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World Cultures - South Asia - Hinduism

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  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia Need to add atman? Aum ( ॐ ) is the sacred symbol of Hinduism, and is prefixed and sometimes suffixed to all Hindu mantras and prayers. Its contains a deep symbolic message; which is considered as divine primordial vibration of the Universe which represents all existence, encompassing all of nature into the One Ultimate Reality.
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ1
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia Ask students what some of these are before you reveal them in unit notes! UNQ2
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia A Hindu believes that after you die, you briefly visit heaven or hell (depending on karma) and then assume life in a new life form - either higher or lower.
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ3 Brahman – soul of universe; To a Hindu, this is a Monotheistic religion! To many Christians, Muslims, Jews, this is seen as a polytheistic religion
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia Vishnu is best known through his ten avatars (incarnations), which appear on earth when there is disorder in the world. Rama and Krishna, whose stories are told in the Epics and the Puranas, are the most popular incarnations of Vishnu by far. {3} The ten incarnations of Vishnu are: Matsya (fish) Kurma (turtle) Varaha (boar) Narasimha (man-lion) Vamana (dwarf) Parashurama (warrior-priest) Rama (prince) Krishna (cow-herd) Buddha (sage) Kalki (horseman, who has not yet appeared) http://www.religionfacts.com/hinduism/deities/vishnu.htm
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia Read parts of these selections to students! Brahman – soul of universe Brahmā is traditionally depicted with four heads and four faces and four arms. With each head he continually recites one of the four Vedas . He is often depicted with a white beard (especially in North India), indicating the near eternal nature of his existence. He is shown as having four arms, with none holding a weapon, unlike most other Hindu Gods . One of his hands is shown holding a scepter in the form of a spoon, which is associated with the pouring of holy ghee or oil into a sacrificial pyre - indicating the fact that Brahmā is the lord of sacrifices. Another of his hands holds a water-pot (sometimes depicted as a coconut shell containing water). The significance of the water is that it is the initial, all-encompassing ether in which the first element of creation evolved . Brahmā also holds a string of prayer beads that he uses to keep track of the Universe's time. He also is shown holding the Vedas, and sometimes, a lotus flower. Shiva is called the Destroyer (of evil), but has also the aspect of regeneration. As destroyer he is dark and terrible, appearing as a naked ascetic accompanied by a train of hideous demons, encircled with serpents and necklaces of skulls. As auspicious and reproductive power, he is worshipped in the form of the shivling or shiva linga (lingam). Shiva is depicted as white, with a dark-blue throat, with several arms and three eyes. He carries a trident and rides a white bull. His consort is Parvati (Devi). Vishnu , whose name means "All-Pervading," is the protector of the world and the restorer of moral order ( dharma ). He is peaceful, merciful, and compassionate. To Vaisnavites, Vishnu is the Supreme Lord.    Vishnu is often pictured with his consort, Lakshmi (also called Sri), and usually has four arms. Each hand holds an emblem of his divinity: the conch, discus, club, and lotus. A curl of hair on his chest signifies his immortality, and he wears the jewel Kaustubha around his neck. He is usually depicted with a dark complexion, as are his incarnations. Vishnu is often shown reclining or asleep as he awaits the next annihilation and renewal of the world.
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia Left – Brahma Bottom – Vishnu Right - destroyer
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ4 Shri Ganesh is the son of Shiva and Parvati . He is widely worshipped as Vignesh , the remover of obstacles. Sita – Avatari of Lakshmi, wife of Rama (avatar of Vishnu)
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ5 The least religious of Hindu festivals, Holi marks the first day of spring. The two-day festival starts with huge bonfires and the second day day is marked by people throwing colored powder and water at friends and family.  The significance of throwing colors comes from the traditional idea that colored powders have medicinal qualities. The color was meant to protect from cold etc that comes with the changing of seasons.
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ6 Puja is often completed at home with the family; typically families choose to worship one of many gods and set up a shrine to them; shrines contain pictures, flowers, fruit, incense, other symbols; appeals to all senses in order to completely involve the entire self in prayer Sraddha – ritual in which Hindu males symbolically support their father, grandfather, and great-grandfathers in other worlds by offering water and rice Mandir – “dwelling” public temple usually devoted to just one god; many mandirs contain bathing tank for cleansing,; temple pujas performed at dawn, noon, dusk, and midnight
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ7 Kshatriya -- ksha - th (as in 4th) - ri - ya (a - short vowel) Vaisya -- Why - s - ya (ya' -- 'a' short vowel); Untouchables, now called Harijans, have traditionally occupied the lowest place in the caste system of Hindu India; they were called untouchable because they were considered to be outside the confines of caste. Their impurity derived from their traditional occupations, such as the taking of life and the treatment of bodily effluvia In 1949 the Indian government outlawed the use of the term Untouchables (1950 it was in the constitution). The group has been reclassified as the "Scheduled Castes" and has been granted special educational and political privileges. Today it is illegal to discriminate against a Harijan, yet they remain generally at the bottom of the caste hierarchy, performing the most menial roles demanded by society. They numbered an estimated 65 million in the late 1960s.
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia Ask – what is Dharma, again?
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ8
  • Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia Unit - South Asia UNQ9 A replica of an ancient statue of Gautama Buddha, found from Sarnath , near Varanasi The Khanda , one of the most important symbols of Sikhism
  • Transcript

    • 1. Unit 4: South Asia Unit - South Asia 1. Culture: Hinduism and other religions of South Asia 2. History of the region, and how it shapes India today 3. Current Issues facing countries in South Asia
    • 2. Unit 4, Part 1: Hinduism and Other Religions of South Asia*
    • 3. History of Hinduism*
      • One of world’s oldest - dates back @ 5,000 years – began in Indus River Valley (today, Pakistan)
      • No single founder/prophet
      • 900 million followers worldwide
        • Most in India
      • 3 rd largest religion - 14% of world’s population
      Unit - South Asia
    • 4. Hinduism’s Basic Beliefs*
      • Dharma
      • Duties that each person must complete, based on their status, or caste , in society
      • Karma
      • Belief that a person experiences the effects of his actions
      • All actions have consequences – and are dealt with in future lives
      Unit - South Asia
    • 5. Unit - South Asia What is the meaning behind this mage?
    • 6. Hinduism’s Basic Beliefs*
      • Dharma
      • Duties that each person must complete, based on their status in society
      • Karma
      • Belief that a person experiences the effects of his actions
      • All actions have consequences – and are dealt with in future lives
      • Samsara
      • Belief in the cycle of birth, life, death, and rebirth
      • Moksha
      • Ultimate goal of Hinduism
      • Achieving the release from the cycle of rebirth and suffering (Samsara)
      Unit - South Asia
    • 7. Major Hindu Gods*
      • Hindus acknowledge and worship many gods, but these are all versions of the one supreme "God“ known as Brahman
      • Everything in the universe is part of Brahman
      • Gods take many forms, known as avatar
      Unit - South Asia
    • 8. Unit - South Asia 10 avatar of Lord Vishnu Buddha is an avatar of Lord Vishnu
    • 9. Major Hindu Gods*
      • Hindus acknowledge and worship various gods but these are all versions of the one supreme "God“ known as Brahman
      • Everything in the universe is part of Brahman
      • Gods take many forms, known as avatar
      • The Trimutri : Hinduism’s three most important gods
      • Brahma –creator god; often pictured as having four sides
      • Vishnu –the preserver; balances good and evil
      • Shiva – represents destruction – so that rebirth may take place
      Unit - South Asia
    • 10. Unit - South Asia Which is which?
    • 11. Other Popular Hindu Deities
      • Ganesh –one of the most popular Indian deities; is considered the “remover of obstacles”; patron of science and learning
      • Krishna – one of 10 avatars of Vishnu; represents joy, freedom, and love
      • Sita – represents all that is great in womanhood; symbol of ideal woman, daughter, wife, and mother
      Unit - South Asia
    • 12. Major Holidays and Holy Days*
      • Diwali
      • Festival of Lights, beginning of Hindu New Year – Oct./Nov.
      • Hindus clean homes, wear new clothes, exchange gifts
      • Holi
      • 3 day festival marking the beginning of spring
      • Thousands of others honoring the deities (gods)!
      Unit - South Asia
    • 13. Unit - South Asia Diwali and Holi
    • 14. Important Practices*
      • Puja (daily worship/prayer), at home or at a shrine (one of the 5 “daily practices”)
          • 2. Recite scripture
          • 3. Honor parents and elders
          • 4. Help poor
          • 5. Feed animals
      • Meditation and Yoga –main way of attaining spiritual goals
      • Water – believed to “balance” a person, cleanse away wrongs (sins), and renew
        • Ganges river purest river for Hindus
      • Ahimsa - Belief in non-violence and a respect for all life, human and animal
      • Yatra (Pilgrimage) – not required, but a way to become closer to moksha
      Unit - South Asia
    • 15. Important Practices (continued): Caste System (Varna)*
      • Varna is the cornerstone of Hinduism
      • Four castes exist
      • Brahmins (priests/scholars)
      • Kshatriya (rulers/warriors)
      • Vaisyas (farmers/merchants/business)
      • Sudras (artisans/laborers)
      • The Dalits , also known as untouchables , are outside the system
      • Lowest status
      • Considered most “polluted” –lowest jobs like working with carcasses or removing waste
      • Gandhi worked to eliminate the discrimination faced by this group
      • Term officially forbidden by the Indian constitution (1950)
      Unit - South Asia
    • 16. Unit - South Asia Untouchables disposing of Victims of the 2005 tsunami near Chennai (Madras)
    • 17. Important Practices (continued): Caste System (Varna)*
      • Cornerstone of Hinduism
      • Four castes exist
      • Brahmins (priests and scholars)
      • Kshatriya (rulers and warriors)
      • Vaisyas (farmers and merchants)
      • Sudras (artisans and laborers)
      • The Dalits , also known as untouchables , are outside the system
      • Lowest status in Indian society
      • Considered most “polluted” – work lowest jobs like working with carcasses or removing waste
      • Gandhi worked to eliminate the discrimination faced by this group
      • Officially forbidden by the Indian constitution in 1950
      • Each person is born into a caste and has a certain dharma , that is specific to that caste
      • There are thousands of subcastes, called jatis
      • A Hindu can change caste only in next life
      Unit - South Asia
    • 18. Holy Books*
      • The Vedas (Holy Books)
      • Hindu thought system and the world’s oldest writings
      • Originally written in Sanskrit – holy language
      • The Upanishads
      • Personal instruction in the faith
      Unit - South Asia
    • 19. Other Religions of South Asia*
      • Islam (Pakistan)
      • Buddhism (Nepal, Sri Lanka)
      • Sikhism, Jainism
        • These religions have elements of Hinduism
      Unit - South Asia Jainism Symbol pledging non-violence (Ahisma) Gautama Buddha Statue in Varanasi, India The Khanda, one Of the most important Symbols of Sikhism. Symbolizes knowledge of God.

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