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Final

Answers to the final exam practice problems

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Department
Religion
Course
RLG205H5
Professor
Ajay Rao
Semester
Fall

Description
RLG205 INTRODUCTION TO SOUTH ASIAN RELIGIONS FINAL EXAM STUDY QUESTIONS 1. What are the problems associated with defining Hinduism? No founder, no one set of doctrines, diverse ideaspractices, believe in many different things, historically not understand the word Hindu, religion comes from many different sources (Vedic Aryans, Indus Valley Civilization, different poets, etc). 2. What role did colonialism and Orientalist scholarship play in shaping the modern understanding of Hinduism as a unified religion? They put laws which forced people to choose if they are Hindu or not. Forced Hinduism to define itself. It stopped the tradition of widows throwing themselves into fire after there husbands died. It weakened the caste system to some degree Translated Hindu texts that were only in Sanskrit, into local languages giving access to Hindus who didnt know Sanskrit. 3. What is the relationship between ritual and the philosophical ideas expressed in the Upanisads? Focused on ritual + asceticism (philosophy). Focus on ritual becomes abstract. Talk about Brahmin + atman (philosophy). Do good action to get good karma to get a better reincarnation. Lack of ritual (renunciation) is better! Karma focuses on the relationship between action and results. The Veda is all about sacrifice, how to perform it, why to perform it, what to say, and so on. The structure of the Veda (4 books total; with 4 parts each): - Rig Veda all hymns (hotru) completed by around 1100 BC www.notesolution.com- Yajur Veda instructions (vdgatru) - Sama Veda music (Brahmin) - Athwiata Veda mixed, has magical spells (adhvaryu) each of the 4 parts is divided into four parts Samhita actual mantra Brahmana stories, reflections Aranyaka reflections, philosophical meaning Upanisad most influential, philosophical interpretations - The upanisads was the spiritual knowledge that was interpreted from the rituals. - The Upanisads continued to be composed throughout the middle ages into the modern period - not everyone gets to read the Upanisads - the Upanisads explain the symbolic significance of the ritual - SHURTI - revealed knowledge is the focus of the Upanishad - The Upanisaids completely re-evaluated the nature of ritual, seeing its internalization in the individual as its hightest meaning, and subordinating ritual action to knowledge. This spiritual knowledge could be attained by ascetisism or world-renounciation and disciplines which came to be known as yoga. The Upanisaids attest to the existence of ascetic traditions and, by the 6th or 5th century BCE, traditions of asceticism and world-renounciation for the purpose of spiritual knowledge and liberation had developed both within the bounds of vedic tradition and outside these boundaries, most notable in the Jain and Buddhist traditions. - The development of renounciation in the Upanisads is intimately connected to the vedic ritual tradition, yet one must also recognize the force of the argument that the Upanisads contain a discontinuity of ideas with the vedic ritual tradition; a discontinuity which indicates non-vedic influences.. -this may have to do with the fact that the Upanisads were changed and written up as time went on, while the Veda was there before. 4. What are the two theories of karma and how are they related? www.notesolution.com
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