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Dharma
(275 words)

[German Version]

(from Sanskrit “support, foothold, sustainer”), with the general meaning “rule, order,” is a fun-damental concept of Hinduism and is based on the notion that the balance of the world can be maintained by establishing fixed rules. Accordingly, the Indian tradition defines dharma as a system of religious duties and of norms governing law as well as the behavior and actions of the individual as a member of an estate (varṇa) and of his caste (jāti). The observance or transgression of these duties and norms determines whether the form of the next rebirth wi…

Cite this page
Schetelich, Maria, “Dharma”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 04 June 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1877-5888_rpp_SIM_03614>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013



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