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• The term 'Hindu' itself probably does not go back before the 15th and 16th
centuries when it was used by people to differentiate themselves from
followers of other traditions. The 'ism' was added to 'Hindu' only in the 19th
century in the context of British colonialism and missionary activity.
• Hinduism is the religion of the majority of people in India and Nepal. It also
exists among significant populations outside of the sub continent and has over
900 million adherents worldwide which makes it the world's third largest religion
• Unlike most other religions, Hinduism has no single founder, no single
scripture, and no commonly agreed set of teachings. Throughout its
extensive history, there have been many key figures teaching different
philosophies and writing numerous holy books.
Hindu devotees participate in a candlelight prayer during the
ritual known as Aarti , within the Navratri Festival , in the city
of Ahmedabad in western India.
• Although it is not easy to define
Hinduism, we can say that it is rooted in
India, most Hindus revere a body of texts
as sacred scripture known as the Veda, and
most Hindus draw on a common system
of values known as dharma.
Hindu scriptures
• The Two types of sacred writings comprise the Hindu scriptures: "Shruti"
(heard) and "Smriti" (memorized). They were passed on from generation to
generation orally for centuries before they were written down mostly in the
Sanskrit language.
Sacred texts
• The primary sacred texts of Hinduism are
the Vedas: the Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yajur
Veda and Atharva Veda.
• Hindus believe that the Vedas texts were
received by scholars direct from God and
passed on to the next generations by word
of mouth.
• The Samhitas are the most ancient part of the Vedas, consisting of hymns
of praise to God.
• The Brahmanas are rituals and prayers to guide the priests in their duties.
• The Aranyakas concern worship and meditation.
• The Upanishads consist of the mystical and philosophical teachings of
• The most fundamental of Hindu
deities is the Trinity of Brahma,
Vishnu and Shiva - creator,
preserver and destroyer
respectively. Hindus also worship
spirits, trees, animals and even
• Is the first god in the Hindu triumvirate, his job was the
creation of the world and all creatures. His name should
not be confused with Brahman, who is the supreme
God force present within all things. Brahma has four
heads and it is believed that from these heads came the
four Vedas
• Is the third god in the Hindu triumvirate, his
role is to destroy the universe in order to recreate it. Shiva is known to have untamed
passion, which leads him to extremes in
• Is the second god in the Hindu triumvirate,
he is the preserver and protector of the
universe. His role is to return to the earth in
troubled times and restore the balance of good
and evil.
• In a corner of the infinite spiritual universe there is a ocean of material
cause. There is the largest of the forms or avatars of Vishnu god: Maha
Vishnu, who is lying on that ocean . His immense body releases each material
universe. Each spherical universe is filled with liquid halfway.
• On the ocean is another form of Vishnu , Garbhodaka -Sai Vishnu lying on
the uterine ocean desing, and above Ananta Shesha. a lake forms in her
navel, and above it a lotus flower grows, from it god Brahma is born with
four heads. Brahma with his mind creates the world : the earth and all places,
planets, stars, visible and invisible in heaven, where the gods and other beings
Hinduism differs from Christianity and other
monotheistic religions in that it does not have:
A single founder
An specific theological system
A single concept of deity
A single holy text
A single system of morality
A central religious authority