Monday, January 30, 2006

How Old ?!

is the Indian (Bharatiya) concept of Nation ?! Did the Brits give us that ?

Well, not a scholarly attempt, but these verses should give some clue...

Case 1 :-)

RigVeda III.53.12

vis'va_mitrasya raks.ati brahmedam bha_ratam janam

Case 2:

Atharva Veda 19.41.1 (Note, the transliteration of the shloka may have errors)


Translatin: The sages, aspiring for a higher and better standard,work with diligence and devotion; They inspire people to do their duty with dedication. This is the way how Nations and communities grow strong.


Soothsayer said...

am naive at this, but did they have any idea of geographical boundaries. i know mlechhas were supposed to imply foreigners, so there must have been something of the sort. have a lot of new post on mine too...btw...

drisyadrisya said...

Well, as I said, the intend was not to explore the details, but to point out some interesting aspects

To your question, I would tend to believe that Bharata Rashtram was there as an ideological concept as well quite a geographical entity - the exact boundaries of which may have been dynamic

Again, when exactly did it come into being- difficult to say- and I would tend to believe that it was dynamic

Shankaracharya, in his travels, chose those places, which somewhat defines 4 parts of India.. Asethu Himachalam has been a saying for time immerial.. "Gangecha Yamunecha .." has been chanted by South Indians also for ages.. So some sort of a concept surey existed well before the Brits.. and I would also tend to believe that spirituality or religion played the major role in defining those concepts and boundaries

But yeah, questions still remain.. how abt the north east for example.. How were the princely states viewed, did they have the notion of "foreigners". If so why did they fall to islamic invasions, and some atleast even make allies with them .. Some of it can be answered- for example, the fire power that comes out of islam is just incomparable, and its no surprise that the pacifist Buddhist fell easily to them, even if they had any concept of Nation and so on

anyways, a scholary work is beyond the scope

Soothsayer said...

the reason i asked actually was because i came across a website of Pakistani hi"story" that said there was never a concept of the Indus mentioned in the Vedas and that they were a free people who were conquered and enslaved by the Mauryas, but have never been an integral part of "Hindustan". so just wanted to know if in the Vedas there were actually any references.

drisyadrisya said...

Well, there was no "Indus" at the time of Vedas. Sindu was only a small tributory (I believe) of the mighty Saraswati which is quite a lot mentioned in the Vedas

Oh, Paki history ? gotcha :-)

The fellows who worship those who raped and killed their ancestors (sans islam) a few generations before ?!