Soul and Brahman:

In Hindu philosophy, the concepts of “Soul” and “Brahman” are fundamental aspects of understanding the nature of reality and the self. These concepts are primarily explored in Vedanta, one of the six classical schools of Hindu philosophy. 
Here’s an overview of these concepts:

1. Atman (Soul or Self):

Atman refers to the individual soul or self. It is considered eternal, unchanging, and distinct from the physical body. According to Vedanta, the Atman is not subject to birth and death; it is beyond the cycle of reincarnation (samsara). Realizing the true nature of the Atman is a central goal in Hindu philosophy.

2. Brahman:

Brahman is the ultimate, unchanging reality or cosmic spirit that underlies and unites the diversity of the universe. It is infinite, formless, and beyond attributes. Brahman is considered the source and essence of everything in existence. In the Upanishads, it is often described using the phrase “Sat-Chit-Ananda,” representing existence, consciousness, and bliss.

3. Atman-Brahman Relationship:

Vedanta teaches that the Atman and Brahman are ultimately one and the same. The individual soul (Atman) is considered identical to the supreme reality (Brahman). Realizing this oneness, known as “atma-brahma aikya,” is the goal of spiritual practice. The Chandogya Upanishad expresses this with the statement “Tat Tvam Asi” (That Thou Art), emphasizing the identity of the individual self with the ultimate reality.

4. Maya:

Maya is the concept of illusion or the veil of ignorance that prevents individuals from recognizing their true nature as Atman and the oneness with Brahman. The world of names and forms, including the physical body and the material world, is considered a product of Maya. Liberation (moksha) involves transcending Maya through knowledge and self-realization.

5. Self-Realization (Atma-Jnana):

Self-realization involves understanding the true nature of the self (Atman) and recognizing its identity with the ultimate reality (Brahman). This realization is achieved through spiritual practices such as meditation, contemplation, and study of sacred scriptures.

6. Bhakti (Devotion) and Karma (Action):

While the path of knowledge (Jnana Yoga) is one way to realize the unity of Atman and Brahman, other paths, such as the path of devotion (Bhakti Yoga) and the path of selfless action (Karma Yoga), are also emphasized in Hindu philosophy. These paths recognize different temperaments and approaches to spiritual realization.
The understanding of the soul (Atman) and Brahman is foundational to Hindu metaphysics and spiritual practice, providing a framework for contemplating the nature of existence, consciousness, and the ultimate reality. Different schools of Hindu philosophy may emphasize certain aspects of these concepts, but the core idea of the oneness of the individual soul with the supreme reality remains a common thread.