Notes on Antique Decor & Ethnic Fashion | Wovensouls Art Gallery

The Lives of Brahmins

In general there has been a lot of Brahmin-bashing in the media and I myself have had mixed opinions about the subject with a tinge of negativity. In my circles the perception is that most brahmins have a superiority complex and that when the topic of discussion is caste, they are intolerably cocky. So my personal view has been a bit irreverent to this lot. But I have had to re-examine my views based on something I read.

Recently I read a article that pointed out the following: Brahmins have never been wealthy. They have never been rulers. They have never lived in palaces. They lived off the donations of others. Their community duties lay mainly in religious and intellectual domains. They were always respected even though they had little money & frugal lives.

And so I find myself reading about the Brahmins.

On the online-page of the Rare Book Society of India I came across this book: “Sundhya – The Daily Prayers of Brahmins”. A few pictures that they have posted from that book showcase a slice of Brahmin life:



10530923_10152615250246675_1458224798579687401_n 10538569_10152620293886675_7438907226091250723_n 10562981_10152615625336675_6151272900228921552_n10599249_10152620316251675_4292087124483601185_n

These sketches remind me of that article – that the Brahmins did not pursue an opulent lifestyle.

Makes me wonder : JUST HOW did the transformation in perceptions of the others come about? How did  this group  go from being perceived as “frugal” “ascetic” “intellectuals” to being perceived as “elite” & “high & mighty”?!


Aug 2014

[ From the book –
The Sundhya or the Daily Prayers of the Brahmins.
Illustrated in a series of original drawings from nature, demonstrating their attitudes and different signs and figures performed by them during the ceremonies of their morning devotions, and likewise their poojas.

Reprint Available on

Source : Rare Book Society of India]

By wovensouls

By Jaina Mishra

I'd love to hear your view on this. Please comment below:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


This entry was posted on August 24, 2014 by in Culture Kaleidoscope and tagged , , , , , , .

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 5,175 other followers





%d bloggers like this: