Gupta Empire Adeena, Sam, and Yuri

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Discipline:
Social Studies
Subject:
Ancient History
Grade:
11

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Gupta Empire Adeena, Sam, and Yuri

The Gupta's Empire influence spread from northen to central India, west to Punjab and east to Bengal, north to Kashmir. 1

Gupta Empire

Introduction to the caste system of India

320- 550 C.E The Gupta Empire orginated from the Kingdom of Magadha, with its capital in Pataliputra. The Gupta Empire was modeled after the Mauryan Empire. 1

Theater-State- Ruler would take goods and profits from trade and disperse them in gifts to subordinates (princes did this for their centers,emperor in the capital). The Gupta empire utilized coined money. Traded cotton cloth, ivory, metalwork, exotic animals for Chinese silk and Indonesian spices in Southeast Asia. 4Fight against Huns depleted imperial treasury.

Theater- State persuaded outlaying areas to follow Gupta way of life through rituals, ceremonies, and other cultural events. Women in the Gupta Empire could gain political strength in becoming Jainist or Buddhist monks, skilled in the arts, or good at sexual pleasure. Hinduism in leadership affected how strong the caste system was during the Gupta empire. Huns invaded from Steppes of Central Asia in Northwestern India. 3

The Bhagavad-Gita is an acient Indian vedic text, the Bhagavad- Gita consits of the conversation between Krishna and Arjuan, before the battle of Kurushetra. AllHindus believe in reincarnation, and how ones Atman continues onto the next life. Krishna states "Death means nothing in a universe in which souls will be reborn again and again." Due to Hindus beliefs of reincarnation came the accetpance of the caste system, most believed they would be reborn into a higher caste, or even realeased from the cycle of rebirth. 2

The Rig Veda contains one of the most famous sections in ancient Indian text in which the first man created, Purusa, is sacrificed in order to give rise to the four caste. "“The Brahmin was his mouth, his two arms were made the Rajanya [Kshatriya, king and warrior], his two thighs [loins] the Vaishya, from his feet the Sudra [servile class] was born.” 5

Citations: 1. Bulliet, Richard W. The Earth and Its Peoples. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2008. 162+. Print. (Text Book) 1. “Gupta Empire.” Maps of World. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Sept. 2013. .2. Mahadeva, Sastri Alladi, Śaṅkarācārya, and Śaṅkarācārya. The Bhagavad Gita. Madras: Samata, 1979. Print. (Primary Source Bhagavad Gita)3. Bulliet, Richard W. The Earth and Its Peoples. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2008. 162+. Print. (Text Book)4. Bulliet, Richard W. The Earth and Its Peoples. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2008. 162+. Print. (Text Book)5. "The Rig Veda." Rig Veda Index. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Oct. 2013. (Primary Source Online Version)6. Jogga, Eric. "Early Hindu Temples: Deogarh." Spice Flair. SpiceFlair, 15 June 2012. Web. ]Sept. 2013. 7. "The Upanishads, Max Müller, Translator." The Upanishads, Max Müller, Translator. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Oct. 2013. (Primary Source Online Text verison)

Hinduism expanded all throughout India during the reign of the Gupta empire. The royal Guptas took a liking to Hinduism and practiced it themselves. Hinduism adopted elements of buddhism and jainism. During the time of the Gupta empire, Hinduism became more complex; more rituals were practiced and astronomical rituals started being practiced. Economic inequality was justified with Hinduism under the caste system, keeping separate castes working seperate jobs. 6

"The gods love what is mysterious, and dislike what is evident." Stated in the Upanishads an acient Hindu text, it truly preached indiviualism, and working on ones varn, due to this unification of India never lasted long. 7


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