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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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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 ...
20
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8answers
10k 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 question ...
18
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3answers
2k 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 ...
17
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1answer
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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 ...
17
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3answers
29k 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 ...
17
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2answers
3k 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 ...
16
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5answers
2k 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 ...
16
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2answers
427 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 ...
15
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5answers
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 ...
15
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3answers
2k 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. ...
15
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2answers
404 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 ...
14
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5answers
424 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'...
14
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1answer
528 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 ...
14
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3answers
367 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 ...
14
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1answer
3k 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.
14
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3answers
8k 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,...
14
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1answer
4k 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 ...
14
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3answers
731 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 ...
13
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4answers
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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?
13
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2answers
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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 ...
13
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1answer
418 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 ...
13
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2answers
1k 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 ...
13
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1answer
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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 ...
13
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0answers
238 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 ...
13
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0answers
591 views

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 ...
12
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3answers
774 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 ...
12
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1answer
668 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 ...
12
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0answers
869 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.
11
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6answers
714 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 ...
11
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3answers
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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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4answers
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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—...
11
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5answers
274 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. ...
11
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3answers
351 views

In Hinduism, what does “immortal” mean? Is there a limit on an immortal's lifespan?

I would like to clarify that this question is not about immortals, or about how to become an immortal. It is about the word immortal in Hinduism. We have a very brief idea, that an immortal is only a ...
11
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2answers
10k 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 ॥...
11
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1answer
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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 ...
11
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1answer
158 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 ...
11
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1answer
139 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 ...
11
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1answer
624 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 ...
11
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0answers
295 views

What are the different Vaishnava interpretations on the nature of Lord Vishnu's physical form?

I understand that Lord Vishnu's body is aprakrita, composed of sat-chit-ananda, but is it understood to have a physical reality? i.e. four arms, two legs, one head, two eyes, five fingered hands, ie, ...
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4answers
4k 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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4answers
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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 ...
10
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2answers
3k 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 ...
10
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4answers
430 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 ...
10
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2answers
398 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 ...
10
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2answers
2k views

How does Dvaita philosophy explain Moksha?

From what I've understood, Moksha means attaining union with the Supreme Soul. But Dvaita philosophy says that the individual souls (jiivatma) are different from the Supreme Soul (paramatma). If ...
10
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2answers
297 views

What is the Vishishtadvaitin equivalent to “Brahma Satyam Jagat Mithya Jeevo Brahmaiva Naparah”?

The philosophy of Advaita Vedanta was summed up by Adi-Shankara in a single verse: Brahma Satyam Jagat Mithya, Jivo Brahmaiva Naparah English Translation: Brahman is the only Truth, the world ...
10
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1answer
205 views

Has Hinduism ever tried to enfold Christianity (or other semitic religions)?

I am currently reading Swami Prabhavananda The Spiritual Heritage of India (1962) and find it very clear and informative (better than e.g. Heinrich Zimmer's Philosophies of India so far). Early on it ...
10
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1answer
485 views

Reference request for Swami Vivekananda's quote on life coming from the moon

Swami Vivekananda makes a passing remark in one of his lectures (Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, V2 p90) of the following: By the by, it may interest some of you to know that there are ...
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5answers
2k views

I want scripture-based explanation for “God is Everywhere”

Most dominant philosophy in Hinduism is that God is everywhere and in everything. I want to understand this in more detail. As per science we know that around us there are two distinct things: Space-...
9
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2answers
1k views

Debate between Maṇḍana Miśra and Ādi Śankara

I have read that there was a debate between Maṇḍana Miśra, an exponent of Mīmāmsā, and Ādi Śankara, an exponent of Advaita, in which Maṇḍana Miśra's wife was the judge. Ādi Śankara won the debate and ...