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Discussion about Dharmashastras and Sampradhayas of Brahmins !

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vijisesh

Active member
This Thread has the following picked up and which was not part of "
Ramar bridge a hoax " :


Mr. Vijisesh wrote ...

Great site referred , Mr.KRS
http://www.kamakoti.org/hindudharma/part3/chap6.htm

I am fascinated by the following lines :

The Brahmin relinquished the duties of his birth-the study of the Vedas and performance of the rites laid down in the Vedic tradition.

The canonical texts have it that the Brahmin must have no love for money, that he must not accumulate wealth.

The Brahmin spoiled himself and spoiled others.

The Brahmin, if he is to be true to his dharma, has to spend all his time in learning and chanting the Vedas, in performance sacrifices, in preserving the sastras, etc. People ask me: "What is the remedy today? Do you expect all Brahmins to leave their new life-style and return Vedic learning? "Whether or not I expect them to do so and whether or not such a step seems possible, I must ask them to do so( to return to their Vedic dharma). Where is the need for a guru-pitha or a seat on which an acarya is installed if I am to keep my mouth shut and watch idly as the dharma that is the source of everything is being endangered? Even if it seems not possible (Brahmins returning to the dharma of their birth) it must be shown to be possible in practice: that is the purpose of the institutions called mathas. They must harness all their energies towards the attainment of this goal.
During the years of the freedom struggle some people wondered whether the white man would quit because of satyagraha. Many things in this world regarded as not being within the realm on possibility have been shown to be possible. It is not for me to say that this(return of all Brahmins to the Vedic dharma) is not possible; to take such a view would be contrary to our very dharma. it is up to you to make it possible in practice or not to make it possible. All I can do is too keep reminding you the message of the dharmasastras.


So Is it true from the above excerpt that :

1) If the Brahmin does some work for a livelihood , he defies all shastras meaning that " He has the violated the Dharma recommended for him " by the vedas.

2) Point (1) above diminishes the chances of a brahmin reaching DESTINATION - HEAVEN , even though he adds karmic points , say by service / charity / doing other good deeds

Hence the inference will be : Oi ! Brahmana ! Leave out the materialistic world , come back to your dharma , live the lives of a YOGI , Beg alms for a living !!

Much time would've not wasted by many in this quest behind materialistic acquisitions and they would've been rather confined to a simple life , with the aid of " Bhagathi Bhiksham Dehi !"


Mr.KRS replied ...


1) If the Brahmin does some work for a livelihood , he defies all shastras meaning that " He has the violated the Dharma recommended for him " by the vedas.
Yes - because if Varna Dharma is to be believed as the societal cornerstone of our religion, the answer to your question is 'yes'.

2) Point (1) above diminishes the chances of a brahmin reaching DESTINATION - HEAVEN , even though he adds karmic points , say by service / charity / doing other good deeds
Varna Dharma is not about an individual attaining the Heavens - Ashrama Dharma is about that. Varna Dharma is for the Brahmins as a class of people learning Vedas and performing the sacrificial and other rites for the benefit of the society and if not all humanity.

Hence the inference will be : Oi ! Brahmana ! Leave out the materialistic world , come back to your dharma , live the lives of a YOGI , Beg alms for a living

Yes, this is what the Varna Dharma dictates - but this is a conundrum in modern life. This is why a thread was started (Who Are We?) here in the Forum to understand this conflict.

Mr.Vijisesh ... response !


Aren't there common ' Dharmashastras ' for the brahmins to be adhered to , common for those practicing Ashrama Dharma / having belief in Varna Dharma !

I shall go thru " Who are we !" - thread !

Thanks and Regards

Mr.Vijisesh

Mr.N.R Ranganathan ... responded ..

Mr.Vijisesh,

I think we are dealing here with a subject not related to Ramar bridge. I
have to continue my reply here since you required some details.

Srivatsa Somadeva Sarma has authored a book on dharma sastra,presently
available at Bhavani book depot, west mambalam, chennai -33.
SriVaishnava nithyanushtanakramam is published by LIFCO.
Dharmapuram Aadheenam has published a book ' Nithyakarmaneri'.
Of course the best is 'Vaidyanatha deekshithiyam' ( also called as Smriti
Mukthapalam ) and I think you may get it at Veda Dharma Sastra Paripalana
Sabha, Kumbakonam.

with kind regards
 
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Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
About Dharma sasthras

Professor Stenzler enumerates forty-six distinct Dharma Śástras or recognized modes of Hindu law and ritual. To those may be added several recensions of the same Dharma Śástras, of which professor Stenzler speaks to having read of twenty-two.

The entire forty-six are independent sources of and authorities upon Hindu law.
Many Smriti works have been discovered later. And Smritis continue to be written. Recently I read about a Smriti written in 1945.

Hindus assume the text to be the language of inspiration; and, as the several Dharma Śástras not merely differ, but often dispose of the same subject in a contradictory manner, they deem it their duty to reconcile all discrepancies, how forced soever their interpretations may be.

Our Smirtis or Dharma Sashtras contain many injunctions which reflects an attitude which was prevalent earlier like total denial of any right to women. They had no right to do Puja, Homa and even pray to God. The only thing they could do was assist the husband in the performance of Dharma as Dharmapatni.

Swami Sivananda says

These Smritis have varied from time to time. The injunctions and prohibitions of the Smritis are related to the particular social surroundings. As these surroundings and essential conditions of the Hindu society changed from time to time, new Smritis had to be compiled by the sages of different ages and different parts of India.

The laws and rules which are based entirely upon our social positions, time and clime, must change with the changes in society and changing conditions of time and clime. Then only the progress of the Hindu society can be ensured.

Our present society has considerably changed. A new Smriti to suit the requirements of this age is very necessary. Another sage will place before the Hindus of our days a new suitable code of laws. Time is ripe for a new Smriti. Cordial greetings to this sage.
Unfortunately even after 50 years after the above lines were written no Rishi has appered in our midst to write a new dharma sasthra.

Bengali Brahmin society underwent a number of social reforms over the years. The Smriti they follow now is called Raghunatha Smriti which was compiled around 1500 A.D. In this the entire Anthyeshti ceremony has been modified. They have done away with the horrible and obnoxious practice of Chavundi Brahmana. Most of them are Smartas though they do not call themselves so.
 
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Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
Sampradhaya: Literally means tradition.

Generally people in India were not governed by the Smiritis, but by the prevailing customs in the jnati (the endogamous group). The customs were dictated by them. For example marriages were effectively recognized the jnati , and not the state. A marriage not recognized by the jnati, was effectively improper. The recent incident about the same Gotra marriage in Haryana bears witness to this.

An English traveler in the nineteenth century was told by an Indian villager that the village decided on the code of conduct to be followed and only when the collective group could not decide on something they asked the Brahmins about the Sasthras.

The caste groups made their own rules which they called Sampradhaya. In the case of Brahmins it was mostly according to the Dharma Sasthra. But they did make changes. When Bengali society especially Brahmins was plagued by the Sati tradition it was never followed by any of the south Indian Brahmin groups.

I used to ask the priests about the Dharma Sasthra which they followed. Then when I asked them why they are not following it to the letter, invariably the reply was this is our Sampradhayam.

Sampradhayams do not follow any particular Dharma Sasthra and change depending on the sub caste and region.
 
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vijisesh

vijisesh

Active member
Mr.nacchi,
There is a general talk about hinduism that..
All were Hindus in the beginning , during vedic times,
the train of hindus then stopped at a station when most of the hindus got down !
the train then carried forward as per GOD's instructions and at the next junction,
the people claiming from the next popular religion got down ...
Of course their messenger appeared and took them out !
Finally the train stopped in the last destination , when the last messenger came and declared that this religion was the only one !

So, Why did our messengers stop at one point of time and amend the dharma shastras in a legal way in order to avoid a host of interpretations ????

If u say the present day sadhus / sanyasis are messengers of GOD , do they have the supernatural powers that the olden days messengers used to possess - i.e communicating directly with GOD and being his mouthpiece ??
 

silverfox

Active member
Question for Sri Nachi

Quotes from Nachi<<<< Bengali Brahmin society underwent a number of social reforms over the years. The Smriti they follow now is called Raghunatha Smriti which was compiled around 1500 A.D. In this the entire Anthyeshti ceremony has been modified. They have done away with the horrible and obnoxious practice of Chavundi Brahmana. Most of them are Smartas though they do not call themselves so. >>>>>

What is "chavundi brahmana"?

 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
If u say the present day sadhus / sanyasis are messengers of GOD , do they have the supernatural powers that the olden days messengers used to possess - i.e communicating directly with GOD and being his mouthpiece ??
I do not believe in that nonsense. I am totally against all Godmen.

The only two persons who are generally believed to have attained the highest state in Hinduism are Sri Ramakrishna and Ramana Maharishi. Sri Ramakrishna often spoke about talking to Maa KAALI. But he never quoted her to preach anything. His main teaching was "There are as many ways (of reaching God) as there are men."

Ramana Maharishi taught 'Self-enquiry' (Pure Advaita). Never quoted God for that.
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
Quotes from Nachi<<<< Bengali Brahmin society underwent a number of social reforms over the years. The Smriti they follow now is called Raghunatha Smriti which was compiled around 1500 A.D. In this the entire Anthyeshti ceremony has been modified. They have done away with the horrible and obnoxious practice of Chavundi Brahmana. Most of them are Smartas though they do not call themselves so. >>>>>

What is "chavundi brahmana"?


Not worthwhile discussing. I will send you a mail.
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
The smiritis are outdated documents. Dharma meant way of living. The Dharma Sasthras laid down ways of living for the community. The also contained the laws of inheritance, punishment etc. They were amended very often. Then different regions and different communities followed different Smiritis.

These were written

1. When slavery was the accepted norm and widely prevalent.

2. When you cut off a thief's hand and the only way to prove the innocence was to put your hand in boiling oil, swallow poison etc. If you come through these ordeals you are innocent.

These were the norms of behavior in those days.

Varnadharma is part and parcel of these practices.

When we have abolished Slavery and such horrible inhuman punishments, why we we continuing to support the equally inhuman Varna Dharma?

These Smiritis are antiquated and to be preserved only for posterity.
 
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Brahmanyan

Well-known member
Dharmasastras and Sampradayas of Brahmins.

This discussion is quite interesting and informative. But I am afraid slowly it is turing into arguement. Mr.Vijisesh has raised some pertinent queries ( exclude the jokes and sarcasms in his posts) answering them will certainly help the modern generation of Brahmin youths.Previously Brahmins were patronised and respected by other Castes for their Religious learning. But now the Socio Economic needs have changed completely. There are no patrons for religious learning. Except some Temples and Mutts there is nobody to feed the students of Veda Padasalas. Equality of opportunity in education and jobs is denied to the Brahmins in the name of Reservation and quotas. Brahmins are forced to compete with others for their day to day living. They enjoy no respect of the past, instead Brahmins have become object of redicule and jokes in Cinema and TV shows. Driven away from their lands and Agraharas the present generation is forced to migrate outside for jobs and even to other Countries where the level playing is there on competitive fields of opportunities. No wonder the present generation of youngsters become frustrated when some one talk about Dharmasastras. I wish people who participate in this discussion take a serious look into the subject with due understanding of the needs of our present generation of youngesters and post some helpful suggestions.

Regards.
 
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vijisesh

vijisesh

Active member
To Mr.Nacchi - Query-2

Ok Mr.Nacchi,

Good to note that u are against all Godmen ! but does that include the messengers who have come down at different time periods and have gained the confidence of masses of people who have been branded to be under a particular religion !

These messengers definitely had some powers to get the nod from so many sections of the society and in convincing them to slowly guide them into a new religion !

Could Psychology have an answer to this ?

Of course the present day God men just convey one thing in common - Stop the human machine for a while from its monotonous running and take a break ! and when the human takes a break , discovering the calmness and peace within himself , he goes behind the swamiji , giving away all that he has !

So Pundits please opine about the creation of Messengers !!




I do not believe in that nonsense. I am totally against all Godmen.

The only two persons who are generally believed to have attained the highest state in Hinduism are Sri Ramakrishna and Ramana Maharishi. Sri Ramakrishna often spoke about talking to Maa KAALI. But he never quoted her to preach anything. His main teaching was "There are as many ways (of reaching God) as there are men."

Ramana Maharishi taught 'Self-enquiry' (Pure Advaita). Never quoted God for that.
 
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N.R.Ranganathan

Well-known member
Dharmasastras and Sampradayas..

Dear Sri Nacchinarkiniyan,

I refer to your statement " The only two persons who are generally
believed....... ". Sir, the phrase " generally believed .." implies a certain
amount of uncertainty. Both Sri Ramana and Sri Ramakrishna did realize
the TRUTH.

Sir, In addition to these two , there are others. I am sure it has escaped
your notice. They are - Sri Sadasiva Brahmendra, Sri Shirdi Sai Baba,
Sri Seshadri Swamigal, Sri Gnananandagiri Swamigal, Sri Chandrasehara
Bharathi Swamigal, Sri Poondi Swamigal, Sri Kuzhandaiananda Swamigal,
Sri Totathri Swamigal. There may be others also. All these holy men
are Jivanmuktas.

regards,
 

N.R.Ranganathan

Well-known member
Dharmasastras and Sampradayas

Dear Sri Nacchinarkiniyan,

Bhagawan Ramana mainly advocated the path of enquiry - Who am I ?
It is quite true.

Oftentimes, when some devotees expressed their inability to do
Atmavichara, He has advised them to surrender to God. He insisted that surrender must be total and complete, without retaining any trace of
your ego. He comforted them saying ;' I know this also may seem difficult,
but with constant abhyasa and effort you will learn to surrender yourself
completely to God.'
 

Nacchinarkiniyan

Well-known member
Sri. N.R.Ranganathan

This discussion is neither about the Saints nor about their teachings.

This thread is about Dharmashastras and Sampradhayas


The devotees and disciples of different Saints believe that they have all attained self-realization and have become Jivanmuktas.

But from a general point of view, I always use the word "it is generally believed." This avoids anyone questioning the statement.
 
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