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As a consequence of the recent activities and utterances of the aggressive forces of Hinduism (or Hindutva), the twin issues of religion and identity are at the forefront of social and political discourse in India. This has also led to a growing interest in Buddhism and a reconsideration of the role of Christianity and Islam in India as well as given rise to a far-reaching reassessment of the cultural, spiritual and artistic heritage of the subcontinent.
This fascinating book constitutes a unique exploration of 2,500 years of the development of Buddhism, Brahmanism and caste in India, taking Dr Ambedkar`s interpretation of Buddhism as its starting point. Providing an entirely new interpretation of the origins and development of the caste system, which boldly challenges the `Hindutva` version of history, this book will attract a wide readership among all those who are concerned with the state of contemporary India`s polity and social fabric.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Reconstructing the World
The Background to Buddhism
The Dhamma: The Basic Teachings of Buddhism
Transitoriness and Transformations
The Defeat of Buddhism in India
After Buddhism: The Bhakti Movement
Colonial Challenges, Indian Responses and Buddhist Revival
Navayana Buddhism and the Modern Age