This book is a scholarly treatise on the subject of Indian philosophy and is also written by one of its foremost and most well-known proponents. Chaturvedi Badrinath shows that the Mahabharata is the most systematic inquiry into the human condition. Badrinath shows that the concerns of the Mahabharata are the concerns of everyday life––of dharma, artha, kama and moksha. This book dispels several false claims about what is today known as ‘Hinduism’ to show us how individual liberty and knowledge, freedom, equality, and the celebration of love, friendship and relationships are integral to the philosophy of the Mahabharata, because they are integral to human life. What sets this book apart from others is that Badrinath has used more than 500 Sanskrit shlokas, which he has translated himself to illustrate his arguments. Second, his approach to Hindu philosophy is one based in humanism, rather than in divisive politics.
Chaturvedi Badrinath is a philosopher and was a member of the Indian Administrative Service between 1957 and 1989. Badrinath has been Homi Bhabha Fellow (1971–73) and Visiting Professor at Heidelberg University (1971), where he gave a series of seminars on dharma and its application to our times. His other books include Dharma, India and the World Order: Twenty-one Essays (1993); Introduction to the Kamasutra (1999); Finding Jesus in Dharma: Christianity in India (2000); and Swami Vivekananda: The Living Vedanta (2006).