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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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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 is Dharma according to the Bhagavad Gita?

What is Dharma according to the Bhagavad Gita? Are hymns and worship of God compulsory in the Bhagavad Gita ?
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Should Krishna be considered good or bad?

I have read the Mahabharata and it seems that unrighteous behaviour or adharma is followed by Krishna in many places, but most people do not care about Krishna's character/behaviour and righteousness, ...
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How do the scriptures describe an ideal Sanyasi?

This page describes some of the Dharmas that a "Sanyasi" has to follow. For example, a Sanyasi: Should always have a dhanda (bamboo staff) and kamandulu (used for abulations made of wood). If ...
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What is the definition of sin according to Hinduism?

What is a definition of a sin? What are the criteria by which an act becomes sinful?
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Why did Sri Rama banish Lady Sita when he was a witness of her fire-test himself?

Sri Rama was a great and just king of Ayodhya. There were some rumors reported by his subjects against the purity of Lady Sita. So, as per the Raja Dharma, Rama had to banish Sita. But was it against ...
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What exactly is a leela (लीला)? Is there a scriptural definition of leela (लीला)?

When people cannot logically explain certain actions of Gods, their incarnations, Saints, Ṛṣis etc., they often use the term leela which is sometimes spelled as līlā and lIlA. I think the word ...
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Is it wise to kill an insect just because it is bothering you?

Is it wise to kill an insect just because it is wandering around your apartment or just because it is bothering you? I've seen people killing small insects just because it is wandering/jumping/hiding ...
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In Hinduism, what exactly is a lie? And is lying adharma?

I would like to know what is considered a lie in Hinduism? Sometimes we speak good but we speak the same thing in a different way which appears as a lie to the listener but it's not really a lie. In ...
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What are the four legs of Dharma?

It is said that Dharma has four legs (pillars) and it is depicted in the form of vrushabham (nandi). What are those four legs? As far as I know, cow's four legs are also seen as four legs of Dharma. ...
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What is Dharma according to Veda or Upanishad?

I know that the question asked before What is dharma? but the question and answer shows what Dharma is according to Bhagavad Gita. I am interested in the explanation of Dharma according to shruti. So,...
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Is it adharma to give Dana without considering what we are giving and to whom we are giving?

Dana is a dharma action followed in every yuga as it prevents selfishness, ignorance and helps other beings to live very peacefully. But, the Dana which helps society can also bring problems to it if ...
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What are different types of sins?

According to Sanatana Dharma, what are the types of sins? What types of sins can be washed and how and in what cases it is not considered as sin even if people commit one?
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Why did Lord Krishna kidnap Rukmini to get married?

As per the Vedas, getting married to a girl after kidnapping is considered devil or daemon (दानव dānava) Vivaha (marriage) which isn't righteous (धर्मानुकूलन dharmānukūlana). And Lord Krishna ...
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How can we make sure it's impossible for us to commit any sin or violence?

Is there a way to make committing violence impossible? Can someone do something so that it will be impossible (or at least very difficult) for him to commit any violence in any corner of the world?
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Kshatriyas and alcohol consumption

What are the alcoholic beverages suitable for consumption by a Kshatriya? What about other three varnas? Are they allowed to consume alcohol?
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Drona and his dharma

In Mahabharata, we know that Drona was a Brahmin. He would refuse to teach any Shudra student citing that it is not their Dharma to become a warrior. In the same vein, was it not wrong on Drona's ...
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Did Swami Vivekananda eat fish and meat before he turned a sannyasi? Did he continue eating fish and meat after?

Did Swami Vivekananda eat fish and meat before he turned a sannyasi? Did he continue eating fish and meat after? What were his views on consumption of vegetarian or non-vegetarian food? PS. Please ...
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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 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 shave hair after parents die?

Recently, a cousin of mine lost his father. Before conducting a ritual for the well being of his father's soul, he had to shave all his hair except for a bit at the back (choti). Why did he have to do ...
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Punishing a couple to stop intercaste marriage is of which Karma(Good Or Bad)?

Inter-caste marriage is not appreciated by our scriptures and also in practical life and Stopping a inter - caste marriage is dharma and is of good karma. Couples get killed or beated by their ...
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Why did god create us even though he knew that we will partake in adharma?

God knows that humans will partake in adharma. So why did he create us?
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Why didn't Lord Ram try to prove Mother Sita's Purity but rather chose to exile her?

Lord Ram exiled Mother Sita to follow his Raja Dharma as his peoples doubted Mother Sita's Purity. Many of the people other than Lord Ram and Lakshmana witnessed Mother Sita's Agni Pariksha King ...
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What do scriptures say about using swear or abusive words for cursing people?

I am asking this question from a modern perspective. Do we consider the use of abusive words as "Vaani Hinsa"? Is there any punishment for this and also does it affect our deeds (karma)? And also ...
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Why did Rāma kill Śambūka? And is Rāma justified in killing him without a second chance?

In Uttara-kāṇḍa of Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa, we see Vālmīki narrate the story of Śambūka. Questions: Why did Rāma kill Śambūka? Is it because Śambūka was a śūdra or is it because he was doing tapasya for ...
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How do we decide what is dharma and adharma?

In real life there are circumstances where we are in dwanda (indecisive state of mind) and we cannot make a clear decision on what is dharma and what is adharma. For example: When someone with the ...
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Dharmic role of wife in marriage

In the Ramanandsagar TV serial Ramayana, a sage (Vashistha or Viswamitra?) defines duties of a wife i.e., She should provide prerana, chetana and utsaaham (roughly: inducing, motivation and ...
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How can Draupadi be a pathivrata (dutiful wife) while being married to 5 men?

What are the qualities and requirements needed to be a pathivrata? Draupadi is considered to be one of the Panchkannyas, and a great pathivrata too. This link says why Draupadi married 5 persons (the ...
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Why did Karna choose not to fight on the side of the Dharma?

I have not 'read' the Mahabharata yet, but the Hindi poem Rashmirathi by Ramdhari Singh Dinkar narrates how Shri Krishna tried to convince Karna to get on the side of the Pandavas. Yet, Karna chose to ...
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Where does Vyasa say this shlokha in the Mahabharata?

In which parva and in what context does Vyasa say the following shlokha in the Mahabharata? You can listen to it here: https://clyp.it/bqm01ao5, I tried transliterating it as below. yasmin ...
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Does one gain pāpa or puṇya by remaining neutral in a moral crisis?

I came across this quote today and am wondering what the Hindu scriptures have to say about this. Does one gain pāpa or puṇya by remaining neutral during a moral crisis? The darkest places in hell ...
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Are Hindu children meant to serve their parents forever whether they like them or not?

Do children need parents' permission to live away from them? What if parents are just bad apples, should children continue to serve their needs? What do the shastras say? After marriage, did ...
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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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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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What do Hindu scriptures say about gambling?

Is gambling considered righteous or is it a sin? Are Kshatriyas allowed to gamble? Do Kshatriyas have accept a gambling invitation compulsarily? (The Mahabaratha answer seems to say so) Is ...
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Origin of the Sanatan Dharma

What is the point/story of origin of the Sanatan Dharma and why has it been altered as Hindu Dharma?
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Is organ donation allowed? Have any Hindu acharyas commented on this practice?

According to some religions, donating the human organs (especially after one's death) is considered a good practice. So is it a good thing to do according to Hindu scripture? Have any Hindu acharyas ...
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Does Hindu morality come from scripture or is it the other way round?

Background: The question Is the Gadhimai massacre a Hindu ritual? has an answer which says animal sacrifice is against the Hindu principles of ahimsa while the other answer says 'Animal sacrifice is ...
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Did Yudhishthira lie more than once?

From the childhood I was knowing that Yudhishthira had lied just once at the time of Guru Drona Vadha and that was also the half truth half lie. But recently, I came to know that Yudhishthira had also ...
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How can one know their dharma?

Living one's dharma seems to be paramount, but first I must discover what my dharma is. I was born and reared in the West, so how can I discover my dharma? I have read the Gita and it helped me ...
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Why did Krishna give away his own Narayani Sena to Duryodhana?

In the Mahabharata, there is a mention of Duryodhana and Arjuna going to Krishna to seek assistance in the war. The proud Duryodhana sat beside Krishna's head and Arjuna sat near his feet, while ...
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1answer
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What are the canonical texts in Hinduism for morality and ethics?

There are several texts in Hinduism which flirts with the idea of morality and ethics. Itihiasa texts like Mahabharata and Ramayana gives a subjective aura around the subject of morality, notably the ...
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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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Why did Lord Krishna give another life to Parikshit? Was it the only way? Why didn't Pandavas plan another child?

According to Mahabharat, after the epic Kurukshetra war, only Parikshit was the final successor of the Kuru dynasty and while he was still in Uttara's womb, Ashwathama killed him using a Brahmastra. ...
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What is Definition of 'Dharma'

Dharma is a Sanskrit word that has no equivalent in English language. The closest imitation of this word is Righteousness' but after reading even a little bit about Dharma in Hindu scriptures, ...
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What is the dharma behind Lord Vishnu in killing of sage Bhrigu's wife?

Explanation : 1. In Ramayan serial Sage Bhrigu's wife gave shelter to Asuras and refused to hand over them to Lord Vishnu and devas. 2. In end Lord Vishnu killed sage Bhrigu's wife with his ...
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Is it a sin to alter or tamper with scriptures?

If a person interpolates scriptures with a good intent e.g., by replacing offending/controversial words/verses that are not current with the times, but doesn't disclose the modifications to maintain ...
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What is the true meaning of the shlok Dharmo Rakshati Rakshitah?

Dharma Rakshati Rakshitah means if you protect Dharma, then Dharma will protect you. Can someone understand me better
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Krishna Prompting Bhima to Say Lie

In the Kurukshetra war of the Mahabharata, Krishna prompted Bhima to falsely say that Ashwatthama was killed, when Drona was found to be superior to all warriors. Krishna prompted so knowing very well ...