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I'm writing a paper about Rajput self-sacrifice in ancient battles. I'm looking into the motivation for sacrifice and for fighting in general and I have this question:

It is said that a Rajput's dharma is to sacrifice themselves in battle.

  1. Is this correct? What reliable source is there for this?

  2. Sacrificing myself is basically dying. How can my dharma be to die in battle? Isn't it a little dependent on others? I need my enemy to kill me for me to die. I thought dharma was traditionally about decision and right ways. How does relying on another for fulfillment work here?

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    Dying in battle is certainly a meritorious thing for a Kshatriya, something that can send them to Devaloka, but I haven't heard that it's a Kshatriya's Dharma to die in battle. It's not like it's bad if you win all the battles you fight. May 7 '15 at 19:24
  • so where did you read that Rajput's dharma is to sacrifice themselves in battle?
    – Sai
    May 7 '15 at 20:44
  • Lindsay Harlan talks about it in 'The Goddesses' Henchman'
    – Navot
    May 7 '15 at 20:55
  • dharma depends on context on time you live.. according to madvacharya, which ever activity leads to god is dharama others all are doesnt matter.. For your case one need not necessary die in battle.. one can be able administrator, mla or mp to help people achieve the goal..
    – Prasanna R
    Jan 6 at 16:45
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In bhagwadgita, it is said that the dharma of a kshatriya where rajputs are said to have descended from is to fight in battle to protect dharma itself (BG 2.31). Dharma here includes all vedic knowledge, cultures, customs & beliefs of the hindu people and the wider umbrella called Sanatana Dharma, it is the duty of a kshatriya just like any varna group to fulfill their dharma through their karma.

In Bhagwadgita, Krishna says to Arjuna, your dharma is to hight this battle regardless of fearing for the result. If you win this battle, you will be successful establishing justice, truth and dharma to this land. If you die, you will attain to higher dimensions as you died fulfilling your duty. (BG 2.37)

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