Hinduism is a complex religion that has a variety of beliefs and traditions. It is a religious tradition of Indian origin, embracing the beliefs and practices of Hindu. Hinduism is a religion of diverse gods and goddesses. Many sacred elements characterize the Hindu religion. The oldest and most sacred Hindu scriptures, the Vedas, originated around 1500 B. C. Hindus believe that Vedas are timeless. The word Veda means “knowledge. ” It’s believed that this knowledge came directly from Lord Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
There are four Vedas. They are named Rig, Sama, Yajur, and Atharva. The Vedas consist of prayers to the One Divine and the divinities of nature. The Vedas also include prayers for matrimony, progeny, prosperity, concord, domestic rites, formulas for magic, and more. They deal with day-to-day necessities as well as spiritual realization. They are written in metrical verse, usually of three to four lines in length (Eastern Religions 2005). Hinduism is the third most popular religion in the world. A lot of Hindus worship in their homes swell as Temples.
Hindus usually have a small room in the house in which they keep all their deities of gods and picture’s of gods and which they pray in daily. Hindu Worship is known as puja. It can be carried out in the home of Hindus before a shrine, or in the Hindu temple, which is known as a mandir. There are many different places of Hindu worship and each one has its own special or unique features but there are certain features that are present in all places of worship. All types of mandirs whether they’re traditional or not, are special. Murtis are essential in a mandir.
The murtis are the statues of god, which have a godly presence in them. In all mandirs, people to show respect to god, must observe silence. Hindu worship involves all five senses of touch, taste, smell, sight, and hearing, and what Hindus consider the five basic elements: light, fire, earth, air, and water. Hindus wash thoroughly before prayers at home. When they enter the temple whether it is at home, they remove their shoes. They show respect to the gods by making offerings of money or food (rice, nuts, or fruit) to the shrines of the gods. Puja begins with the washing of the images of the gods.
They are washed with water, and sometimes with milk based mixture called panchamrit. Samskaras are an important element in the belief and practice of Hindu religion. The word samskar which means to purify or form thoroughly. Sacrament also means “confirmation of some promise or oath; things of mysterious significance, sacred influence and symbol” (Eastern Religion 2005). For the Hindu, life is a sacred journey; impurity is inherently attached to the pre-natal stage of birth. Samskaras are analogous to stepping-stones guiding the path to purification (Eastern Religion 2005).
In the Hindu tradition, deities descend to the earth as human beings and human beings ascend to a divine status. Although the many lineages of holy teachers in Hinduism were composed of men of Brahmin caste, hundreds of saints and charismatic people considered gurus have come from all caste of society. In many Hindu communities, the sacred teacher is considered as important as the deity, the deity is venerated, and even worshipped, other communities. The Hindu calendar is filled with auspicious and propitious times on which to embark on journeys, start new enterprises, enter homes, get married or have celebrations.
Astrology is an integral part of Hindu life, and a child’s horoscope is frequently cast as soon as she or he is born. There are times that are auspicious for everyone and others that are specific to individuals. Inauspicious times are also marked. Festival days involve times of feasting and fasting. Important festivals include the birthdays of the gods Rama, Krishna, and Ganesha; Navaratri (“Nine Nights”), which marks the destruction of a demon by the goddess Durga; Dipavali (“Necklace of Lights”); and Pongal, a harvest festival in southern India (Eastern Religion 2005).
Hindus believe the soul the inner most spirit or true self is in every living creature. So all living creatures should deserve respect. Hindus, respect every living creature because they understand that people can be reincarnated into any form of living creature, due to bad actions in a previous life and therefore all creatures should be respected and not punished in any way because it’s likely their body is a reflection of previous life, not their present life.
Many things in the Hindu society including, the fact that not all Hindus eat beef and many are vegetarian. A householder should regard deer, camels, donkeys, mice, snakes, birds, and bees. Most Hindus believe in the immortality of the soul and in reincarnation. There is an also popular belief in ghosts and spirits, including those that may possess people. A person’s death is followed by rebirth, and the cycle of birth and death continues until one attains liberation. Rebirth is perceived as suffering, and the happiness one has on earth is suppose to be temporary.
Liberation is conceptualized in several ways, including: as ineffable and beyond words; as a loving union with the supreme being. Hindus believe that the time they will spend on earth is decided from the moment they are born. Therefore, if a young person dies the family can be consoled by the thought that the time they had spent on earth was what God had intended for them. Another thought that comforts Hindus after the death of a loved one is their belief in reincarnation. Reincarnation means to be born again.
Hindu society is marked by different hierarchies that include caste, gender, age, and piety, and by practices that involve meditation, devotional singing, and dietary control. In concluding this paper, I have better understanding of their significance and meaning of Hindu religious traditions, and the Hindu belief system. References Fisher, M. P. (2003). Living religions (5th ed. ). University of Phoenix Special Edition Series. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. Coogan, Michael D. (2005). Eastern Religions Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, and Shinto. New York: Oxford University Press Inc.