Questions tagged [dharma]

Dharma (Sanskrit: धर्म ) is a key concept with multiple meanings in the Indian religions Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism.

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Was Bhishma really not aware about the difference between Dharma and tradition?

In Star Plus Mahabharat, season 3 episode 2, when Karna was a teenager, he wins a little competition which involved bow and arrow. Karna won, but Bhishma only praised his chariot driver skills, and ...
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1answer
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Do Vedas support the practice of Satī?

Are there any instances of Satī in the Vedas? Do Vedas support this practice? Some people argue RV 10.18.8 is evidence against Satī. What is the context of this hymn/verse? HYMN XVIII. Various ...
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Does scripture say that widows are inauspicious?

Among other things, I understand that a widow is not allowed to give her son/daughter away in marriage, only a husband-wife couple can do so.
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Can I trim / shave my own head being a Brahmin?

Can I trim my own head hair being a Brahmin? Is this against the Hindu Dharma? Thanks
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Is stopping an inter-caste between a Brahmin woman and a Shudra man – dharma or adharma?

Background: Although Hinduism does not recommend inter-caste marriages, in modern times, such marriages are at a high level. In my life I heard of a woman born into a Brahmin family, she loved & ...
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888 views

What to do when scriptures go against conscience?

TL;DR WHAT TO DO WHEN SCRIPTURES GO AGAINST CONSCIENCE? What to do when Parshara Smriti go against my conscience? How can I treat a chandala (I do not even know what that means, except that it is a ...
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2answers
168 views

Are Dharma sutras different from Dharma Shastra?

When one searches for Dharma Shastra, books like manu smriti, and various other smriti comes, but when one searches for dharma sutras, baudhayana sutras and the likes come. What is the difference ...
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How can an unmarried person repay their debt to parents and ancestors?

How can a person not interested in marriage (because they think it's a waste of time and money, also causes one to lose their peace of mind) repay their debt to parents and ancestors? Does adopting a ...
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How do we reconcile Rama vs. Ravana and Krishna/Arjuna vs. Karna scenarios?

Comparing the two scenarios: Secnario 1: Rama has destroyed all of Ravana's weapons, chariot etc..and has him completely unarmed. However Rama sends him back to come the next day stating that it is ...
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1answer
150 views

How Does Hindu Dharma Differ from Other Religions? [closed]

There are so many religions and every religion believes that there is some God. There are good people who want to do good Karma. Why is the need for so many religions and why isn’t there only one ...
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What is the difference between dharma and religion?

Hinduism is called "Dharma" unlike Christianity or Islam, which are called "religions". My question is: What is the difference between Dharma and Religion?
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What are the duties of Dvija-Bandhus?

According to the book "Hindu Dharma" by Sri Sri Chandrashekarendra Saraswati: If the Gayatri has not been chanted for three generations in the family of a Brahmin, its members lose caste (they ...
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What is the significance of “ Vratas” ( व्रत ) In Hinduism?

What is the significance of "Vratas (व्रत )" described in Hinduism. e.g. "Haritalika (हरितालिका)" , "Rushi Panchami (ऋषि पंचमी) etc. Are there any scriptures pointing towards importance of "vratas" ...
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According to Sri Vaishnavism, whenever there is a conflict between prapanna duties and non-prapanna duties, which takes precedence?

According to Sri Vaishnavism, whenever there is a conflict between duties enjoined for prapannas and duties enjoined for ashramas or varnas, which takes precedence? For example, suppose there is a ...
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Is it a sin to have sex with promiscuous, unmarried women?

According to Hindu scriptures, it is a sin for a man to have sex with most women who aren't his wives. An ancient acharya says that it is permissible (not sinful) to have sex with your wife(s) and ...
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Why did Drona and Kripa, who were Brahmanas, fight in the Mahabharata war? [duplicate]

Dronacharya and Kripacharya were powerful warriors who fought in the Mahabharata war. However, they were Brahmanas and not Kshatriyas. Why did they decide to fight? Apastamba says: A Brāhmaṇa ...
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What is good karma? What is bad karma? Who defines it?

Who defines 'good' or 'bad' karma - like this is bad and this is good? It depends on time or generation? Is there any book, Veda or any other holy book, where it's defined?
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What is difference between Neeti and Dharma

Vidura was known as Neetijnya in english one who has knowledge of Neeti. Neeti word Derives from the word Naitikta in sanskrit, which in english is similar to Morality(proof). Since he was the wise ...
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When were women allowed to have multiple husbands without sin?

When were women allowed to have multiple husbands without sin? According to this answer, the Rishis permitted this practice at one point in history: King Pandu well-acquainted with all rules of ...
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Where is the injunction to do Sandhyavandanam found in the Vedas?

I know the injunction for Dvijas to do Sandhyavandanam is found in the Manusmriti, but where is this injunction found in the Vedas? The Gayatri mantra is found in the Vedas, but where is the ...
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Is killing of a scorpion or snake not himsa according to the scriptures?

In Srimad-Bhagavatam (7.9.14), we get modeta sādhur api vṛścika-sarpa-hatyā (..Even saintly persons take pleasure in the killing of a scorpion or a snake..) Gita on the other hand clearly ...
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Is relationship between father and son eternal?

Even after the death, only shrAdha ceremony will help the soul to reach heaven. The soul will mostly reincarnate in same blood line so can we conclude the relationship between father and son is ...
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992 views

What is dharma for Mlecchas according to Hinduism?

Dharma is eternal and fixed. Each varna in Hinduism has its own dharma, which is defined by the Vedas. What is the dharma for Mlecchas?
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Why did Karna flee from battle with Chitrasena (Gandharvas)?

First of all, I am a great admirer of Karna and can prove that he is the only person in Mahabharata epic to follow dharma in his entire life but the only question I have is why did he ran from the ...
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Does Dharma reduces from one mahayuga to another mahayuga? [duplicate]

In each mahayuga there a four yugas. It is well known that dharma reduces from Krita yuga to Kali yuga. Is there any such change in Dharma from one mahayuga to its next mahayuga?
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Are there instances in Hinduism where Dharma is cited to both support and oppose an act?

For example - the killing of Duryodhana is condemned by Baladeva and celestial beings showered flowers on the fatally wounded Duryodhana when he chastised Krishna for his acts of treachery throughout ...
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Is getting promotion using influence dharma or adharma?

In offices, people may often resort to lobbying and using influence to get a promotion in their jobs. Will this practice be considered as adharma or dharma?
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1answer
160 views

On chastity of gods [closed]

Tilottama was born to kill the twin brothers Sunda-Upasunda and when Shiva first sees her, he's captivated by her beauty and develops many heads on each side so he can keep looking at her. Why do ...
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714 views

How is “Patriotism” seen from the Hindu Dharma perspective?

Are there any scriptures (Dharma Shastra-s) or Hindu saints who have talked about patriotism? Related: This post discusses specific to Kshatriya class, Martyr concept in Hinduism
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Why did the Devas let Brihaspati be their guru even though he had sex with his brothers' wives?

Being a guru, Brihaspati had sex with his younger brother's wife and yet why did the devas let him be their guru? This is is mentioned in Devi Bhagavata Purana here. Did Brihaspati suffer any ...
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Do Kshatriyas have to abide by the Dharmic rules of engagement when fighting enemies who do not abide by the same rules of engagement in battle?

Kshatriya dharma has certain rules of engagement in battle. For example: Manu 7.90 - While fighting his enemies in battle, he shall hot strike with concealed weapons; nor with arrows that are ...
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On use of contraceptive methods and enjoying sex-life without being kandarpa

Kandarpa is a person who only uses his sexual power to beget good children from his dharmapatni or wife. So for being a kandarpa, a person can only have sexual contact with his wife for having ...
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1answer
108 views

Is Dharma unreal in Vedanta?

This source (page 214 (5)), which is also cited in the Wikipedia page for Dharma, says : In the Yoga system the dharma is real; in the Vedanta it is unreal (vivarta). What does this mean in the ...
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Does the Mahabharata give reasons why Duryodhana went to heaven?

http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m10/m10009.htm Ashwatthama is reporting his night-slaughter to the dying Duryodhana: Going from this world, O monarch, and meeting with those mighty car-warriors (...
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Why did Ramakrishna marry Sarada Devi when he had no intention of leading a married life?

The Wikipedia article on Ramakrishna Paramahansa says: By the time his bride joined him, Ramakrishna had already embraced the monastic life of a sannyasi; as a result, the marriage was never ...
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Who committed more acts of Adharma in the Mahabharata war? [closed]

The killing of Abhimanyu was purely Dharmic - but even accepting Krishna's word for it as he addressed the defeated Duryodhana - http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m09/m09061.htm "'Vasudeva said, "...
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Why is the death of Abhimanyu considered unfair?

After reading the death of Abhimanyu by BORI and KMG, I asked myself since then, why is his death considered so unjust? Was he attacked in a group? Yes, but the attack only broke his bow, his horses, ...
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Is it the dharma of Rakshasas to be evil?

I remember Ravana being berated for being adharmic (fighting while rendering himself invisible, if i recall right) and he says thats the way Rakshasas behave. Is Rakshasa Dharma described anywhere?
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Does the shloka 'ahiṃsā paramo dharma' or excerpt appear in Mahabharata?

Ahimsa paramo dharma, is it taken from Mahabharata? Many sources over internet say so and claim that it is a half-truth and the remaining half is Himsa dharma tadaivacha. Is it true? Who is the ...
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How exactly did the killing of Abhimanyu violate the agreed-upon rules of war?

Many on one - Abhimanyu was a Maharathi or something - I believe they can be attacked by many at the same time. He fought till the end and never surrendered. The Kauravas didn't come looking for him - ...
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560 views

Is the Manusmriti written to favor a particular class of the society?

Critics say the Manusmriti is pro-Brahmin, and written by casteist Brahmins by favoring particular section of society and thereby oppressing Shudras, women, and other lower castes. Is this argument ...
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1answer
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Which came first, dharma śāstras and smṛtis or the people that followed them?

This is a chicken-and-egg problem. Did the dharma śāstras and smṛtis come first and then people started following them or people already had some unwritten rules and they were then codified into ...
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Did Sudras have Varnashrama Dharma as opposed to Varna Dharma only?

I guess they only had to follow Grihastha ashrama when they attained the appropriate age, learning and renunciation being denied to them.
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How can one save Sanatana Dharma?

It is said on multiple occasions that we need to protect our sanskriti, our dharma, etc. But is there any reference in our shastras on what should we do to save dharma?
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Which scriptures deal with rules for widows?

Widows are not allowed to wear colour sarees and are not allowed to participate in functions, they are also prohibited from touching certain plants. What is the exact reason behind this and can ...
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230 views

Does Narada Maharishi permit having sex with prostitutes and promiscuous girls? Need commentary

Note, that this question is NOT a duplicate of this, or this, or even this. This verse from the Narada Smriti permits sex with promiscuous women, prostitutes, and unmarried women freely: 12.78 - ...
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Does Hinduism permit having sex with female slaves? [duplicate]

This verse from the Narada Dharma Shastra apparently permits sexual intercourse with promiscuous women, prostitutes, and female slaves: Nārada (12.78).—‘Intercourse is permitted with a wanton woman ...
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Do scriptures allow Hindus to marry foreigners?

Do scriptures allow Hindus to marry foreigners, or non-Hindus of other races? Inter-caste marriage has its restrictions, but what about interracial marriages?
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What are the Prajapatya, Chandrayana, and Krcchra penances?

The Dharmashastras prescribe various penances such as the Prajapatya, Chandrayana, and Krccha penances. For example, here is a verse from the Manusmriti: On having had intercourse with one’s ...
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To save themselves from the Lākṣāgṛha (house of lac), did Pāṇḍavas kill an innocent niṣāda woman and her five children?

In this YouTube video (1988 TV series Mahabharat, Episode 31 - Escape from Lakshagraha) it is shown that a niṣāda woman and her five children are urged by Purocana, the builder of the infamous ...