Photo Courtesy: Gita Press, Gorakhpur
You may know that invaders of India, first Muslims and later British, destroyed and distorted Hindu literature. Muslims destroyed (world famous libraries of India were burnt-down) and distorted Hindu Literature by making changes including ‘unwarranted, misplaced and mischievous’ additions to Hindu Literature. The British destroyed the very Indian education system and replaced it with Macaulay system of education that created servants and slaves of English, which, by the way, has continued even after ‘transfer of power’ from ‘White Saheb’ to ‘Brown Saheb’ aka Independence of India.
Wisemen say, if you want to win and rule a country, first and foremost destroy their native culture, destroy their pride in their history and sow disrespect and distrust for their own national heroes and role models. And the easiest route is destroying and distorting their books and literature. Both, Muslims and British did exactly that. The net outcome, till date many Indians hardly have national pride, national spirit and national patriotism. They are still at the neck of each other due to religion and regionalism. Many are ready to side with anti- India powers for meagre personal gains. How far they can go down, it is sometime difficult to imagine or believe.
A WhatsApp message, I don’t know fake or real, doing rounds say Hong Kong guys hate Indians because it were Indians who sided with Muslims and British to help them rule India and kill many Indians. The message may not be completely real as far as Hong Kong guys go, but the fact is that Muslim and British invaders ruled India and tortured Indians with the help of their Indian stooges.
Coming to Hindus, majority population, many don’t even read their history or at best read distorted history. According to a study, 90- 95% of Hindus in India have not read (self-study) two prime most books of Indian history and culture, namely, Ved Vyasa’s Mahabharat and Valmiki’s Ramayan. India does have a tradition of Katha (lectures by experts and discussion) but self-study is very different. Some would say that reason is Sanskrit, the language of these books and even earlier treasures of knowledge, namely, Vedas, Upanishads and Puranas, being no more the language of daily use by the common man.
But today all those books and literature are available with translation in every language of India and the world. Well, translations may not be as authentic as originals but still those go a long way, for the uninitiated.
In the absence of correct knowledge of history and culture of India or knowledge of distorted history and culture of India, every motivated and vested interest has their own (distorted) story to tell.
‘Manu Smriti on Shudras’ in Sikhiwiki (https://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Manu_Smriti_on_Shudras).
In the absence of any responsibility of the publisher, everyone is a scholar.
But the bankruptcy of scholarship of Sikhiwiki glaringly shows up, when you see that it is a straight reproduction from another source, namely, bhagwanvalmiki.com. BTW: Baghwanvalmiki.com has their own agenda to wrongfully present Valmiki of lower caste.
Who was Bhagwan Valmiki?
Bhagwan is an address of respect in Indian culture, used for divine personalities.
Valmiki was a Maharishi (great author/ scholar) of ancient India that dates back to the period of Ram Chandra, some 10,000 years back.
He is the author of Ramayan, a book of history of Rama period.
Those who are eager to divide India for vote bank politics within India, and outside for their divide and rule politics, would propagate that Valmiki was of lower caste, with an intent to say that India was and is a caste ridden society dominated by Brahmins (highest caste).
In another article, Incredible India- A (Self- proclaimed) Untouchable received Highest Civilian Award (www.kreately.in), I had pointed out that, according to a study, Hindus in India are not so much concerned with high or low caste, they are annoyed and agitated with reservations in education and jobs for distressed classes, namely, Scheduled castes, Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes, in a country where a large majority of population is economically distressed.
Who was Valmiki? It has been stated by Valmiki himself as follows:
प्रचेतसोsहं दशम: पुत्रो (Valmiki Ramayan7/16/18; 5/13/16)
Meaning, I am the 10th son of Prachetas.
Who was Prachetas?
प्रचेतसं वशिषठं च भृगुं नारदमेव च (Manu Smriti 1/35)
Meaning, Prachetas was same class as Vashishta, Brighu, Narad.
Did you notice that it is written in the same Manu Smriti which some politically over-charged criticize and sometime want burn?.
As per Indian culture and history, Vashishta, Bhrighu, Narad were all Brahmans. Brahman is one who remains engaged in thought with such intellectual questions and pursuits like who is the creator of all that we have on the planet Earth and the universe?
Valmiki, as he stated himself, was the 10th son of Prachetas. He was Brahman by birth. In Indian culture four classes of society, namely Brahman (often misspelled as Brahmin) (intellectual class), Kshatriya (warrior class), Vaishya (trading and agriculture class) and Shudra (service class) were by occupation and not by birth, which vested interests would never let go. At a deeper level of understanding the four classes of Hindu society were actually ‘gunn- swabhav- karm’ (mindset- innate nature- occupation) based and not birth. They were never socially hierarchical till Muslims and British made it out to be. Oneness of diversity is the fundamental component of Hindu culture and philosophy. There is no space for social hierarchy. Economic Hierarchy always existed and exists even today in every part of the world. You may know, the so called class-less societies like communist nations have no less economic hierarchies than capitalist societies.
Evidence of Distortion in Valmiki Ramayan
To promote their interests, it is evident that last Chapter, ‘Uttarkand’ has been added post Valmiki by some, obviously anti- Hindu powers/ elements.
Those who have been the readers of Hindu scriptures know that before ending any book, invariably, the authors talk about the benefits of reading (self-study) of that book.
If you take a look at Valmiki Ramayan, it has been done at the end of Yudhkand (Valmiki Ramayan, 7/128/ 112-125) .
Yudhkand is the 6th and the last Chapter of Valmiki Ramayan; 1st Baalkand, 2nd Ayodhyakand, 3rd Aranyakand, 4th Kishkindha kand, 5th Sundarkand.
Kand is like parts (‘khand’ in Sanskrit). And each part has sections (‘Sarg’ in Sanskrit).
Yudhkand, closes, in the tradition of speaking up benefits of reading Valmiki Ramayan.
Valmiki Ramayan in circulation today have 7th Chapter also, namely, Uttarkand. The readers will see that that is the Chapter devoted to disparaging Bhagvan Ram Chandra, who has been the role model of Hindus for generations. To keep it in line with the tradition of Indian scriptures, the 7th and the last Chapter Uttarkand also closes by stating benefits of reading this book.
Why this repetition?
One may argue that Valmiki repeated that in the 7th Chapter after the 6th chapter. But then why did he not repeat that at the end of each of the previous 5 Chapters?
Similar distortions have been made in the Atharvaveda, as brought to the attention of the author. Hinduism permits review and commentaries on their scriptures, books and literature. That is one route to introducing distortions by vested interests.
At the very least, hope Hindus will start reading (self-studying) their history and literature, and counter and contest distortions.
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