Material success and social prestige, one of the four goals of life
one who practices rigid self-denial, esp. as an act of religious devotion
in Hindu belief, a person's essential self
the manifestation of a Hindu deity (especially Vishnu) in human or superhuman or animal form
Short poem that illustrates the expectations Hinduism made for individuals and the promise of salvation that it held out to them; Self-contained Mahabharata; Dialogue between Arjuna(kshatriya warrior going into battle) and Krishna(human incarnation of Vishnu)
The most popular of the three Hindu paths to salvation. emphasizing loving devotion to one's chosen god or goddess.
a single spiritual power that Hindus believe lives in everything
The highest of the four classes of the caste system, made up of priests.
a social structure in which classes are determined by heredity
In Hindu belief, a person's religious and moral duties
One of three Hindu paths to salvation, emphasizing knowing the true nature of reality through learning and meditation.
the 4 goals which are knowledge of love, sexual and sensual pleasure, joy and happiness
Sanskirt: "the path of works." One of the three Hindu paths to salvation, emphasizing performing right actions according to dharma.
a member of the royal or warrior Hindu caste
cosmic illusion brought about by divine creative power
The Hindu concept of the spirit's 'liberation' from the endless cycle of rebirths.
the doctrine that reality consists of a single basic substance or element
A collection of 1,017 Sanskrit hymns composed about 1500 BC or earlier; Hinduism's oldest sacred text.
A trance-like state in which self-consciousness is lost, and the mind is absorbed into the ultimate reality; the culmination of the eight steps of Yoga
the endless series of births, deaths, and rebirths to which all beings are subject
a system of Hindu philosophy and one approach within Jnana Marga asserting that reality comprises two distinct categories: matter and eternal selves
A wandering ascetic who has advanced to the fourth and highest stage of life.
the traditional practice of burning a widow on her husband's funeral pyre
the lowest of the four varnas: the servants and workers of low status
Any of a group of philosophical treatises contributing to the theology of ancient Hinduism, elaborating on the earlier Vedas.
The third of the four classes of the caste system, made up of producers, such as farmers, merchants, and artisans.
school of philosophy; everything is a cosmic illusion; all reality is brahman
a system of exercises practiced as part of the Hindu discipline to promote control of the body and mind