Questions tagged [philosophy]

Questions about Hindu Philosophy, which is divided into six main schools: Sankhya (also called Samkhya), Yoga, Nyaya, Vaisheshika(Vaiśeṣika), Mimamsa and Vedanta.

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9 answers
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Does Science contradict Hinduism? How to deal with scientific discoveries that don't line up with Vedas?

I would like to know if Hinduism and science contradict each other. This is an issue that arises in many religions, the most prominent example being Christianity and its disagreement with evolution. ...
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27 votes
3 answers
3k views

What percentage of Hindus belong to a sect that subscribes to the Vedanta school?

Indian schools of philosophy are traditionally divided into two categories, Astika and Nastika. Astika schools accept the authority of the Vedas as divinely revealed truth (shruti), whereas Nastika ...
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25 votes
8 answers
14k views

Did ancient Yogis float in the air and what is the method to do it?

"In Ancient India Yogis used to float in the Air" I am not sure about this statement but I heard people who have more concentration (possibly through Yoga) floated wherever they wanted. My ...
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25 votes
5 answers
4k views

Why does God allow us to suffer?

If God is a force of good then why is there so much suffering in this world? I thought I had understood the answer to this question after watching this video. Basically it says that if we ...
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22 votes
1 answer
6k views

Is there any scripture that tells story about Lord Vishnu and MahaVishnu?

As per the Shiva Purana, there is a main God Shiva who is Nirakara and thereafter his physical manifestation who is known as Shankara. I know that different Hindu texts about different Gods treat ...
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22 votes
3 answers
49k views

What is the difference between Thenkalai and Vadakalai sects of Sri Vaishnavism?

For those who do not know, there are two main sects of Sri Vaishnavism: Thenkalai and Vadakalai. The Vadakalai sect wear their namam, or thiruman, in a "U" shaped pattern with manjal or yellow like ...
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  • 1,772
21 votes
4 answers
4k views

Why is Sankaracharya accused as Pracchana Bauddha (crypto-buddhist) by many Vedantins?

Let us see some of the accusations of vedantins SANKARA’S ACCUSERS Bhaskara (9th Century CE), the propounder of bhedabheda-siddhanta was one of the earliest Indian philosophers to attack Mayavada. ...
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21 votes
2 answers
8k views

Dvaita vs Advaita vs Vishistadvaita vs Shuddhadvaita vs any other

I hear these terms Dvaita, Advaita, Vishistadvaita, Shuddhadvaita, and may be any other XYZdvaita, etc in most of the questions but I am not very sure what do they refer to. Are these some communities ...
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  • 9,679
20 votes
4 answers
579 views

Why isn't there one Absolute Reality?

This is just to elicit opinion/discussion. There is no ''answer" to it really. You can choose to close it. But it is something that I always wondered about. In the annals of Sanaatana Dharma why isn'...
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  • 217
19 votes
2 answers
863 views

What is the philosophical comparison between non-dualism of Vedanta and Agama?

Vedanta holds an important place in the philosophies of Hinduism. However, some of the lesser known philosophies of Agama too subscribe to non-dualism or advaitavAda. If so what are the main ...
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19 votes
0 answers
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Do any commentators other than Adi Shankaracharya disagree with both Pancharatra and Shaiva Agamas?

As I discuss in this question, by far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy is the Vedanta school, which bases its tenets on the doctrines laid out in the Brahma Sutras, a work by the sage Vyasa ...
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18 votes
5 answers
3k views

Do some people have more Grace of God and some have less?

There are millions of people in world, some are more successful and reach their goals while some try hard to reach their goals or there favorable profession, but fail to; or some people are more ...
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18 votes
5 answers
4k views

'Playing football takes us nearer to heaven rather than reading Bhagavad Gita' but how and why?

That famous line above was uttered by none other than Swami Vivekananda. I admit that I haven't gone through the complete speech yet, but I am curious to know what he meant by that. Did he mean that ...
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18 votes
2 answers
864 views

What is the earliest Hindu work refuting Mleccha religions or philosophies?

There are two kinds of schools of Indian philosophy, Astika and Nastika. Astikas accept the authority of the Vedas, whereas Nastikas reject the authority of the Vedas. The Astika schools are part of ...
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17 votes
4 answers
5k views

According to ShankarAchArya in Advaita, is the universe "unreal" or "unworthy"?

Recently I came across one of the key quote, which sums up Adi ShankarAchArya's Advaita philosophy: The Brahman of the Upanishads is the only Reality, and everything else—this world of manifoldness—...
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17 votes
4 answers
17k views

What is the difference between Buddhi (बुद्धि) and Mann (मन)?

I know Buddhi (बुद्धि) means intelligence/intellect and Mann (मन) means mind. But what is difference between them?
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17 votes
3 answers
9k views

What is the ultimate goal of Hinduism?

I have observed that many Hindus today put a strong focus on liturgy (rituals, cracking coconuts, offering flowers, lighting diyas etc) and narratives (Hindu mythological stories,Puranas, Ramayana,...
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  • 1,221
17 votes
1 answer
830 views

What are all doctrines or philosophies discussed in Brahma Sutra?

Brahma Sutras (also known as Vedanta Sutras) have very profound significance in Vedanta Darshan. They systematize and summarize the spiritual and philosophical teaching of Upanishads. It is considered ...
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17 votes
1 answer
6k views

Difference between Smartas and Advaitins?

What is the difference between a Smarta and an Advaitin? Both are the followers of Adi Sankaracharya only. People who worship Lord Shiva are called Shaivite and those who worship Lord Vishnu are ...
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  • 4,187
16 votes
3 answers
486 views

Is Atma the same as the body?

What logical arguments do our scriptures advance to show that Atma is not something material like the body? How do the six astika schools of Hindu Philosophy(Mimamsa, Samkhya, Yoga, Nyaya, Vaisheshika ...
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15 votes
5 answers
7k views

Do the Trimurti (Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva) cleanly map onto the 3 gunas (sattva, rajas, tamas)?

I've read Shiva referred to as "tamasic", and Brahma seems to be a suitable embodiment of sattva. However, rajas doesn't fit very well here. I'm not sure how to match the energy/activity aspects of ...
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  • 253
15 votes
1 answer
782 views

Moksha for the Soul of Brahma

The life of Brahma is 100 years of Brahma. More information on Hindu Cosmology We are in 51st year of the current Brahma's Life Year. I also know that after Brahma dies, Brahma (the soul in that ...
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  • 4,785
15 votes
1 answer
5k views

What is Shakti Visishtadvaita philosophy?

Does any one know what this(Shakti Visishtadvaita) philosophy is all about? I know what are dvaita, advaita philosophies but this is new one.
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  • 265
15 votes
2 answers
2k views

Does "Free Will" really exist, even if universe repeats itself in perfect pattern?

The concept of universe repeating itself is similar to philosophy of Eternal Return. Such philosophy is subscribed many ancient Indian philosophers as well. In brief: A finitely timed universe ...
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  • 18.9k
15 votes
2 answers
934 views

When were Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism marked as separate religions?

Historically, Buddhism and Jainism were just some of the many sects or philosophical schools in ancient times. When was the separation of religions happened and when were all vedic and non-vedic sects ...
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  • 1,835
15 votes
0 answers
356 views

What are the various forms of Vishnu according to Pancharatra?

Recently while reading Prasthana Bheda of Madhusudan Sarasvati, I found he mentioned four forms of Vishnu according to Pancharatra: Quoting from sanskritdocuments.org: एवं वैष्णवं नारदादिभिः कृतं ...
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14 votes
5 answers
422 views

Vedas and their philosophy

As per my reading from Wikipedia, the mukhya Upanishads discuss the philosophy of vedas. The seeds of advaita and vishishtadvaita philosophies are found in these upanishads as per my limited readings. ...
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  • 311
14 votes
3 answers
922 views

What is the means of attaining Moksha according to the different Astika schools?

There are two kinds of schools of Indian philosophy, Astika and Nastika. Astikas accept the authority of the Vedas, whereas Nastikas reject the authority of the Vedas. The Astika schools are part ...
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14 votes
2 answers
20k views

What is the source of this (Kayena vacha...) text? or Where does it come from?

I am talking about the following shloka (posting it in Sanskrit and English): कायेन वाचा मनसेन्द्रियैर्वा बुद्ध्यात्मना वा प्रकृतेः स्वभावात् । करोमि यद्यद् सकलं परस्मै नारायणायेति समर्पयामि ॥...
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14 votes
1 answer
1k views

What are the Kashmir Agamas defended in Yamunacharya's lost work?

As I discuss in this answer, one of the early movements that was important to the development of Vaishnavism was the ancient Pancharatra movement, whose sacred texts or Agamas consisted of detailed ...
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14 votes
1 answer
2k views

Who is a Shaivite or Shaiva? What are his/her supposed qualities?

Like in this thread we find the definition & qualities of a Vaishnava, I would like to know the same for the Shaiva as well. What is the definition or qualities of a Shaiva or Shaivite.
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14 votes
1 answer
1k views

How does the soul returns in the dead body when a dead person is revived using Amrita?

There are many references in our scriptures when deads are revived to life using Amrita and Mrita Sanjeevani Vidya.. A common accepted vedic doctrine is that soul (along with manomaya, vijnamaya and ...
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13 votes
6 answers
899 views

What is the core message of the Bhagavad-gītā? What are some verses from Bhagavad-gītā that one can refer to, to enrich life in general?

What is (or what are) the core message(s) of the Bhagavad-gītā? What are some verses from Bhagavad-gītā, that one can refer to, to enrich life in general? This question is inspired by Core messages ...
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13 votes
4 answers
6k views

Can a person change his caste in Hinduism?

Each person born as a Hindu has some caste attached to him. As per my understanding he remains in the same caste throughout his life. Currently, I don't think anybody can change his/her caste, but was ...
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13 votes
4 answers
786 views

Any mantras that are not of Sanskrit origin?

Are there any spells (mantras) in Hinduism which are not in Sanskrit, but in other languages. I came across a mantra in Awadhi dialect of Hindi, it's something about blessings for studying and was ...
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13 votes
3 answers
1k views

Which Upanishads are quoted in sage Vyasa's Brahma Sutras?

As I discuss in this answer, each of the four Vedas consists of four portions: Samhitas, the core part of the Vedas which consist of verses heard from the gods; Brahmanas, which provide instructions ...
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13 votes
2 answers
7k views

Was Ubhaya Bharati right in asking a question related to Kama Sutra?

I would like to split question into two parts: 1) Ubhaya Bharati was appointed the judge between Adi Shankaracharya and Mandana Mishra. After Mandana accepts defeat from Shankaracharya, why was ...
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13 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why do enlightened people contradict each other?

Why do enlightened people contradict each other? For example, Adi Shankara was enlightened and he taught Advaita Vedanta, while Mahavira (founder Of Jainism) was also enlightened and he taught and ...
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13 votes
4 answers
3k views

What are Vivartavada and Ajatavada?

In some text relating to advaita I've found two Vada(वाद) i.e doctrine/thesis: Vivartavada (विवर्तवाद) Ajatavada (अजातवाद) I also found some mention Advaita Vedanta as Vivartavada. So, I want to ...
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13 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why are there different classes of पुराणs (Puranas)?

The Padma Purana mentions that the eighteen Puranas are divided into three groups of six: Sattvika, Rajasika, and Tamasika. Why do the Rajasika and Tamasika Puranas exist at all? Does the Padma Purana ...
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  • 876
13 votes
1 answer
4k views

What is the reason behind lokas in Hinduism?

In the Puranas, and already in the Atharvaveda, there are fourteen worlds, seven higher ones (vyahrtis) and seven lower ones (patalas), viz. bhu, bhuvas, svar, mahas, janas, tapas, and satya above and ...
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  • 1,537
12 votes
6 answers
1k views

Have any Hindu philosophers attempted to solve the Riddle of Epicurus?

The Epicurean Paradox or the Riddle of Epicurus goes something like this: If God is willing to prevent evil but not able, then He is not omnipotent. If He is able (to prevent evil) but not ...
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12 votes
3 answers
3k views

K.S. Bhagavan's critique of Adi Shankara

An Indian writer named K.S. Bhagavan published in 1982 a book entitled Shankaracharya and Reactionary Philosophy = ಶಂಕರಾಚಾರ್ಯ ಮತ್ತು ಪ್ರತಿಗಾಮಿತನ. I heard that Bhagavan criticized Adi Shankara in ...
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  • 1,600
12 votes
2 answers
7k views

Is the length of a man's life predetermined?

Has the length of a man's life already been determined in advance, even before a person is born? To answer this question, please be sure to furnish quotations from the scriptures and explain how you ...
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12 votes
4 answers
373 views

What is Advaita?

(Using the "body" and "hand" instead of "Brahman" and "Atman") Ramanuja says, "the hand is the same as the body but the hand is not the body itself". Madhu says, "the hand is not the body and the ...
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  • 123
12 votes
1 answer
1k views

How and why was the first ever thought generated?

We have certain posts which discuss about how the universe was created OR how Brahman imagined to become from one to many. This Qn is about the situation earlier to that. Anything which is ...
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  • 18.9k
12 votes
1 answer
262 views

How do non-vedanta darshanas deal with shruti statements about Brahman?

Vedanta schools extensively deal with the concept of brahman. What do non-vedanta schools like nyaya-vaishesika, samkhya-yoga etc say about shruti statements about Brahman? How do they reconcile ...
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  • 1,541
12 votes
1 answer
213 views

How do the stories of Prahlada and Hanuman show invisible effects of visible causes?

The Paramathabhanga is a work by the Sri Vaishnava Acharya Vedanta Desikan which refutes rival schools of Indian philosophy, both inside and outside of Hinduism. In this chapter of the Paramatha ...
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12 votes
1 answer
535 views

What is Ramanujacharya's argument that the Upanishads must be true if they grant Moksha?

As I discuss in this question, by far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy is the Vedanta school, which bases its tenets on the doctrines laid out in the Brahma Sutras, a work by the sage Vyasa ...
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12 votes
0 answers
598 views

What is the difference between Raudra and Saumya sects of Shaivism?

The term "Shaivite" is often overused nowadays. For instance, Iyer Brahmins are often called Shaivites, but they are actually followers of Adi Shankaracharya's Smartha sect (which I discuss ...
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