I could not help wondering that every time a ritual or a custom or a tradition was discussed, some one HAD to raise a point about caste discrimination, casteless society, inter-caste marriages etc... I suppose it is the display of the 'erudite'... the 'in thing' today.
i have been witnesses in my early age in north malabar to the worst indignities heaped on dalits. only that i did not know it was humiliations.
i was closer to past 50 before i fully understood the implied indgnites and horrors. i have also found, that preserving a 'noble silence' is one of not having to deal with the unsavoury past.
as a parent, do not wish to hide under the cloak of ignorance.
i feel i owe it to myself and my progeny, to tell them, as it was, and take my share of the blame, so that in turn, they, because of the knowledge, will be blameless.
caste is an integral part of today's hinduism.
personally, i believe, the obsoletion of caste will result, from grass roots practice ie at the bottom. through intercaste marriages mostly.
the older generations appear to cling on to it, as how else can i explain that over 99% of the matrimonial ads insist on same caste/subcaste/gothram/etc etc..
On Manu - Some prefer to say that the glass is half empty, and some others would say, half full. It is but a matter of perspective, isn't ite on this.
very soon, in all probability, casteism as it was/is inflicted on dalits, would be heard in the united nations court of justice, as a 'crime against humanity'.
manu's written laws and prescriptions are very clear in how and what the various castes are to be treated. i think every statement such as '“If the shudra intentionally listens for committing to memory the Veda, then his ears should be filled with (molten) lead ...
' written by manu, and practised as law by the peshwas as late as 3 - 4 centuries ago, will have a world audience, and i wonder what type of logic to justify this will be presented.. believe me, there are tons of manu's laws which deal not only with dalits but also females and other shudras.
there are still germans whom i meet, believe that there was goodness in hitler. surprisingly, in russia, there is a neo stalinist revival movement.
i do not think in terminologies such as logic, rhetoric, consistency and such stuff. i try to keep it simple - i can recognize evil, i hope when i see it. and ensure i do my little mite to defeat it. my focus on manu is just that.
i am not sure if it will be the lot of the government of india, to go to a world body and justify manu smrithi. no matter who does it, it would be an interesting spectacle to folks like me, who fervently believe that it is in the best interests of the future of the hindu way of life, manu and his smrithis are quickly dumped into the dustbins of history.
what is sad, is that it would take much much longer to cleanse out the evil associated with manu, for the mind of man, while can produce a newton or gandhi, can also produce a hitler, stalin, timur or manu.