Before I look at each of the specific aspects though, the question arises: “How can one be moral?” By definition, to be moral is to be concerned with the principles or rules of right conduct or the distinction between right and wrong. Expanding on this is the principle of ethics. This is simply a system of moral principles.
At first glance this information may seem trivial, however, it is to the contrary. In Hinduism as well as any religion, the main goals and objectives of that religion help to define its morals. For example, one of the goals of Hinduism is moksha, or the release from the cycle of samsara. There are several ways to reach this goal. If someone were to choose the karma path towards moksha, then their morality would be affected in the sense that selflessness would be necessary to reach this goal. Alternatively, if someone were to choose the Jhana path, then selflessness would not matter and not pursuing knowledge could be seen as immoral.
Considering this, it is necessary to look at some of the main goals and recommendations for a Hindu life in order to determine the changing morals and ethics. This brings me to the first topic that I am going to evaluate and that is the gunas. The gunas may be interpreted generally as the qualities, tendencies, or states of active consciousness (Widget, 232). In other words, the gunas are concerned with the inner and psychological measures o...
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...will talk about is that of the varna system. In Indian culture, the varna system is the caste system. Dharma, which is necessary part of life is partly seen as duty to one’s caste system. This is detailed in the Bhagavad Gita. Due to this, what is seen as right or wrong will vary based on which varna one belongs to.
From my presentation, the discussion of these four topics will help clarify the topic of morality and ethics in Hindism. Individually, they each demonstate that the moral code in Hinduism is not concrete and fluctuates based on how one is practicing. On a whole, they demonstrate the overarching theme of dharma, which can be loosely defined as religious duty and how this is of the utmost importance in Hinduism. By evaluating morality based on the varying life stages and goals in Hinduism, a better picture is painted as to how morality is viewed overall.
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