Saturday, September 27, 2008

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 100 (of Vol 2) dt 19 April 2008

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 100 (of Vol 2) dt 19 April 2008

(Continued from Deivathin Kural # 99 (of Vol 2) dt 17 April 2008, under the Heading, Dharma Sastram [Smruthi].)

22. In marriages for example, ceremonies such as ‘Arathie’, ‘Nalangu’, ‘Oonjal / pachai poosuvadu’ and ‘Sobanam’, are all done as per directions of the elder women of the house. Similarly, for example while erecting the ‘pandal’, for various functions; you have to consult the ‘Pandalkarar’ before the first pole is imbedded in the ground, because depending on the function to be held, he may have a different shape of the ‘pandal’ in ‘Aideekam / tradition’. Similarly depending on the type of work, people of the Fourth Varna were very much consulted and their words carried value and veto power! This meant that, Women and Sudras had their say and not ignored. Sastras did not force down everything but, gave much freedom of expression in a very democratic manner.

23. Dharma Sastras very clearly spell out the samskaras and anushtanas meant for the Sudras. That caste has not been ignored or relegated out of consideration at all. The relevant portions are covered in the Deekchideeyam in the Varnasrama, Aanhika and Srardha Kandams. Normally these are divided into two portions as Aachara and Vyavahara Kandams.

24. To indicate that I belong to this religion, there are some outer indicators, known as ‘Chinnams’. People belonging to Scouts or Army, Navy or Air Force, have their distinct uniforms. Police itself have so many divisions, with clearly defined dresses, belts, badges and caps. Though by changing any of the distinguishing marks, their jobs do not change, they do have their discipline and orderliness. This order and discipline is very much needed in the observance of religious practices too. So, for all Ashramas (of balyam, brhmacharyam, vaivahikam and sanyasam) and Castes, their work and distinct marks have all been clearly defined. How to wear the Veshti or Saree and what marks to wear, is all clearly given. These are not only meant for Social controls but have a deeper, inner and subtle purpose of individual cleansing and ennoblement.

25. The attender in the magistrate court wears a sash known as ‘Davali’. The officer does not wear this. We do not ask as to why, it is so. But we are ready with numerous objections, when it comes to Class and Caste distinguishing marks on a mistaken sense of equality. What is required is clarity of oneness in heart and mind while accepting all distinctness in the functional world of transactions. That is how we were, with variety in the social fabric and sense of unity in the hearts. Integrity was ensured through differentiation enabling functional efficiency at the work place. The opposite is happening now. On the name of equality, we are doing away with class distinctions while fighting on imaginary ills said to have been inflicted, generations in the past. We will wear ‘rock’ and ‘pop’ signs because others are doing so! Anything western is in. Anything Indian and especially Hindu, is all superstitions to be abhorred. Spiderman can fly and not Hanuman. We call ourselves the reformers called, ‘seer thirutakkarars’ and wear a black shirt and red and black flag and give these signs a higher precedence than God!

26. Smruthies are not amendable documents! Even amongst people who have respect for Dharma Sastras, there is a misconception that, those who wrote them did so independently on their own free will. Those who have written the Smruthies are not law-givers. Like some legal experts get together and make or suggest amendments to the constitution, they think that these Smruthies give independent view points of their authors and so are open for corrections and amendments! Many people have approached and asked me, “Why can we not change the Sastrams and make them more suitable to the changed circumstances of the modern times?” To further reinforce their argument, they resort to flattery too. They say, “You are as good as any of the Rishis of the past who wrote the Smruthies. So why don’t you make some suitable amendments, as we wish?” Their request is proper, if only, the Smruthi Kartas wrote them on their own! But the fact is that they are not authors of the Smruthies. They have only collected what is said in the Vedas and we cannot play around with the words of the Vedas! Period.

27. I may not be capable of influencing you to strictly follow the dictates of the Sastras and Smruthies. But certainly, I do not have the power or authority to suitably amend the Smruthies to your or anybody’s convenience! If Rishis have written all this on their own volition, then we may accept or discard any part of it. Many people are writing whatever comes to their minds in so many ways even now. We can also create our own publications, (and even blogs and U-tubes!). But since the Smruthies contain verbatim Veda Vakyas and explanation/ commentary on them, we should be preserving them in pristine form forever. “OK. If that is so, I will agree with what you say. But what is the proof that they are re-iterations of what is in the Vedas?” That is the question to be answered now.

28. Smruthies are Based on Veda Vakyas. The biggest proof is the word of Maha Kavi Kalidasa. Sankara, Ramanuja and Madhva, have all confirmed that every word of Smruthies are closely dependent on the words of the Vedas. “But they were religious leaders. They were keen on protecting Sampradaya/traditio n. So they are likely to say so. Who else says so?” A poet is not likely to do so. He would not be interested in maintaining the religious traditions. Remaining neutral, he is more likely to tell the truth. Mahakavi Kalidasa talks of the Smruthies in ‘Raghu Vamsam’.

29. Rama’s father is Dasaratha. His father was Ajha. His father was Raghu. So Rama got his great grand father’s name. Very rarely is he referred as, Dasarathi, by his father’s name. The tradition was normally to refer a child by the grand father’s name. By that logic, Rama should have got Ajha’s name. But it so happened that, Rama’s great grand father Raghu was so famous that, Rama got his name as, Raghava.\

(To be continued.)



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