Hindu Heritage Study Program
 
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Hindu Heritage Study Program
 
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Principles and Practice of Hindu Dharma
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-HR 201.08
The Decline of the Society over the years and the time for Renaissance
The Problems and the Challenges for the Faith, for the Society and its Culture
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Lesson - E 07 :
Breakaway Groups in Eastern Religions
How the Leaders in any organized Faith held to the Power
Please see below
for Lesson - 02
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The reform movements invariably caused more splinters forming new groups, some due to new leadership struggle and due to real controversy in the interpretation of the faith and its teachings. Thus the movement by Martin Luther against the Roman Church started the Protestant movement leading to several other groups of Christianity. Islam also had several splinters. All these lead to fights for the power.

In the Socio-economic sphere also, Karl Marx theory of poor workers suffering under the rich Capitalist was conveniently used by Lenin and Stalin to bring the world under Russian dominance. Adolph Hitler tried the Aryan supremacy theory to bring the German race to the top.

In the East also, when Hindu priests were dominating the society with rituals, Gauthama Buddha of royal descent brought in Buddhism. Emperor Ashoka and other Maurya Kings carried the message to other countries in the east to create their dominance. Similarly, Jainism was spreading in parts of India through some kings influenced by the Jain priests. These could be interpreted as the shift of the religious power from the Priests class to the Warrior class and Merchants class.

However, these two faiths when got some popular support, Hindu renaissance gave modification to the original teachings to accept the variations in the thoughts, unlike the Semitic religions which remained stiff with their dogmatic attachment to the teaching. Thus they avoided splintering in Hindu following.

Nonviolence, vegetarianism and insistence of studying the philosophy rather than blind rituals to formed Deities were a good alternative to preserve the Hindu religion and its popularity in its land. Often the local faiths got modified due the alien influence to counteract the popularity of the new faiths. Sri Veda Vyasa's Vedantha theory and Sri Sankara's Adhvaitha and Jñana Yoga were a good reply to Buddhist and Jain Philosophy.

 
 

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Lesson - E 08 :
Mythology, Faith, Theology and Divine Law
The Paths of Theology and Mythology in East and West
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The Semitic [Western] Religions originating in the Middle East with Abraham and Moses followed religious edicts based on several Theological dogmas and Spiritual teachings of their Messiahs, leaving philosophy and mythology to the secular thinking. Most mythologies stayed with the ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman civilizations. The Eastern Religions like Hinduism originating in the "Saraswathi culture" and related Indo-Gangetic faiths continued their religious teachings and theologies along with the Eastern philosophy and historical treatises called "Ithihasas and Puranas." The philosophy was difficult to understand for the common people not educated in religious teachings and was difficult to follow though it was the essence of the faith. So, mythology and rituals become an essential part of the practice of the religion. It must be remembered that in all Ithihasas and Puranas, a basic philosophy is explained as their true inner meaning. They should not be taken as normal human behavior.

Hindus follow the "Dharma Sasthra" as the guidance of Divine law for their Faith. Manu Dharma Sasthra, though very popular by its name, was written for the Kritha or Sathya Yuga. Yajnavaalkya Smrithi is written as the law for Thretha Yuga. Many portions of Hindu Law codes of Independent India are based on this. Sanaka-Likhitha gave the Smrithis for Dwapara Yuga. The Divine Law codes or Smrithis of Sage Paraasara are written for Kali Yuga. Thus, the Religious and moral code and Divine laws are different for different ages even according to our ancient texts. We should not blindly adhere to any ancient religious edicts for modern times, but devise and follow moral codes suitable for the 21st century. We need new sets of Dharma Sasthra for the new Century. Most of us adhere to the rituals and prayers as the beginning as well as the end. The nasthikas like Charvaka denied His existence and lived for the pleasures of life. When we all live in this world of "three dimensions", it is often difficult to comprehend the "fourth dimension" of our Soul and the "Divine Supreme Truth" due to the limitations of our "Upathis" of the clothing of Avidhya or ignorance.

 
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Chapter - 8: Epilogue - Decline of a Culture and a Time for Renaissance - Lessons E 07 & E 08
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Lessons:~: E01 & E02 :-: E03 & E04 :-: E05 & E06 :-: E07 & E08 :-: E09 & E10 :-: E11 & E12 :~:
 
 
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