In 1965, at the request of M. S. Golwalkar, RSS leader Deendayal Upadhyaya formulated "integral humanism" as the official doctrine of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh. It is still claimed by the BJP as its "guiding philosophy". It stresses the distinction between "nation" and "state". According to the doctrine a nation comprises a "motherland" (its physical territory) and a "soul". Upadhyaya writes "Family, community, trade union ... are various limbs of the nation..." and dharma (धर्म) is "the repository of the nation's soul".

For Upadhyaya, caste was part of the natural order, and caste conflict was an unnatural state of affairs. The four castes are "analogous to the different limbs of Virat-Purusha... from the head ... Brahmins were created, Kshatriyas from hands, Vaishya from his abdomen and Shudras from legs... There is complete identity of interest, identity of belonging."

Hindu Nationalism: A Reader Edited by Christophe Jaffrelot, Princeton, 2007.