There are two notions that are intimately involved in this topic – ‘justice’ as seen from the Eastern perspective: 1) Dharma, and 2) Ishvara or the creating and controlling aspect of God or the absolute reality.
The notion of dharma is paramount in the Eastern philosophico-religious traditions and is used in many combinations of words. The main meaning is ‘law’ or ‘order’ as it exists in the universe. Rather than man-made, it is a divine ordinance or, alternately, a cosmological law that maintains all things in equilibrium. As such, it cannot be far distant from the Western idea of justice (‘law and order’ and all its derivations and conditionings). It is a universal law from which nothing can deviate (literally, ‘what holds together’), whether in the social, the individual, or the moral realms.
The four important divisions or goals of life in the Indian tradition are artha (re material possessions), kāma (pleasure and love), dharma (religious and moral duties), and mokṣa (spiritual release or delivery). Some of the Dharmaṣāstras – Books of the Law – are attributed to mythological personages, such as Manu, ‘forefather of man’, and are filled with religious, social, and ritual prescriptions.
An important treatise, encyclopedic in its coverage, is the ‘Kauṭiliya Arthaṣāstra’, from the 4th Cent. BC.
As far as the individual is concerned, the particular application of the law (dharma) is called ‘sva-dharma’, for s/he cannot escape it – in this or in another life (‘reincarnation’). There are different ways to look at it: merits and demerits, intimately tied up with (the law of) karma; duties pertaining to one’s station in life: student, householder, retiree, and, finally, renunciant or liberated one (mukti) – released from all duties and tasks and dedicated exclusively to contemplation of the divine or ultimate reality (traditionally referred to as ‘forest-dweller’).
The Indian tradition is prodigious in its elaboration and codification of all the branches of the sciences and of the arts: music, dance, philosophy, linguistics, mathematics, geography, rituals, types of meditation, moral laws, etc.