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Hinduism: World Civilizations Jefferson High School: 2012 Welcome to America! From 1,678,765 in 2000, the population grew to 2,319,222 in 2005, a growth rate of 38%, the highest for any Asian community. Indians have become the second largest Asian community after the Chinese whose numbers went up from 2,432,585 to 2,882,257 over the same period, according to the American Community Survey of the U.S. Census Bureau. The vast majority of Hindus live in India and Nepal Hindu Population in the World Hinduism: 3rd Largest Religion 1. Christianity: 2.1 billion • • • • • • 2. 3. Catholicism - 1.2 billion Protestantism - 670 million Eastern Orthodoxy - 230 million Anglicanism - 85 million Oriental Orthodoxy - 82 million Restorationism - 40 million Islam: Islam: 1.5 billion Secular/Nonreligious/Agnostic/Atheist: 1.1 billion 4. Hinduism: 900 million 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. Chinese traditional religion: 394 million Buddhism: 376 million primal-indigenous: 300 million African Traditional & Diasporic: 100 million Sikhism: 23 million Juche: 19 million Spiritism: 15 million Judaism: 14 million Hinduism: AUM or OM Hinduism’s Origins The origins of Hinduism can be traced back to around 1500 B.C., in what is now India. In its origins it is a ritualistic religion, while in its modern form, it is rooted in internal meditation. Difficulties in studying Hinduism Diversity of beliefs (why this diversity?) Hinduism gives credence to any legitimate path a genuine seeker takes to religion/salvation (at least to a certain extent) Founder of Hinduism Indigenous religion of India: no one founder is known See visualnext slide Hindu Gods Monotheistic view – Ishvara is the personified form of Brahman; that is, Saguna Brahman has particular traits. These traits are expressed through the Trimurti (three manifestations). Pantheistic view – the entire universe is one divine entity who is simultaneously at one with the universe and who transcends it as well. Polytheistic View – the ten incarnations, avatars, are the “original” gods of Hinduism; it is estimated that there are now some 300 million gods in the Hindu religion. Each god is said to provide focus on an aspect/attribute of Ishvara – a “path” to understanding. According to Hindu tradition, Brahman became personal in the form of Ishvara Nirguna Brahman ("without attributes") Saguna Brahman ("with attributes") Ishvara Brahma "The Creator" Vishnu "The Preserver" Ishvara became known to humanity in three manifestations. Siva "The Destroyer" Ishvara then became known further through the ten mythical incarnations of Vishnu, called avatars (animals: a fish, a boar, a tortoise… and humans: Krishna, Rama, Buddha…). Ten Incarnations Hindu Trinity Brahma - the Creator Vishnu - the Preserver Shiva - the Destroyer Three aspects/powers of the same divine being THE TWO MOST POPULAR GODS SHIVA VISHNU Avatars of Vishnu Krishna Rama Goddesses Lakshmi Saraswati Kali Wife of Shiva Black in color & wearing a necklace of skulls. She is a bloodthirsty goddess. A violent destroyer of her enemies Affectionate and caring for her devotees. All these deities are but Manifest forms (attributes and functions) of the impersonal Brahman Hindu’s Top Ten God’s 1. Ganesha 2. Shiva Hindu’s Top Ten God’s 3. Krishna Hindu’s Top Ten God’s 4. Rama 5. Hanuman Hindu’s Top Ten God’s 6. Vishnu 7. Lakshmi 8. Durga Hindu’s Top Ten God’s 9. Kali Hindu’s Top Ten God’s 10. Saraswati And we too are manifest forms of God! “We are not human beings having spiritual experiences; We are spiritual beings having a human experience!” “That art Thou” Hinduism is about recognizing the all pervasiveness of the divine Sacred Texts Rig Veda: Hinduism’s oldest text- nearly 4000 years. Bhagavad Gita: Hinduism’s most popular sacred text (tells the stories of the avatar gods) NEXT SLIDE BEFORE TAKING NOTES Sacred Texts The Vedas (knowledge): (1200 B.C. – 800 B.C.) The earliest, and most sacred documents in the Hindu religion are called the Vedas; the Vedas are a collection of prayers, chants, incantations, and meditative musings. They were initially written as instructions for priests as to how believers should perform the rituals of the religion, however, as a result of the Upanishads, they have become a more “personal” document – they are used by some Hindu believers. The Upanishads (to end/conclude): (800 B.C. – 300 B.C.) The equivalent to the Christian New Testament, are a series of stories called the Upanishads. These stories expound the idea that behind the many gods of this world stands one Ultimate Reality, which the Hindus refer to as Brahman – however, as much as Hinduism is monotheistic, it has elements of polytheism, and pantheism. Clergy Not one specific type Gurus: “teachers” that direct people through all phases of life These “gurus” are typically from the Brahmin caste Hinduism’s Beliefs: The Problem Humanity’s primary problem, according to the Hindu, is our ignorance to our divine nature. We have forgotten that we are extended from Brahman and so we mistakenly attach ourselves to the desires of our “separate self” (ego) and thereby suffer the consequences. Because of our attachment to desire and individualistic existence, we are all subject to the law of Karma. Hinduism’s Beliefs: Karma Hindus believe in karma, the law of cause and effect by which each individual creates his own destiny by his thoughts, words and deeds. Hinduism’s Beliefs: Reincarnation Hindus believe that the soul reincarnates, evolving through many births until all karmas have been resolved, and moksha, liberation from the cycle of rebirth, is attained. Not a single soul will be deprived of this destiny. NEXT SLIDE NEXT SLIDE Samsara is the wheel of rebirth which means the soul is reborn from one life form to another. ALL LIFE IS SACRED Reincarnation Samsara is the wheel of rebirth which means the soul is reborn from one life form to another. People may be reincarnated at a higher or lower level of existence depending on their karma from their present life. People may be reborn as plants or animals or they may be elevated to a higher caste as a human. Death is not final for Hindus as they expect to be reborn many times. ALL LIFE IS SACRED Hinduism’s Beliefs: Caste System Hinduism’s Beliefs: Ganges River Falling from its source of Vishnu’s feet onto Shiva’s head and out from his hair, the water of the Ganges is sacred enough to purify all sins. 3 paths Karamamarga-path of works and action Jnanamarga-path of knowledge or philosophy Bhaktimarg-path of devotion to God 3 debts To God To sages and saints To ancestors 4 stages of life Brahmacharga-school years-grow and learn Grhastha-marriage, family and career Vanaprastha-turn attention to spiritual things Sanrgasu-abandon world to seek spiritual things 4 purposes in life Dharma-fulfill moral, social and religious duties Artha-attain financial and worldly success Kama-satisfy desires and drives in moderation Moksha-attain freedom from reincarnation 7 sacred cities Ayodhya Mathura Gaya (Bodhgaya) Kasi (Varanasi Benares) Kanci Avantika (Ujjain) Dvaraka 10 commitments Ahimsa-do not harm Satya-do not lie Asteya-do not steal Brahmacharya-do not overindulge Aparigraha-do not be greedy Saucna-be clean Santosha-be content Tapas-be self disciplined Svadhyaya-study Ishvara Pranidhana-surrender to God Mahatma Gandhi 1869-1948 Non-violent civil disobedience Dandi Salt March Quit India Stop violence between Hindus, Muslims, and Sihks Timeline of Hinduism 2800-2000 BCE: Indus Valley civilization. 1200-900 BCE: Early Vedic Period - earliest Vedas are compiled. 900-600 BCE: Late Vedic period - Brahmanical religion develops, emphasizing ritual and social obligation. 800-300 BCE: The 11 major Upanishads are written, which include the ideas of reincarnation and karma. 500 BCE-1000 CEE: Pics and Puranas are written, reflecting the rise of devotional movements dedicated to Shiva, Vishnu and Devi. 5th cent. BCE: Buddhism and Jainism founded in India. c. 320-185 BCE: Mauryan Dynasty founded by Chandragupt a.c. 320-500 CE: Gupta empire. c. 500-650 CE: Gupta empire divides into several kingdoms. c. 600-1600 CE: Rise of devotional movements, puja (worship) rituals, and idea of equality of devotees. 7th-11th centuries: Esoteric movements based on Tantras develop. c. 870-1280: Cholas dynasty. Hinduism arises in the south. Timeline of Hinduism (cont.) 1498: European presence in southern Asia begins with the arrival of Vasco de Gama.1540sPortugese missionaries arrive in India. 17th-19th centuries: Hindu Renaissance. c. 1700: British East India Company formed. 1720: Collapse of the Mughal empire; British begin to take power. 1857: National War of Independence against the British is sparked by the British use of cow fat in guns. 1876: Queen Victoria becomes Empress of India. 1895: Vedanta Society founded by Vivekananda. Promotes Hinduism as a world religion and India as a single nation. 1915: Gandhi joins the nationalist movement. 1947: India regains independence, but its partitioning leads to conflicts between Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs. 1948: Assassination of Gandhi. 1950: Constitution of the Republic of India.