Caste is called “Varna” in ancient Indian Sanskrit, which means “color” and “quality”.
Portugal calls it “caste”, which is called “caste” in ancient Chinese Buddhist Scriptures or the works of eminent monks in India.
Its formation is closely related to class differentiation and social division of labor.
The origin of caste system India is one of the ancient civilizations in the world.
As early as the 23rd century BC, it created a splendid haraba culture, which was created by the main primitive inhabitants of India, the darovitea people.
Around 2000 BC, some tribes belonging to the Indo European language family came from the Central Asian plateau to the Punjab area in the middle and upper reaches of the Indus River.
These people are white and call themselves “Aryans”, which means people of noble origin, while the local Aboriginal darapita is called “dasa”, which means “enemy”.
They say that dasa is “without a nose” and “with black skin”, and they think that he is more noble than darovita.
It can be said that this is the earliest caste to distinguish the black and white people in India.
Shortly after entering India, Aryan society began to divide.
Members of a few clans and tribes became aristocrats, while most clans and tribes became civilians.
This is a phenomenon that all nationalities in the world coexisted when they entered civilization from primitive times.
But the Aryans are different: their nobles are divided into priestly nobles and warrior nobles.
In this way, there were three groups within the Aryan tribe: priests and nobles, samurai nobles and ordinary civilians.
Together with the original “dasa”, four grades or castes were formed.
Among the four classes or castes, the priestly nobility is the highest, called “Brahman”, followed by the warrior nobility, called “sardili”.
The second is ordinary civilians, called “barking house”, and the lowest is dasa, called “sudara”.
The origin of these four levels is explained in the last chapter of India’s oldest document, ligurveda (also a Brahmanic Classic) (formed about 1000 BC or later): it is said that in the ancient flood and famine era, there was nothing but a primitive giant named prusha.
One day, the gods dismembered Prussia, and all parts of Prussia’s body will become all things in heaven and earth.
Among them, “his mouth became a Brahman, his arms became a sartiri, his legs became a Barker, and his feet gave birth to a sudara”.
By the 9th and 7th centuries BC, the Aryans expanded into the Ganges Valley and established some slave countries.
In order to safeguard their class interests, the slave owners and nobles fixed the original four grades with the help of religion and law, and made detailed provisions on their occupation, status, rights, obligations and social life.
The caste system was thus formed.
The occupational division of the caste system is based on the caste system.
As the first level Brahman, he mainly acts as a priest, studies and imparts religious classics, studies and explains the law, “sacrifices for himself and others”, and receives alms or alms to others.
They do not need to engage in any productive labor, nor do they have to bear any taxes and corvee, but they can possess a lot of wealth by accepting handouts.
Their personal integrity is inviolable, and even the king cannot touch them.
They not only monopolized the religious, legal and cultural rights, but also shared the power with the samurai nobles as advisers to the king and participated in the handling of state affairs, with the highest status.
The code of Manu wrote: “the best of all creatures is animals, the best of animals is rational animals, the best of all rational animals is man, and the best of all people is Brahman.
” Chadili mainly acts as a warrior to defend the country, religion and Brahman.
Kings and officials usually belong to the chadili caste.
Although they have political power and military power, they are often bullied by the Brahmans because they are inferior to the Brahmans in rank.
The Brahman openly declared that a 100 year old sartiri should treat a 10-year-old Brahman as respectfully as his son treats his father.
Of course, the powerful chadili is unwilling to let the Brahman dominate his head, so there are often contradictions and conflicts between the two.
The profession of the Barker is engaged in agriculture, animal husbandry and commerce.
They have the obligation to support Brahmans and shatili who are completely separated from productive labor in the form of charity (donation) and tax payment, and cannot enjoy any religious, military and political privileges.
As the lowest of the four castes, sudara could only engage in handicrafts and other occupations considered low at that time.
Many of them became servants or slaves and lived a very miserable life.
In order to ensure the privileged status of higher castes, the caste system stipulates that all occupations of all castes are hereditary, and people of lower castes are particularly prohibited from engaging in occupations of higher castes.
The code of Manu contains such an article: “if a low-level producer earns his living from the occupation of a high caste due to greed, the king shall exile him immediately after depriving him of his property.
” The inequality of caste system is also unequal among various castes in religious life.
According to the code, the first three castes have the right to participate in religious activities, which are called “rebirth clan”, while sudara has no right to participate in any religious activities, which is called “lifetime clan”.
Even if they listen to or look at the Brahmanic Scripture, Veda is also prohibited.
For example, the Dharma Sutra stipulates that if the sudara deliberately listens to people recite the Veda, he must fill his ears with melted tin or wax.
If he reads the original Veda, he should cut off his tongue.
If he remembers the original Veda, he must split his body in half.
There are not only inequalities between sudara and the first three castes, but also differences among the first three castes.
Take the wooden staff carried by the Aryans during the Brahman period as an example.
The Code stipulates that the staff of the Brahman must reach the beginning, the shahri must reach the forehead, and the bark must reach the nose.
In this way, people only need to look at the length of the wooden staff to know the caste of the person.
Inequality among the four castes is also reflected in the law.
If the high caste hurts the people of the low caste, the punishment is generally very light.
On the contrary, if the lower caste hurts the people of the higher caste, it will be severely punished.
For example, the Code stipulates that the Brahman insults the sudra and is only fined 12 Patana, but if the sudra is evilIf the sudara comments on the name and caste of the reborn person in a rude manner, it must insert a hot nail with ten fingers into his mouth.
If the sudra arrogantly teaches a Brahman, pour boiling oil into his mouth and ears.
In terms of marriage, in order to maintain the purity of high castes, the code emphasizes that internal marriage must be implemented among various castes, that is, intermarriage with people of castes.
However, with the growth of mixed population, especially the emergence of cities, mixed blood is inevitable.
Coupled with the insatiable greed of Brahman and sardili men, they often violate the provisions of the internal marriage system and forcibly occupy beautiful women in lower castes as wives.
In this case, in order to ensure that the social status of high-level castes will not be confused due to mixed blood, the code has formulated the so-called principles of “consequent marriage” and “inverse marriage”, that is, men of high-level castes can successively marry women of low-level castes (this is consequent marriage), but men of low-level castes must not marry women of high-level castes (this is inverse marriage).
The code provides for corporal punishment for men of lower castes who propose to women of higher castes.
Therefore, according to the principle of “consequent marriage” and “inverse marriage”, in addition to the women of this caste, Brahmans can also marry the women of sardili, visha and sudara.
In addition to the women of this caste, sadiri can marry the women of visha and sudara, while sudara can only marry the women of this caste.
If someone dares to violate the principles of “consequent marriage” and “inverse marriage”, and men of lower castes marry women of higher castes, they will commit an unforgivable crime, and their sons and daughters will become “Chandra”, which means “untouchables”.
Chandra has the lowest social status and is the most discriminated against.
It is considered as an “untouchable person”.
According to the code, Untouchables can only engage in the dirtiest, least done and most despised occupations such as slaughtering, tanning, cleaning garbage, transporting and discarding corpses, guarding graves or being executioners.
They can only live outside the village, wear dead people’s clothes, eat with abandoned broken bowls and wear iron decorations.
At night, they can’t walk around the village, let alone into the city.
When working during the day, you should wear a mark indicating your identity.
When you go out, you should knock wooden bangs while walking, so that people can hide immediately after hearing the sound, so as not to see or touch them.
Because in the view of higher castes, it is filthy and unlucky to see or encounter Dalits.
With the further development of social division of labor, many small groups engaged in different occupations have multiplied between Barker and sudara.
These small groups, known as “gati”, are influenced by the caste system, have inherited their occupations and implement the intra group marriage system.
There are 59 kinds of gati recorded in the manu code, of which 6 are the most oppressed.
Since then, the number of gatis has become more and more.
By 1931, when the British colonial authorities conducted the first survey and statistics on the Indian population, the number of gatis in India had reached 3500, including 429 oppressed gatis, about 60 million people.
With the increase of gathi, the distinction between the original four castes gradually lost its significance of existence and was finally replaced by gathi.
Extended reading — the similarity of Chinese, Indian and Greek fables.
Some experts believe that many popular fables, fairy tales and short stories in the world come from India, and many famous fables in ancient Greece, such as Aesop’s fables, also come from India.
Is that true? There has been a debate on this issue for a long time.
Some scholars advocate that they come from India, while others advocate that they come from Greece, but few people think that they come from China.
As far as the image of monkey king in journey to the west is concerned, some people think it comes from India, while they advocate that it comes from China’s “wuzhiqi”.
But some people hold a compromise attitude.
Indeed, there are many similarities among the three ancient countries of China, India and Greece.
So where do these fables come from? Cui Hong, a famous historian in the Northern Wei Dynasty of China, once edited a book “spring and Autumn”.
One of them wrote a story before the death of King Bulan Tuyuhun ah Chai: King Bulan Tuyuhun ah Chai was dying.
He called on his children to say: you each give me an arrow and will play underground: Russia ordered his mother and brother Mu Yan to say: you take an arrow and break it, and break it.
Another saying: you take 19 arrows and break them, but you can’t break them after delay.
Chai said: you once knew that a single person is easy to break, while many are difficult to destroy.
Work together, but the country can be consolidated.
Words end in death.
Coincidentally, the story of the farmer’s sons in Aesop’s fables is like this: the farmer’s sons often quarreled with each other.
He persuaded them many times, but he couldn’t persuade them all the time.
He felt that he had to use facts.
So he sent them to get a bunch of sticks.
They came according to the order.
He gave them the whole bunch first.
They broke the whole bunch of sticks, and none of them could break it.
The farmer then untied the bundle and gave each one a stick.
They broke the stick easily.
He said at that time: sons, you see, if you are united, you will not be conquered by the enemy, but if you are divided, you will be defeated.
Compared with the story in the spring and autumn of the Sixteen Kingdoms, this fable is completely the same from conception to expression.
Some people say that Cui Hong adapted the story of Aesop’s fables.
As like as two peas of the book of songs, the sixteen stories of the spring and Autumn period are based on the folklore of our country, and further pointed out that the one hundred and ten volumes of the book of Wei Shu written in the twenty four histories are identical with those recorded by Cui Hong.
Wei Shu was written by Wei Shou of the Northern Qi Dynasty, a little later than Cui Hong.
When commenting on the book of Wei in the synopsis of Si Ku, Ji Yun pointed out that it “tests each other’s books and proves their works, and it is not far away, so it is not.
” in this way, the story of the book of Wei and even Cui Hong does not originate from Aesop’s fables.
The “three precepts” in is a group of fables with three chapters in total.
Among them, one is the donkey of Guizhou, which is very similar to the camel seen for the first time in Aesop’s fables.
Did Liu Zongyuan translate Aesop’s fables, or did Aesop’s Fables absorb the wonderful metaphors of ancient China? It was also pointed out that the similarities of the fables of China, India and Greece must have their mutual transmission factors.
If we carefully explore them from all aspects of data, this mystery can still be solved.
But so far, this is still a mystery in the history of culture.