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As Described in Ved, MBH etc.
Taken from  US Braahman Group, by Shivashankar Rao, on 7/5/2012 "Some Statements of Vedas..."

Our society has been organized in such a nice way that if people follow it, they will be comfortable, happy and peaceful; but today it has become fashion to condemn our system of organization of the society and run after the savage system of other countries. Let us consider some of the points.

Caste System
No one can think as to how a small minority of people who had neither the military might (Kshatriya) nor the power of wealth (Vaishya) to back the society could keep millions and millions of people under their thumb for thousands of years except by the sheer power of their noble character and a life dedicated to the welfare of all. And how Shoodra had served all the three Varn without any hitch.

P V Kane quotes in his "History of Dharmashastra" the words of a Christian missionary Abbe Dubois, "I am well convinced that if the people of India never sunk into a spate of barbarism and if when almost all of Europe was plunged in that dreary gulf, India kept up her head, preserved and extended the sciences, the arts and civilization, it is wholly to the distinction of castes that she is indebted for that high celebrity".

Swami Vivekaanand said ( see: India and her problems), "We believe in Indian caste system as one of the greatest social institutions that the Lord gave to man. We also believe that though the unavoidable defects, foreign persecutions and above all, the monumental ignorance and pride of many Braahman who do not deserve the name, have thwarted in many ways, the legitimate fructification of this most glorious Indian institution, it has hardly worked wonders for the land of Bhaarat and is destined to lead Indian humanity to its goal".

Gradual Decadence
Men decay when wealth accumulates. Concentration of power leads to corruption. The upper castes developed vested interests in their positions, status and power. Instead of striving to to serve the society through these, they tried to subjugate it for selfish ends. It naturally produced reactions and conflicts. There was disturbance of equilibrium and peace of the social structure. The need-based pattern of life yielded its place to greed-based one and unrest was the natural result.

Who is a Braahman?
There are different views expressed as to who a Braahman is.
Mahaabhaarat (MBH), Anushaasan Parv (35-1) mentions that a person becomes a Braahman by birth. (Janmanyva Mahaabhaag Braahmano Nam Jaayate).
The same view is expressed in Chhaandogya Upanishad (5.10.7). Because of this only, Vidur, Shree Raam, Bharat, Yudhishthir and Shree Krishn etc., who were such noble persons were not considered as Braahman. Even they also respected Braahman. But then, what do the Ved say? Let us see.

Rig Ved (7.103.8) describes a Braahman as, "Braahmanasaha Somino Vaachamarkrat Brahm Krinvanthah Parivatsareenam. Adhwaryavo Gharminah Sishvidhaanaa Aavirbhavanti Guhyaa na Kechit“ (fully nonviolent, engaged in good deeds and deep meditation, propagate pure knowledge through lectures etc, recognize merit in others. They do not hide anything.)

Similar sentiments are expressed in some other Mantra also - Rig Ved (7.103.1), Atharv Ved (5.17.9), Yajur Ved (26.2), etc, Rig Ved (5.34.6) also says “ A Braahman should bring even a Dasyu (Daas, or slave, or Shoodra) to the good path”. Rig Ved (2.22.2) ordains that a Braahman should move with the light of knowledge. (Jyotirgraha). Rig Ved (6.63.5) prescribes that Braahman should try to increase Aatm Bal, should be efficient in work, and try to raise the standards of others.

Vashishth Smriti lays down that a Braahman’s body is not for enjoyment. It is meant for difficult Saadhanaa and ultimately to attain Moksh. (Braahmanasya tu Dehoyam Nopabhogaaya Kalpate. Iha Kleshaaya Mahate Prethyaanant Sukhaayaach). Paathanjal Mahaabhaashya says - ”Tasmaat Braahmanen Nishkaarano Dharmah Shadango Vedodhyetavyo Gneyashch” (A Braahman should learn Ved without expecting any returns). They should be good-natured, without laziness, and remain calm. (Aaadhav Babhravaha Somah). All these qualities of a Braahman have been condensed in a simple verse in the MBH -
"Satyam Daanam Kshamaa Sheelamaanrishamsyam Tapo Ghrinaa.
Drishyante Yatra Naagendra sa Braahman Iti Smritam"

Thus it can't be concluded that a person does not become a Braahman by birth alone. Braahmanism has to be earned with effort.

That is why Krishn clarified the concept of Gun-Karm Vibhaag in (Geetaa, 4-13). 
"Chaaturvarnyam Mayaa srishtam Gun Karm Vibhaagashah". ..(The four fold Varn was created by me based on Gun and Karm…)
He further clarifies…. in chapter 18, (Geetaa, 18-41).
Braahman Kshatriya Vishaam Shoodraanaanch Parantap
Karmaani Pravibhaktaani Swabhaav Prabhavairgunai.

(The duties of Brahman, Kshatriya and Vaishya as also Shoodra are distributed according to the Gun..)
I think we should retain the Braahmanism given to us by birth and it requires real effort.
In Geetaa, 18.42, he lists the duties of Braahman.

To make a living by choosing a profession as per one’s desire and aptitude is a common phenomenon seen in all civilized societies. The fact that there was enough freedom to choose one’s calling is evident with the examples of Vishwaamitra and Veetahavya who were Kshatriya kings and chose to become Braahman sages by their Vaidik learning and austerity. Parashuraam Jee and Dronaachaarya Jee were Braahman by birth but they chose arms and fighting as their profession.

Swaamee Vivekanand has made a wise remark, "Two ways are left open to us - the way of the ignorant, who think that there is only one road to truth and that all the rest are wrong - and the way of the wise, who admit that according to our mental constitution or the plane of existence in which we are - duty and morality may vary. The important thing to know is that there are gradations of duty and morality, that the duty of one state of life in one set of circumstances, will not and cannot be that of another."

Bhagvad Geetaa therefore insists that a man should shape his ideals according to the type to which he belongs to, and thus endeavor to follow his Swa-Dharm. Krishn goes to the extent of saying this in Geetaa (18-45) - "All mankind is born for perfection and each shall attain it, if he follows his nature’s duty - "Swe Swe Karmanya Bhiratah Sansiddhim Labhate Narah.."

Shri Sudhakara Chaturvedi, the well known authority on the Ved has brought out two books dealing with the subject.
1. "Janmagat Jaatibhed Ved Virodhee (the Jaati Bhed by birth is against Ved).
2. "Vedokt Jeevan Aadarsh (the Vaidik ideals for living).
Others like Swaamee Chidbhavananda, Swaames Harshaanand have also discussed this subject.

Yudhishthir and Nahush Dialog on Braahman
Here is quoted the actual conversation between Yudhishtira and Nahush and as per Ved Vyaas - Nahush in the form of the snake asks Yudhishthir --
Braahmanah ko bhavedraajanvedyam kim cha Yudhishthir
Braveehyatimatim twaam hi vaakeiranumimeemahe - Shlok 20

Yudhishthir replies as follows….
Satyam daanam kshmaa sheelam Aanrshamsyam tapo ghrinaa
Drishyante yatra naagendra sa braahmn iti smritaha - Shlok 21
(Hey Naagendra, in whom truth, Daan, Kshamaa, Sausheelya, Udaarataa, Tapas, Dayaa - all these characteristics are found, he is called Braahmana.)

Chaaturvarnyam pramaanam cha satyam cha brahma chaivahi
Shoodreshwapi cha satyam cha daanam Krodha Eva cha
Anrishansyam Ahinsaa cha ghrinaa chaiva Yudhishthir
Vedyam yachchhaatra nir-dukham sukham cha naraadhip
Taabhyaam heenam padam chainman tadasteeti lakshaye - Shlok 23, 24.
(the characteristics you mentioned as those required for Braahman, if found in a Shoodra, will he become a Braahman)

Yudhishthir’s reply vide Shlok 25 and 26...
Shoodretu yadbhvellakshma dwije tachchh na vidyate
Naiv shoodro bhavechchoodro brahmano na cha braahmanah.
Yateitallakshyate sarp vrittam sa braahmanah smritah
Yatre tanna bhavet sarp tam shoodramiti nirdishet

(If the characteristics mentioned are with a Shoodra and not in the Braahman, Shoodra is not a Shoodra and the Braahman is not a Braahman. Whoever has all these characteristics is the Braahman. The one who does not have these characteristics, but has Kaam Krodh etc, and does Kroor Karm, he cannot be a Braahman.)

The Shlok that follow at 34, 35, and 36 further amplify this. Shlok 37 declares
Yatre daaneem mahaasarp Sanskritam vrittameeshyate
Tam braahmanamaham poorv Amuktavaan bhujagottam

(Sanskaar means Sad-vritti. One who has no Sad-vritti has no use for the Sanskaar. One who has all the good characteristics along with Sanskaar is a Braahman).

Yudhishthir and Yaksh Dialog on Braahman
Let me now quote some portions of the conversation between Yaksh and Yudhishthir

Yaksh's question:-
raajan kulen vritten swaadhyaayen shruten vaa
braahmanyam ken bhavati prabroohyetatsu nishchitam.. Ch 313/Shlok 107

(By what achievement a person gets Braahmanhood - is it by Kul, Vedaadhyayan, education, or behavior?)

Yudhishthir replies
shrunu yaksh kulam taat na swaadhyaayo na cha shrutam
kaaranam hi dwijatwe cha vritti meva na sanshayah.. ..Ch 318/Shlok 108

(Neither Kul nor dynasty, nor Ved Adhyayan and education are causes for Braahmanatva. Sadaachaar is the main cause. There is no doubt about that).

Yaksh's another question :
kah panditah... ......Ch 318/Shlok 97

Yudhishtir :
Dharm Gyaan pandito Gyeyo.... Ch 318/Shlok 98.

The Geetaa defines Pandit as
Vidyaa Vinaya Sampanne Braahmane gavi hastinee
Shuni chaiv shwapaake cha panditaah samadarshinah.

Who Are the Shoodra?
Those who were not capable of independent judgment or initiative adequately and merely assisted by manual labour were termed Shoodra.
They were very much a part of the Aaryan society. They did enjoy their own social status and honor. According to Aapastambh Dharm Sootra (, they could offer their services as cooks and host their food to all the others in the society. (Gautam Dharm Sootra 17.1,  and 17.6). Shoodra were entitled to spiritual knowledge and wisdom through Itihaas and Puraan. Gradual decline of the Shoodra's status in society could be because of several historical reasons. Untouchability which is undoubtedly a blot on the society is not to be found anywhere either in the Vaidik literature or in the Dharm Shaastra. (One may compare this with the treatment of Bushmen of Africa and Australia and the Negroes of America by the white men. It is mentioned that there were untouchables even among local Muslims also in Arabia - vide G S Ghurye - "caste and race in India")

A reappraisal of the entire caste system to plug the loop holes is called for. Education of the population is one sure remedy. The solution is not in reducing the higher ones, but by raising the lower ones to the higher levels.

Swaamee Vivekaanand, who himself was not a Braahman, advised the others - "You are suffering from your own fault. Who told you to neglect spirituality? Why do you not spend millions to spread Sanskrit education to all castes? The moment you do these things, you are equal to the Braahman. That is the secret power of India." He says again - "Unity moves should begin at the levels of sub-castes gradually integrating them into the main Varn, thus restoring the original four Varn system" (see "complete works" of Vivekaanand).

Manu Smriti says - "Braahman living in a land ruled by Shoodra become degraded by associating with fallen people at their place of work."
It further declares - "If a Braahman disassociates himself from lower caste people and associates only with higher caste people, he attains greatness. If he does the opposite, he becomes a Shoodra (Manu Smriti, 4. 245).
Many of the modern professions fall under the category of Shoodra's domain and a Braahman should not take employment from anyone (especially from Shoodra).

In this regard the Koorm Puraan says - "Those Braahman who make a living from protecting cows, engage in trade, become artists, take the occupation of servants, and lend money on interest are no better than Shoodra." "O Braahman, one who does not study the Ved but carefully endeavors for other pursuits is certainly foolish and ostracized from Vaidik life. Braahman should not speak to such a person."

Braahman as Shoodra
But, Bhaagavat Puraan speaks of a permissible exception and mentions the circumstances in which a Braahman may pursue another occupation. 11. 17.47 says that if a Braahman can not support himself through his regular duties and is suffering, he may adopt the occupation of a merchant and overcome his destitute condition by buying and selling material things. If he continues to suffer extreme poverty even as a merchant, then he may adopt the occupation of a Kshatriya. But under no circumstances become like a dog, accepting an ordinary master. Bhaagavat Puraan (12.3.35) also states that this is one of the symptoms of Kali Yug. It says, "Businessmen will engage in petty commerce and earn their money by cheating. Even when there is no emergency, people will consider any degraded occupation quite acceptable."

The Dharm Shaastra declare that if one takes birth in a Braahman family but does not cultivate scriptural knowledge, he cannot be accepted as a Braahman. Vishnu Dharm Shaastra 93.7 says that religious- minded people should never give even a drop of water to the hypocritical son of a Braahman, who is ignorant of the Ved. Manu Smriti 2.157 says that a Braahman who does not study the Ved is similar to a wooden elephant or a deer made of skin, ie an elephant or deer only in name but does not function effectively as such. Manu Smriti further, 2.172, says that until a Braahman qualifies himself in the Ved, he is on the same level as a Shoodra. MBH, Shaanti Parv 8.189.7 says that Braahman who lead a life of violence, lies and greed, who are impure and indulge in all kinds of Kaarmik activity in order to maintain their lives are degraded to the status of Shoodra. Such a person, who eats anything and everything without discrimination, who is attached to worldly things, who will accept any occupation just to make money, who has given up Vaidik Dharm and proper behavior is called a Shoodra.

Then Who is a Braahman?
Let us weigh our respective merits and conclude as to where we are as Braahman?

Concept of God in Sanaatan Dharm
God has been described by various terms in Sanaatan Dharm - Bhagavan, Dhaata, Eeshwar, Paramaatmaa, Parameshwar, Prabhu, Vidhaata etc etc. Hinduism does not depend upon a single scripture. Depending on the needs and tastes of His votaries He can appear to them in any form they like to worship and respond through that form. He can also incarnate Himself. He can also be the impersonal or absolute Brahm - this word means "infinitely big". It defies all description. It is the basis for all existence, consciousness and joy - Sat-Chit-Aanand (existence-consciousness- bliss). In one Vaidik hymn, Indra with a body clad in golden armor, being very strong, descends on to the Earth, fights and overcomes his enemies to establish his own domain. Again, Varun is also raised to the level of God (Atharv Ved, IV, 16, 1-5.). Hiranyagarbh is perhaps the highest in conception with a concrete name (Rig Ved, 121.1-2.).

The Purush Sookt describes God as, "with infinite heads, unnumbered eyes, and unnumbered feet and beyond all predicates….” It is clear from this that there is a total rejection of pantheism. God is seen as the ultimate energy in and beyond all creation and never identified with it.
From the concept of God as personal being, Vaidik seers passed on to the final conception of an impersonal, remote Force. Tad Ekam. The Naasadeeya Sookt explains this concept beautifully.

Swaamee Vivekaanand exclaims - "It is a grand explanation - one that has given the theme to all subsequent thought in India and one that will be the theme of the whole world of religions - Ekam Sat Viprah Bahudhaa Vadanti…..” It is true that we have many Gods, but in appearance only. In reality, we have only one God who is called by various names.- Indra, Varun, Hiranyagarbh, Raam, Krishn, Shiv, Shakti …etc etc, Whichever of these is chosen for adoration, that one becomes God himself, in whom every thing exists including all other gods.

The question as to why there are elementary ideas of God as well as the most advanced in the hymns requires to be examined. This represents a graduated scale of Vaidik conceptions for varied stages of religious attainment. Some may be beginners; some may even be seers and sages. Ved cater to all according to their own needs. For some flying is taught, for some others walking has to be taught. To those who are at a lower stage, polytheism is taught and for those at a higher stage monotheism is taught. To those who are at the top of the scale, a notion of God, who is so impersonal, devoid of any thing describable in human terms, is given. Thus there are contrasting spiritual levels of Vaidik hymns and this shows the variety and flexibility. The central oneness is its remarkable capacity for adaptation.

What is Karm?
Karm means work, profession, duty. It means action which binds one to Sansaar. It can be accomplished by body, speech or by mind - Kaayik, Vaachik and Maanas.

It can also be classified as Sanchit (accumulated), Praarabdh (bearing fruits in this life) and Aagaamee (being performed now giving the fruit in future). The effect of Karm of one life cannot be exhausted in this or one life only, hence Punarjanm.

Gyaan or realization of one's nature. as the immortal soul, destroys Sanchit Karma and make Aagaamee karm incapable of producing results.
However, Praarabdh Karm has to be exhausted only by experiencing it or by enjoying its fruits.

Karm is of two kinds - Nishiddh Karm (prohibited actions) and Vihit Karm (duties to be performed). The Vihit Karm could be either Kaamya Karm, Nitya Karm and Naimittik Karm - desire-motivated, daily duties, and occasional actions.

Karm may also be classified according to their nature - good or bad. Actions without being tainted by selfish motives are called Saatwik Karm. If they are mixed with likes and dislikes, they could be Raajasik. And if they are motivated by evil intentions, they are Taamasik.

As long as we identify ourselves with the body and mind complex, we undergo constantly the transmigration brought out by the Karm.
Soot Sanhitaa describes four kinds of Moksh : (1) Saalokya - living in the same world as God; (2) Saaroopya - having a similar form as God; (3) Saameepya - living near God; and Saayujya - getting identified with God. Taittireeya Sanhitaa, Aitareya Braahman, Brihadaaranyak Upanishad and Chhaandogya Upanishad also contain these ideas. Destruction of Ignorance through Knowledge of the self is the sure way to Moksh. But there are others who advocate Nish-kaam Karm or Bhakti as the means to attain Moksh

Praarabdh Karm
The Karm which had been already started in the past, and are giving their results now are our Praarabdh Karm. It is these Karm which have caused the present birth. Praarabdh Karm also decide on the duration of space as well as various experiences - good or bad. Like an arrow once released cannot be taken back, even Jeevan Mukt people are seen to suffer these effects.

Karm Yog
After goading Arjun for action, the Lord puts it to him to convert bondage creating Karm to bondage breaking Karm Yog. He also emphasizes on the supremacy of Gyaan – the spiritual illumination. Both the paths - Karm and Gyaan, are conducive to the knowledge of the Self. Shree Ramakrishn says that we should make a knot of the fact that the goal of life is to merge in Godhood (in a corner of your Ang Vastra) and then plunge in the discharge of our duties. The three Gun - Sattwa, Raj and Tam, are always in a flux. While entangled in Prakriti, it is impossible to renounce Karm. As long as we are suffering from the disease of ignorance, we cannot go out of the hospital of Prakriti. The treatment is only Karm and the moment we are cured with the knowledge of the Self, we are discharged from the hospital of Prakriti. Karm by itself is neither good nor bad. It is the motive behind it that makes it bad or good. When the ego gets obliterated, the action becomes sacred. Ego can be compared to an onion. If we go on peeling the skin of the onion one by one, nothing is left in the end. Thoughts, words and deeds have to be directed towards the good of the world and to the glory of the Lord. All creatures are to be respected as various manifestations of the Lord Naaraayan. When any work is performed with the right frame of mind, it becomes a Yagya.

What is Meant by Satya (Truth)?
Satya has been defined as "that which is unaffected by Time, Place and Causation". this simply means that "Satya" stands for God. The absolute. Several Sahastra Naam use this word to denote God. An extension can be "Anything that helps a man's progress towards God is Satya". A-Satya stands for all that is opposed to Satya. Whatevr is untrue, unreal, evil, and crooked is A-Satya. Braahm is the only Reality and the world and the individual souls are not permanent. The apparent truth or the illusory appearance, the world of our day to day experience and the only Truth that really exists, these are the three degrees of reality.

Science has recognized that matter is merely the way in which a fundamentally mental universe appears to our finite intelligence. This typifies the tendency of modern physics to introduce a distinction between appearance of things and their reality. The reality is other than the appearance. Hence scientific knowledge is not of reality, but of appearance. The famous scientist Sir Arthur Eddington confirms this when he says, "The stuff of the world is mind stuff..... the familiar world is a mental creation. The external world of physics has become a world of shadows. In removing our illusions, we have removed the substance for indeed we have seen that substance is one of the greatest of our illusions." This is what Shankar in his Dakshinaamoorti Stotra emphasizes when he says, "Vishwam Darpan Drishyamaan Jagatee Tulyam Nijaantargatam".

Plato had also indicated the same thing when he said, "this world is a shadow." Kent also agrees with this. Eiseberg compares the religions of the world and concludes, "A-Dwait Vedaant provides a complete philosophical and conceptual framework within which the findings of advanced  physical science can be placed without stress or fear."

Monism (A-Dwait) seemed unattractive as long as scientists had to believe in the separate natures of matter and energy. But now that matter and energy have been proved to be equivalent aspects of one underlying the same thing (with Einstein's research) the appeal of monism has been greater, if not irresistible. That is why Will Durant exclaimed - "In his short life, Shankar achieved that union of sage and saint, of wisdom and kindness which characterizes the loftiest type of man...." Charles Johnston goes a step further when he says - "Is he not the guardian of the sacred waters, who by his commentaries has hemmed about, against all impurities of times, jealousy, first the mountain tarns of the Upanishad, then the serene forest lake of Bhagvad Geetaa and the last deep reservoir of the Sootra, adding from the generous riches of his wisdom, lively fountains and ponds of his own, the crest jewel, the awakening and discernment?"

Dr Paul Deussen says - "The system of the Vedaant, as founded on the Upanishad and Vedaant Sootra and accompanied by Shankar's commentaries on them - equal in rank to Plato and Immanuel Kant - is one of the most valuable products of genius of mankind in his researches of the eternal truth - philosophical conceptions unequalled in India or perhaps anywhere else in the world.......  Eternal philosophical truth has seldom found more decisive and striking expression than in the doctrine of the emancipating knowledge of the Aatmaa."

Romain Rolland is more emphatic when he says, "The only religion that can have any hold on the intellectual people is the monistic religion of A-Dwait." Rev JF Pessen - "Great credit is due to Shankar and his school for having fought strenuously against the upholders of self existence of the material world and brought the whole universe under the sway of God whom it owes not only its origination but also its very being. Shankar understood that the independent existence of another being would imply limitation of God." Bacon says - "In Shankar's philosophy, we find a harmonious coordination of Shruti logic, Karm, Bhakti, Gyaan, and practical Vedaant in his A-Dwait philosophy, the only philosophy which has proved capable of successfully withstanding the challenge of Alien thoughts is the philosophy of A-Dwait. This continues to be the national philosophy."

The Aashram System
(1) Aashram or stage - Brahmacharya (student life)
Age - 5-27
Description - The child would live with his family till he was at the age of 5. He would then be sent to a Gurukul (house of the guru) and typically would live with a Guru (teacher), acquiring knowledge of science, philosophy, scriptures and logic, practicing self-discipline and celibacy, learning to live a life of Dharm (righteousness) .
Rituals of transition - Upanayan at entry.

(2) Aashram or stage - Grihasth (household life)
Age - 27-54
Description - The ideal householder life is spent in enjoying family life, carrying out one's duties to family and society, and gainful labor.
Samavartana at entry. Other rituals of Hindu marriage later.

(3) Aashram or stage - Vaanaprasth (retired life)
Age - 55-81
Description - After the completion of one's householder duties, one gradually withdraws from the world, freely shares wisdom with others, and prepares for the complete renunciation of the final stage.

(4) Aashram or stage - Sanyaas (renounced life)
Age - 82-108
Description - One completely withdraws from the world and starts dedicating to spiritual pursuits, the seeking of Moksh (freedom from the cycle of rebirth), and practicing meditation to that end.

Four Purushaarth of Human Life
The Ashram system is believed by the Hindu to lead to a fulfillment of the four aims of life namely, Dharm (righteousness) , Arth (wealth), Kaam (pleasure), and Moksh (liberation).

Developmental stages of life, Period, Aashram (stages of dutiful life), Purushaarth (aims of life), Description

Shaishav - 0–2 years - No moral codes during this period
Baalya - 3–12 years - Brahmcharya Dharm, Vidyaarambh, Learning of alphabets, arithmetic, basic education according to Varn
Kaumaar - 13 - 19 years
Kaishaurya - 13–15 years - Brahmcharya Dharm
Taarunya - 16–19 years - Brahmcharya Dharm
Yauvan - 20 - 59 years
Yauvan-I - (Tarun Yauvan) - 20–29 years - Brahmcharya or Grihasth Dharm and Arth
Youvan-II - (Praudh Yauvan) - 30–59 years - Grihasth Dharm, Arth and Kaam
Vardhakya - 60+ -
Vardhakya-I - (Period-I) - 60–79 years - Vaanaprasth Dharm
Vardhakya-II - (Period-II) - 80+ years - Sanyaas Dharm and Moksh

(2) Ved never mention Caste (4 castes) which are chosen by profession after birth and not pre-ordained - occasionally 4 Aashram mentioned. In Ved, no religion, no caste, no sect. Ved do not mention the 4+4 Varn Aashram.
--Castes are not mentioned, but Varnaashram Dharm is ancient. Sanaatan Dharm is for every person in the world and is thus a universal religion. There is every thing of all religions in it.

My Response: How do you distinguish Varnaashram and Aashram and Varn Aashram? Pl. Elaborate.
--Can you deny that many Rishi lived together with their wives, the relation being Dharm Patnee. A person not having living wife, ineligible to do Hom or Yagya or giving Havishya. I do agree that some Rishi, but not all, took Vaanaprasth, leaving wife outside.

what is the caste of Vishwaamitra, Vaalmeeki, and Vyaas Jee? Were they Braahman by birth? Surely not. By option or by choice, they transformed themselves into Braahman Varn. Before Shaantanu (father of Bheeshm) married Matsyagandhaa, a fisherman's daughter, while the Kanyaa was operating boat, a great Rishi, Paraashar, traveled in the boat and loved her. A son was born with beard and mustaches called Vyaas. After that, that woman (called now Satyavatee) formally married Shaantanu. It means, Vyaas inter-caste or outcaste or Shoodra (because his mother was of fisherman caste. I did not hear that Muni Pallelu where sages lived in groups, never caste word was used. Caste by birth post-Vaidik age. Even earlier, during Raamaayan and Mahaabhaarat ages, many non-Braahman became great Rishi or Brahmans (from Kshatriya or even Shoodra or Chaandaal. Hence, how fair is it to talk that depending on Karm, one take's birth in Braahman caste family. Is it not non-sense?

(5) Ved do not speak about Jagame Maayaa, Ant Maayaa and never ask humans not to enjoy. (The concept of Maayaa explains the ignorance of the real nature of Aatmaa. It is the result of A-Vidyaa).

(6) Ved do not mention the names of Gods (that we popularly pray and temples on these gods, Vrat and festivals on them are abundant). Ved never say any God (including Raam, Krishn, Shiv, Narasinh, Brahmaa) to be No. 1 or No. 2. There is no word like Krishn or Shiv or Brahmaa in Ved but
Paramehwar, Sarv Antaryaam, Purushottam are found. In Ved, the terminology is Omniscient, Parameshwar, Sarv Antharyaamee. No mention of Krishn or Vishnu terms.

[There is a mention of 33 deities. Please see my article on the concept of God in the Ved published by the USB forum.]
My response: You said only "a mention of 33 deities", but in Ved the names of various deities were never repeated, except Indra, Varun, Agni, Soorya, Ashwinee Kumaar, Pavan, Paramaatmaa, Param Purush, Sarv Antaryaamee. You also did not contradict the names of popular names of Gods like Krishn, Raadhaa, Raam, Seetaa, Narasinh, Vaaman etc. Hence I assume they're not in Ved? Also, can you pl. forward your article on the concept of God in Vedas?

(8) Ved speak about living together, helping others, serving others, in brief Sahanaa Bhavatu, Sahanau Bhunaktu, …..Mavidvishavahi” . It is
full of Yagya or emphasizing Yagya, pray God, for rains, good crops, wealth, energy, Sat Santaan, and after enjoying Moksh. Invoking Karm results is rare. Invoking "Karm Philosophy, Chain of births and deaths of the same person to enjoy Punya and Sins of the last bodily activities" is not observed or rather not emphasized. Ved are neutral on Karm philosophy repeatedly preached in Geetaa.

[Krishna blessed us with the concept of Karm without expecting a particular result - Karmanyevaa adhikaarah maa phaleshu kadaachanaa).
My Response: Can you pl. touch on the contents in Ved, instead of Geetaa, please?

(9) Karm not found in Ved.
[Rebirth is a fundamental concept of Sanaatan Dharm. Karm theory is accepted here. However, if you are referring to the Karm such as Nitya Karm, Naimittik Karm etc, these are for Chitta Shuddhi only and not for Moksh or liberation which can be only through Aatma Gyaan as explained by Aadi Shankaraachaarya.]
My Response: Sanaatan Dharm is preached in Ved or other literature? What is Sanaatan Dharm? And what is Sanaatan Dharm Karm theory? Elaborate, if possible.



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Created by Sushma Gupta On 05/27/04
Modified on 08/17/12