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Are Brahmins the Dalits of today?

This thought-provoking article written by the popular Francois Gautier appeared in rediff a few days ago. He raises a pertinent question in light of the recent OBC reservation hullabaloo, and makes his point with studies and statistics, demonstrating how the once upper-caste brahmins are now working in public toilets, railway stations etc., and how their per capita income is way less than the supposedly backward castes.

I am of the opinion that it is not just the brahmins that are affected by the whole reservation scheme. Sure it makes more sense to victimise them because (a) they appear to be the most high-handed and, ironically in a sense, 'untouchable' by the lower echelons of society and (b) because they symbolise Hinduism, as Gautier rightly pointed out in his essay
When they attack Brahmins, their target is unmistakably Hinduism.
when talking about anti-brahministic groups. It is ok to use brahmins as a figurehead in order to propagate the argument, but in a realistic discussion, the other forward castes which are suffering equally, cannot be left out of the equation.

Getting back to the brahmin issue, I found an interesting set of questions on this topic in a forum, and I am picking a few to answer them in my way.

Q.Why do poeple get surprise if a brahmin eats non-veg or takes liquor. Why should a Brahimin by birth follow any discipline? Why should Vedic students who know that the profession does not ean them much of money spend/ waste their time memorising and analysing vedas? Do these students and their parents believe that the society would protect them? If yes, is their faith misplaced?If the social system does not want brahmins and associated system, it should be removed and forget all the rituals, vedas, teaching, mentoring etc. Let brahmins who are committed and disciplined also enjoy their time/life.
When there is no demand for a service, there is no point continuing it.

A. Brahminism is a way of life. Just like every other cultural stream, it has its customs, its purpose, and its failings. The brahmin tradition will continue to grow within those cultural bounds that, by the day, stretch a little, tear a little and mend a little. It may not be as dynamic as some other streams - hence there would not be any radical changes such as every brahmin suddenly discontinuing his/her rituals, but it is slowly changing too. It is also very erroneous to assume that brahmins are doing a service, their holistic practices are performed as a drudgery and that they are not 'enjoying' their life. To brahmins these characteristics are undercurrents in their lives, and will continue to exist, with or without an obvious purpose. This is how they pledge their allegiance to their heritage of their past, how they recognise themselves in the present, and how they attempt to survive the culture for posterity. To change their way of living in order to prove a point (or because it is going unappreciated) is absurd and meaningless.

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