An Upper Bound for the Number of People in the Family
Whenever I think of the lives of our ancestors, a kind of anxiety envelopes me. Is there any future for joint family system in our country? Is it not declining at present? If we decide that this system is good from a broader perspective, is it possible under the current circumstances to keep it alive?
The Plague pandemic came to Mulbagal perhaps after all other places in the vicinity. When the news spread that Plague had broken out in Kolar and Bowring Town, people of Mulbagal mused: “To the West of our town is Virūpākṣi Māramma. Nācāramma stands guard atop the hills. Raṇabheramma is at the centre of the town. And in the East Āñjaneyasvāmi stands tall with his mighty arm raised, protecting us vigilantly. When we are so protected on all sides, who or what can cause us harm?” Thinking thus, they emboldened each other.
I have previously described the vaidikas, scholars, and connoisseurs of Mulbagal, in bits and pieces, in many series of articles. In the present essay I shall describe the typical lifestyle of Mulbagal’s people. I have not selected the topic for this article from the town of Mulbagal because the place is special in any way. Scholars and common people alike resided there in those days as they did in all other places. Since I know this town from close quarters, I have set out to describe its social milieu.
The Beginning of Fragility
According to the Hindu calendar, a span of sixty years is counted as a paryāya. From the start of the Prabhava saṃvatsara till the end of the Akṣaya saṃvatsara is a period of sixty years. We can imagine these to be sixty spokes in the wheel of kāla-puruṣa’s chariot. From one Prabhava to the next Prabhava is one complete rotation of that wheel. Or from Vibhava to Vibhava, Śukla to Śukla, and so on.