What is a marriage in Hinduism?

According to the Purusharthas (four aims of life — Dharma — duty, Artha — prosperity/security, Kama — pleasure/enjoyment, Moksha — liberation) are the means to achieve a meaningful life. The word purusha means human being, soul, and ‘artha’ means not only wealth but also purpose/objective. The Purushshartas revolve around Varnashrama (4 stages of human life). These four stages are:

Brahmacharya: student phase of life

Grihastha: married phase of life and duties of a family member

Vanaprastha: retirement phase, handing over responsibilities to future generations

Sanyasa: phase of giving up material desires

Thus, marriage is…










The American Hindu

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