History of Indian Civilization essay

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History of Indian Civilization


Indian civilization is more than 5,000 years old. We have assimilated many cultures, races, warriors and marauders during this short time span. The Vedas, the Puranas and the Upanishads were written here. The spiritual knowledge was imparted by India to the world.

Indian society and civilization was regarded as the best during ancient times. So much so, foreigners used to visit the Indian subcontinent to study in reputed Indian universities. There was no poverty or starvation. There were many grades of prosperity among the masses. The entire Indian subcontinent had been divided into many kingdoms. These kingdoms had their own laws and regulations. The social customs were guided by religion and by the kingdom. Every citizen was happy and peaceful. There were wards for land jewellery and woman but the decision was taken in a few hours or in a few days. People were farmers, Tool makers, warriors, members of royal families (Samantas and Sipahsalars) and the ordinary traders. There were caste-based and religion based bards. But overall social fabric was healthy and strongly knit.

Then came the Huns, the Pathans, the Pakhtoons and the Persians. The Aryans established the Vedic empire. Vedic civilisation is the glorious chapter in Indian history. The Indian subcontinent became the apple of world’s eye during this period.

Many races, including those of the Europeans, intermingled with the Indian Society. The Mughals arrived in 1527 A.D. when the medieval period was at its peak.

Religion was a dominant force during the medieval period. The preachers like Surdas, Guru Nanak, Bhagat Kabir, Tulsidas and a host of Sufi poets impinged upon the society with their devotion, spiritualism and divinity.

At the end of the medieval period, the invasions of the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British started. Sir Thomas Roe visited the court of Emperor Jahangir and East India Company spread its empire in India in the post-Jahangir era. The Dutch, the French and the Portuguese came here for a brief period but failed to continue here. The Britishers were ultimately able to create an empire which ruled India for 350 years. The British were impressed by our spiritualism, simple living styles and knowledge whereas we appreciated their courage, loves for their nation and discipline. There were many battles and two world wars. The British tried to develop India through a network of administrative capitals, road, rail and telephone networks.

The able leadership of M.K. Gandhi helped Indians to attain freedom in 1947. We learned many a lesson from the Britishers and their long rule left many imprints on our bureaucracy, efficiency, national fabric and social milieu.

The post-independence society did not have an influence of the West. Political parties were respected. There were international level leaders like J.L. Nehru, M.K. Gandhi, D.N. Nauroji, Abul Kalam Azad, Sardar Patel, J.P. Narain and Morarji Desai. Indian social structure was definitely nationalistic despite of the partition, bloodshed and many communal riots.

The influence of Western Culture were witnessed in Indian Society during early seventies. By the end of seventies, there influences manifested themselves in the form of discos, drugs, violence and communal riots. During the early eighties, the joint family concept gave way to the nuclear family concept. Education was made pre-dominantly vocational and money was the chief motive for working and struggling in the urban areas. The rural folk migrated to the cities. The green revolution and white revolution gave power to the masses and the neo-rich class demanded more rights from the State. Technology expanded its wings and commercialism was on the rise.

The nineties saw the complete revolution of cable TV. Satellite TV, Internet operation, E-mail and E-com in Indian subcontinent. Indian society moved towards the negative Western influences easily.

The influences of the West are at their peaks and most of them have taken the Indian culture and civilization on the wrong foot. The institution of family is dying a slow death. Electronics, telecommunications and software are the latest technologies which are like to dominate the Indian Society.

The next millennium would hold Information Technology (IT) as its supreme mentor. But we must not forget our Ancient Civilization.

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