Hinduism is one of the major Indian religions and nearly 80% of the population follows this religion and its principles. This also, according to some, is the oldest religions that was ever established. Records found in the Indus Valley Civilization reflect that this religion has been in practice since 1000 BC. There is no known founder of this religion, in fact different mythical Gods and real-life sanyasis have preached it at different times in the history of the world.
The Bhagvad Geeta
The Hindu Vedas are the collection of vast knowledge and the practices of this faith and are reflective of what being Hindu really means. It is said that one only needs to read the Bhagvad Geeta in order to come to know the answers to all the otherwise eternally-intriguing questions related to life, karama, and death. Bhagvad Gita shows Prince Arjun going for war and talking to his guide and friend Lord Krishna. The book is filled with Lord Krishna's commentary on one's moral and ethical struggles throughout his/ her life. In fact, this book's most considerably most effective message of 'selfless actions' has inspired numerous people all around the world, one such example being Mahatma Gandhi, who always believed in 'giving'.
Hinduism has changed itself year by year majorly. 'Adya Shankaracharya' in 7th and early 8th century and 'Ramanuja' in 12th century AD, who were the great philosophers of that time, transformed many previously found and followed aspects of Hinduism. Shakaracharya contributed towards the development of the Advaita Vedanta.
Hinduism is not so easy to define and no single Hindu organization has authority to specify beliefs, or can establish any one official practice of this religion. As per Hinduism there are several Gods and Goddesses that are worshiped from region to region. These all are considered at par with each other and are worshiped for various individual mythological history of their own. All over world, many spiritual leaders as well as philosophers of Hinduism are found practicing and preaching it.
There are four principles of Hinduism and these are as follows:
- Duty means dharma
- Satisfaction means kama
- Material prosperity means artha
- Liberation means moksha
In ancient ages, there used to exist various schools of Hindu thoughts and philosophies, these being, Samkhya, Yoga, Nyaya, Vaisheshika,Purva-Mimamsa and Vedanta. But in the later years, the writing of Purana resulted in a radical transformation of the earlier known philosophies and thus, a new kind of Hinduism emerged. The Hindu lords started to replace all the previous beleif-figures; Budha was started to be thought as an avatar of Lord Vishnu. The concept of Brahman rose in stature with the help of more popular avatars like Rama and Krishna.
As per Hinduism it is believed that life and death is a cyclic phenomenon as well as the form of rebirth is depended on one's karma in his/her previous lives. Mainly there are three stages in life as per ashrama system- brahmachari (chaste student), grihastha (householder) and sanyasi (wandering ascetic). In India there are lots of sadhus found at devotional places like Kashi, Varanashi, Mathura and many more.
As stated earlier, Hinduism is a religion that cannot be exactly defined within definite limits of words and reasoning. In a statement given by the first Vice-President of India, Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, he said, "Hindusim is too broad to be categorized as just one school of faith; it is a union of various reasons and intuitions." He further stated that it was a kind of religion that could be experienced but not defined. At least, this is what most of ours' conclusions till date have led to. It is like a sphere with fuzzy edges.
Revival of Hinduism for a new world (Noe-Hinduism)
Vivekananda, in his writings, has referred to some particular passages from Bhagvad Geeta from time to time. These references were used to revitalize the importance of those messages and drive the people of modern India to think on those lines, which could ultimately simplify our lives by uplifting us from the triviality of our daily lives. He wanted the people to understand their own selves. Thus, his writings are sometimes called by some people as the reinterpretation of Bhagvad Geeta for a new India, although, it was not intended to be any kind of reinterpretation.
Today, the teachings of ancient Hinduism are taught all around the world in the form of spiritual meditation and practice. The people all over are seeking divine wisdom and awakening to a new better world, which only these teachings can make possible.
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