I have come to the conclusion that the caste system is endemic to India. It’s not an aberration; it’s what defines society. And it’s spread across all religions – a Dalit is a Dalit, whether Hindu, Christian or Muslim.
Joseph Campbell observes, “in the old agrarian societies there were primarily four classes of human beings: four social strata” – but only in India has this solidified into so rigid a structure. He believes this might be related to the concept of reincarnation. However, as you note, Nandu, the caste system is not confined to any one religion, but is how society is organized.
What do you think is the difference between the Indian subcontinent and the civilizations of Sumer, Akkad, and so many others that shared essentially the same social divisions?