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Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Wed Apr 3 22:20:19 CST 2002

> Thank you very much for being so considerate and explaining me the
> intricacies involved. As I told you earlier, I have only read the Bhagavad
> Gita and parts of Srimad Bhagavatam. In BG Lord Krishna says that it is
> only through a realized soul that we can understand the Supreme. So, I
> otally agree when you say that we need to learn the vedas only from a
> realized guru.

I should clarify.  What is needed is a guru who is an expert at least in
the proper pronounciation and employment of the mantras.  He may not
necessarily be a "realized soul" in the way Krishna Bhagawan means.
Though if you want to advance further you must find such a person.

> I am from a Smartha Iyer Brahmin family of Tamilnadu and I regret not
> having learnt our scriptures. Instead I was just aspiring for corporate
> success. Atleast now I want to learn them seriously. Of course, it is
> better late than never. I am seriously contemplating a return to India, so
> that I can take up a job there and also learn the scriptures parallelly.

That is a good idea and the quickest and surest path to success.  But
don't count America out completely.  Do some investigation and you may
find some elder in your community who can help.

> Till that happens how I can start building the foundation? Is it a good
> idea if I approach the priests at Livermore Hindu temple and ask them to
> teach me the basics?

It wouldn't hurt to ask them.  In the mean time you can'tgo wrong with
the Bhagavata purana and the Gita.

> Back home, our ceremonies were always performed only
> by certain priests. We follow Sama veda. Does it mean that I can only learn
> from certain priests and not just anyone?

For Vedic stuff yes.  And that will make it a little harder as Yajurvedis
are comparatively more widespread.  (Though some are of the opinion that
it is better to learn the "wrong" shakha than not learn at all.)  But most
of contemporary Hinduism is the same for everyone.

What I tell people is don't worry if you don't become a maharshi
overnight.  As long as there is forward progress it is alright.  Bhagawan
knows the difficult circumstance we live in during this kaliyuga and all
He asks is we try our best.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>
It's a girl! See the pictures -

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