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Flashcards in Hinduism Deck (30)
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It recognizes no personal gods and may be viewed as an atheistic approach to life. It sees the universe as a dualism of the forces of spirit and matter. Everything that exists are these two forces, and from them springs all that we know in the world.



The world is viewed as a dualism and teaches that one should attempted to join the individual spirit to god, the atman, to Brahman. The main feature of Yoga is meditation: it is necessary even for the gods if they are to find release from the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. According to Yoga Sutra there are eight steps one must take to achieve trance.
One must make vows of restraint (against harming living creatures and against unchastity)
One attempts to achieve internal control, calmness, and equanimity
One learns and practices bodily postures
One works on breath control
Control of the senses
Extreme concentration on a single object
One seeks to achieve meditation
One seeks a trance



The primary concern of Mimansa is the avoidance of rebirth. This was accomplished by obeying the laws laid down in the Vedas and by performing the rites established in them.



The Vaisheshika teaches that the universe is composed of nine distinct elements: earth, water, air, fire, soul, mind, ether, time, and space. No gods are needed in the universe.



Individuals can have a real knowledge of the world. This system is concerned primarily with logical analysis as a means of arriving at the truth about the world.



Vedanta philosophy is based on the Upanishadic writings and their outlook on life. The Vedanta is monistic and assumes only one true essence in the universe, Brahman. The world of humankind, its bodies, souls, and material substances does not really exist, and the world as we perceive it is false knowledge. This belief in false knowledge and ignorance binds one endlessly to the cycle of birth and rebirth until one can achieve liberation through knowledge.


Reincarnation according to LoM

The Law of Manu says that one obtains the life of motionlessness as a result of the evil committed by the body, the life of birds and beasts as a result of the evil committed by speech, and the life of the lowest born because of the evil committed by mind. On the other hand, one who does only good shall be born as a god, and one who performs mixed actions will be born a man.


Time according to LoM

-Time is viewed in a virtually endless manner. It was viewed as moving endlessly through various cycles. First, the world is created by Brahma, where there is peace, abundance, and morality, Next this world begins to decay, where famines, wars, and immorality become more common. Finally, the world is destroyed and all souls depart into suspended being, awaiting the time in which the world is once again created.



The collection of gods that the Aryans worshipped seems to have been personifications of various natural forces, such as the storm, the sun, the moon, and the fertility of the soil. The main version of worship was sacrifice for the Aryans, which were done on altars, as the were a nomadic people. They sacrificed animals, butter, milk, and had libations of the juice of the soma plant. The most sacred sacrifice was the horse sacrifice in which a horse was chosen to roam the countryside for one year. After this year it was returned, killed, and eaten by the ruler and his family. The ruler that could perform this 100 times was said to acquire over 100 years of incredible wealth.



A member of the highest Hindu Caste, a highly regarded priest who served the cults of the various Aryan cities.



The chieftains and their warriors, also considered to be near the apex of society



The commoners and merchants , regarded as being subservient to the two upper classes



Those conquered pre-Aryan people not considered full members of society and usually were positioned as slaves or or servants



The oldest sacred books of hinduism are the vedas. The vedas are the basic source of the hindu understanding of the universe. There are 4 basic vedic books.
Rig-veda-basic mythology
Yajur-veda- what is to be resided during rituals
Sama-veda- a collection of verses resided by priests
Atharva-veda- rituals used in the home



The fourth sections of each Vedas . They are made up of philosophical materials



It is the one true reality in the universe. It is eternal, infinite, unknowable, sexless without a past present or future and totally impersonal. All living beings are only false expressions of the Brahman.



Is the ignorance of all human beings. The belief in the world around us is avidya



The belief that every action and every thought has its consequence, marking the individual internally and felt either in this life or in a succeeding one



The breaking free from life.



The duties and opportunities that members of each group in the Law of Manu must obey



The belief that all forms of life were sacred and were to be loved and preserved whenever possible.


Bhagavad Gita

An epic poem describing Indian culture and religion. It relates the stories of the struggle of notable heroes and gods and contains much of the basic philosophy of the culture. It claims that in the joules should perform the duty of their caste and thus avoid kharma



The incarnation of the god Vishnu who came to earth to help mortals who are struggling with their problems



One of the three major gods in Hinduism, Brahma is known as the creator. He is often depicted as red, with four bearded faces and four arms.



The second of the three major gods, Shiva is the destroyer. Shiva is the god of death, destruction and disease, but also reproduction, sexuality, and reproduction. He is often depicted as carrying a trident or having the form of a trident painted on his faces.



The last of the three major gods, Vishnu is the preserver. Vishnu is the god of love, benevolence, and forgiveness. His chief feature is his concern for humanity. He often appears on earth in various forms (i.e. Krishna).


Ram Mohan Roy

One of the earliest reformers in Hinduism, Roy was known as “the Father of Modern India”. He opposed suttee (practice in which an Indian widow was expected to be placed on the funeral pyre of her dead husband and be destroyed with his remains) and pressured the British government to outlaw the practice. He tended to be a monotheist and sought to suppress what he perceived to be polytheism and idolatry of Hinduism. He organized the Brahmo Samaj (The Society of God), which became a major force in the renewal of India.


Mohandas Gandhi

Originally trained as a lawyer in England, he would come to be the best-known Indian reformer of the twentieth century. He personally led many fasts and strikes against various British policies and was usually victorious. He was a vegetarian and stoutly defended the Indian practice of cow protection.



The most popular Hindu festival, celebrated during February/March to welcome Spring. It is dedicated to the god Krishna and was once a fertility ceremony. It also celebrates the destruction of demons.



The festival of lights, celebrated in November to welcome the New Year. It is connected to the goddess Kali and Lakshmi