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Hindu beliefs
 Hinduism
is best seen as a
tradition- today a Hindu can be
polytheistic, monotheistic,
pantheistic, agnostic or atheistic
and still claim to be a Hindu.
 However, there are certain central
concepts-reincarnation, merging
with “Brahman" ultimate reality)
and Moksha (the escape from the
cycle of reincarnation.
 Brahman
is One & Eternal= no
before or after, for everything
is everywhere always.
 Brahman is intrinsically
dynamic= unformed, immortal,
 All things are mutually related
–all of part of basic oneness.
Devas= Aspects
 Shiva,
the Cosmic Dancer, is
the most perfect
personification-through dance
everything is sustained.
“That art thou”
 Human
nature is not just
space/time body (samara) nor
individual consciousness of
mind (jiva)- in each of us is an
immortal element, our true
self, the Atman.
 Brahman
and Atman are the
same-”Into Him I shall enter.”
Maya and Avidya
 Maya
is the human tendency
to regard appearance as
reality; that multiplicity is
real; that Samsara is real.
 Avidya= ignorance of the true
nature of reality.
 Nirvana (Moska)= experiential
realization of oneness.
Cycle-Life and Rebirth
 Samsara=
world of relentless
mutability= is illusion.
 Reincarnation=all living things
are besouled, become
incarnate in different bodies;
depends on kind of life lived
previously = Karma.
Existence of Samsara
 Why
does samsara exist? –
Upanishads=“lila” or “sport”an expression of Brahman’s
constitutive delight (“anada).
 Will need to solve the problem
of one and many and the
relationship of Brahman to the
world of multiplicity.
Problem of Karma
 Is Karma false to the facts?-
”the wicked often prosper at
the expense of the good.”
 Yet- reincarnation- we will
inevitably reap what we sow.
 Is this satisfactory?
Sankara (788-820A.D.)
 Advaita
(nondualistic) relation
of Brahman and a self.
 What is an individual self is in
fact not essentially different
from the one Self (Atman)-as
space in individual jug not
different from space as a
Sankara (788-820A.D.)
 Comprehend
the world at two
levels or from two points of
view: lower knowledge and
higher knowledge.
 Sublatable things- (1)object of
awareness of some subject;
(2) distinguishability; (3)
subject to time and change.