And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. - Matthew 19:24
Religion is for man and not man for religion – Babasaheb Dr. Ambedkar
They say that an individual's identity is like an onion. That there are many layers, and each layer represents a discrete part of the whole. Firstly, is the individual an acceptable level of social granularity? Secondly, how well does the 'onion' metaphor apply in the context of India's caste society?
Growing up in a Methodist (Christian, Protestant mission started by American missionaries) family in semi-urban North Karnataka in the 90s is, for me, an interesting case study of myself. The journey from a semi-urban environment to the urban sprawl of Bangalore, provides some vital clues to how caste and class operate in society. The church would naturally be the first place to look, but careful historical erasure by the church bangs the door shut on any historical context that can help me to answer the questions above. It is only with some scratched shavings collected from history that I have been able to find a context to my own onion. Whether the onion really exists, or not, is not of our concern right now. For many of my Dalit brothers and sisters, this documentation is not available. I have been fortunate indeed to have access to information about these histories, albeit through the racializing gaze of the colonizer.