I am Shashi Gossain, we are going to discuss about most common and basic things of Hindu religion, what is Hinduism? Why Hindu religion is most tolerant? When was the term Hinduism first used?, and every such questions about Hindu religion.
What is Hinduism? What are Hindu beliefs?
Hinduism, not only a way of worship but way of living, a life style. Hinduism is the most tolerant religion and is as diverse as human society. The nations with followers of Hindu religion are- India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, United States of America, Myanmar, Thailand, United Kingdom, Canada, South Africa, Mauritius, and the Caribbean countries (West Indies).
Who was first Hindu?
Hinduism, 3rd largest religion in the world with over 1 billion followers. Hinduism, the oldest religion, dating back to 5,000 years, which has no single founders.
It was the area around the Indus valley where the Hindu religion is believed to originate from.
When was the term Hinduism first used?
The name “Hinduism” relating to the actual sect of religion was only coined in the early 19th century.
Hinduism is called Sanatana Dharma or eternal law. Hinduism gives complete freedom of practise, as it advocates that there are many paths leading to God, the eternal Truth.
What is the belief system in Hinduism?
There are many interpretations with vast scripts on every aspect of one’s life. However, I will try & simplify to the basic principles.
You can break them down to 7 core beliefs:
- Paramatma or Brahaman : One universal soul, the source of all reality.
- Atman: Immortal individual soul. When you die, your soul never dies.
- Karma: actions in your life good. Karma results in good afterlife.
- Moksha, which is the liberation from the cycle of life & death & suffering.
- Vedas, 4 sacred books of knowledge with verses in Sanskrit.
- Cyclical of time. There is no beginning & no end.
- Dharma : keep balance of nature
What text does Hinduism follow?
There are other important texts that have followed well after the Vedas, which all emphasise that Dharma must be followed for Society to function harmoniously.
- Upanishads: The books on philosophy & trying to find the answers to life’s difficult questions.
- Puranas: There are 18 puranas. These 18 books are like encyclopedias of Hindu beliefs.
- Ramayana: Literary meaning if Ramayana is “Ram ki Yatra”, is about 14 years exile of Rama, Sita & Laksman & his fight against the evil with the help of Hanumanji.
- Mahabharata: Longest sacred book in the world. Its 5 x longer than the Bible & written in poetic verses.
- Bhagwad Gita: these verses are uttered on a battlefield, where Lord Krishna reveals himself as a re-incarnation of Lord Vishnu & urges good to fight over evil. This is our Karma.
What is the goal of every Hindu?
In Hinduism, there are 4 goals a person should aim for to have a good life-
- Dharma: ethics & duties
- Artha: true prosperity
- Kama: pleasure of the body & mind
- Moksha: release of the cycle of life & death
What are the 4 stages of Hindu life?
According to Hindu texts life of every Hindu is divided into four stages. Each stage is called Aashram-
- Brahmcharya Aashram- Student.
- Grihasth Ashram – Householder.
- Vanprasth Aashram- Retired.
- Sanyas Aashram- Renunciate.
What is not allowed in Hinduism?
Hinduism should also avoid 6 temptations in order to attain Moksha:
- Bad Kama(Kukarma): lust & materialism
- Krodha: anger
- Lobha: greed
- Moha: attachment to physical goods, people & power
- Mada: pride
- Matsarya: jealousy
Who is trimurti in hinduism?
Hindus believe in one God, Parmatama, which has 3 helpers-
- Lord Brahma: The creator.
- Lord Vishnu: The Preserver.
- Lord Shiv: The destroyer.
There are further subdivisions, which we shall discuss later. But the universal belief is when there is imbalance in the world, or Adharma, god re-incarnates & transcends to earth in a human form to get rid of evil.
What is the most common form of Hindu worship?
Hindu practices include rituals like
- Puja: worship
- Japa : recitations
- Dhyana: meditation
- & annual pilgrimages (Teerth Yatra)
Which religion is most tolerant?
Hinduism gives complete freedom of practise, as it advocates that there are many paths leading to God, the eternal Truth. This makes Hinduism the most tolerant religion in the world. This is a brief overview of this fascinating religion, presented in a simplified way.