[Advaita-l] Determination of Varna
rajaramvenk at gmail.com
rajaramvenk at gmail.com
Wed Aug 8 02:29:22 CDT 2012
As I mentioned in my off line post, I'd like to get the sastric view on my questions from sringeri acharya or others who authoritatively represent the sampradaya before forming a final opinion on this topic.
I didn't say that sudras or a-varnis are dull etc. They often have high intelligence. A brahmana may be less skilled than a sudra, poorer than a vaishya and weaker than a kshatriya but have higher sattva guna that propels him towards naishkamya karma and atma jnana. This guna quotient is acquired at birth. Jati is an indicator but not the only indicator or even the absolute.
I'm changing the topic as those who belong to mlechcha jati may not be proud of their lineage though I think that they should be for they, before the advent of abrahamic cults, worshipped ancestors, mithra, varuna etc. They were condemned primarily for giving up veda karma. Those who follow all nitya karmas at least can do so not me who does morning and afternoon sandhis in a combo deal and don't maintain any fire except the vaishnavarAgni :)
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From: "Jaldhar H. Vyas" <jaldhar at braincells.com>
Sender: advaita-l-bounces at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
Date: Tue, 7 Aug 2012 22:13:06
To: A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta<advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
Reply-To: A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta
<advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] mleccha-s not eligible to take Hinduism??
Once again I have been absent for a while and in the meantime this
discussion has mostly run its course on the list though some discussion
has been taking place offline as well. I give the following responses
only to tie up some loose ends.
On Tue, 17 Jul 2012, V Subrahmanian wrote:
> सहयज्ञाः यज्ञसहिताः प्रजाः *त्रयो वर्णाः ताः सृष्ट्वा उत्पाद्य पुरा
> *उवाच उक्तवान् प्रजापतिः प्रजानां स्रष्टा अनेन यज्ञेन प्रसविष्यध्वं प्रसवः
> वृद्धिः उत्पत्तिः तं कुरुध्वम्। एष यज्ञः वः युष्माकम् अस्तु भवतु
> इष्टकामधुक् इष्टान् अभिप्रेतान् कामान् फलविशेषान् दोग्धीति इष्टकामधुक्।
> Also there is the Purusha sUkta utterance: ब्राह्मणोऽस्य मुखमासीत्, बाहू
> राजन्यः कृतः, ऊरू तदस्य वैश्यः, पद्भ्यां शूद्रो अजायत which Shankara cites
> in the BG verse 4.13 referred by you:// Bhagavan said chaturvarNya mayA
> sR^iSTam but did He only do it once? //
> From the two bhashya-s of Shankara put together we get an affirmative
> answer to your question.
> From the above it is clear that all the three varNa-s for whom Vedic rites
> are prescribed were created 'at once'. The view that man lived in tribal
> units and then coalesced....is not in tune with the above bhashya. Also,
> the common culture we call Vedic had to have existed even before this
> coalescing took place. It had to have been in practice by people even
> before such coalescing took place. The intellectual evolution is also not
> admitted by the traditional Acharyas. For them, the society consisting of
> all the varNas (jaatis) has existed at the very beginning of the creation.
Ajitji was specifically asking me for a historical perspective. I agree
that traditionally our thinkers have tended to view the entire social
order as having originated in one fell swoop but even then one sees echoes
of a different view. For instance many jatis along the west coast
(Including Shankaracharyas own Nambudiri Brahmanas) consider themselves to
have been created either directly by or as a result of the deeds of
Bhagavan Parashurama. Now of course that Parashurama is the amsha of that
same Shrimannarayana whose amsha proclaimed the Gita but you'll agree that
this is a secondary srshti right? And originally the example was given of
certain Brahmana and Kshatriya jatis springing from the same ancestry. I
think it is in harmony with both shastra and history to suggest that there
were some "primal" Brahmanas, (and Kshatriyas, Vaishyas, Shudras...) and
others who joined them to make up the society we have today.
On Wed, 18 Jul 2012, rajaramvenk at gmail.com wrote:
> I have also pointed out Sringeri Periyava has said same
> minded with respect to Swami Dayananda. I won't call his action
> political as stated by Sri Jaladhar.
May I point out that I only ventured a guess based on the limited
information at my disposal.
> If one doesn't know why periyava
> endorses Swami Dayananda, one should ask him
> - not make such comments,
> which are very hurtful to those who respect our traditional acharyas.
Hey YOU asked MY opinion. So I gave it. If you don't want it don't ask
me. Then no one gets hurt. Also I don't see why it is disrespectful or
hurtful to note that todays acharyas have to operate under trying
conditions nevertheless let me assure you no disrespect was intended.
On Thu, 19 Jul 2012, Abhishek Madhyastha wrote:
> In the thread by Kuntimaddi Sadanandji, 4 classifications based on
> jati, i.e janma are given, namely Jati Brahmana, Jati Kshatriya, Jati
> Vaishya and Jati Shudra. My doubt is, how do shaivas fit into this
They can't explain it. jati Brahmanas, karma Brahmanas, guna Brahmanas --
it all reminds me of the Ptolomaic geocentric system of astronomy (which
was also adopted in the Surya and other jyotisha siddhantas.) He taught
that the planets move in perfect circles around the Earth. Of course this
is not the case and it became noticed that the predictions of this theory
did not match up with actual observations. So the geocentrists came up
with epicycles -- circles within the circles. And when it still didn't
fit, circles within circles within circles. Finally Copernicus, Galileo
etc. came along and dared to say the whole theory was bunk and the
planets move around the sun. (btw. Today jyotishis use accurate
astronomical observations. There was no fight between science and faith
as in the West.)
Before Shravana masa started I went to a shop to procure certain puja
items I needed. The owner gave my list to his employee and said "Bring
this Brahmana the items on this list." Isn't it funny how this
congenitally "dull and tamasika" Shudra grasped something our panditmanyas
have to tie themselves into knots to explain?
On Wed, 18 Jul 2012, kuntimaddi sadananda wrote:
> Shree Rajaram - PraNams. Please do not underestimate converters
> capacity to hurt also. In Goa people were forced to convert and when
> they were praying for Hindu gods in side their homes they were found and
> executed in public so that others do not do it. That was the coversion
As horrific as the inquisition was (and it is a very black mark on the
Catholic Church) its long-term effects were negligable. Review the
numbers and you'll see that conversions increased massively after India
became independant. Why? Could it be due to the fact that you and others
in this conversation think that Shudras are dull and ignorant by their
very nature except the fortunate few who you will condescend to provide
with a magic string to cure their spiritual deformity? Make no mistake
that is the conclusion of YOUR varna by guna theory and this is not the
astika view and certainly not mine.
> it is simply our own preservation. We can talk all we want about
> sampradraaya and say there is no body can get converted to Hinduism but
> sit back and watch people existing from Hinduism and then contributing
> to the destruction.
It is ironic that Hinduism prides itself on being the "most scientific
religion" when it comes to mumbo-jumbo about "God Particles" etc. and yet
the actual academic fields which are relevant such as sociology,
anthropology, and history remain virtually unknown to its adherents.
There is a large body of literature on religious conversions, how and when
they occur and let me tell you science comes to a different conclusion
than you. It is the traditional minded and orthodox in practice in every
religion who are maintaining their numbers against conversion (include
conversion to atheism which is a bigger phenomenon than conversion to
Christianity or Islam.)
It is the loose, vague, religions that are losing the greatest number of
followers. IF they make no demands on a persons loyalty they will not
> Gentlemen -Please
> open your eyes and see. Ideal situat is ione about one has to be
> practicle given the new situation existing around.
But this is the precise problem. Your proposed solution is neither
practical nor realistic. Now if you really believe your rhetoric, you
should be concentrating on the Hindus that are already here. The biggest
danger to Hinduism is keeping its own next generation in the fold. Both
astikas and reformers alike -- especially outside India -- are doing a
rotten job of it. Early on in this thread there was some discussion about
how hard it is for vaidikas to get married. These type of things should
be your priorities. Chasing the tail of a few westerners who don't even
need that kind of help should be very low on the list.
> There is an acharya Rina or Rishi yagna that is part of
> panca yagnaas that one has to do - That involves not only studying the
> scriptures and following but insure it is preserved too.
These are fine words. So why aren't you following them? Unless I'm
missing something, your conversion scheme is based on "My Guru says" not
any kind of "scripture" (I think you meant shastra right?)
On Wed, 18 Jul 2012, Sunil Bhattacharjya wrote:
> I have a request to the learned members of
> the list to be kind to give their valuable opinion of the following
> verse from Shukla Yajura Veda, which has been quoted by Swami Dayananda,
> the founder of the Arya Samaja, to justfy that Vedas are for all.
> Yajur veda (Shukla) 26.2
> That I to all the people may address this salutary speech, To priest and
> nobleman, Sûdra and Arya, to one of our own kin and to the stranger.
> Dear may I be to Gods and guerdon-giver. Fulfilled be this my hope: be
> that my portion!
This yajuSha only talks about kalyani vacham. Nowhere is it implied that
the Veda is being referred to. This yajuSha is "advertising" of a sort.
The Rshi (Laugakshi) is saying "I am a speaker of truth and the Gods
listen to me so I hope you will hire me for paurohitya giving generous
amounts of dakshina." (The "portion" of your translation.)
See Mahidharacharyas bhashya for the exact meaning.
On Thu, 19 Jul 2012, Kathirasan K wrote:
> I gathered a couple of references from our shastras that appear to
> the learning of Hinduism (which I consider both Tantrika & Vaidika or a
> mix) by Shudras and outcastes.
Was there any doubt on this? The
purana and itihasa are for all especially those who are Vedabahya or
Vedabrashta. And tantrika adhikara is not (in most cases) based on birth.
Though it should be noted that their requirements are even more stringent
in many ways.
> 1. Mahabharata - Vyasa has written that the Brahmana should teach all
> four varnas and that the order of seating should be that Brahmanas to be
> seated in the front and so forth.
> Verse: śrāvayec caturo varṇān kṛtvā brāhmaṇam agrataḥ (Shanti Parva)
Yes Shankaracharya mentions the same thing even at the same time as he
upholding the restriction on learning Vedas.
> 2. Saundaryalahari Bhashya by Lashmidhara - In the commentary on verse 11,
> Laksmidhara mentions that Shudras are eligible for Shri Vidya initiation
> and also for Vedic initiation. This is quite consistent with the Tantrika
> sampradaya where Vaidika adhikara is not sufficient for one to be initiated
> into the Tantrika sampradaya.
> Verse: cakravidyopāsane śudrānāmapi adhikāracodanāt niṣadasthapativat
> vaidike karmanyadhikārasiddheḥ na kācit ksatiḥ
> Translation (by Douglas Brooks): In the case of worshipping the Shri Cakra,
> the Shudras are competent. Just as (in the notion of the) priest and the
> tribal barbarian (nishada) in which what applies to the priest is
> applicable to the tribal outcaste, likewise what is applicable to the the
> vaidikas is applicable to outcastes. Nothing is lost (in allowing this).
I think Brooks is actually quoting someone elses translation here (its in
footnote 50 on p.30 of "The Secret of the Three Cities") and it is not a
very good one.
Earlier in this thread I mention that the rathakaras or jati of
chariotmakers are somewhere between dvija and shudra and they have the
right to agnyadhana in varshartau but not other vedokta karmas. There is
another anomalous situation concerning the Naishadasthapati (King of the
Nishadhas -- not "tribal barbarian." The Nishadhas were adivasis but
somewhere between arya and mlechha. For instance Nala of the
Nala-Damayanti story was a Naishadasthapati.
Now according to Shruti the Naishadasthapati is entitled to offer the
rudreshTI. Immediately after the discussion on Rathakaras, the Mimamsakas
take up discussion of this case (Mimamsa sutra 6.1.51-52) and the same
conclusion is drawn. He has adhikara for the specific act mentioned in
Shruti but no others. This principle is known in the dharmashastras as
It is this principle which Lakshmidhara is quoting. The Shrichakra and its
swarupa, mantra, vidhana etc. is mentioned in certain upanishads such as
tripuropanishad. In other words Shruti. So normally the non-dvijas would
not have adhikara. However it is specifically said to be for all. So the
rathakaranaishadhasthapati nyaya applies and shudras too may do shrichakra
upasana without implying that they can do other vedokta upasanas.
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
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