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Sacred Thread - an essential subject
One who cannot be brought nearer to a spiritual master cannot have a sacred thread, and thus he is indicated to be a śūdra. The sacred thread on the body of a brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya or vaiśya is a symbol of initiation by the spiritual master; it is worth nothing if worn merely to boast of high parentage. The duty of the spiritual master is to initiate a disciple with the sacred thread ceremony, and after this saṁskāra, or purificatory process, the spiritual master actually begins to teach the disciple about the Vedas. A person born a śūdra is not barred from such spiritual initiation, provided he is approved by the spiritual master, who is duly authorized to award a disciple the right to be a brāhmaṇa if he finds him perfectly qualified. In the Vāyu Purāṇa an ācārya is defined as one who knows the import of all Vedic literatures, abides by their rules and regulations, and teaches his disciples to act in the same way.
Srila Prabhupada's books, lectures, conversations and letters offer a comprehensive presentation of this essential subject as seen in the Vaniquotes Sacred Thread category. An introduction from his books is given below in the following 8 quotes.
Quotes from Srila Prabhupada's books
Sacred Thread - explore more within this category.
Vanipedia has now over 903 introductory articles compiled from Srila Prabhupada's books under the series titled Essential Subjects. All these articles can be seen in the Table of Content on the right side of this article and also here in this Umbrella Category. Browse through them to relish the breadth and depth of Srila Prabhupada's teachings - There is a subject for everyone.