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Prajnavada In Hinduism

In Hinduism, Prajnavada is the understanding of dharma, artha, and kama. Prajna is the intelligence, which gives one the power to deal with all worldly affairs, to think about society and one’s own personal life in a correct way. Prajna is the sense of the good and the bad in a man. Hindu rishis were always concerned with the reality of life; moksha has a place only after artha (earning mone), dharma (doing rituals and duties of life according to Shastras) and kama (enjoying worldly pleasures).

In the Mahabharata, when Dhritarashtra had sleepless nights because of anxiety for this sons (the chapter is known as ‘Prajagar Parva’ ( pra – highly, jagar – sleepless), he called Vidura who was capable of giving useful advice. Vidura addresses Dhritarashtra as mahaprajna – one who has superb prajna, or intelligence. Addressing him in this way, Vidura indirectly gives a hint to his brother Dhritarashtra that he already had the wisdom to understand properly how to tackle this crucial situation.

A man of prajna or intelligence knows that this mortal body is the abode of the immortal self. He strives according to his capacity; desires do not overpower him. He decides about this duties only after thinking deeply. He gives proper respect to his elders. He has reverence for his mother and father. He serves his teacher cheerfully. He is always hospitable to his guests.

A man of intelligence knows that fear, anger, laziness and lust are harmful. He does not interfere in other’s matters. If he loses something he is not overwhelmed with grief. He does not mourn for those who cannot return. He does not get bewildered by misfortune.

Intelligence is extremely powerful; an arrow can fail to hit the target, but by using his intelligence a person can destroy a whole kingdom.

Prajnavada is definitely related to day-to-day life. An intelligent man is tolerant at the time of trouble. He is hard working. His way of working is always well-organized; he does not let people know about his plans. Heat or cold, fear or love, wealth or poverty cannot interrupt his work. He loves giving a high quality of work. He does not get excited when honored, nor affected by insult. He  knows the reality of each and everything in this world; he is efficient enough to do any type of work.

Hindu rishis were aware of the fact that if a person was incompetent in the fields of artha, dharma and kama, he cannot be fit for spiritual enlightenment. If a person wants moksha (the fourth purushartha according to Hindu concepts), he should know how to shoulder the responsibilities of life.