kāma or kām, (Sanskrit: काम, "self-indulgence; sensual gratification; pleasure; lust") — the passionate desire for all sensual and material pleasures such as for riches, property, honor, status, fame, children etc. and abnormal desire which includes drugs, alcoholic drinks, tobacco, or foods eaten only for taste. It is the principle of sickness and degradation in the Kali Yuga. kāma is regarded as one of the four purusharthas (goals of life), the others are artha (worldly status), dharma (duty) and moksha (liberation). It is also one of the arishadvarga (six passions of mind) or enemies of desire, the others being krodha (anger), lobha (greed), moha (delusion), mada (pride) and matsarya (jealousy).
kāma leads to krodha (anger) if it is unfulfilled. As the fire is covered by smoke, as a mirror by dust, and as an embryo by the amnion, similarly the Self-knowledge gets obscured by kāma. kāma is powerful. It carries a flowery bow equipped with five arrows, viz., mohana (fascination), stambhana (stupefaction), unmadana (maddening), soshana (emaciation) and tapana (inflaming).
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