Free Essay

Hinduism Marriage

In: Religion Topics

Submitted By sands98
Words 2083
Pages 9
The ritual of marriage is significant in Hinduism and Christianity (Catholic). Hinduism is based on achieving liberation from rebirth as an ongoing struggle by fulfilling one's dharma according to the class in the caste system which one belongs to. In contrast, Christianity (Catholic) is based on the interpretation of the Word of God in the form of tradition. Through shared elements in weddings such as the importance of marriage, the involvement of the witness, the significance of the groom clasping the bride's hand, the exchange of vows and the underlying meaning of the symbol of marriage, one can argue that the theology of Hinduism and Catholicism are revealed.
In the Hindu and Catholic traditions there are different perspectives concerning the importance of marriage. Hindu marriages are greatly rooted in the nature of man. Vasudha Narayanan states, "A man has an obligation in life to marry, raise children, and fulfill his debts to his community" (90). Thus, marriage becomes a responsibility, as producing sons in order to preserve the family line and culture, is highly regarded in Hinduism. In order for a male to fulfill his dharma and escape suffering from rebirth, he should attain the three major religious paths which are karma-marga, jnana-marga, and bhakti-marga (Bhogal: Hinduism II). Through performing rituals, priestly teachings, gaining knowledge from the Upanishads and expressing devotion to a god, the aim is moksha, liberation from suffering. Through marriage a man can achieve his dharma and fully perform his religious obligations (Narayanan 90). Hence, a man without a wife is unable to perform his duties and thus a man is simply a half, who must be completed by a woman. According to Vasudha Narayanan, marrying women in one's own class is important, thus acceptable if the male partner is a higher class (48). The emphasis on the male partner being of higher class is a reflection of a woman's unequal role and status. A woman, however, is obliged to get married and be faithful to her husband. Vasudha Narayanan explains, "A Hindu wife's dharma involves sexual fidelity as well as total obedience" (Narayanan 98). Women's status is exemplified in the caste. Furthermore, fidelity on the part of a woman is a concrete characteristic of marriage and not her own free will. Marriage in the Hindu tradition is seen as a duty in order to fulfill one's dharma, as opposed to the Catholic tradition that views marriage as a holy sacrament.
The majority of Christians view sacraments such as marriage, as rituals that are performed by Christians as symbols of their loyalty and faith in Christ. Baptism and Eucharist are vital sacraments that are performed early in life and are present during the sacrament of marriage. "For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ" (Gal. 3:27). Hence, the sacrament of baptism is an initiation into the church and the sacrament of the Eucharist is a "re-enactment of Jesus' last meal with his disciples" (Oxtoby 218). Through the sacrament of Baptism, God is able to call his followers and through the sacrament of the Eucharist, the Christians are reminded of Jesus' sacrifice of his life, redeeming their sins in order to be accepted in the Kingdom of God. The sacrament of marriage is a sign of the union of Christ and His Church, a union which is permanent, resembling the union between a husband and wife (Paris 51). The means through which Jesus is faithful to His Church expresses the same relationship between a husband and wife. Fidelity is a crucial component in marriage and just as Christ could in no way leave his Church, no man could leave his wife or wife leave her husband (Paris 51). In addition, a marriage permits a couple to produce offspring and educate their children in the Catholic faith. Catholicism emphasizes Jesus' teachings of charity, love, faith and hope; however, chastity is also a vow that is to be followed by Christians. Through the sacrament of marriage, the couple is able to procreate without being viewed as a sin but being viewed as a reward of marriage, as long as each person is faithful. Moreover, marriage as a sacrament, emphasizes the teachings of Jesus which is to love others, and through loving others, one will be closer to God, and thus be accepted in the Kingdom of heaven. Along with the dissimilar view of the value of marriage, the witnesses involved in a Hindu and Catholic wedding are different. The sacred fire, agni, god of fire is the witness in a Hindu wedding ceremony. The fire represents a witness to the marriage of the bride and the groom and without it a wedding would be invalid (Narayanan 93). The fire, agni is seen as a guardian of morality. According to Vasudha Narayanan, "Agni, the god of fire, is seen as a messenger between human beings and the deities because offerings were placed in fire to be carried to other worlds" (24). The worldview of the Hindu religion is that gods are praised, prayed to and given offerings as a sign of sacrifice. Through offerings and prayers that are made and said before the fire, such as fried grain and verses from the Upanishads and the Vedas, illustrates a sense of devotion to a god. In fulfilling one's dharma, the bhakti-marga which is the way of devotion to a god must be achieved. The entire wedding ceremony is centered around the fire. Thus, the sacred fire is significant in Hinduism, and is present in all rituals in order for one to fulfill one's dharma and achieve liberation. In contrast to the sacred fire as a witness in a Hindu wedding, the best man and the maid of honour are witnesses of the bride and groom in a Catholic wedding. The witnesses' duties are to sign the registers, approving the union. However, the importance of performing the wedding in a Church before God as another witness is very much significant in the Catholic tradition. In the gospel of Matthew, Jesus says to Peter, "I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church" (Matt. 16:18). The Church symbolizes the house of God and through the Church, one can reach the Kingdom of God for salvation. The Catholic idea of witnesses to a marriage in the house of God is sacred and traditional. A related element in a Hindu and Catholic wedding is the linking of hands between the bride and the groom. In a Hindu ceremony, the father of the bride gives his daughter to the groom who holds onto the bride's hand, while the ends of their garments tied, he leads her around the fire, taking seven steps known as the sapta padi. The groom leading the bride around the fire infers the dominant position of men and the inferior position of women in the caste system. The caste system has created inequality amongst males and females, a belief that has found expression in the ritual of marriage.
In comparison, during a catholic wedding ceremony, the priest asks the couple to join hands signifying their friendship (Paris 100). The linking of hands is seen as a union of love between the couple. The importance of love is emphasized in Jesus' teachings which state, "This is my commandment: love one another as I have loved you" (John 15:12). Thus, by following Jesus' commandment, one can further one's own belief and faith in God. Its significance in a Catholic wedding is to express the love that is shared between a bride and a groom, who represent the love that is shared between God and his people through the gesture of holding hands. Another resemblance of a Hindu wedding to a Catholic wedding is the exchanging of vows. The sapta padi is the most dramatic part of a Hindu wedding ceremony. The seven steps taken symbolize the comradeship between the husband and wife, which creates a life long bond. The priest utters the mantras, chanting statements that are repeated by the bride and the groom (Narayanan 93). The words that are being recited are significant to the position and status of women. They promote togetherness and wholeness, and thus a wife is not considered as "a man's possession, chattel, or obedient servant" (Narayanan 93). The sense of wholeness defines a husband and a wife together, creates "one" individual, and the wife's duty is to assist her husband in fulfilling his dharma. Although the meaning of the vows is similar to a Catholic wedding, the consent and acceptance of marriage is not directly expressed between the bride and the groom but between the father of the bride and the groom. For example, the kanya dana is when the father gives away his daughter to the groom and recites "This is Sita, my daughter; she will be your partner in dharma" (Narayanan 93). The importance of the father giving away his daughter to the groom is to display men's authoritative role in the Hindu tradition, and thus emphasizing a woman's subservient and obedient position. Therefore, consent is not freely expressed between the bride and the groom in the Hindu tradition, though it is in the Catholic tradition. The exchange of vows between the bride and the groom is seen as a mutual consent that both the bride and the groom take each other freely and completely for life. Hence, Catholicism promotes equality between all people, "there does not exist among you Jew or Greek, slave or freeman, male or female. All are one in Christ Jesus" (Gal. 3:28). The exchange of vows emphasizes the value of love and faith between the bride and the groom, which is rooted in the theology of Catholicism. Through loving others and having faith in Jesus, the couple will be able to experience God. It serves as a promise made between the bride and the groom and these promises are made to God.
The last aspect that will be examined is the symbol of marriage in the Hindu and Catholic traditions. In a Hindu wedding the symbol of marriage, is the mangala sutra that is given to the bride. The mangala sutra is a piece of jewelry that is worn around the neck to represent the status of a married woman. "A married woman always wears it around her neck all her life, or until her husband dies" (Narayanan 92). A woman's status is further determined by the mangala sutra as a reminder of her dharma which is to be faithful and subservient to her husband. However, the groom does not receive a corresponding symbol of marriage during the ceremony, but in the caste system a married man wears a double thread around his neck (Narayanan 92). The fact that the groom does not receive an equivalent symbol of marriage like the bride can be traced back to the caste system which views men as being superior to women.
Conversely, the symbol of marriage in a Catholic wedding is a ring. In a Catholic wedding the ring is transferred from the groom to the bride as a sign of love for each other and thus, expressing their love to god. The ring is a symbol of the eternal love in a marriage, a common theme in the theology of Catholicism which states that one should love others the way that one loves Jesus. The eternal love represented by a ring, is the unconditional love that Jesus has for his people. Hinduism views marriage as a ritual to fulfill one's dharma in order to achieve liberation from rebirth, while Christianity (Catholic) views marriage as a sacrament performed by many Christians as a symbol of their faith in Jesus Christ. Hinduism and Christianity (Catholic) are often regarded as very different; however, there are certain cultural norms such as the involvement of the witness, the significance of the groom clasping the bride's hand, the exchange of vows and the symbol of marriage that are present in the two religions. Whether these cultural norms are borrowed or derived from one another is not important, rather, it is our necessity to have these aspects that are worth mentioning. These universal archetypes reflect our need for a community, values, a sense of belonging, long lasting traditions and relationships. The ritual of marriage reinforces the greatest values of organized religions.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Catholicism and Hinduism: Stands on Gender, Sexuality and Violence

...Catholicism and Hinduism: Stands on Gender, Sexuality and Violence 1. Introduction This essay aims to compare and contrast specific aspects of Catholicism and Hinduism, more specifically their stands on gender, sexuality and violence. Catholicism and Hinduism are two of the world’s greatest religions; the former originated in the west and spread across the world whereas the latter is followed primarily in the Indian subcontinent and to some extent in the Southeast Asian states. Catholicism and Hinduism are essentially different in their approach towards god and religion; Catholicism believing that there is one deity, and Hinduism on the contrary recognizes the existence of many. Two essential points of Christianity, particularly sin and salvation, aren’t present in Hinduism. The two religions nevertheless have several points of similarity. Hindus worship a number of gods and Catholics worship several saints; both of them make use of the burning of candles and incense before the statues for purposes of worship. Both religions make use of images, icons, music and rituals. Catholics chant prayers, whilst Hindus chant mantras; both of them have tremendously wealthy temples, full of statues and golden artefacts and make use of priesthoods that intermediate between humans and gods. Such similarities and dissimilarities notwithstanding, these two religions have distinct and deeply entrenched religious ethos and epistemologies that govern their practice and the attitudes,......

Words: 1880 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Hinduism

...Hinduism Kierra Williams REL/133 June 5, 2012 Jefferey Hineline Hinduism Hinduism is such a complex religion it is a very difficult topic for individuals to study. The fact that Hindus have no specific God and they have so many different belief systems made it difficult for me to interpret. Hinduism is considered one of the world’s largest religions’s and was created in the Indian subcontinent. Hinduism is not just a religion; it is more so the way of life. It has its own beliefs and traditions. It is a group formed of diverse traditions and has no specific supernatural being or no single holy text. According to Huxley (2010) “Hinduism unites the worship of many gods with a belief in a single divine reality” (p. 78). Hindus also believes that on the death of the body the soul passes to or is reborn in another body, which is reincarnation. Sense Hindus have a strong believe in reincarnation they do not determine death as the end of life or a fear, instead they acknowledge death as a resurrection of the soul. They do not focus death on fear. Hinduism is such a powerful religion that it has persuaded the world with its informed beliefs. This particular religious group has a freedom of practice and belief. Hinduism has been a huge influence amongst the world for many years. It is a known religion that has created practices such as Yoga, Tantra, Karma, and so on. It is a religious tradition that could never really be categorized with any specific belief system for......

Words: 910 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

India Issues

...birthplace of Hinduism and Buddhism. A huge majority — 84 percent — of the population identifies as Hindu. There are many variations of Hinduism, and four predominant sects — Shaiva, Vaishnava, Shakteya and Smarta Slide 3 Political Life -The national system of government is a liberal democratic federal republic, making India the largest democracy in the world. The country is divided for administrative purposes into twenty–eight linguistically–based states, plus a further seven small "Union Territories" administered directly by the central government in New Delhi, the national capital. Social Walfar-Traditionally the family was responsible for the care of the poor, incapacitated, elderly, and very young. For rural populations this is still largely true. In recent decades, underfunded state governments, often with international help, have tried to create more jobs for the poor as a direct way of helping them. Beyond this, welfare organizations have helped, but they are largely private and often religious foundations with relatively little financing. The population in need of social welfare support is too vast for the facilities that are available, and these people are disproportionately concentrated in the cities Marriage-Although the different regions and religions have considerable variety in marital arrangements, the arranged marriage is a traditional feature of virtually every community; today, except among the urban middle classes, it still is widely practiced.......

Words: 350 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Univerisy of Phoenix

...Hinduism 1 The Meaning, Liberations and Influences of Hinduism Kijafa Wright HUM130 August 26, 2010 Sean – David J. McGoran Hinduism 2 In this paper, the religion of Hinduism will be research and explained in different areas. I will research and discuss what makes of the Hinduism religion. This paper will present an explanation of what the cultural that have made influences to the land where Hinduism was start off. Also people will learn the about the religions earthy desire of liberations. “Hinduism is made of a variety of religious paths. (Fisher, 2005)” A set of traditions and beliefs are what make up the Hinduism religion. According to Living Religions chapter 3 (Fisher, 2005), “Hinduism consists of philosophical and metaphysical elements, devotional aspects as well as ritual aspects with a feature as a way of life.” Nonetheless, there are like several religious groups. “The majority of Hinduism is henotheistic religions that recognize a single......

Words: 870 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Comparison of Jainism and Hinduism

...Jainism and Hinduism REL212 – World Religions July 28, 2013 Comparison of Jainism and Hinduism The two religions that we are comparing are going to be Jainism and Hinduism. The origin of Jainism is India which was formed in 550 BCE (Gunn). It is one of the oldest religions in the world and is taught by Tirthankaras which are also known as Jina. The origin of Hinduism is also India. It has no founders and the earliest forms date to 1500 BC or earlier. Three of Jainism foundational spiritual beliefs are non-violence (ahimsa), non-absolutism (anekanta), and non-possession (apraigraha). The first foundational spiritual belief is the principle of non-violence, which is strong in Jain teachings. It embraces the well-being of all animals that are visible and invisible. According to Akaranga Sutra, IV: Lesson 1, it says: one should not injure, subjugate, enslave, torture or kill any animal, living being, organism or sentient being (Fisher). The second, non-absolutism, is another principle in Jainism that encourages avoiding anger and judgment. A person has to remain open-minded by remembering that any issue can be seen from many angles, all partially true (Fisher). Last but not least, non-possession is a principle that teaches to let go of things and people. It states that acquiring material things possess us by driving our emotions. The more a person is attached to worldly things the more they are likely to commit sin to obtain that possession (Shah). In......

Words: 932 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Elements of Religious Traditions Paper

...person is swayed by the people who raised them. It could have been a experience that is traumatic which can push someone to follow a different life in terms of religion. The everyday lives of all people are made up of rituals and traditions. Christians worship God, who they believe is the creator of the entire world. Muslims who worship Mohammed, in which they believe is a prophet from God, Buddhist believe in Buddha, and Hindus believe in Brahma. This paper will explain how religious traditions describe and encourage the following relationships: with the divine, with sacred time, with sacred space or the natural world, and with each other. It will also identify key critical issues in the study of religion with specific examples on Hinduism such as their traditions and beliefs, which I am familiar with. People around the world worship something, depending on their beliefs. Relationships A spiritual relationship with God, gods, spirits, or nature in which humans have had since the dawn of time of the natural world. Humans looked at nature as something to be sacred, as well as something to be worshiped with the divine. Native religions which are called animism, believe that everything in the world is alive, such as: trees, animals and humans, which are living things in the natural world. The relationship of the natural world also consist of the mountains, the sun, the motion of water and the moon which is considered the same in a animistic view. There is no......

Words: 1123 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Sources of Hinduism

...Sources of Hinduism: Hindu ethics is taught through Hindu scriptures, for example * Vedas * Upanishads * Smriti * Bhagavad-Gita * Ramayana Importance of Hindu Ethics .  * Human rights in Hinduism:  "If by 'human rights' one means minority rights, then Hindu society can be said to have a human rights tradition, for it has always had a way of incorporating the poor and socially ostracized into the social whole."1 The caste system can be understood as a reflection of dharma or "the moral order" in Hindu society, which at its best maintains "reciprocal relationships of mutual economic and social benefit. Each group respects the rights and dignity of the others." * Rights of Women in Hinduism: 1. The Hindu Woman has no right to divorce her husband.   2. She has no property or inheritance rights.   3. Choice of partner is limited because she can only marry within her own caste; moreover her horoscope must match that of the intending bridegroom.  4. The family of the girl has to offer an enormous dowry to the bridegroom/family.   5. If her husband dies she should commit Sati (being cremated with her dead husband). Since today's law forbids Sati, society mainly punishes her in other "holy" ways.   6. She cannot remarry.   7. The widow is considered to be a curse and must not be seen in public. She cannot wear jewelry or colorful clothes. (She should not even take part in her children's marriage!)  ......

Words: 445 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

World Religions Report

...World Religions Report Brandy Marples HUM/130 September 4th, 2011 Timothy Albert World Religions Report Hinduism refers to the civilization if the Hindus, the inhabitants of the land of the Indus river. This term was introduced in about 1830 and it denotes the Indian civilization of about the last 2000 years by British writers. In the last century of the second millennium BC was when the Indo-European people settled in India and their religion was Vedism and Hinduism evolved from that. By incorporating all forms of worship and belief Hinduism does not necessitate the selection or elimination of any. Hinduism does not have a beginning or a founder it is both a civilization and congregation of religion, there is no central authority, hierarchy or organization. They believe in an infinite, eternal and all-embracing principal. Hinduism is one of the most sacred religions in the world. There is no other religion that compares to it. Hindus do not try to push their religion on anyone nor do they feel their religion is better than anyone else’s. They are a very nonviolent religion and do not discriminate. Hinduism has been the main religion for Indian people for centuries, so it is vital to the place it was originated in. Sikhism, Islamism and Christianity are the other religions practiced in India but Hinduism is the biggest religion practiced out there. The temple I visited was a Hindu Temple down the street from my house in Scottsdale Arizona. The actual name of......

Words: 2199 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Hinduism Paper

...Hinduism Paper HUM/130 March 17, 2013 Hinduism Paper Hinduism, otherwise known as Sanatana Dharma is one of the oldest religions in the world. Sometimes it is defined as the religion of India because of its origins in the Indus River region (Tri State Hindu Temple Newburgh, n.d.). Hinduism is a difficult religion to define because there is no founding father, no main religious book, and a multiplicity of deities. It arose out of a combination of religious, philosophical, and cultural practices so varied that there is no central tradition. It has evolved from the diverse Indian cultures for over four thousand years. This could explain why the matter of listing all things that Hindus believe in or even what all Hindus do is not a simple matter. Nevertheless there are some basic tenants of Hinduism and some key Hindu scriptures that help us to understand the concepts and beliefs which are held by many Hindus in a somewhat unifying principle. Central Themes in Hinduism The desire for liberation from earthly existence could be consider the ultimate goal of a Hindu. This desire to exit the cycle of birth, death and rebirth is directly related to the concept of reincarnation which is a major cornerstone of Hinduism. Reincarnation is the belief that when the soul leaves the dead body it enters a new one, living again and again in countless bodies whether human, animal, or plant. The key is that the self remains the same. The ultimate goal is to end the suffering of......

Words: 1129 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Traditional and Nontraditional Culture Paper

...Traditional and Nontraditional Culture Paper By PSY 450 Michele Wagner April 14, 2014 Traditional and nontraditional culture paper America versus Indian culture Around the world, there are numerous cultures that are traditional and nontraditional. Traditional cultures are rules, beliefs, values of rural and non-industrialized group in which their practice is very strict and are non-willing for any social change or innovation (Shiraev & Levy, 2010). Nontraditional cultures are grounded on more modern views and are willing for any modification mostly base on technology, science and media (Shiraev & Levy, 2010. Comparing and contrasting American and Indian cultures would facilitate to identify the traditional and nontraditional values, belief and behaviors among these two cultures Similar Values in Indian and American Cultures Despite being on opposite sides of the world, some values are shared between Indian and American culture. One similar value is the importance placed on religion or faith. While religion is more prominent in Indian culture, it is also present in American culture as it’s seen in the constant battles for keeping the name “God” in the Pledge of Allegiance, in the phrase “In God We Trust,” on American currency, and open discussion of faith. On the other hand, in India pictures and statues of deities are commonly seen, worship takes place openly, and religious expression in fashion and accessories is more prevalent. Another shared value......

Words: 1666 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Hinduism

...| | |Hinduism | |Tami Vansandt | | | |Axia College of University of Phoenix | |04-14-2009 | | | The importance of absolute truth, according to Hindu philosophy God is the absolute reality. Hinduism is not a set religion; it is beliefs, teachings, guidance, that have grown over a period of time. While there are different sects of Hinduism all follow the ancient scripts called the Vedas. These are an ancient hymns comprised of four parts. There are the Samhita, which worship deities, and which directions on how to sacrifice to the deities are called......

Words: 655 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Hinduism

...Hinduism 1 The Meaning, Liberations and Influences of Hinduism Kijafa Wright HUM130 August 26, 2010 Sean – David J. McGoran Hinduism 2 In this paper, the religion of Hinduism will be research and explained in different areas. I will research and discuss what makes of the Hinduism religion. This paper will present an explanation of what the cultural that have made influences to the land where Hinduism was start off. Also people will learn the about the religions earthy desire of liberations. “Hinduism is made of a variety of religious paths. (Fisher, 2005)” A set of traditions and beliefs are what make up the Hinduism religion. According to Living Religions chapter 3 (Fisher, 2005), “Hinduism consists of philosophical and metaphysical elements, devotional aspects as well as ritual aspects with a feature as a way of life.” Nonetheless, there are like several religious groups. “The majority of Hinduism is henotheistic religions that recognize a single......

Words: 870 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Religion Comparison

...Buddhism vs. Hinduism Name Institution How, where and when encountered Hinduism and Buddhism? First, you can start by saying that Buddhism arose from Hinduism. Both the religions have many similarities. Hinduism is the oldest religion in the world and originated in India. Hinduism is an ancient religious belief in India, and it is not known that exactly how this religion emerged. The Hindus call their religion “the eternal law.” Hinduism has emerged over millennia of time and is a mixture of thinking of different people. The majority of the people are probably aware that Aryan defeated the first people who lived in Indus sometime during the 1700s f.Kr and when the two societies merged they gave rise to a new way of thinking and lifestyle (Molloy, 2013). It is said that Buddhism emerged around 500 BC in the Himalayas and penetrated to the Indian plains. According to the legend, Prince Gautama Siddharta was born in the holy city of Banaras, now called Varanasi. The prince later went out into the world to seek the answer to the question of why there are sufferings in the world. After seven years of searching and thinking, he came to enlightenment and turned into a Buddha, the informed. He came on as long as a man asking for more and more; they will there continue to be reborn to more suffering. King Ashoka ruled over northern India during 200-century BC - AD, and he played a key role in spreading Buddhism in East Asia. Hinduism has a large number of sacred writings, including...

Words: 933 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Rel/133 Week 5 Team Paper

...Introduction Hinduism is a major world religion that originated on the Indian subcontinent and consists of several schools of varied rituals, philosophies and beliefs. The name, Hinduism, is actually coined by British journalists and writers in the early 19th century to refer to the tradition of texts and practices. It is believed that Hinduism is now the worlds oldest and widely practiced religions known today having dated back to around the 3rd or 2nd millennium bce. When the term “Hinduism” was first published to describe the religion, it has since been met with mixed reactions with some rejecting it in favor of indigenous formulations. Some have taking to the term “Vedic Religion” as a way to refer to the ancient texts known as the “Vedas”. The majority of those who practice the religion do accept the term “Hinduism”. Hinduism and Buddhism Despite the labeling and acceptance thereof, Hinduism has managed to stay as a thriving religion with various influences in many cultures. Its believed that Hinduism and Buddhism share a common bond. The Buddha was born to a Hindu family and some still argue that because of this, Buddhism is an offshoot of Hinduism and that the Buddha was a part of the Hindu pantheon, a view which is not accepted by many Buddhists. Long ago, Hindu tradition accepted the Buddha as an incarnation of Vishnu. There were many that didn’t believe that Buddha’s teachings and enlightenment were of any relation to the Hindu beliefs though. Despite the......

Words: 2177 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Hinduism

...Hinduism is the world’s oldest living major religion and is comprised of around one billion followers, making it the world’s third largest religion behind Christianity and Muslim. It is practiced predominantly in the Indian sub-continent where it originated. What makes Hinduism so different from other major religions is that it has no single founder and is a mixture of religious, philosophical, and cultural ideas. Hinduism can be considered more of a way of life than an actual religious belief system as we know it in the West. Hinduism is a complex and diverse religion. There is a huge variety of traditions ranging from small groups to large religious movements consisting of millions of followers. Hinduism allows for an unrestricted freedom to believe and worship whatever on desires and allows for separation of a distinct set of beliefs. Another factor that makes Hinduism different from other religions is its concept of god or gods. The concept of God completely depends on the individual, one may practice monotheism, polytheism, or even henotheistic. Some may believe that there are millions of gods while others are devoted to a single god but accept the fact that there are other gods. Although there may be many gods, most Hindus believe there is one supreme creator and that is Brahman. Brahman is an entity believed to inhabit every portion of reality, dimension, and existence throughout the entire world and universe. There are numerous different sects in Hinduism and......

Words: 765 - Pages: 4