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Enge Brahmanana?

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Raghy

Well-known member
Happy, the Kural in which Thiruvalluvar uses the term pArppAn, he says that even if you forget you can learn it back (maRappinum OththukkoLalAm,). Here, the phrase OththukkoLalAm indicates he is talking about the Brahmnical Vedas. Therefore, Thiruvalluvar must have had Vedic Brahmins only in mind for pArppAn.

Cheers!

I beg to differ, please. In my opinion, ஓத்து (oththu) may not refer to Brahminical Vedas. In most situations, NBs may concern only about mandras for wedding, last rites etc from a 'Parppan'. A 'Paarpan' leads and conducts those rites.

மறப்பினும் ஓத்துக் கொளலாகும் பார்ப்பான்
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும். - 134.

Even if the 'paarppan' forgets such mantras to conduct weeding and last rites, he could always learn it; but if he loses the 'good qualities he should be bornwith' (defacto good qualities), he would be on the decline. Valluvar actually had given an exalted position to caste brahmins. Defacto good qualities.....natural good qualities...commendable indeed. (Sometimes, I do think, may be caste brahmins earned that respect in those days? interesting subject to look at). (Personal experience from my village - Our village had a family of 'panchanga Iyer brahmin; of the 6 boys, 3 of them participated in performing 'vaideega kaaryams' for NBS. One of them was an alcoholic, NV was his favourite food. Some of the villagers were very upset and were contemplating avoiding engaging him...During one such discussions, an elderly NB gentleman quoted this Kural and stopped the unhappy villagers from taking any undue actions. Well, I was very young, one word in that kural sounded very funny to me; I remembered that kural hence).

Interestingly, this is one kural particularly addressed one community. This kural was not written in general. It only shows, that community (caste brahmin) played an integral role in the social structure. In this kural, Valluvar reminds the caste brahmin community about the need to maintain good manners and to the rest of the community to go easy if the caste brahmin didn't remember the mandras well.

Cheers!
 

Nara

Well-known member
சாமான்ய தர்மம்

Saidevo says Thiruvalluvar concealed his Hindu religion and talked only about sAmAnya dharmam because he wanted his message to be universal.

Looking back roughly 2000 years with scant to zero archeological evidence, it is not difficult to construct these kinds of Chicken and Egg question. However, it is not a completely hopeless situation where even diametrically opposite views, such as what Saidevo and I hold, have equal plausibility. All we have to do is to look at what Thiruvalluvar praises and what he does not praise, and it becomes crystal clear that he did not find any value in any of the birth-based special dharmas that is so central to Brahminism.

To clearly understand how far apart Thiruvalluvar's message is from the message Hindu Brahminism we need to contrast his message with that of Manu Dharma Shasthra (MDS). There may be some people who will sigh at this point, here he goes again with MDS. But, remember, hardly a month ago tnkesaven made a spirited case, right here, for how great MDS really is. Nobody objected, and a couple of people even expressed appreciation for his presentation.

Also, we need to keep the following statement taken from Kamakoti.org in mind as well.
".... (the Smrtis) do not reflect the view of the sages who composed them. What the authors of the Smrtis have done is to present us in an orderly fashion what is already contained in the Vedas. The Vedic word cannot and must not be changed at any time and on any account. The same applies to the rules and laws laid down in the Smrtis."
So, I say to those who sigh, let the much revered Brahmnical authority reject MDS in its totality, then I will also join with you and sigh if MDS is brought up.




Volumes need to be written to fully illustrate the contrast between Brahminical values and Thiruvalluvar values. I shall restrict myself to only two categories, (i) who deserves respect, and (ii) what special-birth based dharma Thiruvalluvar did not care for.

Ones deserving of the high respect
I really don't have to to say what MDS says about this -- that by itself says a lot isn't? Anyway, let me give one verse for who deserves respect and two for who doesn't.

  • Verse 1.93: As the Brahmana sprang from (Brahman's) mouth, as he was the first-born, and as he possesses the Veda, he is by right the lord of this whole creation.
  • Verse 7.413: But a Sudra, whether bought or unbought, he may compel to do servile work; for he was created by the Self-existent (Svayambhu) to be the slave of a Brahmana.
  • Verse 7.414: A Sudra, though emancipated by his master, is not released from servitude; since that is innate in him, who can set him free from it?
MDS is filled with such shlokas, page after page, declaring the Brahmanas to be the supreme and Shudras, who actually toil in the fields, and everywhere else, as ones who can never be emancipated from slavery as that is their nature. At this point it is apt to remind us that according to the Hindu Brahminists, these are not just words of mere mortals, but the very immutable truths gleaned from the Vedas.

Now let us see what Thiruvalluvar says.
Kural #972:
பிறப்பொக்கும் எல்லா உயிர்க்கும் சிறப்புஒவ்வா
செய்தொழில் வேற்றுமையான்
.
This kural says all are equal by birth, differences arise only due the differences in occupation. Further, Thiruvalluvar goes on to identify which occupation deserves the highest of respect.
Kural #1033:
உழுதுண்டு வாழ்வாரே வாழ்வார் மற்றுஎல்லாம்
தொழுதுண்டு பின் செல்பவர்.
The ones MDS says are innately worth only to be a slave, Thiruvalluvar says are worthy of the highest of respect from everyone. We must note that this Kural is about farm labor, not the farmer who sits under a tree and supervises the laborers.

For MDS, birth determines who is high and who is slave. But for Thiruvalluvar, at birth all are equal, differences arise due to occupation and farm labor is the highest of them all.

Special birth based dharmas Thiruvalluvar omitted
Here are some verses from MDS that describe birth-based dharmas that are not common to all, but specific to particular Varnas/Jati. Please note the following from Kamakoti.org that makes the case that Jatis are simply subdivisions within each Varna.
There are four varnas - Brahmin, Ksatriyas, Vaisyas and Sudras. We identify "varnas" with "jatis". In point of fact, varna and jati are not the same. The varnas are only the four mentioned above, that is Brahmins, Ksatriyas, Vaisyas and Sudras. Within each there are many jatis. Among Brahmins there are Ayyars, Ayyangars, Raos, and so on. In the fourth varna there are Mudaliars, Pillais, Reddis, Naikkars, Nayudus, Gaundars, Padayacis.
Let us now look at the special birth-based dharmas that MDS is full of that cannot be seen anywhere in Thirukural.

  • 3.76. An oblation duly thrown into the fire, reaches the sun; from the sun comes rain, from rain food, therefrom the living creatures (derive their subsistence).
  • 4.27. A Brahmana, who keeps sacred fires, shall, if he desires to live long, not eat new grain or meat, without having offered the (Agrayana) Ishti with new grain and an animal-(sacrifice).
  • 4.44. A Brahmana who desires energy must not look at (a woman) who applies collyrium to her eyes, has anointed or uncovered herself or brings forth (a child).
  • 4.205. A Brahmana must never eat (a dinner given) at a sacrifice that is offered by one who is not a Srotriya, by one who sacrifices for a multitude of men, by a woman, or by a eunuch.
  • 10.129. No collection of wealth must be made by a Sudra, even though he be able (to do it); for a Sudra who has acquired wealth, gives pain to Brahmanas.
These are but a handful of examples from literally hundreds of birth-based special dharma MDS prescribes. These are the dharmas Thiruvalluvar did not include in his kurals. The claim is, he did not include these because he wanted Thirukkural to be only about samanya dharmam, not because he was opposed to birth-based special dharma.

Really??

Do these in any way at all show Thiruvalluvar was a closet MDS admirer, but omitted all these inane silliness just to make his Kural universal? Do these rules even make any sense at all? There is a reason why MDS is universally despised Thirukkural is universally respected, and that is because the former is filled with vile and the later is free of it.

Cheers!
 

sarma-61

New member
I beg to differ, please. In my opinion, ஓத்து (oththu) may not refer to Brahminical Vedas. In most situations, NBs may concern only about mandras for wedding, last rites etc from a 'Parppan'. A 'Paarpan' leads and conducts those rites.

மறப்பினும் ஓத்துக் கொளலாகும் பார்ப்பான்
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும். - 134.

Even if the 'paarppan' forgets such mantras to conduct weeding and last rites, he could always learn it; but if he loses the 'good qualities he should be bornwith' (defacto good qualities), he would be on the decline. Valluvar actually had given an exalted position to caste brahmins. Defacto good qualities.....natural good qualities...commendable indeed. (Sometimes, I do think, may be caste brahmins earned that respect in those days? interesting subject to look at). (Personal experience from my village - Our village had a family of 'panchanga Iyer brahmin; of the 6 boys, 3 of them participated in performing 'vaideega kaaryams' for NBS. One of them was an alcoholic, NV was his favourite food. Some of the villagers were very upset and were contemplating avoiding engaging him...During one such discussions, an elderly NB gentleman quoted this Kural and stopped the unhappy villagers from taking any undue actions. Well, I was very young, one word in that kural sounded very funny to me; I remembered that kural hence).

Interestingly, this is one kural particularly addressed one community. This kural was not written in general. It only shows, that community (caste brahmin) played an integral role in the social structure. In this kural, Valluvar reminds the caste brahmin community about the need to maintain good manners and to the rest of the community to go easy if the caste brahmin didn't remember the mandras well.

Cheers!

Shri Raghy Sir,

Excuse me for interfering. Among Nambootiris "Oththu" still means reciting/learning/teaching vedams, "Otthan" is one who is learnt in vedams. (I am not sure but i think muslims in Kerala also used this in common talk, in the past, for their children going to madrassa and learning Koran.) Such people guide the yaagams. Since it is generally believed that malayalam came from manipravaalam, an early dialect from which kannada is also supposed to have grown out, i think the word "Oththu" used in Kural is more likely to be vedam recital only.

Somebody knowing Kerala culture more may be able to say if i am right.
 

happyhindu

Well-known member
Happy, the Kural in which Thiruvalluvar uses the term pArppAn, he says that even if you forget you can learn it back (maRappinum OththukkoLalAm,). Here, the phrase OththukkoLalAm indicates he is talking about the Brahmnical Vedas. Therefore, Thiruvalluvar must have had Vedic Brahmins only in mind for pArppAn.

Cheers!

Dear Sir,

Thankyou for the note. From other forums / blogs, etc, i come across varying views so am rather confused. The term "Oththu" perhaps need not always mean Vedas ? (But i do not know what are the Tamil words used for "vedas").

If Vedic Brahmins already existed in Tamilakam at the time of Thiruvalluar, would it not go against the research of George Hart according to whom Vedic Brahmins began arriving in Tamilakam between 100 AD to 700 AD?

Am thinking there must have been people learned in the Vedas (perhaps atharva? or perhaps some lost shakhas? ) before or around 100 AD in Tamilakam.

I was reading some books in english that refer to the Sangam work Perumbaanarrupadai (authored by Rudran Kannanar / Uruttiran Kannanar). This work contains a poem called pattupaattu describing Tiriyan, an early ruler of Kanchi who was considered either a Chola or an early Pallava (Ref: History of the Pallavas of Kanchi by R. Gopalan).

The date of pattupaattu is generally given between 1 AD to 300 AD (Ref: Kanchipuram through the ages, by Srinivasan, P.256). This poem refers to the Yathoktakari (Perumal) temple in Kanchi; which means temples already existed around this time in Tamilakam. And so must have priests.

Am just wondering if the early priests of Tamilakam were followers of some kind of a system that was not exactly related to vedism...

Regards.
 
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happyhindu

Well-known member
Also, we need to keep the following statement taken from Kamakoti.org in mind as well.
".... (the Smrtis) do not reflect the view of the sages who composed them. What the authors of the Smrtis have done is to present us in an orderly fashion what is already contained in the Vedas. The Vedic word cannot and must not be changed at any time and on any account. The same applies to the rules and laws laid down in the Smrtis."
I wonder if historians would agree with that...

As regards the varna-jati stand taken by the Kanchi Acharya, it would have been so much better if he had explained some questions as below..

(a) What worship practices were professed by each warring group in the samhita period ?

(b) Why dasyus and phallus worship were looked down upon by the vedic aryas / devas ?

(c) How and why dasyus were juxtaposed into the term 'shudra'?

(d) Explain (and guarantee) how the dasyus did not become 'brahmins' in the post-vedic period ?

(e) Why smrithis started being written in the late-vedic and post-vedic periods ?

(f) Why Badrayana allowed Vedas for all in his Brahmasutra ?

(g) Why Brahmasutra was included in "Vedanta" ?

(h) Why the Kamakoti Peetham claims to be a "Vedanta-following mutt" when they are propagating the teachings of Jaimini's Purvamimansa (instead of Badrayana's Brahmasutra) ?

(i) Why they claim to be following Vaidyanatha Dikshityam which does not prohibit vedic education to others and yet preach the opposite?

(j) Can they offer any guarantee that the Vedic Words have never been altered in the past?

(k) On what basis would they discredit the view of Arya Samaj (/ Surendra Kumar), according to whom there have been several interpolations into Manusmrithi...

Regards.
 
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Raghy

Well-known member
Shri Raghy Sir,

Excuse me for interfering. Among Nambootiris "Oththu" still means reciting/learning/teaching vedams, "Otthan" is one who is learnt in vedams. (I am not sure but i think muslims in Kerala also used this in common talk, in the past, for their children going to madrassa and learning Koran.) Such people guide the yaagams. Since it is generally believed that malayalam came from manipravaalam, an early dialect from which kannada is also supposed to have grown out, i think the word "Oththu" used in Kural is more likely to be vedam recital only.

Somebody knowing Kerala culture more may be able to say if i am right.

Sri.Sarma Sir,

Greetings. You are not interfering at all. I welcome your views; your views are equally important as anyone else's views. There is no need to request to be excused.

Tamizh culture has its own heridity and growth. We witness 'Siddha medicine', Siva Aghamam, Sangha literature etc to reiterate the advancement of Tamizh culture in various fields including spiritual field. Such developments were, quite possibly independent of Sanskrit Vedas. So, vedas as such may not have effected an impact in the ancient Tamizh's life. It is quite possible, a good portion of the society may have started using rites involving Sanskrit slokas for social and spiritual events. In any case, personally, I can't imagine the ancient Tamizhs allocating too much room for Sanskrit slokams to control their society. It is quite possible, caste brahmin customs extended to NBs coupled with Sanskrit mantras had its own glamour.

In a nut shell, all I am trying to say is, those Tamizh NBs at the time of Thiruvalluvar may have only engaged Parppans for conducting ceremonies; their concerns would have limited to the Sanskrit slokams & mantras in connection to that only. NBs may have been too keen about other vedic rituals and reciting which was done amoung caste brahmins. For example, how many NBs would be keen to listen to 'ghana paadigal' reciting some ghanam?

Cheers!
 

saidevo

Well-known member
namaste everyone.

Dr. Mu.VaradharAjan, a renouned Tamizh scholar, attributes the period 500 BCE to 200 CE for the Sangha kAlam, during which time was composed the 18 classical texts, that are the earliest extant creations in Tamizh literature: the PatthupppATTu--ten idylls, and the eTTutthogai--eight anthologies. I have already given in post 98 a link to the recent research that seeks to fix the date of TolkAppiyam as 711 BCE.

Dr.Mu.Va. attributes the period 100 CE to 500 CE to the Sangham-maruviya kAlam, during which time was composed the other 18 classical texts, grouped as PadhinEN-kIzhkkaNakku nUlgaL--the 18 minor anthology.

Even a cursory look at the content and structure of the eighteen texts of the Sangha kAlam (SK). and Sangham-maruviya kAlam (SMK), should bring in the following main differences between them and throw light on an important point.

• The texts of SK are lengthy, and varied in metre and form. Their contents have beautiful descriptions of nature, divinity, divine forces, life and civilization of the populace, and hyperbolical eulogy of kings the poet calls on.

Whereas the texts of SMK are very short, and employ a narrow range of metrical and formal techniques. Their contents are mostly ethical and morally didactic.

• It is because of the smallness of metre and verse, the SMK texts are called kIzhkkaNakku. Of the eighteen texts, 12 are nIti-nUlgaL, and all of them speak about only sAmAnya dharma. Why?

• Unlike the SK texts, the SMK texts do not sing the praise of kings. In fact, TiruvaLLuvar chides a king with the verse:

iDippArai illAda EmarA mannan
keDuppAr ilAnum keDum.--448

"The king who does not appreciate criticism will perish even without enemies."

We can find kuRaLs that preach dharma by chiding people of other occupations too.

*****

The Sangha kAlam was the time of early Chera-Chozha-PANDya kings, with hundreds of chiTRarasargaL--small kings, ruling small lands under their rule.

The Sangham maruviya kAlam was the time of the Kalabhras dynasty, who invaded TamizhnAdu, ended the rule of the three great kings, disturbed the prevailing order, and created a situation of unrestrained morality and lawlessness in society. This time is generally considered to be dark age--an interregnum. The term maruviya--corrupted, in the expression 'Sangham maruviya kAlam', is an indication to this situation.

Literature being the mirror of the times, the Tamizh poets during the SMK rose to the occasion to assert dharma and establish order in society. This is the real reason they selected and sang only about sAmAnya dharma, and spoke in general and veiled terms about Hindu religion which was the religion of the populace.

Without understanding--or probably ignoring--this main point, Nara, IMO, 'sees only what he wants to see' in TirukkuRaL, Manu SmRti and the AchArya tradition that supports dharma shastras like it, ties the moTTaitthalai and muzhangkAl to use his favourite phrase, and ices the cake of his posts with the chocolate of negativism in the name of rational approach. And some of his progressive friends readily clap around with their 'Yes sir, yes sir!' So much for scholarship, contextual analysis and intellectual honesty!
 
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Nara

Well-known member
......The Sangham maruviya kAlam was the time of the Kalabhras dynasty, who invaded TamizhnAdu, ended the rule of the three great kings, disturbed the prevailing order, and created a situation of unrestrained morality and lawlessness in society. This time is generally considered to be dark age--an interregnum.

Nothing much is known about the Kalabhra period. That period is termed dark ages by the establishment and it just stuck, much like the caricature of Charvakas. I challenge Saidevo to produce one single piece of evidence to show Kalabras created "unrestrained morality and lawlessness in society". But then, given his track record of making outlandish claims and then running away when challenged, does not give me any reason to believe he will do otherwise this time.


Without understanding--or probably ignoring--this main point, Nara, IMO, 'sees only what he wants to see' in TirukkuRaL, Manu SmRti and the AchArya tradition that supports dharma shastras like it, ties the moTTaitthalai and muzhangkAl to use his favourite phrase, and ices the cake of his posts with the chocolate of negativism in the name of rational approach. And some of his progressive friends readily clap around with their 'Yes sir, yes sir!' So much for scholarship, contextual analysis and intellectual honesty!
Saidevo, anger suits you very well, I bet you look cute when you are angry!!!!
 

saidevo

Well-known member
namaste everyone.

மறப்பினும் ஓத்துக் கொளலாகும் பார்ப்பான்
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும். - 134.

maRappinum otthuk koLalAkum pArppAn
piRappozhukkam kunRak keDum.

otthu maRappinum--even if the Vedas that were learnt were forgotten;
koLalAkum--can be leart again (whereas)
pArppAn piRappozhukkam--if a brahmin from the svadharma of his birth
kunRa--swerves, keDum--he will be fallen from that state for ever.

As Nara has rightly pointed out in post 100, the term 'oththu' is a Tamizh name for the Vedas. This means that Raghy is incorrect in his denial of the same in post no.102.

Here is what KAnchi ParamAchArya says about the name oththu for the Vedas:
Tamil Content : kamakoti.org:
My Work from the Chapter "The Vedic Religion And Varna Dharma", in Hindu Dharma : kamakoti.org:

There is a Tamizh name for the Vedas as oththu, a name which is beautiful and with artha-puShTi--replete with meaning, at the same time. That which should be done abhyAsa--repeated reading/study, by only Odhal--chanting, without getting it written, is oththu. This name is found in TirukkuRaL. In the North Arcot district, there is a place called TiruvOththUr. JnAnasambandhar changed a male palm tree into female there. Tiru-oththu-Ur is TiruvOththUr. Since it was a kShetra where the Vedas did pUja to Parameshvara, this name came up. In SaMskRtam, it has the name Vedapuri.

For an explanation of the other Tamizh names for the Vedas, brahmins and their duties, check the link:
Tamil Content : kamakoti.org:
 

Nara

Well-known member
.....For an explanation of the other Tamizh names for the Vedas, brahmins and their duties, check the link:Tamil Content : kamakoti.org:

Folks,

Why do they hate us? To ask this question is to find an excuse for continuing to hold onto our beliefs and act the same way we have always been.

In the aftermath of 9/11 attacks in NY and DC, Americans were totally perplexed, where is all this hatred coming from, what did we do to deserve this, why do they hate us so much, were oft repeated questions? To ask such questions is to be receptive to soothing and reassuring answers. Politicians of all stripes ceased on this and consoled the Americans, nothing wrong with us, we are great, we are free, it is this freedom we enjoy that they hate.

When a population is ready to receive easy answers, they are bound to get only that, easy answers. To solve problems we need true answers, not easy ones.

TBs routinely whine that everybody hates them. The easy answer is say TBs are intelligent, TBs are smart, TBs are successful, the rest are envious, and that is why they hate us. An example of this mentality can be found in the thread தமிழ்நாட்டு அரசியல் அகராதி.

A somewhat similar mindset is found in this link Tamil Content : kamakoti.org that gives not only easy answers to Kural #560, but gives alternative easy answers, a kind of multiple choice answers where all answers are good.
ஆபயன் குன்றும் அறுதொழிலோர் நூல் மறப்பர்
காவலன் காவான் எனின்
Sri Chandhrasekara Shanskarachriyar Swamigal says, Manu defines the six fold duties as:
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[SIZE=+2]òüù‹-ò£üù‹ ( «õœM ªêŒõ¶-Hø¼‚° «õœM ªêŒMŠð¶):[/SIZE]
[SIZE=+2]î£ù‹ - ŠóF‚óý‹ («õœMJ™ ù îV¬í î¼õ¶; [...] îV¬í õ£ƒA‚ ªè£œõ¶)[/SIZE]
Swamigal gives an alternative from Parasara Smrithi:
ÝÁ ªî£N™èO™ ºîô£õ¶ ú‰ˆò£-vï£ù‹. Þó‡ì£õ¶ üð‹ - Ü«ïè ñý£ñ‰Fóƒè¬÷, Üõóõ˜ °ô«îõ¬î Þwì«îõ¬î ºîLòõŸP¡ ñ‰Fóƒè¬÷ üHŠð¶. Í¡ø£õ¶ «ý£ñ‹, Üî£õ¶ ò‚ë‹. ï£ô£õî£è «îõî£ Ìüù‹ - è‰î, ¹wð, Éð, bð, G«õîùƒè÷£™ ß„õó¬ù õNð´õ¶. ä‰î£õî£è„ ªê£¡ù ÝFˆò‹ â¡ø£™ ÜFF¬ò àðêKŠð¶.. Üî£õ¶ M¼‰«î£‹ð™. è¬ìCJ™ ¬õ„õ «îõ‹. ð…êñ‹,  ºîô£ù ü‰¶‚èÀ‹ àœðì úèôŠ Hó£EèÀ‚°‹ ðL «ð£´õ¶ ¬õ„õ«îõ‹.
Which is it, is it what Manu says, or what Parasara says? They don't seem to have much in common. What Manu says may have some entertainment value -- these Yagnas can be real nice time pass, but the last of the six of what Parasara says, Vaisvadevam, seems downright offensive, at least the way in which it is interpreted -- "providing for panchamas, dogs and other animals".

The purport is, if a King does not protect and support the Brahmins who perform these six activities, (take your pick, either the six of Manu or the six of Parasara), then the Brahmins will forget these Brahmnical texts and output of cows will diminish.

Was Thiruvalluvar so steeped in such silly rituals and superstitions, really??

Well, I think it is a travesty to put Thiruvalluvar into a Hindu cage. For a more reasonable explanation of this Kural please click here.

Cheers!
 

Raghy

Well-known member
Sri.Saidevo Sir said -

As Nara has rightly pointed out in post 100, the term 'oththu' is a Tamizh name for the Vedas. This means that Raghy is incorrect in his denial of the same in post no.102.

Sir, Greetings. I am looking at that Kural #134 logically. Formation of the kural indicates, it is addressed not just caste brahmins, but other communities too.Anything that was learned by the 'word of mouth' is 'oththu'. For example, I have not learned to read or write Sanskrit; still I know few slokams by rote because I heard it somany times. I do not know Hindi. But still I know few Hindi songs by rote. Those few Sanskrit slokas and the couple of Hindi songs are 'oththu' for me. Similarly, 'oththu' can be anthing learned by the word of mouth.

'oththu' is subjective. The content changes from person to person. So, the Tamizh word 'oththu' does not indicate Vedas exclusively.

Who is going to 'accept' parppan ? Naturally NBs. That kural was not written exclusively for caste brahmin community. What were the 'vedic' informations shared with NBs in the general society? Personaslly I doubt it was vedantas; one would have difficulty imagining even 'Purusha Suktam, Sri Suktam' etc......logically it has to be the mantras and slokas for conducting various religious rites; homams etc. Logically a NB would only be interested the caste brahmin to remember those mantras when the caste brahmin say the manras on that NBs behalf.

That's where Thiruvalluvar offers a concession to caste brahmins.....

the concession is ..'ஓத்து மறப்பினும் கொளலாகும்' (even if the caste brahmin forgot the mantras he learned by rote, he can be accepted). At the same time Thiruvalluvar reminds the caste brahmins about the need for good character....'பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும்'. Caste brahmins must have been a well settled part of the society when this kural was written. The wider community must have witnessed acceptable character from caste brahmins for so long, from such a large portion of caste brahmins, Valluvar notes such good character as 'பிறப்பொழுக்கம்', (character by birth). Valluvar did not discriminate anyone at birth. In a different kural he said 'பிறப்பொக்கும் எல்லா உயிர்க்கும்' (all the lives are the same at the time of birth). So, if he said ' பிறப்பொழுக்கம்', then one can see it was so prevalent, it can almost be taken for granted.

So, Sri.Saidevo sir, in my opinion, Thiruvalluvar may not have meant just 'brahminical vedas' by the word 'oththu'; for the all practical intents and purposes, 'oththu' could have meant mantras for religious rites.

Cheers!
 

saidevo

Well-known member
namaste everyone.

ஆபயன் குன்றும் அறுதொழிலோர் நூல் மறப்பர்
காவலன் காவான் எனின்

Apayan kunRum aRutozhilOr nUlmaRappar
kAvalan kAvAn enin

The cows' yield will dwindle, and the brahmins who have their six dharmic occupations will forget the Vedas, if the King does not guard his country according to dharma.

Nara says he has "more reasonable explanation" of the above kuRaL in post 21. I can only laugh at this. All that Nara does by way of a 'reasonable explanation' in that post, is to scold ParimElazhagar's urai--commentary, as 'poison' (after the manner of some 'educated NB scholars'), and make a wild guess of what VaLLuvar meant by the term aRutozhil--six occupation.

As if he is himself not satisfied by his explanation about the six occupations he concedes: "We may argue what the six tasks essential are for the well being of a nation, but one thing is certain, Thiruvalluvar was not taking about yield of a cow and that it is related to the six tasks assigned to a Brahmin by their dharmasasthras."

What about the 'A-payan' that the kuRaL starts with? Nara says it 'refers to fruits of labor'; payan means fruits okay, but is there any dictionary that says that the word 'A' means labour? On the other hand, every Tamizh dictionary would say that the word 'A' means the cow. TiruvaLLuvar himself uses this word for cow in another kuRaL, so why should he mean it differently here:

ஆவிற்கு நீரென்று இரப்பினும் நாவிற்கு
இரவின் இளிவந்த தில்.

AviRku ~nIrenRu irappinum ~nAviRku
iravin iLiva~nda dil.--1060

Even if what is begged for is water to the cow,
It would still be disgraceful to the tongue that says it.

By asking the question "Please friends, does this make any sense at all? What is the connection between these six tasks and yield of a cow?" in post 21, it is obvious that our friend Nara fails to see the connection.

*****

In the very second chapter titled 'vAn siRappu'--greatness of the rainy clouds, VaLLuvar talks about how the whole world depends on rains for everything. The very occupation of agriculture that Nara says is highly praised by VaLLuvar, depends on the rains. And rains, even today where they are scarce, are obtained by the veda yajnas. And for these veda yajnas, the products of the cow--its milk, ghee, dung, etc., are necessary.

Thus, if the king does not rule his country in dharma, the first thing to suffer will be agriculture, on which depends the cow (as well as the people for their nourishment), so the cow's yield will dwindle, the aRutozhilOr--brahmins, won't be able to perform the yajnas, and without that Veda karma, the Vedas themselves will be forgotten (since there will be no occasion to chant them).

It is not surprising that people who are atheists, rationalists, anti-Hindus and brahmin-haters, would still fail to appreciate the connection. Whatever their views, the connection between the Veda yajnas and the rains, the cow and the yajna, and the occupation of agriculture as the support of everyone including the ruler, are diehard practical realities--not just esoteric speculations.
 

pannvalan

Well-known member
மறப்பினும் ஓத்துக் கொளலாகும் பார்ப்பான்
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும்

இங்கே 'ஓதுதல்' என்பது 'உரக்க வாசித்தல்' (reading aloud ) என்று பொருள்படும்.

இன்னும் சற்று
நுட்பமாகக் கவனிக்கும் போது, அது recital என்னும்
(1 ) ஒரு கட்டுறுதி உடைய,
(2 செய்யுள் நடையில் உள்ள,
(3) இசை லயத்துடன் கூடிய,
(4) மீண்டும், மீண்டும் திருப்பிச் சொல்லக் கூடிய
(5) ஓர் உயர்ந்த
பொருளைப் பற்றி எடுத்துரைக்கக் கூடிய செயலையே குறிப்பிடுகிறது.

இங்கே 'உயர்ந்த பொருள்' என்பது இறைவனையும் குறிக்கலாம்; அன்றி, அனைவருக்கும் ஏற்புடைய ஓர் நீதியையோ,
தருமத்தையோ, வாழ்வியல் உண்மையையோ, பொதுவான ஒரு கருத்தையோ இவற்றில் ஏதேனும் ஒன்றைக்
குறிப்பிடலாம். அது குறிப்பது எதுவாயினும், கற்பதன் வாயிலாகவே அது அறியப்படுகிறது என்பதை நாம் சரியாக
உணர்ந்து கொள்ள வேண்டும். ஆக, கல்வியும் (வாய்விட்டுப் படித்தல்), கேள்வியும் (செவி வழிக் கேட்டல்) இரண்டும்
இணைந்த தொழிலையே ஓதுதல் என்பது உணர்த்துகிறது.

இத்தகைய ஓதும் தொழில், சமுதாயத்தில் ஒரு வகுப்பாருக்கு உரியதாகவே கருதப்பட்டும், ஏற்றுக் கொள்ளப்பட்டும்
நடை முறையில் இருந்து வந்திருக்கிறது. இதற்குப் பற்பல இலக்கியச் சான்றுகளும் உள்ளன.

இத்தகைய ஓதுதல் பிழைபட்டுப் போனாலும், அதனை மீண்டும் உழைப்பினால் பெற
இயலும். ஆனால்,
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் என்று சொல்லப்படும் அந்தந்தக் குலத்துக்கு உரியதாகக் கருதப்படும் உயர் பண்புகளை ஒருவன்
இழப்பானாயின்
, அது இழந்தது தான்; மீண்டும் பெறுவது மிகவும் கடினம் என்பதே, வள்ளுவர் சுட்டிக் காட்டும்
பாடமாகும்.

 

Raghy

Well-known member
Sri.Nara said -

....The purport is, if a King does not protect and support the Brahmins who perform these six activities, (take your pick, either the six of Manu or the six of Parasara), then the Brahmins will forget these Brahmnical texts and output of cows will diminish.....
Greetings Sir. I wish to disagree with this purport and the purport found here, please. Thiruvalluvar is not connecting support of caste brahmins with cow's yield nor 'ஆபயன்' is 'fruits of labour'.

ஆபயன் குன்றும் அறுதொழிலோர் நூல் மறப்பர்
காவலன் காவான் எனின். - #560.

Purport is, if the King did not rule the kingdom properly, the yield from the cows would diminish and the caste brahmins would forget their scriptures (and everything else in between). In short, the whole society would face hardships.

Rain may fail in a season or two; crops may fail few times due to floods, drought etc. Similarly, there may be too many uncertainities in other aspects of the society. But, a cow would always yield (provided she has a calf, of course) and the caste brahmins would always remember the scriptures. Cows yield and the caste brahmins remembering the scriptures are almost taken for granted. Thiruvalluvar says, If the king failed to rule the kingdom properly, even that would fail.

Here again, Thiruvalluvar wrote in praise of the caste brahmins. Caste brahmins six functions must have been as highly regarded as cow's yield to get compared in the same sentence. Although the functions like 'ஓதுவித்தல், ஈதல், ஏற்றல், வேள்வி செய்வித்தல்' could be performed or sponsored by other NBs, in general one could say, Thiruvalluvar meant only the caste brahmins in this instance since he added ' நூல் மறப்பர் '.

Cheers!
 
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pannvalan

Well-known member
பொதுவாக 'நூல்' என்னும் சொல், வரி வடிவிலான சிறந்த கருத்துத் தொகுப்புகளையே குறித்தாலும், இந்தக் குறளில்
வரும் 'நூல்' என்னும் சொல், வேதங்களையும், அவை சார்ந்த உபநிடதங்கள் போன்ற
புனிதமானதாக
மதிக்கப்படுகின்ற
வற்றையே குறித்து நிற்கிறது.

மேலும்,
பசுக்களும், அந்தணர்களும் அக்கால சமுதாயத்தில் உயர்வாகப் போற்றப்பட்ட செய்தி, சிலப்பதிகாரத்தின்
வாயிலாகவும் நாம் அறிய முடிகிறது.

சரி, 'அறுதொழில்' எனப்படும் ஆறு வகையான தொழில்கள் எவை?

இங்கே 'செயல்' என்பதற்கும், 'தொழில்' என்பதற்கும் இடையே உள்ள வேற்றுமையை நாம் அறிய வேண்டும்.
செயல் என்பது, வினை (activity) என்பதையே குறிக்கும்.. ஆனால், 'தொழில்' என்பது, முழு நேர வேலை என்று
கூறப்படும். ஒன்றுக்கொன்று பொருந்திய, தொடர்ச்சியான பல செயல்களைச சுட்டி நிற்பதாகும். செயல் இல்லாமல்
தொழில் இல்லை; ஆனால்,அனைத்துச் செயல்களுமே தொழில் ஆகா.

வள்ளுவர் கூறும் ஆறு வகையான தொழில்கள் யாவை என்று பார்ப்போமா?

1 ஓதுதலும், ஓதுவிப்பதும் - கற்றலும், கற்பிப்பதும் (learning and teaching).
2. ஓரிடத்தில் அமர்ந்தோ அன்றி அங்குமிங்கும் அதிகமாக நகராமலோ, ஒரே பெயரையும், பொருளையும் திரும்பத்
திரும்பக் கூறி, சிந்தனையை வேறெங்கும் செல்ல விடாது தடுத்து, நிம்மதியை நாடுதல்.- இடைவிடாது ஒன்றை
உச்சரித்தல் (chanting)
3. ஒன்றையே குறித்து, அதை உள்ளத்தில் நிறுத்தி, வழிபடுதல். (meditation).
4. உலக நன்மை ஒன்றையே கருதி, பலருடன் சேர்ந்து, விதிமுறைக்கு உட்பட்ட ஒரு காரியத்தைச் செய்தல்.(வேள்வி)
5. பிறரைச் சார்ந்து வாழ்வதைக் கூடிய வரை தவிர்த்து, உணவைக் கூட இரந்து பெற்று, இறைவனையே எண்ணி
வாழ்வைக் கழித்தல்.
6. வாழ்வின் இறுதியிலோ, இடையிலோ, தெளிவான ஞானத்தை அடைந்து, உடமைகளையும், உறவுகளையும்
துறந்து, பிறருக்கு வழிகாட்டியாகவும் ஆசிரியனாகவும் திகழ்ந்து, பிறவி என்னும் கடனை முடித்து, ஊர் மெச்ச,
உலகமே வருந்த மறைதல்.

இதிலே முக்கியமாக நாம் கவனிக்க வேண்டியது யாதெனில், ஒருவனே இவ்வாறு வகைத் தொழில்களையும் செய்ய
வேண்டும் என்பதில்லை. ஒன்றையோ, அதற்கும் மேற்பட்டதையோ மேற்கொண்டு வாழ்வை இனிதுற, மற்றவர்கள்
பயனுற நடத்தலாம்.

 

Nara

Well-known member
....It is not surprising that people who are atheists, rationalists, anti-Hindus and brahmin-haters, would still fail to appreciate the connection.
Forget me Saiedo, I am a despicable Brahmin hating atheist. Let us take Chandrasekara Sankarachariyar Swamigal. Please address the following two poits:

  • Swamigal, when giving his interpretation of this very Kural, gives two sets of six tasks, one from Manu and one from Parasara. Did Thiruvalluvar also have these two sets of six tasks when he penned aRuthozil, like the Swamigal?
  • In the second set of six, Swamigal says the sixth task is Vasivadevam, which includes feeding Panchaman, dogs, and other animals. Is your contention that Thiruvalluvar also had this sixth task where Panchaman, dogs, and other animals are put in one category, like the Swamigal?

Thanks ....
 

saidevo

Well-known member
namaste Nara.

You have declared yourself to be an atheist--a nAstika to be precise--and a non-comformist. You have been reiterating in your posts that by holding on to their tradition with any feeling of superity, brahmins would only be more and more succumbing to brahmin-haters out there and alienate themselves. It was those brahmin-haters I referred to--not you.

As you know, Nara, everyone has a right to have either a personal opinion, or be on the side of traditional/progressive opinions, or even believe partly in both, specially when it comes to a universal text like TirukkuRaL. So, the point is, why hold one opinion to be superior and bully the other opinion as poison, irrationally traditional, or illogical?

You and I need to defend our traditional and progressive points of view, only if we criticise and attack each other's viewpoint. We might differ or even caution each other about the traps in the viewpoint, but let us not condemn it. You and I are both guilty of doing it, specially in this thread, and in other threads too. I think we can both express our dissent in gentler terms henceforth.

TiruvaLLuvar recommends:

குணம் நாடிக் குற்றமும் நாடி அவற்றுள்
மிகை நாடி மிக்க கொளல்

guNam ~nADik kuRRamum ~nADi avaRRuL
mikai ~nADi mikka koLal--504

Seek the good and the faulty, look for which is more,
and take it to be the nature of a man (or work in this case).

and the Jain poet Tiru MunaippADiyAr, in his work aRaneRichchAram says:

காய்தல் உவத்தல் அகற்றி ஒருபொருட்கண்
ஆய்தல் அறிவுடையார் கண்ணதே--காய்வதன்கண்
உற்றகுணம் தோன்றா தாகும் உவப்பதன்கண்
குற்றமும் தோன்றாக் கெடும்

kAytal uvattal akaRRi oruporuTkaN
Aytal aRivuDaiyAr kaNNatE--kAyvatankaN
uRRaguNam tOnRA tAkum uvappatankaN
kuRRamum tOnRAk keDum--40

Prejudice, and preference, removing them, towards a thing (or subject)
to study is for the wise--with prejudice
existing features won't be seen; with preference
the faults won't be seen either, and spoil the study.

In the circumstances, I am not qualified to comment on KAnchi ParamAchArya's interpretation of TiruvaLLuvar's 'aRutozhil'. As for my own take, I believe that VaLLuvar meant Manu's definition, but I would gladly settle for the excellent interpretation given by shrI pannvalan in post 116, which matches the 'andhaNar enbOr aRavOr' definition of TiruvaLLuvar without omitting the brahmins from being referred to by that name.
 

Nara

Well-known member
Kural #134
மறப்பினும் ஓத்துக் கொளலாகும் பார்ப்பான்
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும்
Folks, this kural appears in the chapter on ஒழுக்கமுடைமை. Therefore, what ஓத்து means is only secondary here. Let it be whatever you want it to be. The key to understand this Kural lies in properly parsing the phrase "பார்ப்பான் பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும்".

The MDS motivated parsing, one that completely ignores Thiruvaslluvar's own declaration that பிறப்பொக்கும் எல்லாவுயிர்க்கும், is
பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்ற, பார்ப்பான் கெடும். What does this even mean, பார்ப்பான் கெடும்? Don't answer that, I very well know what meaning is attributed to it.

A more direct parsing that does not do violence to Thiruvalluvar's own words is,
பார்ப்பான் பிறப்பு, ஒழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும், in other words, ஒழுக்கம் குன்ற, பார்ப்பான் பிறப்பு கெடும். The meaning with this parsing is transparent, no word gymnastics is necessary.

If you have an agenda to put Thiruvalluvar into a Hindu cage, you would take the former parsing. If you have an open mind and accept what makes more sense, then you will have to take the latter parsing.

Cheers!
 
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Nara

Well-known member
You have declared yourself to be an atheist--a nAstika to be precise--and a non-comformist.
Saidevo, nAstika simply means one who does not accept the validity of Vedas. Veera Saivas and the Tamil Saivas who reject the Brahmnical Vedas are nAstikas, but they believe in a personal god who cares about human affairs. So, you are incorrect when you say I have declared myself to be, "a nAstika to be precise".

If you can't resist characterizing me, then the description that comes close is, non-theist and strong agnostic.

To be a simple vanilla agnostic one should hold the view that the existence or non-existence of a deity is unknowable. To be a strong agnostic, IMO, one has to be a simple agnostic, and in addition one must hold the view that the existence of a deity is highly unlikely. This is what describes my stance on religion and god.

But, I am much more than just my view on god. I am a human being first and last. I rather you not try to characterize me at all. Why is that important? It does not make your arguments any better.

Cheers!
 
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