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Lecture

The Indic Worldview


Department
Religion
Course Code
RLG100Y1
Professor
Andre Maintenay

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World Religions
November 22nd, 2011.
The Indic Worldview
Reading: NONE
The south Asian tradition Indic worldview, whole different way of conceiving the
world, understanding how it works, our relationship to world & each other, very different
from Abrahamic traditions.
Note: all points are Sanskrit terms
1st point of Indic Worldview Anadi, meaning without beginning
Refers to understanding of way the universe works
Universe always is, will always will be, and continues to be ongoing but is
constantly changing
Therefore see transformation of various types (dramatic, minimal)
Universe always been here
2nd point – Kala, meaning nature of time
W/ reference to the idea of the movement of time
God created universe and from this moment we started to mark historical time
If universe has always been going then how do we understand/mark time?
Therefore we say South Asian tradition understands movement of time in different
way
Time moves in rhythms, sometimes in evolving or degenerating cycle
(wavelength) for eternity
Jane understanding of time: Positive phases (spiritual) or degenerating phases
(moral, spiritual sense)
Hindu understanding of time:
Time moves in cycles, e.g. have a certain phase at which creation happened,
physically, morally, spiritually evolves in certain pattern and once reaches the top
of the circle (apex), starts to devolve again and eventually gets to point of no
return and self destructs
But before destructs, sheds seed for beginning of another cycle; 4 phases in each
cycle
Phases called Yuga, meaning age
1st phase –when cycle is uncorrupted; we who inhabit world also understood to be
most uncorrupted, because lack of moral pollutants in our minds, our intellect is
sharp to understand clearly
Therefore we live long lives, world is free of war, diseases
However as proceed further into cycle and concurrent with the pollutants that
enter into moral sphere, see development and introduction of disease, famine,
increasingly self serving forms of behaviour, development of conflict, wars, and
our interpersonal relationships tend to conflict more, having impact on
environment, society
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