I am always intrigued about the concept of caste system among the set called the Hindus. Various explanations have been given from the origin ascribe to GOD (perhaps God of the Hindus) to some sociological structure of the society. While reading about the structural basis of the Hindus I wonder why such divisions are not there in other societies and peculiar only to the Hindus. Besides it looks illogical that a set of people is willing to relegate themselves in the lower levels of hierarchy. If you read early Tamil literature none of them speak about castes in such strict terms as prevailing in the recent centuries. Some Tamil scholars argue there was no caste system during Sangam period. Or the early Tamil scholars did not talk about the prevailing caste system. If it is the former then why Tamil society allowed them to be enmeshed in the caste system. Recently I read Ambedkar’s views on the origin of caste. (http://www.ambedkar.org/ambcd/01.Caste%20in%20India.htm)
Even this did not satisfy me completely. Ambedkar was a rational and honest sociologist and he ends his note “For myself I shall find as much pleasure in a positive destruction of my own ideology, as in a rational disagreement on a topic, which, notwithstanding many learned disquisitions is likely to remain controversial forever. To conclude, while I am ambitious to advance a Theory of Caste, if it can be shown to be untenable I shall be equally willing to give it up.”.
This(Ambedkar’s notes) must be read by all including those who support caste system and those who are against the system and willing to discuss this dispassionately.

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