meaning “Eternal or Universal Righteousness” is the original name of what is now
popularly called Hinduism. Sanatana Dharma comprises of spiritual laws
which govern the human existence. Sanatana
Dharma is to human life what natural laws are to the physical phenomena.
Just as the phenomena of gravitation existed before it was
discovered, the spiritual laws of life are eternal laws
which existed before they were discovered by the ancient
rishis (sages) for the present age during the Vedic period. Sanatana Dharma declares that something cannot come out of
nothing and, therefore, the universe itself is the manifestation of the Divine
being. This truth forms the
invocation of the Isa Upanishad (a Hindu scripture):
poornam-idam, poor-nath poornam-udachyate.
Poor-nasya poornam-adaya, poornam-eva-va-sishyate.
is full; this is full. The full comes out of the full.
Taking the full from the full, the full itself remains.
expresses the mystery of creation. This
universe comes forth from the Divine, yet the universe takes nothing from
the Divine and adds nothing to It. Divine
remains ever the same. Since the
universe has come forth from the Divine, all things and beings are sacred and must be treated so in human thought and action.
The Divine sleeps in minerals, awakens in plants, walks in animals
and thinks in humans.
looks upon a person as a part and parcel of the mighty Whole, but never regards
him as “the Measure of all things.”
In the West, “person” is a supreme and final value, while
Sanatana Dharma regards person as a part of the Whole, having the same
vital essence as all other human and sub-human creatures of the universe.
This cosmic view of Hinduism transcends the sectarian or group dogmas and paves
a way for the coexistence of all creatures under the Vedic principle of Vasudev
Kutumbhkam, meaning “The Universe is One Family.”
This principle guides the humankind towards universal harmony
through acceptance and tolerance.
recognizes that the Ultimate Reality, which is the ground of infinite potentiality and
actualization, cannot be limited by any name or concept.
The potential for human wholeness (or in other frames of reference,
enlightenment, salvation, liberation, transformation, blessedness, nirvana,
moksha) is present in every
human being. No race or religion is superior and no color or creed is
inferior. All humans are
spiritually united like the drops of water in an ocean.
one belief, one way of worship or one code of conduct for all.
Do not attempt to destroy different forms of worship,
claiming your own way to be the only right one. Such enforcement of uniformity would be
un-natural and contrary to the
Divine Law. It
hinders the progress of a human being in his/her journey to the state of
importance to sincerity of heart and nobleness of conduct in the field
of religion. Do not claim
to have obtained from God, exclusive and irrevocable power of attorney
to be a dictator and to persecute others on behalf of God, because they
do not agree with you.
claim to have bound the Boundless God.
Do not create inter-religious wars and massacres, forcing your
claims and dogmas on others.
a person freedom to think, freedom to believe, freedom to disbelieve and
freedom to adopt a way of worship, which suits his/her temperament.
After all, what is important in worship of God is the sincerity
of heart, not the outer form of worship.
Don't divide the human race into conflicting armies and camps of
Holy believers and Unholy Others.
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