Christianity is believed to have come to Kerala in the first century AD when the Apostle Thomas, like other disciples, ventured near and far to spread the gospel in accordance with Christ’s command. There has been some speculation that the reason why St Thomas came to Kerala had less to do with converting the “locals” and was more to do with trying to convert the sizable Jewish population who lived in Kerala especially in Cochin. These Jews assimilated into the community though they continued to maintain their own faith and customs. They were welcomed and, unlike in many other countries, have never been the victims of persecution while living in India – a testament to the receptiveness of the Hindus who lived in Kerala and were willing to receive people of a different faith. Today there is still a centuries old synagogue in Cochin and a handful of Jewish families but most emigrated to Israel over the years because of better economic opportunities.

How successful St Thomas was in converting the Jews is not known but it is generally believed that he converted several prominent Brahmin families and these conversions together with others is the genesis of the Syrian Christians who live in Kerala and elsewhere around the world.

I write about this because there was a communication on a Yahoo group to which I belong consisting of mainly Asians who lived or live in East Africa. Apparently there is a debate going on in the UK about outlawing caste discrimination in Britain – yes, the old-fashioned discrimination against Dalits that is associated with India. There is opposition among some Hindu groups in Britain, to this legislation – in effect arguing that caste discrimination in the UK should not be addressed! This entire issue of seeking to achieve a “protected” status for casteism in the UK by certain Hindu groups is a whole different discussion.

But, in this context another member of the Yahoo group cited an email he received from someone known to me and several other family members which essentially said that such casteism is not just confined to Hindus and that even Christians in Kerala are guilty of the same thing.

A part of his email stated:

“But do you know Hindus are not the only ones to be blamed for this accursed practice. Even the so called upper class Christians in Kerala are guilty of this though they had given up Hinduism centuries ago claiming to have been converted by the Apostle St. Thomas!”

He went on to cite a Goan he knew from many years ago when he was a student in England who apparently asked him what caste he was. He (the Goan) claimed he was of the Brahmin caste. He goes on to say: “Wow! I was confused. My parents had never told me what caste we belonged to, not that it would have interested me in the least.”

Now, I am a Syrian Christian by birth but because of my upbringing in Mombasa, Kenya where there were only a handful of other Syrian Christian families, my involvement in the Syrian Christian faith has been minimal. However, I felt that a response was warranted to address the statements made in that email. Here is the thrust of my response:

“The email that you forwarded from S—- misstates the way that “upper class Christians”, as he puts it, classify themselves. Some of what he says does have some substance.

“I presume that by “upper class Christians” he is referring to Syrian Christians – being the descendants of those who were supposedly converted by the Apostle Thomas . In all my years, I have NEVER ONCE heard a Kerala Christian – Syrian or otherwise – referring to him/herself as belonging to so and so caste – as S—– pointed out, it would be incongruous to do so. What does happen is that the older generation talks about their antecedents and how they are descended from Brahmins, etc – incidentally such claims are not provable and are based on anecdotal information at best. Many of these claims of Brahmin antecedents are predicated on the belief that St Thomas converted several prominent Brahmin families in the first century. Some of these families are named in these anecdotes and today, if you check out the family websites of some Syrian Christian families, they claim to have descended from these converted Brahmin families. In fact, references to having come from an “ancient (Syrian Christian) family” are found so often that one wonders if there are any families left that are not ancient:)

“What Syrian Christian families frequently do is to refer to their antecedents in the context of their family names. This is pretty much the norm in conversations among them – especially the older generation – where one of the first questions asked is where one is from within Kerala and then a query as to one’s family name. The younger generation who were brought up elsewhere in India or abroad, are quite oblivious of this sort of information and often view it as being rather superfluous and inconsequential.

“My father used to say that the biggest change that had taken place in the social structure in Kerala during his years in Kenya was the diminished importance of family antecedents among Syrian Christians. It has been replaced with affluence – ie how well off is the family! He used to say it with a mixture of regret and pride – those who knew him can relate to his attitude. He was affected to his detriment by its diminished influence but he was intellectually detached enough to recognize that it meant true social progress and he used to say that it was a good thing that a form of meritocracy had taken the place of family antecedents.

“Between the high literacy rate in Kerala, the influence of the various communist governments in the state and the wholesale migration to the Gulf, there has been a non-violent social revolution which has resulted in a very limited, so called, “working class” since migrants to the Gulf send money which improves the lot of their families in Kerala enabling them not to have to do menial work. This has resulted in a flood of workers coming into Kerala from other states – especially Bihar and Tamil Nadu – to fill the vacuum left by the lack of workers in construction and other fields. In fact, the security and other hired help at the building where our flat is located in Cochin is entirely staffed by Nepalese (Gurkhas)!

“Where I do agree with S—- is that there is a pecking order here in terms of how Christians view other Christians – yes, very unchristian but it is a reality. Syrian Christians – perhaps because of their assertion and belief that they were converted by St Thomas – view themselves as a cut above other Kerala Christians. They tend to view other Kerala Christians who were either converted by the Portuguese or the missionaries with diffidence bordering on mild unspoken derision – again, quite contrary to Christian teachings. In fact, even among Syrian Christians, there is a certain amount of denominational rivalry which occasionally gets quite antagonistic. However, when it comes to marriage, denomination invariably ceases to be a factor if an eligible young man or woman appears on the scene! So, pragmatism rules when it comes to self-interest!!

“Even the example cited by S—– about the Goan who asked him about his caste, I suspect was asking him about his family’s background prior to conversion. I seem to recall the same type of exchanges on this forum by Goan Christians talking about their antecedents prior to conversion.

“Incidentally, we as a family attended an Anglican church when we were in Mombasa – the Mombasa Cathedral – because there was no Syrian Christian church in Mombasa. As a result, I personally have very little affinity with the Syrian Christian service which is long and quite formal. However those who do attend Syrian Christian churches in the DC area and in the US are quite dedicated to the welfare of the churches they attend and eager that their children imbibe some of those religious traditions. I attend a Syrian Christian service once in a while when there is a special ceremony – a baptism, memorial service, etc. In fact, when my daughter got married to an American, the service was a blend of the American church that she and her husband attend and the Syrian Christian marriage service – so there were two priests administering the rites of marriage based on the two traditions.

“One can justifiably criticize Syrian Christians about some other things but talking about which caste they belong to is not one of them!”

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118 Responses to “Christianity and caste”

  1. Peter says:

    Let me add this perspective which you have briefly referred to as a “pecking order of how Syrian(as in Keralites who recite their liturgy in Syriac) Christians view other Indian Christians”.
    It’s only in the very recent past, maybe 30+ years or so, that Syrian Christians have become more egalitarian in their outlook toward other Indian Christian denominations especially those denominations which originated because of the European missionary conversions. A point which maybe speculative since I do not have any historical evidence is that given Christianity’s thrust towards proselytizing, I wonder if at the time there would have more conversions among the Hindus, probably from the so called lower castes, since Hinduism has been ever tolerant of other faiths co-existence. What I have felt took place, again with no historical evidence to back this theory, is after the first wave of conversions/evangelism when the so called brahmin families were converted, they included not only brahmins but also everyone who worked under them, their retinue of underlings, were all converted at and it’s from their descendants we have the present day Syrian Christians. Of course family pedigree is established by pointing to one’s antecedents as belonging to the original 4 (some say 6) Brahmin families who were converted but surely 4 families could not have spawned close to 9 million of present day St.Thomas Christians. My point, we (Kerala Christians) are Nannar Jathi, those who belong to all rungs of the caste ladder however we cling on to the notion that we originated from the upper crust. However, to your point there being no formalized caste system among the Syrian Christians in Kerala, I do agree with you.

  2. TJ says:

    Thanks for offering the additional information. Your point about the retinue and underlings of the cited Brahmin families purportedly converted by St Thomas makes complete sense in accounting for the large number of Syrian Christians.

    An after-thought I had was whether the comparatively harmonious relations between Christians and Hindus in Kerala is, in part, attributable to the fact that proselytizing is something Syrian Christians have never really emphasized. If I am correct, then I wonder to what extent the increasingly active evangelical movement in Kerala will have on future inter-faith relationships. For now, the focus of the evangelicals is orimarily on other Christians but that could change.

  3. Inasu says:

    A brief intervention:1) That Thomas the Apostle came to Kerala is historically yet to be proved 2)That he converted Brahmins is an outright
    joke. He encouraged the already well settled Jewish traders on the West coast to follow Nazerene,s teachings (hence the appellation Nazraanees):they
    were scattered at several places on the Kerala coast and elsewhere. These Jewish-Christians, traders and later probably planters, mixed with the locals, multiplied and perhaps beckoned their dependants to follow their faith. They were later joined by hundreds of Jewish traders led by Thoma of
    Kaana whose followers known today as Knanaya, practising endogamy and shunning mixity, practising no conversion. Syrian Xtians do generally feel ‘superior’ vis a vis the latins and the new converts(putukristianikal). Only thing,the word caste is not mentioned,
    though for marriage, for social relationships, they do scan the caste
    origins of the people: Arundhati,s novel depicts it poignantly. TDR,s main
    protagonist (FRANCIS ITTIKKORA) puts it bluntly. Caste has been an all
    pervasive phenomenon. My objection: against its insistence on the inherited good
    or bad qualities of an individual rather than on his/her right and capacity to acquire them. Distinction by birth rather than distinction by
    hard work and efforts. Hence so much outrage among its’victims’.

  4. TJ says:

    Inasu, much of what you say is valid and has merit. To the extent that I disagree it is more with the level of emphasis implied in your comments as opposed to its thrust.

    Kerala Christians tend to be materialistic – probably more so than Kerala Hindus – and what has happened especially with the widespread emigration to the Gulf, we have had a revolution of sorts occur within Kerala society. The social underclass has become relatively well-off and with it has come a level of acceptance of their standing. Money talks – especially in Kerala!

    Even outside of Kerala (example in the US) certain professions that were looked down on in Kerala society such as nurses, have gained acceptance and respectability. So we have quite a few Kerala Christians despite their antecedents marrying nurses because their wives have earning potential in the US.

    Of course, the whole business of nurses being looked down on in Kerala – especially in years gone by – is itself ludicrous given their contribution to society. But that is a whole different subject.

    Incidentally, my grandfather, Barrister George Joseph, was prominent in fighting against discrimination and was a leader in the Vaikom Satyagraha. You can read about him here:

    http://josephclan.com/barristergjpartone.htm

  5. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    DNA SAMPLE OF JEWS.
    It has been a general misconception that Thomas of Cana brought with him 400 Jews or 72 families. In those days only men could travel by ships, especially in long voyages to unknown lands. Long before the arrival of Thoma there were Jewish colonies in Kerala. If Thomas of Cana were a Jew, he would have reported at the Jewish settlements. Jewish records do not mention anywhere that this Thomas of cana came to Kerala.
    Another misconception is that immigrants from Syria were Jews. The Bible says in Mark 7 about a woman from Syria whose daughter had an evil spirit in her . “The woman was a Gentile, born in the region of Phoenicia in Syria.” Mark 7:26. As such, if at all Thomas of Cana had come, he could not be regarded as a Jew but only as a Gentile. Portuguese and Armenian records say that Thoma was an Armenian, a Gentile.
    According to tradition, the first group of immigrants of 400 laymen led byThomas of Cana arrived at Cranganore in 345 A.D. Alexis de Menzes, Roman Catholic Archbishop, arrived at Kochi early in 1599 which subsequently led to the Synod of Diamper and the oath of Coonen Cross. The Portuguese estimates placed the number of Syrian Christians as high as 200,000 when Alexis de Menzes wanted to reform the Syrian church. How did the Syrian Christian population increase betrween 345 A.D. to 1599 A.D.? In a caste-ridden and conservative society, no Nair or Brahmin woman would have ventured to mar.ry the foreigners. In the first instance, some immigrants would have married lower caste women when they decided to settle in Kerala. Like the Arabs who married lower caste women in Malabar, Christian immigrnats and their untouchable caste wives and their offspring would have lived in the areas allotted to them by the rulers. Later they would have converted lower caste people such as fisher men (mukkuvas), slaves, barbers, washermen and other labourers (Ezhavas) with whom they had daily contacts in managing the routine affairs of their settlements. These converted untouchables and offspring of immigrants would have married among themselves to increase the Syrian Christian population. So when the Portuguese met the Syrian Christians for the first time there were more than 200,000 members.
    There was population explosion of Syrian Christans from the time CMS missionaries launched a spirited campaign to convert as many untouchables as possible. Bailey, Fenn and Baker openly accommodated the Ezhavas and outcastes in the Syrian church. In Alappuzha Norton converted a wide range of untouchables, especially Ezhavas. Hawksworth baptized Ezhavas and other outcastes in Mavelikara, Poovathoor and Kodukulanji and constructed churches for them. Hawksworth is remebered for the large sccale conversion of slaves in Mallappally. The first slave was baptized in 1851 with the name of Abel. Although Ezhava converts who had become Christians earler opposed the conversion of slaves, as years rolled by ( a period spread over 200 years ) slaves also became part of mainstream Syrian Christian population.
    Scholarly analyses and painstaking research make illogical the claim of Namboodirii descent when there were no Namboodiris in Ist century A.D. when St. Thomas visited Kerala and the further claim of Jewish descent ,ignoring the fact that Thomas of Cana was a Gentile, and not a Jew according to Armenian and Portuguese archives. In this context DNA sample taken by some persons to establish Jewish descent should be subject to scientific scrutiny. Conversely, DNA sample of Syrian Christians of Mallappally will show descent from slaves and Mavelikara descent from untouchables (Ezhavas). With education in CMS institutions, wealth from business and estates and with the freedom of social mobility even to foreign countries, Syrian Chrisdtians emerged as an aritocratic, educated and cultured community.

  6. TJ says:

    Yeshuratnam, your comments are interesting but unfortunately I don’t have the depth of knowledge to address all of the points you make. I have asked my brother who has a greater repository of historical information to respond to some of the specific points you make, if he is so inclined. But I will make two general points:

    Your comment about the dubious claims that St Thomas converted Brahmins who became the genesis of the Syrian Christian church in Kerala, is entirely valid. There is ample reason to question whether this happened for the very reasons that you cited. In fact, even the belief that Thomas came to Kerala is more based on tradition than any concrete evidence that this occurred since there is no documentary evidence to support this contention.

    Where I do take issue with your comments is in making assumptions that because Brahmins could not have been converted since they were likely non-existent in Kerala at the time, the conversions that did occur were among the lower caste people. You then proceed to say “in a caste-ridden and conservative society, no Nair or Brahmin woman would have ventured to marry the foreigners”. This is a bit of a leap …….. and absent evidence to support your contention, it seems appropriate to leave as an open question as to who was, in fact, converted.

    For me personally, it really is not a matter of being defensive about my antecedents but more an issue of being intellectually open to facts irrespective of where they lead.

  7. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    Thank you Mr T.J for seeking clarification about my comments. The claim that St.Thomas converted some Nambudiri Brahmins is contrary to historical fact, since there was no Nambudiri population when St.Thomas visited Kerala. Logan says: “The final Brahmin immigration seems to have occurred in or about the eighth century A.D. and Christian colonies had arrived in the country long before that time.” It has also been inferred that the whole of South India, including Kerala, was in the seventh century A.D. under the suzerainty of the Pallavas of Kanchi. As Prof Elamkulam says: “Legend has it that the Apostle St.Thomas landed at Malankara near Kodungallor in the 1st century, established seven churches and converted many including some Nambudiris to the new faith. The Brahmins who later became Nambudiris arrived only in the 7th. and 8th centuries. Many centuries elapsed before the term Nambudiri was evolved.” Without Nambudiri population in Kodungalloor, how could St Thomas convert Nambudiris? In the last phase of Sangam Age, Brahmins started emerging as the elite class and a large number of Brahmin settlements and temples sprang up in several pars of Kerala. The date of the introduction of Sanskrit language in Kerala helps us to trace the arrival of nambudiri Brahmins in Kerala. As Woodcock says: “During the medieval era, at a period generally thought to lie between the 8th and 11th centuries, the Nambudiri caste of Brahmins established cultural dominance in Kerala, and froze the pattern of communities into an extremely rigid and complicated form. There were no less than five hundred castes and sub-castes, divided from each other by rigorous rules against intermarriage and by an extraordinary pattern of pollution taboos.” It is quite apparent from a retrospective analysis of these events that there was no Nambudiri caste when St.Thomas came to Kerala. Even on the basis of population, there is inherent improbability in the contention that the Syrian Christians are the descendants of Nambudiri converts. During Col. Munro’s time Christians numbered about fifteen percent of the population, whereas Nambudiris amounted to not more than one percent population of Travancore. As Woodcock says: “To account for this great increase in number and for the spread of the doctrine through almost all the regions which later became the states of Cochin and Travancore, we have to assume a considerable original recruitment from the local population.” It is quite obvious that in the midst of a vast majority of local population only microscopic minority of immigrants would have come from the Middle East, and during the Portuguese period the flow of immigrants almost stopped. It becomes quite clear, therefore, that the later explosion of Syrian population was primarily due to indiscriminate conversion and accommodation of untouchables such as Ezhavas, fishermen (mukkuvas) and other lower castes by the Syrian Church. Caste hierarchy was most deep-rooted in Kerala, and only lower castes could be converted in a caste–oriented and family-oriented, rigid, conservative society. In spite of the existence of Nestorian-oriented Syrian church from 1st century and later with the advent of Catholic and Protestant missionaries, it was not possible for them to convert Brahmins, Nayars and other upper castes except one or two stray cases.

  8. Marthuma says:

    Dear Yesuratnam,
    Good observation. However some points to ponder.I also think that there are converts from the local lower caste people. Taken these facts granted, a good number of syrian christians appear to be of higher castes by their physical appearances. Also syrian christian people are one of the good looking stock in kerala . What you think about this irony?

  9. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    There are various factors for Syrians to have good physical features. When the Middle East immigrants came to Kerala as merchants and missionaries they married the illiterate, uncivilized indigenous inhabitants. Local inhabitants at that time were not Aryans but Dravidians and anthropologists believe that they belonged to Proto-Australoid or Australoid race. This admixture of races produced good looking offspring. But it was only a microscopic minority in Kerala society because Christian immigrants came from Persia and Mesopotamia only occasionally. Meanwhile, offspring of these mixed races married native Hindus and got assimilated with the local population. Other lower caste converts without any gene link with the Middle East immigrants multiplied in great numbers to avoid oppression by Nairs and other higher castes. According to Syrian Christian tradition there were about 200,000 Christians at the time of the Coonen Cross episode. Such a large number of immigrants would not have come from the Middle East and it is quite obvious that there was large scale conversion of lower castes and inter -caste marriage among converts. These pre-Portuguese period Christian lower caste converts form the nucleus which later branched off into Jacobites, CMS and Mar Thomites. As Woodcock says, “…these relatively small number of settlers cannot account for the numerous congregations which existed at the 15th century, or for the spread of Syrian Christianity into areas away from the coast, which eventually became its strongholds, such as Kottayam and Kothamangalam, where the churches are undoubtedly very ancient.” As regards the physical anthropology of Syrian Christians, most of the converts were from Ezhava and Mukkuva communities who are good looking like other higher caste Hindus. To cite an example, the former Ezhava Chief Minister, R.Sankar, was good looking like a patrician and his skin color was white. Conversely, the former Nambudiri Chief Minister, EMS Namboodiripad, was inelegant and his skin color was black. Ezhava CSI Christians of Kollam , especially Dr.Banu family, are highly cultured and their complexion is also white. Thiyya (Ezhava) girls of Malabar, especially Thalassery, are known for their beauty and physical attraction At the same time there are thousands of Syrian Christians who are black and their physical anthropology reminds us of slave or pariah origin.

  10. The most hilarious thing about this bogus Yershurathnam is that he hates the very people whom he claims to have descended from lower castes. He leaves no stone unturned to expound a lower caste ancestry for Syrians and yet in the same breathe he finds these very same set of people to be the most inimical to lower caste interests. Now this Yeshurathnam has been repeating his theories ad nauseam in all the forums unlucky enough to be graced with his presence. For him “St.Thomas and his churches” is a deviation ,he has got a massive complex about Syrians and hence want to explain away lower caste status as a result of conversions from lower stratum by missionaries and other perversities which his deranged mind can conjure up.Truly this man is an outstanding example of what a jaundiced mind with a dash of melodramatism thrown in can achieve. Caste Morons like Yeshurathnam excel in the art of finding enemies where there exists none, finding snakes where there are actually ropes. Yeshutrathnam like any usual “Syrian aggression specie “has an uncanny ability to sniff out opportunities for trouble mongering.How much more better it would have been if you had said that from now on you are not going to waste others time by forcing them to read your harangues. Stop attaching the “made in lower caste” tags to every other culture that has the slightest resemblance to it.

    It has become a modern scholarly fashion to deny anything and everything in the fields of literature and history. This tendency takes the force of a tornado when it comes to religion and Bible and the people with most HDI -human development indexes (i.e the Syrians ) and remember Kerala has an index equal to the Best country Norway which is 3 times more than the national average and 5 times the least state in india )- So one of the most developed unique specie ie the Syrians are been always been victim of debates on several threads more than any ,so its time to grow up and raise your HDI’s rather than attacking the Syrians . I don’t give a ….
    Whatever was established as absolute truth in the past centuries have become suddenly the object of much disputation and doubts. Hence we hear great scholars claiming that Moses never existed, Joshua never existed, Isaiah never existed, Hittites never existed, gospels were not written by the apostles St.Thomas never came to india ,Knanaya Thomman was not a Jew etc, etc.Its a known fact most of the Syrian documents were destroyed with the Tipp’s invasion and also due to the fact that every thing was been written on palm leaves centuries ago might have resulted in loss of clear evidences,the only remained proofs were The copper plates ,the 7 and half churches,the rock crosses”nasraney sthambams” .the letter of the pope to Villarvattom Thomas Raja are the living examples of St.Thomas and his church mission to india.
    1)Mr.Yeshuratham ,I several times stated since 300 B.C there were sacred thread wearing class in kerala who were appointed by the kings for royal debates with the rival Buddhism and Jainism ….Sangam Literature clearly speaks about this,
    According to Sangam era literary works the DRAVIDIAN society was classified into
    1.Arivars(non threaded priestly Dravidians).
    2.Ulavars/Vellalars/Karalar . or farmers.-Zamindars some local kings
    3.Aiyaar or Veduuvar-The shepherds and huntsmen
    4.Goldsmith/blacksmith/carpenters/potters .
    5.Padaichiar-military armed men.
    6.Valayar/pulayar-Fishermen & scavengers.

    The first attempt of varna implementation by
    Tolkappiyan “a Brahman(thread wearing)” in 1st to 2nd cent B.C mentions the VARNA system as per the Aryans
    1.The “threaded pandits Brahmans” were described and not describing the “arivars” or “sages”.
    2.The kings Chera,Chola,Pandya and did not mention them as warriors but kings to the second.He also doesnot describe that the kings nor the vaishyas wore the sacred thread.
    3.Also Vellalas the cultivators were refered as cultivators not the sudras.Also he states that the ones who are kings should be given the second status as kings. (Some vallalas were also local chieftains )
    4.The later even he does not mention as per the dravidian social heirarchy.(might have found no importance).
    This was the first attempt where Varna system introduction was tried by a brahman in south as per records in the 2nd to 1st century B.C . THEN HOW COME THE “NO BRAHMAN IN CHERA DYNASTY RELEVANT”????
    2)Mr Yeshurathnam from where did you get this statement —“The Brahmins who later became Nambudiris arrived only in the 7th. and 8th centuries” .Unless and until you give us any relevant referances or any evidences relating the same ,and you yourselves stated rather than copy and pasting your Suriyani Agression on blogs, also you yourself quoted that the word nambudiri is a later corruption after caste solidification,large migration of the most orthodox namboodiris happened later on but that doesn’t mean there was no namboodiris in kerala ,even the Brahmin sects differentiate themselves w.r.t the different waves of migration “even within the embranthiri or tulu Brahmins there are 2 divisions the prior migrated does not mingle with the later migrated one…also the pisharodys “the pushpaka Brahmins” are a degraded sanyasis of the namboodiri origin having a Buddhist past and were thread wearing ,also the adiyodi sect ,the elayathu sect,the nambidi sect or the nambissan sect were degraded by the namboodiri community due to their deviations in the orthodoxy retained by the namboodiris …the degradation to the pushpaka Brahmin sect happened after the domination of namboodiris in caste sytem….Namboodiri will be a general word to denote a brahman in kerala ,may be the term namboodiri was not used in the sangam period.
    3)And Mr.Yeshuratnam your claim of the population statististics ,every Syrian christian until a generation ago had 10-15 children …so your point holds no relevance.
    4)Also if a Syrian were from the ezhava or lower social stratum then never would a Syrian be allowed to do trade and business with the kings and elite classes.A Syrian was allowed to even enter a temple before the Ezhava Revolt ,some of them even were pollution nuetrilizers in Temples.The Syrian males used sacred thread and pony tail ,since the koonan cross satyam westernization and evangelization along with modern education has resulted in abolishing the same.You yourself quoted “Caste hierarchy was most deep-rooted in Kerala” then how come Syrians were given the savarna status and jobs that had closer contact with the hindu savarnas…… “if though they were from the lowest classes they would have not enjoyed the powers and prestige of an equal upper sect hindu ………
    5 )In 2001 Dr. Mini Kariappa Asst. Professor/ Professor of Anatomy & Genetics at the Jubilee Mission Medical College of Thrissur and Kolenchery College of Medicine started her herculean task to diagnose hundreds of blood samples for DNA mapping at the Hyderabad Center.When she shared her findings with me in 2005 I included a sentence about her finding that the Chitpavan Brahmins, the Tulu Brahmins, the Namboothiris and the Nazranies or Syrian Christians all have the same DNA factors i.e. those of the Jews in my paper at the 13th Triennial of the Chuch History Association of India CHAI at Goa on ASPECTS OF THE IDEA OF “CLEAN AND UNCLEAN” AMONG THE BRAHMINS, THE JEWS, AND THE ST. THOMAS CHRISTIANS OF KERALA. Her paper on her DNA experiments won for her colleague The Best Young Scientist of the World Award. Now she has presented her paper at the World Genetic Conference held at Manipal and has been published in their Journal.Recently she gave a presentation of her interesting findings at Kuravilangad inaugurated by Mr. K. M. Mani and attended by more than 700 scholars including MLAs Bishops Metropolitans &c. presided over by Prof. George Menachery.More than 500 blood samples were collected on the spot by Hyderabad scientists led by Manavendra Singh and a team of 10 nurses for free examination. Read below part of her paper which will be presented at the Platinum Jubilee and 15th Triennial Conference of CHAI the Church History Association of India 6-9 Oct. 2011 at Hyderabd

    Your claims are just claims not history anyhow Yeshurathnam .

  11. Mr.Yeshurathnam ……..Gentile is a word to denote “one who does not know or follow the path of god” and its applicable even to the “jewish” people even ,jesus have always addressed everywhere about the people of Israels in Bible.You should consider that Jesus came to re establish the Law of Moses “amongst the Jews not following the paths of God ” and not to establish Christianity …His term Gentile “refers“ even to a Jewish descent who does not walk in the ways of “Yahweh”-The Father. Learn.

  12. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    When historical facts are presented,Royal Nasrani should not lose temper and make personal attacks on scholars. There is no ‘mass complex’ as alleged by you. But you are having Nambudiri complex and that’s why you are striving hard to steal the ID cards of Nambudiris, although Nambudiri chronicles do not say that their people were converted. You have wrongly quoted me by saying that I have said that Nambudiris came only in the seventh and eighth centuries. These are the words of eminent Kerala historian, Prof. Elaqmkulam Kunjan Pillai. Let me quote: : “Legend has it that the Apostle St.Thomas landed at Malankara near Kodungallor in the 1st century, established seven churches and converted many including some Nambudiris to the new faith. The Brahmins who later became Nambudiris arrived only in the 7th. and 8th centuries. Many centuries elapsed before the term Nambudiri was evolved.” I’ve also quoted the views of Logan. You cannot distort historical facts just to buttress your fake Nambudiri descent. Even before the arrival of European powers, native Syrian church had converted many local people. Thomas Norton converted many outcastes in
    Alappuzha. Slaves liberated by missionaries such as Ragland and Hawkesworth at Mallappally were also baptized to join the mainstream of Syrian community. Ridsdale’s settlement included lower castes who were baptized to become Christians. Joseph Peet’s avowed policy was to give equal status to lower caste and outcaste converts in the Church. CMS missionaries even passed a Resolution in 1857 that converts from the slave-castes were to be given the ‘same footing as other member of the church.’ The fact that most of the Syrian Christians were from lower castes can be proved from the fact that they had to do the hard work, like other lower castes, in the paddy fields and agricultural farms of Nayars and Brahmins. In addition to this, they were forced to do compulsory duty called oozhiyam during Hindu temple festivals. As Prof. Sadasivan points out: “In 1787 poll tax was imposed on the Syrian Christians and they were already drafted for oozhiyam (gratituous or forced labour). The oozhiyam of the Syrian Christians included such duties as free supply of grass and hay to the temple cows, pounding of rice for the temples to feed the Brahmins and carrying heavy loads of faggot or fire wood for cooking in the temples. They had to do all these without murmur of protest even on Sundays and failure on their part would invoke barbaric reaction from the authorities.” Syrian Christians were not allowed to use public roads. A concrete evidence of this prohibition is “the Thiruvalla Edict” issued by dewan V. Krishna Rao. An Ezhava convert by name Cherian was abused and intimidated by Nairs for not observing the distance of pollution on the public road near a temple. Local Syrian Christian priests took up the matter of Cheriyan, with the Tahsildar and explained to him that a converted Ezhava was not bound down by the custom of his caste since he had already renounced it and become a Syrian Christian. The Tahsildar referred the matter to the dewan, V. Krishna Rao who issued a directive which was known as “the Thiruvalla Edict,” As per the Edict that “though an Ezhava becomes a Christian, he must never cease to be an Ezhava and therefore “Cherian and other converts must not be allowed to pass through the public highway by the temple.” It is quite transparent that the attempt of Syrian Christians to climb Nambudiiri or Nair bandwagon, unlike other Christians, was to camouflage their lower caste roots. God has blessed and elevated the community and even Nambudiris cannot equal the present status and prestige of Syrian Christians. Like Lincoln be proud to accept the past and enjoy the blessings of God.

  13. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    DNA
    Mini Kariappa’s findings should be investigated by DNA specialists. Random collection on the spot is not the correct method for DNA testing. During the determination of a DNA sequence there are many opportunities for errors. These include simple human errors,such as incorrectly recording a sequence from one medium to another or misinterpreting experimental data, as might occur at a compression in a sequencing gel. Such errors can lead to changes in protein coding sequences and obscure the interpretation of the final sequence.
    Did Mini quantitate the DNA using a spectrophotometer
    Did Mini estimate the concentration from a gel?
    A very common error is to submit an erroneous plasmid due to a cloning mistake, rearranged plasmid or damaged priming site. Another common problem is if another plasmid is present which doesn’t prime, effectively diluting the specific plasmid.

    Apart from these errors, common knowledge will tell us that if Nambudiris or Jews had been converted, their population will be greater than Syrian Christians.

  14. Mr.Yeshu Rathnam your statement “When historical facts are presented,Royal Nasrani should not lose temper and make personal attacks on scholars. There is no ‘mass complex’ as alleged by you. But you are having Nambudiri complex and that’s why you are striving hard to steal the ID cards of Nambudiris, although Nambudiri chronicles do not say that their people were converted.”
    I never quoted in any of the forums that a syrian is a pure “namboodiri convert” I stated that during St.Thomas mission Brahmins were found in Kerala and as oral traditions are the only “Real proofs” I have to believe the least available proof i.e the oral traditions and folklores ,its like questioning or doubting the whole ancestory of the Syrians just to have your “claims”clarified.An Iyer ,pattar ,embraanthiris are also referred to as namboodiris by most of the locals as they don’t know the differentiation.I do not have any complex as I am a Rajput (Kerala rajputs arrived back some centuries ago and had only negligible amount of population ,we are not the Samanthan Kshatriyas or Nairs elevated to the kshatriyahood ,we are real Rajputs and has a membership in the “Kshatritya kshema sabha” unlike the NSS who were shudras elevated to uppersect,we never mingled with the nairs we are patrilineal ) now please don’t attack rajputs for this reason.
    my mother is a Syrian .So I have no complexes of a namboodiri ,it is out of my syllabus.Ha ha ha I don’t have to “elevate myself to Kshatriyahood” like the nairs did in the past .But I am a Baptized Christian and from the Marthoma Syrian denomination now.Also my name “Royal Nasrani” is a relevant and meaningful login name.
    As per your comment on Anthropology dated May 27, 2012 at 5:44 am ,Firstly ,Anthrapology in india is a subject of no relevance …even I am dark….so you cannot quote me a pariah nor a lower caste.Even the Bene Israel jews of Maharashtra look like any other Maharashtrian…Darker sometimes worser Search on you tube for them …………so do the Knanaya community too looking indianized.Might be as you quoted due to one or two stray cases I am saying the contrary ….. Second…..If looks or anthropology is a reference point for you then pulayas of this century looks like any other nair or namboodiri …..but the pulaya converts to Christianity (the cheramars) look much more negroid “both from the same caste” and the kerala tribals would be the fairest ulladan ,mannan some even look like kashmiris … ….VISIT MATRIMONIAL SITES …. My study is that the hindu community in kerala must have “sambandhams” or “secret relations” with even the lower castes but the lower castes still look very much negroid … a Syrian tharavadi will never mix,they have internal denominations.
    Your statement —-“These are the words of eminent Kerala historian, Prof. Elaqmkulam Kunjan Pillai. Let me quote: : “Legend has it that the Apostle St.Thomas landed at Malankara near Kodungallor in the 1st century, established seven churches and converted many including some Nambudiris to the new faith. The Brahmins who later became Nambudiris arrived only in the 7th. and 8th centuries. Many centuries elapsed before the term Nambudiri was evolved.” I’ve also quoted the views of Logan”
    —–ABOVE STATEMENTS ITSELF REVEALS MY REFERANCES OF BRAHMINS IN KERALA IN THE 1ST CENTURY it does not oppose anywhere …Where does it disapprove????
    “Thomas Norton converted many outcastes in
    Alappuzha. Slaves liberated by missionaries such as Ragland and Hawkesworth at Mallappally were also baptized to join the mainstream of Syrian community. Ridsdale’s settlement included lower castes who were baptized to become Christians. Joseph Peet’s avowed policy was to give equal status to lower caste and outcaste converts in the Church. CMS missionaries even passed a Resolution in 1857 that converts from the slave-castes were to be given the ‘same footing as other member of the church.’ The fact that most of the Syrian Christians were from lower castes can be proved from the fact that they had to do the hard work, like other lower castes, in the paddy fields and agricultural farms of Nayars and Brahmins. In addition to this, they were forced to do compulsory duty called oozhiyam during Hindu temple festivals. As Prof. Sadasivan points out: “In 1787 poll tax was imposed on the Syrian Christians and they were already drafted for oozhiyam (gratituous or forced labour). The oozhiyam of the Syrian Christians included such duties as free supply of grass and hay to the temple cows, pounding of rice for the temples to feed the Brahmins and carrying heavy loads of faggot or fire wood for cooking in the temples. They had to do all these without murmur of protest even on Sundays and failure on their part would invoke barbaric reaction from the authorities.” .” Syrian Christians were not allowed to use public roads. A concrete evidence of this prohibition is “the Thiruvalla Edict” issued by dewan V. Krishna Rao. An Ezhava convert by name Cherian was abused and intimidated by Nairs for not observing the distance of pollution on the public road near a temple. Local Syrian Christian priests took up the matter of Cheriyan, with the Tahsildar and explained to him that a converted Ezhava was not bound down by the custom of his caste since he had already renounced it and become a Syrian Christian. The Tahsildar referred the matter to the dewan, V. Krishna Rao who issued a directive which was known as “the Thiruvalla Edict,” As per the Edict that “though an Ezhava becomes a Christian, he must never cease to be an Ezhava and therefore “Cherian and other converts must not be allowed to pass through the public highway by the temple.” It is quite transparent that the attempt of Syrian Christians to climb Nambudiiri or Nair bandwagon, unlike other Christians, was to camouflage their lower caste roots. God has blessed and elevated the community and even Nambudiris cannot equal the present status and prestige of Syrian Christians. Like Lincoln be proud to accept the past and enjoy the blessings of God.”
    Where does it state that they were embraced into the tharavadi Syrian christian families ????…..due to one or two stray cases why do you question the “St.Thomas mission” and the elite class converts.Thomas Christianity has even internal “tharavadi denominations”.

    Your Statement :
    DNA
    Mini Kariappa’s findings should be investigated by DNA specialists. Random collection on the spot is not the correct method for DNA testing. During the determination of a DNA sequence there are many opportunities for errors. These include simple human errors,such as incorrectly recording a sequence from one medium to another or misinterpreting experimental data, as might occur at a compression in a sequencing gel. Such errors can lead to changes in protein coding sequences and obscure the interpretation of the final sequence.
    Did Mini quantitate the DNA using a spectrophotometer
    Did Mini estimate the concentration from a gel?
    A very common error is to submit an erroneous plasmid due to a cloning mistake, rearranged plasmid or damaged priming site. Another common problem is if another plasmid is present which doesn’t prime, effectively diluting the specific plasmid.
    Apart from these errors, common knowledge will tell us that if Nambudiris or Jews had been converted, their population will be greater than Syrian Christians.

    So you are disapproving the study of experts,what a pity that something against your moroned mindset will be straightly neglected to prove your personal complexes…You have just googled the topics on error in DNA anlaysis..Let me ask you ???do you posses any qualification in genetics or so ???or were you been an observer or a participant in the DNA analyzing team???or atleast where you exposed practically to any of the Genetics laboratory at least once???

    I am not egoistic nor a chauvinist …but rather I just wanted to research on St.Thomas Mission …i don’t priorly draw conclusions and search the history …I Search and then draw conclusions…My “attack” on “scholars” like you was due to your posts in several threads for your impracticality ,egoism and eagerness to attack…….First research leaving all egoes and then conclude “your scholarly history”.

  15. Yeshurathnam ,All your referances were from the book “A Social History Of India By S. N. Sadasivan” who was an Ezhava….
    He has triggerred his agression on almost all the classes even the namboothiris ….What i learned from his books,that although explained effectively was just a personal agression and fight back to the caste consciousness in Kerala …might be many facts can be stated true but egoistic ,propogandist approach rules his composition..He have “justified” the buddhist Ezhava traditions thus attacking and stating every caste as low born..He has proved it …all may read..”Caste invades Kerala” chapter..He claims Namboothiris are from the Fisherman community??????Read page 301….

    http://books.google.co.in/book.....38;f=false

  16. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    When I read your drudging ramblings, I find there is no substance at all in your fake claims. You are repeating the same argument to usurp Nambudiri or Jewish status for untouchables. You have also criticized me for expressing my views in other web pages. I’ve presented a research paper in South Indian History Congress on this topic. So whenever comments are solicited, I give my viewpoint. Why are you afraid to face the truth? You have assumed the name of Nasrani without realizing how in the past other castes linked the name with untouchables. Abbe J.A. Dubois, a missionary in Mysore, in his letter dated August 7, 1815, writes: “The Jesuits, on their first arrival in India, hearing of them, in one way or other converted the greatest part to the Catholic faith. Their liturgy is to this day in the Syrian language, and in the performance of their religious ceremonies they use this ancient dead tongue. There remains still among them large congregations, consisting of 70 or 80,000 Christians, of whom two-thirds are Catholics, and a third Nestorians. They are all designated under the contemptuous name of Nazarany, and held by the pagans in still greater contempt than the Christians of this part of the country. The Nairs chiefly keep them at a greatest distance, and they form a separate body in society.” (Dubois, Abbe J.A., Letters On The State of Christianity in India, New Delhi:Associated Publishing House, (1977),p.12). This is a documentary evidence of the lower caste status of Syrian Christians at the time of the arrival of the Portuguese. But some people are fabricating legends and stories to historicize Nambudiri and Jewish descent. The present minority status of Jews and Nambudiris is a solid proof that DNA findings by some vested interests were false and manipulated.
    Your racial remarks about Sadasivan, an eminent research scholar, reveal your determination to hold on to your fake Jewish or Nambudiri claims. If you call Sadasivan an Ezhava, Church history tells us that thousands and thousands of Ezhavas volunteered to be converted to avoid caste oppression and Oozhiyam service. What about your past? As Sadasivan says: “All untouchable converts were specifically instructed by the missionaries “not to disclose their previous caste and converts made it a point to adhere by it unfalteringly. In the result, the CMS came to earn another expansion or full form, Chovan Mansamungriya Sabha (the society of the
    baptized Ezhavas).” No Nambudiri will acknowledge that your ancestor belonged to their caste. If Thomas of Cana were a Jew, the first thing that he would have done was to visit Jewish settlements in Kodngallor. There is no reference to Thomas of Cana in Jewish records. Eminent Church historians, including Firth, now say there was no Thomas of Cana at all. It was all a story circulated by some wealthy untouchable converts to establish JEWISH PEDIGREE.
    The Cochin Jews were divided into two distinct classes, one known as the Jerusalem, or white, and the other as the Black Jews. Black Jews were also called mappillais (Juta mappillais). As Lawson says: “The Black Jews may either be the descendants of early native proselytes, or of individuals entitled to a bar sinister.They are considered by the White Jews as inferior race, and intermarriage between them has never, consequently, taken place.” ( T Charles Allen Lawson, British and Native Cochin, London: Nissen & Parker, 1861, p.125).There is no reference to Black Jewish Christians in Kerala History and it is ridiculous to claim Jewish blood when the owners never accept this false claim. On the contrary, Prof. Isaac, a Syrian Christian of CMS College, gives in one of his research papers that Syrian Christians were Paraya converts. Central Kerala is the abode of a major chunk of Syrian Christian population. Let us see the food habits of the Syrian Christians of central Keralam. No doubt, Syrian Christians are no exception to the universal Christian food habit of non-vegetarianism. The Syrian Christian’s specialty to beef is a very popular phenomenon. A large-scale cow slaughter is taking place in Central Keralam and the chief consumers of it are Syrian Christians (both Kananaya and Saint Thomas). The ancient beef eating community, prior to the arrival of Christianity, was Parayas (Candalas) of Keralam.
    Another evidence given by Professor Isaac is: “The high priests of the traditional Parayas are called “Kaikaran”25. It is interesting to see that the trustee/prasuventi of Syrian church is still known/identified in the land as “Kaikaran”. Why did a savarna origin Syrian Christian not go for a savarna term like ‘Kalakakaran’ or ‘Adhikari’ instead of a subaltern terminology? No doubt, this trustee of the Syrian church (kaikaran) is always hailing from aristocratic Syrian Christian family circle/taravadu of the respective parish.
    Still another concrete evidence given by Prof. Isaac to establish Paraya pedigree for Syrian Christians is the burial practice. When the head of the Paraya (Candala) community is dead, as per the customary jati law they bury the corpus of the deceased head (moopan) in sitting posture instead of the usual practice of keeping the dead body in lying position. The Kananaya and Saint Thomas Syrian Jacobite/Orthodox factions of Kerala Christians are the only communities other than the Parayas (Candalas) to bury the corpse of their bishops (spiritual head) in the manner of the Paraya moopans of old. No other Christian factions neither upheld nor practiced such a burial system. This burial pattern suggests a very strong socio-cultural or anthropological relation between both communities, which lost their link elsewhere in the deluge of history.

  17. *Mr Yeshurathnam your statement ———-“Abbe J.A. Dubois, a missionary in Mysore, in his letter dated August 7, 1815, writes: “The Jesuits, on their first arrival in India, hearing of them, in one way or other converted the greatest part to the Catholic faith. Their liturgy is to this day in the Syrian language, and in the performance of their religious ceremonies they use this ancient dead tongue. There remains still among them large congregations, consisting of 70 or 80,000 Christians, of whom two-thirds are Catholics, and a third Nestorians. They are all designated under the contemptuous name of Nazarany, and held by the pagans in still greater contempt than the Christians of this part of the country. The Nairs chiefly keep them at a greatest distance, and they form a separate body in society.” This is a documentary evidence of the lower caste status of Syrian Christians at the time of the arrival of the Portuguese. But some people are fabricating legends and stories to historicize Nambudiri and Jewish descent. The present minority status of Jews and Nambudiris is a solid proof that DNA findings by some vested interests were false and manipulated.

    1)……… I cannot trust a foreign historian unless and until he understands an Indian culture and castes tremendously and has aanlysis in depth only then he can make claims …an Indian christian may it be latin or Syrian will be identicalto a foreigner as every Chinese or Sardars looks the same .So there is a possibility of mistake.What a pity that you still cling to the foreign authors to justify your claims.A “nair” is a race and has as much as 56 groups and subgroups which are totally different from each other in social hierarchy and status. Syrians were engaged in a variety of professions not confined to any or not similar to the hindu “caste professions”.One of the reality is that Christians were easily influenced with the western world and started mingling even with the lower castes after portueguese arrival and maintained connections with them (maybe Christianity gave light to them unlike the stupid brahmanism), this may be the reason some Christians were not permitted to touch a Nair of a higher category.A large no of Christians were from the middle class stratum as most of them were agriculturalists …Do you think any farmer would be permitted to touch a king?????….But wealthy Christian traders ,Kalari asans were polluted even by the touch of a Nair(Now don’t mix the elevated Nairs of kshatriyahood with the common nairs)…anyways money and profession talks. There is a difference between a Barber and a Hair Designer always,an aaya and a home nurse,a cook and a chef, is totally different, Westernisation and education has opened the doors then for a Syrian to accept diverse profession that earned him money ,but the parallel hindu(mostly illiterate) caste hierarchy have attached these professions comparing its alike castes.Remember that a Christian is not in the hindu caste hierarchy ,so it is likely that many did not mingle and vice versa.Even Now the RSS and NSS keeps distance when mingling with the Christians and vice versa…The NSS have always built their Karayogams nearby all christian churches ,we can minutely observe the same across kerala ,the same way as near every muslim colonies there is a Shiv Sena group flourishing in Maharashtra … in the modern society this was more severe due to the stupid works of the CHATTAMPI SWAMY “KRISTHUMATHA CHETHANAM “ a book published on account of the christain aggression he possessed.
    Vallikada Panicker was a Christian Kalari Asan whom even the Kiryathil Nairs were afraid of.Tharakan were tax collectors Christians were also given some honorific titles. “Taragan” is a word derived from the word for tariff.
    Raja Thomas Villarvattom ,Raja Jacob Villarvattom,Rani Mariam “Kripavathy Mariam” were christian royals.
    You are too foolish and childish to claim that the DNA analysis of the experts were wrong.
    *Your statement “Your racial remarks about Sadasivan, an eminent research scholar, reveal your determination to hold on to your fake Jewish or Nambudiri claims. If you call Sadasivan an Ezhava, Church history tells us that thousands and thousands of Ezhavas volunteered to be converted to avoid caste oppression and Oozhiyam service. What about your past?”
    1)Racial Remarks???? I just said what I felt ,Sadashivan has explained and detailed effectively that all belongs to the ezhava very cunningly though gradually and silently …If we go on reading each and every chapter this will be revealed that A NAMBOODIRI=FISHERMAN=EZHAVA=NAIR=EZHAVA=SYRIANS ha ha ha ha…He proves Namboothiris are Fisherfolk…and those converted from the Ezhava are elevated to Brahminhood….He makes all Nairs from the ezhavas (the common stock) and then explains about the ezhava conversion theories into Syrians.He has accomplished his will to relate all the castes of Kerala with with the Ezhavas but he never related any Parayans,Pulayans ,Mannans with the Ezhavas….This proves his he inferiority complex and thus attacked all other caste higher in the social order than his…. ALL MAY READ.
    And I already explained my past….My paternal side is of a Rajput and my maternal side is the Syrian ,I am living a life of a Christian and the name too is a Christian name.

    *Your Statement: As Sadasivan says: “All untouchable converts were specifically instructed by the missionaries “not to disclose their previous caste and converts made it a point to adhere by it unfalteringly. In the result, the CMS came to earn another expansion or full form, Chovan Mansamungriya Sabha (the society of the
    baptized Ezhavas).” No Nambudiri will acknowledge that your ancestor belonged to their caste. If Thomas of Cana were a Jew, the first thing that he would have done was to visit Jewish settlements in Kodngallor. There is no reference to Thomas of Cana in Jewish records. Eminent Church historians, including Firth, now say there was no Thomas of Cana at all. It was all a story circulated by some wealthy untouchable converts to establish JEWISH PEDIGREE.
    1)“RACIAL INFILTERATION” has happened …Syrians of now are of genetically mixed class ….I do not deny …Maybe the Paternal side has a clear lineage and the maternal side mixed one…..And my friend I feel you are speaking the contrary in both your sentences….You said “Syrians had a lower status” and in the same breath you say that “Chovans were converted to Syrians”..My question is Why??THAT ITSELF SUGGESTS THAT SYRIANS WERE OF THE HIGHER STATUS ??What a contradiction in your own statements..Atleast think before you post hahahaha….Infilteration and fake Syrians have racially infiltered into the mainstream Christianity but when “Tharavadithvam” is questioned then everythings out…
    And Namboodiris have always been adamant in their priestly activities and orthodox routines ,even a Namboothiri taking a sword for self defense was degraded to Brahma-Kshatriya caste “Nambidi” etc etc …And they even does not consider them as pre-Namboothiris anywhere …. And a concept of a religious conversion will be a matter of more severity…a christian turned namboodiri is nothing more than a “Brashtu” or outcaste to them,so the inclusiveness of pre namboodiris is a matter to be thought of ..it is a No.And also a Namboodiri could only trace his lineages only back to the 7th or 8th century……You trust a Namboothiri Family History and in the same breathe you shower your ignorance to the Syrian Family Histories ..What a pity.

    *Your Statement : Central Kerala is the abode of a major chunk of Syrian Christian population. Let us see the food habits of the Syrian Christians of central Keralam. No doubt, Syrian Christians are no exception to the universal Christian food habit of non-vegetarianism. The Syrian Christian’s specialty to beef is a very popular phenomenon. A large-scale cow slaughter is taking place in Central Keralam and the chief consumers of it are Syrian Christians (both Kananaya and Saint Thomas). The ancient beef eating community, prior to the arrival of Christianity, was Parayas (Candalas) of Keralam”
    1.The Kashmiri Brahmins had a mass conversion to Islam …..They were strict vegetarians and later on they started the Halaal food which includes beef even.
    2.The Podavar Brahmin-of nambbodiri origins — These Brahmins consume meat and are involved in animal sacrifice at several Kali Temples around Kerala, such as Madayi Kavu. Adikal is the title used by Brahmins at the Kodungallur Bhagavathy Temple, who are also involved in animal sacrifice.
    3.The Brahmins -Goud Saraswat and Chitpavans eat fish and even chicken in their daily diet.
    So your food habits play no relevance as a namboodiri converted to christianity becomes a “bhrasht “and gradually have developed freedom of even food habits ..Christianity is a wider concept of acceptance.
    Even I know a sect of syrian denomination …EEYOMAYAM who are strict vegetarians ,but their population is negligible almost 400 nos in Kerala ,I personally know them.
    Your Statement: Another evidence given by Professor Isaac is: “The high priests of the traditional Parayas are called “Kaikaran”25. It is interesting to see that the trustee/prasuventi of Syrian church is still known/identified in the land as “Kaikaran”. Why did a savarna origin Syrian Christian not go for a savarna term like ‘Kalakakaran’ or ‘Adhikari’ instead of a subaltern terminology? No doubt, this trustee of the Syrian church (kaikaran) is always hailing from aristocratic Syrian Christian family circle/taravadu of the respective parish… Still another concrete evidence given by Prof. Isaac to establish Paraya pedigree for Syrian Christians is the burial practice. When the head of the Paraya (Candala) community is dead, as per the customary jati law they bury the corpus of the deceased head (moopan) in sitting posture instead of the usual practice of keeping the dead body in lying position. The Kananaya and Saint Thomas Syrian Jacobite/Orthodox factions of Kerala Christians are the only communities other than the Parayas (Candalas) to bury the corpse of their bishops (spiritual head) in the manner of the Paraya moopans of old. No other Christian factions neither upheld nor practiced such a burial system. This burial pattern suggests a very strong socio-cultural or anthropological relation between both communities, which lost their link elsewhere in the deluge of history

    Mr .Yeshu …There are many customs similar to or greater than the savarnas why do you want to relate only one or two stray cases that is of parayan origins:
    1. In both communities, i.e. Kerala Christians and Kerala Brahmins men used to wear sacred
    thread(puunuul),kudumi(tuft), but the only difference from that of the Brahmins was that the Christians used
    to insert a silver cross into their tuft(kudumi) now almost not followed in the modern times
    2.In both communities, i.e. Kerala Christians and Kerala Brahmins, women wear only predominantly whitedress. Among Brahmins of the East Coast only widows use white dress. Otherwise dark reds, blues, greens etc. are used by Brahmin women outside Kerala.
    3.For both communities, Kerala Christians and Kerala Brahmins, piercing the nose for nasal ornaments is taboo as nasal piercing is considered an act of the lower castes by the two communities . For all Brahmin women elsewhere nasal ornaments are customary.
    4.Architecture of residential houses of Upper Caste Hindus and Christians was almost identical, both residing in Nalukettu and Ettukettu houses, respectively having one inner courtyard surrounded by four (nalu) halls (cf. Span. courtyard – patio -; Ital. cortile; Rom. Atrium), and having two inner courtyards surrounded by eight (ettu)
    halls.11
    5.Architecture of churches and temples was alike. Cf. Temple Architecture of Kerala, Dept. of Archaeology, Govt. of Kerala, Trivandrum, and Andrews Athappilly, ―Church Architecture of Kerala‖, STCEI, II, 1973, as also id. James Menachery, ―Thomas Christian Architecture‖. Remember how Vasco da Gama and company mistook a temple for a church and worshipped Kali or Bhagavathy thinking it was Our Lady (BVM). To avoid the similarity between the temple and the church the Portuguese introduced the ―facade‖in Kerala churches as an extension of the wall separating the nave or Hykala from the portico or Mukhamandapam of the church. Also see the hundreds of photographs by this writer – in the STCEI II
    (1973)and the Indian Church History Classics, Vol. I, The Nazranies (1998).
    6 .Both in front of many churches (e.g. Kallooppara, Niranam, Kundra, Chengannur), and the majority of temples there are rock (granite) lampstands .
    7.Syrian Christians universally uses Nilavilakku in their houses and churches.
    7.In front of both the churches and temples there are flagstaffs.
    8.Both communities are patriarchal, unlike the family system of the other Kerala castes who follow the matrilineal system.
    9.Both communities hold menstruation and delivery to be occasions of pollution, demanding elaborate ablutions and purificatory ceremonies.
    10.Both communities have many customs connected with child birth ( e.g. feeding the babe with powdered gold and honey). In the eleventh month the child is ceremoniously fed with rice for the first time. Mangoose teeth and panther toes worked in gold were part of the children‘s ornaments.
    10.Ceremonies connected with marriage like ceremonial baths, Manthrakodi or Pudava (bridal cloth or veil),
    Thali or Minnu – the gold ornament signifying marriage tied by the groom adorning the bride‘s neck until
    ―death do them part‖ – are all to be found among the Namboodiri Brahmins and the Christians in an identical style. Similarly death and funeral ceremonies like Pula, keeping legal defilement for a certain number of days,
    Shradham or the several feasts in memory of the dead were common to these communities.
    Similarly there are a number of general customs and manners common to the Judaic and Thomas Christian traditions. Here one must note the K‟ nai and his party. Naturally Jewish customs are more prevalent in that community of Southist Knanaya Christians than among the vast majority of Northist Thomas Christians. However as many Jewish and Old Testament customs are to be met with in Christianity all over the world here one might be content merely to enumerate a few customs found commonly among the Jews and the Thomas Christians in general.
    1. The Thomas Christians abstained from work on feasts and on Sundays. This abstention may be compared to the Jewish abstention from work on the Sabbath.
    2. The similarity in the celebration of the Pascal feast between the Jewish customs and the Kerala Christian customs is noteworthy. In this there was very little difference between the Knanaya community and the other
    Thomas Christian communities. ―Though a Pascal lamb is not used, certain elements of this meal allude to the
    Jewish Passover, as, for instance, the unleavened bread, the wine [―milk‖], the time of the meal, the ordinary
    supper preceding, the standing position, the respect and reverence pervading the scene, the annual commemoration
    of the wonderful works of God, the bitter herbs, almsgiving, and the singing of hymns.‖
    3. Both communities are seen to use mostly biblical names for their children. Names from the Old Testament
    are quite common, such as Abraham (Avara, Avarachan), Issac (Ithakku), Jacob (James, Chacko, Chakkunny,
    Chakkappan, Yakkob) and Joseph (Ouseph).According to Ludovico di Varthema, ―They use four names,
    John, James, Matthew, and Thomas.‖ However today George is the most popular Christian name among the
    Nazranies.
    4. Covering their heads while in worship. This is tradition among the Jewish descendents of Abrahamic religion.
    This is observed by the entire Nasrani people until this day.
    5. Their ritual services (liturgy) was and still is called the Qurbana (also spelled Kurbana), which is derived from
    the Hebrew Korban meaning ―Sacrifice‖.
    Mr.Yeshurathnam I can make out that you may be a latin convert/new convert/saffron fundamentalist/or a non malayali …leave all aggression and read bible to cool your brains.History may be biased but fabricated history is an art built in by the” modern scholars” non fabricated truth , if there is no evidences then believe the ancestors and its only by calculation if 100 years equals 3 generations then by calculation approximate 60 generations are over as per the st.Thomas conversions and 60 generations are just 60 times a parent transferring his past to his childrenand I don’t feel a christian tongue in olden days would lie …if it was been a construction of just one or two person how come it got commonuised between the masses ??so I have to believe the ancestry rather than “MODERN SCHOLARS” explaining effectively and showing great technical efforts by executing their intelligence to degrade the comme il fauts of this soceity. Grow up Yeshurathnam have a sound sleep,Everything is equal in the eyes of the lord the king Jesus.

  18. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    You are repeating your moronic ideas already refuted by scholars with historical evidences.
    The Bible says: “Intelligent people want to learn, but stupid people are satisfied with ignorance.”
    You are quoting church architecture, nilavilakku etc., to claim Nambudiri descent without realizing the cardinal fact the Nambudiris do not own you as their offspring. You are fabricating stories to historicize your Nambudiri or Jewish relationship which is rejected by both owners. Even Pulayas have nilavilakku and their temples are similar to other Hindu temples. In spite of scholarly explanation, if you are still sticking to invented stories and legends, there is no point in arguing with you. As the Bible says: “As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly. I feel sorry I’ve wasted my precious time in reading your 0ft-repeated rubbish. Since I’ve answered to all your doubts in my previous comments, I’m not going to have any more dialogue with you. In the mental asylum there are many patients who call themselves Alexander the Great, Napoleon etc., So you can also satisfy your ego by claiming that you are Nambudiri or Jewish descent.

  19. Isaiah 48:11 For myself, even because of my name, I will do it; for I will not let my name be shamed; and my glory I will not give to another.

    Heb 11:1 (NEB) Faith… makes us certain of realities we do not see.

    Mat 24:4-5 (NIV) “Watch out that no one deceives yo”.

    Luke 21:8 (Jer) “Take care that you are not misled.

    Hebrews 4:15 He was tempted in every way, so that means He faced all the other things you and I would be tempted by as well. Having no sin nature only helped Him withstand the temptation, it didn’t make Him immune.

    1 Timothy 6:1 Let as many as are bondservants under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honor, that the name of God and the doctrine not be blasphemed.

  20. Yeshurathnam, I am not a moroned specie as you ,i wanted to findout more about the pains that St.thomas took in preaching the truth to people ?who were the people ?who killed him ? and so n so…and I never did quote that a syrian has a “pure lineage “ no I did not …Yet the patrilineal lineages were direct and maternal lineage there is an admixture even the DNA states it…..you can refer my earlier comments . On any circumstances or conditions I cannot agree to “modern scholar’s” claims of St.thomas never established a church…in a way the St.Thomas Christians are itself a living evidence for the Apostolic mission of Thomas (People or community from no other part of the world are questioning such a claim or making a counter claim).In view of the extensive trade relations existed between Malabar and mediteranean countries before the Christian era there is nothing inherently improbable in this tradition apostolic origin of Malabar and malankara church A critical and unbiased review of the hitherto literature on St.thomas n antiquity of Christianity in kerala by historians & others ,will reveal that many of them are written under the influence of vested interests or with east-west bias.These interests may be colonial,parochial,communal or sectarian though this generalization is more evident in the case of western authors (All your referances),eastern and Indian or keralite authors including church historians are not free from this criticism,because of this ,we cannot fully depend on a particular writter or school of thought and an objective analysis is very difficult before making such an attempt ,one moot question will arise….Who wants to prove that apostle Thomas did come to India?in my humble opinion,the Syrian community only .what about the world christain and foreign authors,Right from the portuguese period ,western missionaries have an inclination to prove that christianity is a European product and St.thomas did not evangelize india ,only they are responsible for the converted missionaries in the land ,they felt that for establishing and nurturing their mission art monopoly ,and religious colonalism,indiian mission of st.thomas and the existence of a Syrian rite Christianity with apostolic linage under the Babylonian patriarchate ,were true impediments.this prejudicial approach is clearly visible in most of the writings on the subjects by colonial authors, what about the sections of christians proselytized by the Portuguese .most of them and their authiors like to brand the mission of st.thomas and the legacy of thomas christiasns as sheer legends and myths rather than true history (eg.the writings of Dr.john ochanthuruth)_ the pride and prejucice and namboodiri origins and the so called caste superiority are not liked by them.What about the seculiar historians of kerala?in the academic or university level in the recent past no serious studies have taken place .it is a pity that the limited number of academicians who undertook such a task also led by narrow political ,parochial or communal prejudices.because of their reluctance to go beyond the beaten track and satisfy with superfluous studies unable to reach in a correct conclusion .the articles of Dr.MGS Narayanan ,Dr.Rajan kurukkal,Dr.S.N.Sadashivasn on this subject are classical examples…every topic is debatable and if one needs to prove himself then he can ,even bible has contradictory words.Your moronness i could make out due to your long n retarded posts in every nasrani forums and blogs ,that even the same topic …you never discuss with any but just COPY PASTE from S.N.Sadashivans History of India.You subtly be slave to the nairs ,the foreigners ….Your statement in your first post in this blog “ In a caste-ridden and conservative society, no Nair or Brahmin woman would have ventured to marry the foreigners”?????Firstly you claim that their was no namboodiri nor nair in kerala when these “foreigners” visited and later you claim this …what a contradiction please solidfify your proofs and links before you make any loose comments here .Come on a nair is a shudra who let their girls into concubinage by socially higher and even lower …You better learn about Pulapedi,Mannanpedi,Parappedi……You are just intolerant and jealous to the Syrians and due to westernization and liberal thinking and tolerant nature most of the Syrians everywhere in all forums accept every extremist and defaming comments from any due to their wider HDI’s …..If you would have gone to a nair blog ..you would have been screwed there…….Yeshurathnam.
    And many asked me why a high caste hindu would convert to christian faith its simple as…….Why did a large no of Brahmin from goa and manglore accept Christianity when caste consciousness was at an extreme condition …..All converts from Brahmin sub-castes such as the Goud Saraswat Brahmins, Padyes, Daivadnyas, etc, were lumped into the Christian caste of Bamonn,1505 numbers of Brahmin souls were baptised in one session in Divar and they are called as “Bammons” who are Roman catholics….in the 16th cent.
    The second were kshatriya conversions .The earliest known instance of Kshatriya conversions to Christianity took place in 1560, when 700 Kshatriyas were baptised en masse in Carambolim, Tiswadi.Mass Baptisms in this village (Batim in Bardez) took place on 25 August 1560. The priests who had been sent to make preparations for the christening were asleep when at midnight of the 24th (August) more than 200 persons (men, women and children) knocked at their door and declared that they wished to become Christians. The women were very well dressed and wore plenty of gold. The men were also well dressed with feathers in their caps and guns on their shoulders. This group was led by one man named Camotim (Kamat). He wore scarlet satin pants, had a silver sword at his waist and a gun on his shoulder. All of them were baptised on the above-mentioned day. These people belonged to the Chardo class, consisting of warriors, men of a much better personality than the Brahmins.”
    The Charodis are converts from Marattas(the most extremists hindus) and form the second largest group in the Mangalorean Catholic community.

    Then in a Chera empire it would have been a simple fact for St.Thomas to convert the higher caste people ,as caste and creed were alien concepts to them n the greatest probability is that he would have converted the literate class whatever their DNA
    God Bless you.
    🙂 Have a sound sleep.

  21. Correction :The 5th last row i meant to say “Higher class” and not higher caste.Regrets.

  22. Yakob says:

    A truly evolved person wouldn’t care about his background, whether he is “high caste” or “low caste” or inbetween. What matters is the ability to take the high road and be above the fray. That said, it is my belief that Sankaracharya (a Nambudiri) when he laid down the 64 codes of conduct adopted many of the customs of the Nasranis who were there around 800 years before he was born. The similarities in birth, death, and marriage ceremonies, dress, ornaments, etc are striking. It is generally agreed among historians that the Nambudiris came to Kerala in the 8th century whereas the Christians were already there in the 1st century. So it is the Nambudiris who adopted the Christian customs, not the other way round.

  23. Dear Mr.Yakob,
    I do not have any egos with upper or lower but the thing is in every thread I visit to research on a subject on nasranis, this chauvinist Yeshurathnam diverts the topic rather than research …this is the first time I could not stay quite….For research,we should posses neutral state of mind without any personal interests that may be colonial,parochial,communal or sectarian ….oral traditions,broken proofs,migrations,nature of the society of the particular age ,dna etc etc should be linked together to conclude..may it be the opposite to your beliefs …but research,discussions,analysis can only give a conclusion not a sectarian claims as that of Yeshurathnam.
    Yes,Mr.Yakob, it can be the other way round even …but for that the waves of namboodiri migration to kerala has to be analysed…and kerala had a huge Aryan migration in 8th century but there were even Aryan thread wearers described in the sangam age B.C in the chera country….But they could not introduce a strict caste system then,even if they tried….It is also not reliable to claim that Namboodiris migrated in 8th century only and all of a sudden they implemented the caste system…..There was been a wave of migration ,the huge number of migration can be believed in the 7th to 8th cent.

  24. Appappan says:

    A.Yeshuratnam is a great scholar who is hiding his past behind the name of Christ. But his face doesnt cooperate. Does it ? University College Alumni page shows Dr.Ratnams photograph and I remember what V.S Achumama said in bangalore “Had if not for his name, not even a dog would …”. Every time Dr.Ratnam takes a look at the mirror he curse himself and his pariah past. Taking in to account the words of his pastor that he would be able to bury his contemptuous past behind his name he converted and became a bloody clapping penthy, but his face didnt cooperate. I feel sorry. ‘Genusinte konam”

    According to Dr. Ratnam’s law population increase should be accounted to pariah conversion. So presumably Indian population increased from 30Crs in 1950 to 120Crs in 2010 as approximately 70Crore pariahs joined from else where.

    I agree that we are all converted pariahs. But may I ask how come the skin tone (or complexion) and stature benefit by Religious conversion ? How come the Syrians are Fair skinned by Majority ?

    The book is full of absurdities. It reads on page 29 “God He will assuredly declare that the god who could be pleased with the shedding of the blood of so many victims immolated to his honour must undoubtedly be a deity of the same kind far be from me the blasphemy as the mischievous Hindoo deities Cohly Mahry Darma rajah and other infernal gods whose wrath cannot be appeased but by the shedding of blood and the immolating of living victims ”

    So Dharma Rajah was a blood thirst hindu deity ? I thought he was the King of Travancore Rama Varma ? The authenticity of this book is evident from this.

    Dharma Rajah’s finance minister, i.e finance minister of Tranvancore
    was Thachil Mathoo Tharakan, a Syrian. Was it not around the same period that Sakthan Tampuran settled scores of Syrian families in Trissur ?

    This is indeed a great book authored by a well informed author “Both catholics and Nestorians have a clergy of their own and the clergy of are equally ignorant neither having the of receiving a proper education As their liturgy is in Syrian all the science of their clergy consists in being able to read or rather spell this language in order to be qualified to perform their religious ceremonies I have been assured that there is at present no one amongst the catholic or the Nestorian clergy capable of properly understanding or explaining two phrases of the Syriac books They have no houses of education no teachers no professors but only some schools kept by their ignorant priests for the purpose of teaching persons destined to the ecclesiastic profession to read this language ”

    The author is a bloody clapping protestant penthy who has written this malice out of contempt as he couldnt win any converts. He says “Only Catholicism will gain roots in India”
    “single Behold the Nestorians in Travancore Interrogate them ask them for an account of their success in the work of proselytism in these modern times Ask them whether they are gaining ground and whether the interests of their ancient mode of worship is improving They will reply that so far from this being the case their congregations once so flourishing and amounting according to Gibbon’s account to 200,000 souls are now reduced to less than an eighth of this number and are daily diminishing “. I didnt knew that the Orthodox/Jacobite faction was reduced to such a low figure 25000 souls ?

    Another argument is about beef eating. Dear Dr.Ratnam, if you use condom these days, does it mean your forefathers also used condom ?

    Dr. Ratnam. I pitty you, your pathetic mind and soul.
    Get a life.

  25. Appappan says:

    Dr. Ratnam, Your own blog contradicts your on postings on other sites. your post on Shankaracharya reads “As Nehru tells his daughter in Glimpses of World History: “You may be surprised to learn that Christianity came to India long before it went to England or Western Europe, and when even in Rome it was a despised and proscribed sect.” Probably Shankara evolved his advaita concept from what he learnt from St. Thomas Christians living in his native village in Kerala. He introduced a new intellectual kind of Hinduism called Saivism and it was modeled on the Biblical concept of one God in the Old Testament. Shankara’s Saivism gradually evolved into monotheism within Hinduism. The Bible speaks about one God only and it is totally against idol worship. Shankara owes a debt to the Christian concept that nothing has substance, all being void. ‘Illusion, illusion and a chasing of the wind’. Eccles.4:16. In this illusiory world, God alone remains immortal………. These ideas were in the mind of Shankara when he evolved his advaita philosophy and his attack on idolatry. North Indian Brahmins called him a ‘Disguised Buddhist,’ for they were not aware of Christians in Kerala. In actual reality, Shankara was a ‘disguised Christian.’”

    How would a Brahmin like Shankaracharya (most orthodox brahmin ever lived) who himself wrote down the 64 rules for the Brahmin community in Kerala would go to ‘untouchable Marthoma Nasranis ?’ (As per the rules of the land All offerings to the temple still required to be touched for purification by a Marthoma Nasrani).

  26. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    1. At the outset I would like to say that it is not at all my intention to wound the feelings Appappan, Royal Nasrani et al by presenting the results of my research. I belong to the school of Participatory History which considers how participatory cultural modalities have democratized historical methodologies. Historians Elsa Barkley Brown and Barbara Fields belong to this category. While I was browsing on the internet I found in most blogs Syrian Christians are shown as descendants of Nambudiris or Jews. As a student of history, I was curious about this phenomenon and I began to search for historical evidences to support this view. But evidences are contrary to the views of Appappan. Do you want to expunge from Missionary records and from the archives of the history of Travancore the large scale conversion of untouchables such as Ezhavas, Mukkuvas, barbers, dhobies, Pariahs and slaves by Bailey, Fenn, Baker, Norton, Hawkswoth and others in Aleppey, Mavelikara, Kottayam, Mallappally, Thiruvalla, Changanassery and Chengannur (the epicenter of Syrian Christians now)? As Marx said, ‘To leave an error unrefuted is to encourage intellectual immorality.’ To dismantle this ‘intellectual immorality,’ I have tried to give a correct picture through my comments on the Net. I’ve never thought that my findings will get your adrenalin going. Truth often hurts. The sudden rise in your adrenalin can be gauged from your impertinent, perverted and sadistic statement, “Every time Dr. Ratnam takes a look at the mirror he curses himself and his pariah past.” For one thing, I’m not a Pariah and I don’t have a pariah past, but comes from an illustrious and elite family.. .Every time I “take a look at the mirror,” I do not curse myself but I enjoy life and the blessings of God — with a vast circle of friends and with membership in so many clubs, every day gives me pleasant opportunities and new avenues to make life quite enjoyable, exhilarating and entertaining. But in your case, if the artificial and spurious layers of Nambudiri and Jew are peeled out, your real origin will be exposed and you will be cursing your ignoble past. Who can disown history?
    I’ve never said that Syrians are Pariah converts. I’ve quoted the view of Prof. Isaac of CMS College, Kottayam. In an article published in the Journal for National Resurgence, he links the food habits of Syrian Christians to Pariah origin. Prof. Isaac says, “The Syrian Christian’s specialty to beef is a very popular phenomenon. A large-scale cow slaughter is taking place in Central Keralam and the chief consumers of it are Syrian Christians (both Kananaya and Saint Thomas). The ancient beef eating community, prior to the arrival of Christianity, was Parayas (Candalas) of Keralam.”
    It is ridiculous to claim Nambuduri or Jewish descent on the basis of skin color. Albuqurqe was responsible for the skin color.. Albuqurque’s policy was to form a population which should be a loyal to Portugal. In his Commentaries he says that numerous Hindu women were willing to marry the Portuguese and he gave them special privileges. In Brazil, an important division of the population was descended from mixed marriages between the Portuguese settlers and the aboriginal tribes, and in India the number of Portuguese half-castes formed a recognized section of the Christian population. As Woodcock says, “Portuguese soldiers and officials were encouraged to marry Keralan women, and Malayalis, provided they become Christians, had equal rights with whites in the municipality they set up in Fort Cochin. Converts were often given high military and civil posts, and some were even ennobled.” The Portuguese were in India not for 10 or 15 years but for 150 years. One can imagine how many thousands of Hindu lower caste women would have married the Portuguese and how many thousands of children would have been produced during this long period of 150 years. There were separate colonies with special privileges for the families who married the Portuguese. Although they were brought up as Roman Catholics, after the exit of the Portuguese, there was widespread intermarriage between local Syrian Christians who were also from lower castes and the Portuguese converts, for they were all collectively known as Christians in a Hindu kingdom. This accounts for the skin color of Christians, and it is quite conspicuous among the Syrian Catholics of Kochi,Thrissur, Vadakkancherry, Kodungalloor areas.where the Portuguese had permanent settlements. Initially the skin color of the children of this inter- racial marriage (white and black lower castes) would have resembled Anglo-Indians. As years rolled by, nay centuries, children of black skinned lower castes got white skin color, but different from pale, white-skin color of Europeans. Genetic and socio-cultural hypotheses can be attributed for the white skin color of many Syrian Christians, although there are several thousands who are dark and black skinned and they would not come under this classification.
    . The Portuguese period, in my view, is the Golden Era of Syrian Christians. The Portuguese gave armed protection to Syrian Christians and this enabled them for the first time to defy Nairs and Brahmins. The Portuguese gave vast forest areas to Christians and encouraged a systematic and scientific way of farming cash crops. This made Syrian Christians wealthy planters. The Portuguese stopped the historic commercial connection between Kerala, Arabia and Egypt. They, instead, launched the new European trade which brought more money and luxury into Kerala. This new trend helped the Syrian Christians to emerge as a major mercantile community. That is how Thachil Mathoo Tharakan, as a wealthy merchant, was accommodated by Dharma Rajah. But Velu Thampi knew his past, and Tharakan was whipped, his ears were cut off and dismissed from service. After the Portuguese and Dutch periods, Syrian Christians lost all their privileges and were treated as lower castes. In the Kundara Proclamation Velu Thampy refers to Christians as ‘low caste people’,’put up crosses and Christian flags in pagodas.. .’The dreadful massacre of Syrian Christians was conducted by one Kunju Kutty Pillai on the orders of Velu Thampy. 9 Syrian priests and upwards of 3000 Syrian Christians, men, women and children were maimed, tortured, butchered and thrown into the backwater.
    Appappan says “As per the rules of the land All offerings to the temple still required to be touched for purification by a Marthoma nasrani. We know what happened to Mercy Ravi’s son when he was taken to a temple. Will the Hindus allow Marthoma nasrani to enter a temple or to bless the temple offerings? What will be the reaction of BJP and Siva Sena of Kerala unit? Tall claim Appappan? You are still living in fools’ paradise.

  27. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    How did the Syrians lose their backward caste status to make spurious claims?

    After mass conversion of untouchables and outcastes, CMS missionaries wanted to protect the new converts from the fury of upper castes, especially Nayars and Tamil Brahmins. They worked out an ingenious plan to give official status of upper caste to untouchable converts by making them casteless so that they would not be persecuted by their Nair landlords and exempted from oozhiyam service. They brought pressure on the Census authorities not to record the previous caste of the converts by explaining to them that “Christianity was essentially a casteless religion and Christians are casteless and represent an egalitarian community that stands for international fraternity.” CMS missionaries succeeded in dropping the caste name of Syrian Christians in the Census Report of 1875. In the earlier census records Syrian Christians were shown as ‘backward community.’ But from 1875 onwards caste names were dropped and they were shown as Syrian Christians. And again, due to the tireless efforts of missionaries that Syrian Christians were excluded from the backward classes list in the 1898 Census Report. Till 1898 Syrian Christian community was a backward community in all official records since they were once untouchables and outcastes. They had to perform, like other backward communities, oozhiyam service and were barred from entering public roads and places. In 1898 Census Report Syrian Christian community was removed from backward class list. Government also issued instructions that no government servant should ask for the caste of Syrian Christians. The removal of Syrian Christians from the backward class list in 1898 was a milestone and it gave them carte blanche to claim any upper caste status. Once they became casteless in Government records, they started claiming Nambudiri and Jewish descent.

  28. Pathrose says:

    Dear Royal Nasrani,

    Sangh Parivar is executing its plan. It is their plan to turn backward Christians against Syrians. This Yesuratnam is of course a fake name by some bloody Hindutva terrorist who wants to make ur believe that the converted christians are against Syrian Christians. Do not fall for their plans.

  29. Kurien Koshy says:

    Dear Nasrani
    I find Royal Nasranis’s posts very interesting. According to the 1901 Census Report the population of Syrian Christians in 1901 was 672124 and the Nambudiri population was only 29, 895. If Syrian Christians are of Nambudiri descent, how is it their population exceed the Nambudiris? And again, I would like to know from him how many Nambudiris became Syrian Christians? Who were those Nambudiris? According to Jewish records, the leader of Pardesi Jewish community Ezekiel Rahabi (1694-1771) records 410 families: “We, who are known as White Jews, number some forty families with one synagogue. There is no other White Jewish colony in Malabar. There are colonies of Black Jews at six centers. In Cochin there are 150 families of these people with three synagogues. In Anjikaimal, just opposite Cochin, there are about 100 families with two synagogues. Five parsangs further north is Shenoth where there are fifty families with one synagogue. Two parsangs from Shenoth lies Mala where there are fifty families and one synagogue, while further south is situated Mutan with ten families and one synagogue, and the island of Tirtur, with ten families.” (1 parsang is 3.5 miles or 5.6 km). It is to be noted specifically that there is no reference to Nasrani Jews or Christian Jews. The arrival of Thomas of Cana is doubted. If he were a Jew, he would have visited the settlements of White Jews or Black Jews. Whenever foreigners visited Kerala, the rulers would give them special privileges inscribed in copper plates so that they would not be attacked by higher caste leaders, for violating cast rules of Hinduism while staying in the country. . The Zamorin gave many privileges to the Arabs and Chinese in Malabar. It is rumoured that the king of Kerala, one Cheraman, gave grants inscribed in copper plates to Thomas of Cana. In 1806 at the suggestion of Rev. Claude Buchanan, Colonel Macauly, the British resident, ordered a careful search for them and they turned up in the record room of Cochin town. The tables then contained (1) the grant to Irani Cortton of Cranganore, and (2) the set of plates of the grant to Maruvan Sopi Iso of Quilon, but those of the grant to Thomas Cana were not among them. Thomas Christians say that the Portuguese removed the plates. Then why the Portuguese did not remove the other plates? The truth of the matter is there were no such copper plates given to Thoma of Cana.Even if he had come, he was not a Jew but an Armenian. Then how can Syrian Christians claim descent from Jews. It can be now said with certainty that it was after the Census Report of 1898 when backward Syrian converts were made casteless, a calculated movenent was started by Syrian Christians to establish the fact that they were Nambudiri or Jewish descent.

  30. Dear Mr.Koshy ,
    About the population statistics ….You have to learn about the namboodiri systems …only the elder son of the namboodiri was allowed to marry an Antherjanam..the other children practiced sambandham with Samanthan Kshatriyas,Samanthans,Ambalavaasis,Pushpaka Brahmins,Samanthan Nairs,Kiryathil and Illathu nair tharavads who were matrilineal ..their offsprings were considered as of the mothers caste and not of the fathers ..Yes by early 20th cent the british govt abolished these strange rituals but till then the other castes multiplied and the namboodiri population declined…this is the reason why namboodiri population decreased.

    About the knanayas claiming jews …..Firstly Who is/was a jew ? Jews were/are the followers of the religion of the Southern Kingdom of Israel. Today’s jews we see are least Hebraic and have much European/Khazarian blood in them. But still they are called Jews. Why ? Because the term ‘Jew’ has been generalized for all practicing Judaism, All Jews today are not descendents of ancient Hebrews or Israelites. There were periodic conversions into Judaism from other religions as seen in Ashkenazis who have much of khazarian blood. Judaism was a religion of those of Judah, Benjamin and other Southern tribes. What about the Northern tribes of North Israel ? They were not called Jews atleast till recent times. They had their own kingdom after Solomon’s time. They were just called Hebrew Israelites. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob…. They were never Jews but Hebrews. And after Jacob and his 12 sons came the term ‘Israelite’ was formed.Also the Paradeshi jews are Spanish Jews who later on embraced judaism ,they are not israelites original inhabitant jews .There is a lot more on this topic as equal to indian migration and invasion there was also many invasions and migrations in ancient Israel provinces of today. Even a modern Levite or a Cohen is sometimes believed to be not from the original Levite and Cohen descent.unbelievable right!!
    Ezekiel Rahabi was a Paradesi Jew from Holland / Spain migrated last in the Jewish Diaspora and the ancient jews of Kerala are Cochin Jews/Malabar Yehuden .Most probably Knanaya Thomman was a Jew converted to Christianity (precisely not a jew by belief but an excommunicated jew ) so there was no chance of Knanaya Thomman reporting to the Cochin Jews or chances are there that he is just a Caananite (and not a jew from the lost tribes).Also the direct descendants of Knai Thomman are mixed population …Thekkumbhagars claim that he married from the Northist while Northists claim that he married a washerwoman..now what is the truth God knows.People in many blogs have just messed up on this topic that it is difficult to analyse and conclude .There is A Syrian Christian DNA project going on I recommend that many should join that project to positively conclude a part of the history.DNA kits are available for the same .

  31. Dear Mr.Patrose ,

    I came to know after Appapans post that Mr.Yeshurathnam has a doctorate in history and he is a senior citizen too and I believe that no one can change their beliefs now …And i know that every human has some stress and negatives ,i believe that he had some bitter experiences in his early ages looking at the orthodox and bitter caste rituals in Kerala ..he might have experienced it and later on his subconscious mind would have absorbed and fantasized his experience into first his thinking and later his keen interest in the subject and then having a good academics through which his stress could be relieved off through several blogs during the coarse of time and his photographic memory during his education would have only underlined the opposite of a cultural claim and tradition, which is quiet natural. Some of his points are believable but the majority is just communal,sectarian or because of some caste complexes in him.A historian while commenting/learning/practising/preaching should be neutral without showing any inclination towards anything which results in human errors and personal additions.

  32. Appappan says:

    Dr Ratnam thinks that he is the smartest guy. May be, he is the smartest among his tribe. Dr. Ratnam, I hope you had a good Onam, collecting coconuts and other offerings from the savarna families in your locality. Just google “They ridicule and pooh-pooh these insane claims” and you will see what his intentions are. Dr.Ratnam claims that he “not at all my intention to wound the feelings Appappan, Royal Nasrani et al by presenting the results of my research”. All he quote is from another savarna hater – S.N Sadasivan (an SNDP) and CMS missionary manuals. He claims it to be his research. Is it ? Visit the CSI church website and see what he copied. CMS & all other protestant congregations formed the CSI church. CSI church is a missionary church and not a syrian church. (there are some syrians in it who are in general category and all others enjoys reservation ST,SC,OBC etc). Marthoma church, which is protestant in nature has a significant percent of its followers from new converts. True syrian churches (Syro Chaldean, Syro Malabar, Orthodox & Jacobites) had conversion from lower castes in the 1920s and they are known as Dalit Christians. Converts gained by the portuguese collectively
    form the Latin Catholic church (though vast majority are from the fishermens, they had upper castes and Topaz Christians (indo-Portuguese) as well)

    This potty mouthed ex-pariah is suffering from multiple personality disorder. Other names are Ankita Ashok, Premanand Kurien, Kurien Koshy and Ajit Kurien. Looks like one Mr.Kurien (probably the landlord who owned his..) had done some serious crimes against Dr.Pariah or his aristocratic family. Usually one of these avatars help him with follow-on posts. Dr. Ratnam, I feel sorry for your situation. Sadly we cant fix the past. We have to live with it. I understand how you feel when thinking about the abuses your family had to suffer in the past. I advice you not to give up hope. Hope is everything. Isnt it ? It is a habit of these untouchables (low class converts) to have names like these.

  33. Appappan says:

    Dr. Ratnam claims that his family is elite and illustrious. Wow! Are you saying that your family is elite because you use elite bread ? So those if you use modern bread then your family will become modern. Isnt it ? But his face doesnt cooperate with that claim. Does it ? You are not a Syrian Christian for sure. And you dont belong to the aristocracy.

    Dr. Ratnam, you said
    “Appappan says “As per the rules of the land All offerings to the temple still required to be touched for purification by a Marthoma nasrani. We know what happened to Mercy Ravi’s son when he was taken to a temple. Will the Hindus allow Marthoma nasrani to enter a temple or to bless the temple offerings? What will be the reaction of BJP and Siva Sena of Kerala unit? Tall claim Appappan? You are still living in fools’ paradise.”

    I said about the past as I used “still required”. Did I say “Still require” ? Dont you know about the traditions of Guruvayoor temple ? Have I made any claims about Malabar ?
    He had some good education at the cost of the eligible, taxpaying Savarnas and now he is all out against them. This is why I am against the whole idea of reservations.

    you says “I belong to the school of Participatory History which considers how participatory cultural modalities have democratized historical methodologies. Historians Elsa Barkley Brown and Barbara Fields belong to this category.” – Who are these people ? Never heard about them to be honest. Now about me – Profession – research scientist who specializes in search Algorithms (people like Sergey Brin and Larry Page belongs to this category) and Signal processing algorithms (Dr Sanjay Jha belongs to this category), Alma Mater – Royal College, (Same as Dr. Jha), No of patents 5 held (2 are joint patents). Caste – Syrian Christian, Paternal Root family – Sankarapury – Thekkedathu, Maternal Root family (Pakalomattom). IQ – 152. See, I can boast. Isnt it ?

    You said “While I was browsing on the internet I found in most blogs Syrian Christians are shown as descendants of Nambudiris or Jews. As a student of history, I was curious about this phenomenon and I began to search for historical evidences to support this view.”
    But elsewhere you claims to be a political scientist. You are a scientist I agree. You know how the game in full, how to manipulate. See multiple IDs, Aggregation, Generalization .. very scientific. Isnt it ?
    Take 1. Syrian Christians = 72 Families that arrived in AD 345. How come the population exploded to 200000 in 1154 years ?
    Take 2. Syrian Christians = CSI Christians (CMS, other missionary conversion)
    Take 3. Syrian Christians = Latin Christians
    Take 4. Syrian Christians = Topaz Christians or Anglo Indians

    OOZHIYAM – haaa.. what a menacing madness. you have defiled even the wikimapia pages.

    I have visited your blog. You are a Savarna Hater, an ardent fan of Dr. B.R Ambedkar and Ayyankali. Good. But hatred isnt good. See we cant correct the past.

    And now about your vast circle of friends and club memberships, I know how you get treated at these places with your trademark pariah looks and feel. I can see that you are very fanciful. Even santhosh pandit cant match.

    Dr. Ratnam, You dont deserve that ‘Yeshu’ in your name. People like you are an abomination. Even your photos are polluting. And you are not a jewel. You are a filthy mad dog. A low class idiot who claims to be of the high society. My neighbour has a Bull dog. His back looks far better.
    You are Padmasree Bharat Doctor Kakhus Pandit.

  34. Appappan says:

    Dear Padmasree Bharat Dr.Kakhus pandit,

    The history of Christianity in India: from the commencement of the …, Volume 1 By James Hough

    P318
    “Of all the inhabitants of Malabar the Syrian J Christians are described as the most endowed with every natural gift both of body and mind With respect to person they are generally full grown well proportioned and active They are distinguishable at once from the heathen by their majestic gait Their colour is not so dark as that of the other Indians the brahmins alone excepted”

    P327
    “Notice has already been taken of the privileges granted them by Ceram Peroumal the distinguished prince of Malabar who lived in the 10th century In virtue of these grants the Syrians took precedence of the Naires the nobility of the country and were second only to the brahmins ….princes pay deference The Syrians at one time ranked next to them and were regarded by the laws of the country as the protectors all artizans goldsmiths founders carpenters blacksmiths …. If a heathen struck a Christian he was sentenced to die but was allowed to for his offence by going to the church carrying in his hand an offering of gold or silver according to the quality of the person assaulted”

    P328
    “In their care to maintain their precedence avoided coming in contact with persons of inferior caste and would not touch even a Naire When walking out they frequently raised their voices to give notice of their approach that persons of inferior caste might move out of their way If any one refused to pay them this mark of respect though he were a Naire they are said to have claimed the right of killing him on the spot The Naires though themselves regarded as the nobility and at present forming the chief military force of Malabar yet paid the Christians great deference and esteemed it a high honour to be regarded as their brethren It would be tedious to enumerate all the privileges which the Syrians of former days enjoyed neither is it necessary in this place as there will be frequent occasions to refer to them in the sequel But we may mention one or two which are of sufficient consideration to show that these Christians were formerly almost on a par with their sovereigns They were allowed to have a military force of their own which was composed chiefly of Shanars the caste that cultivates the palm tree Besides the brahmins they were the only inhabitants of the country permitted to have enclosures in front of their houses

    P329
    “They possessed the right of mounting and travelling on elephants a distinction peculiar to them and to the heir apparent of the sovereign They were allowed to sit even on a carpet in presence of the rajah and his ministers of state an honour conceded also to foreign ambassadors During the sixteenth century the rajah of Paru proposed to extend this last named privilege to the Naires in his dominions but the Christians immediately declared war against him if he persevered when conscious of his inabilility to enforce it in opposition to their will he was obliged to leave matters on their ancient footing All these immunities and honours rendered the dignity of their Bishop so considerable that as the Italian missionary Vincent Marie has testified he was as highly esteemed as a king We cannot be surprised therefore at “

  35. Appappan says:

    Dr. Kakhus Pandit,

    I am not some one who cherishes caste/race supremacist fancies. Theoretically I treat everyone equal (even you). Of course there are some difficulties in practice, especially when ever I see hate mongers. You had been whoring around with your CMS history and OOZHIYAM. Havent you ? I saw your posts being on every available web page, even if it doesnt say anything about Syrian christians or even chrisitanity. You have defiled many pages with your filth. Wikimapia of the Sunnahadose church, One Mr. Abhilash Chalakuzhiyil’s blog page which has nothing about Syrian Christian History or heritage, but you had your Ctrl-C+Ctrl-P there as well.

    “Portuguese wanted to Civilze Syrians because they were low caste untouchables”. You are still an untouchable isnt it?

    Dr. Kakhus Pandit, Have you proved anything ? Nothing. Have you disproved anything ? Nothing. Bloody clapping penthy. Grow up and get a life you maggot.

    good night. I wasted few hours for a creature like you.

  36. Yakob says:

    Some people have an axe to grind. The past is important from a historical perspective but how is it going to change what you are now? There are aristocrats (Europe) and royal family descendants (India) who are total jerks. And there are people of low caste who are noble and graceful. Go figure.

  37. A.Yeshuratnam says:

    I note from Appappan’s sado-masochist comments that his adrenaline rush is still intense after reading my comments backed by historical evidences. I laugh at his low ESP skill. His ESP says that I am a Pariah, I am black like a nigger with coarse physical features, and I do not have a good time in the clubs. But I’m not a Pariah, I’m not black and my physical features are quite handsome and my club friends are intimate and the club time is exciting and cheering. I think he is suffering from chronic depression and sleeplessness – and he is attributing his symptoms to me. I note from his comments that he wrote them at 3.35 A.M while I was immersed in sound sleep. He has quoted James Hough: “During the sixteenth century the rajah of Paru proposed to extend this last named privilege to the Naires in his dominions but the Christians immediately declared war against him if he persevered when conscious of his inability to enforce it in opposition to their will he was obliged to leave matters on their ancient footing.” James Hough was misled by Syrian Christians and his knowledge of Kerala History was ridiculous. Not only Hough but many foreign writers, especially missionaries, were given false details by local priests and they have included these points in their books without verifying primary sources. There are two primary sources for the sixteenth century Kerala – 1. The Portuguese Duarte Barbosa and 2. The Arabic history of Zayu al-Din al-Ma’bri. Barbosa lived in Kochi and Kannur between 1500 and 1515. He was completely fluent in Malayalam, and had a singular knowledge of local society. Zayan al-Din resideds in Ponnani. His book is valuable forhe analyzes Malayali society and the social status of his own society from a Muslim point of view. Both the writers have not mentioned about this “rajah of Peru’ and the superior status enjoyed by Christians. James Hough’s book is a hodgepodge of wishful thinking, distortion, exaggeration and fantasy dressed up as historical facts. Not only Appappan’s boastful words contain historical lies, they also manifest mental arrogance and pride. Appappan and Nasrani have not given the correct answer to my two questions:
    1. Who were the Jews who became Christians? Most of the Middle East immigrants in the 1st century were mainly from Persia and they were very few in number. After the coming of the Portuguese, the flow of immigrants was stopped, except stray cases of one or two priests. Kerala Jewish historians, including Koder, do not mention of Christian Jews or Nasrani Jews. The word ‘Nasrani’ was treated with contempt in the early century and was ranked with lower caste untouchables. The Portuguese elevated them by giving government and military posts.
    2. Who were the Nambudiris who became Christians? Why there is no reference Nambudiri conversion in the Nambudiri chronicles?
    The hubris of Nasrani’s presentation of history while refuting my stastical and authentic Census Report of Syrians, Jews and Nambudiris is not merely an affront against historical truth, it is a mischievous manipulation of historical facts to pillage Nambudiri and Jewish descent.
    Appappan thinks that by making personal abuses and using filthy words he can silence me. As a teacher, I have faced many such Appappans. It is only with academic interest that I responded when comments were invited in some blogs. I don’t have time and I will not respond to any more comments. If Appappan continues to make personal abuses, I may have to report to Cybercell.

  38. Royal Nasrani says:

    One thing I want to address to each and every one is – do not hurt anyone personally (no one has to gain or lose anything history is not gonna change by extreme personal insults or abuses) or do not insult/curse anyone with castist/creedist/ or by colour….Counterclaims on ones post is OK.Off topic quarrel will not lead us anywhere. C

  39. Royal Nasrani says:

    Please cooperate.

  40. Dear Mr.Yeshu,
    As I said earlier Syrians are an exclusive community inclusive of all castes and races in social hierarchy.A bifurgation into Brahmins,Jews,Canaanites,Dravidians is not at all possible “now”… today we cannot trace a clear and pure lineage in any castes of india that’s a hidden and bitter truth .The leading families were the authoritative members in the church for many years. The Christians are also called as “Naanaar” or “Naana Jati “…But your claims of “only “ the lower caste conversion is not true ….I know many have joined later into the christian fold may be higher or lower…… the Vellikkada Panicker family,The muthallali families of kollam , Thulassery Manapurathu family claim a later accommodation into the Syrian faiths….which is also supported by many proofs.
    Contrast to the Brahmin theory… now some are doubtful about the Levi or Cohan (Those who performed religious rituals for jews)…(Jews were in Kerala before the Christian Era) .May be the common masses termed Levi/Cohan as “Pandithar”or “Brahminar” etc for the rituals they performed …may be it was a common usage amongst the locals….
    Also I do not believe in the migration of Aryans only in the 7th to 8th century … it is totally against the archeological evidences …namboodiris might have been the latest settlers enmasse no doubt …..but there are strong archeological and literary evidences of Aryan community in the south.
    Vedic & Puranic Culture—Archeological Evidence -Some megalithic burials have yielded iron or bronze objects such as mother goddess, horned masks, the trishul etc. As the archaeologist I. K. Sarma observes, such objects are
    intimately connected with the worship of brahmanical Gods of the historical period, such as oiva, Kàrtikeya and later Ambà. The diadems of Adichanallur burials are like the mouth-pieces used by the devotees of Murugan.
    The archaeologist K. V. Raman also notes :
    Some form of Mother-Goddess worship was prevalent in the Megalithic period […] as suggested by the discovery of a small copper image of a Goddess in the urn-burials of Adichchanallur. More recently, in Megalithic burials the headstone, shaped like the seated Mother, has been located at two places in Tamil Nadu.
    Megalithic culture attached great importance to the cult of the dead and ancestors, which parallels that in Vedic culture. It is also likely that certain gods later absorbed into the Hindu pantheon, such as Aiyanar (or Sastha), Murugan (the later Kartik), Koççavai (Durga), Naga deities, etc., were originally tribal gods of that period. Though probably of later date, certain megalithic sites in the Nilgiris were actually dolmen shrines, some of them holding Ganesh-like images, others lingams. Megalithic practices evocative of later Hinduism are thus summarized by the British archaeologists Bridget and Raymond Allchin :
    The orientation of port-holes and entrances on the cist graves is frequently towards the south. […] This demands comparison with later Indian tradition where south is the quarter of Yama. Among the grave goods, iron is almost universal, and the occasional iron spears and tridents (trisulas) suggest an association with the god øiva. The discovery in one grave of a trident with a wrought-iron buffalo fixed to the shaft is likewise suggestive, for the buffalo is also associated with Yama, and the buffalo demon was slain by the goddess Durgà, consort of øiva, with a trident. […] The picture which we obtain from this evidence, slight as it is, is suggestive of some form of worship of oiva.
    About the third century BC, cities and towns appear owing to yet little understood factors ; exchanges with the Mauryan and Roman empires seem to have played an important catalytic role, as also the advent of iron. From the very beginning, Buddhist, Jain and Hindu streaks are all clear. Among the earliest evidences, a stratigraphic dig by I. K. Sarma within the garbagriha of the Parasuramesvara temple at Gudimallam, brought to light the foundation of a remarkable Shivalingam of the Mauryan period (possibly third century BC) : it was fixed within two circular pãthas at the centre of a square vàstu-mandala. “The deity on the frontal face of the tall linga reveals himself as a proto-puranic Agni-Rudra”devayàna standing on a kneeling . If this early date, which Sarma established on stratigraphic grounds and from pottery sherds, is correct, this fearsome image could well be the earliest such representation in the South.
    The same site also yielded one square copper coin of the early Cholas, depicting on the obverse an elephant, a ritual umbrella, the Srivatsa symbol, and the front portion of a horse. This is in fact an important theme which recurs on many coins of the Sangam age, recovered mostly from river beds near Karur, Madurai etc. Besides the Srivatsa (also found among artefacts at Kanchipuram), many coins depict a swastika, a trishul, a conch, a shadara-chakra, a damaru, a crescent moon, and a sun with four, eight or twelve rays. Quite a few coins clearly show a yagnakunda. That is mostly the case with the Pandyas,Chera ’ coins, some of which also portray a yubastambha to which a horse is tied as part of the ashvamedha sacrifice. As the numismatist R. Krishnamurthy puts it, “The importance of Pandya Chola Chera coins of Vedic sacrifice series lies in the fact that these coins corroborate what we know from Sangam literature about the performance of Vedic sacrifices by a Chera Chola Pandya king of this age.”
    Vedic & Puranic Culture—Literary Evidence -It is unfortunate that the most ancient Sangam compositions are probably lost for ever ; we only know of them through brief quotations in later works. An early text, the Tamil grammar Tolkàppiyam, dated by most scholars to the first or second century AD, is “said to have been modelled on the Sanskrit grammar of the Aindra school.” Its content, says N. Raghunathan, shows that “the great literature of Sanskrit and the work of its grammarians and rhetoricians were well known and provided stimulus to creative writers in Tamil…. The Tolkàppiyam adopts the entire Rasa theory as worked out in the Nàtya øàstra of Bharata.” It also refers to rituals and customs coming from the “Aryans,” a word which in Sangam literature simply means North Indians of Vedic culture ; for instance, the Tolkàppiyam “states definitely that marriage as a sacrament attended with ritual was established in the Tamil country by the Aryas,” and it uses the same eight forms of marriage found in the Dharmashastras. Moreover, it mentions the caste system or “fourfold jathis” in the form of “Brahmins, Kings, Vaishyas and Vellalas,” and calls Vedic mantras “the exalted expression of great sages.”
    The Tolkàppiyam also formulates the captivating division of the Tamil land into five regions (tirai ), each associated with one particular aspect of love, one poetical expression, and also one deity : thus the hills (kurinji ) with union and with Cheyon (Murugan) ; the desert (pàlai ) with separation and Koççavai (Durga) ; the forests (mullai ) with awaiting and Mayon (Vishnu-Krishna) ; the seashore (neytal ) with wailing and Varuna ; and the cultivated lands (marutam) with quarrel and Ventan (Indra). Thus from the beginning we have a fusion of non-Vedic deities (Murugan or Koççavai), Vedic gods (Indra, Varuna) and later Puranic deities such as Vishnu (Màl or Tirumàl). Such a synthesis is quite typical of the Hindu temperament and cannot be the result of an overnight or superficial influence ; it is also as remote as possible from the separateness we are told is at the root of so-called “Dravidian culture.”
    Expectedly, this fusion grows by leaps and bounds in classical Sangam poetry whose composers were Brahmins, princes, merchants, farmers, including a number of women. The “Eight Anthologies” of poetry (or eññuttokai ) abound in references to many gods : Shiva, Uma, Murugan, Vishnu, Lakshmi (named Tiru, which corresponds to ørã) and several other Saktis. The Paripàóal, one of those anthologies, consists almost entirely of devotional poetry to Vishnu. One poem begins with a homage to him and Lakshmi, and goes on to praise Garuda, Shiva on his “majestic bull,” the four-faced Brahma, the twelve âdityas, the Ashwins, the Rudras, the Saptarishis, Indra with his “dreaded thunderbolt,” the devas and asuras, etc., and makes glowing references to the Vedas and Vedic scholars.
    It is a fact that Aryans migrated to the Tamil (Chera,Chola,Pandya) Kingdoms centuries back before the christian era.So the Brahmin conversion into christianity is not a miracle or a fact of wonder as the elites would convert oftenly from saivism to Buddhism and Buddhism to Jainism…Hence a Hindu conversion to christianity was quiet possible back in A.D 52.

  41. And about the No mention of Nasranis in the namboodiri chronicle …i have mentioned previuosly…Do the Namboodiris consider NAMBIDI’S who were namboodiri priorly and later was degraded to Brahma-Kshatriya Caste for taking sword…Why will they accomodate the excommunicated????A Nasrani turned christian is not more than a “Brasht”…so do u think that nasranees would be included in the previous caste once they are excommunicated??

    In konkani Goan conversions you can see
    1.All converts from Brahmin sub-castes such as the Goud Saraswat Brahmins, Padyes, Daivadnyas, etc, were lumped into the Christian caste of “Bamonn”.. 1505 numbers of Brahmin souls were baptised in one session in Divar and they are called as “Bammons” who are Roman catholics….in the 16th cent.
    2.The Charodis are converts from Marattas(Kshatriyas) were baptised en masse in Carambolim, Tiswadi ..almost 700 souls in 25th august 1560 got converted and form the second largest group in the Mangalorean Catholic community.
    Why don’t the the GSBs,Padnyes,Daivadnya Brahmins and Maratta Kshatriyas include them in their chronicles Mr.Yeshurathnam.

  42. CORRECTION:In the above post.. In the 5th row i meant to say “Nasrani turned Brahmin” and not “Nasrani turned Christian”..

  43. TJ says:

    I have been following this spirited and, at times, heated discussion.

    Royal Nasrani, your point is well made: “do not insult/curse anyone with castist/creedist/ or by colour”

    A productive discussion would be to focus on facts as opposed to disparaging people. There may be disagreement on whether there is evidence to support certain facts.

    A. Yeshuratnam re your comment: “His ESP says that I am a Pariah, I am black like a nigger with coarse physical features….”

    You may not be aware of this but your description and the use of what is referred to in the US as the “n word” is offensive and has no place in a civil discussion. It is a word that has historical significance and connotations associated with slavery, segregation and the worst form of discrimination which thankfully is something that is viewed by most Americans as a shameful period in the history of the US. Kindly refrain from the use of such disparaging and offensive language.

    As a general comment, I am amazed at your focus on the antecedents of Syrian Christians and other Christians. In some ways it represents the worst aspects of Indian society. What difference does it make what those antecedents are? Am I any better or worse a human-being if my ancestors were Brahmins or of any other background? Are you any better or worse a human-being if your antecedents are as you claim or were of some other background?

    There is something truly antiquated about your emphasis on this and other forums about your own antecedents versus that of Christians in Kerala or elsewhere – irrespective of whether the facts support your contention or those who disagree with you.

  44. Yes Very True TJ,

    Fathoming the fact, how many agree to the point that the social construction was a trend though gradually and subtly assimilated into castes /creeds /migrations /invasions/intermixing that no one has to be blamed of ….Society demands change and is prone to drastic changes over a period of time…all castes contributed the construction of caste “system” ..some by writting rules, some by implementing, some by unknowingly practicing …everyone are well informed of their ethos they hold ,their differences -similarities and when it solidified into socio cultural boundaries and rules all blame and hate each other …..All are inputs then how do we blame each other for a common output –The System …Everything is a past …India has to grow…So every individual has to improve their development indexes….At last Education is buyable/sellable but what about common sense???…In my views we malayali’s( NRI’s and Residents) should be proud to be people with best HDI’s and in that account only Norway and Australia has overtaken us …So sometimes even in debates one should consider and know the thin line between opposing the views and cheap abusive usage of words .All should debate but related to topic. Counterclaims are informative and ok but should be maintained upto a limit one’s personal prejudices are questioned/hurt . Though we oppose in our views it is unknowingly beneficiary to both the opponents…But when it comes to personal attacks/usage of cheap intolerable words/ it loses its charm. Don’t be off topic.

  45. Dr. Aparna S Menon says:

    I totally agree with Mr. Ratnam. The conversion of Nambudiris by St. Thomas is a total lie propagated by Portuguese missionaries. The origin of Syrian Christianity in Kerala can be traced back to the Western Asian migration somewhere between 7th and 14th century. Since then, the Syrian Christians were a nominal community limited to port towns and coastal areas. Their number never exceeded several thousands until the arrival of European missionaries under whom a large number of Ezhavas and Pulayas were converted to Christian fold. If look closer, we can still see Hindu cultural traces among Syrian Christians of Kerala. If Syrian Christians were Christians for 2000 years as they claim, no such Hindu cultural symbols would not have survived to this date.

  46. Dr. Aparna S Menon says:

    This website is owned by a Panicker Christian family. I just skimmed through this website and found most of the family members still have Hindu names such as Aswati, Vishal, Vivek, Prakash, etc. This is a typical example of a Syrian Christian family. Hindu names are common among Syrian Christians of Kerala. This is because they are recent converts. Here, Panicker should not be confused with Nair Panicker. Nair Panickers are an uppercaste group (Malayala Kshatriya). The Syrian Christian Panickers are converts from Ezhava Panickers. The Syrian Christians of Quilon and Cochin are mainly Ezhava converts while those of regions such as Tiruvalla, Kanjirappally, Mallapally, etc are mostly Pulaya converts. Ezhava Panickers are a special group among Quilon Ezhavas.

  47. Royal Nasrani says:

    Lord Jesus please control my anger do not tempt me ,Don’t let me blame the Indian education system for giving doctorates to people with retarded mindset..Lord please help.

  48. Nasrani’s twisted interpretation of history to justify his spurious claim of Nambudiri and Jewish descent will reveal whose mindset is retarded. Any historian who reads his interpretation of history will understand that he does not have an elementary knowledge of history. Hoe can he question the mindset of a scholar like Aparna S. Menon when she has presented the real facts in Kerala history? Another man in this thread boasts that his caste is “Syrian Christian.” What was his previous caste? In Hindu India all were Hindus before other religions came to India. What was the previous caste of this Syrian Christian? He cannot say that he was a Nambudiri, for Nambudiris will never take him into their fold. He cannot say that he was a Jew, for Jews will never give him a place in their community. The reality of the situation is that he was an untouchable, for Nairs won’t embrace Christanity.

  49. Appappan says:

    Dear Royalji,

    Looks like you too have fallen in to his traps. Please have the ESP skills to realise that Dr.Aparna S Menon is not a living being, but another yet another imposter, a fake id of Dr. Kakhus Pandit. It seemed to me that you people didnt believe what I said about his game. See Ajit Kurien, Kurien Koshy, Premanand Kurien, (see that all are Kuriens, not Kurian which the right form – Cherian is Cheriyakov, ie the second Jacob among the disciples which is also Kuncherian or Kurian), Ankita Ashok, and Dr. Aparna S Menon are his fake ids. If you search these names with ‘Syrian’ you will see their relation with Dr. Kakhus Pandit. There doesnt exist a doctor with the name Dr. Aparna S menon.

    Again see the logic of both the doctors – “most of the family members still have Hindu names such as Aswati, Vishal, Vivek, Prakash, etc.This is a typical example of a Syrian Christian family. Hindu names are common among Syrian Christians of Kerala. This is because they are recent converts.”. This is congruent with the earlier observation of Dr. Kakhus Pandit that Syrians are Pariah converts as only Pariahs used to consume beef.

    So If Dr.KP puts on a western dress his ancestors would automatically become Europeans. Dr.KP doesnt know about the history of the Panicker family, for they were the Commanders of the Vadakankoor army. They were from Chola, not any ezhava paniker.

    See the transfigurations happening to Dr.KP – If on one day he is a student he reincarnates himself in to a scientist the next day and the very next day he becomes a teacher.

    He cleverly suggests that “If Syrian Christians were Christians for 2000 years as they claim, no such Hindu cultural symbols would not have survived to this date.” where as the present Hindu culture evolved only after Sankaracharya, the man he hates the most.

    Dr. Kakhus Pandit also suggests that “Since then, the Syrian Christians were a nominal community limited to port towns and coastal areas.” – And you knows about the costal towns and villages in Kerala – Kuravilangadu, Pala, Athirampuzha, Aruvithura, Arakuzha, Mylacombu, Thodupuzha, Kadamattom,.. the list goes on.

    He continues “Their number never exceeded several thousands until the arrival of European missionaries under whom a large number of Ezhavas and Pulayas were converted to Christian fold” – Untrue when taken as a whole, but made of 2 half truths
    1. True, but their number never exceeded 200 thousand to be precise(you can legitimately use ‘several’ if you only have a coarse figure of approximately 200)
    2.True, Large number of Ezhavas and Pulayas were converted to christian fold, i.e to the protestant Christianity to be precise.
    But see the generalization applied here

    And he is suggesting that I have low ESP skills “I laugh at his low ESP skill. His ESP says that I am a Pariah, I am black like a nigger with coarse physical features, and I do not have a good time in the clubs. But I’m not a Pariah, I’m not black and my physical features are quite handsome and my club friends are intimate and the club time is exciting and cheering.” So I should disbelieve my eyes, is what he suggests. Yeah! I too agree now. He looks like Rahul Gandhi or John Abraham to be honest. Poor me! low ESP skills. (These kind of clubs are a trend these days. Many people visit with their family for good food. Especially in areas like Vaikom, kumarakom. And the Kallu, Kappa, Liver, Konchu, Karimeen are all nice, but children find it difficult to finish as too hot & spicy)

    He didnt stop there and goes on to suggest that “I think he is suffering from chronic depression and sleeplessness – and he is attributing his symptoms to me. I note from his comments that he wrote them at 3.35 A.M while I was immersed in sound sleep.”. May be he doesnt know that the Earth is revolving around the Sun and that there are other places on this planet. But he has accused me of having a mental illness. You knows what happened when Mohanlal suggested that Dr.Azheekod is suffering from Hallucinations ?.

    Dr. KP suggests that “James Hough was misled by Syrian Christians and his knowledge of Kerala History was ridiculous. Not only Hough but many foreign writers, especially missionaries, were given false details by local priests and they have included these points in their books without verifying primary sources.”.
    I would have agreed to this view had it been about his ’eminent scholar’ S.N Sadasivan or the much acclaimed penthal historian Abbe J Dubois.
    SN Sadasivan’s claims are already reaching the mars.

    See how well informed was AJ Dubois (AJ Dubious??) It reads on page 29 “the mischievous Hindoo deities Cohly Mahry Darma rajah and other infernal gods whose wrath cannot be appeased but by the shedding of blood and the immolating of living victims ”

    I asked about this “So Dharma Rajah was a blood thirst hindu deity ? I thought he was the King of Travancore Rama Varma ? The authenticity of this book is evident from this.” and he had no replies. If you dont know the king, how would you know the subjects ?

    This ill informed idiot writes about the Puthenkoot, not the Pazhayakoot (who are clearly mentioned as Romo Syrians). The fact is that Thachil Mathoo Tharakan (after King Balarama Varma had sworn in) had tried to persecute the Puthenkoot Syrians and they were severely persecuted by Mathoo Tharakan and the Kings of Cochin & Travancore stood with Mathoo tharakan and sadly history is only written by the winner. (Read Nirananm Grandhavari on the Puthenkoot views about Mathoo Tharakan)

    DR. KP is completely silent on my question “Was it not around the same period that Sakthan Tampuran settled scores of Syrian families in Trissur ? ”

    He claims that Velu thampi (an ordinary Nair) knew who Mathoo tharakans past. But Snakaran Namboothiri didnt knew for sure!! and neither did the kings. Mathoo tharakan’s ears were chopped of at a revolt by Hindus at Anjuthengu as Tharakan had imposed heavy taxes and penalties and Velu Thampi had him imprisoned. But soon the King on repenting had gifted him golden ears. And we all know what happened to Velu thampi.

    Dr. Kakhus Pandit says “In the Kundara Proclamation Velu Thampy refers to Christians as ‘low caste people’,’put up crosses and Christian flags in pagodas.. .”

    I have read the whole edict, but couldnt find this anywhere. Velu thampi says the “British put up crosses and Christian flags in pagodas.. .”. See how he is doctoring and manipulating historical facts for his own convenience. How he is using generalization for his own causes.

    “The dreadful massacre of Syrian Christians was conducted by one Kunju Kutty Pillai on the orders of Velu Thampy. 9 Syrian priests and upwards of 3000 Syrian Christians, men, women and children were maimed, tortured, butchered and thrown into the backwater.”
    Another exaggeration and generalization. For Dr.KP every convert christian is a Syrian Christian (Andy only them). See how he is manufacturing stories and putting up as historical facts. ?

    “rajah of Peru” is the Rajah of Paraur. But DR.KP’s small brain isnt smart enough to understand that.

    Barbosa mentions the Kingdom of Calicut, its people and customs in detail, but not any other. When you are searching for some thing, shouldnt you search where you are likely to find it.

    He asks a clever question on who were these jews and brahmins. Before answering that would you please give us a list of those pariahs who were converted to be syrian Christians, or their tharavads If you are so sure about them ? I have already mentioned my ancestral details, what about your goodself Dr. Kakhus ? When I asked him about his elite & illustrious family’s background he has nothing to say.

    He says “It is only with academic interest that I responded when comments were invited in some blogs.”

    I dont see anyone inviting any comments in the Sunahadose Church Kochi of wikimapia. Neither could I find any comments being invited at abhilashchalakuzhy.blogspot.com on the temple treasure, except on the temple treasure. And there werent any talk about Syrian Christians or their Caste status on majority of these blogs/web pages.

    His intentions are distortion of historical facts for relieving his long held egos and feeding his sycophancy. All these amount to libel, not just on me, but 3.3 Million of us.

    And by issuing a “Cyber Cell” Ummakki he has managed to silenced me, while continuing the abuse on my ancestors who lived a peaceful and prosperous life being dignified human beings. Have I said anything wrong ? Have I made any personal abuses, except merely stating the facts about his appearance and his likely status in the society, based on the research that I did on his background ? I believe I was right to call you a maggot as you have evidently been spreading filth about my community with malice, with ulterior motives. I believe this amounts to libel.

    Using multiple Ids means you have faked ids for people with similar names. This is identity theft, punishable under IPC. See who is going to cyber cell and who will be going to the prison cell.

    Be careful when you continue this game Dr. Kakhus Pandit, I warn you.

  50. Appappan says:

    Tvm: A Blogger who has been spreading a hate campaign against the Nair community through his blog has been arrested by the Kerala Police on the basis of a complaint given by the NSS General Secretary P K Narayana Panicker.

    37 years old K V Shine of Turavoor, near Chertala, who is working as an L D Clerk at the Technical School in Ernakulum was arrested today and produced at the First Class Judicial Magistrate’s Court in Changanaserry. He was later released on bail.

    Shine had created the Vichitra Keralam blog (http://vichitrakerala.blogspot.com) under the pseudonym George Joseph on 14.01.2010 using the email id kunnaamya @ gmail.com. Several articles denigrating the Nair community especially the Nair women were posted on the blog. The posts were intended to create a negative public sentiment against the powerful Nair community in Kerala.

    A case was registered in the Cyber Police Station following a preliminary investigation by the Hi Tech Cell of Kerala Police based on the complaint. The Cyber Police took Google’s help to get the login details for the blog and and the culprit was tracked based on the IP and MAC Address. The computer with the hard disk and modem has been confiscated from his house.

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