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•not the same as Christian Salvation.
•Hindus ultimate goal/freedom from samsara
•final step: when one renounces all human trappings and discovers the truth within the deepest self. He finds that Atman is Braham. 4 traditional paths



“worn-out garments are shed by the body/warn-out bodies are shed by the dweller.”
A sacred writing: epic poetry, mythology
Most popular of Hindu writing.



Cycle of transmigration (reincarnation)



Ultimate reality, without qualities
Cannot be visualized as he/she it has no qualities.
CS Lewis: Greg tapioca

People worship three manifestations of Brahman:
Brama, Vishnu, shiva


Jana (yoga)

Path to oneness with with god through: knowledge: a transforming intuitive discernment -turning the knower into what he or she knows.
Reflecting on the nature of the Atman- the self wish is eternal and (in advaita) identical with Brahman.
Shifting self-identification to the “abiding part” of her nature.
“I am witness” approach to his own history/life
Brahman is all and the self (Atman) is Brahman


Bhakti (yoga)

The way of devotion
Expressions of faith in and love for a personal deity of choice
Community worship
Personal care for an image of the deity (bathing, dressing,feeding)
What is done is not as important as how it is done; do it with faith and devotion.


Karma (yoga)

The way of action
Most important to the majority of Hindus
Performance of meritorious religious deeds: ritual (daily, rites of passage) and festivals and pilgrimage


Raja (yoga)

Disciplined bodily and mental activity designed to explore the nature of the true self.
Layers of human beings: bodies, minds, subconscious, being self)



True self, soul, essence of human life.
When the body dies, the jiva (individual soul) transmigrates(is reincarnated).
The form of a new body depends on karma (consequences of actions taken in a percipient life)


Vedas (knowledge and wisdom)

Oldest and most sacred scriptures
Four collections including Rig Veda
(Over 1,000 hymns to various gods)



Philosophical extension of vedas


Four human desires (Hinduism)


4 stages: student, householder, forest dweller, renunciation


Geographical origins of Hinduism

Indus Valley
Indian regions



The awakened one


Mahayana: ( the great react/ferry)

Stresses grace.
Made space for lay people (Buddhism for the people)
Because of the. Inner of people their theology could get to nirvana, they were the big raft.
Very popular. Broke into many schools


Hinayana (little raft/ferry)

Hate the name Hinayana and called themselves Theravada Buddhist.
Closer to Buddha’s original message: in it alone
You build your own ferry and cross the river of life yourself.
Stayed one school.


Nirvana (Salvation)

“Blowing out”of desire and attachment.
Escape from simsara (reincarnation)
The eight fold path has a presupposition that as Christians we already know but Buddha thought it so evident that he never explicitly named it as a “fold” of the path and that is “right association”.


Tri-pitaka ( 3 baskets)

First council produced Pali Canon:
Recitations of Buddha’s teaching
Not written down for several centuries


Sutta-pitaka (basket of discourse)

Doctrinal teachings


Vinaya-pitaka (basket of discipline)

Rules and regulations



Supplement containing reflection on teaching


Lotus sutra

Teaching of Mahayana doctrine


Gautama siddhartha

536 by.
Royal Indian family (Shaka tribe) carefully protected by father
“Awakened” around age 30: middle path
Protected from “big” questions
Father rid stress rod anything that would cause him distress



Literal, eternal, uncreated word of god
Precious revelation (Jewish and Christian scriptures) had become corrupted.
Doctrine of abrogation: a newer revelation supersedes an older revelation.
Compiled after Muhammad’s death (646-650 ce) from various collections.
Muhammad believed it to be his only miracle
For insiders it is considered perfect in thought and form
Outsiders have many problems with it including many internal contradictions and with it being “toilsome reading” at best. Find many of the flaws it claims to be free from.
Different from other religious texts. Not historic and doctrinal like the Torah and New Testament nor metaphysical like the upanishads. Most central thing in Muslim life.
Emphasizes deeds over ideas.



Accumulations of traditional teachings by respected elman
Traditions concerning sayings of Muhammad.


Biographical information on Muhammad
“May peach be upon him”

Born in Mecca around 570 ad
Born into one of Mecca’s premier families
Parents die while he is in infancy, he is raised by an affectionate uncle.
Tradition states he was pleasant and kind in temperament
Took issue with the lawlessness of the time
Went into the caravan business at 25
Went into business with a wealthy widow named Khadijah
Would later marry her despite her age.
• First revelation
610 ce during lunar month of Ramadan (night of power)
Ascended into each of the 7 layers of heaven
Conversed with Abraham, Moses, Jesus
Dome of the Rock built in 691 on the site of his ascension (the Temple Mount)
• Hijra (“flight” to Medina)
622 CE
Marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar
Represents the transformation of Islam from merely a religion to a faith-focused political systems
Revelations continue in Medina 622-632 CE
•victory in Mecca
In 630 CE a Muslim force of 10,000 met little resistance
Mecca became religious center of Islam


Islam view of Jesus

Jesus was the son of the Virgin Mary
He was a great prophet (messenger) not the son of God
Jesus was not crucified
He will someday return to reign for 40 years, he will marry, have children, die and be buried in Medina
In the end he will stand for judgement with other men


5 pillars of Islam: merit-based Salvation

I. Confession(shahada)
Public statement meaning “there is no god but Allah and Muhammad was his prophet”
First step in becoming Muslim
Must be recited in Arabic
Repeated multiple times a day, from birth to death

II. Prayer (salat)
Five times per day in direction of Mecca (supposedly through arguing with Moses)
Preceded by ritual washing’s
Recitations of qu’ran in Arabic
Must follow prescribed movements and postures
Most difficult overall concept is that we are derived and mere creatures

III. Fasting (sawm)
Month of Ramadan
Recalls the first revelation of qu’ran
Therefore, focus on reading qu’ran
Abstain from all food, water, sensual pleasure during daylight
Children, pregnant women, travelers, exempted
3 day feast, Eid al fitr ( breaking of the fast) follows

IV. Giving Alms ( zakat)
Purification, giving cleanses a Muslim of greed and selfishness
Annual giving determining 2.5% of a Muslims wealth
Varying rules for calculating and submitting zakat

V. Pilgrimage (haji) to Mecca
At least once in a lifetime
2 million + pilgrims a year
As symbols of purity and equality men bathe and shave their heads and wear simple white linen robes
Seven major components including circling the ka’aba and celebrating Eid al Adha (feast of sacrifice)



5 Books of Moses



Book of prophets