Q . The excavation at Keeladi has created another political controversy in India. In this context, comment on the significance of the excavation and the life of Thiruvalluvar. (10 marks, 150 words, GS-1, Modern History)
- Thiruvalluvar, commonly known as Valluvar, was a celebrated Tamil poet and philosopher. He is best known as the author of Tirukkural.
- Tirukkural is comprised of 133 sections of 10 couplets each is divided into three books: Aram (virtue), Porul (government and society), and Kamam (love).
- He is regarded as a cultural and moral icon for Tamils across caste and religious lines.
- The period when he lived is debated, as is his religious identity. Some place him in the third or fourth century; others put him in the eighth or ninth.
- In A History of Tamil Literature, Mu. Varadarajan concluded that Thiruvalluvar should have “practised religious eclecticism, maintained unshakeable faith in dharma but should have rejected religious symbols and superstitious beliefs”.
- He “neither mentioned his religion and caste nor his place of birth and language” in any of the verses.
- He had not “emphasised his ideas about a particular religion or ritual”.
- In A History of South India (Fourth Edition), K.A. Nilakanta Sastri was emphatic in saying that “the author was most probably a learned Jaina divine and his close acquaintance with the works of Manu, Kautilya and Vatsyayana is unmistakable”.
- He has influenced a wide range of scholars down the ages since his time across the ethical, social, political, economic, religious, philosophical, and spiritual spheres.
- He has long been venerated as a great sage, and his literary works a classic of Tamil culture.
- He opposed Caste System.