The word varṇa is commonly translates as, “caste” --a translation that does not do justice to the context in which it was originally used in Vedic scriptures. While today we understand that this concept can be understood to be inherited by birth and used by one group to oppress another, there is a different point of view (to which we subscribe) for which we can find support in the śāstras. In this view, we all may contain or embody each of the 4 varṇas in the course of our lives and experiences, depending on what we are focusing on, our intentions, and spending our time on at any given point in our lives. There is also the idea, which we appreciate, that we are all born in with tamasic (baser) tendencies but, through our actions, we can evolve into a more sattvic (pure) mode of being. From this point of view, we do not inherit a high status—but that is the birthright for all of us, and attainable through self-purification.