Have you watched Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Bullet Raja? Nothing to miss if you haven’t watched, except that this was probably the first movie where the protagonists were celebrating being a Brahman by caste.
You see, Brahmanism is in abundance in academic discourses in India, mostly negative, like Brahmanism, Sanskritisation that famous sociological theory, is basically Brahmanisation.
But do you remember any Bollywood movie where the word Brahman as a caste (as a jaati, characteristics) was referred in a celebratory mode, the way it was used in Bullet Raja?
Remember, dialogues in Bullet Raja, that goes like Brahmin agar bhukha to Sudama …aur rootha to Ravan… In a way it was celebrating the idea of being a Brahman.
If you remember in 70s and 80s Bollywood created something called sachha musalman; “ek saccha musalmaan kabhi jhoot nahi bolta…”they will invariably read kalma before dying!!
I haven’t heard anything like ek tapswi Brahmin or ek tejswi Brahmin or Brahmin ka shraap; whereas if you read any basic mythologies of India, Brahmin ka shraap is present there in abundance.
Jabki Abla ka shrap, gareeb kee aah se Bollywood bhara pada hai…
Raajput ke aan aur shaan pe bhi pachaso movies hain… like Rajtilak, Dharamveer, Rajput, Kshatriya and many other movies…
But Brahman has been conspicuously absent in popular discourse…
Last I heard Brahman in a movie was in Gangs of Wasseypur II, remember, that kathal buying scene of Sultan before he was shot dead; where the guy on phone was saying, Brahmin logo ka meat hota hai na bhaiyya Kathal !!
Actually one of my friends called me after watching Bullet Raja saying shayad pehli baar Brahmin ka naam public domain me is tarah se khuleaam aaya hai.
How is to feel like a born Brahman.
I have rubbed many of mt friends in wrong way by claiming that I feel a kind of constant spiritual high, you know a sense of some sort of piousness, a pavitrata about my body and this is not something that comes by constant working on your body or bathing regularly but just by being born as a Brahman !!
I know it pinches if you are not Brahman, but what if you are a Brahman!!
Can one be proud of being born as a Brahman or is it vulgar to celebrate something like that, like I believe it is considered upstart if you flash being born rich?
Have I got anything by being Brahman ? Something in material terms….
Remember, Siddhartha by Herman Haze!! What does he say when Siddhartha, a Brahman, is asked what can you do? He says..
I can fast, I can think, I can wait…
Obviously I can think like everyone can. Can I wait? I am not sure!!
But I can definitely fast. I am not talking about starving. I am saying fasting!
I think at personal level, I have got this fasting thing by being a Brahman.
Most of the people around me, I see, they can’t skip meals!! Student come late in the first class and says Sir! Breakfast late se mila tha!!
I see people going crazy if they don’t get their daily meal on time.
I have seen, not in my family, thankfully, mother waking up their child if they sleep before eating, beta kuch khaa lo, aur beta bhi uth ke khaa heen leta hai!!
Friends asking me mera khana rakhwa dena if they go for late night movies!! Like God knows what will happen if they won’t eat dinner for a night or don’t have breakfast one morning!
They are constantly starving! You see fasting doesn’t make any sense if you feel hungry!!
So am I someone who hates food? No! A resounding No!!
On the contrarily I am someone, (may be another Brahmanical trait??), I am fond of good food. But it doesn’t matter to me if I have to skip meals for a whole day, two days, three days. Three days, I have done, I have survived without eating and nothing happens!
So learn to fast!!