Hinduism is one of the most complicated religions in the world. Perhaps, its complexity is its core pillar that has managed to keep it going. This is due to assumptions that it has successfully managed to salvage itself from the onslaught of organizations and some religions for centuries despite their endless efforts to confuse its followers. Hinduism is the most predominant religion in the subcontinent of India. Among several other traditions, Hinduism encompasses traditions like Vaishnavism, shaivism and Srauta. In Hinduism, there is a plethora of views and an interesting blend of multicultural religious practices as well as the diverse principles that are not practiced in any other religion. It is believed that Hinduism lacks a specific unifying system of ideas and beliefs.
As a phenomenon, Hinduism embodies a broad spectrum of practices and beliefs that are akin to pantheism and paganism. In Hinduism, culture and religion are almost interchangeable terms. Therefore, emotive expressions like Dharma or Bhakti depicts its essential aspects as a religion. Moksha, reincarnation, Dharma, idol warship and Karma are some of the beliefs in Hinduism. However, Hinduism as a religion has its moral values. Some of those moral ideals observed by Hinduism are: Compassion, generosity, purity, truthfulness, friendship and non-violence Read Rosinsky chapter 2.
In the current world, the enigma of Hinduism goes on successfully. Despite the fact that millions of Hindu immigrants are spread all over the world and majority of them being adapted to westernization, they have managed to acknowledge and honor their traditional values in matters of their spiritual conduct, religious and their social conduct.
Hindus believe in one God but also many. They believe that the one God becomes many and the many must begin their journey towards the same one God as a process of fulfilling the process of creation.
According to Hinduism, human is divine in nature. The religion also teaches that the basic purpose of man is to find the divineness in him. Hinduism believes that ahamkar or ego is the primary cause of all kinds of suffering. Therefore it teaches that in order for human beings to avoid suffering, they must cease to be in their egoistic selves and identify themselves with their limitless inner selves. Unquestionably, Hinduism believes that the universe is an illusion or Maya. This fact is attached to the cause of birth and death. It therefore means that whenever one has overcome such illusion by withdrawal and detachment of senses, he/she qualifies for self-realization. Hinduism believes deeply in rebirth or reincarnation. This means that people live because of their ignorance and also the play of Maya before the attainment of liberation.
In Hinduism, all humans have souls and they are equally crucial in the scheme of creation. Therefore, all souls evolve continuously until they attain their final freedom. This means that man is but one stage in that evolution of life as well as the soul’s upward journey to such liberation. This is the fact behind most Hindus choosing to remain vegetarians for the rest of their lives.
Hinduism embraces God’s incarnation concept. In this concept, God is a dynamic and active principle who descends directly into the consciousness of the earth and assumes a human form purposely to protect the poor and the weak and at the same time re-establish the world order (Lynne 147).
Hinduism forbids the forceful conversion of people from faith to faith. It therefore gives an individual freedom to choose where to belong. In Hinduism if one opts to change to a religion of his/her choice, the decision is regarded to be a person’s inner choice. Therefore tempting or forcing him to change is not allowed. Unlike other religions, Hinduism prohibits the teaching of its scripture to individuals who are not inclined to learn and practice them. One significant thing about Hinduism is that a man’s soul has been separated from God and it is therefore subjected to illusion, therefore awaiting the rejoining process with its God. Everyone operates on his free will and nobody is forced to join Hindu. This is coupled with the fact that some day, in some birth, he will become aware of who he is or rather what he is. In Hinduism, whatever transpires in between life is a simply a divine play.
Rosinsky, Natalie. World Religions: Hinduism. Jakarta: C. P.P. 1990. Print.
Lynne, Gibson. Modern World Religions: Hinduism. U.K.: OUP. 2002. Print.