[Advaita-l] Knowledge, renunciation and varNASrama rules

Varadaraja Sharma rishyasrunga at rediffmail.com
Thu Aug 12 07:53:37 CDT 2010

Radhe Krishna
Shriman Vidyasankar, Radhe Krishna,
Ideally,only the saMnyAsin can be truly brahma-nishTha, although nowadays, most people are content with arm-chair philosophizing and would like to cut down the central importance given to saMnyAsa.


I tried to understand why that much importance is given to sanyasa.  Performance and nonperformance of karmas in other ashramas amounts to punya and papa. Supposing a vyakti in other ashrama attains brahma gnyana. By virtue of same he is free from all dualities like punya and papa. And being brahmanishta may not  ( would not?) perform any karma per se. Would this amount to disobeying the shasthras? Ofcourse the papa and the repercussions there from has no relevance for a vyakti who has attained brahmagnyana.  But here is a perceived mismatch of disobeying of shastras.  Whereas in case of sanyasi, he has done sarvakarmaparityaga for attaing mumukshutva or by virtue of having attained mumukshutva. In this case, there is no shasthra ullanganam. Is it that the content of shasthra maryada is central to the importantance given to sanyasa?

I remember having read a list of brahmagnyanis (perhaps quoted by Shriman Bhaskar) from shruti texts which included dvijas as well as non dvijas ( I remember the name of Dharmavyada, the ‘kasai’).  I read the gist of compilation of purvamimamsa as beautifully compiled by Shriman Jayanarayanan.  One of the rules I remember is the names mentioned in shruti texts do not denote specific historical persons.  But the fact of vyaktiviseha of this vyakti being a chathurtha/panchama and being a brahma gnyani can not be ignored even if not specifically denote a historical person.  My doubt is because of vyaktivisesha, Dharmavyada is unadhikari for sanyasa svikaram.  That being the case and shruti referring the vyakti as brahmagnyani, by virtue of him not entitled for sanyasa ashrama, can we still say that he can not be truly a brahma nishta?

I am trying to understand the purport and mistake in my understanding may please be corrected.

Shriman ravi, Radhe Krishna,

Without digressing into history/sociology, etc; can a Braahmana or other dvija have a Sanyasi as a guru from a non-Dvija background and even be formally initiated into sanyasa ashrama by that guru ?  In addition, can a Sanyasi from non-Dvija background formally learn vedanta ? If so, would that violate the nishedha for veda-adhikara for non-Dvijas ?

I had an illusion that sanyasa ashrama is only for brahmanas.  But after going through the discussions, in the list, I stood corrected that as per shasthras, thraivarnikas / dvijas are entitled for the same. As such, nondvija can not be initiated to sanyasa ashrama.  That being the case, I think the question of a brahmana taking sanyasa from a non dvija sanyasi would be sort of abhava.  Regarding the other part, I think Shriman Jaldhar Vyas has already written that a non dvija can not learn Vedanta per se from shrutyadi granthas being unadhikari but still the purport of the vedanta can still be learnt by them from itihasa puranadi granthas.

Radhe Krishna

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