Saturday, October 08, 2016

The Laws of Manu


NewModeloftheUniverse |  Further, the Laws of Manu relating to marriage are full of deep significance and therefore probably they are completely distorted. In his teaching concerning marriage Manu undoubtedly speaks of what happens or may happen as the result of a wrong union of people of different castes, that is, people who are different in their inner nature. And he specially emphasises those negative effects which result from the union of men of a higher inner development, men of the " higher castes ", with women of an inferior development, of the " lower castes ", or similarly, from the union of women of the higher castes with men of the lower castes. A Brahman must marry a Brahman woman. That is the principle. There must be equality in marriage. In an unequal marriage the lower brings the higher down to his own level. This is especially disastrous for women and their posterity.

The idea is that the sex instinct, both in man and in woman, and especially in woman, is the instinct of selection, the instinct of search for the best. To seek the best is the task which nature has imposed on the sex instinct. A sex instinct which does not answer this requirement does not fulfil its purpose. Degeneration inevitably results if instead of looking for the best and the strongest, the sex instinct either becomes indifferent or is drawn towards the worst and the weakest.

It is to the woman, because of her special properties, that is, because of her " instinctivity " and emotionality, that the chief role in upholding the higher properties of the race belongs. On her instincts, on her choice, depends the protection of the quality of the race. If these instincts act, the race remains on a definite level; if the instincts do not act, the race inevitably declines and degenerates. A woman who could choose a stronger and better man, but gives herself to a weak or inferior man for some kind of external consideration, or because of an inner perversion or loss of a right valuation of her own feelings, commits the greatest crime against nature. The worst possibility is the marriage of a Brahman woman with a Sudra. A Kandala, the lowest kind of man, is born from such a union.

But a right understanding and a right application of the Laws of Manu demand a very high development in men. It is quite clear that the ordinary " human " understanding could not help establishing hereditary castes. Did right castes ever exist? Did the order which Manu teaches ever exist? How can we tell? Did true Christianity ever exist? We understand perfectly well that historical " Christianity ", in any case the greater part of it, is nothing but a distortion of the ideas of Christ and the Gospels. And it is quite possible that the Laws of Manu also in their true form and in their totality were never carried out in life.

Division into castes represents an ideal social organisation in accordance with esoteric systems. The reason for this lies, of course, in the fact that it is a natural division. Whether people wish it or not, whether they recognise it or not, they are divided into four castes. There are Brahmans, there are Kshatriyas, there are Vaisyas, and there are Sudras. No human legislation, no philosophical intricacies, no pseudosciences and no forms of terror can abolish this fact. And the normal functioning and development of human societies are possible only if this fact is recognised and acted on. All theories and all attempts at forcible reform based either on the principle of hereditary castes, or on the principle of " equality ", or on the principle of the supremacy of the proletariat and the struggle against hereditary castes, are equally useless, and all alike only make the situation of humanity worse. And at the same time actually, historically, humanity knows nothing else. There are only two ways for it—either hereditary castes and despotism, or struggle with hereditary castes and despotism. All the fluctuations of the history of humanity occur between these two ways. The third way, that is, the right division of castes, is shown, but humanity has never, to our knowledge, followed this way, and there are no grounds for thinking that it will ever turn into this way.

In modern life there are no tendencies leading towards a right division of castes. There is not even any idea of such a division, and there cannot be such an idea, because the understanding of the right division of castes was forgotten long before the beginning of our civilisation.

But even an accidental approach to a right division into castes immediately gives a result which lights up history for many centuries afterwards.

All the most brilliant periods of history, without exception, were periods in which the social order approached the caste system, but in which the principle of hereditary castes either was already weakening or had not yet become firm enough. Such were the brightest periods in the history of Greece and Rome, such was the epoch of the " Renaissance ", such was the 18th century in France and such was the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century in Russia. These approaches were accidental and imperfect, therefore they did not last long and ended in catastrophes; and usually, the higher the rise went, the deeper and more real was the fall. After such a fall people are not willing for a long time to believe that the epoch of rise has passed and will not return again; and they seldom wish to understand that the very evil of the preceding period, that is, division between the classes of society, was the cause of the rise and growth of the culture.

It is remarkable that an approach to a division into castes is almost always accompanied in history by one and the same phenomenon, namely, by the formation of an independent " intelligentsia ". The formation of an " intelligentsia " is the beginning of the gathering together of people of higher castes, people who are not yet conscious of themselves and do not understand themselves, but who, nevertheless, act in accordance with the principles of their dimly felt caste. The characteristic features of the " intelligentsia" are always and everywhere the same. First there is a craving for disinterested activity, then a very impatient feeling of the indispensability of personal freedom for all and a very rebellious attitude towards everyone and everything standing in the way of freedom of thought, speech and individual manifestation. In the conditions of modern life, that is, amidst all the absurdities of the present order of things, the " intelligentsia " becomes naturally revolutionary. It is very difficult to imagine the conditions in which the " intelligentsia " could be peaceful and loyal or constructing anything outside the sphere of science and art. In the conditions of modern life the " intelligentsia " is a destructive element. But the vagueness of its caste feeling and the vagueness of its understanding of aims and means, of friends and enemies, create the fundamental errors of the " intelligentsia ". It is carried away by Utopian theories of the common good and often finds that it has itself to serve the lower castes and be guided by their desires. Renouncing in this way its birthright the " intelligentsia " falls into the power of the " outcastes " and, becoming an instrument in their hands, begins unintentionally to serve their interests. Acting in this way the " intelligentsia " loses the meaning of its existence and the elemental forces aroused by it turn against it. This is exactly what happened in Russia with the most tragic consequences not only for the " intelligentsia " itself but chiefly for the " people " whom the " intelligentsia " strove to " liberate."

These tragic results of the " liberating movement " to which the intelligentsia gave its leadership, sympathy, and support, are explained by the appearance, immediately after the intelligentsia, of two new classes of contemporary society—the "pseudo-intelligentsia" and the " semi-intelligentsia." 

These two classes represent outcaste formations and are, so to speak, refuse from the process of the formation of the intelligentsia. Like all outcaste formations the " pseudo-intelligentsia " and the " semi-intelligentsia " contain a very large percentage of the criminal element and, in general, sympathise with the criminal, are interested in the criminal and are ready at any moment to become criminal themselves, especially (the pseudo-intelligentsia) if it does not offer much danger.

But having no value of any kind, cither moral or intellectual, these two new classes are very strong in numbers in modern life and power naturally passes into their hands (that is, into the hands of the pseudo-intelligentsia) when it falls from the hands of the old governments. In order to preserve this power they are ready to sacrifice anything and first of all the very " people " in whose name the intelligentsia carried on its struggle.

The intelligentsia cannot foresee this and even does not understand it after it has already happened because it does not understand itself and does not understand its role and the weakness of its theories.
Theories have played and they still play an unusually big role in the life of modern society. People have believed and many believe till now that they will be able to alter and reconstruct the whole life of humanity with the help of theories or by following theories. At no time in history have theories played such a role as at the present time, or, to speak more correctly, during the period immediately preceding the present time. Its faith in theories is the cardinal sin of the " intelligentsia ". The " pseudo-intelligentsia ", outwardly imitating the " intelligentsia ", also bases itself on theories but it does not idealise its theories, on the contrary it introduces a great deal of sophistry into them and makes them the means of personal adaptation to life.