Sanatan Sanskriti is the oldest in the world. We had been following traditions and culture which were derived from our four Vedas, “The Rigveda”, “The Yajurveda”, “The Samaveda” and “The Atharvaveda”. These are generally called as Chaturvedas containing the whole philosophy about the human being, nature, animals and the universe. There is nothing in this universe which you can’t see and understand from these manuscripts, written by the great Maharishi Ved Vyas. The surname called Chaturvedi- a person having knowledge of all the four Vedas, Trivedi- a person having knowledge of three Vedas, Dwivedi- a person having knowledge of two Vedas, are derived in this manner.
The allegation of following casteism on Hinduism is absolutely false and it was a dirty mind game of some selfish persons. Whatever is being, shown to us today in various movies, TV serials depicting our ancestors as caste conscious is not correct. Our culture and tradition is very rich and it always recognized the Karma theory, which means the persons were known by their work/ karma and not by any caste. The caste system which we are following today has been created by us only and not by our Sanatan Sanskriti. At that time, the persons used to be known by their Karma and that’s why they were called as Chaturvedi, Trivedi, Dwivedi. It was not a caste but it was their qualification by which they were known. Later on, due to our foolishness we started calling their descendants also by same qualification, whether they had it or not. Another example is surname “Sood”. Basically, Sood means interest. Persons who used to lend money to others on interest were called sood.
Even today, we recognize a locality by the type of business being carried on there and name it accordingly, e.g. Sarafa Bazar, Sabji Mandi, Loha Mandi and alike. So, the area is known by the nature of work carried out there. In some cases, localities are known by castes but again the castes are derived from the nature of work the person used to do. The caste system came into being because we started knowing the person by the name of his father instead of his Karma. Slowly it became surname even if the person is not doing that Karma. With the spread of education, awareness and available opportunities people started doing jobs/ businesses other than ancestral work but were known by their old Karma, i.e. ancestral work which became surname, to put it in easy language.
Education system was Gurukul based. It was not as shown in various movies. Everyone was allowed to get education without any difference of caste or creed because at that time no such system was followed. If you check out the names of old rishis or saints, their names are today referred to as gotras of their descendants. They did not have surnames. They were known by the qualifications they had earned. Many such rishis became king and many kings became rishis. Glaring example is Rishi Bhagirath ji who was from Ikshwaku family of Lord Rama and brought Ganga (The holy river) on earth and Maharishi Valmiki ji.
Some powerful, foolish and corrupt people misinterpreted the traditions and those wrongful interpretations started spreading slowly. Since, human beings are born selfish, so they started interpreting the traditions which suited them best and also to prove their supremacy over and above the other people. The population was less and the villages were located too far from each other. Every village used to have one or two persons who got education from gurukul. Such persons used to tell the villagers about the traditions, whatever pleased them, and their misinterpretation proved detrimental for all the villagers because there was no other person to correct them. With the passage of time such wrongly interpreted rituals became tradition of those villages and the powerful person of other villages started following them because it suited them the most.
This is how the wrong rituals started spreading and in long term were called as traditions. Various traditions which were made with scientific reasoning, e.g. the tradition of taking bath or getting all the family members bald after coming from last rites, washing hands and face in day-to-day life after reaching home and so on & so forth, were called as traditions of brahmins only whereas these were applicable to all the families in society. During old days, there were fewer medical facilities and contagious diseases were more prevalent, so these traditions were made with logic and reasoning but as time passed, people discarded these traditions as being orthodox and conservative. People used to keep distance from person who came to pick up garbage but later on it was termed as untouchability. Please tell me whether you take bath after cleaning your toilet? I know, yes. Similarly, the reason to keep distance was due to unhygienic and dirty work and not due to person’s caste.
Now, you can easily understand the scientific and logical reasons behind our traditions as during the pandemic of COVID 19 we are following the same protocol of our old sanatan traditions. Casteism is the byproduct of some handful people, who propogated it to establish their supremacy above other persons and also for their vested interests and it is being carried on till today after so many centuries.