Failure of Islam in attracting Upper Castes of India.

Sep 2017
91
Bharatvarsh
so today my Son asked me one simple question regarding History of India and i had no answer of his simple question.

why Islam failed in Converting Upper Castes of India ? while Buddhism was mostly targeted toward Brahmins and Kshatriya castes and Jainaism was for Kshatriya and Vaishya castes we see that Islam was only Able to get converts from nomadic tribes and sudra class of Medieval Indian society.

upon realizing this now i am also wondering why Islam failed in getting it's share of upper crust of Indian society. only token Community of Brahmin and kshatriya castes are actually converts from these clans and they were converted by force. while majority of Converts are actually From Sudra clans such as Dalits and Haijans (who claim upper class origins from all Islamic people), Nomandic communities such as Jatts, Gujjars, Arians, Awans etc. or tokan Baniya community such as khatriyas and patels.

when we look at other Regions we can see that most of Religions that are native to this land or came from outside such as Greek religion, Buddhaism, Jainaism and even Sikhism have majority converts from elites castes of Brahmin or kshatriya. even Brahmins used to worship Greek gods such as Hercules in Ancient time so i dont think that it is Dharmic Religion vs other religion thing.


why Islam failed in getting it's share of converts from upper Castes of Indian Society ? why Brahmins and Kshatriyas saw Islam with extreme Hate when both have adopted religion of invading greeks earlier ?







note : Majority of Muslims of both India and Pakistan are from Sudra origins, major castes of Pakistan are Jats, Gujjars and kaamis(dalits). upon division of India majority of Muhajirs registered as Sayyeds to get higher status in their new country.

during British raj majority of Nomadic Tribes also claimed Rajput origins for higher status. same with kashmiri muslims, most of Kashmiri muslims have adopted title Bhat (Brahmin) surname to get more social prestige. so unless they are of Iranic origin, take their claim of being one of them with pinch of sault.
 

Aupmanyav

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
5,754
New Delhi, India
note : Majority of Muslims of both India and Pakistan are from Sudra origins, major castes of Pakistan are Jats, Gujjars and kaamis(dalits).
A loaded question that can soon degenerate to acrimony if not considered from the historical view-point.

Muslims in the sub-continents are from all castes and not just Shudras. A lot of Kshatriyas and Vaishyas converted to Islam under the influence of Sufi saints or due to coercion. I can't think of the reasons but many Kashmiri brahmins also accepted Islam. Of those about whom we know the family history, the families of Sir Saifuddin Kitchlew, Pakistan's National Poet Mohammad Iqbal, Sheikh Abdullah, Saadat Hasan Manto, Nawaz Sharief, the current Foreign Minister of Pakistan Khawaja Mohammad Asif, former Finance Minister of Pakistan Muhammad Ishaq Dar, etc. were converts.

Kashmiri Muslims with Hindu ancestry: Bhat, Butt, Dhar, Dar, Lone, Mantu, Ganai, Tantre, Mattoo, Pandit, Rather, Sapru, Magre, Magray, Yatoo, Munshi.
 
Sep 2017
91
Bharatvarsh
A loaded question that can soon degenerate to acrimony if not considered from the historical view-point.

Muslims in the sub-continents are from all castes and not just Shudras. A lot of Kshatriyas and Vaishyas converted to Islam under the influence of Sufi saints or due to coercion. I can't think of the reasons but many Kashmiri brahmins also accepted Islam. Of those about whom we know the family history, the families of Sir Saifuddin Kitchlew, Pakistan's National Poet Mohammad Iqbal, Sheikh Abdullah, Saadat Hasan Manto, Nawaz Sharief, the current Foreign Minister of Pakistan Khawaja Mohammad Asif, former Finance Minister of Pakistan Muhammad Ishaq Dar, etc. were converts.

Kashmiri Muslims with Hindu ancestry: Bhat, Butt, Dhar, Dar, Lone, Mantu, Ganai, Tantre, Mattoo, Pandit, Rather, Sapru, Magre, Magray, Yatoo, Munshi.
agreed, i have faith in degree of civilization in the members of this forum. when we talk about history, we have to talk about some uncomfortable historic Topics as well.

we all know that majoirty of kashmiri Pandits and non pandits are converts to Islam via sufi saints. i was talking about over all south Asia not just Kashmir.

when we look at whole south Asia, my points stand correct that Islam was not able to Receive converts from upper Crust of Indian Society in Large Numbers.unless people of those castes are Forced on sword, of course.

here we are discussing, why ?
 

rvsakhadeo

Ad Honorem
Sep 2012
9,222
India
Islam in India is rooted in the rejection of Hinduism, call it a form of hatred of Hinduism. The ego of persons in the backward castes ( but not tribes, please note ) was already hurt because of many unjust, nonsensical practices like untouchability. It was an attraction to these people who were willing converts to Islam, at least in the times of the Muslim rulers. The new converts were suddenly elevated to being a part of the ruling set-up from being the dregs of Hindu society. So a lot of enthusiasm was there in these converts. Why even Dr. Ambedkar, a learned and knowledgeable person, stated openly , when converting himself to Buddhism, that though he was born a Hindu, he will not die as a Hindu !
Not rocket science really !
 
Sep 2017
91
Bharatvarsh
Islam in India is rooted in the rejection of Hinduism, call it a form of hatred of Hinduism. The ego of persons in the backward castes ( but not tribes, please note ) was already hurt because of many unjust, nonsensical practices like untouchability. It was an attraction to these people who were willing converts to Islam, at least in the times of the Muslim rulers. The new converts were suddenly elevated to being a part of the ruling set-up from being the dregs of Hindu society. So a lot of enthusiasm was there in these converts. Why even Dr. Ambedkar, a learned and knowledgeable person, stated openly , when converting himself to Buddhism, that though he was born a Hindu, he will not die as a Hindu !
Not rocket science really !
Indian muslims were not part of ruling class actually, sure they were given some benefits but invaders saw them as inferior race of people.

there are some turks who wrote that Muslims need Caste system to keep purity of the blood like hindus and they did created Caste system of ashraf and Ajalf Muslim communities.
 

rvsakhadeo

Ad Honorem
Sep 2012
9,222
India
Indian muslims were not part of ruling class actually, sure they were given some benefits but invaders saw them as inferior race of people.

there are some turks who wrote that Muslims need Caste system to keep purity of the blood like hindus and they did created Caste system of ashraf and Ajalf Muslim communities.
You may be right there but even then I guess that these converts still felt happy in leaving Hinduism. And therein lies the reason. They could now look down upon the upper castes !
 

Tulun

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
3,862
Western Eurasia
aren't Bohras and Khojas are mostly from vaishya caste origin? For Brahmins as a "pagan" priestly caste it would be loss of social status for them once they convert, since there in islam they could no longer enjoy the sacral religious role.
 

kandal

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
2,783
USA
Hinduism, more specifically Vedic Hinduism, as practiced, was pretty much the religion of the upper three castes. They made up only about 10% of the population, and lived a life of privilege well protected by Hindu laws. The rest 90% were of Sudra caste or below or tribals. Their Hinduism was different. They were the victims of the Vedic Hinduism, living under some of the most despicable religious laws ever created by man. They were always a people with open and accommodative attitudes, and culture. They would have approached Islam with that mindset. In addition becoming Muslim also offered a way out of religious discrimination.

If just 10% of the converts to Islam could trace their lineages to upper castes, then one could say Islam attracted everyone equally regardless of caste origins. That was not the case it seems. If upper castes converted to Islam, an egalitarian religion, they would have lost their coveted privileged social status. In a caste ridden society that loss would have been terrible. So the caste conscious ones would not have gone for conversions, unless coerced.

The situation has not changed much even today. Hindu lower castes remain open to conversions. Laws have been introduced, as a result of upper caste propaganda, that put various restrictions on conversions into other religions.
 
Last edited:
Sep 2015
479
Pakistan
so today my Son asked me one simple question regarding History of India and i had no answer of his simple question.

why Islam failed in Converting Upper Castes of India ? while Buddhism was mostly targeted toward Brahmins and Kshatriya castes and Jainaism was for Kshatriya and Vaishya castes we see that Islam was only Able to get converts from nomadic tribes and sudra class of Medieval Indian society.

upon realizing this now i am also wondering why Islam failed in getting it's share of upper crust of Indian society. only token Community of Brahmin and kshatriya castes are actually converts from these clans and they were converted by force. while majority of Converts are actually From Sudra clans such as Dalits and Haijans (who claim upper class origins from all Islamic people), Nomandic communities such as Jatts, Gujjars, Arians, Awans etc. or tokan Baniya community such as khatriyas and patels.

when we look at other Regions we can see that most of Religions that are native to this land or came from outside such as Greek religion, Buddhaism, Jainaism and even Sikhism have majority converts from elites castes of Brahmin or kshatriya. even Brahmins used to worship Greek gods such as Hercules in Ancient time so i dont think that it is Dharmic Religion vs other religion thing.


why Islam failed in getting it's share of converts from upper Castes of Indian Society ? why Brahmins and Kshatriyas saw Islam with extreme Hate when both have adopted religion of invading greeks earlier ?


note : Majority of Muslims of both India and Pakistan are from Sudra origins, major castes of Pakistan are Jats, Gujjars and kaamis(dalits). upon division of India majority of Muhajirs registered as Sayyeds to get higher status in their new country.

during British raj majority of Nomadic Tribes also claimed Rajput origins for higher status. same with kashmiri muslims, most of Kashmiri muslims have adopted title Bhat (Brahmin) surname to get more social prestige. so unless they are of Iranic origin, take their claim of being one of them with pinch of sault.
Large numbers of original vedic aryan decedents converted and current day so called high caste hindus are more like original aboriginals. We should take claims of hindu kashrtiyas with pinch of salt.
 
Dec 2009
578
so today my Son asked me one simple question regarding History of India and i had no answer of his simple question.

why Islam failed in Converting Upper Castes of India ? while Buddhism was mostly targeted toward Brahmins and Kshatriya castes and Jainaism was for Kshatriya and Vaishya castes we see that Islam was only Able to get converts from nomadic tribes and sudra class of Medieval Indian society.

upon realizing this now i am also wondering why Islam failed in getting it's share of upper crust of Indian society. only token Community of Brahmin and kshatriya castes are actually converts from these clans and they were converted by force. while majority of Converts are actually From Sudra clans such as Dalits and Haijans (who claim upper class origins from all Islamic people), Nomandic communities such as Jatts, Gujjars, Arians, Awans etc. or tokan Baniya community such as khatriyas and patels.

when we look at other Regions we can see that most of Religions that are native to this land or came from outside such as Greek religion, Buddhaism, Jainaism and even Sikhism have majority converts from elites castes of Brahmin or kshatriya. even Brahmins used to worship Greek gods such as Hercules in Ancient time so i dont think that it is Dharmic Religion vs other religion thing.


why Islam failed in getting it's share of converts from upper Castes of Indian Society ? why Brahmins and Kshatriyas saw Islam with extreme Hate when both have adopted religion of invading greeks earlier ?







note : Majority of Muslims of both India and Pakistan are from Sudra origins, major castes of Pakistan are Jats, Gujjars and kaamis(dalits). upon division of India majority of Muhajirs registered as Sayyeds to get higher status in their new country.

during British raj majority of Nomadic Tribes also claimed Rajput origins for higher status. same with kashmiri muslims, most of Kashmiri muslims have adopted title Bhat (Brahmin) surname to get more social prestige. so unless they are of Iranic origin, take their claim of being one of them with pinch of sault.
I do not think that it has anything to do with caste but instead the amount of conversions happened based on the level of development of the differnet South Asian regions. The regions which had the highest amount of conversion rate during the medieval period were Pakistan, East Bengal and Afghanistan and these regions were also the least developed regions during the early medieval period before the arrival of Arabs and Turks with a low number of urban settlements and low number of literary works.

The Arab religion and civilization that was brought by Arabs and later Turks must have made a huge impression to these people and therefore they happily converted. But the people of mainland India looked down upon the Arabs and Turks and therefore refused to accept them. For example the court poet of Prithviraj Chauhan was disgusted by the appearance of the Turks and a 16th century text written by a scholar of the Vijayanagar Empire calls the Turks barbarians and drunkards. So mainland Indians never accepted their culture as they considered their civilizations to be superior