Scriptures have given to us the concept of Purushartha Chatushtaya, the four objectives for which every human being should strive, make efforts and try to attain. The highest and the ultimate objective, the supreme goal of life is Self-realisation, God-experience, in which one has to attain liberation.
All the material things and wealth that a man might have gathered will have to be left behind at the time of death. All these are relevant or useful only so long as one is a traveller on this earth plane in a human body form. But their usefulness is not permanent or eternal. At the end of life, they are totally useless. Anything here has no ultimate value or meaning. You have come here and you will have to go one day. Your stay on this earth plane is temporary, you do not belong to it. You really belong to super mundane plane of spiritual existence. That is the ultimate and the innermost reality of your being.
So our Parama Purushartha, the ultimate objective is the experience of that plane. It is also known as Moksha Samrajya Prapti, attaining the Kingdom of Liberation. You have to attain it in this very life itself. Your thoughts, actions and your relation to other beings on this earth plane can be a help and can become an effective process of bringing you to that great goal, provided your life is clean and pure, noble and sublime, so that only good comes to others from your life, no one is harmed, no pain or injury is inflicted upon others, you are always a source of happiness to others.
Such a life by itself becomes partially a process to attain that supreme goal. When you engage yourself in specific scientific methods and practices, such a life becomes a great helping factor, a proper framework and environment. In such a life, you can follow the other scientific methods and practices that are specifically meant to give you the supreme experience, illumination or God-experience.
Our ancient sages have given the fourfold objectives of dharma, artha, kama, moksha – that is, righteous living, earning, gratification of desires and liberation.
The first objective is righteous, ethical way of life in thought, feeling and action. If your life is based upon the right foundation, it will automatically go in the right direction and become effective in achieving the goal. So the first and foremost requirement is knowledge. Obtain the necessary knowledge about dharmic, moral and ethical norms. Don’t start your life in ignorance and make a mess of it…. Have a clear-cut idea, right at the very beginning about the great goal, ethical idealism, concept of moral living, and the heritage of human culture.
The concept of moral living is a part and parcel of all religions of the world. What is unique about the Vedic Dharma is that our ancient seers and sages, our law-givers wove it in the very fabric of our social life also. They have interwoven it as a part and parcel of our social life-style in such a manner that automatically these four objectives came into the range of our normal living. Also, utmost emphasis is made again and again upon the ethical basis of life. Nowhere, in no other religion has so much been said on this as it has been said in India.