Evolution Theory

How often we dream about how our life partner will be? Each one of us has an idea of the nature of the person with whom you would lead a happy life. We all believe, we are the right judge when it comes to choosing your spouse. Yet in the past, people settled for arranged marriages. Ever thought why? Well I thought about it a lot. Here is my theory behind this.

In olden days, when people used to get married at a very young age, they didnt have much idea about what kind of life partner they want. So it was ideal for the elders to find a match for them. Thus came the tradition of arranged marriages. Elders, who have much more knowledge about the society in which we shall live, found the best life partner who could blend with the society. Girls from the same caste knew the traditions that are followed and could carry forward all the customs even at her in laws. A girl from the same caste suited the family in a better way and helped the man of the house in his profession. (Remember the society was divided into caste based on occupation.) Hence came the idea of marriages in the same caste.

This gives an idea of the evolution of customs and traditions and arranged marriages. Let us try to throw some light on why this evolution of society actually happened. Imagine a society, where there were no caste and religion. All that would have existed was the barbaric nature of animals. As people started thinking of living together, all that would have existed was love marriages. Everybody was free to live with whoever they want. It can be assumed that women being weaker were given lesser option and were more controlled by men. But with their seductive nature, women would have retained some amount of control over men. But sooner or later, people would have started creating their own ways of living. They would have identified their skills and the society started framing according to the occupation and skill set one has. As the society grew, people of different occupation started having different ways of living and communities were formed. Each community was assigned a specific purpose in the society. Each had its own life style and rituals.

Rituals are actually derived from our life styles. Apart from our daily routine, there are some activities for each community that they perform once in a year or sometimes once in a lifetime. These activities when continued in similar fashion for years it became what is known today as traditions. All traditions started with a purpose and were followed because people believed it has been created with some purpose. Nobody had the sense and sensibility to question their integrity. "Why such and such thing is performed?" So they believed in them assuming that those who created it would have sense to do so. Thus all traditions (which some of us may call superstitions) began to exist.

Rituals were different for different communities depending upon the amount of time and energy they could spend on that. With the rituals came religions. The first form of worship was that of Nature and there was only one religion. Everybody was afraid of Mother Nature and started worshipping it for their welfare. This was the birth of brahmins. Those who were extremely intellectual and had the power to decipher the forces of Nature were the first brahmins who came into existence. Their primary job was to understand the Nature and try to create ways to avoid the wrath of Nature. The brahmins after years of observations, devised means of worship (say functions) which when performed on certain days under certain circumstances started doing good for the mankind. This was the birth of science. Process of Observation and Experimentation in order to propose a theory of Sequence of Actions to be performed.

A few more words about Brahmins, as I am one of them. As mentioned earlier, the job of Brahmins was to work for the welfare of the society. They used to do 'tapasya' in the forests and mountains in order to understand the forces of Nature. From the 'tapasya' done in solitude, they started comprehending the strength of Nature and the celestial bodies. They used to observe the change of seasons with respect to the movement of stars and planes. This was later termed as astronomy. The Sages performed 'yagnas' and tried to create an atmosphere which was more enriched and free from germs. These 'yagnas' lay the foundation for mathematics (trigonometry, Arithematic, Number system) and chemistry (What is produced when few things are mixed). During the 'tapasya' the sages used to feed themselves with leaves and fruits available in the forest. Thus they started realising the medicinal effects of each of the trees and plants. They even experienced the difference in their health when they were amidst certain trees. These observations were translated to alchemy and hence medicine. And as a result of these 'tapasyas' the sages realised the Nature and encoded them into what are called Vedas. (This statement is an assumption by me. I dont have any proof for this)

Coming back to the process of evolution, each community had its own belief and started practicing it with more fervour. They knew that the beliefs they had were the best suited for their occupation as that was the prime motive of division of the society. Just as we devise new tools that will help in our job, the rituals and traditions were devised as tools. They were assumed as the basic tools needed to enhance your knowledge in the respective field and the tools needed for one's survival. So it was an evolution towards betterment that created caste/religion/beliefs etc. It created a structure for the society. Having said that traditions exist, the next step was the best way to preserve them. The only way to preserve the traditions were to imbibe them in their next generations right from childhood. When a child was born he was taught of the basics of the family occupation (as they would carry the genes and was proved from experience that they will surely excel in the same occupation) and the traditions to be followed. Children were moulded such that they remained within the boundations of their community and were made to marry within the community. This ensured that both bride and groom were aware of the traditions to be followed.

I am sure people would have tried marrying others during the initial stages of the development of the caste system. Some would have succeeded. But many of them failed as the need at that time was to enhance your skills in the occupation by following the traditions. So people started fearing marriages which are outside the community. Then laws were created to restrain people from marrying outside the community and from choosing an occupation other than their family occupation.

Now coming to how to choose a person within the community itself. There again came the proces of observation. People (especially brahmins who were the ones with best observation capabilities at that time) started noticing character of a person and started associating it with the time of birth. Time of birth was notes as the position of stars and the branch of astrology started. A pattern was identified with relative positions of stars, during the time of birth, and the nature of the person and the way his life turned out. This was dependent on the life style of the people. And from surveys it was found that people of nature X (born under the star A) lived happily and were successful with people of nature Y (born under the star B). So astrology started playing huge role in deciding the perfect couple. The match between the souls were captured in the pattern of stars. So what we now advocate about having matched minds was laid out as calculations. And people without even seeing each other before marriage were very happy living together after marriage. This was purely experimental and depended on the circumstances of living. Hence it was a probabilistic approach.

Thus the evolution theory described above establishes the fact that arranged marriage, within same caste, by the use of horoscopes is an inference from the experiments and survey done by people over millions of years. And as is well known in probability theory, the probability of success approaches the actual value if the experiment is conducted sufficiently large number of times. Hence in this case of marriages, the probability of success predicted by horoscopes should be sufficiently close to what will happen.
But we forgot one important point here. It is that the probability predicted by horoscopes is a conditional probability. ie. probability of success given that the life style remain the same.

So what should be done in modern times when the life styles have change?

Let us all think about it before deciding our future. How can we modify/use the existing theory of horoscopes in our present day life? What all additions/deletions to our traditions is needed to make this theory more predictable and make our own lives more happy and successful?


Anonymous said…
That last part was an excellent application of probability theory. Human nature is one thing with so many rnadom variables that it is well beyond the scope of genaralized theory.

VG ur instructor wud be proud of this.

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