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Quiz 1 study notes.docx

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David Perley

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RLG Quiz – Hinduism Key Themes “Hinduism”: What‟s in a Name? Ancient Vedic Traditions: the role of scripture and ritual Upanishadic Traditions: from Samsara to Moksha Classical Hinduism: Accessibility, dharma, and the role and place of „persons‟ Key Terms Artha – wealth and power one of the classical aims in life, neither good nor bad in itself, however, person can become immortal if pursued with wrongly Avatara – a „decent‟ or incarnation of a deity in earthly form, example: Vishnu and Rama or Krishna Bhakti – loving devotion to a deity seen as a gracious being who enters the world for the benefit of humans, one way to liberation through bhakti yoga (way of devotion, bhakti traditions differ in North and South India Brahmin – a member of the priestly class, a type of social class, considered itself highest social class in Hindu society, only group in Hindu society authorized to teach the Vedas Dharma – a goal/aim in life, to follow religious and social duty, including both righteousness and faith, does not cover all that is sacred for the Hindu Guru – a spiritual teacher, not necessarily connected to any particular tradition, emphasize universal and humanist messages, stressing the divinity in all human beings, encourage to transcend caste and community distinctions Kama – one of the three classical aims in life, sensual (not just sexual) pleasure, and appreciation of beauty Kshatriya – one of the four principle classes, included rulers and warriors in ancient Hindu society, permitted to study the Vedas but not teach them, protect the people and the country Moksha – liberation from the cycle of birth and death (samsara), one of the three classical aims in life, liberation requires a transforming experiential wisdom Prasada - literal mean clarity, but meaning divine favour, a gift from the deity, especially food that has been presented to the god‟s temple image, blessed, and returned to the devotee, RLG Quiz – Hinduism Puja – ritual household worship of the deity commonly involving oil lamps, incense, prayers and food offerings (Prasada), way in which Hindu devotees express their devotion to a deity or a spiritual teacher Puranas – old tales, stories about deities that become important after the Vedic period, honor the Goddess as an ultimate power, the creator of the universe, and the redeemer of human beings (Goddess sometimes class Devi) (manifestations – Parvati, Sarasvati) Rishi – a seer, the composers of the ancient Vedic hymns, rishis saw the mantras and transmitted them to their disciples, starting a continual oral tradition Sadhu – a holy man, a type of religious leader, commanded anything from obedience to veneration Samnyasin – one who has reached the fourth stage of the classical stages of life for Hindu males after student, householder, and forest dweller, would renounce the material world altogether and take up the ascetic life Shruti – “what is heard” the sacred literature of the Vedic and Upanishadic periods, recited orally by the Brahmin priests for many centuries before being written down Smrti – “what is remembered”, a body of ancient Hindu literature, including the epics, Puranas and law codes, formed after the shruti and passed down in written tradition Upanayana – can mean either “acquiring the extra eye of knowledge” or “coming close to a teacher” to get knowledge, includes the brahma upadesha - the initiation of a young Brahmin boy into ritual responsibility, in which he is given a cord to wear over his left shoulder and a mantra to recite and is sent to beg for food for the day Upanishad - Philosophical texts in the form of reported conversations on the theory of Vedic ritual and the nature of knowledge, composed around the sex century BCE, most take form of conversation - Karma : action, good and bad, as it is believed to determine the quality of rebirth in future lives - Samsara : the continuing cycle of rebirths - Atman : the individual self, human soul, thought to be identical with Brahmin - Brahman : the world soul, sometime understood in impersonal terms - Moksha : liberation from the cycle of birth and death; one of the three classical aims in life Vedas – The earliest scriptures in the Hindu tradition are oral compositions called shruti („that which was heard‟), The people who transmitted the sacred words were called rishis („seers‟), The dual emphasis on hearing an
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