Meaning of Life / Sinn des Lebens / Significado da Vida / Significado de la Vida

In Hinduism, Brahman connotes the highest Universal Principle, the Ultimate Reality in the universe and  it is the material, efficient, formal and final cause of all that exists. It is the pervasive, genderless, infinite, eternal truth which does not change, yet is the cause of all changes. Brahman as a metaphysical concept is the single binding unity behind the diversity in all that exists in the universe.

According to Hinduism, the meaning of life is four-fold, to achieve Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Moksha:

The first, dharma, means to act virtuously and righteously, to act morally and ethically throughout one’s life. Dharma also has a secondary aspect; since Hindus believe that they are born in debt to the Gods and other Human beings, dharma calls for Hindus to repay this debt. The five different debts are as follows: debt to the Gods for their blessings, debt to parents and teachers, debt to guests, debt to other Human beings, and debt to all other living beings.

The second, Artha, refers to the pursuit of wealth and prosperity in one’s life. Importantly, one must stay within the bounds of dharma while pursuing this wealth and prosperity (i.e. one must not step outside moral and ethical grounds).

The third purpose of a Hindu’s life is to seek Kama. In simple terms, Kama can be defined as obtaining enjoyment from life.

The fourth meaning of life is Moksha, enlightenment. By far the most difficult meaning of life to achieve, Moksha may take an individual just one lifetime to accomplish or it may take several. However, it is considered the most important meaning of life and offers such rewards as liberation from reincarnation, self-realization, enlightenment, or unity with God.

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