TEXT 17
dhṛṣṭād dhārṣṭam abhūt kṣatraṁ
brahma-bhūyaṁ gataṁ kṣitau
nṛgasya vaṁśaḥ sumatir
bhūtajyotis tato vasuḥ
SYNONYMS
dhṛṣṭāt—from Dhṛṣṭa, another son of Manu; dhārṣṭam—a caste of the name Dhārṣṭa; abhūt—was produced; kṣatram—belonging to the kṣatriya group; brahma-bhūyam—the position of brāhmaṇas; gatam—had achieved; kṣitau—on the surface of the world; nṛgasya—of Nṛga, another son of Manu; vaṁśaḥ—the dynasty; sumatiḥ—of the name Sumati; bhūtajyotiḥ—of the name Bhūtajyoti; tataḥ—thereafter; vasuḥ—by the name Vasu.
TRANSLATION
From the son of Manu named Dhṛṣṭa came a kṣatriya caste called Dhārṣṭa, whose members achieved the position of brāhmaṇas in this world. Then, from the son of Manu named Nṛga came Sumati. From Sumati came Bhūtajyoti, and from Bhūtajyoti came Vasu.
PURPORT
Here it is said, kṣatraṁ brahma-bhūyaṁ gataṁ kṣitau: although the Dhārṣṭas belonged to the kṣatriya caste, they were able to convert themselves into brāhmaṇas. This gives clear evidence supporting the following statement by Nārada (Bhāg. 7.11.35):
yasya yal lakṣaṇaṁ proktaṁ
puṁso varṇābhivyañjakam
yad anyatrāpi dṛśyeta
tat tenaiva vinirdiśet
If the qualities of one group are found in the men of another, those men should be recognized by their qualities, by their symptoms, not by the caste of the family in which they were born. Birth is not at all important; it is one’s qualities that are stressed in all Vedic literature.

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