The next part of the mantra asks for milch giving cattle, and cattle which can lift heavy weights. It also asks for fast running horses. Both are very important for an agro-based economy. Indians have very well recognised the importance of these animals long back.
This task of Animal Husbandry and Farming was entrusted to a class of people known as the Vaishyas. As Shreemad Bhagwadgeeta says, “कृषिगौरक्ष्यवाणिज्यं वैश्यकर्म स्वभावजम्” (Agriculture, Cattle farming and business are the actions, karma that a Vaishya has to perform).
Rishi Kashyap with the help of such God loving and God centric Vaishyas has taken care of this mother Earth, when Brahmins and Kshatriya’s failed to do so. It is a long story which needs multiple blogs to be told, so if anyone is interested to know about it should read characters of Rishi Kashyap and Parshuram as explained by Pujaniya Pandurang Shashtriji Athavale in his lectures summarised in a book called Rishi Smaran and Dashavataar. Due to the huge work of the Rishi Kashyap and the Vaishyas, our mother Earth is also named as ‘KAASHYAPI‘ and ‘URVI‘.
‘Kaashyapi’ due to the efforts of Rishi Kashyap. He is the Father of the Indian soil. He holds a special place in our lives. During our rituals, Gotra-uccharan (repeating the name of the Gotra one is born in) is of utmost importance. Gotra means lineage or blood line as we call it nowadays. We Indians believe that we all have our common roots and we belong from the lineage of Sapt Rishis, the seven sages, who made a huge contribution towards buildings our civilisation, culture and society. During these many years many of us have forgotten our Gotra’s. Now being an integral part of our life it is a must to know our Gotra. Shouldn’t we know our ancestors and our lineage? Yet if someone forgets, he/she is considered from the Kashyap Gotra and made to say so ‘Kashyap Gotrotapannoham” (कश्यप गोत्रोत्पन्नोहम् – I belong to the lineage of Kashyap) in all the rituals whenever and wherever required. Today, there has been a huge scientific research related to DNA and Chromosomes, and if anyone is interested can research and find it out from the many information already available on the internet.
‘Urvi’ as She has been uplifted by the Vaishyas. In the Purush Sukta, where the Almighty has been described as creator of the Universe, one of the verses describes thus. “राजन्य: कृत: ब्राह्मणोऽस्य मुखामासीद्वाहू। ऊरू तदस्य यद्वैश्यः पद्भ्यां शूद्रो अजायत॥” (“The Brahmins originate from His Mukha (mouth), the Kshatriya’s from His Bahu (shoulder), the Vaishyas from His URU (thighs) and the Shudras from His PAADA (Feet)”. The Vaishyas come from His Uru and thus the name URVI.
While quoting this above shloka there has been a lot of misunderstanding that the caste system originates from this. And the Brahmins have put themselves at the topmost ladder in the hierarchy. But the thing is that while equating every Varna with the different body parts of the Almighty, the important thing is that they belong to the same Almighty.
At this point, the question I like to ask my readers is that whether your mouth is more important than your shoulders or legs? I think it is these different organs that make us an individual. Every part of the body has its own role and significance. Every part is as important as the other. In the same way, every Varna (caste) is distinct and equally important. No one is big or small, more pious or less. Every Varna (caste) is equal.
The fourth pillar of our society is as important as the first. Shudra’s (and not Kshudra) are the people who provide the basic necessities to the whole human race. In today’s world we call them the service providers. And today we all know and accept their importance in our lives. Yes, during the course of our history, the Shudra’s have been trampled upon and subjugated to different types of tortures from the other 3 Varna’s. And the 3 Varna’s need to correct themselves and apologise to them and take due care of each others sentiments.
But, can we imagine a society without cloth makers, shoe makers, jewellers and all such people who not only provide us our basic necessities but also take care of our needs? And if they are so important to us, how can they be outcastes or untouchables? People living in cities, can you imagine your plight when the regular waste/garbage picker does not come to collect your house waste or society waste. We all start cribbing. Then how can he/she be small? Work doesn’t make anyone small or big, does it? Rather I would say that they are the first people, whom we should be grateful to, as they are the ones who clean our houses by taking away the wastes/garbage and helping us create a pollution free environment in our houses and society at large.
After reading my last 3 blogs, my reader might find my writings as a thing of the past or too conservative. But I appeal to you to apply your minds and brain to the things I have shared. We all agree that we don’t want the caste system as it exists today which discriminates amongst humans. But the whole society is made up by its Intelligentsia (Brahmins), Army (Kshatriyas), Economists (Vaishyas) and Service Providers (Shudras). It exists and maybe known to us by different names but it does exist. At the same time, let us understand that every new born has / should have the right to decide, regarding what he/she wants to do.
These four pillars make our country and I bow to each of them for their contributions towards the society.
Next the Rishi asks for पुरन्धिर् .
What does this mean?
A very integral part of our society, the women who can administer, rule and run a kingdom.Coming up tommorrow…
She will bloom and smile and rejoice,To us She will share her fruits and joys!…
Am sharing the poem which I wrote last year on the same day as we earthlings celebrate Earth Day.
The context today has completely changed. Today we are fighting the most dreaded virus, Corono, collectively called Covid-19. Our Mother Earth is blooming and purifying herself as Her favourite son, Human, has stopped all his activities which were polluting Her.
Am reading reports that the water of the Ganges which we have polluted during the last many years of industrialisation and development, has been cleared and people living on her banks are just filling up their pots with pure water of the Ganges.
The flora and fauna around my house is blooming too. From a last few days we are observing a crow couple building their nest and preparing themselves for the upcoming raining season. It’s a treat to watch them work so hard to build their nest. It made me realise that every animal does work for it’s well being and tries to live in harmony with nature.
Hope we Humans realise our mistakes and try to correct them!
Hope we Humans try to learn to live in Harmony with Nature!
Hope we Humans make this Earth a better place to live in!
Every Indian household, which considers itself cultured, lights a diya in the evening at their homes. Our Vedic Sanskriti has always been the worshipper of radiance, worshipper of Light.
Today we all will light the lamps adhering to signify the triumph of light over darkness. But at the same time, if we continue doing what is not expected from us in these times, like as a citizen not to follow the rules strictly of Social Distancing and Lockdown, or just forwarding messages without checking their truthfulness or even admonishing about things not within our ambit of understanding, then will this lightening of the diyas help?
Let us follow Social Distancing at its strictest level. The next few days, weeks or maybe even months are times to be alert, vigilant and disciplined. Our country doesnt expect anything else. Can we not reciprocate?
Let us stay at home. Spend time with family and self. These are the days of self assessment and improving the understanding about ourselves. Can we not do this for ourselves.
Let us learn to respect nature. Let us learn to live together with all the living creatures however small and large. Have been receiving and seeing videos of rare birds being seen in cities nowadays. Can we not create an environment where we can coexist?
Let us believe in God. For it is Him, who takes care of everyone of us. It is difficult to accept these times as His care, but when we dwell deeply, we might understand His way of teaching.
Let us enjoy these times. Be positive. Be healthy. And let’s keep away from all the negativity in this world. And move together towards the best world we can create together.
And then thinking in today’s context. The world today is realising that am a living being. I am a mere mortal. I can die. And this fear of death has led to the rise of Humanism.
I know I have exaggerated a bit, but atleast people today have realised the importance of living and life. Ask people from Italy, Iran or USA, where many have lost their dear ones and are constantly living in the fear of death. The complete lockdown has made people live with families and in isolation, we all do think Who am I?
नाऽहं पशु, अहं मनुष्यः। (Am not an animal, am an human).
When Aristotle said that “Man is by nature a social animal, an individual who is unsocial naturally and not accidentally is either beneath our notice or more than human. Society is something that precedes the individual. Anyone who either cannot lead the common life or is so self-sufficient as not to need to, and therefore does not partake of society, is either a beast or a God.”, we didn’t understand it. But today in the times of social distancing we suddenly realise what he meant.
The question which comes to my mind is that are we truly social, in it’s TRUE sense? When we have to save ourselves and the society as a whole from this dreaded virus and stop it from spreading, we have started acting selfish. I can understand that when a person sees death in from of him, he will try to save himself first. But it isn’t that way. Death is not the end of this disease. It is curable through isolation. Can we not isolate ourselves and perform our social duty?
Was Aristotle wrong with his conclusion? Not at all. Even animals isolate themselves for many reasons like for reproduction, due to geographical distances, ecological reasons and many more. It is for their survival and propagation of their species. Then can we not as rational animals, (we boast that we can think, reason) do the same for a few days, as the administration guides us.
Well, these are the days to spend in family isolation and think
Who we are?
How are we related?
Are we living upto our relations?
Are we truly a family person?
So in the coming days let’s move a step in this direction and also speed up the quest for finding out Who am I?