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Hinduism Preview Main Idea / Reading Focus Basic Teachings of Hinduism

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Presentation on theme: "Hinduism Preview Main Idea / Reading Focus Basic Teachings of Hinduism"— Presentation transcript:

1 Hinduism Preview Main Idea / Reading Focus Basic Teachings of Hinduism
Sacred Texts and Practices Jainism

2 Hinduism Main Idea Reading Focus
The religion of Hinduism developed and evolved over a long time in India, giving rise to a variety of beliefs and practices and to other religions, including Jainism. Reading Focus What basic teachings do most Hindus share? What are the sacred texts and religious practices of Hinduism? What are the teachings of Jainism?

3 Basic Teachings of Hinduism
One of the world’s oldest religions, Hinduism, is practiced by most people in India today. Hinduism evolved over thousands of years and was influenced by the cultures and traditions of many peoples. However a few fundamental teachings are shared by nearly all Hindus. Among most basic tenets of Hinduism, belief in Brahman, eternal being that created, preserves world Brahman all-encompassing Many believe human mind incapable of understanding Brahman Hindus believe each person has atman, soul, aspect of Brahman Atman shapes personality, cannot be destroyed, even by death Devas, manifestations of Brahman, active in world, helping maintain order in nature Atman Three devas- Brahma, Vishnu, Siva -are particularly influential. Some believe in thousands; others worship only one as the true manifestation of Brahman.

4 Rebirth and Salvation Pattern of Life New Life Dharma
Hindus believe universe, everyone in it, part of continual pattern of birth, death, and rebirth After death atman reborn in process called reincarnation, or samsara New Life Nature of person’s new life shaped by karma—sum effect of deeds, actions Good karma, reincarnated to better station in life; bad karma, lower station in life Ultimate goal of human existence, moksha, escape from cycle of rebirth Dharma With moksha, atman leaves world, reunites fully with Brahman To achieve moksha is to fulfill one’s dharma—spiritual duties, obligations By fulfilling dharma, one creates good karma, breaks free from rebirth cycle

5 What is moksha, and how is it central to Hindu teachings?
Define What is moksha, and how is it central to Hindu teachings? Answer(s): escape from cycle of rebirth, reunion with Brahman; ultimate goal for Hindus; way to achieve moksha is to fulfill one's dharma

6 Sacred Texts and Practices
Much of Hinduism’s evolution stemmed from a number of sacred writings produced over centuries. Teachings, practices based on many texts, most sorted into one of three categories The Vedas Later writings inspired by the Vedas Sacred epics The Vedas, sacred hymns of praise, among earliest sacred texts of Hinduism Sacred Texts Name means “knowledge” in Sanskrit Hindus consider Vedas to contain eternal knowledge not written by humans, revealed to them by Brahman Parts of Vedas date back more than 3,000 years Considered core of Hinduism even today The Vedas

7 Upanishads Ramayana, Mahabharata
Sacred texts that built upon the Vedas appeared Some, such as Upanishads, also believed to have been revealed rather than written by people Upanishads philosophical reflections on the Vedas, dealing with nature of world, meaning of life Ramayana, Mahabharata Other sacred texts based on themes in the Vedas, but composed by sages, including two epic poems, Ramayana and Mahabharata Each tells story, reflects on living according to Vedic teachings Included in Mahabharata, most sacred of all Hindu texts, the Bhagavad Gita, addressing many aspects of Hindu belief, philosophy

8 Hindu Religious Practices
Hindu beliefs vary widely, religious practices vary as well; worship can take place anywhere At temples, priests might recite, read portions of the Vedas; image of a deva sometimes carried out of temple to people At home, food, drink, gifts offered for deva; meditation, silent reflection Worship To help meditate, Hindus practice series of integrated physical, mental exercises called yoga Yoga teaches people how to focus bodies, minds to aid meditation, help attain moksha Hindus also make pilgrimages to Ganges River to purify, remove bad karma Meditation, Pilgrimages

9 What types of sacred texts help shape Hindu beliefs?
Categorize What types of sacred texts help shape Hindu beliefs? Answer(s): Vedas, writings inspired by the Vedas, sacred epics

10 Jainism New Religion Ritual Unnecessary Nonviolence
500 BC, group of Hindus broke away, founded new religion called Jainism Led by teacher Mahavira, Jains thought most Hindus put too much emphasis on ritual Ritual Unnecessary Jains thought ritual unnecessary People could achieve moksha by giving up worldly things, carefully controlling actions Nonviolence Central to Jain teaching, idea of ahimsa, nonviolence Most Hindus also practiced ahimsa, but not to same extent Jains carefully avoid harming living creatures, are usually vegetarians

11 Other Traits Lifestyle Principles Jains promise to tell only truth
Avoid stealing Strive to eliminate greed, anger, prejudice, gossip from lives These things can prevent person from achieving moksha Most devout become monks, nuns, give up possessions Live outdoors, seek shelter only during rainy months Cover mouths with masks, sweep ground to avoid accidentally killing insects Lifestyle Most Jains not monks, nuns Pledge to uphold principles of ahimsa, have careers that do not involve harming of animals Jainism calls for periodic fasting, especially during festivals, on holy days; limiting worldly possessions Principles

12 What are the major principles of Jainism?
Find the Main Idea What are the major principles of Jainism? Answer(s): practice nonviolence; tell the truth; do not steal; try to eliminate greed, anger, prejudice, and gossip

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