Friday, August 25, 2006

Caste and the illusion of identity

While coming by the auto rickshaw this idea hit my mind about the tradition of casteism in India. Now we normally associate a person by his caste. What we really mean is that we tag an individual with a particular identity and associate all the customs and rituals of that tag with that individual. It is like a parent-child concept in Software. The characteristics of that parent completely overshadows the individual. The Hindu society and its peers is divided into a a hierarchy of caste and classes. This, I am told was propounded by Manu and he did this according to the principle of division of labour. But what I don't know is when we started developing prejudices and bias towards individuals of different castes. We should have left the individual scot free and let them do whatever they like.