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Moksha: On the Hindu Quest for Immortality

  • Sudhir Kakar
Chapter

Abstract

This essay discusses the psychological underpinnings of moksha, the release from the cycles of death and rebirth, which has been traditionally viewed as the highest aim of human life among Hindus in India. It takes the form of a conversation between two educated modern Indians, one a skeptic and the other sympathetic to the religious tradition. Both agree that the all-pervasive yet unacknowledged death anxiety generates the wish for immortality encapsulated in moksha, but differ on the origins of death anxiety, and on whether the immortality offered by religious visions, such as that of moksha, is less valuable than the secular immortality of leaving behind a legacy or living in one’s offspring through genetic transmission.

Keywords

Immortality Death anxiety Rebirth Moksha Mahabharata 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pulwado PequenoBenaulimIndia

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