Purushartha, Puruṣārtha, Purusha-artha: 20 definitions
Purushartha means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, the history of ancient India, Marathi, Hindi. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.
The Sanskrit term Puruṣārtha can be transliterated into English as Purusartha or Purushartha, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).
Alternative spellings of this word include Purusharth.
Purana and Itihasa (epic history)Source: archive.org: Shiva Purana - English Translation
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ) refers to the “four aims of life”, according to the Śivapurāṇa 2.2.41.—Accordingly, as Viṣṇu and others eulogized Śiva:—“[...] obeisance to Vāma, Vāmarūpa, Vāmanetra, Aghora, the great lord and the Vikaṭa. Obeisance to Tatpuruṣa, to Nātha, the ancient Puruṣa, the bestower of the four aims of life (i.e., puruṣārtha-pradāna), Vratin, and Parameṣṭhin. Obeisance to you, Īśānas, Īśvara, Brahman, of the form of Brahman, the Supreme Soul”.Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
The Purana (पुराण, purāṇas) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahapuranas total over 400,000 shlokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.
Mīmāṃsā (school of philosophy)Source: Srimatham: Mīmāṃsa: The Study of Hindu Exegesis
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ) refers to a primary ethical precept (dharma) which is conducive to personal as well as universal welfare, e.g. “Non-aggression (ahiṃsa) is the highest form of Dharma”.
Mimamsa (मीमांसा, mīmāṃsā) refers to one of the six orthodox Hindu schools of philosophy, emphasizing the nature of dharma and the philosophy of language. The literature in this school is also known for its in-depth study of ritual actions and social duties.
Dharmashastra (religious law)Source: Knowledge Traditions & Practices of India: Education: Systems & Practices
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ) or Puruṣārthacatuṣṭaya (“four ends of life”).—Learners were taught to grow by pursuing the realisation of puruṣārtha-catuṣṭaya (four ends of life), dharma (righteousness), artha (material well-being), kāma (enjoyment), and mokṣa (liberation from worldly ties). Pupils were trained to guide their life in consonance with dharma, the modeling principle for the individual, the family and the society. Dharma required all, including students, to perform their duties towards parents, teachers, people and gods.
Dharmashastra (धर्मशास्त्र, dharmaśāstra) contains the instructions (shastra) regarding religious conduct of livelihood (dharma), ceremonies, jurisprudence (study of law) and more. It is categorized as smriti, an important and authoritative selection of books dealing with the Hindu lifestyle.
Arthashastra (politics and welfare)Source: Knowledge Traditions & Practices of India: Indian Ethics: Individual and Social
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ, “renunciation”) refers to the concept of “four ends of life”.—These four ends of life are the goals which are desirable in them and also needed for fulfilment of human aspirations.
The four puruṣārthas are:
- righteousness (dharma);
- worldly gain (artha);
- fulfilment of desire; (kāma);
- liberation (mokṣa).
The fulfilment of all of these four ends of life is important for man. In this classification, dharma and mokṣa are most important from the ethical point of view. They give right direction and purpose to human life. For instance, acquiring wealth (artha) is a desirable objective, provided however it also serves dharma, that is, the welfare of the society.
Arthashastra (अर्थशास्त्र, arthaśāstra) literature concerns itself with the teachings (shastra) of economic prosperity (artha) statecraft, politics and military tactics. The term arthashastra refers to both the name of these scientific teachings, as well as the name of a Sanskrit work included in such literature. This book was written (3rd century BCE) by by Kautilya, who flourished in the 4th century BCE.
Vaishnavism (Vaishava dharma)Source: Pure Bhakti: Bhajana-rahasya - 2nd Edition
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ) refers to:—The four goals of human life–kāma, artha, dharma and mokṣa. (cf. Glossary page from Bhajana-Rahasya).Source: Pure Bhakti: Brhad Bhagavatamrtam
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ) refers to:—The four goals of human life: sense enjoyment (kāma), economic development (artha), religiosity (dharma), and liberation (mokṣa). (cf. Glossary page from Śrī Bṛhad-bhāgavatāmṛta).
Vaishnava (वैष्णव, vaiṣṇava) or vaishnavism (vaiṣṇavism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshipping Vishnu as the supreme Lord. Similar to the Shaktism and Shaivism traditions, Vaishnavism also developed as an individual movement, famous for its exposition of the dashavatara (‘ten avatars of Vishnu’).
General definition (in Hinduism)Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism
Purushārtha (पुरुषार्थ): The four chief aims of human life. Arranged from lowest to highest, these goals are: sensual pleasures (kama), worldly status and security (artha), personal righteousness and social morality (dharma), and liberation from the cycle of reincarnation (moksha).
India history and geogprahySource: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary
Puruṣa-artha.—(IE 7-1-2), ‘four’. Note: puruṣa-artha is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.
The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as royal dynasties, rulers, tribes, local festivities and traditions and regional languages. Ancient India enjoyed religious freedom and encourages the path of Dharma, a concept common to Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.
Languages of India and abroad
Marathi-English dictionarySource: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary
puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ).—m (S) A common term for the four ends or objects of the existence of man; viz. dharma, artha, kāma, mōkṣa The acquisition of merit by pious and virtuous acts; the pursuit of fame, riches, or power; the enjoyment of the pleasures of sense; and the seeking and working out of final emancipation. 2 (Poetically and popularly.) Prowess, puissance, martial daring.Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ).—m The end and aim of human existence. Prowess, martial daring.
Marathi is an Indo-European language having over 70 million native speakers people in (predominantly) Maharashtra India. Marathi, like many other Indo-Aryan languages, evolved from early forms of Prakrit, which itself is a subset of Sanskrit, one of the most ancient languages of the world.
Sanskrit dictionarySource: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary
1) any one of the four principal objects of human life; i. e. धर्म अर्थ, काम (dharma artha, kāma) and मोक्ष (mokṣa).
2) human effort or exertion (puruṣakāra); धर्मार्थकाममोक्षाश्च पुरुषार्था उदाहृताः (dharmārthakāmamokṣāśca puruṣārthā udāhṛtāḥ) Agni P.; H. Pr.35.
3) something which when done results in the satisfaction of the performer; यस्मिन् कृते पदार्थे पुरुषस्य प्रीतिर्भवति स पुरुषार्थः पदार्थः (yasmin kṛte padārthe puruṣasya prītirbhavati sa puruṣārthaḥ padārthaḥ) ŚB. on MS.4.1.2.
Derivable forms: puruṣārthaḥ (पुरुषार्थः).Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary
(-rthaḥ) A human object: as the gratification of desire, acquirement of wealth, discharge of duty, and final emancipation. n.
(-rthaṃ) Adv. For, or on account of man. E. puruṣa, and artha object.Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Benfey Sanskrit-English Dictionary
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ).—m. 1. the object or aim of man. 2. human exertion.
Puruṣārtha is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms puruṣa and artha (अर्थ).Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Cappeller Sanskrit-English Dictionary
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ).—[masculine] any object or aim of men; prayojana [neuter] means for obtaining it.Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary
1) Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ):—[from puruṣa] m. any object of human pursuit
2) [v.s. ...] any one of the four objects or aims of existence (viz. kāma, the gratification of desire; artha, acquirement of wealth; dharma, discharge of duty; mokṣa, final emancipation), [Manu-smṛti; Prabodha-candrodaya; Kapila] (-tva n.), [Sāṃkhyakārikā] etc.
3) [v.s. ...] human effort or exertion, [Mahābhārata; Rāmāyaṇa] etc.Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Yates Sanskrit-English Dictionary
Puruṣārtha (पुरुषार्थ):—[puruṣā+rtha] (rthaḥ) 1. m. Object of pursuit. adv. (thaṃ) For man as wealth.
Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family (even English!). Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.
See also (Relevant definitions)