[Advaita-l] Re : Karma and Reincarnation; from Ravi Chandrasekhara

ravi chandrasekhara vadhula at yahoo.com
Fri Jul 21 18:17:36 CDT 2006

The posts Lakshmi Muthuswamy are quite thought
provoking and well put.  But here are some of my

As per Hindu Dharma by Chandrasekharendra Saraswati,
varna is by birth.  I agree duties may change as per
individual and even qualities may improve. 
Nityakarmas as ordained by shastras a particular to a
varna by birth and it dictates to some extent
svadharma and possible allowable occupations.  Also
shatras dictate that one's varna by birth dictates
allowable matrimonial alliances, diet, and rituals.

The fact that an individual performs duty, job, and
may transgress dharmic codes or not follow
nityakarmas, and possibly be evil; I suspect is
Parmatma's allowance to use our free will (even
perhaps to our/society's detriment).

The birth in a varna with different guna combinations
are probably the result of prior karmas of prior
births. e.g, a person may have had a desire to serve,
be on a spiritual path free from shackles of
nitya-karmas and material goods; hence resulting in a
birth in a poor religious Hindu Sudra family.  Also
person born to be intelligent and destined to be
wealthy (due to studying in prior births and donating
wealth in prior births); can be a wealthy criminal (it
requires one to be smart and cunning to evade the
law)due to exploiting free will in the current birth. 
There are also those that may perform duties of our
vedic varnas but fall outside of our vedic
varna-ashrama system (e.g. royal families of Europe
are rulers but not "kshatriyas" and have no
adhikara/duty/obligation to undergo upanayana and
vedic study as per Kshatriyas).

One question I asked a few years ago on this list
answered by Jaldhar Vyas, was are Brahmins who eat
beef entitled to upanayana and marital relations among
the Brahmin community, He stated yes but it is akin to
illeterates in a library.  But if they were that way,
it's unlikely they would be your family purohit.

I suppose there also degrees among varnas performing
their dharma/nityakarmas (50% instead of 100% for example)

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