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Religion/ Festivals and Spirituality

Hinduism is a Religion and a Way of Life!

Hinduism – A Culture More than a Religion!

Hinduism does not have any one founder, and it does not have a Bible or a Koran to which controversies can be referred for resolution. Consequently, it does not require its adherents to accept any one idea. It is thus cultural, not creedal (meaning dogmatic!), with a history contemporaneous with the peoples (society) with which it is associated.

The word ‘contemporaneous’ means – the flexibility to accomodate the growing or changing needs of the society. Unlike ‘fundamentalism’ that is rigid, Hinduism does not impose anything compulsorily on its followers! In fact, even in the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna explains every aspect that needed to be explained to Arjuna – but, the choice was given to the no longer ‘disillusioned’ warrior Arjuna to accept or not the teachings of Lord Krishna. That is the essence of Hinduism – it is contemporaneous!

Writings we now categorise as Hindu scriptures include not just books relating to spirituality but also secular pursuits like science, medicine and engineering. This is another reason why it defies classification as a religion per se. Further, it cannot be claimed to be essentially a school of metaphysics. Nor can it be described as ‘other worldly’. In fact, one can almost identify Hinduism with a civilization that is flourishing even now.

This aspect – Why Hinduism is referred to as a Way of Life – is well explained by Swamiji in this video attached.

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About Raman Ramamurthy

I am a Management consultant, an avid reader, play Lawn tennis in my leisure time and love Music. Presently, I am settled in India along with my wife and my son.

Discussion

5 thoughts on “Hinduism is a Religion and a Way of Life!

  1. I am myself guilty of this quote “a way of life, not a religion”. I really liked Swamiji’s clear description in pointing out the hypocrisy of this statement. Thank you for sharing this video. Nirad Chaudhari (the anglophile) was the one who liked saying this a lot. “Hinduisim is not a religion, but a way of life”.
    Another quote that I have recently liked from Swami Dayananda Saraswati ( a disciple and then later a contemporary of Swami Chinmayananda) goes as follows, and I paraphrase, “Christians believe there is only one God, we believe this ONLY God!” I keep saying it over and over… He also has a cool story about the meaning of “Hare Rama”.. and I can relate that sometime.
    Peace

    Like

    Posted by avalok ishwar | December 28, 2010, 1:52 am
  2. Want to correct an error in typing –
    Another quote that I have recently liked from Swami Dayananda Saraswati ( a disciple and then later a contemporary of Swami Chinmayananda) goes as follows, and I paraphrase, “Christians believe there is only one God, we believe there is ONLY God!” (implying that all is Ishwara-mayam)

    Like

    Posted by avalok ishwar | December 28, 2010, 1:54 am
  3. Rightly said….All is Ishwara-mayam! The observer and the observed is the same.’Self’ is only Reality being objectivied. Swami Chinmayananda is a graduate in Law and English literature and he worked with National Herald newspaper in Kerala as a Press reporter prior to his efforts to expose pseudo Spiritual leaders of his time.The best part of works is showcased in his running commentary of Srimad Bhagavad Gita! It is strange that some in the mission refer him to be Krishna-born; but I am an ardent admirer of his writing and oratory! After his passing away in 1993, the gap is not bridged as yet. I visited the Mission at Powai in 1986 for the first time and I still feel that one day I will be rendering my service to humankind through this mission! Swami Tejomayananda is heading the mission now.

    Like

    Posted by rambuna | December 28, 2010, 9:53 am
  4. Very beautiful the way he explains religion and it’s need to adjust with the changing times. Great video.

    Like

    Posted by Lotus lady | February 22, 2011, 11:32 pm

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