RLG100Y1 Lecture : Lecture Notes on Hinduism-February 14th

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5 Aug 2010
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February 14
Hinduism
- interprets Vedas in a philosophical perspective
Vedas:
- Mantras Æ 1500 BCE?
- Brahmanas Æ 1200 BCE?
- Aranyakas Æ 1000 BCE?
- Upanisads Æ 800 BCE? Last word on the Vedas (last section to the corpus)
- in dialogue with each other (Indic traditions) ± familiar with what other groups
are saying ± whether it be critiquing or agreeing; mostly similar but develop
distinct positions regarding certain subjects (e.g. the idea of karma)
2 major philosophical insights:
1) Atman ± idea that underlying all the various changes that we experience on a day to
day basis, the contention is that there is a real eternal self, one stable self, that persists
from lifetime to lifetime and is not affected by all the changes going around us ± physical
self = ego self
- brings individual peace, greater connectedness with everything else in the world
- WKHUHLVQRYLWDOGLVWDQFHEHWZHHQWKHLQVLGHVRIDQ\YDULHW\RIµEHLQJ¶LQWKHZRUOG
- Upanisads contends that there is one single essence, power, spirit and this essence
is called BRAHMAN (not Brahmins)
Brahman ± ³YLWDOLW\HQHUJ\SRZHUOLIH´± ultimate
- to know my Atman is to know all Atman ± ultimate connectedness ± to know
oneself is to know all else ± share complex interconnectedness
- major Hindu critique of Buddhism and Jainism ± geared their teaching to a certain
tiny subset of people (people who could learn them) ± Jain and Buddhist =
monastic/ascetic
- 2 points/ethics that come out of Sramana practice
1) Ahimsa ± living in non-harm ± is it workable/possible? No.
- Hinduism ± deal with harm/violence and determining what types are acceptable
and what are not, and in what conditions
2) Celibacy ± both Jain and Budd. Were celibate religions
- Hinduism ± celibacy is not practical
2 broad orientations/idenfies 2 types of peoples
- 1) person who is interested in Moksha ± in pursuit of highest goal (NIVRTTI
orientation)
- 2) vast majority of the world ± interested in religious goals but not in the present
lifetime, looking to live their life (PRAVRTTI)
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Document Summary

Brings individual peace, greater connectedness with everything else in the world. Upanisads contends that there is one single essence, power, spirit and this essence is called brahman (not brahmins) Brahman ;9,90307540710 ultimate to know my atman is to know all atman ultimate connectedness to know oneself is to know all else share complex interconnectedness. Major hindu critique of buddhism and jainism geared their teaching to a certain tiny subset of people (people who could learn them) jain and buddhist = monastic/ascetic. Hinduism deal with harm/violence and determining what types are acceptable and what are not, and in what conditions: celibacy both jain and budd. 1) person who is interested in moksha in pursuit of highest goal (nivrtti orientation)

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