"Dharma,” that which supports or holds, is an important and extremely useful concept, but there is no equivalent expression in Western languages that conveys its meaning or beauty. Dharma is a natural result of truth-love, goodness in action. It upholds health and integrity of people and society. Awareness of what is dharmic expands with experience, individually and collectively. Laws and customs ought to reflect dharma, but often do not. People have a right to their bodies, minds, and the fruit of their labor, and depriving them of it by force or deceit is not dharmic. Dharmic trading is vital for the economic integrity of a society. Deception and failing to honor one’s pledges, including pledges to serve the public, is not dharmic. When desire and one’s dharma lead in opposite directions, one has the opportunity for spiritual growth and building character. Individuals and communities may have very different dharma.
Current revision: paper November 22nd, 2021 (first version: 2021 July 27th); recording November 2021. New versions clarify or expand points in the original thesis; the points are unchanged.
The content of these presentations has been garnered through observation, contemplation, hopefully insight, and, most importantly, experience. Ideas and assertions are simply presented for consideration. The effort is not to prove or convince, but rather to present ideas for one’s own thought, research, innate common sense, and experience.
References are included only if information is specific and may not be generally known. No offense whatsoever is taken at any disagreement or counter-assertion. Many disagreements are due to semantics. Take whatever is useful and ignore the rest. If something fits and is useful, wonderful!
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