There are two typed copies of this Chapter. Both of them contain additions and corrections in the handwriting of Dr. Bahasaheb Ambedkar. After consideration, we decided that the latter version should be included here. This essay, consisting of three pages only, seems to be an introduction to a larger subject Dr. Ambedkar probably had in his mind. — Editors
Much of the ancient history of India is no history at all. Not that ancient India has no history. It has plenty of it. But it has lost its character. It has been made mythology to amuse women and children. This seems to have been done deliberately by the Brahminical writers. Take the word Deva. What does it mean? Is the word Jana Vishesh represent a member of the human family? It is made to appear superhuman agency. By this the pith of history contained in it is squeezed out.
Along with the word Deva occur the names of Yaksha, Gana, Gandharva, Kinnars. Who were they? The impression one gets on reading the Mahabharat and Ramayana is that they are imaginary beings who filled the horizon but did not exist.
But the Yaksha, Gana, Gandharva, Kinnaras were also members of the human family. They were in the service of the Devas. The Yakshas were guarding the palaces. Ganas were guarding the Devas.
Gandharvas were amusing the Devas by music and dancing. The Kinnaras were also in the service of the Gods. The descendants of the Kinnaras are even now living in Himachal Pradesh.
Take the name Asura. The description of Asura given, in the Mahabharat and Ramayana make out as though they belonged to nonhuman world. An Asura is described to eat ten carts-load of food. They are monsters in size. They sleep for six months. They have ten mouths. Who is a Rakshas? He too is described as a non-human creature. In size, in his capacity for eating, in his habits of life he resembled the Asura.
There is a plenty of references to the Nagas. But who is a Naga? A Naga is represented as a serpent or a snake. Can this be true? Whether true or not, it is so and Hindus believe it. Ancient Indian history must be exhumed. Without its exhumation Ancient India will go without history. Fortunately with the help of the Buddhist literature, Ancient Indian History can be dug out of the debris which the Brahmin writers have heaped upon in a fit of madness.
The Buddhist literature helps a great deal to remove the debris and see the underlying substance quite clearly and distinctly.
The Buddhist literature shows that the Devas were a community of human beings. There are so many Devas who come to the Buddha to have their doubts and difficulties removed. How could this be unless the Devas were human beings.
Again the Buddhist canonical literature throws a flood of light on the puzzling question of the Nagas. It makes a distinction between wombborn Nagas and egg-born Nagas and thereby making it clear that the word Naga has two-fold meaning. In its original sense it stood for the name of a human community.
The Asuras again are not monsters. They too are a Jan-Vishesh human beings.
According to Satpatha Bramhana, the Asuras are the descendants of Prajapathi the Lord of the creation. How they became evil spirits is not known. But the fact is recorded that they fought against the Devas for the possession of the earth and that they were overcome by the Devas and that they finally succumbed. The point is clear that the Asuras were members of the human family and not monsters.
With this exhumation of debris, we can see Ancient Indian History in a new light.