Q: The ancient civilization in Indian sub-continent differed from those of Egypt, Mesopotamia and Greece in that its culture and traditions have been preserved without a breakdown to the present day. Comment.
- Many great cultures had developed in different countries and regions of the world. Many of them have perished or have been replaced by other cultures.
- However Indian culture has had an enduring character. Despite major changes and upheavals significant threads of continuity can be traced throughout the course of Indian history right upto the present day.
- Some aspects of Harappan culture are still practised, such as, the worshipping of Mother Goddess and Pashupati. Similarly, Vedic, Buddhist, Jain and many other traditions continue to be followed even today. Hence the continuity and change in our civilization has gone hand in hand. In fact, a remarkable feature of Indian culture is that along with continuity it has kept on changing, whereas the basic spirit of our culture continued. It has kept on discarding what was becoming irrelevant in the modern age.
- As a result, movements have grown and reforms brought about. The reform movements in the Vedic religion brought about by Jainism and Buddhism in sixth century BC and the religious and social awakening in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in modern India are a few examples when revolutionary changes were brought about in Indian thought and practices. Yet the thread of basic philosophy of Indian culture continued and still persists.
- Further all these civilizations except of India had institutional slavery, whereas India lacked any such exploitative system at large scale. Though, it had social outcasts and untouchables, but even their status was much better than slaves elsewhere. This, institution also became the reason for downfall for the great civilizations like Egypt and Mesopotamia.
- Thus, due to all these features Indian civilization continued without break.