India has always been a land of seekers. Hindu religious books have answered the most basic question ever occurred to mankind, Where do we come from and what should we do to attain salvation. For Hindus, the ultimate goal of life is to attain Moksha. Indian philosophical schools stressed on the fulfilment of four goals Arth, Dharma, Kama and Moksha.
The two major schools of Philosophy are Orthodox school and Heterodox school of thought. The orthodox school of thought is based on Vedas and has six sub schools called as Shada Darshana. The Heterodox school of thought questioned the Vedas and existence of God.
The six Orthodox subschools are,
The Samkhya Sutra written by great Indian sage Kapil Muni explains salvation through knowledge. It said lack of knowledge is the root cause of all the suffering. It believed in Dualism or Davitvada.
This school explains salvation through the technique of Logical Thinking.
Vaisheshika school is known for its insights into Naturalism and it is a form of atomism in natural philosophy. Vaisheshika explains how ones experiences are derived from dravya (substance), guna(quality),karma (activity), samanya (commonness),vishesha (particularity), amavaya (inherence).
the word Mimamsa literally means reasoning and interpretation. This school believes the eternal truth in Vedas and stresses on the fulfilment of duties prescribed by Vedas to attain salvation.
this school of thought is based on Upanishads. It explains the similarity of nature of the self and Bramh. This school believes if one attains the knowledge of the self then he automatically attains Bramha.
The three Heterodox sub Schools are,
Buddist Philosophy: this school is founded by Gautam Buddha who was born in 563 BCE at Lumbini (Nepal). Buddhism speaks of four noble truths. First, there is suffering in Human life. Second, the fundamental cause of all the suffering is Desire. Third, he advises us to destroy passion and love for materialistic life. Fourth, the liberation can be attained through eightfold path explained in Buddhism.
the Jain Philosophy first told by Rishabha Deva, the first Tirthankara ( wise Person). There are 24 tirthankar and twenty-fourth being the Mahavira around 500 BCE. Jainism believes that right perception and knowledge combined with right conduct can help to attain salvation.
Charvaka School or Lokayata Philosophy:
Brihaspati was the founder of this school of thought. It was among the first school of thought which propagated materialistic view to achieving salvation. This school does not consider ‘Eather’ as one of the elements of earth because it cannot be experienced through perception.