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All Final Exam Keyterms Defined (What you need to know)

Course Code
Henry Shiu
Study Guide

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Key Terms for the Lecture on Hinduism:
sanatana dharmaEternal religion/Eternal truth, to practice Hinduism means to
practice duty, they are devoted to Gods such as Siva or Visnu.
Horizontal Tilak Siva Devotee
Vertical Tilak Visnu Devotee
tilak (or tilaka) – Forehead marking indicating devotion to God
BharataIndigenous term for India
Samsara – cycle of life and death
Indus Valley Civilization – Peaceful civilization found by archaeologists in
1850s, which many Hindus did not consider it as part of Hinduism. They used a
language called cryptic. They had a different belief for clean/dirty in different
contexts. Hindu temple nowadays are equipped with taps/baths in order to follow
their rituals. They were concerned with procreation and was very organized as a
city. They ended when Aryans came in.
Aryans – They were not as organized as the Indus Valley Civilization, however
they brought in Gods, traditions, languages and rituals. The Aryan language
eventually developed into Sanskrit.
Sanskrit - Official language of Hindu religion, believed to be origin of languages,
believed through syntax, one can get into nature. Everything we know about them
came from collections of writing called Veda.
Vedas – A sacred collection of writings that are not stories but literary manual
only disclosed to priests: a book of prayers, hymns, myths, spells, and
philosophical ideas. Veda means “wisdom”, Vid means “to see” in Sanskrit
whereas in English, “Video” is to see.
Rig-Veda Oldest, ~30,000 years old, containing over 1000 hymns (Rig = Praise)
Yajur-Veda – Instructions of sacrifices
Sama-Veda – Consisted of Melodies: to be sung at right pitch to be effective
Atharva-Veda – Healing Rituals
Samhitas - Hymns
Brahmanas – Instruction on the performance for Rituals
Aranyakas – Composition of forest

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Upanishads – Latest, philosophical discussion about nature of universe, whether
life is eternal, karma, reincarnation, etc.
Puranas – Old tales about deities
Prana – Internal air-current of the body basic animating principle.
Atman – Soul, self-existing to human body, inseparable from body
Brahman – Means single source of it all, also explains how sacrifices worked.
Rita – Means harmony and order
Purusha (or Purusa) – Primeval giant sacrificed by the gods to create the world.
Deva – God (e.g. Indra, ¼ of over 1000 Hymns dedicated to him, God of War).
The Laws of Manu – Attributed to Sage Manu who laid down rules, also given
class (Varna) their duties.
Karma – Actions every action has its circumstances…Good action good
reward. (Good karma means performing rituals and fulfilling duties).
Varna – Class
Jatis – Hereditary occupational groups 1. Priests (brahmans) 2. Rulers/warrior
(kstriyas) 3. Commoners (vaisyas)
Sudra – Hunters, fishermans, whoever dealt with dead bodies
Dharmasastra – Assume one’s birth location indicates their karma
Asramas – 4 stages of life to increase dignity
artha – “worldly success” – achieving success in society
kama – “sensory pleasure” – acceptable goal for men
dharma - “Duty” – prescribed by one’s caste
moksa – “Liberation” – To attain this one must practice yoga
yoga – “to join, liberate, to unite”, 8 stages of meditational principles
samskaras – Life cycle rites

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puja – Worship, daily practice must be done at home, pleased the 5 sense with 5
different offerings incense, flower, fruit, music, and cloth.
Namaskara (or Namaste) – Gestures of respects, right hand is pure and left hand
is impure
Prasad – Gift from deity, usually food.
Bhakti – Devotional faith
Kali Yuga – Period of degeneration
Saiva – tradition whose worship is focused on Siva
Vaisnava – tradition whose worship is focused on Visnu
Ganesa – Elephant headed son of Siva, most popular.
Siva – Essence found in all creative energies, punished humans, served the world
repeatedly, linked to creation and destruction.
Visnu – Believed to be the one who truly underlines all reality, theme of
incarnation. Saved the world through many reincarnations as animals/human
Rama – Hero of Ramayana
Krisna – Visnu reincarnation, taken in many forms. Seen as reality from which
all god originates.
Devis – Goddesses of nature, earth, all rivers are goddesses.
Pativrata – All laws of Manu reflect the emphasis of the dharma of women as a
faithful wife
Key Terms for the Lecture on Sikhism:
Sufism – A Islamic mystical tradition, some believed to have derived from
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