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A Christian PerspectiveSeptember 8, Rick Rood gives us an understanding of this major world religion which is becoming more a part of the American scene with the growth of a Hindu immigrant population. Taking a biblical worldview perspective, he highlights the major differences between Hinduism and Christianity.
Most of us have had at least some exposure to what has become known as the New Age movement. If so, we have probably realized that Hinduism is the wellspring of a good deal of New Age thinking.
Most of us are probably also aware than an increasing number of Asian Indians are residing in the U. We may be surprised, in fact, to learn that there are approximately Hindu temples or Hindu centers in the U.
Many believe that due to its eclectic nature, Hinduism has the potential to serve as a major vehicle for uniting much of the non-Christian religious world. The appeal of Hinduism to Western culture is not difficult to comprehend. For one, Hinduism is comfortable with evolutionary thinking.
As modern science emphasizes our physical evolution, so Hinduism emphasizes our spiritual evolution. As modern philosophy emphasizes the relativity of all truth claims, so Hinduism tolerates many seemingly contradictory religious beliefs.
As a religion that also emphasizes the primacy of the spiritual over material reality, Hinduism appeals to many who are disillusioned with strictly material pursuits.
Hinduism has its roots in the interrelationship of two basic religious systems: The Vedas are four collections of writings composed between about and B. The later sections of the Vedas are known as the Upanishads.
These Vedic writings are considered inspired. Later Hindu writings, including the renowned Bhagavad Gita, are of lesser authority, but widely popular. What then do Hindus believe about God? The early portions of the Hindu scriptures known as the Vedas describe a number of deities who for the most part are personifications of natural phenomena, such as storms and fire.
Prayers and sacrifices were offered to these gods.
An extensive system of priestly rituals and sacrifices was eventually developed which served as means of obtaining the blessing of these gods. Many of the Upanishads, instead of speaking of a multitude of gods, refer to an ultimate reality beyond our comprehension called Brahman.
Though Brahman is impersonal in nature, it is sometimes referred to in personal terms by the name Isvara. In addition, instead of ritual sacrifice, intuitive knowledge of the oneness of all things came to be endorsed as the way of contact with divine reality.
Also found in the Upanishads is the teaching that the material world including our conscious personalities is less than fully real.
Though this monistic or pantheistic philosophy provided a comprehensive intellectual understanding of the divine reality for Hindus, it lacked a strong appeal to the heart. The Gita records a conversation between the warrior-prince Arjuna and his charioteer Krishna who is unveiled as an incarnation of the god Vishnuin which personal devotion to deity is endorsed as a way of salvation for all classes of people.
From this time forward, these two major streams of Hindu thought and practice grew and developed—the more intellectual and philosophical stream that emphasized the oneness of all things, and the stream that emphasized personal devotion to a god.
The latter stream has predominated among the common people of India to this present day. Chief among the gods so venerated are Brahma the creatorVishnu the preserverand Shiva the destroyer. All in all, it is often stated that Hinduism claims million gods and goddesses!
One might wonder how such a multitude of beliefs about the divine could possibly co-exist in one religion. There is, however, a widespread recognition that none of the personal gods of Hinduism is in any way exclusive or unique. They are all simply different ways of conceiving of the one reality behind all things— Brahman.
Foundational Hindu Beliefs Next we must turn our attention to two core beliefs of Hindus: The first of these core beliefs is the doctrine of karma. The doctrine of karma states that every thought and action results in certain consequences born by the actor or thinker. If a person lies or steals, he will be wronged in some way in the future.
Some believe that karma implies strict determinism or fatalism that one must simply resign himself to living out his karma.May 01, · Caste is a system of social stratification, or grouping of people according to wealth, income, occupation, or social status. Caste is characterised by endogamy (marriage within the same class), inheritance of a lifestyle often linked to occupation, social status or hierarchical status, and permitted social interaction and exclusions.
Strayer Chapter 6. STUDY. PLAY. What is the difference between class and caste-Both systems are used to define social hierachy-The caste system defined social groups more rigidly and with less opportunity for social mobility than in many class-based systems.
One entered a caste by being born to parents of that caste. One’s caste dictated deity, vocation, place of residence, and choice of mate. Rigid rules forbade much social intercourse between members of . Yes, there is a hierarchy of clergy in the Catholic Church but it is a call to various degrees of service, not separation for any social or other cultural reasons.
As to the Christian caste system case in India: the water is Jesus ; the bucket is the soul, and ; the hole is the caste belief, and; the filling persons are the priests and the. Home Hinduism: A Christian Perspective, May 27, September 8, Taking a biblical worldview perspective, he highlights the major differences between Hinduism and Christianity.
Outside the caste system are the untouchables or outcastes.
Though outlawed in India in the late s, many in the countryside are still considered outcastes. A Comparison between the Caste System and the Biblical Worldview. words. 2 pages. A Comparison of the Rule of Saint Francis and the Rule of Saint Benedict.
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