In the Indian philosophy, the word ‘carvaka‘ means materialists. The carvakas hold that, perception is the only valid source of knowledge. They point out that all Non-perceptual or indirect sources of knowledge like inference, the testimony of other persons etc. are unreliable and often proved misleading. We should not therefore, believe in anything except what is immediately known through perception.

Perception reveals to us only the material world, composed of the four bhutas or elements of matter like air, fire, water, and earth, the existence of which we can directly know through the senses. There is no evidence that there is anything like an immaterial soul in man. Man too is made wholly of matter.

There is of course consciousness in man, but conciousness is the quality of the living body which is a product of matter. The element of matter combined together in a particular way give rise to the living body having conciousness. Conciousness ceases apparently with the body.


The survival of man in any form after death is therefore unproved. The existence of God also is a myth. God cannot be perceived. The world is created by the combination of the material elements and not by God.

The highest end of life, for a rational man, should therefore be the enjoyment of the greatest amount of pleasure in this life. We should try to get the best out of this life by enjoying is the best as we can and avoiding as far as possible the chances of pain.

Quote you can relate to:

The world says: “You have needs — satisfy them. You have as much right as the rich and the mighty. Don’t hesitate to satisfy your needs; indeed, expand your needs and demand more.” This is the worldly doctrine of today. And they believe that this is freedom. The result for the rich is isolation and suicide, for the poor, envy and murder.

Froyor Dostovyesky


Soni Sharma is a philosophy student, pursuing it from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. She is a very hard working and bright student. She serves Prahri Magazine by her written poems.

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