It would be great if someone could post the reference to this verse from the Bhagavat Gita as I couldn't find it when searched on Google.

This is how the verse comes:

Birth is not the cause, my friend; it is virtues which are the cause of auspiciousness. Even a candala observing the vow is considered a brahmana by the gods.

Note: I heard that the above verse is from Bhagavat Gita from the following links: Link to the video: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Ui0z6ceY2H8 Screenshot to the verse in the YouTube video

Other articles: http://www.hinduwisdom.info/Caste_System6.htm! https://archive.org/stream/TributeToHinduismTheCasteSystem/Tribute%20to%20Hinduism-The%20Caste%20System_djvu.txt

  • 1
    It is not there in BG, to the best of my knowledge.
    – user16581
    Jan 2, 2020 at 10:48

3 Answers 3


That verse doesn't belong to the Bhagavad-gītā but is taken from the Aśvamedha Parva of the Southern Recension of the Mahābhārata (Kumbakonam Edition):

Ashvamedhikaparva - adhyAya 116

14.116. adhyAyaH 116

Mahabharata - Ashvamedhika Parva - Chapter Topics

kR^iShNena yudhiShThiraMprati bhakagavadbhaktisaushIlyAdyabhAve brAhmaNAnAmapi agnihotrasvAdhyAyAdhyayanAdisatkarmaNAmapi vaiphalyasya shUdrANAmapi bhaktyAdimatAM svochitakiMchitkarmaNAmapi sAphalyasya cha kathanam.. 1 ..

Mahabharata - Ashvamedhika Parva - Chapter Text

yudhiShThira uvAcha.

kIdR^ishA brAhmaNAH puNyA bhAvashuddhAH sureshvara.
yatkarma saphalaM neti kathayasya mamAnagha.. 14-116-1

bhagavAnuvAcha. 14-116-2x

shR^iNu pANDava tatsarvaM brAhmaNAnAM yathAkramam.
saphalaM niShphalaM chaiva teShAM karma bravImi te.. 14-116-2

tridaNDadhAraNaM maunaM jaTAdhAraNamuNDanam.
valkalAjinasaMvAso vratacharyA.abhiShechanam.. 14-116-3

agnihotraM gR^ihe vAsaH svAdhyAyaM dArasatkriyA.
sarvANyetAni vai mithyA yadi bhAvo na nirmalaH.. 14-116-4

agnihotraM vR^ithA rAjanvR^ithA vedAstathaiva cha.
shIlena devAstuShyanti shrutayastatra kAraNam.. 14-116-5

kShAntaH dAntaM jitakrodhaM jitAtmAnaM jitendriyam.
tamagryaM brAhmaNaM manye sheShAH shUdrA iti smR^itAH.. 14-116-6

upavAsaratAndAntAMstAdevA brAhmaNAnviduH.. 14-116-7

na jAtyA pujIto rAjanguNAH kalyANakAraNAH.
chaNDAlamapi vR^ittasthaM taM devA brAhmaNaM viduH.. 14-116-8

manashshauchaM karmashauchaM kulashauchaM cha bhArata.
sharIrashauchaM vAkChauchaM shauchaM pa~nchavidhaM smR^itam.. 14-116-9

pa~nchasveteShu shaucheShu hR^idiM shauchaM vishiShyate.
hR^idayasya cha shauchena svargaM gachChanti mAnavAH.. 14-116-10


As the editors of the Critical Edition of the Mahābhārata explain, the above dialogue between Yudhiṣṭhira and Kṛṣṇa is a late addition to the Mahābhārata and is only present in the Southern Recension manuscripts:

The Vaiṣṇavadharmaśāstra Interpolation

The Aśvamedhikaparvan has the distinction of having a very big interpolation or addition (constituting about 1700 ślokas), which is shown by us as Appendix.

The Southern Recension MSS contain this portion which is omitted in all MSS representing the Northern Recension. Sāyaṇa in his Parāśaramādhavīya (B S S Vol I) and Vādirāja, the author of the Lakṣaṇālaṅkāra, have quoted from this section as P P S Sastri has pointed out.

It is purely sectarian (Vaiṣṇavite) work, very conveniently tacked on to the Aśvamedhikaparvan at the end. At the conclusion of the Aśvamedha sacrifice, Yudhiṣṭhira requests Kṛṣṇa to describe the Vaiṣṇavadharma in all its aspects, ritualistic, philosophical, etc. Gods and Brahmarṣis also, desirous of listening to this Dharma saṃvāda, come there. Kṛṣṇa discourses on various matters, such as —

  1. The Varṇāśramadharmas
  2. The nature of the three fold Dāna
  3. Praise of Brāhmaṇas and devotees of the Lord
  4. Yama loka
  5. The fruits of Toyānnadāna, Bhūdāna, Kanyā dāna, Godāna, etc
  6. The five Mahāyajñas, Pitṛtarpaṇa, etc
  7. Kapilādāna
  8. Āpatddharma etc

There is not much of philosophy here, the section being intended for the glorification of Vaiṣṇavadharma, and devotion to the Bhagavat. Attention is drawn even to trivial matters, like how one should take a bath or put on his clothes. On the whole, this section can have an appeal only to those who are followers of the Bhāgavata-dharma.

  • 1
    This is excellent catch.
    – user16581
    Jan 3, 2020 at 15:18
  • 1
    @Thecrowandthecoconut: Agreed. Really an excellent catch. As commented earlier also, (sv. - the author of the post) has vast knowledge. Jan 3, 2020 at 15:32

Chapter 5: Karma-yoga-18 skoka

vidya-vinaya-sampanne brahmane gavi hastini suni caiva sva-pake ca panditah sama-darsinah


The humble sage, by virtue of true knowledge, sees with equal vision a learned and gentle brahmana, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste] .

  • 3
    Thank you for your beautiful answer. But this verse doesn't match with with the one I posted. Please clarify on that part too in your answer. Thank you. 😊
    – Peaceman
    Jan 2, 2020 at 9:28
  • @Peaceman Such verse does not exist in BG, afaik.
    – user16581
    Jan 2, 2020 at 10:47
  • @Thecrowandthecoconut: Perhaps, the OP wants to make every member of this site read BG completely and thoroughly. That is why this type of question was posted. Jan 2, 2020 at 14:28
  • 1
    The OP wants to know exact location of a verse which is said to have in Bhagavad Gita. It's written in many sites that it's said by Krishna. But this verse is different. Jan 2, 2020 at 15:15
  • @Sarvabhouma: Had it been stated by Sri Krishna , the other sites might have referred to same in their sites. Jan 2, 2020 at 15:16

The verse you are seeking is this one:

Bg. 18.41 ब्राह्मणक्षत्रियविशां श‍ूद्राणां च परन्तप । कर्माणि प्रविभक्तानि स्वभावप्रभवैर्गुणै: ॥ ४१ ॥


Brāhmaṇas, kṣatriyas, vaiśyas and śūdras are distinguished by the qualities born of their own natures in accordance with the material modes, O chastiser of the enemy.

Here gunah means material modes.

prabhavaiḥ — born of; guṇaiḥ — by the modes of material nature

In the scriptures of Hinduism there is NO sanction of a birth-based caste system. Instead there is a sanction of merit-based social stratification system called Varna-ashrma-dharma(this later became the caste-system)

  • 1
    Where are the words of Sri Krishna - Even a candala observing the vow is considered a brahmana by the gods - in this sloka, which are quoted by OP? Jan 3, 2020 at 1:51

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