30 Sec Answer: The most important dharma is Ahimsa, which means non-violence or harmlessness.
Dharma is an ancient Indian concept that has many meanings and interpretations. It is a complex and nuanced philosophical system, but at its core, it is about living in harmony with the natural laws of the universe and understanding our place within it. The word itself comes from the Sanskrit root ‘dhr’, meaning to uphold or support. In this article, we will explore what is considered to be the most important dharma and how we can apply it to our lives today.
What Is Dharma?
Dharma refers to the cosmic law that governs all of creation, both seen and unseen. It includes values such as righteousness, truthfulness, justice, morality, compassion, and selflessness. Dharma provides guidance for ethical behavior and helps us find meaning in life. According to Hinduism, there are four fundamental duties or goals that make up dharma – these are known as the Purusharthas. These four main objectives are artha (wealth), kama (pleasure), dharma (duty) and moksha (liberation). Each of these pursuits has its own set of rules and regulations that must be followed in order to achieve the ultimate goal of liberation.
What Is Ahimsa?
Ahimsa is one of the most important dharmas because it forms the basis for all other aspects of dharma. Ahimsa literally means non-violence or harmlessness. This involves refraining from causing any physical or mental harm to any living being through thoughts, words, or actions. It also includes taking responsibility for your own actions and being mindful of how they might affect others. In Buddhism, ahimsa is considered one of the five precepts that should be followed by laypeople who wish to lead a moral life. In Jainism, it is even more strictly enforced – those who follow Jainism must adhere to a strict vegetarian diet and strive towards complete non-violence against all living creatures in their thoughts, speech and deeds.
Why Is Ahimsa So Important?
Ahimsa is so important because it sets a foundation upon which other dharmic principles can be built upon. If you want to live an ethical life based on dharma, then you must start with ahimsa first. Violence begets violence and if we want peace in our world then we must first start by eliminating violence from our own lives. We must take responsibility for our actions and cultivate love instead of hatred in ourselves and others. Only when we have developed a deep sense of respect for all living beings can we begin to fully understand what dharma truly means.
How Can We Practice Ahimsa?
Practicing ahimsa can be challenging but it doesn’t have to be impossible. Here are some simple ways that we can practice ahimsa on a daily basis:
1) Respect all living beings – This includes not only animals but also plants and insects as well as people from different cultures and backgrounds than us.
2) Cultivate loving kindness – Take time each day to focus on sending love out into the world rather than negative energy or judgmental thoughts about others.
3) Choose compassionate words – Speak kindly about yourself and others so that you create a positive atmosphere rather than one filled with animosity or criticism.
4) Avoid unnecessary consumption – Be mindful about what you consume whether it’s food, clothing or entertainment so that you don’t end up supporting businesses whose practices may involve animal cruelty or exploitation of workers/resources.
5) Exercise mindfulness – Pay attention to how your actions impact others around you so that you can act in accordance with ahimsa whenever possible.
What Are Some Other Dharmic Principles?
Besides ahimsa there are many other important dharmic principles including:
1) Satya – truthfulness; speaking only the truth without any exaggeration or deception
2) Asteya – non-stealing; refraining from taking anything belonging to another person without their permission
3) Brahmacharya – celibacy; abstaining from sexual activities until marriage
4) Kshama – forgiveness; letting go of anger or resentment towards someone who has wronged you
5) Daya – compassion; having empathy for those less fortunate than you
6) Aparigraha – non-attachment; freeing yourself from material possessions in order to focus on spiritual matters
How Does Dharma Relate To Karma?
Karma is closely related to dharma as they both influence our future outcomes depending on how we live our present lives. While karma deals with cause-and-effect cycles across lifetimes according to Hinduism, dharma emphasizes righteous action during this lifetime by adhering to specific codes of conduct established by society such as honesty, kindness etc.. Karma has no intentionality behind it whereas dharma does since intentional acts like generosity will bring good results whereas stealing will result in bad karma due to breaking societal norms associated with dharma . Thus it can be said that karma follows from following (or violating) one’s dharma throughout one’s life here on earth while focusing on doing one’s duty according to God’s plan for human beings rather than solely following worldly desires & ambitions .
How Can We Incorporate Dharma Into Our Lives?
Incorporating dharma into our lives requires patience, dedication and effort over time as it cannot happen overnight nor should shortcuts be taken along the way as this would violate its core teachings & defeat its purpose altogether . However here are some tips on how one can get started:
1) Get Educated – Start learning more about various aspects of Dharma & Hindu philosophy such as reincarnation , Atman , Brahman , Moksha , caste system , Upanishads etc .
2) Follow Your Own Path – Don’t try & copy someone else’s path just because they seem successful but rather find what works best for you & stick with it since every individual journey is unique .
3) Reflect On Your Actions – Think deeply about why certain decisions were made & what could have been done differently before moving forward next time .
4) Make Kindness Your Priority – Place importance on treating everyone kindly & fairly regardless of their background/beliefs etc since Dharma teaches us about equality between all beings.