Hinduism Origin: Hinduism is the faith followed by majority of people in India and by most of the Indians living around the World. It is believed that it is the first religion established near Indus Valley where civilization emerged in human life.
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The mass of land encompassing the South-Western and Southern Region of Asia is considered to be the cradle of Hinduism, the premier faith followed in the civilized society.
Hinduism has neither an exact date of commencement nor any individual who can claim to be the founder. The Hinduism origin is said to be commensurate with the Vedic period.
Hinduism prescribes four rules called as “Purushaarthaas” which means goals which give meaning to civilized human life.
- the human life is the 7th life of an Aatma;
- a person is born into a human being after having lived in animal forms in the earlier 6 births;
- if the human does not follow the Dharma, he will keep on being born as human and suffer for all the misdeeds done in earlier births as human;
- the aatma which follows Dharma in letter and spirit will attain a liberation / actualization / ultimate bliss which does not result in re-birth and this is Moksha;
- there are Swarg and Narag which mean Heaven and Hell after the end of life.
The strictures referred above are put in place to regulate human life in moral path. Moksha also denotes detached attachment. Sanyasa which means hermit life, is also considered to be a way for Moksha.
The Goals of Life
As a premier religion, Hinduism played a pivotal role in steering the society. Even now, Hinduism has solutions for anomalies in human life. That is why it is called as “Sanathana” which means “eternal“.
The eternity stems from the fact that Hinduism is not ‘spread’ and but followed for generation after generation by way ‘Sruti’ and ‘Smruti’ which means ‘listened to’ and ‘remembered’. It has followed the cycle of hearing, understanding, telling, discussing and remembering.
Tharka meaning logical debates are always encouraged to evolve ways to propagate and follow the nuances of Dharma. This kind of intelligent openness is unique to Hinduism.
The main scriptures which contained the crux of Hinduism are the four “Vedhams” which serve as pillars. They are Rug (chanting of manthras or hymns), Yajur (rituals), Sama (music and arts), Adharvana (medicine, astrology, astronomy) etc. All these put together are called samhidhaas meaning collection of Vedhams.
The scriptures are also available in Upanishads which provide guidance for the way of thinking and for the way of life. Upanishads are of various types such as Brahadaaranyaka, Chandogya, Kena, Katha, Aitreya etc.
The Vedhams and Upanishads were taught by the sages who were called ‘Rishis’. ‘Rishis’ were leading married life. Being a Rishi was never associated with compulsory celibacy. “Rishi pathnis” were also the scholars in Vedic scriptures.
The “Sishyaas” i.e, the students should stay with the Rishi family, help the family in their daily chores, have their food, listen as and when the teacher teaches irrespective of the time of the day.
Each Rishi is a personified ‘Gothram’. All the students studying under one Guru are called “Sa Gothra” from which the word ‘sagotharan’ is formed. It means that the students should treat each others as own brothers.
To avoid family feuds, members of same gothram never marry within the group. This also encouraged people to expand the society beyond their family circle. This system is the route for the civilization with culture.
Hinduism is not confined to any Rule Book which describes the “dos” and “don’ts“. It accommodates both believers and non believers. Any kind of worship is accepted. What is important is following of Dharma. Even if a person is not regular in his prayers and temple visits, if he does his Karmas with Dharma, he is the true Hindu.
Source of reference: The order of the names of ‘Purusharthas’ and ‘Karma, Samsara, Yoga’ are referred from the web-site.