Posted in Food For Soul, Political History

Proof for ‘Dravida’ identity in Soundarya Lahari

तव स्तन्यं मन्ये धरणिधरकन्ये हृदयतः

पयःपारावारः परिवहति सारस्वतमिव ।

दयावत्या दत्तं द्रविडशिशुरास्वाद्य तव य-

त्कवीनां प्रौढानामजनि कमनीयः कवयिता ॥ ७५ ॥

tava stanyaṃ manye dharaṇidharakanye hṛdayataḥ

payaḥpārāvāraḥ parivahati sārasvatamiva ;

dayāvatyā dattaṃ draviḍaśiśurāsvādya tava ya-

tkavīnāṃ prauḍhānāmajani kamanīyaḥ kavayitā . 75

Translation of 75th sloka in Soundarya Lahari composed by Adi Shankara in the 7th century CE in Sanskrit:

Oh daughter of the king of mountains,
I feel in my mind,
That the milk that flows from your breast,
Is really the goddess of learning, Saraswati,
In the form of a tidal wave of nectar.
For, milk given by you, who is full of mercy,
Made the child of Dravida*,
The king among those great poets,
Whose works stole one’s mind. ॥ 76 ॥

The Arya – Dravida dialogue is raging debate always in India. Anyone born north of the Vindhyas is Aryan – today’s north Indians. Those from the south of dividing line of Tropic of Cancer or the Vindhya ranges are the south Indians or the Dravidians. There are conflicting theories on the Aryan-Dravidian divide. Some paint everyone the same while some point out to racial differences. In recent times, attempts are made to establish that the Aryan Dravidian division is a British concoction to aid ‘divide and rule’ practice of the Raj and a mischief and that there is no evidence to the contrary. Most of what you read about the so-called Aryan-Dravidian oneness floated by US based and Indian/Hindu intellects sound too very convincing that you have to pinch yourself to ask whether indeed you the dusky south Indian could be the same as the Punjabi or Bengali or the Maharashtrian or the Kashmiri or the Bihari or the Gujarati for instance. The fact is that when you are a Tamil or Kannadiga or Andhriite or Keralite, you know you are Dravidian and you are way different from the Aryan Indians. Yet we are Indians, that is the point. So it is extremely disturbing when you are repeatedly told that there is no credence to the Aryan-Dravidian division theory propounded by the British Raj.

Well, evidence emerges from Soundarya Lahari that i am learning online. The hundred slokas in Sanskrit composed by Adi Shankara in the 7th (seventh) century CE is the irrefutable proof to the existing Aryan Dravidian equations of those times in ancient India when Islam was not yet born and Christianity had not yet reached most parts of the world.

And ages before Bhagvad Pada and Adi Shankara, we have had references right from Ramayana that is now deemed possible in another plane of time. Lord Ram who ruled Ayodhya was Aryan. Ravan who ruled Sri Lanka was Dravidian and in all probability spoke Thamizh as against Ram’s Sanskrit! Kerala celebrates the festival of Onam until today waiting for Mahabali’s return. This is one province in India where Hindus have not celebrated Deepavali until very recently. Keeping with times however, Diwali is set to become more popular.

The seventy fifth sloka of Soundarya Lahari mentions (Adi) Shankara (as understood) breastfed by Mother Goddess which is the reason for his mukthi and/or enlightenment and the gift of prowess of language at such an young age. Penned by Adi Shankara, the sloka mentions in the words of Bhagavad Pada (guru to Adi Shankara), Devi breastfeeding the ‘Dravida shishu’ or the Dravidian baby. Another historian from the ancient Bharat, Kalhana who was from Kashmir, also is recorded to have made mention of the Dravidian kingdom (of whose existence we have no evidence) in his acclaimed work ‘Rajatarangini.’

I have copy-pasted this from wiki:

Rajatarangini:- is a metrical legendary and historical chronicle of the north-western Indian subcontinent, particularly the kings of Kashmir. It was written in Sanskrit by Kashmiri historian Kalhana in the 12th century CE. The work consists of 7826 verses, which are divided between eight books called tarangas.

Accordingly the Aryans are the north Indian brahmins with surnames such as Mishra, Bhat, Pandit, Bhattacharya, Sharma etc.. Among the Dravidians, the south Indian brahmins are referred to as ‘Mukhya Dravida’ (which inconspicuously refers to the rest of the south Indians as Dravida).

Even our Hindutva activists and RSS and BJP cannot defy or overrule Adi Shankara and Bhagavad Pada I suppose? I wonder how the so-called the Hindu thinktank and the self-certified custodians of Hindu Dharma and Hindu interests around the world can miss such a grand evidence staring right at their faces in very important and renowned Sanskrit literary works that date back by some 1500 years at least. The men who wrote these scriptures were protagonists of Sanathana Dharma holding the beacon for others to follow in the entire Bharat Varsha.

Okay I get it. You want to refuse Dravidian ideology because you want a united India. And in your estimation, a united India is singular in identity. But you cannot simply brush under carpet the genealogy of an entire Dravidian race. Thamizh is as old as Sanskrit. A parallel civilization existed and flourished in Thamizh Nad when there was Indus valley civilization in the north. In fact, we had a more advanced civilization (rever Keezhadi).

Being Dravidian may be different but that does not make any of us less patriotic or less Indian. I have NOT stepped onto Delhi and I am not exactly keen. I have not been to the north at all. But I am as much Indian at heart as any of the north Indians and who knows, much more a Hindu probably than most north Indians. Neither is the Hindi language a prerequisite to Indian citizenship.

I think it is time to put the Aryan-Dravidian debate to rest. Well, there is a third ethnic branch in India which is the yellow race or the North Eastern people from the seven sister states. Dubbed the ‘chinkis’ for their chinese features, the north easterners too face the flak in northern India. These chinkis are those who are making life easy for us all around India – from working in billing/cash counters in shopping malls and waiting at our tables in restaurants to servicing at the beauty salons. They fill out a big gap in India for disciplined labour at low cost in essential FCMG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods division) industry. But for them our society will be bereft of quality workers in the secondary sector of the Indian economy.

Diversity is the beauty of India. Why the denial. Unity in diversity is our strength. Let be. Why should the Dravidian history be suppressed. Dravidians need not have to sync with everything Aryan. We can still be equal and patriotic Indian citizens harbouring nationalist ideology.

I never for once imagined Rabindranath Tagore planting the word ‘dravidian’ in his composition that went on to become India’s national anthem without a shred of evidence to such an entity or distinct regional identity. With that one single coinage he covered and clubbed the entire south in one master stroke. Merited the Nobel just for that!

EVR will be the eternal hero whether you like it or not. EVR was relevant in Indian history especially Dravidian history. He matters to the masses. If not for EVR entire scheduled community of Tamil Nadu would be now converted Christians. Human rights matter over matters of faith. The south is forever proudly defiant. Far more literate. Progressive in thinking. It is possible for some of us to retain our Dravidian roots and at the same time admire Modi. Not many self-congratulatory and self-appointed saviours of Hindu Dharma can get that.

When Sanathana Dharma survived without a Mecca or Vatican, a Koran or Bible, an Imam or Pope, the one and only unorganized religion of the world that is Hinduism can look after itself, don’t fret. I shall not entrust my precious Hindu Dharma into the hands of bigots and hypocrites who want to lie deliberately and twist history. Hindu Dharma shall prevail to eternity with or without you.

Religions have to evolve with time. Hinduism has evolved for better with centuries. Like any religion, we have our flaws but we are working on them. Flaws in Hindu Dharma gave birth to Buddhism and Jainism which again slipped into the rhetoric rendering them pointless.

We are a nation who wouldn’t even want to table the facts of Keezhadi archeological excavations to the world. Jainism reached Thamizh Nad first over Hindu Dharma. And unto then, the ancient Thamizh had no recorded religion. Hinduism fast replaced Jainism and not always without violence. Now I am waiting for someone like Shashi Tharoor to steal my ideas and speak in UK next!