previous next

[88]

It is when we see this discrimination in this light, that we learn to appreciate its true character. The Brahmins and the Sudras, in India, from generation to generation, were kept apart. If a Sudra presumed to sit upon a Brahmin's carpet, he was punished with banishment. With a similar inhumanity among us, the black child, who goes to sit on the same benches at school with the white child, is banished, not from the country, but from the school. In both cases it is the triumph of Caste. But the offence is greater with us, because, unlike the Hindoos, we acknowledge that men are born equal.

The Advocate cites from high authorities, many illustrations of the cruelty and barbarous character of caste, as it appears in India.

Bishop Heber, of Calcutta, characterizes Caste as follows:

It is a system which tends, more than any else the devil has yet invented, to destroy the feelings of general benevolence, and to make nine-tenths of mankind the hopeless slaves of the remainder.

Bishop Wilson, also of Calcutta, the successor of Heber, says:—

The Gospel recognizes no such distinctions as those of castes, imposed by a heathen usage, bearing in some respects a supposed religious obligation, condemning those in the lower ranks to perpetual abasement, placing an immovable barrier against all general advance and improvement in society, cutting asunder the bonds of human fellowship on the one hand, and preventing those of Christian love on the other. Such distinctions, I say, the Gospel does not recognize. On the contrary, it teaches us that God ‘hath made of one blood all the nations of men.’

This is the testimony of a native of Hindostan, converted to Christianity:

Caste is the stronghold of that principle of pride which makes a man think of himself more highly than he ought to think. Caste infuses itself into, and forms the very essence of pride itself.

Another native speaks as follows:

I therefore regard Caste as opposed to the main scope, principles, and doctrines of Christianity; for, either Caste must be admitted to be true and of divine authority, or Christianity must be so admitted. If you admit Caste to be true, the whole fabric of Christianity must come down; for the nature of Caste and its associations destroy the first principles of Christianity. Caste makes distinction among creatures where God has made none.

Disguise it as you will, it is this hateful institution. But the words Caste and Equality are contradictory. They mutually exclude each other.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Calcutta (West Bengal, India) (4)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Heber (4)
Henry Wilson (2)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: