Who Is a Hindu & How Do You Define Hinduism?

Discussion in 'General discussion' started by garry420, Feb 24, 2015.

  1. garry420

    garry420 Well-Known Member

    A person is called muslim if he is following five things....and believe in prophet muhamad... a person is called christian...if believes that Jesus Christ is son of god and follows him... a person is called jews if believes in Prophet Moses... like wise buddhist ,Sikh etc. but question is who is Hindu...??? how to define and say a person is Hindu....??? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- -Every religion are like JUGNU (The glowing fly) which glows for sometime later disappears. Sanathan Dharma means Bhagwan vacha: - Words of God which were present before creation & would be present after destruction. Hindus are the those who accepts Prophet, moses, Messengers, Jews, Sikhs, buddhist everybody because scriptures says we are not this body but the soul, we need to resepect the presence of soul which is part & parcel of God & not the outer material covering saying he is a muslim or a chrisitian etc because after death the body dies & the part of God/soul remains. ("I am in everyone’s heart as the Supersoul. As soon as one desires to worship some demigod, I make his faith steady so that he can devote himself to that particular deity." Gita 7.21) Hindusim/Sanatan Dharma is the ocean where the rivers like buddhism, jainism, islam, christinity etc meets. ("Those who are devotees of other gods and who worship them with faith actually worship only Me, O son of Kunti, but they do so in a wrong way." GITA 9.23) Sanatan means Eternal & Dharma means an art of living.
    Who is Sanatan?

    All Jiva Tattvaas are considered as Sanatan/Eternal being, which are from Sri Brahmaji to all his creation who got a life, animals, birds, fishm humans & so every religion are directly or indirectly considered as Sanatan Dharma

    What is Dharma?

    Dharma of birds is to fly, dharma of river is to flow, dharma of fish is to swim, dharma of sun is to spread light, dharma of humans is to love God. Sometimes the river water turns to ice which is called as temperory change in his real nature/Dharma but after few days it comes back to its original nature which is his real dharma. Sameway forming of diffrent religions are considered as a Temperory change in our society & the original dharma is Being sanata/eternal so like the water comes to its original state & so does every eternal being would come to its original state.

    What is the Goal of following Dharma?

    Goal of the River is to meet the ocean, Goal of human/soul is to meet the super Soul. Refrence/Proof of diffrent religion/community mentioned in Vedic text based on Sanatan teachings. Bhavisha puran got prophencies of Islam Shrimad Bhagwatam got Prophencies of Buddhism & Jainism (Lord Rishbdev & the King named ARHANT) Manu Scripts Got refrence of Christinity. These scripts are not written after the event took place but many years before the event took place. Every acharya/saintly man who changed the way of living depending on the time & situation is called religion, who did it for their community but not for every individual of this planet, such community thinks of just their self but not others.

    Who is God?

    The one who thinks about many universes and not just the community, The 1 who is present in everybody The one who sees everybody as the atma. So if anybody wants to hear the Gods words listen to bhagwat vani, sri Bhagawan Uvacha, bhagwan/god, Uvacha/words. Like we read in Gita, bhagwatam, purans etc. The words which gives the knowledge of The God. The one which remains for just few kal (time) is called religion but the one which stays forever is bhagwat vani- the gods words which is Sanatan/eternal truth. He says this is aham wani means the words of every individual on this planetsl this is my language aham. This is not diffrent for animals, birds, humans, it is our vani, language in everybody is given by King Ishkwaku & he received from The Sun God vivashwan, Lord Rama Incarnated in Suryanshi dynaasty whose root was King Ishwaaku & this knowledge extent for millions of years after Tretayuga & just 5114 years back in Dwaparyuga the same words are said by God Krishna to Arjuna in the Battle Feild. - Hare Krishna (By a Good Friend)
  2. Birgitta

    Birgitta New Member

    What I love with hinduism is that you are free in that way that you yourself define in what way you can get in contact with The Divine .
    It's between you and your Creator .
    Infact I love all religions. There is something good in every religion .
    But when you have to buy the whole package and agree with everything you kind of feel tense .
    In islam you have to pray in this and that way.... You have to do this and that :(
    In christianity you have to believe "that noone comes to the father but only through Jesus"...

    I have been thinking about conversion from christianity to the religion of ; Bahai , Islam , Sikh , you name it .
    BUT what I love with hinduism is that you don't have to convert .
    You are free to call yourself what ever you like . You don't have to formally convert :)
  3. arjun_pandav

    arjun_pandav New Member Staff Member

    Your observations are correct indeed. Hinduism provides tools for human to choose his path and attain peace and enlightenment using tools like Yoga, Sanayas, Bhakti etc rather than putting labels.
  4. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member Staff Member

    There are about as many ways to define who is a Hindu as there are numbers of Hindus. It's a lot, and it gets debated sometimes. Personally, I only see it as each individuals point of view, and all are correct for the individual.

    I personally don't see it in belief as much as in action. So for me, what defines a Hindu is his/her behaviour. Yes, there is belief, but if one doesn't live up to that belief, is it really a belief? A simple example is ahimsa tied to vegetarianism. Ahimsa is the belief and the corresponding action is vegetarianism.

    So if a person says "I'm a Hindu" and then goes out and does all these things that aren't corresponding to Hindu belief, are they still a Hindu? Perhaps by their own definition, but by observers or the general community?
  5. arjun_pandav

    arjun_pandav New Member Staff Member

    What I understand is Hindus does not define whether somebody is Hindu or not. Such words like Hindu is not even used anywhere. The Hinduism explains the truths and provides practical tools like Yoga, Sanayas, Janana to achieve the spiritual and material goals. Such guidelines apply to all.
  6. Senthil

    Senthil Active Member Staff Member

    Yes I agree. I have never found any definition of Hinduism within Hinduism itself. At least I can't remember anything.

    Even the origin of the term 'Hindu' is up for debate, as seen here. http://www.b-i-f.com/hindu.pdf

    It seems that the idea that it was a coined Persian word for the people living east of the Indus may just well be a theory, and not that good of one, just like AIT.
  7. Ignorant

    Ignorant New Member

    Essentials of Hindutva - Veer Savarkar
    Who is a Hindu ?

    The words Hindutva and Hinduism both of them being derived from the word Hindu, must necessarily be understood to refer to the whole of the Hindu people. Any definition of Hinduism that leaves out any important section of our people and forces them either to play false to their convictions or to go outside the pale of Hindutva stands self-condemned. Hinduism means the system of religious beliefs found common amongst the Hindu people. And the only way to find out what those religious beliefs of the Hindus are, i. e., what constitutes Hinduism, you must first define a Hindu. But forgetting this chief implication of the word, Hinduism which clearly presupposes an independent conception of a Hindu many people go about to determine the essentials of Hinduism and finding none so satisfactory as to include, without overlapping all our Hindu communities, come to the desperate conclusion—which does not satisfy them either —that therefore those communities are not Hindus at all; not because the definition they had framed is open to the fault of exclusion but because those communities do not subject themselves to the required tenets which these gentlemen have thought it fit to lable as 'Hinduism'. This way of answering the question 'who is a Hindu' is really prepostereus and has given rise to so much of bitterness amongst some of our brethren of Avaidik school of thought, the Sikh, the Jain, the Devsamaji and even our patriotic and progressive Aryasamajis.

    'Who is a Hindu ?' —he who is subject to the tenets of Hinduism. Very well. What is Hinduism ?— those tenets to which the Hindus are subjected. This is very nearly arguing in a circle and can never lead to a satisfactory solution. Many of our friends who have been on this wrong track have come back to tell us ' there are no such people as Hindus at all!' If some Indian, as gifted as that Englishman who first coined the word Hinduism, coins a parallel word 'Englishism' and proceeds to find out the underlying unity of beliefs amongst the English people, gets disgusted with thousands of sects and societies from Jews to the Jacobins, from Trinity to Utility, and comes out to announce that ' there are no such people as the English at all,' he would not make himself more ridiculous than those who declare in cold print' there is nothing as a Hindu people.' Any one who wants to see what a confusion of thought prevails on the point and how the failure to analyse separately the two terms Hindutva and Hinduism renders that confusion worst confounded may do well to go through the booklet ' Essentials of Hinduism ' published by the enterprising ' Natesan and Co.'

    Hinduism means the ' ism ' of the Hindu; and as the word Hindu has been derived from the word Sindhu, the Indus, meaning primarily all the people who reside in the land that extends from Sindhu to Sindhu, Hinduism must necessarily mean the religion or the religions that are peculiar and native to this land and these people. If we are unable to reduce the different tenets and beliefs to a single system of religion then the only way would be to cease to maintain that Hinduism is a system and to say that it is a set of systems consistent with, or if you like, contradictory or even conflicting with, each other. But in no case can you advance this your failure to determine the meaning of Hinduism as a ground to doubt the existence of the Hindu nation itself, or worse still to commit a sacrilege in hurting the feelings of our Avaidik brethren and Vaidik Hindu brethren alike, by relegating any of them to the Non-Hindu pale.
    The limits of this essay do not permit us to determine the nature or the essentials of Hinduism or to try to discuss it at any great length. As we have shown above the enquiry into what is Hinduism can only begin after the question ' who is a Hindu' ? is rightly answered determining the essentials of Hindutva ; and as it is only with these essentials of Hindutva, which enable us to know who is a Hindu, that this our present enquiry is concerned, the discussion of Hinduism falls necessarily outside of our scope. We have to take cognizance of it only so far as it trespasses on the field of our special charge. Hinduism is a word that properly speaking should be applied to all the religious beliefs that the different communities of the Hindu people hold. But it is generally applied to that system of religion which the majority of the Hindu people follow. It is natural that a religion or a country or community should derive its name from the characteristic feature which is common to an overwhelming majority that constitutes or contributes to it.

    It is also convenient for easy reference or parlance. But a convenient term that is not only delusive but harmful and positively misleading should not any longer be allowed to blind our judgement. The majority of the Hindus subscribes to that system of religion which could fitly be described by the attribute that constitutes its special feature, as told by Shruti. Smriti and Puranas or Sanatan Dharma. They would not object if it even be called Vaidik Dharma. But besides these there are other Hindus who reject either partly or wholly, the authority—some of the Puranas, some of the Smritis and some of the Shrutis themselves. But if you identify the religion of the Hindus with the religion of the majority only and call it orthodox Hinduism, then the different heterodox communities being Hindus themselves rightly resent this usurpation of Hindutva by the majority as well as their unjustifiable exclusion. The religion of the minorities also requires a name. But if you call the so-called orthodox religion alone as Hinduism then naturally it follows that the religion of the so-called heterodox is not Hinduism.

    The next most fatal step being that, therefore, those sections are not Hindus at all!! But this inference seems as staggering even to those who had unwillingly given whole-hearted support to the premises which have made it logically inevitable that while hating to own it they hardly know to avoid arriving at it. And thus we find that while millions of our Sikhs, Jains, Lingayats, several Samajis and others would deeply resent to be told that they—whose fathers' fathers up to the tenth generation had the blood of Hindus in their veins—had suddenly ceased to be Hindu!—yet a section amongst them takes it most emphatically for granted that they had been faced with a choice that either they should consent to be a party to those customs and beliefs which they had in their puritanic or progressive zeal rejected as superstitions, or they should cease to belong to that race to which their forefathers belonged.

    All this bitterness is mostly due to the wrong use of the word, Hinduism, to denote the religion of the majority only. Either the word should be restored to its proper significance to denote the religions of all Hindus or if you fail to do that it should be dropped altogether. The religion of the majority of the Hindus could be best denoted by the ancient accepted appellation, the Sanatan dharma or the Shruti-smriti-puranokta Dharma or the Vaidik Dharma; while the religion of the remaining Hindus would continue to be denoted by their respective and accepted names Sikha Dharma or Arya Dharma or Jain Dharma or Buddha Dharma. Whenever the necessity of denoting these Dharmas as a whole arises then alone we may be justified in denoting them by the generic term Hindu Dharma or Hinduism. Thus there would be no loss either in clearness, or in conciseness but on the other hand a gain both in precision and unambiguity which by removing the cause of suspicion in our minor communities and resentment in the major one would once more unite us all Hindus under our ancient banner representing a common race and a common civilization.

    The earliest records that we have got of the religious beliefs of any Indian community—not to speak of mankind itself—are the Vedas. The Vedic nation of the Saptasindhus was sub-divided into many a tribe and class. But although the majority then held a faith that we for simplicity call Vedic religion, yet it was not contributed to by an important minority of the Sindhus themselves. The Panees, the Dasas, the Vratyas and many others from time to time seem to have either seceded from or never belonged to the orthodox church and yet racially and nationally they were conscious of being a people by themselves. There was such a thing as Vedic religion, but it could not even be idenitfied with Sindhu Dharma; for the latter term, had it been coined, would have naturally meant the set of religions prevailing in Saptasindhu, othodox as well as heterodox. By a process of elimination and assimilation the race of the Sindhus at last grew into the race of Hindus, and the land of the Sindhus i.e. Sindhustan, into the land of the Hindus i. e- Hindusthan. While their orthodox and the heterodox schools of religions have,—having tested much, dared much and known much,—having subjected to the most searching examination possible till then, all that lay between the grandest and the tiniest, from the atom to the Atman—from the Paramanu to the Parabrahma,—having sounded the deepest secrets of thoughts and having soared to the highest altitudes of ecstasy,— given birth to a synthesis that sympathises with all aspirants towards truth from the monist to the atheist. Truth was its goal, realization its method. It is neither Vedic nor non-Vedic, it is both. It is the veritable science of religion applied.

  8. Ignorant

    Ignorant New Member

    This is Hindu dharma—the conclusion of the conclusions arrived at by harmonising the detailed experience of all the schools of religious thought-Vaidik, Sanatani, Jain, Baudda, Sikha or Devasamaji. Each one and every one of those systems or sects which are the direct descendants and developments of the religious beliefs Vaidik and non-Vaidik that obtained in the land of the Saptasindhus or in the other unrecorded communities in other parts of India in the Vedic period, belongs to and is an integral part of Hindudharma.

    Therefore the Vaidik or the Sanatan Dharma itself is merely a sect of Hinduism or Hindu Dharma, however overwhelming be the majority that contributes to its tenets. It was a definition of this Sanatan Dharma which the late Lokamanya Tilak framed in the famous verse.
    Belief in the Vedas, many means, no strict rule for worship-these are the features of the Hindu religion.
    In a learned article that he had contributed to the Chitramayajagat which bears the mark of his deep erudition and insight Lokmanya in an attempt to develop this more or less negative definition into a positive one, had clearly suggested that he had an eye not on Hindutva as such but only on what was popularly called Hindudharma, and had also admitted that it could hardly include in its sweep the Aryasamajis and other sects which nevertheless are racially and nationally Hindus of Hindus. That definition, excellent so far as it goes, is in fact not a definition of Hindudharma, much less of Hindutva but of Sanatan Dharma—the Shruti-Smriti-puranokta sect, which being the most popular of all sects of Hindu Dharma was naturally but loosely mistaken for Hindu Dharma itself.
    Thus Hindu Dharma being etymologically as well as actually and in its religious aspects only, (for Dharma is not merely religion) the religion of the Hindus, it necessarily partakes of all the essentials that characterise a Hindu. We have found that the first important essential qualification of a Hindu is that to him the land that extends from Sindhu to Sindhu is the Fatherland, (Pitribhu) the Motherland (Matribhu) the land of his patriarchs and forefathers. The system or set of religions which we call Hindu Dharma—Vaidik and Non-Vaidik—is as truly the offspring of this soil as the men whose thoughts they are or who 'saw' the Truth revealed in them. To Hindu Dharma with all its sects and systems this land, Sindhusthan, is the land of its revelation, the land of its birth on this human plane. As the Ganges, though flowing from the lotus feet of Vishnu himself, is even to the most orthodox devotee and mystic so far as human plane is concerned the daughter of the Himalayas, even so, this land is the birth-place—the Matribhu (motherland) and the Pitribhu (fatherland)—of that Tatvajnana ( philosophy) which in its religious aspect is signified as Hindu Dharma. The second most important essential of Hindutva is that a Hindu is a descendant of Hindu parents, claims to have the blood of the ancient Sindhu and the race that sprang from them in his veins. This also is true of the different schools of religion of the Hindus; for they too being either founded by or revealed to the Hindu sages, and seers are the moral and cultural and spiritual descendants and development of the Thought of Saptasindhus through the process of assimilation and elimination, as we are of their seed. Not only is Hindu Dharma the growth of the natural environments and of the thought of the Indus, but also of the Sanskriti or culture of the Hindus. The environmental frames in which its scenes, whether of the Vaidik period or of Bauddha, Jain or any extremely modern ones of Chaitanya, Chakradhar, Basava, Nanak, Dayananda or Raja Rammohan, are set, the technical terms and the language that furnished expression to its highest revelation and ecstasies, its mythology and its philosophy, the conceptions it controverted and the conceptions it adopted, have the indelible stamp of Hindu culture, of Hindu Sanskriti, impressed upon them. Hindu Dharma of all shades and schools, lives and grows and has its being in the atmosphere of Hindu culture, and the Dharma of a Hindu being so completely identified with the land of the Hindus, this land to him is not only a Pitribhu but a Punyabhu, not only a fatherland but a holyland.

    Yes, this Bharatbhumi. this Sindusthan, this land of ours that stretches from Sindhu to Sindhu is our Punyabhumi, for it was in this land that the Founders of our faith and the Seers to whom 'Veda' the Knowledge was revealed, from Vaidik seers to Dayananda, from Jina to Mahavir, from Buddha to Nagasen, from Nanak to Govind, from Banda to Basava, from Chakradhar to Chaitanya, from Ramdas to Rammohan, our Gurus and Godmen were born and bred. The very dust of its paths echoes the footfalls of our Prophets and Gurus. Sacred are its rivers, hallowed its groves, for it was either on their moonlit ghats or under their eventide long shadows, that the deepest problems of life, of man, soul and God, of Brahma and Maya, were debated and discussed by a Buddha or a Shankar. Ah! every hill and dell is instinct with memories of a Kapil or a Vyas. Shankar or Ramdas. Here Bhagirath rules, there Kurukshetra lies. Here Ramchandra made his first halt of an exile, there Janaki saw the golden deer and fondly pressed her lover to kill it. Here the divine Cowherd played on his flute that made every heart in Gokul dance in harmony as if in a hypnotized sleep. Here is Bodhi Vriksha, here the deer-park, here Mahaveer entered Nirvana. Here stood crowds of worshippers amongst whom Nanak sat and sang the Arati 'the sun & the moon are the lights in the plate of the sky!' Here Gopichand the king look on vows of Gopichand the Jogi and with a bowl in his hand knocked at his sister's door for a handful of alms! Here the son of Bandabahadur was hacked to pieces before the eyes of his father and the young bleeding heart of the son thrust in the father's mouth for the fault of dying as a Hindu! Every stone here has a story of martyrdom to tell! Every inch of thy soil, O Mother! has been a sacrificial ground! Not only 'where the Krishnasar is found' but from Kasmir to Sinhar it is ' Land of sacrifice,' sanctified with a Jnana Yajna or an Atmaajna (self-sacrifice). So to every Hindu, from the Santal to the Sadhu this Bharata bhumi this Sindhusthan is at once a Pitribhu and a Punyabhu—fatherland and a holy land.

    That is why in the case of some of our Mohammedan or Christian countrymen who had originally been forcibly converted to a non-Hindu religion and who consequently have inherited along with Hindus, a common Fatherland and a greater part of the wealth of a common culture—language, law, customs, folklore and history—are not and cannot be recognized as Hindus. For though Hindusthan to them is Fatherland as to any other Hindu yet it is not to them a Holyland too. Their holyland is far off in Arabia or Palestine. Their mythology and Godmen, ideas and heroes are not the children of this soil. Consequently their names and their outlook smack of a foreign origin. Their love is divided. Nay, if some of them be really believing what they profess to do, then there can be no choice—they must, to a man, set their Holy-land above their Fatherland in their love and allegiance. That is but natural. We are not condemning nor are we lamenting.

    We are simply telling facts as they stand. We have tried to determine the essentials of Hindutva and in doing so we have discovered that the Bohras and such other Mohammedan or Christian communities possess all the essential qualifications of Hindutva but one and that is that they do not look upon India as their Holyland.

    It is not a question of embracing any doctrine propounding any new theory of the interpretation of God, Soul and Man, for we honestly believe that the Hindu Thought—we are not speaking of any religion which is dogma—has exhausted the very possibilities of human speculation as to the nature of the Unknown—if not the Unknowable, or the nature of the relation between that and thou. Are you a monist—a monotheist—a pantheist —an atheist—an agnostic ? Here is ample room, O soul ! whatever thou art, to love and grow to thy fullest height and satisfaction in this Temple of temples, that stands on no personal foundation but on the broad and deep and strong foundation of Truth. Why goest then to fill thy little pitcher to wells far off, when thou standest on the banks of the crystal-streamed Ganges herself ? Does not the blood in your veins, O brother, of our common forefathers cry aloud with the recollections of the dear old scenes and ties from which they were so cruelly snatched away at the point of the sword? Then come ye back to the fold of your brothers and sisters who with arms extended are standing at the open gate to welcome you—their long lost kith and kin. Where can you find more freedom of worship than in this land where a Charvak could preach atheism from the steps of the temple of Mahakal -more freedom of social organisation than in the Hindu society where from the Patnas of Orissa to the Pandits of Benares, from the Santalas to the Sadhus, each can develop a distinct social type of polity or organize a new one ? Verily whatever, could be found in the world is found here too. And if anything is not found here it could be found nowhere.

    Ye, who by race, by blood, by culture, by nationality possess almost all the essentials of Hindutva and had been forcibly snatched out of our ancestral home by the hand of violence—ye, have only to render wholehearted love to our common Mother and recognize her not only as Fatherland (Pitribhu) but even as a Holyland (punyabhu); and ye would be most welcome to the Hindu fold.
  9. Ignorant

    Ignorant New Member

    This is a choice which our countrymen and our old kith and kin, the Bohras, Khojas, Memons and other Mohammedan and Christian communities are free to make —a choice again which must be a choice of love. But as long as they are not minded thus, so long they cannot be recognized as Hindus. We are, it must be remembered, trying to analyse and determine the essentials of Hindutva as that word is actually understood to signify and would not be justified in straining it in its application to suit any pre-conceived notions or party convenience.

    A Hindu, therefore, to sum up the conclusions arrived at, is he who looks upon the land that extends from Sindu to Sindu-from the Indus to the Seas,-as the land of his forefathers —his Fatherland (Pitribhu), who inherits the blood of that race whose first discernible source could be traced to the Vedic Saptasindhus and which on its onward march, assimilating much that was incorporated and ennobling much that was assimilated, has come to be known as the Hindu people, who has inherited and claims as his own the culture of that race as expressed chiefly in their common classical language Sanskrit and represented by a common history, a common literature, art and architecture, law and jurisprudence, rites and rituals, ceremonies and sacraments, fairs and festivals; and who above all, addresses this land, this Sindhusthan as his Holyland (Punyabhu), as the land of his prophets and seers, of his godmen and gurus, the land of piety and pilgrimage. These are the essentials of Hindutva—a common nation (Rashtra) a common race (Jati) and a common civilization (Sanskriti). All these essentials could best be summed up by stating in brief that he is a Hindu to whom Sindhusthan is not only a Pitribhu but also a Punyabhu. For the first two essentials of Hindutva—nation and Jati—are clearly denoted and connoted by the word Pitrubhu while the third essential of Sanskriti is. pre-eminently implied by the word Punyabhu, as it is precisely Sanskriti including sanskaras i. e. rites and rituals, ceremonies and sacraments, that makes a land a Holyland. To make the definition more handy, we may be allowed to compress it in a couplet —

    A Sindu Sindhu paryanta, Yasya Bharatbhumika
    Pitribhuh Punyabhushchaiva sa vai Hinduriti smritah
    source: I/N
  10. Hindu

    Hindu Member Staff Member

    Who is a Hindu

    A Hindu is one that believes in one God who incarnates, as and when He feelsfit, in the shape and form He wants. God has incarnated in many forms as Lord Rama , Lord Shiva , Lord Brahma( in His form as The Creator) Lord Krishna and others that were in existence for shorter periods.

    Certain incarnations of God have come under criticism from those who have theinbuilt mind concept that God should only be in a certain form. This istotally refuted by Hinduism. Our belief is that God has the infinite capacity and will take forms as and when He so feels. A simple little human has no right to put limitations on God.

    Creation and destruction of the universeGod creates, sustains and destroys everything , when time comes. The Creatorform of God is known as Brahma. He breaths out the universe as stated in the Holy book Gita. This is the same as Big Bang Theory only in a different language. Saying it in English does not make our eternal theory obsolete.

    Upon creation , the form of Vishnu takes over as the maintainer of the universe . He is the prime enjoyer of the creation and its profound complex beauty and wonders. At the end of the whole creation it is all destroyed or breathed back again, as stated in the Holy book Gita. This is no differentfrom the Back Hole as found recently by the scientists. The Vedas clearlystate that everything comes from nothing and goes back to nothing . The is a clear indication of Hinduism's claim of understanding the "Zero" long before any other cultures.

    The whole process from creation to destruction is divided into 4 parts called yugas : Sat Yug, Treta Yug, Dwapar Yug and the Yug of Kali. The universe is now in the era of darkness ( kali Yug ), although the destruction is a long way to go ,the whole process starts all over again after destruction. The progression from the first yug to the last counted as one day of Bhraman - The Supreme Lord, The creation has 427,000 years to go before the destruction , upon which the new cycle will begin.

    Names, forms and deities
    Many names and forms are given to each incarnation and different powers ofGod, with the love and affection by each individual devotee. Deities are apart of our worship and whilst a miracle should never be a prerequisite for a true believer , the Milk Miracle by The supreme Graceof Lord Ganesh is a
    living proof of its powers .No Hindu will allow this Miracle to be forgotten.

    Deities are made full use of in Hinduism for the purpose of concentration. Weare not apologists for the same.This has been highly maligned by the Islamand Christian beliefs. They fail to see that they themselves have always useddeities. The Islamics use the Kabaa ( a black stone)and the Christians thestatues of Christ , Mary and the use of Cross .

    That God created man in His own image (Christianbelief) comes from theHindus deities being lovingly sculpturedin beautiful human forms ages ago before Christ was born.

    Dharma, God and soul - Eternal
    Hinduism, Our Dharma is eternal, so is God and all the souls. It is ourconviction that body dies but not the soul. At death time the soul simplypasses out to take another body , be it a human or any other living thing.This unfortunately, is so frightening to some other beliefs that they turn atotally blind eye and bury their ostrich heads in sand over this issue. Nextbirth is dependent upon the life style one lived in the last one. Known toall, God is always kind will grant unto the devotee what he asks for. Ourmind set at death will lead us to the next birth. If food was the passionthan the next birth would be such as to facilitate the fulfillment of the
    desires. Needless to say a maggot swimming in swill would never desire it anyother way because in its physical form its requirements are totallyfulfilled.

    It has also to be remembered that the nature of desire for worldly things(maya) will lead to desire for more. It is indeed a vicious cycle. The desirefor nature will lead to moksha (salvation) a permanent state of bliss andbeing in service of the Lord Himself, thus the attainment of the truedestination of soul. Paradise is the ultimate goal of other beliefs wherepleasures that have not been fulfilled during lifetime can be enjoyed. Thisis an extremeform of self gratification. Hindus ultimate aim is to be in selfless service of God . Is there a higher , deeper and morepure philosophy on earth .

    The world is at a loss for turning a blind eye to the tenets of Hinduism butit has to be understood that every human has a capacity of understanding andthey will follow what their mental and spiritual levels lead them towards.

    Many Paths and one GodThe old scriptures are a guide to salvation and an individual can steadilymake his way back to God in the speed and path selected. Each soul is at adifferent stage in the spiritual development and thus, will make his way upas seen fit personally. Hinduism is conservative and liberal at the same timeas the previous sentence portrays. It is primarily due to this reason why ina Hindu society, one will find different ways and means of reaching God. Thebeauty of it all is that each is tolerant of others. As in any religion ,diversions and divisions are a must, as seen in Christianity and Islam ,although looked down upon by those who call themselves the true believers(Shia/Sunni/Catholics/Protestants etc. Due to the age and maturity ofHinduism we have numerous divisions and learnt to live with each other longago. Our tolerance demonstrates our age and maturity. Others are justscratching the surface by trying to come to a compromise and making peace asin the case of Catholics and Protestants. Regret, the Islamics have a longway to go , they have not even sat on the table with their Shiite brothers to
    make peace.War , killing and subjugation are the blue print of the day , most unfortunately.

    Karma & Dharma

    Karma (deeds) and results of Karma are the basis of our lives. Knowing thatgood karma will bring good results and vice versa, our lives can be guidedtowards fruition of Salvation termed as Moksha. Karmas are of various levelsand will effect a soul for short or long time depending upon its gravity. Asimple act will bring a simple and short term reward , whether it be good orbad. More serious karma can bring a longer lasting reward and yet still somekarmas are so good or bad that they last for some lifetimes. The result orthe fruit of a karma cannot be escaped. This is hard and fast. As for badkarma when one gets realized, begins to do good deeds and takes the pathtowards God then fortunately the punishment of any past bad deeds only helpsone reroute to God. That is the best part of it. Never is a soul condemned to eternal hell as in Christianity or Islam. Thereis always a chance to come back to God and He is more than willing to giveeven the worst sinner a chance at every corner, so much so that if a totalsinner thinks of God at death, moksha is not denied to him. Although , it ishard to think of God on death bed, when the whole life has been in sin. Onecannot go to a doctor's exam and pass without studying for it.When asked by Larry King on the CNN, Rev. Jerry Fallwel had no answer as towhy a 2 year old Somali child dies of hunger when he has had no time even tosin against God , all Jerry had to say was that he did not know. He went onto say that, if and when he died and met God he may find the answer. My sixyear old son could have answered that question without thought - carried overkarma from past life....period.

    The results of karma (deeds) cannot be obliterated just by accepting Jesus orMohammed / Allah . One has to work towards personal salvation .

    Who a guru isA Guru is a teacher/guide, who will recognize the aptitude of a student and take him from there.

    Guru plays a very important part in molding our lives and whilst the Holy book Gita can be accepted as Guru, so can the word of Guru Nanak , Mahavir , Swami Narayan, Buddha and numerous other thinkers and philosophers that India is proud to have contributed to the world heritage.

    What is heaven

    The description of heaven is simply a place where all the mayavic ( materialistic) fantasies are fulfilled. It may be right here on earth or what can be termed as heaven A person who has done good deeds like helping the poor , disabled persons in need, amount to something like a bank account that one can spend and enjoy but it does not necessarily deliver a human at the feet of God. At the time when one enjoys activities of materialistic nature as in heaven , God is the last thing in mind. If the human has accepted the true meaning of this life, as one that ends in moksha, then even if he does good deeds, the results of such deeds are offered to God and all turns into bahkti, devotion and love for Him.

    What is sinIn very simple words, sin is an act that takes one away from God even if it is for a short period or for longer in relation to the seriousness of the deed. So the true devotee , even if he is a family man, will know and accept that all his karma is for God. His spiritual life is number one, without which all the zeros written on a page mean nothing. His number one is God and his life is bhakti in the truest sense. He sees God in all, the clouds, rain, heat , mountains, flowers, seasons etc. He brings up his family in the awareness of God. Due to the karma so done, his children will obviously be of good character and lead the life in love for God. A good soul also has the privilege of taking birth in such a family to continue towards the final truth. Very rewarding indeed.

  11. Hindu

    Hindu Member Staff Member

    Does God punish Eternally ?

    No . Unlike the Christian and Islamic beliefs, God is kind and will alwaysgive a chance to a lost soul to come on the right path. In fact at every stop in this life there is a chance to go back. So much so that , even if one has lived his life in total sin, if thinks of God at the time of death , He will accept the soul . Permanent and eternal punishments are always stressed in beliefs that have huge gaps in their philosophies. Brainwashing is the base of instilling fear and keeping the "flock together". One cannot question any tenets of other beliefs just out of fear of severe punishment from God .

    Hinduism is different, one is encouraged to meditate (think) many answers out for one's self. This in fact develops the mind to much higher understanding than just reading and accepting what is offered in a book or a scripture.

    Mantras & Shlokas

    Mantras and shlokas are used by devotees to divert their minds towards God. It brings the whole mind frame diverted to God and at the same time live a normal life as termed by humans. A Guru will prescribe a mantra in relation to the capacity and spirituality a person has reached. Just as there is no single drug for all diseases there is no single mantra for all. In the
    absence of a Guru , the chanting of OM will no doubt lead one to the correct direction. A natural , inborn attraction to a mantra is a good one to start with.

    The Shlokas (verses) and beautiful names of God have a spiritual vibrations
    that leads one to higher levels of thought and understanding.

    What is evil

    All creation is the work of God and so is evil. The decision for a human is which path he wants to select the good or the bad? The path via evil is full of self destruction and killing one's conscience , the path from good is allowing that hidden voice of God within us to flourish. This is termed as Mahabharat, the war against what is one's own - lust, greed, pride, anger and jealousy. They are as much a part of us as Bhishmapita was to Arjun.

    The Caste System

    This is the most misrepresented, misunderstood and misused aspect of Hinduism. For some it was to retain their authority and for some it is a point by which Hinduism can be demeaned and make the Hindus demoralized. Sinister persons and organizations have used and misused this theme for their benefit and divided the Hindu community into fractions for the purpose of converting them to other religions.

    What is the caste system as prescribed in the Gita ? It is a division of community into four different classes in relation to their trade. This is all the enemies of Hinduism will say ; if they read the Gita further , it says, one is not of a particular caste by birth, it is by his karma. This last bit is purposely ignored. A simple fact sinisterly ignored and our enemies have been successful in dividing us without much effort. This is where this website comes in and will unite and undo the damage done by these foreigners.

    VegetarianismThe whole concept of vegetarianism is based on respect of God and his creation , whereby the animals are also considered as a great part of His wonderful universe .

    Vegetarianism is strictly recommended in Hinduism, for the simple fact that to harm an animal , a creation of God, for taste and self gratification only brings bad results. It is naive to think that because one kills in the name of God/Allah the fruits of such an act is forgiven. If Allah or Jesus were co kind would they slaughter a cow for consumption ? The rule is steadfast, one must suffer the consequence of it. Just think of the basis on which a Muslim will not eat pork and a Hindu will not eat beef. One , Islam's refusal of pork is based on hate for the animal and a Hindu's avoidance of beef is based on kindness and respect for an animal. The basic difference is hate versus love and respect. Yes, there are numerous Hindus who eat meat but the results of such a karma is their own and nobody else's. The suffering that such deeds bring are visible all over the world. Immorality, cruelty , lack of ethical behavior etc are the results of it. In these times, incest , teen pregnancy, abortions, premarital sex , lack of respect for parents, Gurus and Saints is rampant. It is indeed in these times when it is the easiest and hardest to get moksha. Simple bhakti (devotion) and good karma are the shortest road to God but it is also hard due to the presence of the lustful activities all around you. If life is surrendered to God then the atmosphere has no effect on the devotee. Simple living and high thinking should be the basis of life. This is why the faces of most Hindus reflect a humility that the west finds hard to apprehend. For a Hindu, pain and pleasure have no meaning, these are considered just two ordinary states that are temporary. Life itself is temporary.

    Hinduism - no loose ends

    This is a very bold statement to make indeed. Hinduism is a complete religion with no loose ends and all questions have answers within its concept. There is no denying. There are other beliefs that have huge gaps and are explained away by simply saying that God is impossible to understand fully. If anything God is indeed very easy to understand by simply loving Him, the rest just follows.

    What is a cult?

    A cult is something that a person starts, attracts people to it with rewards, even kills fellow humans to convert, has hard and fast rules, if not followed, permanent punishment like eternity in hell etc are advocated to keep the followers in the flock. Any diversion is scorned. All free thinking is banished. The flock is ordered not to discuss other faiths. Even the love and respect of your land's rivers, mountains and Holy places suddenly become simple water and dust and at the same time be replaced by Mecca or some city in the Middle east. Total hypocrisy. Non believers are called names in derogatory terms to keep the flock under the cult leader. Animals are sacrificed in the name of God, but for the selfish purpose of consumption and self gratification. I will leave the reader to decide which beliefs fit the mold of a cult.

    A Hindu may or may not agree to some of the points above but he will willingly give his fellow human the right to practice religion as and how the other sees fit.

    Source: Hindu Unity
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