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Am I Hindu ? Paperback – 1 January 1993
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From the Publisher
In Conversation with Ed Viswanathan
Introduction to Hinduism DADDY, MAY I TALK TO YOU?
Of course you may. I WANT TO ASK YOU A LOT OF QUESTIONS REGARDING OUR RELIGION. Please go ahead and ask me any question you want. WHERE DO I START? Start with the first question that comes to your mind. OK. WHAT AM I, A HINDU? Of course you are. We follow Hinduism, so we are called Hindus, just like the people who follow Christianity are called Christians.
Looking at it in one way, Hinduism is the relentless pursuit after truth. As such, it is the religion forever. There is only one God and one truth. The Hindu Vedas proclaim, "Ekam Sat, Viprah Bahudha Vadanti" (There is one truth, only men describe It in different ways). So a Christian, a Hindu, a Muslim and a Jew are all one and the same. Looking at it in another way, Hinduism is not a religion but a way of life. For argument’s sake, one can state that if all Hindu scriptures are destroyed one day,
this age-old religion will still come back to life again within a few years, since it pursues only absolute truth. Right now, Hinduism is more a culture than a religion.
DADDY, BEFORE I PROCEED FURTHER, I WANT TO WARN YOU THAT I AM A TEENAGER BORN IN THE U.S.A., SO SOME OF MY QUESTIONS MAY SOUND AGGRESSIVE. I HOPE YOU WON’T BE OFFENDED. Son, you can ask me any question you want. Just think of yourself as a district attorney, interrogating me on the witness stand. Trust me, none of your questions will offend me. I will answer all your questions as directly as possible. I will also never give you any retaliatory answers. Furthermore, I shall bring other religious ideas and science into my answers. I hope you will be satisfied. HONESTLY, CAN HINDUISM STAND GRILLING QUESTIONS? Hinduism has no problem facing any type of question. It does not have to hide behind unpronounceable Sanskrit words or spiritual dogma. Instead, it absorbs new ideas like a sponge.
Believe it or not, Hinduism recharges itself with modern thoughts. Technology, psychology, parapsychology, modern astronomy, the new physics and genetics all enrich Hinduism. Within Hinduism, you can think and argue on any subject. You can even make statements like "There is no Krishna or Rama" and still be a Hindu. It has no hierarchy, it has no establishment and it has no governing body. In Hinduism, one will seldom come across a statement starting with "Thou shalt not." As you study Hinduism, from one end to the other you will find it to be filled with all kind of ideas. It has highly spiritualistic Advaita and Raja Yoga on one side and highly materialistic, atheistic, hedonistic Charvaka philosophy, which does not believe in God or the Vedas, on the other side. On one side, idolatry is a part of Hinduism, and on the other, as expressed by the German philosopher Max Muller,
The religion of the Vedas knows no idols." The Jahala Upanishad says, "Images are meant only as aids to meditation for the ignorant."
The ancient Hindu mythology is filled with all kind of stories. On one side, Advaita talks about Brahman (the Infinite) alone, and again on the other side, mythology talks about thousands of gods. It is indeed a religion with unity in diversity. Picking up subjects randomly from Hindu scriptures could confuse you. But if you sit down and study them all, you will be able to understand the actual truth behind all Hindu scriptures. Today, there are quite a large number of books on Hinduism available in English and in so many other languages that even the knowledge of Sanskrit is not a must to understand Hindu scriptures.
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- Publisher : Rupa Publishing; 2012th edition (1 January 1993)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 321 pages
- ISBN-10 : 8129119390
- ISBN-13 : 978-8129119391
- Item Weight : 620 g
- Dimensions : 13.97 x 1.93 x 21.59 cm
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In summary, I would say this book is for cultural Hindus who want an easy to read in an 'other than religious format' to get insight into who they are. It is also a good read for people like me who want to read about Hinduism in a bottom line yet insightful fashion. Well written.
Though if you r a new bee to hinduism and want to know the facts of the religion..this is the book for u....