The importance of Birth and why abortion is considered in Hinduism as Brahmahatya?
Why is giving birth important? In our entire Hindu tradition, giving birth is considered very highly sacred, very highly punya, the Dharmic activity which is enormous merit, why? Because, birth is not just making babies as we call it today. It’s not making babies just that. It is a giving chance for a jiva who is waiting, the process; this is not just single time birth. The Hindu tradition believes in the rebirth again and again, until one attains Moksha, but the Moksha is ultimate goal. But they have to travel the many birth to attain it, so each birth is important in the life of a jiva and this jiva, one jiva, some jiva with whom you have a Karmic connection, you have a connection like the son or daughter or something, you are giving an opportunity to that jiva to take birth into this physical universe and then manifest, and then you know travel ahead, to fulfil its Karmic journey, to travel much closer to Moksha .
So this birth is a very important thing, giving birth is considered a highly Dharmic activity for this reason, because you are helping jiva-s to continue that Karmic journey. So how can we, what are the circumstances when this is prevented? One is the abortion; when you voluntarily decide that you do not want the baby, the abortion is compared to Brahmahathya in the tradition, why? What is this Brahmahathya? We need to understand, what is this Brahmahathya? Today, you know Brahmins, caste, what is this Brahmnical thing you might think. Brahmahathya must be understood how the traditions defines Brahmana. Brahmana is, one of the Smritis, Manusmriti to be specific, says Brahmana is one who is friend to everybody. He is one from whom nobody has to fear because he will not hurt anybody either in thoughts speech or mind or actions, right? And Brahmana is one who is truthful, who is nonviolent, who is always controlled in his senses, who will never commit a crime, who will never commit any immoral things. So there is a whole lot of descriptions what a Brahmana is? Brahmana is one who has understood Brahma, he is the innocence personified. So when it is said, Brahmahathya is a huge Paapam, it only refers to the fact that slaying such an innocent person is a huge Paapam and the child unborn child is equally innocent in this sense and hence abortion is a huge Paapam and it is equated to Brahmahathya.