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University Degree: Buddhism
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Adoring a deity more than one's kin, lovers and friends is the essence of Bhakti Yoga. The deity is the beloved and the devotee is the lover. "Bhakti Yoga is based on the doctrine 'Love is God and God is Love.' " (Johari, "Bhakti Yoga," par. 2) In Bhakti yoga, everything is a manifestation of the divine and all else is meaningless. Bhakti Yoga is regarded as the most direct method to merge in cosmic consciousness and is advocated by Krishna in the Gita as the best and quickest path to achieving liberation and enlightenment.
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It was basically views, thoughts, and principles of different scholars who attempted to make the world a better place through Christianity and religion. 2The main components of the enlightenment thought are as follows: The universe can be understood through the use of reason alone Truth can be arrived through empirical observation, the use of reason, and systematic doubt Human experience is the foundation of human understanding of truth; authority is not to be preferred over experience All human life both social and individual, can be understood in the same way the natural world can be understood; once understood, human life
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The Eighteenth century saw a radical change in the way the church and state cooperated in many European countries.
Jews in Medieval Europe were not interested in any relationship with Christians but due the history of persecution towards them but due to the fact that they lived under Christendom they could not avoid political and economic relations with them. Politically, the Jewish community of the pre-enlightenment period was seen as a minority that had some ties with the host state, yet the members of these communities had no rights as citizens nor were they even legal citizens of the state.
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This, then, is the task which Enlightenment sets itself out on: the rational comprehension of the natural world. "In the most general sense of progressive thought, the Enlightenment has always aimed at liberating men from fear and establishing their sovereignty. Yet the fully enlightened earth radiates disaster triumphant." The project of Enlightenment has gone horribly wrong; yet reason has failed us not because it has gone too far, but rather because it has not gone far enough. Myth is anything beyond reason; Enlightenment goes beyond reason in abstracting one particular moment of rationality and substituting it as the concept's sole totality, thereby reverting to myth.
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The understanding of the Buddhist tradition in regards to the middle way is fundamental to understand and comprehending where Nagarjuna's philosophy developed from and how Zen tradition developed under this influence. The fundamental basis of Buddhism is the eradication of suffering (duhkha). The Buddha through his teaching offered the pathway in which the cessation of duhkha could be realized. Buddha explained that duhkha arises from craving that is rooted in ignorance. Upon the eradication of ignorance through following the Four Noble Truths one could reach Nirvana, where suffering is extinct and eternal joy will be realized.
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The Enlightenment began in seventeenth and eighteenth century Europe out of the desire to assert and foster individual freedom. It was an alternative to the authoritarian constraints of monarchies and church hierarchies. The characteristics of the project are: scepticism towards the doctrines of the church, individualism, a belief in science and the experimental method, the use of reason, that education could be a catalyst of social change and the demand for political representation. Since reason is a universal force and not limited to any particular culture or to a special geniuses, all human beings can rationally participate in the broad general discussion concerning all topics, and especially politics.
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The question is whether morals and the perception of human nature really have changed? Firstly, it is important to acknowledge the significance of the relation between religion and morality. The Church was so deeply rooted in the Western civilisation. Christianity had an incredible influence on peoples' thought and conduct thus lifestyles. Christianity formed the basis for ethics and consequently the justice system. We can thus imagine how far Christianity managed to spread its tentacles across the culture and the society. The social structure was supported and maintained though religion. The monarch was blessed and the monarchy holly supported by clerical and papal institution.
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Religion is both a problemwhere its structures of dominance have oppressed women, as well as the solution where its vision of liberation has generated powerful movements for social change. (Eck & Devaki, 1986)
Many religions give equal status and value to men and women but the actual lived experiences of the people may not correspond with what the religion specifies. It has been observed that women are considered as subordinates to men and are not allowed to lead their lives independently (Holm and Bowker, 1994). A woman?s image in a society is as an obedient, quiet, innocent, and ignorant person who devotes her life to serve her family. However, religion provides the vision of freedom that asks for a social change.
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