From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Āstika-darśana literally means ‘philosophical systems believing in the authority of the Vedas’.

The philosophical systems known as ‘darśanas’ are generally divided into two groups :

  1. The āstika
  2. The nāstika

The word ‘āstika’ is usually interpreted as ‘believing in the authority of the God and Vedas,’ which accept the existence of God, the soul, heaven and other worlds, the doctrines of karma and rebirth and so on. Hence the well-known six systems of philosophy, the ‘ṣaḍ-darśanas’, are grouped under the term ‘āstika’.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore