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Scriptural reference for a short lifespan in Hinduism?

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JR

New member
#1
I came across this interesting question in another site, since no one answered this question satisfactorily, am raising it here too.

Is there a scriptural reference in Hinduism that denotes/proclaims that human life is very short?

To be clear on what I am asking, I would like to use the original poster's own words:

" Majority of the world's religions share at least one thing in common, and that is the view that life is short--that humans are temporary, and that all you really have is time, and that chasing material wealth is a waste of your life.

Are there scriptural references in Hinduism that denote the same view as above?".


 

sangom

Well-known member
#2
I came across this interesting question in another site, since no one answered this question satisfactorily, am raising it here too.

Is there a scriptural reference in Hinduism that denotes/proclaims that human life is very short?

To be clear on what I am asking, I would like to use the original poster's own words:

" Majority of the world's religions share at least one thing in common, and that is the view that life is short--that humans are temporary, and that all you really have is time, and that chasing material wealth is a waste of your life.

Are there scriptural references in Hinduism that denote the same view as above?".
The rigvedic seers prayed for long life of 100 autumns, large (male) progeny who will be brave (suveerAH) and, of course, for wealth, cows and so on. In that respect, I feel that at least our earliest Veda did not consider life in this world as short or chasing material prosperity as bad. There could be isolated instances contrary to the above, in the vast ocean that is rigveda; scholarly members may come forward to correct my impression as above.

My impression is that it was the Upanishadic phase of the vedas which started this illusoriness of the worldly life, chasing material wealth as wasting your life, etc. May be, contemplation about human life might have revealed to the Upanishadic sages/seers/rishis, the impermanence of the worldly life and the human intellect's inability/impossibility of knowing about our past (before birth) or our future after death. Given this background, human existence will appear to be transcient and meaningless, so to say. The Upanishads, therefore, give us a mixed picture — following the veda and diverging from the veda. It is the commonly held belief that Adishankara gave his advaita philosophy as the gist of all the Upanishadic advancements in philosophical thoughts and so this was called as Vedanta (end of the Veda/s).
 

JR

New member
#3
Thanks, Sangom ji! Very interesting! Since no one answered with any scriptural note (in the other site that I infrequently visit) I told the OP that Sri Adi Sankara in his Bhaja Govindam talks of impermanence, transience of existence and futility of chasing wealth. Your reply brings a lot to contemplate!
 
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