Dasyu

Dasyu

[duhs-yoo]
noun Hinduism.
a member of the Asuras, survivors of the ancient culture of Harappa: defeated by Indra.

Origin:
< Sanskrit dasyu

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dasyu

member of an aboriginal people in India encountered and embattled by the invading Aryans (c. 1500 BC). They were described by the Aryans as a dark-skinned, harsh-spoken people who worshiped the phallus. This allusion has persuaded many scholars that worship of the linga, the Hindu religious symbol, originated with them; it may, however, have referred to their sexual practices. They lived in fortified places from which they sent out armies. They may be considered the original Sudras, or labourers, who served the three higher classes of Brahman, Kshatriya (warrior), and Vaishya (mercantile), from whose ritual communion they were excluded

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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