Dharma

Dharma (/ˈdɑːrmə/; Sanskrit: धर्म, translit. dharma, pronounced  (About this sound listen); Pali: धम्म, translit. dhamma, translit. dhamma) is a philosophical or religious concept of Indian origin often meaning duty or law. It is a key concept with multiple meanings in the Indian religionsHinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. There is no single-word translation for dharma in Western languages.

In Hinduism, dharma signifies behaviours that are considered to be in accord with Ṛta, the order that makes life and universe possible, and includes duties, rights, laws, conduct, virtues and "right way of living". In Buddhism, dharma means "cosmic law and order", and is also applied to the teachings of the Buddha. In Buddhist philosophy, dhamma/dharma is also the term for "phenomena". Dharma in Jainism refers to the teachings of tirthankara (Jina) and the body of doctrine pertaining to the purification and moral transformation of human beings. For Sikhs, the word dharm means the path of righteousness and proper religious practice.

The word dharma was already in use in the historical Vedic religion, and its meaning and conceptual scope has evolved over several millennia. The antonym of dharma is adharma.

The Classical Sanskrit noun dharma is a derivation from the root dhṛ, which means "to hold, maintain, keep", and takes a meaning of "what is established or firm", and hence "law". It is derived from an older Vedic Sanskrit n-stem dharman-, with a literal meaning of "bearer, supporter", in a religious sense conceived as an aspect of Rta.

In the Rigveda, the word appears as an n-stem, dhárman-, with a range of meanings encompassing "something established or firm" (in the literal sense of prods or poles). Figuratively, it means "sustainer" and "supporter" (of deities). It is semantically similar to the Greek Themis ("fixed decree, statute, law"). In Classical Sanskrit, the noun becomes thematic: dharma-.

The word dharma derives from Proto-Indo-European root

This page was last edited on 18 June 2018, at 06:07.
Reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhamma under CC BY-SA license.

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