Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online

Get access

Grace and Compassion
(4,381 words)

Compassion in Hinduism is a key defining virtue of the dharmic and realized human being and a primary attribute of ultimate reality or brahman, particularly when that reality is conceived of as a loving divine being. At the heart of the Hindu understanding of the nature of existence is the conviction that all beings participate in this unitive divine reality. Yet due to ignorance and the obstructions of karman, humans are unaware of this, selfishly acting on behalf of an illusory individual independent self. The goal of the spiritual pursuit is the liberating r…

Cite this page
Martin, Nancy M., “Grace and Compassion”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Editor-in-Chief Associate Editors Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 19 October 2021 <>
First published online: 2018

▲   Back to top   ▲