Details

ISBN-10: 1594770484
ISBN-13: 9781594770487
Publisher: Inner Traditions International
Publish Date: 07/01/2005
Dimensions: 9.04" L, 6.12" W, 0.41" H

India: A Civilization of Differences: The Ancient Tradition of Universal Tolerance (Us)

Paperback

Price: $14.95

Overview

A collection of Daniélou’s writings that builds a bold and cogent defense of India’s caste system

– Looks at the Hindu caste system not as racist inequality but as a natural ordering of diversity

– Reveals the stereotypes of Indian society invented to justify colonialism

– Includes never-before-published articles by the internationally recognized Hindu scholar and translator of The Complete Kama Sutra (200,000 copies sold)

In classical India social ethics are based on each individual’s functional role in society. These ethics vary according to caste in order to maximize the individual’s effectiveness in the social context. This is the definition of caste ethics.

The Indian caste system is not a hierarchy with some who are privileged and others who are despised; it is a natural ordering, an organizing principle, of a society wherein differences are embraced rather than ignored. In the caste system it is up to the individual to achieve perfection in the state to which he or she is born, since to a certain extent that state also forms part of a person’s nature. All people must accomplish their individual spiritual destinies while, as members of a social group, ensuring the continuity of the group and collaborating in creating a favorable framework for all human life–thereby fulfilling the collective destiny of the group. The notion of transmigration provides an equalizing effect on this prescribed system in that today’s prince may be reborn as a woodcutter and the Brahman as a shoemaker.

In India: A Civilization of Differences, Daniélou explores this seldom-heard side of the caste debate and argues effectively in its favor. This rare collection of the late author’s writings contains several never-before-published articles and offers an in-depth look at the structure of Indian society before and after Western colonialism.

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Reviews
This is definitely a very personal view of a country where the author studied music, philosophy, and Hindu traditions, however that personal touch brings magic to what might have been a rather controversial subject matter. I recommend this book to any student of philosophy, sociology, or spirituality because Alain Danielou shows the ancient framework that allowed the mystics, mahatmas, and sages to spring up in India and gift us with their wisdom.– "Lesley Crossingham, New Dawn, No. 120, May-June 2010"
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Details

ISBN-10: 1594770484
ISBN-13: 9781594770487
Publisher: Inner Traditions International
Publish Date: 07/01/2005
Dimensions: 9.04" L, 6.12" W, 0.41" H
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