We all know of the caste system established during the Aryan rule in India, on the basis of a persons ancestry; he/she was divided into 4 castes- Warrior/Priest/Trader/Common Man
I was recently reading upon the older Tamil cultures which thrived in the subcontinent fairly long and in peace (due to the fact that south India was protected by mountain ranges which prevented any unwanted attack and conquerors from the north). The Tamils had 5 major caste divisions which go like:
- the Vaelir - the farmers,
- the Malavar - the hill people who gather hill products, and the traders,
- the Naagar - people in charge of border security, who guarded the city wall and distant fortresses .
- the Kadambar - people who thrive on forests and
- the Thiraiyar - the seafarers.
(taken from wiki- reference- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Tamil_country)
This caste division looked to me a lot more convincing and intricate that the previous. This provides kind of division on one’s occupation (I really don’t believe Brahmins and Kshatriyas are a permanent or actual useful occupation of any sort. I really don’t believe in paying people to pray or kill for a society- and the reason that these two castes hold a certain power over others- either a religious or physical one is the reason they became the higher castes in Indian civilization)- the tamil caste system also has a caste responsible for security- but do note—> this is related to border security and town security- it does not amount to being a king or royalty as it did in the indo-aryan caste system.
I really don’t like labels to be put, i guess it becomes a lot more abstract that way and the average human cannot live like that, I would rather people did everything related to all the caste divisions themselves to live. rather than one particular occupation or lifestyle. But this was something interesting and thought I would share none the less.
(oh this division still exists today – there are corporates, politicians, agrarians, scientists, middlemen and army/terrorists- nothing much changes except probably the label’s names)