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

ravi chandrasekhara vadhula at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 27 22:33:49 CDT 2012

Dear All,

There was a situation in our local temple (DFW Hindu Temple) in which was chanted out loud in the childrens' religion class. The children included those of Dvija Jaathis (Those who had Upanayana and those who have not undergone Upanayana yet), Non-Dvija jaathis, and females. I protested against this as #1 should not be chanted aloud and #2there are those without adhikara to Gayatri Mantra. I asked Jaldhar Vyas for refereneces and provided via email. (1,2,3 below  are from Jaldhar)

1.The Gayatri is a vedokta mantra and the same rules apply as for any other mantra.  So I don't think you will find any quotes specifically dealing with adhikara for Gayatri.  But adhikara for Veda mantras in general is clearly restricted to Brahmana, Kshatriya, and Vaishyas only.
See brahmasutra 1.3.34-38.  Shankaracharya, Ramanuja, Madhva
and Vallabha all agree that it is only the traivarnikas who are entitled to learn Vedas.  (English translation of Shankaracharyas bhashya at:
http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/sbe34/sbe34103.htm onwards, Ramanujas bhashya at http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/sbe48/sbe48131.htm onwards.)

2.Among them, only the men may learn Vedas.  This is shown in Shruti itself which consistently uses the masculine pronoun.  See Shatapatha Brahmana 11 5.4  (English translation at:http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/sbr/sbe44/sbe44028.htm) This passage also shows that the principal rite of upanayana is Gayatri mantra diksha.

3.Yagnavalka Smriti lists age from conception based on birth in the trivarnika jaathis, when the son should undergo Upanayana.

4.There is no provision for Shudras and those outside of Chatur Varnas.

5.We know varna is by birth based on Manu Smriti, Vaidyanatha Dixitam quoting Devala Smriti, Gita and the commentaries of Shankaracharya, Madhvacharya, and Ramanujacharya, etc. Smritis and Puraanas list those outside of Chatur Varna.

6.Although due to change in times, materialism, economic circumstances, etc that people born into their varnas may not follow their svadharma exactly/minimally/etc; in general we know which jaathis belong to which varna based on family history which is also corroborated in books, etc (Thurston's Caste and Tribes of South India, Bhattacharya's Hindu Castes and Sects, and some references in Hindu Dharma at www.kamakoti.org)

7.Kanchi Paramacharya in his bbook: Hindu Dharma states that if 3 generations have passed without chanting of Gayatri/Upanayana; then subsequent generations in that family cannot undergo Upanayana.

8.I also read on a Madhva site, that if one parent is a Dvija, and another a Shudra; then the sons have no adhikara for Upanayana.

9.Based on the above; those of non-Hindu/Dvija origin do not have adhikara for Upanayana.

10.  I read in Sanatana Dharma and Hindutva by AH Srinivas that quotes Pooratapani Upanishad and Adi Shankara's commentary on it; that is detrimental for those without adhikara to undergo Upanayana/chant Gayatri.

Ravi Chandrasekhara

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