[Advaita-l] mleccha-s not eligible to take Hinduism??

sriram srirudra at vsnl.com
Sun Jul 15 07:50:34 CDT 2012

Dear Sri Jaldhar
Sorry to intervene.How exceptions can be regarded as subsidiary 
rules?Susidiary rules cannot overrule the main rule.Exceptions will remain 
as exceptions only.What Sri Vidhyasankar says is that exceptions are 
inevitable but exceptions should not beome rules.R.Krishnamoorthy.
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jaldhar H. Vyas" <jaldhar at braincells.com>
To: "A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta" 
<advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
Sent: Sunday, July 15, 2012 1:54 AM
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] mleccha-s not eligible to take Hinduism??

> On Thu, 12 Jul 2012, Vidyasankar Sundaresan wrote:
>> The question about exception and SUdra-s is ill-posed. There are only two
>> possibilities: either there are exceptions or there are none at all. In 
>> either
>> case, an exception is not a rule in itself. The rule applies to most 
>> cases
>> that satisfy general criteria. An exception is made only when some 
>> special
>> and specific circumstance or attribute dictates that the general rule be 
>> set
>> aside.
> What we then need to know is what the specific circumstances or attributes 
> are.  At that point the exceptions stop becoming exceptions and then 
> become subsidiary rules.  That's how you "convert" a liberal to a 
> conservative.  :-)
>> My illustrative purpse is this - if there is someone like satyakAma 
>> jAbAla
>> today, most of those who are anxious about dharma would hold his
>> unknown parentage against him.
> ...
>> Now, replace satyakAma with a non-Indian first name, unknown parentage
>> with European/American/African/Australian parentage and gautama with
>> the name of a contemporary brAhmaNa guru who accepts this person
>> and initiates him.
> The two situations are not comparable, let me explain why.  Gautama did 
> not know with certainty if Satyakama was a Brahmana.  But it was atleast 
> plausible that a native of the Kuru-Panchalas could be one.  The chances 
> of him being Swedish were, barring an incredible miracle, 0%.  On the 
> other hand the chance of Shivashankar being Swedish are 100% as he said so 
> himself.  That speaking truth is an attribute of Brahmanas in Brahmavarta 
> does not imply logically that truth is not an attribute of Swedes in 
> Scandinavia.  So a criterion that is useful in the former context may not 
> necessarily be applicable in a wider context.
>> The most that others can do is to refuse to intermarry with him and his 
>> family and to refuse to eat a meal together with him - things like that, 
>> which indicate a level of social ostracism, to mark their displeasure.
> This is another point that must be considered in these discussions. 
> Upanayana is not only a religious act but also a social one.  My son will 
> be undergoing it next year when uttarayana comes around and I have already 
> begun planning for it.  While mostly this involves the details of the 
> vidhi and pujas etc. it also requires booking a hall, deciding who to 
> invite etc.  I plan to focus on the spiritual aspects.  I certainly don't 
> want to turn it into the kind of crass, materialistic orgy of spending 
> which sadly is becoming prevalent.  But the social element is there.  Much 
> has been discussed in these threads concerning the "Hindu fold."  Well if 
> here is such a thing then we must expect converts, gurus, and critics 
> alike to adhere to the norms of the Hindu fold.  Otherwise we will end up 
> with the situation of Yoga which is nowadays just a trendy, vaguely 
> "spiritual" stretching exercise for suburban housewives completely devoid 
> of any Hindu content.
>> Now, if any of us on this list wants to be very strict about rules and 
>> vehement about allowing no exceptions, then the first thing that person 
>> and his family should do is to give up eating at restaurants and office 
>> cafetaria with work colleagues and friends who are not brAhmaNa-s. The 
>> second thing to do would be to refuse to attend and recognize any 
>> interreligious wedding, even if it involves close family members and 
>> friends.
> I believe I did mention this before but it bears repeating.  performance 
> or non-performance of x has no bearing on performance or non-performance 
> of y.  Sure you ought to be consistent in both or you open yourself to the 
> charge of hypocrisy.  But while being a hypocrite can lessen the impact of 
> criticising anothers actions, it doesn't alter the truth or falsehood of 
> the claim.  I doubt if anyone on the list has obeyed the secular law 
> completely but incurring a few parking tickets shouldn't stop you from 
> preventing a theft should it?
>> Is this going to be possible?
> Not only is it possible. It will be necessary if any semblance of astikata 
> is to remain particularly outside India.
>> Living in the United States, I know of very observant brAhmaNa families
>> whose sons-in-law or daughters-in-law are of European extraction and
>> the wedding is conducted as per vaidika rites, complete with pANigrahaNa,
>> saptapadI and lAja homa. I know of cases where the son of an Indian
>> brAhmaNa mother and American father has been given the yajnopavIta
>> with the maternal grandfather doing the brahmopadeSa. And in such
>> rituals in this country, the priests who officiate are well qualified and
>> trained from some of the best and most orthodox institutions in India.
> And what about the children from those fancy weddings?  The immigrant 
> generation observes traditions out of habit thats all.  By and large they 
> have done a rotten job of passing on any of those traditions to their 
> children and the high intermarriage rate is a consequence of this.  It is 
> instructive to compare the experience of the Jews who have gone through 
> the same debate as sociologically they are similar to Hindus.
> Traditionally one is a Jew by birth.  There is a method of conversion but 
> it is intentionally difficult.  In fact a prospective convert is supposed 
> appear before a panel of Rabbis who actively try and dissuade him by 
> telling of all the horrible persecutions that have happened to the Jewish 
> people over the years.  Only if after three such attempts he is still 
> interested is he allowed to convert.  This places a big barrier on 
> conversion but means that anyone who passes through will be firmly 
> commited to the Jewish religion and people.  The Reform Jews decided that 
> it was too difficult and anyone who "really truly believed" should be 
> allowed to convert with a minimum of fuss.  Plus there were beginning to 
> be intermarriages (traditionally grounds for expulsion from the community. 
> Some Jewish parents even performed the funeral rites if their child 
> married a non-Jew.)  It was felt that converting the non-Jewish spouse 
> would keep the family from assimilating into the Christian majority.  But 
> the opposite happened.  The intermarriage rate amongst non-orthodox Jews 
> is approximately 50%.  98% of the grandchildren of such marriages do not 
> identify as Jewish even by the minimal standards of the liberals.  So 
> overall the non-orthodox population is aging and shrinking.
> Meanwhile the vast majority of Orthodox Jews are marrying within the fold 
> and are more Jewishly educated than ever before.  As a result their 
> numbers after generations of decline are increasing rapidly.
> (See here for a discussion of Jewish demographics: 
> http://www.simpletoremember.com/articles/a/WillYourGrandchildrenBeJews/)
> It may seem counterintuitive but more stringency is the winning position 
> not less. In the modern world where one can choose between many religions 
> or
> none without social or legal sanction, religions that make no demands 
> inspire no loyalty.  When you make it too easy to get in, you make it too 
> easy to get out.
>> In effect, I am drawing attention to the fact that brAhmaNa society has
>> changed so much and so rapidly, we can ill-afford to tell the 
>> contemporary
>> satyakAma jAbAla and gautama hAridrumata what they should do or not
>> do for the sake of dharma.
> It only seems like an emergency to you because Brahmana society is 
> currently in the decline stage but we can change the trajectory just as 
> other religions are doing.  The same pattern of liberal decline and 
> orthodox growth is seen in Christianity and Islam as well as Judaism so 
> there is no reason to believe Hinduism will be any different.  Education 
> of the younger generation not exceptions for converts are the key.
> -- 
> Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
> _______________________________________________
> Archives: http://lists.advaita-vedanta.org/archives/advaita-l/
> http://blog.gmane.org/gmane.culture.religion.advaita
> To unsubscribe or change your options:
> http://lists.advaita-vedanta.org/cgi-bin/listinfo/advaita-l
> For assistance, contact:
> listmaster at advaita-vedanta.org 

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list