Saturday, June 26, 2010


The Sanskrit word "Dharma" stands for "that which upholds". Simply speaking if one upholds Dharma, then Dharma will uphold them. The word Dharma has other meanings such as Law and Responsibility but the core meaning (based on the root "Dhru" meaning "Hold") is "that which upholds".

An amusing fable to drive home the point: A woodcutter was sitting on the branch of a tree and cutting it. He used a very good axe and did a great job cutting the wood. He focused really hard on his job and was confident he would succeed in his act of cutting the wood. He was successful in this short term act, but as you might have guessed he fell down because he cut the very branch on which he was sitting on.

"Beneficial to most", largely beneficial or for greater good is also Dharma. Almost every activity has some negativity associated with it. That which benefits the most is Dharma.

If one were to contemplate and reflect deeply on any action, the light of "Dharma" will shine at them. Dharma is that which is naturally right. In all actions, reflect on what is "Dharma".

When seeking material wealth: One should seek wealth in order to sustain oneself but one should always make sure that Dharma is adhered to (for e.g. does it benefit the most and is for the greater good?). In other words, put first things first... if what you are doing does not uphold Dharma, then avoid it even if it promises great wealth. Wealth that is earned by following what is naturally right is long lasting.

This is the wisdom of the ages - perhaps forgotten in the din of daily life but something to remember time and again!