RLGA01H3 Study Guide - Final Guide: Yuga, Upaya, Asanga

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18 Dec 2012

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Religion Exam Key Terms
Hinduism Key Terms
- Eternal duty, religious and social obligations
- New texts refer to it as dharma
- Sanskrit word from Aryan origin; righteous and faith
- Coloured dot on forehead, for married women and ritual conducting men
- Signified battle between Saiva vs. Vaisna devotees; Tilaks differentiated between the two
- Markings for birthplace, marital status, caste, occasion, and gender; represents role in society
- Indigenous term for India
- Originates from King Bharata (from Mahabharata)
- Identified India before the British Rule; India came from British
- Means action, system of cause/effect spanning over lifetimes; punish/reward system of actions
- Significant: implies continuing rebirths (SAMSARA); becomes idea of life adopted by non Hindus too
- Good/bad actions that decide quality of life in rebirth; significant principle in Hindu religion
- Endless cycle of suffering caused by birth/death/rebirth
- Goes hand in hand with Karma; At time of death, karmic balance inherit by their next life
- Motivates Hindus to obtain supreme wisdom to be liberated from the cycle
Indus Valley
- Discovered through 1926 excavation; existed between 300 and 1500 BCE
- Harappa is the capital and Mohenjo Daro is a city there
- Very complex and advanced civilization; own plumbing systems for each house
- Home to a great bath; signifies that holy baths were given to gods/deities
- One of two towns near banks of Indus River; means mound of dead
- Culture falls under Harappa civilization; more narrow of IV Civilization; uniformity in culture
- Shows excellent architecture of Harrapa civilization/religious beliefs with procreation
- Found in 1926 excavation; floods destroyed the cities
- Culture similar in regards to architecture and beliefs in procreation/purity
- Clues found signify that Hindu practices were displayed
- Had beliefs of trilokam (three different realms, heaven, hell, earth)
- Refers to Indo-European people who migrated to subcontinent
- Language evolved into Sanskrit which significantly then became official Hinduism language
- Derived from the Aryan language
- Plays a significant role as the OFFICIAL language of Hinduism
- Pre classical Sanskrit = vedic transcript; used as ceremonial language, and for rich poetry/literature
- Stories of deities (old and ancient tales)
- Proposed 5th Veda
- Overshadowed by M/R
- Extract from Mahabarata (holiest book in Hinduism); well known
- Krishna advises Arjuna on nature of human Soul/God and teaching liberation
- It was Dharma to fight the enemies; mythical story
- Collection of hymns/mantras (1500-600 BCE); Laws/teachings or duties enclosed in these writings
- Significant because Hinduism referred to as Vedic Dharma: Religions of the Veda
- Constitute oldest, most highly respected Hindu sacred literature
- Divided into 4 sections: Samhitas (hymns), Brahmanas (ritual directions), Aranyakas (Forest Dweller
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Stage) , Upanishads (philosophical text)
- Philosophical texts; Reported conversations on theory of Vedic ritual and nature of knowledge
- Emphasis on placating Gods through ritual success
- Questioning and rejecting authoritarian structures; don’t reject early hymns, rethink and reformulate
Rig Veda
- Collection of hymns; earliest section has 1028 hymns
- Hymns of other Vedas borrow from Rig Veda
- One of the four Vedas, and among world’s oldest texts
Yajur Veda
- Manual on how to conduct rituals
- Hymns are borrowed from Rig Vedas; shows how the Vedas are intertwined
Sama Veda
- Relationship between guru and student showcased here
- Must be sung in a specific manner; from Rig Veda hymns
- Incarnations to ward away evilness/illness ( remedies)
- Chants in book used for medical/healing purposes
- Non Aryan
- Internal air current of the body; basic animating principle; sign of life (like Chi)
- Central concept of Yoga; believed to flow through five networks: Nadis
- Hindus believed Prana would leave you after death
- The human soul that is reborn to a new mother after death
- Carries onto the next birth (affected by Karmic matter)
- Indestructible part of a being, believed by Hindus
- Spiritual universe essence; all deities come from him
- Single source of all that is; pervades thoughts of human and universe itself
- To achieve higher wisdom/liberation from samara, must known relation between Atman & Brahman
- Refers to running with the harmonious flow
- Ever changing abstract principle
- Hindu’s believe this idea governs the world
- The primeval man was dismembered to create the world as a cosmic sacrifice
- Entitled the Hymn of the Supreme Person
- Used as hymns in domestic and temple rituals
Laws of
- Sage Manu who articulates etiquette/duties of each class and age group in Brahmin ruling society
- Played a significant role in Hinduism, as the new basis of laws after the Vedas
- Written regarding righteousness, moral duty, and gave women less of a status
- Means class
- Every class has own etiquette and duties outlined by Laws of Manu
- Birth groups, translated as caste
- Each caste has different practices (if violated you are exiled)
- Hereditary/occupational groups that lead to quite a bit of unfair discrimination
Types of Jatis
- Brahmin: priests/pundits only they can TEACH religion, can study too
- Ksatriya: warriors/rulers (their dharma is to protect country), can study religion
- Vaisya: common people/merchants (wealth/economy), can study religion
- Sudra: slaves/servants serving others
- Commentary on notion of dharma’ speaks of righteousness, moral values, laws
- Served as the foundation of later Hindu laws
- Says that one’s birth place is an indication of the type of karma they attained
- Four stages of life
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- Student: young boy spends time with Guru learning Vedas
- Householder: man repays debts to society and forefathers, and gets married
- Forest Dweller: goes to forest in search of liberation by leaving behind society
- Sanyasi: the man now has children but leaves family behind and searches for enlightenment
- Asramas are only for the upper 3 classes of castes; display of discrimination
4 Aims in Life
- Artha: wealth, power in all forms (one of 3 Classical aims)
- Kama: sensuous pleasure
- Dharma: eternal duty, religious/social obligations, righteousness, faith, justice
- Moksha: liberation from cycle of Samsara
- Meditation; physical posture exercise and practice; 8 Steps: Hathyoga
- Conscious union of one’s soul with the universal soul; provides an inspiration for devotees to do
- Ultimate goal is to reach awareness that’s perfectly at one with and centered at the atman
- Rituals of life cycle/rites
- Over 40 rituals from birth to student hood to marriage)
- Prayers/ritual household worship and homeage
- Prayers/oil lamps/food/musical instruments/ clothes offered to deities
- Built on assumption that humanity and divine must maintain an intimate connection
- Gestures of respect/salutation symbolic to Hindu religion
- At Atman and great at other’s center
- Sanskrit word Namas: to bow
- Gift from the deity as remains from a puja
- Literally means divine flavour
- Priest as councellors:present food/gifts to god and then bless devotees
- In practice it signifies active involvement by devotee in divine worship
- Deities give grace to humanity in return for unselfish devotion
- Became predominant ascetic practice of yoga for Hinduism until today
Kali Yuga
- Post Vedic era in 3102 BCE (lasts 432 000 years)
- It is a period of degeneration
- 10th avatar of Vishnu (Kalki) will emerge; good must be sacrificed to kill all evil
- Followers of lord Siva
- Chosen god who’s essence found in all creative energies
- Linking creation/fertility/destruction together
- Tradition whose focus is on Vishnu
- Significant because the rivalry between Saivas and Vaishnavas raged on for long while
Ishta Devata
- Private Pujas by a bhakta to chosen deity
- Those in Saiva/Vaishna traditions practice this
- Performed for their personal favourite god; shows Hinduism’s polytheistic approach
- A chosen deity, son of Siva and has an elephant head
- Saves world repeatedly
- Returns earth to resting stage
- Essence in all creative energies; punishes humans too
- Theme of reincarnation: avatars
- Multifaceted increases complexity of the many avatars
- Underlies true reality
- 3 morals: obedience to parents, loyalty to brothers, kingship of Hinduism example
- He is the hero of Ramayana
- Offers counsel to save the world
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