A member of the second of the four great Hindu castes, the military caste. The traditional function of the Kshatriyas is to protect society by fighting in wartime and governing in peacetime.
- The Kshatriya must use power to protect the rights of the weak, for that is his dharma, the truth of his nature.
- A long time ago, most Kshatriyas and Vaishyas ceased to perform the initiation ceremony in its full form.
- After all Parashurama, who is credited with annihilating generations of Kshatriyas, is still considered as one of the avatars.
Late 18th century: from Sanskrit kṣatriya, from kṣhatra 'rule, authority'.
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