Ashish Chandra ramkisno at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Jan 25 16:04:47 CST 2000

>From: Anand Hudli <anandhudli at HOTMAIL.COM>
>Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2000 20:49:22 +0000
>On Thu, 20 Jan 2000 05:15:43 -0800, Ravisankar Mayavaram
><miinalochanii at YAHOO.COM> wrote:
> >svadharma denotes one's dharma according to the varNa and Ashrama in
> >life as laid down by shaastra-s.
> >
> >What is the recourse if one is unable to follow it?
> >
> >I think sharaNagati is an answer.  Unable to follow his svadharma,
> >confused and helpless, does not arjuNa surrender to God saying maam
> >tvaam prapannam! (verse kaarpaNya doshho ...). Sometime back I asked
> >the list how advaita-vedanta perceives and understands sharaNaagati.
> >The message of giitaa is God will come as guidance and rescue to those
> >who surrender and enable them to do their svadharma and lead them to
> >moxa.
> >
> >Please share your knowledge on this subject.
>  The gItA also has the verse 3.35, "shreyAn.h svadharmo viguNaH para-
>  dharmAt.h svanushhThitAt.h ..." (also 18.47). Even if one performs
>  one's own dharma without proper completion of all the components
>  of the relevant karmas, it is still better than the dharma of another
>  which is performed well. The gist is it is better to perform the
>  varNa-Ashrama duties to the best of one's ability rather than giving
>  them up completely.
>  Anand
And what if one is engaged in activities that are contrary (hence
prohibited) for one's Varna ? eg, a Brahmana in the army, an accountant
Kshatriya, a Brahmana farmer ?

I was reading about Darbhanga Raj yesterday. It was basically a kingdom
established in Bihar wherein the local Kshatriya ruler was deposed by an
Aghan and replaced with a Brahmin. It ended with Independence in 1947 and
was run by Maithil Brahmin kings. There are also instances of Brahmin kings
in Maharashtra (Peshwas) and in Sindh. Considereing that varnaashrama dharma
is not adhered to these days, what could it have been that compelled
Brahmins to become kings when the majority of the population followed the
Smritis strictly? The reason why I bring this up is because I thought that
the deviation from varnaashrama dharma is fairly recent, which is ofcourse
not entirely true.

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