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Enge Brahmanana?

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SwamiTaBra

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names are: Archer, Baker, Carter, Cook, Carpenter, Driver, Miller, Taylor, Weaver. Less obvious instances: Arkwright, Bailey, Barker, Cartwright, Chapman, Cooper, Fletcher, Fuller, Turner, Wainwright, Ward, Wheelwright, Wright.
Parsees in India too, took as surnames the professions their fore-fathers took up like: Daruwalla (liquor merchant or distiller), Screwala (i am unsure about its origins, may be one who made screws or one who screwed others
icon7.png
), Doctor, Engineer, Merchant (many muslims too have this surname), Palkhivala (palanquin-makers).

Some took the places where they lived e.g. Sataravala (one from Satara); Madraswalla & Poonawalla surnames are to found amonst the Dawoodi-Bohris, a Shia sect.

Rgds.,
Swami

P.S. : I have an hunch: the number of parsi surnames exceed their population!
 
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Brahmanyan

Well-known member
Dear Sri Swami,

Yes, proof of the pudding is in the eating. I do not understand the relevance of discussions on Varnasrama and Veda Patasalas in today's fast changing life style of Brahmin Community. At this rate of attrition of purohits, time is not far away that we may have difficulty to find a Purohit to perform marriages or other ceremonies. Already the law of demand and supply has set in fixing remuneration to purohits to perform ceremonies, at least in big cities. Recently my neighbour has paid a sum of Rs.60 thousand for the marriage package (all inclusive) to the purohit against the demand of Rs One Lakh . According to our scriptures selling vedas and charging for food are considered greatest sins, but in today's world they have become lucrative business.
Like Brahmin Agraharams our Veda Patasalas have been turned into heritage buildings, for visitors from foreign countries.
I am sorry if I sound cynical, but are these not facts?

Regards,
Brahmanyan,
Bangalore.
 
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S

SwamiTaBra

Guest
Dear Sri Swami,

Yes, proof of the pudding is in the eating. I do not understand the relevance of discussions on Varnasrama and Veda Patasalas in today's fast changing life style of Brahmin Community. At this rate of attrition of purohits, time is not far away that we may have difficulty to find a Purohit to perform marriages or other ceremonies. Already the law of demand and supply has set in fixing remuneration to purohits to perform ceremonies, at least in big cities. Recently my neighbour has paid a sum of Rs.60 thousand for the marriage package (all inclusive) to the purohit against the demand of Rs One Lakh . According to our scriptures selling vedas and charging for food are considered greatest sins, but in today's world they have become lucrative business.
Like Brahmin Agraharams our Veda Patasalas have been turned into heritage buildings, for visitors from foreign countries.
I am sorry if I sound cynical, but are these not a facts?

Regards,
Brahmanyan,
Bangalore.

Sir,

I almost wholeheartedly agree with you.

Purohitam and vedic leaning can be delinked to a considerable extent. I think the brahmin community should look at the issue seriously, whether we can nurture vedic pundits (not engaged in purohitam or minimally engaged in that).

I admit that we too have to share the blame --- vedic learning is relegated to destitute brahmin boys are those from poor background.

With rgds.,
Swami
 
S

SwamiTaBra

Guest
Some of the karma-khANDa activities, such as the veda-pArAyaNam, have become part of the rituals of big temples such as the Venkateshvara temple, Tirupati. Temples like the SkandAshramam, Chennai, have been conducting the chaNDi homam daily since the year 1999 in this case. Sudarshana homam is conducted regularly in some VaiShNava templE
I do know that TTD used to pay honoraria for vadikas for daily veda-parayanam at other select temples (outside the admn. of TTD). At the Madambakkam temple (near Skandaasramam), a Ganapadigal is entrusted with that responsibility. I am however not sure whether the practice is still continuing.

Rgds.,
Swami

P.S.: I'm not sure whether veda-parayanam itself is a karma-kanda function.
The visible karma-kandas, as I understand for larger good are the yagnas.
 
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Dear Shri Haridas Siva,
Thanks for your definition of a brahmin. Very few people who are born brahmins remain so by word, deed, action karma etc., Venkat
 

tbs

Well-known member
Sir,

I almost wholeheartedly agree with you.

Purohitam and vedic leaning can be delinked to a considerable extent. I think the brahmin community should look at the issue seriously, whether we can nurture vedic pundits (not engaged in purohitam or minimally engaged in that).

I admit that we too have to share the blame --- vedic learning is relegated to destitute brahmin boys are those from poor background.

With rgds.,
Swami
hi swami,
yes ...its correct....mainly vedic learning is relegated to destitute brahmin boys are those from poor background....it may be the

reason... they are more greedy.....due to insecurity in life and the community is the main reason for it.....when i was veda patashala...

getting admission is tough competetive.....but now many veda patashalas became a heritage building...its true....time is changing

very fast....everybody wants to become a SOFTWARE ENGINEER....... nobody willing to go to veda patashala.....even though

there is short supply of purohits.....

regards
tbs
 

samarapungavan

Active member
Dear Shri Swami,

TTD as of date provides a remuneration of INR 5000 for vedic pandits who recite in temples regularly, but this has has to be certified by a person like the trustee of the temple or EO.

Regds,
 
S

SwamiTaBra

Guest
Dear Shri Swami,

TTD as of date provides a remuneration of INR 5000 for vedic pandits who recite in temples regularly, but this has has to be certified by a person like the trustee of the temple or EO.

Regds,

Dear Sri. Samarapungavan,

Thanks for the update.

Rgds.,
Swami
 

happyhindu

Well-known member
namaste smt.HappyHindu.

Please do NOT address me as 'sir', just my username will do.

Article 26 of the Constitution of India reads:

26. Freedom to manage religious affairs Subject to public order, morality and health, every religious denomination or any section thereof shall have the right
(a) to establish and maintain institutions for religious and charitable purposes;
(b) to manage its own affairs in matters of religion;
(c) to own and acquire movable and immovable property; and
(d) to administer such property in accordance with law

For your information, this article was enshrined in the Constitution at the behest of KAnchi ParamAchArya:
Kanchi Mahaperiaval : Experiences with His Holiness Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi MahaSwamiji : kamakoti.org
Post-independence India - Google Books

Thus, IMO, the State cannot control brahmin veda-pAThaShAlas into admitting NB boys, or else it would have done it long back.
Shri Saidevo,

One one hand the Kanchi Acharya preached dharmashastras. One the other hand he influenced leaders / politicians / constitution.

It is unfortunate that the Kanchi Acharya made provisions to allow caste-discrimination to exist and thrive within hinduism in the name of "freedom to manage its own affairs in the matters of religion".

Which is why i feel the law-makers must pass tighter laws with relevant punishments to weed out caste-discrimination of all forms. I also feel it is a good idea for the government to institute an enquiry into the mutt's claims of jurisdiction over other Shankara mutts.

Personally, I am not averse to NBs learning Veda chanting with proper regard to the rules of its oral propagation, if the initiative comes from NB institutions or individuals. What I object to is compelling brahmin MaThams to admit NB boys to their veda-pAThaShAlas.
Shri Saidevo, i already mentioned about the ideology fight in the previous post. Please may i ask, why do NOT the brahmin mathams want to allow NBs in their veda patshalas? In this very thread you were asked a question by Shri Nara; on the Kanchi Acharya clubbing Panchamas and Dogs in the same category.

It is not apparent that brahmin mathams are propagating caste discrimination by disallowing NBs to learn vedas? And that too in the name of "freedom" of religion? May i know what purpose does such segregation serve ?

There is one problem in brahmin veda-pAThaShAlas admitting NB boys. Suppose an NB boy is found not qualified and rejected for the veda adhyayana course, whereas some brahmin boys are selected (although many other brahmin boys are rejected), this is very likely to create politics and raise a demand for dilution of the standard. This might even introduce a 'quota system' of lower performance for NB boys!
Through the hypothetical situation you present, are you saying that all brahmin boys who join veda patshalas perform outstandingly well? Whereas non-brahmins will not be performing just as well?

I do not think there is any need to imagine situations. The genesis of the reservations systems in Madras Presidency was discussed in the "Brits are to Blame" thread.

I re-phrase and ask you again -- if brahmins go to court to fix your varna status, if a guru labels you a shudra and asks you to follow the dharmashastras, what would you do? What legitimate purpose did his messages serve?

Do you have any historical proof of such incidents having happened, other than their mere mention in the Manu SmRti? Remember, brahmins have always been a minority, so any such punishment at their behest would surely have been recorded in history and legends.
The definition of a 'brahmin' is not even consistent between the purvamimansa and uttamimansa schools.

Is there historical proof that brahmins have always been a minority? Were not the Bhadradvajas, Bhrigus, or the kshatropeta brahmanas (kshatriya brahmanas) such as Gargas, Samkritis, Mudgalas, Kanvas, etc involved in wars ? Is there any basis to consider that their battalions were small? If a book by Priyatosh Banerjee is to be believed then there were several mentioned as Kshatropeta-dvijatyah in the puranas, such as Urukshayas, Kapis, Priyamedhas, Vishnuvridhas, Haritas, Saunakas, etc.

If there were no atrocities committed on Shudras, why are there so many verses on how shudras must be treated in the smrithis? According to Katyayana Smrithi if a Shudra overheard the Veda or uttered a word of the Veda; the King shall cut his tongue and pour hot molten lead in his ears. What was the necessity to mention these things in the "shastras"?

Me thinks a punishment does not exist, if the 'crime' does not exist. Obviously such punishments must have been created, because such a 'crime' (of shudra hearing or uttering vedic verses) existed.

Hope you had read posts in the "Brits are to Blame" thread. As recent as the peshwa maratha rule, atrocities on low castes were known to have happened. In Page 2 of this paper, there is a list of ill treatments meted out to low castes: MSE | The Annihilation of Caste - Dr. B. R. Ambedkar

Even today low castes are treated badly. Ofcourse brahmins wash off their hands to say they are not responsible for it; and yet, brahmin mathams will practice caste-discrimination. They are not interested in conveying a powerful message of birth-equality to the masses by allowing vedic education for all.

As an impartial scholar, I hope you would not brush aside the fact that Manu SmRti is full of interpolations:
Organiser - Content
I do not know if am impartial but i know am not a scholar. The description of a jabbering lady suits better.

Will the brahmin mathams accept that manu smrithi is full of interpolations?

I referred to the pANiNIya shikShA, not pANiNIya vyAkharaNa. To have an idea of what is involved in the oral tradition of Veda chanting to preserve its structure, please check this link:
http://www.svbf.org/journal/vol1no2/chanting.pdf
Thankyou for the link. Shri Saidevo am not sure, but are you trying to say that only a brahmin guru and brahmin shishya will be able to eliminate pata-bhedas?

This is a lofty thought no doubt, but will our pseudo-secular central and state governments who prevented even rudimentary Hindu religion being taught in government schools, ever take such an initiative? Even if a Hindu party like the BJP runs the government, will it be allowed to take such initiative?
Well, the DMK government started one vedic school where anyone could apply irrespective of caste to be trained as a purohit. If you type ''Veda classes, all castes'', this link is the 3rd hit on google search http://www.tamilbrahmins.com/general-discussions/886-veda-classes-all-castes.html

KAnchi ParamAchArya blamed only brahmins for giving up their svadharma and competing with the professions of other varNas.
Sir, is there any guarantee that brahmins did not give up their svadharma in the pre-colonial times? Is there a guarantee that the forefathers of a NB were always NB, or those of a B were always B? Is there a guarantee that NBs did not become Bs or vice-versa?

If brahmins stick to their svadharma, the scales of profession will automatically adjust and let the NBs be happy about their chances.
Can we possibly dream of brahmins sticking to their svadharma? Do you sincerely think that a 'shudra' will agree to become a slave to a dvija in this 21st century even if a 'brahmin' goes back to his svadharma?

Those NBs who are spiritually inclined and are serious about it, proving their mettle, will always be welcome. Sometime back, I read about a news report of brahmins in a still-surviving, traditional agraharam in KarnATaka doing pada-pUja to a dalit sage when he visited their area. In spirituality, talents are always bound to be recognized, when the initiative is personal.
If mutts had allowed NBs to learn vedas, there would have been no necessity for dalits to establish their own matham. What purpose does doing a pada-puja serve when caste-discrimination still continues ?

The names of the four varNas have no suggestions about the mistakenly supposed distinction of superiority or inferiority. The varNa-vibhAga has been only a convenient and efficient way to administer the various affairs of a civilized society. Today it exists in the form of class distinction, whether one admits it or not.
Differentiation or discrimination can exist in any form -- class, wealth status, academic levels, etc -- but it cannot exist in the name of caste-by-birth. The whole ideology of condeming people as inferior or spiritually incapable or slaves and that too by birth, has to be done away with. It would be a mere hoodwink to claim that there is no superiority or inferiority distinction made wrt varnas.

And castes were born out of family professions, even in the English society. Obvious instances of such names are: Archer, Baker, Carter, Cook, Carpenter, Driver, Miller, Taylor, Weaver. Less obvious instances: Arkwright, Bailey, Barker, Cartwright, Chapman, Cooper, Fletcher, Fuller, Turner, Wainwright, Ward, Wheelwright, Wright. For meanings of these less obvious surnames, check The origin of English surnames 1: work and status | History and traditions of England.
I feel that the mention of English society is irrelevant here.

Regards.
 
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saidevo

Well-known member
namaste smt.HappyHindu.

For a moment I forgot that you are, like Nara, a rationalist who is versed with Hindu religion and history.

• If it is your view that Kanchi PamarAchArya 'influenced' politicians to perpetuate caste differences in the name of religious independence, well, I have nothing to comment on it. Hindu religion has several sampradAyas who have the right to maintain their tradition and order, just like the non-Hindu religions for their own traditions. It is this right that is enshrined in Article 26, not just for Hindus, but for all religions practised in secular India.

• As to your question, "Please may i ask, why do NOT the brahmin mathams want to allow NBs in their veda patshalas?", I have a counter question, "Why should they?" You have already shown that temple institutions like that of the TTD, and Ashrams like the Arya Samaj admit NBs to veda chanting courses, so why should not the brahmin maThams follow their sampradAya as enshirined in Article 26?

• As to your view that "most of them are reactionary institutions", I can only say that NB MaThams like the Shaiva AdhInams have a long history, they do study Sanskrit texts and respect brahmins roles. Similar is the case with some other popular Ashrams such as that of shrI Sathya Sai Baba and MAtA AmRtAnanda mayI. shrI KripAnanda vAriyAr also endorsed the role of brahmins in veda chanting and veda yajnas.

• As to Nara's question to me, I have already answered it in the way I prefer to, and I have no further obligation to either him or you on the subject, whatever your views about my answer.

• If you think that the possibility of standards getting diluted if NB boys are admitted to brahmin veda-pAThaShAlas is an imaginary or hypothetical situation rather than a likely practical one, I can only say that you are entitled to your view.

• On the other hand, your re-phrasing that suggests brahmins going to court to fix my varNa status is an imaginary and hypothetical situation. In the present accepted situation (and perhaps legally too?), a brahmin is one born to brahmin parents, as it relates to the caste. Even here, there is the possibility of NBs becoming brahmins by marrying brahmin boys (which is happening), so the situation is flexible.

• As for the brAhmaNa varNa, many NB sages are already described by their devotees as belong to that varNa and have caste brahmin devotees, thereby proving the flexibility--rather than rigidity--of the varNa system.

• You may be right about the numbers of the laukika brahmins involved in wars in the past, but the minority I referred to was the vaidika brahmins.

• As to your views on the punishments for the shudras in the smRtis, and the speculation that such crimes should have pre-existed, I am not prepared to enter into a discussion on whether the caste and varNa system of the Hindu religion is/has been a boon or bane, since I think it would be a waste of time. It is for this reason that I only glance at such discussions, not go into individual posts in detail. IMO (which I don't need to justify), the caste and varNa system has preserved the Hindu culture and civilization and is here to stay, so all discussions about its pros and cons are only academic.

• As to your question "brahmin guru and brahmin shishya will be able to eliminate pata-bhedas", my answer is: "Yes, it has been the case until now since time immemorial. You have shown that there are many NBs being taught Veda chanting by some institutions, so let us see what how they shape up and fare in future."

• I am not getting dragged into a discussion of the lineage of the present day caste brahmins. KP SvAmigaL only talked about the present day brahmins and said that during the colonial times, brahmins were attracted by the prospect of money and position offered by the English education, which resulted in the dwindling of their svadharma of veda pArAyaNa and yajnas in brahmin homes and in public. There have always been two types of brahmins, vaidika and laukika, but the situation, IMO, was not worse before the colonial times.

Thank you for your 'jabbering'. I have nothing to offer on your other observations.
 

happyhindu

Well-known member
namaste smt.HappyHindu.

For a moment I forgot that you are, like Nara, a rationalist who is versed with Hindu religion and history.

• If it is your view that Kanchi PamarAchArya 'influenced' politicians to perpetuate caste differences in the name of religious independence, well, I have nothing to comment on it. Hindu religion has several sampradAyas who have the right to maintain their tradition and order, just like the non-Hindu religions for their own traditions. It is this right that is enshrined in Article 26, not just for Hindus, but for all religions practised in secular India.

• As to your question, "Please may i ask, why do NOT the brahmin mathams want to allow NBs in their veda patshalas?", I have a counter question, "Why should they?" You have already shown that temple institutions like that of the TTD, and Ashrams like the Arya Samaj admit NBs to veda chanting courses, so why should not the brahmin maThams follow their sampradAya as enshirined in Article 26?
Shri Saidevo,

As to the question "Why should they?", I have already stated the reason in both my posts to you. By allowing NBs entry into vedic education they would be conveying a powerful social message that hindusim does not demean and degrade people as inferior or spiritually incapable or slaves by birth. However, it seems that they want to keep caste-discrimination alive. Which is why i ask: May i know what purpose does such segregation serve ?

• As to your view that "most of them are reactionary institutions", I can only say that NB MaThams like the Shaiva AdhInams have a long history, they do study Sanskrit texts and respect brahmins roles. Similar is the case with some other popular Ashrams such as that of shrI Sathya Sai Baba and MAtA AmRtAnanda mayI. shrI KripAnanda vAriyAr also endorsed the role of brahmins in veda chanting and veda yajnas.
Am sorry I should have been clearer. I meant the dalit mathams which are reactionary recent institutions. As for the Shaiva Adhenams, some do admit NBs for training. It is only the Kanchi Mutt that strictly keeps birth based discrimination alive.

• As to Nara's question to me, I have already answered it in the way I prefer to, and I have no further obligation to either him or you on the subject, whatever your views about my answer.
:)

• If you think that the possibility of standards getting diluted if NB boys are admitted to brahmin veda-pAThaShAlas is an imaginary or hypothetical situation rather than a likely practical one, I can only say that you are entitled to your view.

• On the other hand, your re-phrasing that suggests brahmins going to court to fix my varNa status is an imaginary and hypothetical situation. In the present accepted situation (and perhaps legally too?), a brahmin is one born to brahmin parents, as it relates to the caste. Even here, there is the possibility of NBs becoming brahmins by marrying brahmin boys (which is happening), so the situation is flexible.
Brahmins did go to court to fix the varna of communities in colonial India. The Kanchi Acharya, Chandrashekhara Swami did juxtapose some titles as communities and labeled them shudras. The same Kanchi acharya did exhort everyone to follow dharmashastras and varnashrama. So sir, my question was not a hypothetical one. If you were a NB in TN about 100 years ago, what would you do?

• As for the brAhmaNa varNa, many NB sages are already described by their devotees as belong to that varNa and have caste brahmin devotees, thereby proving the flexibility--rather than rigidity--of the varNa system.
Sir, if brahmins follow a NB sage, does it prove that the varna system is flexible?

• You may be right about the numbers of the laukika brahmins involved in wars in the past, but the minority I referred to was the vaidika brahmins.
Today we see quite a few brahmins who claim to be of garga gotra, harita gotra, etc -- are they laukika or vaidika brahmins?

• As to your views on the punishments for the shudras in the smRtis, and the speculation that such crimes should have pre-existed, I am not prepared to enter into a discussion on whether the caste and varNa system of the Hindu religion is/has been a boon or bane, since I think it would be a waste of time. It is for this reason that I only glance at such discussions, not go into individual posts in detail. IMO (which I don't need to justify), the caste and varNa system has preserved the Hindu culture and civilization and is here to stay, so all discussions about its pros and cons are only academic.
If you do not wish to enter discussion on it, i would respect your stand.

• As to your question "brahmin guru and brahmin shishya will be able to eliminate pata-bhedas", my answer is: "Yes, it has been the case until now since time immemorial. You have shown that there are many NBs being taught Veda chanting by some institutions, so let us see what how they shape up and fare in future."
Sir, we do not even know which definition of a brahmin is valid -- that by purvamimansa school or that by the uttaramimansa school. So am not sure how we can claim since time immemorial. Anyways, there are already priests of the arya samaj who have shaped up well. And am told those trained by shaiva adhinams also do well. I also read about lady priests (trained by veda patshalas in other states) who do well. Lets see how those of other institutions fare.

• I am not getting dragged into a discussion of the lineage of the present day caste brahmins. KP SvAmigaL only talked about the present day brahmins and said that during the colonial times, brahmins were attracted by the prospect of money and position offered by the English education, which resulted in the dwindling of their svadharma of veda pArAyaNa and yajnas in brahmin homes and in public. There have always been two types of brahmins, vaidika and laukika, but the situation, IMO, was not worse before the colonial times.

Thank you for your 'jabbering'. I have nothing to offer on your other observations.
Regards.
 
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sangom

Well-known member
@ Sri Sangom - Debate is a BIG word, I would say "Ask questions" to the maths =)

"I get a feeling that you mix philosophy with the social rules, including varna and jaati classifications. IMO philosophies have had nothing to do with the latter."

You mean what was written in scriptures was not meant to be practiced but merely called "philosophy"? That doesn't make sense to me.

I clearly understand the distinction between philosophy, and social rules - this is why I am opposed to using the term "brahminism" to speak of caste discrimination because the varna system was a construct of our society (as a whole), its not like brahmins assigned everyone their "caste". It seems to have evolved by itself as how we would consider occupations in today's world.

Shri Vivek,

Scriptures, according to my knowledge, means "Any writing that is regarded as sacred by a religious group". These need not propound any philosophy. At the same time texts containing philosophy are part of the scriptures. Vedas are mostly a compilation of diverse items, but the philosophical content in the samhitas themselves is very little. The Brahmanas, Aranyakas, and Upanishads often interpret the polytheistic and ritualistic Samhitas in philosophical and metaphorical ways to explore abstract concepts such as the Absolute (Brahman), and the soul or the self (Atman). Even these (Brahmanas, Aranyakas, and Upanishads) contain philosophy and religion in different proportions.

Ill-treatment too, has been practiced by all castes in previlaged positions - and that is just central to human tendencies.

Today, even Dalit leaders in power are misusing state funds, indirectly being the reason for the poverty of people. Should this also be called "brahminism"? The biases under which TN society is in, with its politics and the sense of guilt by which people like Nara seemed to have grown in for being brahmin is what makes them accept such a worldview to see every single mistake of our civilization as starting and ending with us.
I find there is a mix-up of one caste which is in a privileged position framing rules for oppressing other caste/s and Dalit leaders in power misusing state funds. If you are trying to make this misuse as the cause for poverty in India, it is the Dalits who are still one of the poorest sections of Indian society. So, this becomes a case of one section of Dalits oppressing their own caste people. Secondly, you are conveniently foegetting that the names of people with huge balances in foreign banks; it will definitely contain names of all castes, I feel. So, how will you interpret that?

Time to become more mature and level-headed for people like Nara, to understand ill-treatment in society, in any form, for what it is.
This is a direct remark for Shri Nara himself to answer. But I feel I would think twice before branding him as not level-headed. (FYI, we had some serious differences lately.) He has his own pov and puts it very honestly. I do differ from his views on many topics but that does not make me consider him as not level-headed.

Now you and I do not seem to agree on many points here but I do not doubt that your thinking is skewed. Yes it is opposite to mine but it is for me to convince you of my pov. If I am unable to do so, we will agree to disagree and leave the topic at that.

"And today, if you see, nobody - even brahmins - learn the actual philosophical texts like brahmasutra and its bhashyas which are the core texts of the "vedanta" (interestingly, you know
the word vedanta can also mean "end - demise - of the veda"!)."


That makes little sense because none of the vedanta commentators, nor Adi Shankaracharya said the vedas had to be abandoned/destroyed/considered obsolete.

They only claimed the contary.The only meaning that has come out of it seems to say it was the conclusion of the vedas. But this etymology is interesting in how it becomes able for us to translate it as two completely opposite things. =)
If you see little more in detail into the brahmanas and upanishads (I would recommend the satapatha brahmana and brihadaranyaka upanishad to start with) you will find how they go about with what we generally call high philosophy, etc. The reason why Adisankara did not decry the vedas, or "abandon/destroy/consider obsolete" was his "desire" and eagerness to propound his own philosophy. The reason/s might or might not have been eclectic but it was an eagerness nevertheless and for anyone who has really had 'brahmajnaana' such desire was unbecoming, in my opinion.

We have to contrast Sankara's action here with that of Gaudapada, whose mandukya karika was the primal source from which Sankara's advaita took shape. gaudapada did not attempt to "reform" hinduism, nor did any of his disciples including govinda bhagavatpada, though they must have been taught the mandukya karika.

Gaudapada adopts in the fourth chapter - Alatasanti Prakarana - a Mahayana Buddhist style of dialectic quite distinct from the other chapters to explain the relativity of our phenomenal experience and establishes the Atman or soul as the only reality underlying the phenomenal existence. ...Gaudapada shows the deepest respect for the Buddha whom he salutes repeatedly, and quotes freely from Vasubandhu and Nagarjuna. (here) Hence I feel Sankara modified the core outlook of mandukya karika and presented it in such a manner that it was not rejected by the orthodox pūrvamīmāmsakas as heterodox.

As to Sankara's dependence on vedas proper, it is interesting to note that he never once cited the rigveda in his bhashyas, he cites Taittiriya Samhita in 8 instances in two of his bhashyas - Gita and Brahmasutra bhashyas, whereas the maximum reliance he places is on brihadaranyaka (976) followed by chandogya (709) out of a total of 2697 references.

"Within that vedic religion, the six "darsanas" got a place but none of them challenged the caste system-in fact they could not do so while still claiming adherence to vedism."

What is caste system? Today our society has people of various professions, should we challenge this and say all people should be of one profession, or without profession? Obviously, it makes less sense to fight against a social order, when its intergral to society's functioning.

What matters from a moral pov however is giving people chance and how we treat them.
Yes, our society today consists of people engaged in various professions, and every society is, was and will be like that. And no one has said that "all people should be of one profession, or without profession". You are cleverly side-tracking the main point here. It is that people are "born" into particular castes and though they now - under the constitution - enjoy the right to pursue any lawful occupation. But the caste does not change. This social set-up does not seem to be "integral to society's functioning". If at all the caste system is to be termed as "varna" system and made justifiable, all people will need to be reclassified according to their occupation (this is your theory also I think) and caste will be decided by the occupation which one takes up as an adult. This may suit the brahmins now, probably, but the privileged castes of today will not agree.

Hypothetically, if we suppose that this rule comes into force now, how many of the present day brahmins by birth will be ready to accept change-over to sudra, vaisya or kshatriya castes?


"If your objection is to the terms used by Shri Nara which makes you call for a split and group formation, without defeating Shri Nara in debate and making him accept your pov"

If Nara can explain why caste ill-treatment ought to be called "brahminism" when so many others (every upper caste) practiced it, he would have a point against me. So where is the "debate"?
I feel brahmins should take the blame or at least the lion's share of the blame, because the caste system owes its origin, growth, etc., to the purushasukta in rigveda and the various dharmasutras.
There is really no debate with Nara. He spells his bias out openly without seeing how casteism (ill-treating on basis of caste) exists throughout Indian society - and doesn't even find reference in many philosophical works of brahmins. Clearly, their philosophy was their message to the world - only Nara can explain why he wouldn't call that "brahminism", but even a NB upper caste ill-treating a dalit as "Brahminism".
Philosophy as you call it, and even the religion was not applicable to sudras and dalits (in fact they were punished for any violation), but the caste segregation definitely applied to them and was not made inapplicable to them.

"one, that maneeshaapanchakam (mp) is as much an authoritative scriptural text like the vedas and all, and two, Adisankara could not have contradicted himself because it would then make him look silly, and hence it is not possible."

Which contradictions exist? I didn't say there wouldn't be any contradictions because it would "make him look silly", but because the matter of his philosophy had/has been throughly studied/debated for ages, which makes it less likely for it have internal contradictions. In anycase, since you said so point out what you think these are.

Further, I point to the Manisha Panchakam for us to take it as important to carry out the message to fight casteism in the very platform of othrodoxy.
Such a world view is highly blinkered, it seems to me. I had stated that Ramanuja questioned the very tenability of advaita doctrine. The dispute is going on till today and advaitins are not yet able to defend themselves and prove the coherence of advaita, they are unable to question visishtadvaita of its untenability, if any. Ramanuja's doctrine convinced many and gave rise to the vaishnava sect.

If these are not sufficient to you as evidences for the flaws in advaita, you may pl. read the thread "Advaita and its fallacies".

"But to debate with the head of a matham, and to establish your pov, this is not at all sufficient. When I saw your suggestion for such a debate, I expected that you are well-versed in our scriptures, religious lores and the tarkasaastra, the rules of which have to be followed in any
religious debate of value."


What is a debate? Is a string of questions, which critically question an idea of the matham head, a debate? This is what I thought myself (and anyone here) should consider doing. When engaging in all out debate, there is a matter of victory and defeat. Going like a discipile with queries, and putting your answers to the math like queries makes them see your pov and what you understand, without them thinking you came with a challenege.

If anyone is of course confident of their knowledge of the scriptures they could enter a debate.
I would like you to attempt putting the "string of questions" to the head of any matham and see the experience before advising that step.

"Perhaps if you engage in any clash of ideas with the present mainstream mathams, religious heads etc., it will be necessary also to establish the importance of mp first, before going further."
*On what basis does one scripture become more important than the other?

Was Adi Shankaracharya falsely speaking when he composed the manisha panchakam? If not, how is it that we don't employ treating people as individuals and not based on their caste identity, it in our practice of daily life?

These questions is what I would ask, or I would think other should be asking within our community.
mp is not considered as authority in matters relating to caste divisions, the injunctions in the dharma sastras, etc. Even independently, does the mp specifically ordain that there are no caste differences? It only repeatedly proclaims the qualities of a preceptor with the refrain "caṇḍāloऽstu sa tu dvijoऽstu gururityeṣā manīṣā mama" in the first and second verses. Nowhere does it say that a caṇḍāla can study and chant the vedas, perform vedic rituals, and so on. The purport of mp, IMO, is that if, by chance, a caṇḍāla happens to be as enlightened as described in those verses by Sankara, then such a caṇḍāla can also be considered a guru.

"For example, you say. "any philosophical text written by past brahmins because not doing that is to ignore what others have said (in the past from which we quote)"and then cite only BG. It is appropriate to give at least a few instances of the philosophical texts, past brahmins, etc."

Because what I speak is free to check up in the net =)

Since you ask: Varna (Hinduism) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There are other instances too - Chanakya for instance taking a boy of the most humblest origins to make him king would have made do so only after believing that it was possible. If he was a casteist bigot, he wouldn't have tried his revenge against the Nandas through Chandragupta. Its also an openly acknowledged fact that Dalits of today come from lineages that were historically of various castes - they became "dalits" due to their economic, and thereby social conditions.
This looks like sailing on two boats simultaneously; one the varna prescription based on occupation when it suits the purpose, and two, the caste-by-birth norm when such an approach benefits. Here Chanakya cannot be considered a brahmin because he was not confining himself to the six occupations allowed to brahmins by the Dharmasastras, two, he exhibited extreme taamasa guna in
burning with vengeance against the Nandas (Brahmins are considered to be those with satvika nature only), and, three, he was a coward to be considered as Kshatriya; if he were one he would have created an army and fought the Nandas himself. So, what such a "fallen" brahmin did does not merit quoting.

I am not convinced of the truth of the statement that "Its also an openly acknowledged fact that Dalits of today come from lineages that were historically of various castes - they became "dalits" due to their economic, and thereby social conditions."

"I am not very clear as to how "people" doing certain professions becoming "communities" and whether these communities were the euivalents of today's castes. A little elaboration will be of help pl."

In earlier days a profession related to not just a job, but a way of living. This is what formed seperate cultures and thus communities. Take Rajputs, Thevars (kshatriyas) or Iyers or Chettiyars (any groups) etc. Right from the houses, surroundings to what they regarded important, to eating they were different.

These formed communities on the basis of what they shared in common - which became community boundaries. I thought you should have figured that out.

Regards,
Vivek.
I wonder how "a profession related to not just a job, but a way of living"; it is possible that the way of living got related to a job or profession.Rajputs claim kshatriyahood based on a conversion of a few hundreds or thousands of people by a Kashmiri king. Naturally, therefore, they would have had a common way of living.

But about chettiars, thevars or Iyers can we say the same thing? Perhaps these groups, hemmed in by the caste-barrier, developed by inter-marriages and, in course of time the differences in their ways of living got ironed out. But even now, one finds many differences in the ways of living of brahmins even within Tamil Nadu.
 
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OP
OP
Haridasa Siva

Haridasa Siva

New member
மனுஸ்ம்ருதி மாந்தரின் மனு

முன்தலை முடிஎடுத்து குடுமி முடிவேன்
முழுநேர தொழிலாய் வேதம் ஓதுவேன்
முணுமுணுக்காமல் கேட்கும்படி மந்திரம் சொல்வேன்
முழமெட்டு வேஷ்டியில் பஞ்சகச்சம் உடுத்துவேன்

உபவாசம் ஒவ்வொரு விஷேச தினத்திற்கும்
உறங்காத ராத்திரி பலமுறை வருடத்தில்
உதவி எல்லோருக்கும் அத்தனை தினமும்
உரக்க உச்சரிப்பு அத்தனை ஸ்லோகங்களும்

ஆளுக்கேற்ற பூஜை செய்ய மாட்டேன்
அர்ச்சனைத்தட்டை பல்லிளித்து ஏந்த மாட்டேன்
அதிகாரிகளுக்கு வளைந்து கொடுக்க மாட்டேன்
ஆகம விதிகளை காற்றில் விடமாட்டேன்

அமாவாசைக்கு வீடுவீடாய் ஏற மாட்டேன்
அடாவடியாய் தட்சணை கேட்க மாட்டேன்
அத்தனை முறையும் நேரத்திற்கு வருவேன்
அடுக்கடுக்காய் பிராமணார்த்தம் இருக்க மாட்டேன்

இத்தனையும் எப்போதும் பின் பற்றுவேன்
இனிமையாய் புன்முறுவல் பூத்து இருப்பேன்
இம்மியளவும் நெறி தவற மாட்டேன்
இந்தியா கீழே சொன்னபடி இருந்துவிட்டால்

ஊழல் இல்லாத அரசியல்; பணத்தை
உறிஞ்சி எடுக்காத பொருளாதார நிலை
உண்மைக்கு உகந்த மதிப்பு மற்றும்
உரிய முறையில் நாட்டு நடப்பு
 

Nara

Well-known member
Article 26 of the Constitution of India reads:

26. Freedom to manage religious affairs Subject to public order,
Saidevo, separation of state and religious institutions is one of the essential pillars upon which a modern liberal democracy can be built. But, no constitutional right is absolute, not even freedom of speech. For instance, no state can allow nara bali (pun unintended -- some here may like this bali for a particular nara :))in the name of religion. Also, as you pointed out earlier in this very thread, SC held, but later watered down, that Christian do not have the right to convert people, a task that is fundamental to their religion.

So, the question is not one of unlimited rights, but is one of where to draw the line and what kind of line is to be drawn.

I give below some points that may be taken into account in this regard:

  • Reasonable restrictions may be placed in the interest of promotion of public interest and public good,
  • When state subsidies are offered reasonable restrictions may be placed on how the money is used,
  • Whatever the kind of restriction may be, they must not favor one religion over another, etc.
So, one example of how this could affect Veda Patashala is if it receives tax exempt contributions the government may stipulate that the Patashala may not refuse admission on the basis of caste.

I have no idea whether the Veda Patashalas run by Sankara Matam accepts tax exempt funds, but I know Sri Ahobila Matam does, and they do not accept NBs in their Patashalas. They have clever accountants and lawyers who write up the trust documents that seem not to discriminate on the basis of caste, but do so in practice. Further, they have Matam sishyas in government offices who take care of any problems that may arise.


Thus, IMO, the State cannot control brahmin veda-pAThaShAlas into admitting NB boys, or else it would have done it long back.

Personally, I am not averse to NBs learning Veda chanting with proper regard
Well, you also mentioned earlier that NBs are not interested in Veda chanting, and also that they can start their own Patashala if they want. Yes, this is quite correct. Why NBs, even Bs are not that interested in Veda study and, even those who study vedas do so only as a rote memorization task. Most don't have any idea what all the sound they make really mean. A case in point is shradda mantra about unknown paternity.

But the point really is not why NBs can't study the Vedas on their own using CD/DVD, or whether they can start their own school for it. The point really is about the reason for this exclusivity practiced by Brahmins and justified with outlandish arguments, like some you have presented. It is both the exclusivity, and the arguments in its support that make practitioners of Brahminsm hypocritical, and deserving of derision. People who do deride criticize this hypocrisy, they are not asking to be admitted, or wanting a chance to memorize the vedas with the proper pronunciation.

One more point to consider, Sri Ahobila Matam conducts on the average one Ubhaya Veda parayanam each month. Any qualified Brahmin can join the goshti and get paid roughly 2000 to 5000 rupees for five days. This is just Sri Ahobila Matam. The Sankara Matams are probably even more generous and probably have these recitations more often. In other words, a Brahmin boy getting into Veda Patashala can expect to make a decent living off of it. No NB can expect that, even if he is accepted as a shishya by a rouge Vadyar as a pupil, and successfully completes even Ghanam with flying colors. This lack of opportunity to make a living is surely an insurmountable disincentive to pursuing the memorization of Vedas by even the rare interested NB.

Cheers!
 

Nara

Well-known member
namaste smt.HappyHindu.

[...]

As an impartial scholar, I hope you would not brush aside the fact that Manu SmRti is full of interpolations:
Saidevo, Of course MDS is full of interpolations, like most Hindu religious texts. As Happy has already pointed out, it is the religious Matams, both Sankara Matams and SV matams that claim every word in MDS is the truth paramount, extracted straight from the Vedas, and not a single word can be altered.

Also, we must also think about who the most likely interpolators were. One possibility is the anti-Brahmins of the day diabolically inserted these verses to make the Brahmins look bad to late 20th and 21st century people. This is an absurd possibility. Further, how is this even possible given that the Brahmins were the sole guardians of these texts.

The most reasonable possibility is, short-sighted Brahmin orthodoxy, for the purpose of short-term advantage, inserted these verses. So, MDS, with all the glorious original and interpolated verses, is a legacy of Brahminsm, and Brahminism only.


namaste shrI Sangom.


..., but done with extreme shraddha, with explicit, benevolent results.
This myth and superstition is so demonstrably false that even the proponents have to add the caveat, "shraddha". Occasional random successes can be counted as evidence in favor, and the ubiquitous failures marked up as shortcoming of shraddha.

Let us say, for the moment, against all evidence, that if done with shraddha these rituals do bestow benevolent results. Why then this is not demonstrated to the powers that be so that the practice of this can be spread all over the world.

The Christians believe those who don't take Jesus Christ as their personal savior will spend eternity in horrible hell. They take their silly beliefs seriously and spend a lot of time and energy saving as many people as possible from this fate. If the followers of Brahminism do believe in their superstitions, shouldn't they show their concern for humanity by taking these rituals to all corners of the world and spread all the benevolent results to everyone? Those others don't believe is not an excuse, when the Christians try to convert, the target of conversion also has no belief in the Christian message.

Cheers!
 
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Vivek_V

New member
@ Sri Sangom - Who should take what blame?

"Scriptures, according to my knowledge, means "Any writing that is regarded as sacred by a religious group". These need not propound any philosophy. At the same time texts containing philosophy are part of the scriptures. Vedas are mostly a compilation of diverse items, but the philosophical content in the samhitas themselves is very little. The Brahmanas, Aranyakas, and Upanishads often interpret the polytheistic and ritualistic Samhitas in philosophical and metaphorical ways to explore abstract concepts such as the Absolute (Brahman), and the soul or the self (Atman). Even these (Brahmanas, Aranyakas, and Upanishads) contain philosophy and religion in different proportions."

That doesn't answer my question. My question to you was, how can we consider philosophy as something disctinct from what we actually do in life. When a matham head, supposedly learned that vedanta speaks about how all is Brahman actually, how can he judge a person superficially? How does the statements of the manisha panchakam become invalid then?

People just said how arya samaj has failed to remove casteist feelings. While its true that every society does, and will have a social heirarchy, the caste system as it came to be based on birth is irrelevant for the fact that one, it doesnt truely even put the person's traits (of a varna) under the test/scanner and two, the structure of society has itself changed.

Arya samaj didn't challenge casteist thinking at any point even if it was clear they were against it. To challenge casteist thinking we have to start from centers of orthodoxy like the mathams and ask them to explain how their views are not coherent with what is written in say the manisha panchakam or the link I showed you. In the Mahabharata for example, about Yudhishtira defining what makes a brahmin.

"If you are trying to make this misuse as the cause for poverty in India, it is the Dalits who are still one of the poorest sections of Indian society. So, this becomes a case of one section of Dalits oppressing their own caste people. Secondly, you are conveniently foegetting that the names of people with huge balances in foreign banks; it will definitely contain names of all castes, I feel. So, how will you interpret that?"

And why are you trying to interpret my statement in a manner like I made a casteist remark? I am not "conveniently forgetting" anything, my statement "Ill-treatment too, has been practiced by all castes in previlaged positions - and that is just central to human tendencies." was the central point, in which I have mentioned "all castes". Even the affluent Dalits are in a previlaged position.

In the end of the day, there is just the powerful and the less powerful. Nothing is "brahminism" in this (my point to Nara), its central to human tendencies.

"Now you and I do not seem to agree on many points here but I do not doubt that your thinking is skewed. "

I have read about the caste situation. For me to think that Nara's pov is skewered is not a personal attack but based on his understanding that it starts and ends with brahmins - which is why he calls it "brahminism". His ideology puts in danger of spreading a guilt-psychosis, which is central to the theme of political parties like DK and DMK, but which is detremental to our community or any others (or this country) for that matter.

"The reason why Adisankara did not decry the vedas, or "abandon/destroy/consider obsolete" was his "desire" and eagerness to propound his own philosophy."

Sure, which would leave us to attest that Adisankara was a liar through his life on this matter. What a great observation! (sarcasm) If "vedanta" meant "demise of the vedas", I hardly believe brahmins would have continued to regard the vedas past his time, nor would have Adi Sankaracharya told them to.

"Gaudapada adopts in the fourth chapter - Alatasanti Prakarana - a Mahayana Buddhist style of dialectic quite distinct from the other chapters to explain the relativity of our phenomenal experience and establishes the Atman or soul as the only reality underlying the phenomenal existence. "

There is definitely a link, not understood between the Buddhist and the Vedas/Vedic schools. For some reason, Vedic deity like Indra gains prominance in Buddhist legend, and Buddist monks are themselves called "brahmanas" at some places in Buddhist texts. Also, brahmins whose family were previously of the astika schools did start Buddhist schools of thought or spread Buddhism - take that of Bodhidharma, Padmasambhava, Nagarjuna. Lifestyle that buddha spoke of including vegetarianism, meditation were all part of disciplines started by brahmins and their way of life.

In anycase, your idea that Adi Sankaracharya called it "vedanta" to mean "end of the vedas" makes no sense.

"As to Sankara's dependence on vedas proper, it is interesting to note that he never once cited the rigveda in his bhashyas, he cites Taittiriya Samhita in 8 instances in two of his bhashyas - Gita and Brahmasutra bhashyas, whereas the maximum reliance he places is on brihadaranyaka (976) followed by chandogya (709) out of a total of 2697 references."

If we go by your meaning that it is the "demise of the vedas", why would he cite parts of any of the vedas?

"It is that people are "born" into particular castes and though they now - under the constitution - enjoy the right to pursue any lawful occupation. But the caste does not change."

Yes, and that is what I explained (if only you pay attention). Caste has became an identity, because it evolved to separate cultures and ways of life. While that identity does exist - what becomes negative to our society is divisive politics on its basis or ill-treatment on its basis
.
Since caste has come to designate communities, the temperament based definition of caste, in say BG or as defined by Yudhishtira becomes no longer valid today. It doesn't change the fact however, that those (in BG etc) were the original meanings.

"This social set-up does not seem to be "integral to society's functioning". "

And why are you misconstruing my ideas? I said social structure is integral to society's functioning, but its nature is also important. A birth-based social structure is indeed detrimental to societies functioning. Because if a warrior gave birth to a coward, we would place the coward at the battle front. And I never claim this to be intergral to the functioning of society, so continue attacking imaginary ideas.

"Hypothetically, if we suppose that this rule comes into force now, how many of the present day brahmins by birth will be ready to accept change-over to sudra, vaisya or kshatriya castes?"

Not many. But we need to replace these words "brahmin", "kshatriya" etc. because those words already have another meaning today based on communities. What is a brahmin-born who does bussiness? He's a bussiness man, but to call him a "vaishya" (the ancient society's equivalent of the term) affects the caste-based-community thinking that has evolved into people and made its way all the way till politics. So it becomes/appears wrong to call him so, even though that is his actual equivalent in modern society. The caste he calls himself by is (in this era) his community identity and that is "brahmin".

"I feel brahmins should take the blame or at least the lion's share of the blame, because the caste system owes its origin, growth, etc., to the purushasukta in rigveda and the various dharmasutras."

The blame game is of no use. And there is a blame to be taken by all of our society which practiced this. The legend of castes coming from various body parts is completely metaphorical, and with no negative connotation to feet (where the sudras came from by legend). It can be interpretted as foundation, because its the most menial services become very important - the foundation of every bussiness and the ability of civilization to progress. All this description does is compare a society and its functioning to the creator described as a human. None of it says one should ill-treat the other or that its birth-based - because the real struggle is against that.

What you say about "blame taking" is the type of guilt-ridden solution we shouldn't come up with. Unfortunately, its been pumped into many brahmins like Nara, and apparently even you.

"Such a world view is highly blinkered, it seems to me. I had stated that Ramanuja questioned the very tenability of advaita doctrine. The dispute is going on till today and advaitins are not yet able to defend themselves and prove the coherence of advaita, they are unable to question visishtadvaita of its untenability, if any. Ramanuja's doctrine convinced many and gave rise to the vaishnava sect. "

If the advaita philosophy does have contractions, and those are pointed out, we would have to leave it. No harm, but before that we should ourselves make sure we have understood it. Its possible that the whole idea is misunderstood today, because the inconsistencies would have been noted in the discourses of the past.

In any case, the manisha panchakam can still be used on even the orthdox platform to question their practices. Vedanta of any school doesn't speak of atman of different castes as different - neither does the vaishnava sect's philosophy. So irrespective of which sect is followed casteism can be challenged by the very idea of questioning its morality.

"mp is not considered as authority in matters relating to caste divisions, the injunctions in the dharma sastras, etc. Even independently, does the mp specifically ordain that there are no caste differences? It only repeatedly proclaims the qualities of a preceptor with the refrain "caṇḍāloऽstu sa tu dvijoऽstu gururityeṣā manīṣā mama" in the first and second verses. Nowhere does it say that a caṇḍāla can study and chant the vedas, perform vedic rituals, and so on."

"Who is a candala?" is central here. This is the thing that wrritten philosophies are only speaking of appropriate occupation because all the definitions are trait-based, not birth-based.

"The purport of mp, IMO, is that if, by chance, a caṇḍāla happens to be as enlightened as described in those verses by Sankara, then such a caṇḍāla can also be considered a guru."

Yes, which tells us that Shankara was saying that one's trait and not birth matters in this - which passes the point clearly. Now you can call this MP, as not so important. But it does happen to be considered Adi Sankara's own words which is why it will definitely have a place when raised in a matham. You attacked me by saying I need to myself first do this, when all I am doing here is laying a proposal on the table.

"one the varna prescription based on occupation when it suits the purpose, and two, the caste-by-birth norm when such an approach benefits. Here Chanakya cannot be considered a brahmin because he was not confining himself to the six occupations allowed to brahmins by the Dharmasastras, two, he exhibited extreme taamasa guna in
burning with vengeance against the Nandas (Brahmins are considered to be those with satvika nature only), and, three, he was a coward to be considered as Kshatriya; if he were one he would have created an army and fought the Nandas himself. So, what such a "fallen" brahmin did does not merit quoting."


Humans have a mix of all the gunas. So the varna at that point becomes more on predominance of trait, and thus also by lifestyle. In anycase, there is no "sailing on two boats", I have clearly explain how and why the early meaning no longer exists, or can exist. Fallen and risen is based on peoples accomplishments and what they did for the Earth and its people. What makes you say he is a "fallen" brahmin? To Chandragupta who was his every inspiration, he was a guru.

"I wonder how "a profession related to not just a job, but a way of living"; it is possible that the way of living got related to a job or profession."

Yes, they are mutually related which is what I mean. A particular way of living helps one better at a job. A wrestler for instance would eat 8 meals a day (his lifestyle) and exercises which is suited to the profession he does.

"But about chettiars, thevars or Iyers can we say the same thing? Perhaps these groups, hemmed in by the caste-barrier, developed by inter-marriages and, in course of time the differences in their ways of living got ironed out. But even now, one finds many differences in the ways of living of brahmins even within Tamil Nadu."

Because they do have a different lifestyle. So what if its "even now"? Do you find it offensive that brahmins are vegetarians? Or in whatever other ways they have a different lifestyle?

Regards,
Vivek.
 
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