M A T R I A R C H A L   P E O P L E S   I N   I N D I A 


In prehistoric India there was yet another technologically and culturally unbelievably advanced  culture, namely the Harappa culture in the Indus Valley in the northwestern corner of India on the border to Pakistan, whose dating archaeologists recently have had to set back with no less than 3000 years. From being assumed to have begun about 5000 years ago, recent findings and measurement methods have shown that the oldest findings from this culture are approximately 8000 years old.

Here, there was almost like a modern welfare society regarding the amenities of the accommodation with running water and baths in all apartments and in this article: it is claimed  that this would have been unique to this culture at this time. People also seemed to have lived an easy life with lots of games and leisure, according to what the artifacts that the archaeologists have excavated, have revealed..

It is further claimed that this culture would be even older than Mesopotamian and Egyptian and thus the oldest in the world, which one may treat with caution. In Old Europe there was also a highly developed culture that we can never hear about, which had already begun 8-9000 years ago. And you never know which will be a new finding in the sense. Perhaps they will find yet mor ancient cultures under the sand in the Sahara desert?

Not surprisingly there is a great deal of disagreement about most things in this culture, as it abundantly clear reveals the same matriarchal foundation as all the other prehistoric high cultures, such as around 3500-1500 B.C. came to be invaded by aggressive colonialist patriarchal warriors from the northeast who also painted this flourishing high culture into gravel and ash. There are many signs that it had to meet the same fate as other matriarchal high cultures at the same time, being invaded by warrior Aryans and forced to convert to their patriarchal Vedda-related religion, which eventually transformed into the Brahamism, which imposed on the former matriarchal peaceful and egalitarian groups of indigenous Indians, the s.c "Dravidians" (many of which demonstrate religious and linguistic relatives with the West Africans) its strong hierarchical spinning and misogynamic treatment of women, not least through the horrendous practice of burning widows alive together with their men's bodies.

Beyond these circumstances there was also a case of major nature disasters in the whole area that might be associated with those who hit the Cretan high culture around 1500 BC, which may have helped to worsen the situation by making a lot of people homeless as then formed the same kind of destructive activity as today by modern-day´s ISIS warriors.


A young Nayar woman from the beginning of the 20th century

No-where in the world has patriarchal hierarchy permated a society more completely than in India. And although the idea of egalitarianism is crucial for the matriarchal ideology, and therefore makes up a real contrast to the superimposed misogyne caste system of the Brahmins, there are quite a few peoples in India who stubbonly up until modern times have struggled for to retain their matriarchal traditions of wich the most famous are the Nayar  i Kerala, Khasi and Garo in Assam and the forestliving hunter and gatherer Vedda-poeoples who nowadays are almost totally extinguished But in the most remote areas of the wild forests in India  there are miljons of other still matriarchal peoples who all of them are more or less threatened by the increasing invasion of commersial expropriation of their realms.

These peoples have never developed hierarchies of occupation in which some activities are seen as more important than others. Instead these features are typical for patriarchy. And in India the Hinduism has imposed these fundamental building blocks on the former matriarchal peoples in a way that makes their situation unbearable. But still, surprisingly enough, there areas we shall see quite a few matriarchies or peoples with matriarchal features, who up until today have succeeded to get away from the threats to their culture, using the strategy of mobility or avoidance.

2) The Strategy of Avoidance and Mobility

Quoting Heide Göttner Abendroth in her extended work, translated into English; Matriarchal Societies: Studies on Indigenous Cultures Across the Globe, 2012,

"After the destruction of the Indus Culture, many people with matriarchal traditions had to flee the aggressive Aryans by migrating south in their ships seeking a new motherland. Along the west coast refugees reached South India including, in its southwestern corner, the region of Kerala. Kerala forms the southern portion the Malabar coast, with its heavenly, luxurious landscapes, sharply cut off by the Western Ghats from the rest of the country. This region with all its peoples and castes, is characterised by many matriarchal elements, including various degrees of matrimony or matriarchy, even today. The most well known of these peoples are the Nayar.

The refugees of the Indus culture also fled into the Himalayas, and along the great river Ganges - whose tributaries nearly reach those of the Indus - and made their way to Ganges Delta in East India. There they encountered other matriarchal cultures: those from the Tibetan-Burmese peoples from the east, whose origins lay in the Sino Tibetan highlands at the headwaters of the great East Asian waterways. They spoke ancient Austro-Asian languages still used by the matriarchal Khasi and Garo peoples in the Khasi Mountains in East India, as well as by scattered groups in eastern central India. They are the last outposts of the migrations of matriarchal cultures of East Asia, while the refugees of the Indus Culture are the last outposts of the migration of the matriarchal river culture of West Asia. In India the two migratory cultural movements met.

It is remarkable that even today, the densest concentration of matriarchal cultural elements is in South India, as the Malabar coast, in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka regions, as well as in East India in the Ganges Delta and the Khasi Hills. (See map!) It is no coincident that precisely in these same places the largest and most important cities; Calcutta (Kali-kutta) in the Ganges delta and Calicut at the Malabar coast bear the name of the ancient Goddess Kali, the pre-Indo-European deity who never became completely Hindu."

Thereafter Heide Göttner Abendroth makes a report of the following events  during the millennia, to which I will return  later and how several waves of invaders forced the Nayar people to become warriors in order to defend themselves.

Nayar Indien 2 1