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Chandala
Chandala
is a Sanskrit
Sanskrit
word for someone who deals with disposal of corpses, and is a Hindu
Hindu
lower caste, traditionally considered to be untouchable.[1][2]

Contents

1 Classification 2 See also 3 References 4 Further reading 5 External links

Classification[edit] Varna was a hierarchical social order in ancient India, based on the Vedas. Since the Vedic corpus constitute the earliest literary source, it came to be seen as the origin of caste society. In this Brahmanical view of caste, varnas were created on a particular occasion and have remained virtually unchanged. In this ordering of society, notions of purity and pollution were central, and activities were delineated in this context. Varna divides the society into four groups ordered in a hierarchy; beyond these, outside the system, lies a fifth group known as the untouchables, of which the Chandala
Chandala
became a constituent part.[3] According to an account, the Adi Sankaracharya
Adi Sankaracharya
met a Chandala
Chandala
in Varanasi, with his dogs by his side.[4]A disciple of Sankara asked Chandala
Chandala
to stand aside. The Chandala
Chandala
reponded "O guru! You preach Advaita Vedanta and yet you make a distinction between man and man. Is Advaita only preached and not practised? Sankara was surprised to hear the Chandala.[5] In modern Indian usage, Chandal is a general derogatory slur used to refer to a filthy, mean or low person.[1][6] See also[edit]

Burakumin Namasudra

References[edit]

^ a b Viswanath, Rupa (2014). The Pariah Problem: Caste, Religion, and the Social in Modern India. Columbia University Press. p. 268. ISBN 978-0-23116-306-4.  ^ Jha, Ashok Kumar (2013). Meghadutam. PartridgeIndia. p. 101. ISBN 978-1-48289-494-3.  ^ Thapar, Romila (2004). Early India: From the Origins to AD 1300. University of California Press. pp. 63, 511. ISBN 978-0-52024-225-8.  ^ Bhaja Govindam of Sri Sankara, A. V. Suryanarayana, 1975, p. 3 ^ Sarama and Her Children, Bibek Debroy, Penguin UK, 2008 ^ Biswas, A. K. (2000). The Namasudras of Bengal: profile of a persecuted people. Blumoon Books. p. viii. Though he is physically almost practically unknown, save and except in Bengal, calling someone a Chandal is the ultimate insult and humiliation of a Hindu
Hindu
anywhere under the sun. 

Further reading[edit]

Anna Dallapiccola, Dictionary of Hindu
Hindu
Lore and Legend, ISBN 0-500-51088-1

External links[edit]

Chanadalas amongst Sinhalese in Sri Lanka Matanga Jataka Jataka Pali No.497

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