What is Dharma


What is Dharma? The real holy teachings of a Guru, also known as the natural law of the universe

Dharma cannot be comprehended by our senses, but through mental understanding we can experience it, then live it, then be it.

What is Dharma

The technical definition of Dharma is related to the order  of, or natural law of the universe. In a more simplified version, it refers to our moral conduct, precepts and teachings (which are a sort of law) of a master and method. Since the master represents God, Dharma becomes the holy teachings of God. Dharma is the real truth, not theory in a book as it is said that Dharma cannot be spoken, it must be imparted, experienced and shared.

In any spiritual movement we have the master (sat guru), the Sangha (assembly) and the Dharma.  The guru teaches his Sangha (the congregation, disciples, or followers) using the holy Dharma God has empowered him/her with. By following the Dharma strictly, the followers are able to achieve the ultimate goal of the method. The Dharma protects the followers from Maya‘s trap and ensures they live within the laws of the universe. First we intellectually understand Dharma, then we experience the dharmas and ultimately, we become the Dharma.

As with all things Buddhist, the definition is somewhat complicated and abstract. The word itself is an ancient Indian Sanskrit, closely related to the Pali form known as Dhamma. In other languages, it is known as  ‘fa’ in Chinese, ‘ho’ in Japanese, and ‘chos’ in Tibetan.

As an example, let’s look at Buddhism.

  • Guru was the Buddha
  • Sangha was his original Arhats, monks, nuns and lay disciples. These days there are millions of followers who practice to some degree
  • Dharma are the precepts, diet, meditation, holy Sutra’s and the way of life

For Christianity

  • Jesus Christ was the master
  • Sangha were the Apostles and those he baptized by the light (his disciples)
  • Dharma are the commandments, Holy Bible and covenant with God

In eastern philosophy there are also Dharma guards or protectors. Buddha had highly elevated invisible beings protecting his temples and followers from astral/hell beings. Often in front of temples you will see statues of these beings, often they look demonic or quite ugly because they came from lower realms to be uplifted by the master, with a duty to protect the sacred assembly. These days we have symbolic dharma guards that look after the congregation just like body guards.