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greg dahlen

Alumnus, academy of achievement

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is any one human being heavily associated with the founding of Hinduism?

In my mind there are five great world religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. Four of these have certain human beings heavily associated with their origin. Buddhism has Gautama Siddharta, the Buddha. Islam has Mohammed. Christianity has Jesus. Judaism has Moses, plus other figures like Abraham and David. But what about Hinduism, who is Hinduism's great central figure, if any? Or is it different from the others, and how, and why?

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    Jun 9 2013: Greg... technically a follower of Hinduism is called a Hindu. Broadly speaking... a Hindu believes not only in precepts of Hinduism but also Jainism, Buddhism and various other religions and sects that primarily relate to India.

    The Hindu word primarily originated from Muslim invaders that attacked India from West after crossing river Indus. As Muslims pronounced H for I... the people living east of river Indus were called Hindus and the religion followed by Hindus got the name Hinduism.
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      Jun 9 2013: So when you say Hinduism is not a religion or a set of rituals, but a way of life, Vijay, do Hindus attend weekly religious services like most religions, for example I am most familiar with the Christian practices where Christians go to church every Sunday morning, sing songs together, hear a sermon by a pastor, sometimes take communion.
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        Jun 10 2013: In Hinduism there never was a fixed pattern of praying to God Almighty! Some went to temples weekly but most prayed daily. If people could not go to a Temple every day... they made a small temple in the house with some idols of God. Every form of divinity in Hinduism was sacrosanct... people who could not afford... prayed to trees, rivers and mountains even in present times.

        In Hinduism... hearing a sermon from the pastor was not the order. Temples had no regular pastor to give sermons. Most temples had a Pujari who conducted religious rituals. Most temples did not have a permanent Pujari. Only at the time of prayers came the Pujari to conduct singing of hymns and bhajans in praise of God Almighty.

        Only on very special occasions a gathering of the community was organized where a learned person... well versed in religious scripts disseminated a religious discourse.

        In Hinduism whoever truly wanted to reach God was far away from rituals... path of religion! For a traveler of spiritual path God Almighty existed in our heart in miniscule form... as our soul atman, the spirit within! Such people always indulged in Satsanga (spiritual congregation) to discuss various aspects of spirituality including God.

        Spiritual congregations in present times were very rare as men of wisdom were rarely available. Even if a spiritual master was available... true followers of spirituality were barely seen, people competent enough to assimilate pearls of wisdom contained in Bhagavad Gita.

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