The time period “Hinduism” contains quite a few traditions, that are intently associated and share widespread themes however don’t represent a unified set of beliefs or practices.
Hinduism is believed to have gotten its title from the Persian phrase hindu, which means “river,” utilized by outsiders to explain the folks of the Indus River Valley. Hindus themselves check with their faith as sanatama dharma, “everlasting faith,” and varnasramadharma, a phrase emphasizing the achievement of duties (dharma) applicable to 1’s class (varna) and stage of life (asrama).
Hinduism has no founder or date of origin. The authors and dates of most Hindu sacred texts are unknown. Students describe fashionable Hinduism because the product of non secular growth in India that spans practically 4 thousand years, making it the oldest surviving world faith. Certainly, as seen above, Hindus regard their faith as everlasting (sanatama).
Hinduism shouldn’t be a homogeneous, organized system. Many Hindus are devoted followers of Shiva or Vishnu, whom they regard as the one true God, whereas others look inward to the divine Self (atman). However most acknowledge the existence of Brahman, the unifying precept and Supreme Actuality behind all that’s.
Most Hindus respect the authority of the Vedas (a set of historical sacred texts) and the Brahmans (the priestly class), however some reject one among each of those authorities. Hindu spiritual life may take the type of devotion to God or gods, the duties of household life, or concentrated meditation. Given all this range, you will need to take care when generalizing about “Hinduism” or “Hindu beliefs.”
The primary sacred writings of Hinduism, which date to about 1200 BC, had been primarily involved with the ritual sacrifices related to quite a few gods who represented forces of nature. A extra philosophical focus started to develop round 700 BC, with the Upanishads and growth of the Vedanta philosophy. Round 500 BC, a number of new perception methods sprouted from Hinduism, most importantly Buddhism and Jainism.
Within the 20th century, Hinduism started to realize reputation within the West. Its totally different worldview and its tolerance for range in perception made it a sexy different to conventional Western faith. Though there are comparatively few western converts to Hinduism, Hindu thought has influenced the West not directly by means of spiritual actions like Hare Krishna and New Age, and much more so by the incorporation of Indian beliefs and practices (such because the chakra system and yoga) in books and seminars on well being and spirituality.