Tamil literature is undeniably a deep ocean of classics but in my opinion most of them are irrational and a revelation of Brahminist domination. They are soaked in myths and nauseating fables. Especially ancient Tamil literature is a storehouse of superstitions and obnoxious fabrications depicting Aryan strategies to hoodwink society. Ramayana, Mahabharata, Periya Puranam and Thiruvilaiyadal are hailed as great epics. Silappathikaram and Manimekalai are commended as classics. There are many more renowned works, but I don’t find much difference between one and the other. It is very difficult to find a work which has a rational outlook or a work that does not impose Brahminism on the readers.
Cities Set on Fire
Ramayana says Hanuman destroyed Sri Lanka by fire; Silappathikaram says Kannagi destroyed Madurai by fire. The former seems to be atrocious but the latter exposes atrocity, stupidity, and obscenity. Why were the people of Madurai punished for the blunder of king Pandiyan? Why were the lives of Brahmins alone spared by the central character Kannagi? Kannagi’s husband had to die because of the mistake of a goldsmith. To make amends for the injustice, we are told that thousands of innocent goldsmiths were killed, followed by slaughter of cows and ceremonial rituals. Is this a classic produced by the ancient Tamil scholars? Can it be called a classic that promotes social justice?
‘A porridge for ghosts’
“The ghosts cheer and proceed to the battlefield. They learn how the Kalinga soldiers who survived saved themselves by pretending to be Brahmins (they used bowstrings as sacred thread}, or Buddhists (they soaked their clothes orange by washing it in blood), or Jains (discarding their clothes, tearing out their hair).”
Excerpts from the article under the column, ‘From Cult to Culture, by Devdutt Pattanaik about the 12th century war poem Kalingathu Parani (Tamil) that celebrates the exploits of a Chola army against the Kalinga empire
Courtesy: The Hindu
Baffling Character Kannagi
According to Silappathikaram, Kovalan goes to a brothel, his wife sees him off allowing him to take jewels and gold coins with him. Would a sensible wife encourage such an unfaithful husband? But this woman is hailed even today as an ideal wife. Is it a mockery on Tamil women in general? What does it imply? I am really baffled.
I would ignore it if it is a fictional fable like the “1001 Arabian Nights”, meant for recreation and amusement. But Kannagi has been worshipped as a goddess and we can also find temples erected for her in many parts of Tamil Nadu. She has been deified by our people, as the symbol of chastity. In my opinion it is sheer degradation of women.
Impact of Mythologies
In European countries prostitution is considered a crime blaming it equally on men. But in India, adultery is permitted as the birthright of men. Unfaithful women are tortured but not men. Ancient Tamil classics are the cause to a great extent. They have paved the way for such a double standard in society. Gullible people adhere to the codes of conduct imposed by such literary works of the bygone eras. A lot of rituals are being followed by our people under the influence of mythologies, scriptures, and ridiculous fables.
Our men go all the way to Varanasi to take a dip in the Ganges and worship parents dead long ago. Foundation stones are brought by some from the Himalayas and washed in the river Ganges before commencing construction works. Why do they attach sanctity to the waters of a river and the rocks from a mountain range? Obviously by the impact of our mythologies in which such elements are glorified. How are we to reform our people who are still in the darkness of ignorance?
Slaves of Aryans
Most of the Tamil kings and emperors have been slaves of the Aryans according to our history. They have blindly followed them and shown allegiance. I list below what I find irksome:
1. When Chenguttuvan’s father died in a battle, his wives sacrificed themselves on his funeral pyre.
2. Brahmin priests were protected well by Tamil kings.
3. Tamil kings celebrated Indiran who was an Aryan god.
4. Tamil kings have believed in ‘karma’ – punishment for sins committed in the previous birth. This is an Aryan influence.
5. Tamil kings believed in auspicious and inauspicious time, following the Aryans.
6. Rituals were performed to ward off evil.
7. They believed that the dead would come back to life by divine miracles.
8. Belief in reincarnation following the belief of the Aryans.
9. Tamil kings believed in the power of curses.
10. Belief in transmigration of souls.
11. Believed in travel to heaven.
12. Practised witchcraft and black magic.
13. Believed in guardian angels.
14. Tamil kings infused paranormal power to the characters in literature.
15. Believed in curing diseases by sorcery.
16. Introduced change of appearance in stories, disguise, impersonation, etc.
17. Made gods and goddesses speak to humans in literary works.
18. Depicted gods descending from heaven to earth.
19. Made Characters ascend to heaven from earth.
20. Believed that offerings to priests beside the river Ganges would bring good fortune.
21. Tamil kings believed in astrology.
22. Believed in the ideal time for marriages.
23. Attached divinity to all the four directions.
24. Worshipped Aryan gods Shiva and Vishnu.
25. Practised Yagna; rituals beside fire.
26. Believed that sages and holy saints would bless kings.
27. Patronized Brahmin priests in temples.
28. Bathed in the Ganges to make amends for sins.
I stop here because of time constraint. The list would be endless. Let me take a break. All these 28 points prove the Aryan influence on Tamil literature. The Tamil kings incorporated all these in the literature of their periods to indicate their loyalty to Aryan masters. These kings behaved like slaves, devoid of self-respect.
Illusion of Centuries
For centuries our Tamil kings of various dynasties have been faithfully adapting Aryan lifestyle, Aryan beliefs, and codes of conduct. All these naturally reflected in Tamil classics of various periods. Ultimately our people feel prey to the illusion that they are all acceptable and are to be sincerely adhered to. We must work hard for their disillusionment.
I cannot discuss this problem with insensitive people who do not know what literature and art really mean. It is a blunder to believe that these ancient classics are signs of ancient Tamil culture and civilisation. To blindly believe that all our ancient era kings were the foundations of Tamil culture is stupidity. We must begin to think out of the box.
Need for Reconstruction
We should admit that we did not have an exclusive identity before the Aryan invasion. Hence, we should generate an identity for ourselves, new art, new literature, and new culture.
We must delink ourselves from the chains of Aryan influences. We need a new identity for ourselves. No race has ever existed without embracing Aryanism. Hence, we must reconstruct ourselves and form an exclusive identity throwing overboard every kind of Aryan impact.
We must study comparatively every aspect of the Tamils with that of the Aryans. We must probe into the differences between Aryan gods and the gods of the Tamils; the condition of Tamil women and the Aryan women; between the principles of the Tamils and those of the Aryans. This would help us enlighten ourselves.
I conclude my speech by stressing that our literature, art, music, and culture should be free from Aryan influence. Let us form a new society devoid of Aryan impact.
Courtesy: Viduthalai – June 30, 1943
(Translated by: M.R.Manohar)