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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Bhaktivedanta Prabhupada > In Search of the Ultimate Goal of Life > In Search of the Ultimata Goal of Life > Real Varea and Acrama

Real Varna and Ashrama


The varnashrama system, originated by the Personality of Godhead, is spiritually significant because when all the varnas and ashramas cooperate, society facilitates deliverance from the clutches of maya or illusion. This is done by all varnas and ashramas carrying out the plan of Godhead. The brahmana is considered the mouth of the virat-purusha (the cosmophysical feature of the Personality of Godhead). The kshatriyas are the arms, the vaishyas are the stomach, and the shudras are the legs. The functioning of the mouth is recognized by sound. Therefore, the function of the brahmanas or sannyasis is to transmit the transcendental sound of the Vedas so that every human being can know what is what in relation to the Supreme. By transmission of transcendental sound, human beings will know their actual identities as superior in nature to matter. Thus they will know their eternal relationship with Godhead. Knowing this, they will be engaged in carrying out the plan of Godhead, instead of serving the deluding energy with a false notion of lording it over her. Carrying out the plan of Godhead will help the conditioned soul get out of the clutches of the deluding energy and enter into the kingdom of God for an eternal life of bliss and knowledge.

Every living being is struggling in this material world for eternal life, knowledge, and bliss, but is bewildered by the deluding energy. The plan of Godhead is so designed that in the human form of life one can get out of the entanglement of material existence. Because the kshatriyas are the arms of the virat-purusha, it is their duty to protect the whole body and cooperate with the mouth, stomach, and legs. The system of varnashrama is a spiritual plan of cooperation for mutual benefit, and therefore it is essential that it be maintained in its original dignity. As it stands now, it is perverted and diseased.

The so-called brahmanas have become detached from the body of the virat-purusha because they do not transmit the transcendental sounds of the Vedas. A head that is cut off from the body certainly cannot produce any sound. Such a dead head, although called a brahmana, has no real value as a head. Similarly, those brahmanas who simply claim to be so by a custom of hereditary right also have no value as brahmanas, because they have no power to function as the mouth of Godhead. In the same manner, whoever fails to carry out the plan of Godhead as part and parcel of the virat-purusha must be considered fallen and detached from his position. Such separated parts are of no value as mouths, arms, stomachs, or legs.