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ness which such tales are too apt to produce; and lead their hearts to that pure morality, which is inseparable from the true worship of Him !










SOOBRAHMUNYU SHASTREE, a diligent observer of Brahmunical tenets, wishing to prove that those Brahmuns who do not study the Veds with their subordinate sciences, are degraded from the rank of Brahmunism, prepared and offered an Essay on that subject to the Brahmuns of the province of Bengal, who are generally deficient in those studies. In this, he has advanced three assertions: which, however, have no tendency to establish his position. He alleges 1st, that, “ to a

person not acquainted with the Veds, neither tem

porary heavenly enjoyments, nor eternal beatitude, “ can be allotted.” 2dly, that, “he only who has 66 studied the Veds is authorized to seek the knowledge “ of God;" and 3dly, that “men must perform with“out omission all the rites and duties prescribed in 66 the Veds and Smritis before acquiring a thorough

knowledge of God.” On these positions he attempts to establish, that the performance of the duties and rites prescribed by the Shastrus for each class according to their religious order, such as the studies of the Veds and the offering of sacrifices, &c., is absolutely necessary towards the acquisition of a knowledge of God. We consequently take upon ourselves to offer in our own defence the following remarks, in answer to those assertions.

We admit that it is proper in men to observe the dutes and rites prescribed by the Shastru for each class according to their religious order, in acquiring knowledge respecting God, such observance being conducive to that acquisition; an admission which is not inconsistent with the authorities of the Veds and other Shastrus. But we can by no means admit the necessity of observing those duties and rites as indispensable steps towards attaining divine knowledge, which the learned Shastree pronounces them to be; for the great Vyas, in his work of the Vedant Durshun, or the explanation of the spiritual parts of the Veds, justifies the attainment of the knowledge of God, even by those who never practise the prescribed duties and rites, as appears from the following two passages of Vyas in the

Durshun. “ Unturachapitoo tuddrishteh,”“ Upichu shmuryute.” The celebrated Shunkur Acharyu thus comments upon those two texts : As “ to the question, Whether such men as have not the 6 sacred fire, or are afflicted with poverty, who profess

no religious order whatsoever, and who do not belong “ to any cast, are authorized to seek divine knowledge “ or not? On a superficial view, it appears, that they

are not permitted to make such attainments, as the “ duties prescribed for each class are declared to lead “ to divine knowledge, and to those duties they are “ altogether strangers. Such doubt having arisen, the “ great Vyas thus decides : Even a person


pro“ fesses no religious order, is permitted to acquire a


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