[Advaita-l] Brahmin culture under threat

Abhishek Madhyastha abhishek046 at gmail.com
Wed Aug 15 11:57:22 CDT 2012

I advised him the same. He actually went to that purohit and troubled
him till he answered! :-D
He found out that he is a Gaur Brahmin, Sandilya gotra, yajur vedi &
belonging to apasthamba sutra.
But now I have a different dilemma. I read on wikipedia that Gaur
Brahmins are Vaishnavi Brahmins. I know of Vaishnava brahmins, but
what's this Vaishnavi brahmins?

Abhishek Madhyastha

On 8/14/12, Vidyasankar Sundaresan <svidyasankar at hotmail.com> wrote:
>> Although a bit off topic I'm asking for the advice of learned Brahmins
>> here. Some of you may already know this but let me highlight it again.
>> The Brahmins in Haryana are in such a situation that they don't know
>> anything about culture. There is no one to teach them even the
>> Sandhyavandanam! Recently, a Brahmin from Haryana contacted me on
>> facebook. He says that even though many Brahmins living there are
>> interested in learning Sandhyavandanam, there is no one to teach them.
>> All he knows is that he belongs to the Sandilya gotra. He doesn't even
>> know which veda Shakha he belongs to. He wants the Sandhyavandanam
>> mantras and procedure. I being a Rig vedi am facing a dilemma whether
>> its acceptable to give the same mantras that I recite, especially
>> regarding the Abhiivadanam part. Could some learned list members
>> advice me here?
> The first thing to do for such people who are interested in retrieving a
> lost
> heritage is to search through their own family records and community lore.
> For example, Sandilya gotra has multiple sub-divisions when it comes to the
> pravara-s and hopefully some elder in the family knows which one it is. In
> the process, other related details will also emerge. Or else, if the family
> or
> community has a tradition of making pilgrimages to Kashi or Gaya, priests
> in these spots may have some memory of these details. This is getting
> increasingly rare nowadays, but it is not impossible to find out.
> If the person has undergone the upanayana saMskAra, then the priest who
> conducted the ceremony should be able to provide some details. gAyatrI
> japa should be done as the basis of the sandhyAvandana ritual. The other
> prayoga-s in the sandhyAvandana that are specific to family/community
> tradition can be left out till he gets clarity on these details.
> And I feel it is not necessary to get too hung up on veda SAkhA and sUtra
> details. In the past, there were dvivedI-s, trivedI-s and caturvedI-s, who
> could not be classified under any one SAkhA/sUtra combination. Today, if
> a person is serious about learning at least some part of the veda, then he
> should learn it in person from a qualified teacher, not from
> books/recordings.
> And in that case, that teacher should decide what course that person needs
> to follow.
> Vidyasankar
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