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AS and A Level: Hinduism
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He agreed with the precept of reincarnation and the existence of karma. However he did not accept ritual behavior or elaborate ceremonies to celebrate religious seasons or holidays (Sprunger, 2010). The Hindu faith calls for praise and devotion to Bramhma, Durga, Ganesh, Krishna and other gods. It is a polytheistic religion references many gods represented by nature and other things in the earth. By comparison Sikhism teaches there is only one God. The purpose of Sikhism is to exist in God or be absorbed by Him.
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The temple is central to festivals, for example Durga Puja, and is often the focus of pilgrimages. The priests speak Sanskrit preventing the language from dying, this upholds the ties to centuries of Hindus. Furthermore, ceremonies are performed to perfection in the temple ensuring that the rituals continue as a constant. The temple acts as a preserver of the religion in all its glory and tradition. The temple is seen as the dwelling place of God and so is considered the place to receive darshan: a glimpse of God. Temple murtis are considered far more significant than home murtis.
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This judgement that is made by God determines whether a person's soul will spend eternity in heaven or hell. Based on Jesus' teachings and other sources of revelation, Christians believe that heaven is a place of eternal life, extravagance and luxury, 'The best and sweetest flowers of Paradise God gives to his people when they are upon their knees. Prayer is the gate of heaven, a key to let us in to Paradise', 'There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away' (Revelation 21:4), these quotations show Christians believe that heaven is a place for those who have worshipped God and have followed the teachings of Jesus.
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Like some other religions, Sikhs are often discriminated against in Britain today. The war on Iraq brings with it an increase in hostility towards those who wear turbans making it hard for some Sikhs to show pride in their religious clothing. The turban has become an important symbol of the Sikh faith. Most Sikh men wear a turban as well as some Sikh women. Sikhs may experience slurs, isolation, hostility and sometimes even assaults just because of their appearance. Many British people are racists and are unable to accept anybody who are of a different race, this must make it very hard for Sikhs to feel normal and at ease in the place that they live.
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The next day the dad tells him to get the water and drink from the side of it. He asks the boy what it's like and the boy replies (quite obviously) "salty" and he gets the boy to drink from different bits of the container and the middle and every time, the boy tells him that it's salty. The point of this story is showing that he can't distinguish the salt from the water, and in the same way atman evades us and becomes part of the whole world. The first recordings of the notion of atman are found in the Upanishads and it isn't really featured that much in the Vedas.
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Such morals include how to follow dharma regardless of the circumstances. Jamison explains this as "Rama is put forward as the perfect example of dharma in action, the exemplar of righteous behaviour." Rama is also popular to be worshipped because he and Sita are thought to be the embodiment of the perfect relationship and Zaehner explains that "The perfect relationship of husband and wife is illustrated by the relationship of Rama and Sita." Statues of Rama and Sita are often found in shrines and temples.
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How observing a visible religious activity can help you to understand the part religion plays in the life of an individual or community
This is called Tarpan. The Second stage is when the Goddess arrives from heaven, amidst a terrific flourish of drums. The main ritual of this stage is unveiling the face of the idol, often modelled on a popular actress. After this there is the worshipping of nine types of plants. Worshipped together, they are a symbol of the Goddess. This is followed by a day beginning with Sanskrit hymns - Sanskrit being the classical language of India, and liturgical language of Hinduism - while thousands gather as a community.
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Examine the Hindu views on arranged marriages. To what extent can Hindu arranged marriages survive in a multi - cultural society
These are very important factors that most parents do not overlook for arranged marriages. In India, parents feel that a girl can be a potential wife at the age of eighteen and parents get worried if she remains unmarried past twenty four or twenty five. It is acceptable for a boy to remain unmarried till his late 20s, but after that questions are asked about his appropriateness as a husband. This does not necessarily apply to a growing urban middle class population.
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Our actions can have a direct effect on someone in our present life for example if the poor person were to steal from the rich person that would result in the rich person feeling pain, Dukkha (suffering) would have been inflicted upon them. However if the rich person who has been wronged were to seek revenge for the damage the poor person has caused, that would result in accumulating bad Karma also. Buddhists believe that a person's action moulds their consciousness and the fact that they have free will allows them to be, as Buddha said, "heirs of our own
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Out of this principle of unity stems the concept of accountability of one's actions in this earthly life. The rise in popularity of Hinduism in the last half of the last century is attributed to this very principle, because it can be compared with the Earth's ecosystem of interdependencies of different biological levels of organisms. The followers of Hinduism are motivated to behave according their religion's moral code not because of the fear of successive punishment. Rather, they know that everything in this world functions according to the cause-and-effect principle and one's actions today will lead to the inevitable consequences after the incarnation.
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What, according to scholars, were the characteristics of the Indus Valley Civilisation? Discuss the possible influence of this civilisation In Hindu thought and culture
There are two main centres of the civilisation, Mohenjo-daro and Harappa. Harappa lies in Punjab Pavina, and Mohenjo-daro lies further down the valley. Archaeological evidence has pointed to the possibility that both cities are believed to have held over 40,000 inhabitants, who had a relatively high standard of living. These cities had a uniform structure. They were divided into two, the lower city, holding the main population, and a fortified citadel. The citadel was the economic and political centre of the city, in Mohenjo-daro and Harappa they were possibly the centres of the civilisation.
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Job may have appeared to be a righteous man on the outside, but beneath, Job could have been a man whose heart was not fully pure, and therefore was being punished by God. Here the conventional Christian attitude is that suffering is a result of ones own actions. In The New Testament the belief is that suffering may not have been brought upon by the individual but by their parents or others around them. In Hinduism the attitude towards suffering is varied.
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The Upanishad aims to answer questions that Hindus might have about the soul. Firstly, the Katha Upanishad answers where atman dwells. Chapter two informs the reader that the soul is "set in the heart of every creature" and "hidden in all beings". This suggests that atman is in every living creature and not just human beings. This could also support the idea of reincarnation in that atman is "unborn" and "eternal" and so is transported from physical body to physical body, human or animal. Chapter four also suggests where atman physically dwells, which is that "spirit the size of a thumb, lives in the middle of one's soul".
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However, Hinduism also teaches that abortion, like any other act of violence, thwarts a soul in its progress toward God. All Hindus believe that all life has a soul or ATMAN. This means Hinduism promotes the theory of "SANCTITY OF LIFE". Sanctity of life means that all life is a special gift from God and must not be taken without proper cause. To Hindus, to take life would incur BAD KARMA. Karma is the nature of law that will bring about good fortune for good deeds and misfortune for bad deeds.
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Hindus also believe the universal soul is the ultimate, so if it is in everything then you should respect everything and therefore killing an animal is exactly the same as killing a human. Some Hindus also believe in the teachings of the school of Advaita Vedanta, which was founded by the Indian philosopher Shankara. Shankara's main belief was the idea of Non-dualism.
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Hinduism is a way of life as much as a religion, and different Hindus may believe different things without being 'right' or 'wrong'. Holy Books The Hindu religion has many holy books. Some of these are called Shastras. They advise on how people should live their lives. The most important Shastras are the Vedas. They are the oldest holy books in the world, Veda means knowledge. Hindus believe that Vedas came from God and had everything that is true about the world.
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"It is essential for Hinduism to reform but the most important issue was the nature of the reformation" Discuss this claim with reference to the activities and teachings of A) Ramakrishna and B) Daynanda Sarasvati.
God in the form of the saint, God in the form of the sinner, God in the form of the righteous, God in the form of the unrighteous." For Ramakrishna all the religion led to the same destination. This has become one of the modern principles of Hinduism today. Ideas such as these have allowed Hinduism to stand the test of time and allow many different ways of thinking to be absorbed into Hinduism and therefore survive the wave of western influence. However Daynanda imposed a monotheistic belief in God and relied only on the Vedas as being truly authentic.
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Ramakrishna from an early age became infatuated with the goddess Kali and had many visions of her. This affected his attitude towards all females. His relation with kali was a mother and son relationship, which he developed with his wife by taking a vow of chastity towards the end of his life. This helped to lift the social view of women considering them saintly and of religious significance rather than as a sexual object. For him, there was no one truth.
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Furthermore, when the British Invaded they brought with them protestant Christianity as practised in Portugal. Along with them came the missionaries, which again imposed a monotheistic tradition. Missionaries were particularly critical about Hindu's for the diverse beliefs about God and their view on afterlife (the process of samsara) Missionaries have said to have baptised literally millions of Hindu's at this time. In addition, missionaries also opened schools, built churches and translated scriptures into Hindi. British Colonialism made a significant impact upon the asian sub continent. Traditions such a sati were made illegal straight away which restricted some of their religious values, especially in upper class Brahmin villages.
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Identify the characteristics beliefs and practises associated with Krishna And what is the significance for a devotee of Krishna.
His love affair with the beautiful cowherdess, Radha is immensely popular with his followers. In many Indian temples dedicated to Krishna, his followers visit (Darshan) his images and present water for washing, drinking, clothes, flowers, incense and offer praise during their puja. Chanting and singing the Hare Krishna mantra is a very popular activity found in temples. The maha-mantra is a transcendental sound vibration which awakens love of God in the heart and mind. As with all other activities, music is considered a sacred offering to God. Murti's of Krishna are ritually installed temples, as it is believed that it is actually full of divine spirit of Krishna.
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Examine the ways in which the Bhagavad-Gita supports the life of duty and action rather than of renunciation.
Krishna says "You sorrow for men who do not need your sorrow and yet speak words that in part are wise. Wise men do not sorrow for the living or the dead". Krishna also talks to Arjuna about the Undying self to persuade him even more that action is the right option to take. He says, "As a man casts off his worn-out clothes and takes another new ones, so does the embodied self-cast off its worn out bodies and enter other new one".
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However, perhaps most importantly, Jinnah became the President of the All India Muslim League after being a significant member for many years. Furthermore, Jinnah attended Round Table conferences in England causing great influence within the British government. Many suggest that Jinnah was the leader of the Pakistan movement spurring the Muslim community forward in search of equality and freedom and in essence creating such a movement and evidently the gain of a separate Muslim state. Perhaps as a show of appreciation, Jinnah was elected as the first President of Pakistan and is still known today as the 'Qaid e azam' which is Arabic for 'The Great Leader.'
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Living or acting in the right way is known as dharma. Every Hindu has a purusharthas, or life goal, and leading a pure life through purity of body and mind is very important so that they are able to carry out their religious duties. To reach their individual goal they must create good Karma through control over gratification of the senses; pleasure; sensual, sexual, and mental enjoyment. The Laws of Manu are guidelines for a pure life and describe the perfect man as: 'He who has perfect 3 fold control: that is control over speech, thought and actions.'
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He also throws rice and spices into the fire symbolising fertility. The bride offers puja to the deities and then goes into a separate room to offer private worship to Parvati and Shiva asking for a long marriage and children, preferably sons. When the groom arrives at the place of the wedding, the bride's mother and the priest meet him at the entrance with a 'sacred light' to ward off any evil spirits. The priest prays to Vishnu and Lakshmi and together, the priest and bride's mother lead the groom into the place of the wedding.
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Christianity and Hinduism seem to have profoundly different views in relation to God and/or existence.
Creation emerged out of Brahman; he moved from an unmanifest state (without any form) to a manifest one (with form). There was always something before creation, as it is an impossible notion to assume that anything can come from nothing. Although, we could argue that God?s ultimate uniqueness can form the ability to produce something from nothing; or the concept of an actual infinite can be put forward. However, with reference to The Cosmological argument (which is an argument for the existence of a first cause), William Craig would state the absurdity of this for we would not be able to cross an infinite, and therefore wouldn?t exist.
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