|Madhya-līlā||Chapter 20: Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu Instructs Sanātana Gosvāmī in the Science of the Absolute Truth|
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrī Caitanya Caritāmṛta Madhya 20.59
viprād dvi-ṣaḍ-guṇa-yutād aravinda-nābha-
pādāravinda-vimukhāt śva-pacaḿ variṣṭham
prāṇaḿ punāti sa kulaḿ na tu bhūri-mānaḥ
viprāt — than a brāhmaṇa; dvi-ṣaṭ-guṇa-yutāt — who is qualified with twelve brahminical qualifications; aravinda-nābha — of Lord Viṣṇu, who has a lotuslike navel; pāda-aravinda — unto the lotus feet; vimukhāt — than a person bereft of devotion; śva-pacam — a caṇḍāla, or a person accustomed to eating dogs; variṣṭham — more glorified; manye — I think; tat-arpita — dedicated unto Him; manaḥ — mind; vacana — words; īhita — activities; artha — wealth; prāṇam — life; punāti — purifies; saḥ — he; kulam — his family; na tu — but not; bhūri-mānaḥ — a brāhmaṇa proud of possessing such qualities.
"'One may be born in a brāhmaṇa family and have all twelve brahminical qualities, but if he is not devoted to the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa, who has a navel shaped like a lotus, he is not as good as a caṇḍāla who has dedicated his mind, words, activities, wealth and life to the service of the Lord. Simply to take birth in a brāhmaṇa family or to have brahminical qualities is not sufficient. One must become a pure devotee of the Lord. If a śva-paca or caṇḍāla is a devotee, he delivers not only himself but his whole family, whereas a brāhmaṇa who is not a devotee but simply has brahminical qualifications cannot even purify himself, what to speak of his family.'"
This verse is spoken by Prahlāda Mahārāja in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.9.10). A brāhmaṇa is supposed to be qualified with twelve qualities. As stated in the Mahābhārata:
dharmaś ca satyaḿ ca damas tapaś ca
amātsaryaḿ hrīs titikṣānasūyā
yajñaś ca dānaḿ ca dhṛtiḥ śrutaḿ ca
vratāni vai dvādaśa brāhmaṇasya
"A brāhmaṇa must be perfectly religious. He must be truthful, and he must be able to control his senses. He must execute severe austerities, and he must be detached, humble and tolerant. He must not envy anyone, and he must be expert in performing sacrifices and giving whatever he has in charity. He must be fixed in devotional service and expert in the knowledge of the Vedas. These are the twelve qualifications for a brāhmaṇa."
The Bhagavad-gītā (18.42) describes the brahminical qualities in this way:
śamo damas tapaḥ śaucam kṣāntir ārjavam eva ca
jñānaḿ vijñānam āstikyaḿ brahma-karma svabhāva-jam
"Peacefulness, self-control, austerity, purity, tolerance, honesty, knowledge, wisdom and religiousness — these are the natural qualities by which the brāhmaṇas work."
In the Muktāphala-ṭīkā, it is said:
śamo damas tapaḥ śaucaḿ kṣānty-ārjava-viraktayaḥ
jñāna-vijñāna-santoṣāḥ satyāstikye dvi-ṣaḍ guṇāḥ
"Mental equilibrium, sense control, austerity, cleanliness, tolerance, simplicity, detachment, theoretical and practical knowledge, satisfaction, truthfulness and firm faith in the Vedas are the twelve qualities of a brāhmaṇa."
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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness