Hinduism And Its Spread All Over the World
Hinduism is a religion and dharma, or everyday life. It is the world’s third largest religion, with more than 1.2 billion adherents, or almost 15 percent of the world’s population, considered Hindus. The word Hindu comes from a combination of two Sanskrit words Hatha and Adhyaya, which mean worship or observance of a god. Some historians and linguists believe that Hinduism actually developed from Jain and Buddhist teachings. Today’s modern Hinduism has incorporated most of what were passed on to it by its great religious leaders, such as Buddha, Krishna and Muhammad.
A majority of Hindus are of Hindu descent, though there are some converts to Hinduism from other religions. Hinduism believes in reincarnation and the concept of karma, or the cycle of rebirth and death. The main basic premise of Hinduism is that there is an unseen spirit realm, the “Shiva,” which rules over the visible world. Called the “Lord” or “Lord Ganesha,” Shiva is the chief officer in the Shiva temple, or temple where all pray. Each color represents one of the nine major branches of Shiva, and the color associated with the fifth element, earth, is blue.
The Hindu pantheon is divided into twenty-one heavens or dakinis, ruled by the four main lugalamas, or gods. There are also as many as five “kalas,” or centers, called the Brahma nadi, where Hindu deities are worshiped. Devotees of Hinduism believe that the soul of the mortal human being, referred to as “soul” or “ajiva,” has been assigned by the Supreme God, Brahma, to rule this earthly existence. To keep the soul in a virtuous state and away from the faults of the previous kalas, the Hindu devotional practice known as “asana” or “pranayama,” is performed. According to the Hindu system, all evil, sorrowful and negative emotion stems from the control of the “asana,” or disciplined movements, thought patterns and thoughts of a Hindu deity.
Like other religions and philosophies, Hinduism believes in an afterlife, known as krita. Hindus believe in reincarnation and believe in the concept of Karma, which is caused by bad deeds performed in the past. In the Hindu system, those who have passed away have their belongings taken by their karmic past, and the present incarnation is accounted for through these areas. According to the philosophy of Hinduism, there is no separation between the soul and the body, as the soul is one with the body throughout the entire lifetime. Therefore, all Hindus equally care for their family and friends.
Hinduism believes strongly in the concepts of karma and reincarnation, two of the most important tenets of traditional Hinduism. Karma is believed to be responsible for the actions and mistakes one commits in the past. Through sacrifice, one can expiate his deeds and at the same time receive benefits in this life. reincarnation is believed to be a normal process that takes place in every life, according to Hinduism. According to dharma, humans are punished or rewarded according to the number of good and evil deeds they perform throughout their lives.
Although most Hindus are bound to follow the teachings of their religion, some also choose to stray from the path of dharma. There are many deviant sects of Hinduism that are popular among the masses. Some of the most famous Hindu deviates include Jains, Keralites and Parsis. These sects believe in an ethical code known as ahimsa, which prohibits activities such as cruelty to animals, verbal abuse, hatred, violence and adultery.
Many Hindu people consider themselves “devout” and adhere to the principles of ahimsa. Although these sects are very popular with the masses, many other Hindu sects exist which have slightly different beliefs. Some of these include Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism and even Islam. Although all of these religions follow the basic doctrines of ahimsa, each has unique aspects that set them apart from the others.
Some Hindu scholars believe that the first scripture found in the Hindu religion is the Mahabaratha. This ancient Hindu text talks about the five Vedas or pillars of Hinduism. It describes the hierarchy of the demigods, who ruled over the lesser gods or spirits. Another important Hindu sacred text is the Charaka Samhita written by Hamsa (also called Bhagavad Gita), which describes the Vaishnava philosophy founded by Siva (the god of yoga).