Periyava Quiz-Who is responsible for the collapse of Varnashrama Dharma?


mettur1

Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara – Here is the answer to the previous quiz.

Who is the elder brother of Bhagawad Gita?

Ans: f. None of the above.

The correct answer is “Deepavali”. – Click Here for details.

A lot of people gave their own opinions and rationale which may or may not be correct but the question was who Sri Periyava thought and not us :-). Couple of them gave the correct answer but the reasoning was slightly off. But still, I will give it to them 🙂 Bhagawad Gita is the younger brother to Deepavali (not elder as some mentioned).

Here is the next one. According to Sri Periyava,

Who is responsible for the collapse of Varnashrama Dharma?

1. Government
2. British
3. Moghuls
4. Movies
5. Independence Struggle
6. All of the above
7. None of the above

Hint: Answer is in Deivathin Kural. Please post your answer along with a brief explanation on why Periyava thinks so. Ram Ram



Categories: Devotee Experiences

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22 replies

  1. None of the above. I feel as per Periava it is Brahmana kulam is responsible. If brahmains did not leave their Swadharmam then even if other Varnas get spoiled, there is a chance to get back on rails . But alas Brahmins ( including adiyen ) are more towards material & bodily comforts left Swadharmam causing the collapse of Varnashradharmam.

    • I agree with Shri Ravishankar. Periyava has time and again exhorted the Brahmins to follow their swadharmam as by leaving the path they have not only brought ruin on themselves but on the entire structure of Varna dharmam. Till about a hundred years back, there were no strong casteist feelings as the Brahmins led by example. Once they were enticed to take up other vocations for which the Government was to some extent responsible, foresaking their dharma, the others followed suit. In fact Periyava goes to the extent of saying that the Brahmins by taking other vocations and coming to occupy high posts in government run organisations, blocked the avenues open to the other Varnasramis thereby causing resentment and fear which has led to the sprouting of the justice party and subsequent kazhagams that spread brahmin hatred.

  2. As per Deivathin Kural, it is only the Brahmins who are responsible for this sad state of affairs. Formerly, Brahmilns commanded a great respect due to pious living as per Shastras. Then other communities gave them land, grains and money as DHANAM to enable Brahmins to carry on with the Vedic practices, which enabled the whole society to live peacefully and prosperously. During British period, Brahmins started occupying jobs because of their intellectual superiority, which of course they inherited due to forefather’s following dharma at every level and stage of their lives. It was like a bicycle running due to the erstwhile pedaling for some distance without further pedaling. But Brahmins took it for granted, became complacent and abandoned their Vedic practices. They not only occupied higher posts in the British days, but also started aping Britishers. The dress and habits changed. All these days, other communities were looking at Brahmins with some reverence, have started looking down upon Brahmins. Other communities started questioning the olden practice of respecting Brahmins. “In what way Brahmins are different and superior to us”? was the question raised by the other communities. “Why they should occupy high posts”? Therefore, Brahmins started getting the heart burn without any substantial merit.

    The above are the basic reasons for the edifice of Varna Ashrama to crumble. Brahmins are basically responsible.

    Even, today in the changed era, if Brahmins maintain some basic ethical and moral standards, everyone will respect us.

    LET US LIVE A LIFE OF SIMPLE LIVING & THINKING!! THEN WE WILL BE ABLE TO REBUILD THE COLLAPSING EDIFICE.

    JAYA JAYA SHANKARA!
    HARA HARA SHANKARA!!

  3. As per Deivathin Kural, it is only the Brahmins who are responsible for this sad state of affairs. Formerly, Brahmilns commanded a great respect due to pious living as per Shastras. Then other communities gave them land, grains and money as DHANAM to enable Brahmins to carry on with the Vedic practices, which enabled the whole society to live peacefully and prosperously. During British period, Brahmins started occupying jobs because of their intellectual superiority, which of course they inherited due to forefather’s following dharma at every level and stage of their lives. It was like a bicycle running due to the erstwhile pedaling for some distance without further pedaling. But Brahmins took it for granted, became complacent and abandoned their Vedic practices. They not only occupied higher posts in the British days, but also started aping Britishers. The dress and habits changed. All these days, other communities were looking at Brahmins with some reverence, have started looking down upon Brahmins. Other communities started questioning the olden practice of respecting Brahmins. “In what way Brahmins are different and superior to us”? was the question raised by the other communities. “Why they should occupy high posts”? Therefore, Brahmins started getting the heart burn without any substantial merit.

    The above are the basic reasons for the edifice of Varna Ashrama to crumble. Brahmins are basically responsible.

    Even, today in the changed era, if Brahmins maintain some basic ethical and moral standards, everyone will respect us.

    LET US LIVE A LIFE OF SIMPLE LIVING & HIGH THINKING!! THEN WE WILL BE ABLE TO REBUILD THE COLLAPSING EDIFICE.

    JAYA JAYA SHANKARA!
    HARA HARA SHANKARA!!

  4. Sorry I posted my comments without reading Shri Ravichandran’s and would like to be excused for repeating what he has already stated.
    Jaya Jaya Shankara

  5. Dear Shri Kannan Sethuramanji,

    There is no need to feel sorry Sir. You too have echoed from the golden page of Deivathin Kural. All of us being the devotees of Lord Sri Mahaperiyava have to spread HIS Message in ONE VOICE.

    JAYA JAYA SHANKARA!
    HARA HARA SHANKARA!!

  6. None of the above

  7. In an interview with A S Raman, Periyavaa mentioned that every caste including brahmins have contributed in collapse of varnashrama dharma. He actually went on to explain that brahmins when renounced vedic lifestyle and actually started pursuing wealth and personal goals, they did their part in collapse of system.

  8. Well, the answer is complicated.
    First, on a close reading of Deivaththin Kural, the onus is squarely on the Brahmins for, it is they who first left their villages and swadharma and went to cities in search of jobs (other modes of living.) This is the reason why Periyava was not prepared initially to come to Madras during his first padayatra. Prominent people had to plead with him to visit Madras, and he came in 1932.

    Second, on a slightly different level, reason No.6 is the answer. What made the Brahmins leave their places? As if they had had a meeting and taken a collective decision? It was not a stray incident, but an exodus- which still continues, and goes even beyond India !

    Hinduism (Barahmanism and Brahmins ) always needed Kshatriya protection. They lived at the mercy of the social order which was guarded by the Kshatriya kings. ( Even Visvamitra needed kshatriya power to guard his yajna.) Buddha came and most of the Kshatriyas embraced monastic order, abandoning their innate dharma. Consequently, when the invaders came- Muslims and others- there was not enough of Kshatriya power to defend Hinduism.

    After many centuries, Vijayanagar empire rose to defend Hinduism. Vedic religion was protected in the South. After Vijaynagar’s fall, Marathas rose with the specific idea of “Swaraj” and during their rule in the South, Tanjore belt under the Serfojis became the fortress of Vedic dharma. But when the Europeans came. Madras became the centre of their struggle. The very prosperity of Tanjore ( it was fabulous- read the Economic History of India by Romesh Dutt ) attracted the greed of the Europeans and the British combined with the nawab of Arcot plundered Tanjore and reduced Serfoji to a state of dependence. Tanjore’s prosperity ended. Brahmin’s lost their patronage and protection.

    The British introduced new economic systems and political arrangements. The self-contained village communities declined and gradually disappeared.

    Then the nationalist movement under Gandhi muddied the waters. On the one hand, most educated Brahmins were attracted to his ideas. On the other, it led to people at large questioning the old order- especially its land tenancy and other mutually dependent arrangements in the name of reform. It was no more possible to make a living in the villages.

    There was no king to protect the dharma and no social order (local community ) to make it possible for Brahmins to live as Brahmins. As Tirukkural says:

    அந்தணர் நூற்கும் அறத்திற்கும் ஆதியாய்
    நின்றது மன்னவன் கோல். 543

    It is the sceptre of the King which is the mainstay of the science of the Brahmins (VEda) and their dharma.

    ஆபயன் குன்றும் அறுதொழிலோற் நூல்மறப்பர்
    காவலன் காவான் எனின். 560

    The udders of the cows will yield less milk, and the Brahmins will forget their science if the King does not rule with righteousness.

    Today, with the rise of party politics even in villages, it is not safe for Brahmins ( especially with school going girls ) to live in villages, especially in Tamil Nadu where law and order means party rule.

    At the basic level, this is due to the march of Kali Age. This has been happening in all the old civilised countries of Europe, such as England. Oliver Goldsmith has described it in “The Deserted Village “[ Written in 1770] This came to India a century later, but we Indians do not study social history.]

    Now even the family system is falling apart.

    Brahmins have been the victims, not the villains.

    Simple living under modern conditions is expensive! Volumes have been written on “Voluntary Simplicity” [Duane Elgin and others]. Yes, one can do it, if one has earned enough to merit/afford retirement!

  9. மஹாபெரியவா சொன்னதாக ஒரு புஸ்தகத்தில் படித்த ஞாபகம் (புஸ்தம் பெயர் தெரியவில்லை)……”த்ரோணரையும் , குசேலரையும் compare செய்கிறார்…துரோணர் தன் ஸ்வதர்மத்தை கடந்து ஆயுதம் ஏந்தி போர் செய்கிறார் ..(அவர் தன் குருகுல நண்பரின் அரண்மனை சென்று ..பால் வேண்டும் என்பதற்காக பசு தானம் கேட்க …அவன் இவரை எள்ளி நகையாட …கோபம் கொண்டு அர்ஜுனன் மூலம் பழி வாங்குகிறார் …(த்வேஷம்)…பின் ஷத்ரியன் போல் ஆயுதம் ஏந்துகிறார் …(தம் மகனுக்காக அவர் செய்த அதர்ம காரியம் உங்களுக்கு தெரிந்து இருக்கும்)வெளியிலும் யுத்த களத்திலும் பிறரிடம் வசை வாங்கி அவமானம் அடைந்தார்….
    மறுபுறம் குசேலரோ ….தன் பாலிய ஸ்னேஹிதன் கண்ணனிடம் எதுவும் யாசிக்காமல்…(கண்ணன் கேட்டும்) தன் தரித்திரம் தன்னோடு …என்ற மனோபாவத்தில் வெளியேற அவருக்கு என்ன சுபீக்ஷம் வழங்க பட்டது என அனைவருக்கும் தெரியும் ….இப்படியெல்லாம் கூறிவிட்டு கடைசியில் மஹாபெரியவா சொல்கிறார் …….
    “எனக்கென்னவோ பிராமணன் பிராமணனாக இருக்க வேண்டும் …அவன் தன் ஸ்வதர்மம் தவறினால் மிஞ்சுவது அவமானத்தை தவிர வேறு எதுவும் இல்லை …என முடிக்கிறார் ….
    இதிலிருந்தே தெரியவில்லையா ?????யார் காரணம் என்று ….
    பெரியவா எந்த இடத்திலும் நம்மை வேலைக்கு போகாதே …பொருளீட்டாதே …சௌகர்யமாய் வாழாதே என சொல்லவில்லை …”எதிலும் கணக்காய் இருக்கணும் என்றுதான் சொன்னார் ….அப்போ சொன்னார் …”காப்பி பட்டு புடவை வரதட்சிணை “வேண்டாம் என்று …
    இப்போ இருந்தால் சொல்வார் ….”செல்போன் …டிவி ….இவ்வளவு ஆடம்பரம் வேண்டாம் என்று…..ஸ்மார்ட் போன் …led …lcd ..TV .ஆடம்பர 2 வீலெர் …எப்படியாவது ஒரு 4 wheeler ….இதை விடுத்து …3 வேளையும்…பஞ்சபாத்திர உத்தரணியை எப்போ எடுக்கிறோமோ ….ஸ்ராத்த காரியங்களை பார்வணமாக செய்கிறோமோ (காலை 7 1/2 மணிக்கே அரிசி வாழைக்காய் தராமல்)..ஒரு சிறிய தொகையை வேத பாடசாலைக்காக தருகிறோமோ …முடிந்தபோது …1 லிட்டர் நல்ல என்னையும் …ஒரு முழ புது துண்டை முச்சந்தி பிள்ளையாருக்கு தருகிறோமோ …அப்போதான் இந்த துர்பிக்ஷம் தொலையும்….மற்ற வர்ணம் பற்றி கவலை வேண்டாம் …நம்மை நாம் பார்த்து கொண்டாலே போதும் …அதுவே மற்றவர்களுக்கும் ச்ரேயஸை தரும் ….
    இவை எல்லாமே மஹாபெரியவா சொன்னதுதான் ….

  10. Sorry, I am not able to answer for this quiz. I want to know that anybody can tell the sloka which mahaperiyava told that before leaving home we should tell the sloka.it starts aadhithyadhi navagraha devathaha ….. I will be grateful to those who send the full sloka. Actually it is a prayer we have to tell before leaving from home It ends prathi dhinam kurvanthu mangalam.

    • Pardon mistakes in transcribing:

      Aadityaadi Navagraaha Shubhakara Meshabdhyo rasaya
      Nakshatraani sayoga Kastha thithayo tatdevada Tatganaa
      Masaabdha rshavasta daiva divasa sandhyaa sthatha raatrayaha
      Sarve sthaavara jangama prathi Dinam kurvanthu vo mangalam

      N.b: Sri Jayarama Sarma (son of srivatsa Somadeva Sarma)
      Popularized this in his upanyaasams in the 1980s… so you can check
      That to get the Sanskrit version.

      We say this every time we go out of the house, to overcome the effects of bad time
      on starting some thing.

    • I don’t have it. Sorry

  11. //பெரியவா எந்த இடத்திலும் நம்மை வேலைக்கு போகாதே …பொருளீட்டாதே …சௌகர்யமாய் வாழாதே என சொல்லவில்லை …”எதிலும் கணக்காய் இருக்கணும் என்றுதான் சொன்னார் ….//

    Sir, The above statement that you mentioned above does not with what Periyava said in Deivathin Kural. I’m not debating whether it is practically possible or not but only stating let’s quote what Periyava stated as it is. Please see below. The chapter is in Vol 1 – Varna Dharmam -> Poruppali Yaar Parigaram Enna. Ram Ram

    சாஸ்திரங்கள் இவனுக்குப் பணத்தாசையே கூடாது; இவன் சொத்தே சேர்க்கக்கூடாது என்கின்றன. அதன் பிரகாரமே இவன் வாழ்க்கை நடத்தி, வேத சப்தத்தாலும் யக்ஞங்களாலும் லோக க்ஷேமத்தை ஏற்படுத்திக் கொண்டிருந்த வரையில், இவனிடம் மற்ற எல்லா ஜாதியாரும் குறைவில்லாத அன்பும் மரியாதையும் காட்டிவந்தனர். இவனையே உதாரணமாக, வழிகாட்டியாக, முன்மாதிரியாக (example, guide , model) வைத்துக் கொண்டார்கள்.

    பிராமணனின் தேகம் இந்திரிய சுகத்துக்காக ஏற்பட்டிருக்கிறதே அல்ல. அது லோக க்ஷேமார்த்தமாக வேதத்தை ரக்ஷிப்பதற்கு என்ன நியமங்களை அனுஷ்டானங்களைப் பின்பற்ற வேண்டுமோ அவற்றைச் செய்யவே ஏற்பட்டது. அதில் அதிகப்படியான எந்த போக்ய வஸ்துவும் சேர்க்கக் கூடாது என்பதுதான் அடிப்படை தர்மம். அந்த தர்மத்தை, அதில் உள்ள தியாகப் பண்பை விட்டுவிட்டு, நவீன உபகரணங்களால் சுலபத்தில் கிடைக்கிற சுகங்களுக்கு இவன் ஆசைப்பட்டது அடியோடு தவறுதான்.

  12. There is no doubt at all that according to Deivaththin Kural, it is Brahmins alone who are responsible for the collapse of Varnashrama Dharma. This I have conceded in the very beginning. There can be no two opinions about it all.

    This is also clearly stated by Tiruvalluvar in the Kural :

    மறப்பினும் ஒத்து கொளலாகும் பார்ப்பான்
    பிறப்பொழுக்கம் குன்றக் கெடும். 134

    The Vedas, even if forgotten, can be learned again. But if the Brahmin falls from his swadharma, the Brahmin falls from his place for ever. In fact, the expression ” கெடும்” can be interpreted to mean or imply that not only the Brahmin falls, but everything falls!

    Yet, there are places in the book where Periyava says that he represents a Mutt and bears the name of Acharya Sankara and so he has to be true to his teaching and cannot depart from it.

    However, as students of History, we have the canvas of the whole world before us. Islam and Christianity destroyed all the native cultures and religions wherever they went. The Muslims struggled in India for over 800 years but could not convert the whole land [ only one example in history] But they succeeded in converting and partition: today, Pakistan , India and Bangladesh [ ie the original India] contain 520 million Muslims- the largest chunk in the world. Yet they could not destroy the Varnashrama system. The English achieved this within 200 years in two ways: they introduced new economic arrangements based on money which destroyed the old mutually dependent order; they introduced a new educational system which cut off Hindus from the roots of their own religion and culture. These systems have been continued in India after independence even more vigorously!

    Arnold Toynbee who studied more than 25 civilizations said ( before 1961 ) that at the end of 20th century, 4 civilizations will struggle for existence or supremacy: the West, Islam, Far Eastern (China) and Hindu. This is what we see today actually happening. But India is losing as all the other three are exerting pressure on Hindus simultaneously in India itself! India is a secular country- not a Hindu country. Hindus have no country of their own in the world, with the fall of Nepal. Our secular govt. supports minorities and treats them with all privileges. They hesitate to protect even the cow, though that is in the Constitution! Hindus have no leader and do not speak with one voice.Those who speak do so for reformed Hinduism, each one interpreting it in his own way. No one stands for Varnashrama, though that is the backbone of Hinduism.

    Toynbee also said that the future of the world depended on Hinduism. He said that what began as the European century may well end as Hindu ! But for that Hindu should remain Hindu!

    There is appreciation of the basic Hindu spiritual ideals in learned quarters, but this is minuscle..In all the educational academies of the West, there is rampant vilification of Hinduism. And this is what our own Universities are following!

    Toynbee said that civilizations survived only if they met the challenges of the times. Otherwise they failed, declined, and disappeared or merely remained as fossils- as the Jews did. (This he wrote in 1934). It is for our religious leaders to think where we Hindus stand and what can be done.

    In the 7th volume of Deivaththin Kural, there is an extensive section on what the govt ought and ought not to do in respect of religion. In a long foreword to this section. Ra.Ganapathi traces how this section came to be- it had to wait 25 years to see the light of day! More than that, we realise with shock that all that Periyava said should not be done by politicians and legislators have actually been done ! [I refer to this only to show how difficult it is- if not impossible- for Hindus to be Hindus- leave alone for Brahmins to be ideal or real Brahmins as prescribed in the Shastras. I cite Toynbee only because he studied history not as the political history of nations but as the rise and fall of civilizations.]

    The Kali Age has assumed the form of secularism.This new civilisation is engulfing the whole world. In such circumstances, what can we say about Hinduism or Varnashrama Dharma in India which is not even a Hindu nation any more!

  13. One Clarification:

    Periyava’s advice to politicians was first given in 1947, but the politicians suppressed it. Then the magazine “Kalki” thought of publisheing it in its 1972 Dipawali issue and Periyava even revised it but at the last minute advised against its publication. it was finally published after another 25 years, in 1997!

    For the benefit of our friends here, I give the exact quotation from Toynbee:

    “It is already becoming clear that a chapter which had a Western beginning will have to have an Indian ending if it is not to end in self-destruction of the human race. At this supremely dangerous moment in human history , the only way of salvation is the ancient Hindu way. Here we have the attitude and spirit that can make it possible for the human race to grow together in to a single family.”
    “So now we turn to India. This spiritual gift, that makes a man human, is still alive in Indian souls. Go on giving the world Indian examples of it. Nothing else can do so much to help mankind to save itself from destruction.”

    This ideal is fully expressed in the Prayer song Periyava composed in 1966 to be sung in the UN: MAITREEM BHAJATA !

    Now friends , judge for yourselves to what extent we Hindus represent this ideal, half a century after this was written.

  14. Kudos to Shri Nanjappa for bringing out the various compelling reasons behind the decline of the Sanatana Dharma in the place of its origin. The moot point is that to revive the great tradition a concerted effort from all the spiritually inclined people is required, for which all the Matadipatis should come together to address the problems of the Hindu society and show a path to the earnest follower.

    There is no use in lamenting over the reason for the decline but rather, there should be a movement to put things in the right perspective so that the younger generation of today, who are fed by the visual and social media all the incorrect things about our past (history ) and the varied practices bordering on superstitious beliefs and therefore becoming disenchanted are weaned away from the untruths and half truths that they are fed with, to the path of reality and glory that is our Sanathana dharma. Our Maha Periyava has given us enough ammunition to start this movement, only there should be someone to lead.

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