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Kama

concept in Hinduism and Buddhism broadly referring to any desire for various forms of enjoyment in life

Kama (Sanskrit, Pali; Devanagari: काम) means "desire, wish, longing" in Hindu and Buddhist literature.

QuotesEdit

 
Deity Kama whose arrows trigger desire - Kama, in the mythology of India, the god of love. During the Vedic age (2nd millennium–7th century BCE), he personified cosmic desire, or the creative impulse, and was called the firstborn of the primeval Chaos that makes all creation possible. In later periods he is depicted as a handsome youth, attended by heavenly nymphs, who shoots love-producing flower-arrows. - Encyclopædia Britannica.
 
The concept of love represented in the Ramayana appears to be the same as that current in later Indian literature. The feeling of love had been conceived as a god, who was known as Manmatha, Kama, Ananga and Kandarpa. - Ananda W. P. Guruge.
 
Because the goddess has come to the great mountain Nilakuta to have sexual enjoyment with me [Shiva], she is called Kamakhya, who resides there in secret. Because she gives love, is a loving woman, is the embodiment of love, is the beloved, she restores the limbs of Kama, she is called Kamakhya. Now hear of the great glory of Kamakhya, who, as primordial nature, sets the entire world in motion. - Kalika Purana.
  • Kama, in the mythology of India, the god of love. During the Vedic age (2nd millennium–7th century BCE), he personified cosmic desire, or the creative impulse, and was called the firstborn of the primeval Chaos that makes all creation possible. In later periods he is depicted as a handsome youth, attended by heavenly nymphs, who shoots love-producing flower-arrows. His bow is of sugarcane, his bowstring a row of bees. Once directed by the other gods to arouse Shiva’s passion for Parvati, he disturbed the great god’s meditation on a mountaintop. Enraged, Shiva burned him to ashes with the fire of his third eye. Thus, he became Ananga (Sanskrit: “the Bodiless”). Some accounts say Shiva soon relented and restored him to life after the entreaties of Kama’s wife, Rati. Others hold that Kama’s subtle bodiless form renders him even more deftly omnipresent than he would be if constrained by bodily limitation.
  • The Sanskrit term kama also refers to one of the four proper aims of human life—pleasure and love. A classic textbook on erotic love and human pleasure, the Kama-sutra (5th century CE), is attributed to the sage Vatsyayana.
  • The concept of love represented in the Ramayana appears to be the same as that current in later Indian literature. The feeling of love had been conceived as a god, who was known as Manmatha, Kama, Ananga and Kandarpa.
  • To Kala there is no relationship, no reason, no valour; it (respects) no friendship or kinship no cause nor one’s control. But the evolution of Kala should be well observed by him who sees. Dharma, Artha, and Kama are established in the course of Kala (Kalakrama).
  • The first three goals pertain to the world we know, whereas moksha involves freedom from the world and from desires... Moksha, although the ultimate goal, is emphasized more in the last two stages of life, while artha and kama are primary only during Grihasthshram, the householder stage.... Hindus themselves prefer to use the Sanskrit term sanatana dharma for their religious tradition.... According to Hinduism, our experience, our reason and our dialogue with others - especially with enlightened individuals - provide provide various means of testing our understanding of spiritual and moral truth...
  • As one might expect, having noted the emotional orientation of manas clearly expressed in the “Nasadiyahymn [Hymn of Creation in Rigveda] — where it is said that desire (kama) is the original seed of manas — the most common function of manas in the Rg Veda is its function as the locus of a wide range of emotions.
    • N. Ross Reat in: "The Origins of Indian Psychology", p. 109
  • Of these desire (kama), and volition (kratu) have already been noted. These two attributes of manas relate to sankalpa as creative conceptualization in what is perhaps a surprising way, i.e. through the mechanism of karma and rebirth.
    • N. Ross Reat in: "The Origins of Indian Psychology", p. 244
File:'1' Sun Temple Konark Temple, Kama Love Orissa India February 2014.jpg
Kāma is celebrated in many Hindu temples, such as Khajuraho and the Konark Temples - There are lovely figures [in Khajuraho temples of India] the most beautiful females in numberless gaysome postures: Playing with ball, holding a mirror, writing a letter, waiting on the threshold, removing thorn from the foot, uncovering under intense Kama—passion,... - Manohar Laxman Varadpande
  • Kama is also learnt from the Kama Sutra (aphorisms on [[love) and from the practice of citizens.
    • Vatsyayana in: "The Kama Sutra of Vatsyayana: Translated from the Sanskrit. In seven parts, with preface, introduction, and concluding remarks", p. 18
  • When all three viz., Dharma, Artha, and Kama together, the former is better than the one which follows it, i.e., Dharma is better than Artha, and Artha is better than Kama. But Artha should be always practiced by the king, for the livelihood of men is to be obtained from it only. Again, Kama being the occupation of public women, they should prefer to the other two, and these are exceptions to the general rule.
    • Vatsyayana in: "The Kama Sutra of Vatsyayana: Translated from the Sanskrit. In seven parts, with preface, introduction, and concluding remarks", p. 18
  • Man, the period of whose life is one hundred years, should practice Dharma, Artha, and Kama at different times and in such a manner that they may harmonize, and not clash in any way. He should acquire learning in his childhood; in his youth and middle age he should attend to Artha and Kama, and in his old age he should perform Dharma, and thus seek to gain Moksha, that is, release from further transmigration.

God of Desire: Tales of Kamadeva in Sanskrit Story LiteratureEdit

 
When the Indians describe Kama in terms of sexual relations they do not mean to restrict the operation of this attitude to just those objects with which one can come into a sexual relationship, but are rather pointing to sexual relationships as typically involving instances of the taking of this kind of attitude.

Catherine Benton in: God of Desire: Tales of Kamadeva in Sanskrit Story Literature, SUNY Press, 1 June 2006

  • This god of desire is known as Kamadeva, literally the god (deva) of desire/passion (Kama). Just as passion forms the backdrop for good stories everywhere, the passion evoked by Kamadeva promises captivating and amusing drama, as well as an exploration of the myriad ethical and philosophical questions raised by desire.
    • In: p. 1
  • Kama dies in the central story involving his struggle with Shiva, but is resuscitated out of his own ashes so that life can continue. A world without Kamadeva is shown repeatedly to be barren, dry, leafless — indeed, unbearable.
    • In: p. 3
  • When the Indians describe Kama in terms of sexual relations they do not mean to restrict the operation of this attitude to just those objects with which one can come into a sexual relationship, but are rather pointing to sexual relationships as typically involving instances of the taking of this kind of attitude.
    • In: p. 5
  • According to Brahma, in the moment the male and female beheld one another, desire simply happened. Overwhelmed with the beauty of Sandhya, Brahma looked up to see Kama, fully formed and well armed, with his own beauty, five flower arrows, and a seductive gaze.
    • In: p. 26
  • Rather, after being struck and burning Kama, Shiva returns to the steadfast depth of his meditation. The message of these narratives is that asceticism is stronger than desire. The serious ascetic will defeat even the most powerful form of desire.
    • In: p. 47
  • That steadfast Kama, begotten of Vasudeva [Krsna] in Rukmini, that one who was known as the destroyer of Sambara, was the handsome Pradyumna who looked like Kama.
    • In: p. 67

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