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Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (2nd Bin)
I think it best to answer the most important point in the post first before I go sequentially.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Although birth may have an unusually strong correlation with the varNa of a person. And therefore, I respectfully disagree with any acharyas/sages if they insist that <b>only jAti</b> should be the basis of varNa.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
The word ONLY is superfluous here as it has never been said before in the discussion that Jati is the ONLY criteria for Varna. If it were so, then Yudhisthira's answers to the Yaksha, or Vajrasuchika Upanishad will be meaningless. If Jati ALONE was to be a criteria, then Sanathana Dharma would not make sense as it leaves no scope for improvement. Thus I would like that you take the 'only' component out of the picture - following which we are on the same page. In fact, I too would vehemently (not humbly) disagree with anyone who says jati alone decides a varna. I hope I have made myself clear as to birth being *a* component and not *the* component in deciding varna.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Yes, I had gargI and maitereyI from women side and raikva and jAnashruti from shUdras in mind. Also the story of satyakAma jAbAli whose mother was a maid servant and who didn't know who was satyakAma's father. But satyakAma was accepted as a brahmana.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sri Shankaracharya's thoughts on Janasruthi, and Satyakama Jaapala not being Shudra by birth is made clear in his commentary of apasudradhikaranam.

http://www.swami-krishnananda.org/bs_1/1-3-09.html

Sugasya tadanadarasravanat tadadravanat suchyate hi I.3.34 (97)

<i>The Purvapakshin says: The Sudras also have got bodies and desires. Hence they are also entitled. Raikva refers to Janasruti who wishes to learn from him by the name of Sudra. "Fie, necklace and carriage be thine, O Sudra, together with the cows" Chh. Up. IV-2 & 3. But when he appears a second time, Raikva accepts his presents and teaches him. Smriti speaks of Vidura and others who were born from Sudra mothers as possessing highest knowledge. Therefore the Sudra has a claim to Brahma Vidya or knowledge of Brahman.

This Sutra refutes the view and denies the right to the study of the Vedas for Sudra. The word 'Sudra' does not denote a Sudra by birth which is its conventional meaning, <b>because Janasruti was a Kshatriya king.</b> Here we will have to take the etymological meaning of the word which is, "He rushed into grief <b>(Sukam abhi dudrava)</b> or as "grief rushed on him" or as "he in his grief rushed to Raikva". The following Sutra also intimates that he was a Kshatriya.</i>


Tadabhavanirdharane cha pravritteh I.3.37 (100)

<i>The same discussion on the Sudras' right is continued.

Gautama, having ascertained Jabala not to be a Sudra from his speaking the truth proceeded to initiate and instruct him. "None who is not a Brahmana would thus speak out. Go and fetch fuel, friend, I shall initiate you. You have not swerved from the truth" Chh. Up. IV-4-5.

This scriptural text furnishes an inferential sign of the Sudras not being capable of initiation.</i>

In the second case however, it does not mention the birth component as it is a matter of faith (or doubt.) This example supports your point that the GUNA component over rides the janma component.

I will conclude further posts on this particular subject here. There are no more questions that arise in my mind pertaining to Varna.
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Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (2nd Bin) - by Guest - 10-22-2004, 01:33 AM
Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (2nd Bin) - by Guest - 10-22-2004, 01:36 AM
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