Society of Harappans

  • Political Organisation:There is no clear idea about the political organization of the Harappans.
  • Culture: Indus valley civilisation has been the first and pioneer civilisation in Indian subcontinent depicting advanced stages of cultural development.
  • Food: People of Harappan civilization ate every possible food crop of that period. They had both vegetarian and non-vegetarian eating habits.
  • Leisure: Evidence of indoor games, toys for kids, and possible stadium (Dholavira).
  • Household items: most of the household items were in the form of terracotta. However, copper and bronze were also used for utensils and storage items.
  • Fashion: People of IVC used beads, gemstones and precious metals for jewellery, lipstick was imported from west Asia, both cotton and wool were used for clothing. While necklaces, fillets, armlets and finger-rings were commonly worn by both sexes, women wore girdles, earrings and anklets.
  • Social setup: Evidence of lower and upper town proves that there was a social difference among people on certain basis (it could be economic, ethnic or linguistic). Language of IVC is unknown and script was pictographic.
  • Religious acts: They practices mother goddess and Proto Shiva as Pashupati seal (evidence from Mohenjo-Daro) and fire altars in Kalibangan.
  • Religious Practices: In Harappa, numerous terracotta figurines of women have been found. In one figurine, a plant is shown growing out of the embryo of a woman. This image probably represents the goddess of Earth and was intimately connected with the origin and growth of plants. The Harappan, therefore, looked upon the earth as a fertility goddess and worshiped her.
image 113

                                                                   Fig: A terracotta figurine

  • The male deity is represented on a seal. This god has three-horned heads and is represented in the sitting posture of a yogi, with one leg placed above the other. This god is surrounded by an elephant, a tiger, and a rhinoceros and below his throne there is a buffalo and at his feet two deer. It is identified as Pashupati seal.
image 114

Fig: A Priest-king

  • The people of the Indus region also worshipped trees. The depiction of a deity is represented on a seal amidst branches of the Pipal. This tree continues to be worshipped to this day.
  • Animals were also worshipped in Harappan times and many of them are represented on seals. The most important of them is the one-horned animal unicorn which may be identified with the rhinoceros.
  • Evidence of fire altar at Kalibangan.
  • Despite the depiction of the divine on seals and figurines, we find no architectural structure that can be pointed as a place of worship.
Free UPSC MasterClass
This is default text for notification bar