CREDOS : Charvaka

The Hindu materialism or Charvaka takes its name from sage Charvaka. The most important book of this system was the Brihaspati Sutra. So far, nobody has seen this book. We only have quotations from the book written by authors to refute the Charvaka philosophy. The Charvaka philosophy is known as Nastika philosophy in Hinduism because this philosophy

is independent of Vedic ideas and principles. It rejected the existence of God and rejected religion as an aberration.

According to this philosophy, the material world is real and it exists alone; our knowledge of it comes from sense perception. Matter is made of air, earth, fire and water. Consciousness is only a function of matter, soul means body, there is no life after death, there is no God and the world made itself, the pursuit of pleasure is the goal of man. The Vedas are written by clowns. The Law of Karma has no basis. This philosophy states, “Enjoy life while you can, for once cremated, you will never return to this earth.”

I can go on stating different aspects of this philosophy and they will sound like an atheistic philosophy of today. To be very frank, I feel many of the statements of this philosophy are like saying “The earth is flat” without any proper basis at all. At the same time, the

mere existence of this philosophy in Hinduism is the most important symbol of Hindu tolerance. In any other religion, apostles of this type of philosophy would have been crucified or burnt alive. — Am I a Hindu?