Hindus are Not A Nation

13 07 2007

There is an utter lack among the Hindus of what the sociologists call ” consciousness of kind “. There is no Hindu consciousness of kind. In every Hindu the consciousness that exists is the consciousness of his caste. That is the reason why the Hindus cannot be said to form a society or a nation. There are however many Indians whose patriotism does not permit them to admit that Indians are not a nation, that they are only an amorphous mass of people. They have insisted that underlying the apparent diversity there is a fundamental unity which marks the life of the Hindus in as much as there is a similarity of habits and customs, beliefs and thoughts which obtain all over the continent of India. Similarity in habits and customs, beliefs and thoughts there is. But one cannot accept the conclusion that therefore, the Hindus constitute a society. To do so is to misunderstand the essentials which go to make up a society.

N. B :- Next Dr. Ambedkar goes on to discuss “what constitute society“.

SECTION VI Annihilation of Caste. Vol-I, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writing and Speeches

Castes Among Non-Hindus

13 07 2007

….there is one set which finds nothing peculiar nor odious in the Caste System of the Hindus. Such Hindus cite the case of Muslims, Sikhs and Christians and find comfort in the fact that they too have castes amongst them…………………………………. you will find that caste among Non-Hindus is fundamentally different from caste among Hindus. First, the ties, which consciously make the Hindus hold together, are non-existent, while among Non-Hindus there are many that hold them together. The strength of a society depends upon the presence of points of contact, possibilities of interaction between different groups which exist in it. These are what Carlyle calls ” organic filaments ” i.e. the elastic threads which help to bring the disintegrating elements together and to reunite them. There is no integrating farce among the Hindus to counteract the disintegration caused by caste. While among the Non-Hindus there are plenty of these organic filaments which bind them together. Again it must be borne in mind that although there are castes among Non-Hindus, as there are among Hindus, caste has not the same social significance for Non-Hindus as it has for Hindus. Ask Mohammedan or a Sikh, who he is? He tells you that he is a Mohammedan or a Sikh as the case may be. He does not tell you his caste although he has one and you are satisfied with his answer. When he tells you that he is a Muslim, you do not proceed to ask him whether he is a Shiya or a Suni; Sheikh or Saiyad ; Khatik or Pinjari. When he tells you he is a Sikh, you do not ask him whether he is Jat or Roda ; Mazbi or Ramdasi. But you are not satisfied, if a person tells you that he is a Hindu. You feel bound to inquire into his caste. Why ? Because so essential is caste in the case of a Hindu that without knowing it you do not feel sure what sort of a being he is. That caste has not the same social significance among Non-Hindus as it has among Hindus is clear if you take into consideration the consequences which follow breach of caste. There may be castes among Sikhs and Mohammedans but the Sikhs and the Mohammedans will not outcast a Sikh or a Mohammedan if he broke his caste. Indeed, the very idea of excommunication is foreign to the Sikhs and the Mohammedans. But with the Hindus the case is entirely different. He is sure to be outcasted if he broke caste. This shows the difference in the social significance of caste to Hindus and Non-Hindus. This is the second point of difference. But there is also a third and a more important one. Caste among the non-Hindus has no religious consecration; but among the Hindus most decidedly it has. Among the Non-Hindus, caste is only a practice, not a sacred institution. They did not originate it. With them it is only a survival. They do not regard caste as a religious dogma. Religion compels the Hindus to treat isolation and segregation of castes as a virtue. Religion does not compel the Non-Hindus to take the same attitude towards caste. If Hindus wish to break caste, their religion will come in their way. But it will not be so in the case of Non-Hindus. It is, therefore, a dangerous delusion to take comfort in the mere existence of caste among Non-Hindus, without caring to know what place caste occupies in their life and whether there are other ” organic filaments “, which subordinate the feeling of caste to the feeling of community. The sooner the Hindus are cured of this delusion the butter.

N.B :- There are few sentences regarding the practical division in society and questions on Ideal society before Dr. Ambedkar answers the question of castes in non-Hindu societies in India, which are withheld for the purpose of clarity (shown as gap/dotted line). The same could be found here.

Annihilation of castes. Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writing and Speeches

Fanning nationalism

6 06 2007

For nationality to flame into nationalism two conditions must exist. First, there must arise the “will to live as a nation”. Nationalism is the dynamic expression of that desire. Secondly, there must be a territory which nationalism could occupy and make it a state, as well as a cultural home of the nation

CHAPTER 3 – A Nation Calling for Home. PART-I Muslim Case For Pakistan. “Reprint of Pakistan Or The Partition of India”. Vol-VIII, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writing and Speeches

Nationality Vs Nationalism

6 06 2007

First, there is a difference between nationality and nationalism. They are two different psychological states of the human mind. Nationality means “consciousness of kind, awareness of the existence of that tie of kinship.” Nationalism means ” the desire for a separate national existence for those who are bound by this tie of kinship.” Secondly, it is true that there cannot be nationalism without the feeling of nationality being in existence. But, it is important to bear in mind that the converse is not always true.

CHAPTER 3 – A Nation Calling for Home. PART-I Muslim Case For Pakistan. “Reprint of Pakistan Or The Partition of India”. Vol-VIII, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writing and Speeches


2 06 2007

Nationality is a subjective psychological feeling. It is a feeling of a corporate sentiment of oneness which makes those who are charged with it feel that they are kith and kin. This national feeling is a double edged feeling. It is at once a feeling of fellowship for one’s own kith and an anti-fellowship feeling for those who are not one’s own kith. It is a feeling of “consciousness of kind” which binds together those who are within the limits of the kindred and severs them from those who are outside the limits of the kindred. It is a longing to belong to one’s own group and a longing not to belong to any other group. This is the essence of what is called a nationality and national feeling. This longing to belong to one’s own kindred as I said is a subjective psychological feeling and what is important to bear in mind is that the longing to belong to one’s own kindred is quite independent of geography, culture or economic or social conflict.

CHAPTER 7- The Triumph of Brahmanism : Regicide or the birth of Counter-Revolution, PART-III, Revolution and Counter-Revolution, Vol-III Dr. Ambedkar Writting and Speeches.