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On Freedom, Responsibility etc.

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sravna

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So much discussion is going on about caste system that I think there is a need for the right perspective. The concepts of equality and freedom do not find the same importance, I think, in the Indian philosophy as they do in the western philosophy. The Indian philosophy is more focused on complementarity and responsibility.

The varnas are not designed to be equal, in the sense there is a clear-cut distinction in what each is supposed to do or not do. But they are complementary in that, each of them has to function for the whole to work.

Similarly there is also a gradation in the extent of responsibility each varna should bear with the brahmins having the highest responsibility in guiding the others. The freedom or "superiority" that they get is only derived from this responsibility.

In my opinion the focus on complementarity and responsibility is a more sound basis for a peaceful society. If the system has not survived today it is because of the unfortunate appeal of materialism and the pressure to comply with the rest of the world
 

Raghy

Well-known member
So much discussion is going on about caste system that I think there is a need for the right perspective. The concepts of equality and freedom do not find the same importance, I think, in the Indian philosophy as they do in the western philosophy. The Indian philosophy is more focused on complementarity and responsibility.

The varnas are not designed to be equal, in the sense there is a clear-cut distinction in what each is supposed to do or not do. But they are complementary in that, each of them has to function for the whole to work.

Similarly there is also a gradation in the extent of responsibility each varna should bear with the brahmins having the highest responsibility in guiding the others. The freedom or "superiority" that they get is only derived from this responsibility.

In my opinion the focus on complementarity and responsibility is a more sound basis for a peaceful society. If the system has not survived today it is because of the unfortunate appeal of materialism and the pressure to comply with the rest of the world

Sri.Sravana,

Greetings. I am very disturbed to read
The varnas are not designed to be equal, in the sense there is a clear-cut distinction in what each is supposed to do or not do. But they are complementary in that, each of them has to function for the whole to work.

If the varnas are designed to be equal, then, they could not be complementary to each other. In a society, trans-migration is important for various groups to be complementary. The varna system did not allow that. The functions became the destiny. In my opinion, varna system was a very bad idea.

Cheers!
 
OP
OP
sravna

sravna

Well-known member
Dear Shri Raghy,

There is no point in trying to force belief in something when it is not a reality. Equality in reality does not exist and the consequences when it is imposed would only be a disaster.

As a believer in vedas I take a broad and a holistic approach and believe that every one has to go through all the stages and no soul is superior or inferior to another. Since our expereinces are related to only one birth we develop a myopic perspective of everything.

Contrary to frequent besmirching of the vedas and holding it responsible for all the ills,the fact is, vedas only say that each soul is brahman or God and puts everyone on the highest pedestal.

Even with respect to a single birth, it not as bad as it may seem or as worse as it is painted by many. Equality is not with respect to the worth of a person. It has relation to the type of things he can do. Gunas primarily reflect the extent a person can transcend his emotions. Such a feature definitely has practical implications and will bear relation to the type of work he can perform effectively.
 
R

R. Ramanujan

Guest
If feel we as are taking our freedom for granted. Now we dont give a damn about our society. Only during any calamity or war we get united. its a old rule minorities are more disciplined. nandri.
 
R

R. Ramanujan

Guest
The flow of money has corrupted us in such a way that we no longer give a damn about others feelings, values. Hinduism is much more than going to a kovil and doing an archanai. We forget about moksha and 7 births. We are not god fearing and running like drunked elephants truncating the poor and weaker sections etc.
 

kr subramanian

Active member
Dear Friends,
What I feel is that the four division made was of one person. His way of life His way of thought etc. When ever a person view with equality without prejudice and works for the benefit of mankind he is BRAHMIN. When his motive is only to earn and enjoy the present life he is VYSYA. When he fights for justice and views opposes the existing system (whatever it may be) he is KSHATHRIYA. and when he is idle not good for anything he is SUDRA.
When the four casts is on the same person and depending upon the time and circumstances his particular cast precipitates. Seeing it outwardly in mankind and compartmentalising is only foolishness.
 

Nara

Well-known member
... works for the benefit of mankind he is BRAHMIN. ..... when he is idle not good for anything he is SUDRA.
If one has to classify the activities a person engages in under these four modes, perhaps a more accurate way of doing it is, IMO, when the person is acting with ego and superiority and benefiting from the labor of others he is BRAHMIN and when he is working hard and producing something useful for all others is a Shudra.

Cheers!
 

AnanthaNarayanan

Active member
If one has to classify the activities a person engages in under these four modes, perhaps a more accurate way of doing it is, IMO, when the person is acting with ego and superiority and benefiting from the labor of others he is BRAHMIN and when he is working hard and producing something useful for all others is a Shudra.

Cheers!
if so, all the four modes will have a certain % of BRAHMINS !
 

Nara

Well-known member
if so, all the four modes will have a certain % of BRAHMINS !
Yes sir, this is true, we all behave well sometimes and badly sometimes. Nobody is a saint at all times, and nobody is a scoundrel all the time.

The problem I see is this attempt to associate anything sublime to the caste name Brahmin and anything unworthy to the caste name Shudra. This is how seeds of superiority and inferiority gets sown in the minds of everyone. This is why, I think, this whole system is an insidious one, it is a beast that silently takes over one's mind.

I like terms that have nothing to do with castes, like சான்றோன் for those with sublime qualities and கயவன் for those with unworthy qualities.

Cheers!
 

kr subramanian

Active member
It is only compartmentalizing. Even though our hands legs and eyes are all in pair and at par we give some preference to the right ones than the left ones. for example left hand .In the same way preference (monetary)is given to mental work than physical. ie a clerk gets more than a labourer.
If we think deeper we can see that all the avatars of dasavatar are ourself at different stages(which includes all cast and beast) Whether it is Mahabharatha or Ramayana it explains our state ofmind at different levels of life.
Later on knowngly or unknowingly people were branded cast wise
 
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