[Advaita-l] Re: Question: Swadharma

Sanjay Srivastava sksrivastava68 at gmail.com
Mon Feb 13 20:00:36 CST 2006

Sri Ram Garib wrote:

> You have
> however raised another thorny issue with sannyasa. I
> understand that as per shankara his teachings are only
> for renunciates. Qualify it further, and renunciation
> is available only to a brahmin male. It seems later
> acharyas made some concessions for kshatriya and
> vaishya also. And yet some included women too. I am
> however not aware if any of them allowed renunciation
> for those born as shudra.

Just as the much debated punishments of manusmriti, here also there is
wide lattitude between the strict theoretical stipulations and actual
practice. I am not sure about shankara maTha-s, but otherwise pretty
much no other established institution insists today on a particular
caste. Chinmaya Mission, Arsha Vidya, Divine Life Society, R. K.
Mission and even Kailash Ashram do not officially ask for caste of
their students. Of course the official shankar maTha policy still
remains ambiguous, but deserving students should not find any dearth
of other equally qualified teachers.


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