What do the Vedas say about fair treatment?


Upanishads preach – there is only one consciousness, not two. So hurting others mean hurting self. ‘Amritasya Putrah’ – “We are all begotten of the immortal.” This is how Hinduism introduces human beings. “Every individual soul is potentially divine”, proclaimed Swami Vivekananda.

Taittiriya Upanisad of Yajurveda.

Om saha navavatu, saha nau bhunaktu
Saha veeryam karvaavahai
Tejasvi naa vadhita mastu
maa vid vishaa va hai
Om shaantih, shaantih, shaantih.

Let us together be protected and let us together be nourished. Let us together join our mental forces in strength for the benefit of humanity. Let our efforts at learning be luminous and filled with joy, and endowed with the force of purpose. Let us never be poisoned with the seeds of hatred for anyone. Let there be peace and serenity in all the three universes. The mantra may also be used to invoke harmony among teacher and students.

Rig Veda

Ajyesthaaso Akanisthaasa Yete

Sam Bhraataro Vaavrudhuh Soubhagaya

– RigVeda, Mandala-5, Sukta-60, Mantra-5

‘No one is superior or inferior; all are brothers; all should strive for the interest of all and progress collectively’.

The RigVeda is the first of the four Vedas and is considered the essence of all knowledge – Jnana. In fact the Vedas emphasise the quintessential oneness of the entire creation.

Samaani va Aakootihi Samaanaa Hridayaanivah

Samaanamastu vo Mano Yathaa Vah Susahaasati

– RigVeda, Mandala-10, Sukta-191, Mantra-4

“Let there be oneness in your resolutions, hearts and minds; let the determination to live with mutual cooperation be firm in you all”.

Swami Vivekananda

“All differences in this world are of degree, and not of kind, because oneness is the secret of everything.”

“If there is inequality in nature, still there must be equal chance for all — or if greater for some and for some less — the weaker should be given more chance than the strong.”

B.R. Ambedkar

Three famous ideals that inspired the French Revolution i.e. Liberty, Equality and Fraternity have subsequently found place in almost all the democratic constitutions of the world including that of Bharat. Liberty and Equality are the ideals that can be achieved through constitutional means. But for achieving Fraternity we need something more than constitutional means.

“What does Fraternity mean?” Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, the Architect of Bharat’s Constitution questioned, and went on to explain that “Fraternity means a sense of common brotherhood of all Indians – of Indians being one people. It is this principle that gives unity and solidarity to social life.”


“To save a family, abandon a man; to save the village, abandon a family; to save the country, abandon a village; to save the soul, abandon the earth.” — Mahabharata.

Golden Rule

Golden rule says – “Don’t do unto others what you don’t want others to do unto you.”

Here is one quote from a 5000 years old book Mahabharata –

तस्माद्धर्मप्रधानेन भवितव्यं यतात्मना । तथा च सर्वभूतेषु वर्तितव्यं यथात्मनि ॥

tasmād dharma-pradhānéna bhavitavyam yatātmanā |

tathā cha sarva-bhūtéṣhu vartitavyam yathātmani ||

[Mahābhārata Shānti-Parva 167:9]

Hence, by self-control and by making dharma (right conduct) your main focus, treat others as you treat yourself.

And this is known as Golden Rule and common to all civilizations. – Golden Rule – Wikipedia

The Golden Rule or law of reciprocity is the principle of treating others as one would wish to be treated oneself. It is a maxim of altruism seen in many human religions and human cultures.



Author:Muktipada Behera, Studied Vedanta

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