03 October 2014
posted by Salman Rashid @ 12:00 AM,
- At October 3, 2014 at 10:02 AM, Muhammad Imran Saeed said...
So we are converted agriculturists as an escape from the sub-class or caste opression. Well I can live that, but we as a nation seem to be resilient towards this arab 'brotherhood'
- At October 3, 2014 at 6:51 PM, omarali50 said...
Sir ji, your knowledge of history far exceeds mine and I wonder if you have read any good accounts of how and when conversions actually took place? I am leery of this common theme (perhaps mentioned lightly and in passing in your article and not meant to be taken as gospel truth) that "our lower caste ancestors converted to escape caste oppression" case too. It seems converts came from all castes (Iqbal even claimed to be a Brahmin, though some have their doubts) and in the parts of India where caste oppression was truly horrible, most of the lower castes seem to have remained Hindu. It seems to me it is far more likely that conversion was due to a mix of factors:
1. Benefits. The new Turko-Afghan rulers were Muslims. Many of their local partners were not. Some of those local partners remained Hindus, but others thought it may be more profitable to become Muslim, and conversion in these cases would start at the top. As the Jagirdar or Sardar converted, so did his ryaya.
2. Conversions via saints. This need not be to "escape caste oppression". Admiration, active mureedi and worship of local saints was an ancient phenomenon. Now some of the local holy men happened to be Sufi saints from central Asia (and later, from among local converts). Their followers could and did switch religions to honor their saint, to thank God for a son, on recovery from illness and so on (like AR Rahman in the 20th century). This would be simply a continuation of age-old ways of dealing with saints and divine agents, not necessarily a "political decision".
3. By force. After all, many massacres were carried out by invading forces (though since invaders were outnumbered many times over by peasants, the percentage exposed to invader swords was always going to be low...keep in mind that peasants always outnumber nomadic invaders by several orders of magnitude...getting in their way was mostly bad luck or a matter of being in major cities) and in many cases the locals were given the option of conversion or death. Some opted for death, others must have opted for conversion.
4. Must also keep in mind that local culture treated religion a bit differently than the Mleccha invaders. Our own religious tradition is syncretic and polyglot. One more religion in the mix was not a big deal to most people (though later they may have realized that this particular import is different). So "conversion" is not necessarily the psychological exercise it would be in today's day and age.
5. This "escaping caste oppression" meme does sound too modern and left-wingish to me. So much that i suspect it has more to do with the expectations and worldview of the history writers and intellectuals of the left-leaning 20th century historical milieu and less to do with what actually happened in 1535.
And finally, i also think a lot of this ancestor mongering has become more common in the last 100 years as religious boundaries have become more modern (and in this sense, Islam itself would be more "modern" than our ancestral religious traditions).
And so on.
But I am happy to be corrected....
- At October 3, 2014 at 7:00 PM, Faisal said...
For your information its not only Arabs that people want to descend from but many other invaders as well..Turks ,Mongols,Persians etc.I too got DNA tested and I belong to Kipchak Turks classification from Kazakhistan.
- At October 3, 2014 at 8:20 PM, Nayyar Julian said...
No, I dont bother. I am me.
- At October 3, 2014 at 8:36 PM, said...
Every one wants to know the shajra e nassab
- At October 3, 2014 at 10:13 PM, Bilal Haque said...
Wonder why no one claims proudly that they are descended from dark Tamils. A lot of racism associated with this phenonnemon
- At October 4, 2014 at 6:44 AM, said...
DNA test involving Y chromosome only measures the genetic mutations which happen in 1000-10000 year range. They can tell general region where the mutation happened. Women's DNA test also same kind of mechanism on mDNA.
If you look at 20 generation of average 25 years = 500 years.
That means 2^20 people have contributed to your DNA in 500 years
which is 1,048,576 individuals.
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