In honor of their deceased mother, two Indian brothers set out on a 6,000-kilometer pilgrimage, from the river Ganges to the holy town of Haridwar in the Himalayas. Made up of seven chapters, Atman (a philosophical term for the soul in Hinduism) offers a powerful portrait of religious India. The film centers around the unmarried brother Jamana Lal, a profoundly religious Hindu whose legs are paralyzed. According to his religious beliefs, his handicap is a punishment from the gods for evils perpetrated in a previous life. The film follows him to the island of Sagar in the Ganges, where over a million people are attending a religious festival. It is here that Jamana meets a woman, Shanta, who joins the brothers on their journey. By way of Varanasi, the holiest city in India, they reach Haridwar, where the brothers make a flower sacrifice to their late mother. After an argument, the married brother returns home and Jamana Lal and Shanta proceed deeper into the Himalayas. High up in the mountains, near the source of the Ganges, they meet a monk who has been sitting on a large stone every day for 22 years. Ultimately, the couple travels back to Jamana Lal's native village, where he distributes the holy water he has taken from the Ganges among his fellow villagers.