(Table of contents below)
In 1962, the propounder of the new paradigm of social, economic and political liberation, Shrii Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar, explained the principles of the Proutist Economy as part of a book of Sanskrit sutras (aphorisms) called Ananda Sutram. A sutra has many meanings and dimensions requiring a vast commentary. Let us briefly look at those sutras that propound the principles of Proutist Proutist Social Dynamics.
The first sutra reveals,
5-1. Varńapradhánatá cakradháráyám.
[In the movement of the social cycle, one class is always dominant.]
varńa = colour (here, mental colour); pradhánatá = predominance; cakra = “cycle”, social cycle; dháráyám (7th case) = in the flow
Purport: Since no well-knit social order had evolved in the distant past, we may call that age the Shúdra Age; in those days all people survived by their manual labour. Then came the age of clan leaders – the age of the strong and the brave – which we may call the Kśatriya Age. This was followed by the age of intellectuals, which we may call the Vipra Age. Finally came the age of capitalists, the Vaeshya Age.
When the warriors and intellectuals are reduced to the level of manual labourers as a result of exploitation during the Vaeshya Age, shúdra revolution occurs. The shúdras have neither a well-knit social order nor sufficient intellect to govern society. Hence, the post-capitalist administration passes into the hands of those who provide the leadership in the shúdra revolution. These people are brave and courageous, so they begin the second Kśatriya Age.
In this way the Shúdra, Kśatriya, Vipra and Vaeshya Ages move in succession, followed by revolution; then the second cyclic order begins. Thus, the rotation of the samája cakra [social cycle] continues.
“The essence of the parallel psychic waves of society is determined by the medium [average degree] of the following factors: 1) a common language; 2) similar manners and customs; 3) a similar mode of living; 4) similar traditions; 5) racial similarity; 6) religious similarity; 7) a common culture; and 8) a common objective or goal. Unfortunately, these factors are generally neglected at the time of building a social structure because they are not the causes of the collective psychology but the means through which the collective psychology flows. In actual fact a common sentiment, common psychic waves, form the essential vital force of a social structure. This is the reason we say that society is the expression of parallel psychic waves, and arises because of the mental tendency of moving in unison.
It is clear that society is supported by the immense collective power of many individuals. This is why the popular concept of society is that of a collection of individuals. But a mere aggregate of many individuals whose psychic waves move in different directions, that is, whose psychic waves are not parallel but divergent and distorted by dissension, cannot be called a society.” (The Responsibility of Society)
“I have already told you that the sentient principle is white. So the people in whose minds white vibrations are flowing we call Sattvaguńii or sentient (also known as vipravarńa). The mutative principle is red. So those people whose minds are filled with red vibrations we call Rajoguńii or mutative. Due to the greater crudeness in the mutative principle, the Rajoguńii mind is more partial to crude activities than the sattvic one. Such mutative people are popularly considered to be of the Kśatriya Varńa or warrior temperament, possessing energy and valour. The sentient principle is cognitive, and the mutative principle is energetic. Vaeshyavarńa, the temperament of the business class is concerned with activities much cruder than those of the Vipra and the Kśatriya. Here the Citta or the mental plate is dominated by yellow vibrations, which are created by the combined influence of the mutative and static principles.
Those whose Citta is predominately influenced by the static principle, naturally possess a greater degree of inertness than others: they have neither the knowledge of the sentient persons nor the valour of the mutative ones nor the capacity for activating things of those dominated by the mutato-static principles. This static inertness or crudeness is black. Those whose minds are predominately black are popularly known as shúdras or the labour class. Thus all the colours are related to one’s mental waves, and according to these waves a person is called a Brahmin, Kśatriya, Vaeshya or Shúdra. But it should be emphasized that any person can achieve Vipravarńa by means of Sádhaná (spiritual practice). In order to change the form and colour of the vibrations, it is necessary to change the mental tendency. From the Puránas we know that the King Vishvámitra was a Kśatriya in the early part of his life, but he attained Bráhminic qualities through Sádhaná. Lord Krśna’s father, Vasudeva, was a kśatriya. His relative Nanda of Gokul, was a Vaeshya for he earned his living through dairy farming. Still another of his relatives, Garga Muni, who christened Krśńa was a Vipra…
The attraction between one object and another is always chromatic, pertaining to rága or colour. The word rága is derived from the root rańj which means “dyeing”. Anurága means to dye one’s mind with the colour of that Infinite Entity. Nothing will result from dyeing one’s clothes with saffron colour only for show. Dye yourself within…
Dye your mind with His colour. Those who have not done so cannot attain Him, for this very coloration is Prema or Divine Love. The differences in colour are signs of distinction; without these differences there is identity…
That is why I say that you must bring about a revolutionary change in the flow of your judgment and thought, and see how, after overcoming your fascination with external colour, your mind becomes tinged with the His glorious colour. In Ananda Marga Sadhana, the method of withdrawing the mind from degrading tendencies, and absorbing oneself in the colour of the Great, is called Pratyáhára Yoga (the yoga of withdrawal) or Varńárghyadána (the offering of colours). All people have a particular attraction for one or another object or activity and as soon as they become attracted to an object, then their minds become coloured with the colour of that object. You can withdraw your mind from the colour of that object and dye yourself in His colour by offering Him the captivating colour of the object that has attracted you: this is the real Pratyáhára Yoga. The word Pratyáhára means “to withdraw” – to withdraw the mind from its object…
When this practice of offering your own colours – your own attachments, becomes natural and easy, you will then merge in Him. Then you will have no need for any colour, for you will become colourless – you will go beyond the reach of any colour. Your unit-ego will become one with the Cosmic Ego. Whichever way you look you will see only Him in His ever-surging glory.” (Vibration, Form and Colour)
“You know, so far as people’s mental condition is concerned, one person is a shúdra, another person is a vaeshya, another a kśatriya, another a vipra and still another a sadvipra. People are classified as above according to their mental fitness, not according to complexion or birth. It has been clearly stated by Lord Krśńa that varńa [mental colour, psychological type] is decided not according to birth but according to action and attribution – Cáturvarńyaḿ mayá srśt́aḿ guńakarma vibhágashah – “According to guńa and karma (attribution and action) it is decided.”
Everybody wants happiness, and this desire for happiness has enabled humans to come in contact with dharma (sublime righteousness) and to discover dharma. They have not invented dharma, they have only discovered it, because dharma was there before the creation of the human being. Humans cannot invent it, humans can only discover it. Its presence, maybe, was unknown to humans in the beginning.
Tasmáddharma sadákarya sarvavarńae prayatnatah. So for all varńas, whether a person is mentally a shúdra or a vaeshya or a kśatriya or a vipra – Dharma is a must.” (Jaeva Dharma and Bhágavata Dharma)
“What is colour (varńa)? Colour is the external manifestation of the inner self. Within your existential reality, there are countless hues and colours. Suppose a person’s body emits a green glow or colour. The manifestation of green colour indicates that he is a person of scintillating intellect. Another person emits red. That red colour is the outer manifestation of cruelty. Every colour indicates a characteristic idea, psychic tendency or propensity. But that Reality, the Supreme Reality is devoid of any colour; He has no colour because He, Himself, is the Creator. So I say that He is colourless (avarńa) – He has no colour. He transcends all colours.
In the language of social psychology people with awakened intellect and the so-called intelligentsia and vipras are all of white colour [psychic colour]. The colour of the kśatriya(2) is red. vaeshyas are of yellow colour and shúdras are known for having a black aura. Everything comes within the spectrum of colours, thus this social system is known as varńa vyávasthá. However, we have nothing to do with such caste discrimination. Only the mental colour should be the object of our consideration, neither the external colour nor the caste. Parama Puruśa transcends colour. He has no colour; He is beyond the domain of colour. Everything created and made by Him, is colourful but He Himself is beyond colour.
Varńáshramábhimánena shrutidásye bhavennarah;
Varńáshrama vihiinasca varttate shrutimúrdhańi.
[Those who proudly espouse the caste system are slaves of the Vedas, while those who have risen above it or kicked it aside, attain a place above the Vedas.]
Those who are bound by the fetters of caste, that is, those who accept caste while dependent on Parama Puruśa or the Creator, remain confined by innumerable mundane and psychic bondages. One who is above this caste discrimination, above the fetters of casteism, is indeed successful. Such a person is unique and beyond colour (eko avarńo).” (The Supreme Entity Transcends All Colours)
“The more human beings are established in Neohumanism, the more they will be absorbed in the colours of their inner minds instead of the colours of the external world…Rather, by offering all their psychic colours to the Supreme Consciousness, they will become more concerned with their mental colours than with the external ones.
This intensely close proximity to the Supreme is the real Vrindavana [place in northern India where Lord Krsna revealed the sweetness of divine love], the Vrindavana of the mental world – the state of absolute mental purity. It is natural for human beings to become soiled with dust in the course of their journey in the physical world. But this is not to continue forever. They should make their minds completely unblemished by offering all their mental colours to the Supreme. Forgetting the external aspect of the play of colours, they should accept the internal colour-play as the ultimate in human life – and thus establish themselves in the true Vrindavana, the Supreme Desideratum of human life.” (Inner Asset)
“O children of Ánanda Márga, you have to rise above the caste-differentiations and attain a state beyond the attributes. You must not aspire to be the white-coloured vipra, the blood-red-coloured Kśatriya, the blood-and-black-coloured, i.e., yellow-coloured vaeshya or the dark-coloured shúdra. You have to rise above all these. To attain the state beyond the attributes, you have to meditate on Puruśa, reflect on your universality and know your original form. In the beginning, you have to become the white-coloured vipra. Then you will have to shake off the vipra feeling and finally merge into the Cosmic Consciousness which is free from all colours.” (Evolution of Society)
Next: Social Cycle
Vipras and Religion
Women in the Vipra Age
Resistance to Vipra Exploitation
Vaeshya Exploitation of Vipras
Good Aspects of Vaeshyas
Women Under Vaeshyas
Vaeshya Exploitation in India Today
Conclusion on Varna
Duty of Sadvipras
Obstacles to Revolution
Requirements for Nuclear Revolution