatha Brahmana contains six explanations. There are two which concern themselves with the creation of the Varnas. Of the two, the one which speaks of the origin of the Shudras is given below :
S.B[f39] xiv.4.2.23.—"Brahma (here, according to the commentator, existing in the form of Agni and representing the Brahmana caste) was formerly this (universe), one only. Being one, it did not develop. It energetically created an excellent form, the Kshattra, viz., those among the gods who are powers (Kshattrani), Indra, Varuna, Soma, Rudra, Parjanya, Yama, Mrityu, Isana, Hence nothing is superior to the Kshatra.Therefore, the Brahmana sits below the Kshatriya at the Rajasuya sacrifice; he confers that glory on the Kshattra (the royal power). This, the Brahma, is the source of the Kshattra. Hence although the king attains supremacy, he at the end resorts to the Brahman as his source. Whoever destroys him (the Brahman) destroys his own source. He becomes most miserable, as one who has injured a superior. He did not develop. He created the Vis, viz., those classes of gods who are designated by troops, Vasus, Rudras, Adityas, Visvedevas, Maruts. He did not develop. He created the Shudra class Pushan. This earth is Pushan ; for she nourishes all that exists. He did not develope. He energetically created an excellent form. Justice (Dharma). This is the ruler (Kshattra) of, the ruler (Kshattra), namely. Justice. Hence nothing is superior to Justice. Therefore the weaker seeks (to overcome) the stronger by Justice, as by a king. This justice is truth. In consequence they say of a man who speaks truth, 'he speaks justice.' For this is both of these. This is the Brahma, Kshattra, Vis and Shudra. Through Agni it became Brahma among the gods, the Brahmana among men, through the (divine) Kshatriya a (human) Kshatriya, through the (divine) Vaishya a (human)Vaishya, through the (divine) Shudra a (human) Shudra. Wherefore it is in Agni among the gods and in a Brahman among men that they seek after an abode.
The Taittriya Brahman is responsible for the following explanation:
 T.B.[f40] i.2.6.7.—"The Brahmana caste is sprung from the gods; the Shudras from the Asuras."
(1)  T.B., [f41]iii. 2.3.9.—"This Shudra has sprung from non-existence."



Here is a complete collection of all the Brahmanic speculations on the origin of the four classes and of the Shudras. The ancient Brahmins were evidently conscious of the fact that the origin of the four classes was an unusual and uncommon social phenomenon and that the place of the Shudra in it was very unnatural and that this called for some explanation. Otherwise, it would be impossible to account for these innumerable attempts to explain the origin of the Chaturvarnya and of the Shudra.
But what is one to say of these explanations? The variety of them is simply bewildering. Some allege that Purusha was the origin of the fourVarnas, and some attribute their origin to Brahma, some to Prajapati and some to Vratya. The same source gives differing explanations. The White Yajur Veda has two explanations, one in terms of Purusha, the other in terms of Prajapati. The Black Yajur Veda has three explanations to offer. Two are in terms of Prajapati, the third in terms of Brahman. The Atharva Veda has four explanations, one in terms of Purusha, second in terms of Brahman, third in terms of Vratya and fourth quite different from the first three. Even when the theory is the same, the details are not the same. Some explanations such as those in terms of Prajapti, or Brahma are theological. Others in terms of Manu or Kasyapa are in humanistic terms. It is imagination running riot. There is in them neither history nor sense. Prof. Max Muller commenting on the Brahmanas has said:
"The Brahmanas represent no doubt a most interesting phase in the history of the Indian mind, but judged by themselves, as literary productions, they are most disappointing. No one would have supposed that at so early a period, and in so primitive a state of society, there could have risen up a literature which for pedantry and downright absurdity can hardly be matched anywhere. There is no lack of striking thoughts, of bold expressions, of sound reasoning, and curious traditions in these collections. But these are only like the fragments of a torso, like precious gems set in brass and lead. The general character of these works is marked by shallow and insipid grandiloquence, by priestly conceit, and antiquarian pedantry. It is most important to the historian that he should know how soon the fresh and healthy growth of a nation  can be blighted by priestcraft and superstition. It is most important that we should know that nations are liable to these epidemics in their youth as well as in their dotage. These works deserve to be studied as the physician studies the twaddle of idiots, and the raving of madmen."[f42]
On reading these Brahmanic speculations on the origin of the four Varnas and particularly of the Shudras one is very much reminded of these words of Prof. Max Muller. All these speculations are really the twaddles of idiots and ravings of madmen and as such they are of no use to the student of history who is in search of a natural explanation of a human problem. 
So much for the Brahmanic view of the origin of the Shudra. Turning to the Brahmanic view of the civil status of the Shudra, what strikes one is the long list of (disabilities, accompanied by a most dire system of pains and-penalties to which. the Shudra is subjected by the Brahmaiac law-givers.
The disabitities and penalties of the Shudra found in the Samhitas and the Brahmanas were few, as may be seen from the following extracts:
I.          According to the Kathaka Samhita (xxxi.2) and the Maitrayani Samhita(iv.1.3;i.8.3)
"A shudra should not be allowed to milk the cow whose milk is used for Agnihotra."
II.        The Satapatha Brahmana (iii.1.1.10), the Maitrayani Samita (vii.l.l.6) and also the Panchavirnsa Brahmana (vi.l.ll) say:
"The Shudra must not be spoken to when performing a sacrifice and a Shudra must not be present when a sacrifice is being performed."
III.      The Satapatha Brahmana (xiv.l.31) and the Kathaka Samhita (xi.lO) further provide that :
"The Shudra must not be admitted to Soma drink."
 The Aitareya Brahmana (vii.29.4) and the Panchavirnsa Brahmana (vi.l.ll) reached the culminating point when they say:
"Shudra is a servant of another (and cannot be anything else)."
But what in the beginning was a cloud no bigger than a man's hand, seems to have developed into a storm, which has literally overwhelmed the Shudras. For, as will be seen from the extracts given from later penal legislation by the Sutrakaras like Apastamba, Baudhayana, etc. and theSmritikaras like Manu and others, the growth of the disabilities of the Shudras has been at a maddening speed and to an extent which is quite unthinkable.
The disabilities are so deadening that it would be impossible to believe them unless one sees them in cold print. They are, however, so numerous that it is impossible to present them in their fullness. To enable those, who do not know them, to have some idea of these disabilities, I have assembled below in one place illustrative statements by the different Sutrakaras and Smritikaras relating to the disabilities of the Shudras scattered in their Law Books.


(A) The.Apastamba DharmaSutra says :
"There are four castes—-Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. amongst these, each preceding (caste) is superior by birth to theone following*[f43] :
For all these, excepting Shudras and those who have committed bad actions are ordained. (1) the initiation (Upanayaaa or the wearing of the sacred thread), (2) the study of the Veda and (3) the kindling of the sacred fire (i.e„ the right to perform sacrifices).[f44]"
(B) This is what the Vasishtha Dharma Sutra says:
"There are four castes (Varna) Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras.
Three castes, Brahmanas, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas (are called) twice-born.
Their first-birth is from the mother; the second from the investiture with the sacred girdle. In that (second birth) the Savitri is the mother, but the teacher is said to be the father.
They call the teacher father, because he gives instruction in the Veda.[f45]
The four castes are distinguished by their origin and by particular sacraments.
There is also the following passage of the Veda: ' The Brahmana was his mouth, the Kshatriya formed his arms: the Vaishya his thighs; the Shudra was born from his feet.'
It has been declared in the following passage of the Veda that a Shudra shall not receive the sacraments. 'He created the Brahmana with the Gayatri (metre), the Kshatriya with the Trishtubh, the Vaishya with the Jagati, the Shudra without any metre."[f46]
(C) The Manu Smriti propounds the following view on the subject:
"For the prosperity of the worlds, he (the creator) from his mouth, arms, thighs and feet created the Brahmana, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra.[f47]
The Brahmans, Kshatriya (and) Vaishya constitute the three twice-born castes, but the fourth, the Shudra has only one birth."[f48]
(A) The Apastamba Dharma Sutra says :
"(A Traivarnika) shall never study (the Veda) in a burial ground nor anywhere near it within the throw of a Sarnya.
If a village has been built over a burial ground or its surface has been cultivated as a field, the recitation of the Veda in such a place is not prohibited.
But if that place is known to have been a burial ground, he shall not study (there).
A Shudra and an outcaste are (included by the term) burial-ground, (and the rule given, Sutra 6 applies to them).
Some declare, that (one ought to avoid only to study) in the same house (where they dwell).
But if (a student and) a Shudra woman merely look at each other, the recitation of the Veda must be interrupted.[f49]
Food touched by a (Brahmana or other high-caste person) who is impure, becomes impure but not unfit for eating.
But what has been brought (be it touched or not) by an impure Shudra must not be eaten. A Shudra touches him, (then he shall leave off eating)."[f50]
(B) The Vishnu Smriti says :
"He must not cause a member of a twice born caste to be carried  out by a Shudra (even though he be a kinsman of the deceased). Nor a Shudra by a member of a twice-born caste.
A father and a mother shall be carried out by their sons; (who  are equal in caste to their parents).
But Shudras must never carry out a member of a twice-born caste, even though he be their father."[f51]
(C) The Vasishtha Dharma Sutra prescribes :
"Now therefore, we will declare what may be eaten and what may not be eaten.
Food given by a physician, a hunter, a woman of bad character, a mace-bearer, a thief, an Abhisasta, and eunuch, (or) an outcaste must not be eaten.
Nor that given by a miser, one who has performed the initiatory ceremony of a Srauta-sacrifice, a prisoner, a sick person, a seller of the Soma plant, a carpenter, a washerman, a dealer in spirituous liquor, a spy, an usurer, (or) a cobbler.
Nor that given by a Shudra.[f52]
Some call that Shudra race a burial-ground.
Therefore the Veda must not be recited in the presence of a Shudra."
Now they quote also the (following) verses which Yama proclaimed :
The wicked Shudra-race is manifestly a burial-ground. Therefore (the Veda) must never be recited in the presence of a Shudra.[f53]
Some become worthy receptacles of gifts through sacred learning, and some through the practice of austerities. But that Brahmana whose stomach does not contain the food of a Shudra, is even the worthiest receptacle of all.[f54]
If a Brahmana dies with the food of a Shudra in his stomach, he will become a village pig (in his next life) or be born in the family of that Shudra.
For though a (Brahmana) whose body is nourished by the essence of a Shudra's food may daily recite the Veda, though he may offer (an Agnihotra) or mutter (prayers, nevertheless) he will not find the path that leads upwards.
But if, after eating the food of a Shudra, he has conjugal intercourse, (even) his sons (begotten on a wife of his own caste) will belong to the giver of the food (i.e., to the Shudra) and he shall not ascend to heaven.[f55]
(D)TheManuSmriti says:
"He (Brahmin) may not dwell in the kingdom of a Shudra nor in one full of unrighteous people, nor in one invaded by hosts of heretics nor in one possessed by low-born men.[f56]
A Brahmin who performs a sacrifice for a Shudra should not be invited to dine with other Brahmins at a Shraddha ceremony. His company will destroy all merit that which may otherwise be obtained from such a dinner.[f57]
One should carry out by the southern town-gate a dead Shudra, but the twice-born by the western, northern and eastern (gates) respectively.
(A)  The Apastamba Dharma Sutra says :
"A Brahmana shall salute stretching forward his right arm on a level with his ear, a Kshatriya holding it on a level with the breast, a Vaishya holding it on a level with the waist, a Shudra holding it low (and) stretching forward the joined hands.[f58]
And when returning the salute of (a man belonging) to the first (three) castes, the last syllable of the name of the person addressed is produced to the length of three moras.[f59]
If a Shudra comes as a guest (to a Brahmana) he shall give him some work to do. He may feed him, after (that has been performed. To feed him without asking him first to do some work is to do him honour.)
Or the slaves (of the Brahmana householder) shall fetch (rice) from the royal stores, and honour the Shudra as a guest."[f60]
(B) The Vishnu Smriti prescribes :
"The same punishment (payment of hundred Panas) is also ordained for hospitably entertaining a Shudra or religious ascetic at an oblation to the gods or to the manes.'"[f61]
(C) The Manu Smriti enjoins that :
One should consider a Brahmana ten years old and a Kshatriya a hundred years old as father and son; but of them the Brahman (is) the father.
Wealth, kindred, age, sects (and) knowledge as the fifth; those are the causes of respect, the most important (is) the last (mentioned).
In whom among the three (higher) castes the most and the best of (those) five may be he is here worthy of respect; a Shudra (is not worthy of respect on the ground of his wealth or knowledge no matter how high they are. It is only on the ground of his age and that too only if) he has attained the tenth (decade of his life that he becomes worthy of respect and not before.)[f62]
  For not by years, nor by grey hair, not by wealth, nor kindred (is superiority); the seers made the rule—Who knows the Veda completely, he is great among us.
Of Brahmins, superiority (is) by knowledge, but of Kshatriyas by valour, of Vaishyas by reason of property (and) wealth, and of Shudras by age.
One is not, therefore, aged because his head is grey; whoever, although a youth, has perused (the Vedas), him the gods consider an elder.[f63]
Now a Kshatriya is not called a guest in a Brahmin's house, nor a Vaishya nor a Shudra; neither is a friend, the kinsman, nor a Guru (of the householder). (That is, a Brahmin has alone the right to have the honour of being treated as a guest in a Brahmin's house).
But if a Kshatriya come as a guest to the house after the said Brahmins have eaten one should give him food (if) he wishes.
If a Vaishya (or) Shudra come to the house as guests, the Brahmin should give them food but with the servants, using kindness."[f64]
(A) According to the Apastamba Dharma Sutra :
He who has killed a Kshatriya shall give a thousand cows (to Brahmins for the expiation of the act).
He shall give, a hundred cows for the killing of a Vaishya, (only) ten for a Shudra.[f65]
(B) According to the Gautama Dharma Sutra :
"A Kshatriya (shall be fined) one hundred (Karshapanas) if he abuses a Brahmana.
In case of an assault (on a Brahmana) twice as much.
A Vaishya (who abuses a Brahmana, shall pay) one and a half (times as much as a Kshatriya).
But a Brahmana (who abuses) a Kshatriya (shall pay) fifty (Karshapanas).
 One half of that amount (if he abuses) a Vaishya.  And if he abuses a Shudra nothing."[f66]                               
(C) According toBrihaspati's Dharma Shastra :
"For a Brahmin abusing a Kshatriya, the fine shall be half of a hundred (fifty) Panas; for abusing a Vaishya, half of fifty (twenty-five) Panas, for abusing a         Shudra twelve and a half.
This punishment has been declared for abusing a virtuous Shudra (i.e., a Shudra who accepts his low status and does willingly the duties attached to that status) who has committed no wrong; no offence is imputable to a Brahmin for abusing a Shudra devoid of virtue.
A Vaishya shall be fined a hundred (Panas) for reviling a Kshatriya; a Kshatriya reviling a Vaishya shall have to pay half of that amount as a fine.
In the case of a Kshatriya reviling a Shudra the fine shall be twenty Panas; in the case of a Vaishya, the double amount is declared to be the proper fine by persons learned in law.
A Shudra shall be compelled to pay the first fine for abusing a Vaishya; the middling fine for abusing a Kshatriya; and the highest fine for abusing a Brahmin.[f67]
(D) According to the Manu Smruti:
"A Kshatriya who reviles a Brahmin ought to be fined one hundred (Panas); a Vaishya one hundred and fifty or two hundred, but a Shudra ought to receive corporal punishment.
A Brahmin should be fined fifty if he has thrown insult on a Kshatriya, but the fine shall be a half of fifty if on a Vaishya and twelve if on a Shudra."[f68]
In the murder of a Kshatriya, one fourth (part) of the penance for slaying a Brahman is declared to be the proper penance; an eighth part in the case of a Vaishya; and in (the case of) a Shudra (who) lives virtuously, one sixteenth part must be admitted (as the proper penance).
But if one of the highest of the twice-born (a Brahmin) slay a Kshatriya involuntarily he may, in order to cleanse himself give a thousand cows and a bull.                                                                            
Or let him for three years (with senses) subdued and locks braided, follow the observances of one who has slain a Brahmin, living in a place rather far from the town, his dwelling place the foot of a tree.
The highest of a twice-born (the Brahmin) should practise just this expiation for a year on having slain a Vaishya who lives virtuously and give one hundred and one (heads) of cattle.
The slayer of a Shudra should practise exactly all these observances for six months; or he may give to a priest ten white cows and a bull.[f69]
(E) According to the Vishnu Smriti:
"With whatever limb an inferior insults or hurts his superior in caste, of that limb the king shall cause him to be deprived.
If he places himself on the same seat with his superior, he shall be banished with a mark on his buttocks. If he spits on him he shall lose both lips. If he breaks wind against him, he shall lose his hind parts. If he uses abusive language, his tongue.
If a low-born man through pride give instruction (to a member of the highest caste) concerning his duty, let the king order hot oil to be dropped into his mouth.
If a Shudra man mentions the name or caste of a superior revealingly, an iron pin ten inches long shall be thrust into his mouth (red hot)."[f70]
(A) According to the Brihaspati Smriti :
"A Shudra teaching the precepts of religion or uttering the words of the Veda, or insulting a Brahmin shall be punished by cutting out his tongue."[f71]
(B) According to the Gautama Dharma Sutra :
"Now if he listens intentionally to (a recitation of) the Veda, his ears shall be filled with (molten) tin or lac.
If he recites (Vedic texts), his tongue shall be cut out.
If he remembers them, his body shall be split in twain."[f72]
(C) According to the Manu Smriti:
One who teaches for hire, also one who learns by paying hire (a Shudra) teacher and one who learns from him are unfit for being invited at the performance in honour of the Devas and Pitris.[f73]
One may not give advice to a Shudra, nor (give him) the remains (of food) or of butter that has been offered.
And one may not teach him the law or enjoin upon him religious observances.
   For he who tells him the law and he who enjoins upon him (religious)  observances, he indeed together with that (Shudra) sinks into the darkness of the hell called Asamvrita.[f74]
One should never recite (the Vedas) indistinctly or in the presence of a Shudra; nor having recited the Veda at the end of the night, (though) fatigued may one sleep again. "[f75]
This is what the Manu Smriti says :
"A Brahmin may take possession of the goods of a Shudra with perfect peace of mind, for, since nothing at all belongs to this Shudra as his own, he is one whose property may be taken away by his master.[f76]
Indeed, an accumulation of wealth should not be made by a Shudra even if he is able to do so, for the sight of mere possession of wealth by a Shudra injures the Brahmin.'"[f77]
Here is the advice of the Manu Smriti to the king :
"He who can claim to be a Brahmin merely on account of his birth, or he who only calls himself a Brahmin, may be, if desired, the declarer of law for the king, but a Shudra never.
If a king looks on while a Shudra gives a judicial decision, his realm sinks into misfortune, like a cow in a quagmire.
A realm which consists chiefly of Shudras and is overrun by unbelievers and destitute of twice-born men is soon totally destroyed, oppressed by famine and disease."[f78]
(A)  The Apastamba Dharma Sutra says:
"And those who perform austerities, being intent on fulfilling the sacred laws. And a Shudra who lives by washing the feet (of the Brahmin).
Also blind, dumb, deaf and diseased persons (as long as their infirmities last) are exempt from taxes.[f79]
To serve the other three castes is ordained for the Shudra. The higher the caste which he serves the greater is the merit. " [f80](B) The Manu Smriti has the following:
"Now, for the sake of preserving all this creation, the most glorious (being) ordained separate duties for those who sprang from (his) mouth, arm, thigh and feet.
For Brahmins he ordered teaching, study, sacrifices and sacrificing (as priests) for others, also giving and receiving gifts.
Defence of the people, giving (alms), sacrifice, also study, and absence of attachment to objects of sense, in short for a Kshatriya.
Tending of cattle, giving (alms), sacrifice, study, trade, usury, and also agriculture for a Vaishya.
One duty the Lord assigned to a Shudra—service to those (before-mentioned) classes without grudging."[f81]
(A) The Apastamba Dharma Sutra says :
"A man of one of the first three castes (who commits adultery) with a woman of the Shudra caste shall be banished.
A Shudra (who commits adultery) with a woman of one of the first three castes shall suffer capital, punishment[f82]
(B) The Gautama Dharma Sutra says:
If (the Shudra) has criminal intercourse with an Aryan woman, his organ shall be cut off and all his property be confiscated.
If (the woman had) a protector (i.e., she was under the guardian-ship of some person) he (the Shudra) shall be executed after having undergone the punishments prescribed above. [f83]
(C) The Manu Smriti says:
If a man (of the Shudra caste) makes love to a girl of the highest caste he deserves corporal punishment.[f84]
A Shudra cohabiting with a woman of twice-born castes, whether she be guarded or not guarded, is (to be) deprived of his member and of all his property if she be not guarded and of everything if she is guarded.[f85]
For twice-born men, at first, a woman of the same caste is approved for marrying; but of those who act from lust, those of lower caste may in order (be wives).
A Shudra woman alone (is) a wife for a Shudra; both she and a woman of his own caste (are) legally (wives) of a Vaishya; they two and also a woman of his own caste (are wives) of a Kshatriya, both they and a woman of his own caste (are wives) of a Brahmin.
A Shudra wife is not indicated in any history for a Brahmin and Kshatriya, even though they be in distress.
Twice-born men marrying a (Shudra) woman out of infatuation will surely bring quickly (their) families and descendants to the condition of Shudras.[f86]
A Brahmin having taken a Shudra woman to his bed goes the lower course; having begotten on her a son, he is surely deprived of his Brahminhood.
Now of (a man) whose offerings towards gods, manes, and guests depend on her, the manes and gods eat not that offering nor does he go to heaven.
An expiation is not prescribed for him who has drunk the moisture on a Shudra woman's lips, who has been reached by her breath, and who has also begotten a son on her.[f87]
(A) The Vasishtha Dharma Sutra says :
"One may know that bearing grudges, envy, speaking untruths, speaking evil of Brahmins, backbiting and cruelty are the characteristics of a Shudra."[f88]
(B)  The Vishnu Smriti prescribes that :
(The name to be chosen should be) auspicious in the case of a Brahmin. Indicating power in the case of a Kshatriya. Indicating wealth in the case of a Vaishya. And indicating contempt in the case of a Shudra.[f89]
(C)  The Gautama Dharma Sutra says :
"The Shudra belongs to the fourth caste, which has one birth (only).
And serves the higher (castes). From them he shall seek to obtain his livelihood. He shall use their cast-off shoes. And eat the remnants of their food.
A Shudra who intentionally reviles twice-born men by Criminal abuse, or criminally assaults them with blows, shall be deprived of the limb with which he offends.
If he assumes a position equal to that of twice-born men in sitting, in lying down, in conversation or on the road, he shall undergo (corporal punishment)"[f90]
(D) The Manu Smrid follows suit and says :
"But if a Brahmin through avarice, and because he possesses the power, compel twice-born men, who have received the initiation (into the caste order), to do the work of a slave when they do not wish it, he shall be fined six hundred panas by the king.
But a Shudra, whether bought or not bought (by the Brahmin) may be compelled to practise servitude, for that Shudra was created by the self-existent merely for the service of the Brahmin.
Even if freed by his master, the Shudra is not released from servitude; for this (servitude) is innate in him; who then can take it from him.[f91]
Just in proportion as one pursues without complaining the mode of life (practised) by the good, so free from blame, he gains both this and the other world.[f92]
Now the supreme duty of a Shudra and that which ensures his bliss is merely obedience toward celebrated priests who understand the Veda and live as householders.
If he be pure, obedient to the higher (castes), mild in speech, without conceit, and always submissive to the Brahmin, he attains (in the next transmigration) a high birth.[f93]
Now a Shudra desiring some means of subsistence may serve a Kshatriya, so (is the rule); or the Shudra (if) anxious to support life, (may do so by) serving a wealthy Vaishya.
But he should serve the Brahmins for the sake of heaven, or for the sake of both (heaven and livelihood); for by him (for whom) the word Brahmin (is always) uttered is thus attained the state of completing all he ought to do.
Merely to serve the Brahmins is declared to be the most excellent occupation of a Shudra; for if he does anything other than this it profits him nothing.
His means of life should be arranged by those Brahmins out of their own household (goods) in accordance with what is fitting after examining his ability, cleverness, and (the amount) the dependants embrace.
The leaving of food should be given (to him) and the old clothes, so too the blighted part of the grain, so too the old furniture.[f94]
Let a Brahmin's name be auspicious, a Kshatriya's full of power, let a Vaishya's mean wealth, a Shudra's however be contemptible.
Let a Brahmin's (distinctive title) imply prosperity, a Kshatriya's safeguard, a Vaishya's wealth, a Shudra's service.[f95]
If (a man) of one birth assault one of the twice-born castes with virulent words, he ought to have his tongue cut, for he is of the lowest origin.
If he makes mention in an insulting manner of their name and caste, a red-hot iron rod, ten fingers long, should be thrust into his mouth.
If this man through insolence gives instruction to the priests in regard to their duty, the king should cause boiling hot oil to be poured into his mouth and ear.[f96]
If a man of the lowest birth should with any member injure one of the highest station, even that member of this man shall be cut (off); this is an ordinance of Manu.
If he lift up his hand or his staff (against him), he ought to have his hand cut off; and if he smites him with his feet in anger, he ought to have his feet cut off.
If a low-born man endeavours to sit down by the side of a high-born man, he should be banished after being branded on the hip, or (the king) may cause his backside to be cut off.
If through insolence he spit upon him, the king should cause his two lips to be cut off; and if he makes water upon him, his penis, and if he breaks wind upon him, his anus.
If he seize him by the locks, let the king without hesitation cause both his hands to be cut off, (also if he seize him) by the feet, the beard, the neck or the testicles.
A man who tears (another's) skin and one who causes blood to be seen ought to be fined five hundred (Panas), if he tears the flesh (he should be fined) six niskas, but if he breaks a bone he should be banished.[f97]
(D) The Narada Smriti says:
Men of the Shudra caste, who prefer a false accusation against a member of a twice-born Aryan caste, shall have their tongue split by the officers of the king, and he shall cause them to be put on stakes.
A once-born man (or Shudra) who insults members of a twice-born caste with gross invectives, shall have his tongue cut off; for he is of low origin.
If he refers to their name or caste in terms indicating contempt, an iron-rod, ten angulas long, shall be thrust red-hot into his mouth.
If he is insolent enough to give lessons regarding their duty to Brahmins, the king shall order hot oil to be poured into his mouth and ears.
With whatever limb a man of low caste offends against a Brahmin, that very limb of him shall be cut off, such shall be the atonement for his crime.
A low-born man, who tries to place himself on the same seat with his superior in caste, shall be branded on his hip and banished, or (the king) shall cause his backside to be gashed.
If through arrogance he spits on a superior, the king shall cause both his lips to be cut off; if he makes water on him, the penis; if he breaks wind against him, the buttocks."[f98]


Such were the laws made against the Shudras by the Brahmanic lawgivers. The gist of them may be summarised under the following heads:
(1)  That the Shudra was to take the last place in the social order.
(2)  That the Shudra was impure and therefore no sacred act should be done within his sight and within his hearing.
(3)  That the Shudra is not to be respected in the same way as the other classes.
(4)  That the life of a Shudra is of no value and anybody may kill him without having to pay compensation and if at all of small value as compared with that of the Brahmana, Kshatriya and Vaishya.
(5)  That the Shudra must not acquire knowledge and it is a sin and a crime to give him education.
(6)  That a Shudra must not acquire property. A Brahmin can take his property at his pleasure.
(7)  That a Shudra cannot hold office under the State.
(8)  That the duty and salvation of the Shudra lies in his serving the higher classes.
(9)  That the higher Classes must not inter-marry with the Shudra. They can however keep a Shudra woman as a concubine But if the Shudra touches a woman of the higher classes he will be liable to dire punishment.
(10) That the Shudra is born in servility and must be kept in servility for ever.
Anyone who reads this summary will be struck by two considerations. He will be struck by the consideration that Shudra alone has been selected by the Brahmanic law-givers as a victim for their law-making authority. The wonder must be all the greater when it is recalled that in the ancient Brahmanic literature the oppressed class in the ancient Indo-Aryan society was the Vaishya and not the Shudra. In this connection a reference may be made to the Aitareya Brahmana. The Aitareya Brahmana in telling the story of King Vishvantara and the ShyapamaBrahmanas refers to the sacrificial drink to which the different classes are entitled. In the course of the story, it speaks of the Vaishya in the following terms :
"Next, if (the priest brings) curds, that is the Vaishya's draught with it thou shall satisfy the Vaishyas. One like a Vaishya shall be born in thy line, one who is tributary to another, who is to be used- (lit eaten) by another, and who may be oppressed at will.[f99]
The question is: why was the Vaishya let off and why the fury directed towards the Shudras ?
He will also be struck by the close connection of the disabilities of the Shudra with the privileges of the Brahmin. The Shudra is below theTraivarnikas and is contrasted with the Traivarnikas. That being so, one would expect all the Traivarnikas to have the same rights against theShudras. But what are the facts? The facts are that the Kshatriyas and Vaishyas have no rights worth speaking of against the Shudras. The only Traivarnika who has special rights and privileges is the Brahmin. For instance, if the Shudra is guilty of an offence against the Brahmin, the Brahmin has the privilege of demanding a higher punishment than what a Kshatriya or a Vaishya could. A Brahmin could take the property of the Shudra without being guilty of an offence if he needed it for the purpose of performing a sacrifice. A Shudra should not accumulate property because he thereby hurts the Brahmin. A Brahmin should not live in a country where the king is a Shudra. Why is this so? Had the Brahmin any cause to regard the Shudra as his special enemy?.
There is one other consideration more important than these. It is, what does the average Brahmin think of these disabilities of the Shudras?That they are extraordinary in their conception and shameful in their nature will be admitted by all. Will the Brahmin admit it? It would not be unnatural if this catalogue of disabilities may not make any impression upon him. In the first place, by long habit and usage his moral sense has become so dulled that he has ceased to bother about the how and why of these disabilities of the Shudras. In the second place, those of them who are conscious of them feel that similar disabilities have been imposed on particular classes in other countries and there is therefore nothing extraordinary nor shameful in the disabilities of the Shudras. It is the second attitude that needs to be exposed.
This attitude is a very facile one and is cherished bacause it helps to save reputation and slave conscience. It is, however, no use leaving things as they are. It is absolutely essential to show that these disabilities have no parallel anywhere in the world. It is impossible to compare the Brahmanic. Law with every other legal system on the point of rights and disabilities. A comparison of the Brahmanic Law with the Roman Law ought to suffice.
It will be well to begin this comparison by noting the classes which under the Roman Law had rights and those which suffered from disabilities. The Roman jurists divided men into five categories: (1) Patricians and Plebians; (2) Freemen and Slaves; (3) Citizens and Foreigners; (4) Persons who were sui juris and persons who were alieni juris and (5) Chirstians and Pagans.
Under the Roman Law; persons who were privileged were: (1) Patricians; (2) Freeman; (3) Citizens; (4) Sui juris and (5) Christians. As compared to these, persons who suffered disabilities under the Roman Law were: (1) the Plebians; (2) Slaves; (3) Foreigners; (4) Persons who were alieni juris and (5) Pagans.
A Freeman, who was a citizen under the Roman Law, possessed civil rights as well as political rights. The civil rights of a citizen comprised rights of connubium and commercium. In virtue of the connubium, the citizen could contract a valid marriage according to the jus civile, and acquire the rights resulting from it, and particularly the paternal power and the civil relationship called agnation, which was absolutely necessary to enable him in law to succeed to the property of persons who died intestate. In virtue of the commercium he could acquire and dispose of property of all kinds, according to the forms and with the peculiar privileges of the Roman Law. The political rights of the Roman citizen includedjus suffragii and jus honorum, the right to vote in public elections and the right to hold office.
The slave differed from the Freeman in as much as he was owned by the master and as such had no capacity to acquire rights.
Foreigners, who were called Peregrine, were not citizens and had none of the political or civil rights which went with citizenship. A Foreigner could obtain no protection unless he was under the protection of a citizen.
The alieni juris differed from sui juris in as much as the former were subject to the authority of another person, while the latter were free from it. This authority was variously called (1) Potestas, (2) Manus and (3) Mancipium, though they had the same effect.  Potestas under the Roman Law fell into two classes. Persons subject to Potestas  were (1) slaves, (2) children, (3) wife in Manus, (4) debtor assigned to the creditor by the Court and (5) a hired gladiator. Potestas gave to one in whom it was vested rights to exclusive possession of those to whom it extended and to vindicate any wrong done to them by anyone else.
The correlative disabilities which persons alieni juris suffered as a result of being subject to Potestas were: (1) they were not free, (2) they could not acquire property and (3) they could not directly vindicate any wrong or injury done to them.
The disabilities of the Pagans began with the advent of Christianity. Originally, when all the Romans followed the same Pagan worship, religion could occasion no difference in the enjoyment of civil rights. Under the Christian Emperors, heretics and apostates as well as Pagans and Jews, were subjected to vexatious restrictions, particulary as regards their capacity to succeed to property and to act as witnesses. Only orthodox Christians who recognised the decisions of the four oecumenical councils had the full enjoyment of civil rights.
This survey of rights and disabilities of the Roman Law may well give comfort to Hindus that the Brahmanic Law was not the only law which was guilty of putting certain classes under disabilities, although the disabilities imposed by the Roman Law have nothing of the cruelty which characterises the disabilities imposed by the Brahmanic Law. But when one compares the principles of the Roman Law with those of theBrahmanic Law underlying these disabilities, the baseness of the Brahmanic Law becomes apparent.
Let us first ask: What was the basis of rights and disabilities under the Roman Law. Even a superficial student of Roman Law knows that they were based upon (1) Caput and (2) Existimatio.
Caput meant the civil status of a person. Civil status among the Romans had reference chiefly to three things; liberty, citizenship and family. The status libertatis consisted of being a freeman and not a slave. If a freeman was also a Roman citizen, he enjoyed the status civitatis. Upon this quality depended not only the enjoyment of political rights, but the capacity of participating in the jus civile. Finally, the status familiceconsisted in a citizen belonging to a particular family, and being capable of enjoying certain rights in which the members of that family, in their quality of agnates, could alone take part.
If an existing status came to be lost or changed, the person suffered what was called a capitis diminutio, which extinguished either entirely or to some extent his former legal capacity. There were three changes of state or condition attended with different consequences, called maxima, media, and minima. The greatest involves the loss of liberty, citizenship, and family; and this happened when a Roman citizen was taken prisoner in war, or condemned to slavery for his crimes. But a citizen who was captured by the enemy, on returning from captivity, was restored to all his civil rights jure postliminii.
The next change of status consisted of the loss of citizenship and family rights, without any forfeiture of personal liberty; and this occurred when a citizen became a member of another state. He was then forbidden the use of fire and water, so as to be forced to quit the Roman territory, or was sentenced to deportation under the empire.
Finally, when a person ceased to belong to a particular family, without losing his liberty or citizenship, he was said to suffer the least change of state, as for instance, where one sui juris came under the power of another by arrogation, or a son who had been under the patria potestas was legally emancipated by his father.
Citizenship was acquired first by birth. In a lawful marriage the child followed the condition of the father, and became a citizen, if the father was so at the time of conception. If the child was not the issue of justoe nuptioe, it followed the condition of the mother at the time of its birth. Secondly, by manumission, according to the formalities prescribed by law, the slave of a Roman citizen became a citizen. This rule was modified by the laws. AElia Sentia and Junia Norbana, according to which, in certain cases, the freedman acquired only the status of a foreigner,peregrinus dedititius or of a Latin, Latinus Junianus, Justinian restored the ancient principle, according to which every slave, regularly enfranchised, became in full right a Roman citizen. Thirdly, the right of citizenship was often granted as a favour, either to a whole community or to an individual, by the people or the senate during the republic, and by the reigning prince during the empire; and this was equivalent to what the moderns call naturalisation.
Citizenship was lost—Firstly, by the loss of liberty—as, for instance, when a Roman became a prisoner of war, secondly, by renouncing the character of Roman citizen, which took place when anyone was admitted a citizen of another state; thirdly, by a sentence of deportation or exile, as a punishment for crime.
The civil status of a person under the Roman Law may or may not be civis optino jure. Civis optima jure included not only capacity for civil rights but also capacity for political rights such as jus suffragii et honorwn, i.e., the right to vote and the capacity to hold a public office. Capacity for political rights depended upon existimatio. Existimatio means reputation in the eye of the law. A Roman citizen may have caput as well asexistimatio. On the other hand, a Roman may have caput but may not have existimatio. Whoever had caput as well as existimatio  had civil rights as well as political  rights. Whoever had caput but had no existimatio could claim civil rights only. He could not claim political rights.
A person's existimatio was lost in two ways. It was lost by loss of freedom or by conviction for an offence. If a person lost his freedom hisexistimatio was completely extinguished. Loss of existimatio by conviction for offence varied according to the gravity of the offence.[f100] If the offence was serious the diminution of his existimatio was called infamia. If the offence was less grave it was called turpitudo, Infamia resulted in the existinguishment of existimatio . Under the Roman Law a defendant, in addition to ordinary damages, was subjected to infamia.Condemnation for theft, robbery, injuria or fraud, entailed infamy. So a partner, a mandatarius, a depositarins, tutor, a mortgagee (in contractusfidudoe) if condemned for wilful breach of duty, was held to be infamous.
The consequence of infamia was exclusion from political rights, [f101]not merely from office (honours), but even from the right to vote in elections (suffragium).
From this brief survey of the basis of rights and disabilities in Roman Law, it will be clear that the basis was the same for all. They did not differ from community to community. Rights and disabilities according to Roman Law were regulated by general considerations, such as caput andexistimatio. Whoever had caput and existimatio had rights. Whoever lost his caput and his existimatio suffered disabilities. What is the position under the Brahmanic Law? There again, it is quite clear that rights and disabilities were not based on general uniform considerations. They were based on communal considerations. All rights for the first three Varnas and all disabilities for the Shudras was the principle on which theBrahmanic Law was based.
The protagonists of Brahmanic Laws may urge that this comparison is too favourable to Roman Law and that the statement that Roman Law did not distribute rights and liabilities on communal basis is not true. This may be conceded. For so far as the relation between the Patricians and Plebians was concerned the distribution of rights and liabilities was communal. But in this connection the following facts must be noted.
In the first place, it must be noted that Plebians were not slaves. They were freemen in as much as they enjoyed jus commercii or the right to acquire, hold and transfer property. Their disabilities consisted in the denial of political and social rights. In the second place, it must be noted that their disabilities were not permanent. There were two social disabilities from which they suffered. One arose from the interdict on intermarriage between them and the Patricians imposed by the Twelve Tables. [f102]This disability was removed in B.C. 445 by the passing of the Canulenian Law which legalized intermarriage between Particians and Plebians. The other disability was their ineligibility to hold the office of Pontiffs and Augurs in the Public Temples of Rome. This disability was removed by the Ogulnian Law passed in B.C. 300.
As to the political disabilities of the Plebians they had secured the right to vote in popular assemblies (jus suffragii) under the Constitution ofServius Tullius the Sixth King of Rome. The political disabilities which had remained unredressed were those which related to the holding of office. This too was removed in course of time after the Republic was established in B.C. 509. The first step taken in this direction was the appointment of Plebian Tribunes in B.C. 494; the Questorship was opened to them, formally in B.C. 421; actually in B.C. 409; the Consulship in B.C. 367; the curule-aedileship in B.C. 366; the dictatorship in B.C. 356; the Censorship in B.C 351; and the Praetorshipin B.C. 336. TheHortensian Law enacted in B.C. 287 marked a complete triumph for the Plebians. By that laws the resolutions of the Assembly of the tribes were to be directly and without modification, control or delay, binding upon the whole of the Roman people.
This marks a complete political fusion of Patricians and Plebians on terms of equality.
Not only were the Plebians placed on the same footing as to political capacity and social status with the Patricians but the road to nobility was also thrown open to them. In Roman society, birth and fortune were the two great sources of rank and personal distinction. But in addition to this, the office of Curule Magistracy was also a source of ennoblement to the holder thereof. Every citizen, whether Patrician or Plebian, who won his way to a Curule Magistracy, from that AEdile upwards, acquired personal distinction, which was transmitted to his descendants, who formed a class called Nobiles, or men known, to distinguish them from the ignobiles, or people who were not known. As the office was thrown open to thePlebians, many Plebians[f103] had become nobles and had even surpassed the Patricians in point of nobility.
It may be that the Roman Law did recognise communal distinction in distributing rights and disabilities. The point is that the disabilities of the Plebians were not regarded as permanent. Although they existed they were in course of time removed. That being so, the protagonists ofBrahmanic Law cannot merely take solace in having found a parallel in the Roman Law but have to answer why the Brahmanic Law did not abolish the distinction between the Traivarnikas and the Shudras as the Roman Law did by equating the Plebians with the Patricians? One can therefore contend that the Roman Law of rights and disabilities was not communal while the Brahmanic Law was.
This is not the only difference between the Roman Law and the Brahmanic Law. There are two others. One is equality before law in criminal matters. The Roman Law may not have recognised equality in matters of civil and political rights. But in matters of criminal law it made no distinction between one citizen and another, not even between Patrician and Plebian. The same offence the same punishment, no matter who the complainant and who the accused was. Once an offence was proved, the punishment was the same. What do the Dharma Sutras and theSmritis do? They follow an entirely different principle. For the same offence the punishment varies according to the community of the accused and the community of the complainant. If the complainant is a Shudra and the accused belonged to any one of the three classes the punishment is less than what it would be if the relations were reversed. On the other hand, if the complainant was Traivarnika and the accused a Shudra, the punishment is far heavier than in the first case. This is another barbarity which distinguishes the Brahmanic Law from the Roman Law.
The next feature of the Roman Law which distinguishes it from the Brahmanic Law is most noteworthy. It relates to the extinction of disabilities. Two points need be borne in mind. First is that the disabilities under the Roman Law were only contingent. So long as certain conditions lasted, they gave rise to certain disabilities. The moment the conditions changed, the disabilities vanished and a step in the direction of equality before law was taken. The second point i is that the Roman Law never attempted to fix the conditions for ever and thereby perpetuate the disabilities. On the other hand, it was always ready to remove the conditions to which these disabilities were attached as is evident in the case of thePlebians, the Slaves, the Foreigners and the Pagans.
If these two points about the disabilities under the Roman Law are borne in mind, one can at once see what mischief the Dharma Sutras and the Smritis have done in imposing the disabilities upon the Shudras. The imposition of disabilities would not have been so atrocious if the disabilities were dependent upon conditions and if the disabled had the freedom to outgrow those conditions. But what the Brahmanic Law does is not merely to impose disabilities but it tries to fix the conditions by making an act which amounts to a breach of those conditions to be a crime involving dire punishment. Thus, the Brahmanic Law not only seeks to impose disabilities but it endeavours to make them permanent. One illustration will suffice. A Shudra is not entitled to perform Vedic sacrifices as he is not able to repeat the Vedic Mantras. Nobody would quarrel with such a disability. But the Dharma Sutras do not stop here. They go further and say that it will be a crime for a Shudra to study the Vedas or hear it being pronounced and if he does commit such a crime his tongue should be cut or molten lead should be poured into his ear. Can anything be more barbarous than preventing a man to grow out of his disability? What is the explanation of these disabilities? Why did the Brahmanic Law-givers take such a cruel attitude towards the Shudras? The Brahmanic Law books merely state the disabilities. They say that the Shudras have no right to Upanayana. They say that the Shudras shall hold no office. They say that the Shudras shall not have property. But they do not say why. The whole thing is arbitrary. The disabilities of the Shudra have no relation to his personal conduct. It is not the result of infamy. The Shudra is punished just because he was a Shudra. This is a mystery which requires to be solved. As the Brahmanic Law books do not help us to solve it, it is necessary to look for explanation elsewhere.
Contents                                                                          Continued…

 [f1]Muir's, Original Sanskrit Texts, VoL I, P. 9.
 [f2]2 Encyclopadia of Religion and Ethics, Vol. IV, p. 145
 [f3]1 Presna 1. Patala I, Khanda I, Sutras 4-5.      
 [f4]2 Prasna I, Patala I, Khanda I, Sutra 6
 [f5]3 Chapter II, Verses 1-4.                         
 [f6].       4 Manu, Chapter I, Verse 31.
 [f7]Ibid.. Chapter X, Verse 4
 [f8]Ibid.. Chapter II, Verse 6.
 [f9]1 Geiger : Civilization of the Eastern Iranians in Ancient Times, Vol. II, P.64
 [f10]1 Wilson's. Rig Veda. Vol. VI, p. 129
 [f11]1 Muir. Vol. 1. p. 180
 [f12]2 Muir. lbid.. Vol. I, p. 162
 [f13]Ibid.. p. 163.
 [f14]Muir. Vol. 1. p. 163.
 [f15]Ibid.. p. 163.
 [f16]Ibid.. p. 165.
 [f17]Ibid., p. 165.
 [f18]Ibid.. p. 165
 [f19]Quoted by Muir, Vol. I, p. 108
 [f20]Quoted by Muir, Vol. I pp. 105-107
 [f21]Quoted by Muir, Vol. 1. p. 110-112
 [f22]There is however a great deal of confusion when one comes to details. The Vishnu Purana says that Brahma divided his person into two parts: with the one half he became a male, with the other half a female. The female was called Satarupa who by incessantly practising austere fervour of a highly arduous description acquired for herself as a husband a Male called Manu Svayambhuva. There is no suggestion in the Vishnu Purana of incest by Brahma with his daughter. The Aitareya Brahmana and the Matsya Purana on the other hand speak of Brahma having begotten Manu by committing incest with his daughter Satarupa; the Matsya Purana adds that Manu by his austerity obtained a beautiful wife namedAnanta. According to the Ramayana (see Muir, I, p. 117) Manu was not a male but a female and was a daughter of Daksha Prajapali and the wife of Kasyapa.
 [f23]Matsya Purana- Muir, Vol., I p. Ill f.n.
 [f24]1 Muir, Vol. I, p. 177.
 [f25]Ibid., Vol. I, p. 178.
 [f26]Ibid., Vol. I, p. 178.
 [f27]Ibid., Vol. I, p. 180.
 [f28]I Muir, 1. p. 179
 [f29]1 Muir, Vol. 11. p,5
 [f30]2 Ibid., p. 11.
 [f31]1 Muir, Vol. III,  p. 13.
 [f32]2 Muir, Vol. I, pp. 154-155
 [f33]1Muir,Vol. l,p.l8.
 [f34]2Muir,Vol. l,p.22.
 [f35]1 Muir, Vol. I, p. 16
 [f36]2 Muir, Vol. I, p. 21                  
 [f37]3 Moir, VoL 1. p. 22
 [f38]4 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 22
 [f39]5 Muir, Vol. 1. p. 20
 [f40]1 Muir, Vol. I, p. 21
 [f41]2 Muir, Vol. I, p. 21
 [f42]1 Max Muller, Ancient Sanskrit Literature (Panini office edition), p. 200
 [f43]1 Prasna I, Patala I, Khanda I, Sutras 4-5.
 [f44]2 Ibid., Sutra 6
 [f45]3 Chapter II, Verses 1-4.
 [f46]4 Chapter IV, Verse 3.
 [f47]1 Chapter I, Verse 31
 [f48]2 Chapter X, Verse 4
 [f49]3 Prasna 1, Patala 3, Khanda 9, Sulias 6-11.
 [f50]4 Prasna I, Patala 5, Khanda 16, Sutras 21-22.
 [f51]5 Chapter XIX, Sutras 1-4
 [f52]1 Chapter XIV, Verses 1-4
 [f53]2 Chapter XVIII, Verses 11-15
 [f54]3 Chapter VI, Verses 26.
 [f55]4 Chapter VI, Verses 27-29
 [f56]5 Chapter IV, Verse 61.
 [f57]6 Chapter III, Verse 178
 [f58]1 Prasna 1, Patala 2, Khanda 5, Sutra 16.
 [f59]Ibid, Sutra 17
 [f60]3 Prasna II, Patala 2, Khanda 4, Sutras 19-20
 [f61]4 Chapter V. Sutra 115
 [f62]5 Chapter II, Verses 135-137
 [f63]1 Chapter II, Verses 154-156
 [f64]2 Chapter III. Verses 110-112
 [f65]3 Prasna I, Palala 9, Khanda 24. Sutras 1-3.
 [f66]1 Chapter XII, Sutras 8-13
 [f67]2 Chapter XX, Verses 7-11.
 [f68]3 Chapter VIII, Verses 267-268
 [f69]1 Chapter XI, Verses 127-131

 [f70]2 Chapter V, Sutras 19-25

 [f71]3 Chapter XII, Verse 12.
 [f72]4 Chapter XX, Sutras 4-6.
 [f73]5 Chapter III, Verse 156.
 [f74]1 Chapter IV, Verses 78-81
 [f75]2 Chapter IV, Verse 99.            
 [f76]3 Chapter VIII, Verse 417
 [f77]4 Chapter X, Verse 129
 [f78]5 Chapter VIII, Verses 20-22.
 [f79]1 Prasna II, Patala 10, Khanda 26, Sutras 14-16
 [f80]2 Prasna I, Patala I, Khanda I, Sutras 7-8
 [f81]3 Chapter I, Verses 87-91.                      
 [f82]4 Prasna II, Patala 10, Khanda 27, Sutras 8-9
 [f83].    5 Chapter XII, Sutras 2-3.
 [f84]6 Chapter VIII, Verse 366.
 [f85]7 Chapter VIII, Verse 374.
 [f86]1 Chapter III, Verses 12-15
 [f87]lbid. Verses 17-19.
 [f88]3 Chapter VI, Verse 24.
 [f89]4 Chapter XXVII, Sutras 6-9.
 [f90]1 Chapter X. Sutras 50, 56-59 and Chapter XII, Sutras 1,7.
 [f91]2 Chapter VIII, Verses 412-414.
 [f92]3 Chapter X. Verse 128.
 [f93]4 Chapter IX, Verses 334-335
 [f94]1 Chapter X. Verses 121-125
 [f95]2 Chapter II, Verses 31-32.
 [f96]3 Chapter VIII, Verses 270-72.
 [f97]1 Chapter VIII. Verses 279-284.
 [f98]2 Chapter XV, Verses 22-27.
 [f99]1 Muir. Vol. I, p. 436-40. 42 Chapter XII, sutres 2-3
 [f100]Such as robbery, theft, perjury, fraud, appearing on the public stage as an actor or gladiator, ignominious expulsion from the army, gaining a living by aiding in prostitution and other disreputable occupations and other variety of acts involving gross moral turpitude.
 [f101]There were other consequences of infamia such as exclusion from the office of attorney, disability to act on behalf of another in a law suit or giving evidence. Infamia was inflicted in two ways, either by the censors or by the judgement of a Court of Law. It was in the power of the censors, in superintending public morality, to deprive senators of their dignity, to remove knights from the equestrian order and even to strip a citizen of all his political rights by classing him among the aerarii. The censors also put a nota censoriaopposite to a man's name in the roll of citizens; and this might be done upon their own responsibility; without special inquiry, though they generally acted in accordance with public opinion. The nota censoria produced no effect except during the magistracy of the censor who imposed it. In this respect it differed essentially from infamy, which was perpetual, unless the stigma was removed by the prerogative of the people or the Emperor.
 [f102]1 It was older than the Twelve Tables. The Twelve Tables only recognized it
 [f103]1 A Plebian who first attained a Curule office and became the founder of a noble family was called by the Romans a novus homo or new man.


PART I Continued…
chapter IV
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 possess—by no means inconsiderable—is 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 head—by 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 down—this 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.
1. Teutonic
2. Alpine (Celtic)
3. Mediterranean
or black
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 theScience 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 Veda—one 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 premise—namely, 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 highway—the Pass of Darriel—across 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 cradle—it is rather a grave—of 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 regions—characteristics 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;
vii. 83.1;
viii 51.9;
  x 102.3.
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 :

"We live in the midst of the Dasyu tribes, who do not perform sacrifices, nor believe in anything. They have their own rites and are not entitled to be called men. 0! thou, destroyer of enemies, annihilate them and injure the Dasas."

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 Vedaof 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 asan-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 ofMridhravak. 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."
3.     Rig Veda, i. 151.8—"Oh, Indra, find out who is an Arya and who is a Dasyu and separate them."
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 Dasas—one 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 Varnameans 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 andRushati 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 asShyama 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 Veda—X.31.11—he 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:
1) i.l04.2;
2) i. 179.6;
3) ii.l2.4;
4) iii.34.5;
5) ix.71.2.
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 Suktabelongs 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 Ahunavaiti—Yasna 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- thahyameaning 'of discriminating, of selecting of determining'.
It occurs in Gatha Ahunavati—Yasna 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 Ushtavaid—Yasna 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 mentalities—the good mentality and the evil mentality—are 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 wordThaeshai 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 wordTkaesha 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 declaresYa 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 Varena—faith, 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 ofZarathushtra 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.
(4)  The Vedas do not support the contention that the Aryas were different in colour from the Dasas and Dasyus.
chapter V
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 Agni—these 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.8.1.1—In 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, supernaturalChaturvarnya 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 Brahmanicliterature 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 territory—marks 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 extremebrunetness 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.
IT has been shown how untenable the Western theory is. The only part of the theory that remains to be considered is : who are the Shudras? Mr. A. C. Das*[f41] says :
"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?
Contents                                                                              Part II

 [f1]I Ripley W. E., The Races of Europe, p. 400.
 [f2]1 Ripley, Races of Europe, p. 121.
 [f3]lbid Vol. 1. p. 121
 [f4]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]See Yajur Veda with Madhavachrya's Bhashya
 [f12]2 Life in Ancient India in the Age of the Mantras, pp. 11-12.
 [f13]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]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]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]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.