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By Julius Lipner

'Hinduism' is a tremendously advanced phenomenon, a global faith with a background of over 3000 years. It has produced women and men who've made notable contributions around the variety of civilised human behaviour, and performed a vital half within the upward thrust of 2 different nice religions - Buddhism and Sikhism. Julius Lipner used to be born and raised in India and is ready to draw on his personal adventure of Hindu ideals and practices to give an explanation for what it potential to be Hindu in a altering global. Hindus examines the faith as a plural phenomenon - that's, as a kin of religions, instead of a monolithic entity. The method is thematic, and the writer considers a variety of issues - reminiscent of the prestige of ladies - in additional than one position and from multiple attitude. He additionally tells and occasionally analyses Hindu tales, stressing the narrative caliber of Hindu faith and giving us an perception into the character of the Hindu phenomenon itself. Hindus offers a brand new viewpoint on what it ability to dwell as a Hindu and allows readers to understand this nice and marvellous spiritual phenomenon, its amazing richness, and how it encompasses human event from the chic to the ridiculous.

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Additional info for Hindus: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices (Library of Religious Beliefs and Practices)

Example text

The compositions and reflections of eminent sages within the ambit of the śākhās would have developed the corpus. Redactors would have both edited and then located these compositions in already established parts of the Vedas. In any case, in comparison to the quite determinate scriptural canon of traditional Christianity and Islam, for example, the boundaries of the Vedic scriptures as they have come down to us are not particularly neat. Thus Śa kara (600–700 CE), the earliest Vedāntin theologian whose works have survived intact, has written commentaries on ten or so Upani ads to which he clearly accorded canonical status (and only on particular recensions of these, where recensions exist), though he supports his views by quoting from a few other Upani ads which he must also have regarded as authoritative.

Brahman is the sole underlying reality of all diversity; the Upani ads reveal the nature of Brahman, of our true self (ātman), and of the inner relationship between the two despite the misleading appearances of life in this world. This is the inner meaning of the yajña, the sacrificial ritual, which is the bridge between this world and immortality. The yajña performed externally is only the symbol of the yajña to be performed internally. The Vedantic schools differ in their views about the nature of Brahman and of the relationship between Brahman and ātman, but they all agree that it is the Upani ads that are the source of the saving knowledge concerning these realities.

Then from his southern mouth he emitted the sacrificial formulas [yajurs], the Tri ubh metre, the Chandas metre, the Fifteenfold Praise and what is known as the Great Chant. Then from his western mouth he emitted the chants [sāmans, of the Sāma Veda), the Jagatī metre, the Seventeenfold Praise as also the Vairūpya and Atirātra rituals. And from his fourth [northern] mouth he emitted the Twenty-One Praise, the Atharva [Veda], the Āptoryāma ritual and the Anu ubh and Vairāja metres…[Brahmā] measured out the verses, the formulas and the chants so that the sacrifice may be accomplished.

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