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Flashcards in Hinduism Deck (25)
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Hinduism is indigenous to what part(s) of the world?

The Indian Subcontinent


How many Hindus are there in the world today?

Around 1 billion


What are Hinduism's three most important texts?

1. The Vedas
2. The Mahabharata
3. The Ramayana


Is Hinduism polytheistic? Why or why not?


Hinduism may have over 330 million Gods, but Hinduism asserts a single Supreme Being called Brahman, which incorporates the worship of several different gods that represent Brahman's different aspects.


Around when did Hinduism begin to exist?

Its roots stretch back as far as 2000 B.C.E.
- It was codified in the Vedic texts beginning around 1500 B.C.E.
- Hinduism is unique among major world religions in that it has no single founder


What are the Vedas?

The most important Hindu text(s)
- Essentially complete by 1200 B.C.E.
- Four collections of verses: Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yajur Veda, Atharva Veda


According to Hinduism, what are the four purposes or aims in life?

1. Dharma - duty (generally meaning one's vocation)
2. Artha - wealth (the pursuit of worldly success)
3. Kama - physical pleasure
4. Moksha - the most important: enlightenment, liberation, union with God (Brahman)


What is yoga?

Union of the self with the Hindu Supreme Being
- Generally, refers to one of the many paths toward enlightenment.


What three aspects of the Supreme Being make up the Trimurti, the central trinity of Hinduism?

1. Brahma (the Creator)
2. Vishnu (the Preserver)
3. Shiva (the Destroyer or Transformer)


What are some important attributes of the Hindu god Brahma

The Creator
- Has never been worshipped extensively, despite being one of the three main gods of Hinduism
- In depictions, wears red clothes and does not carry weapons


What are some important attributes of the Hindu god Vishnu?

Protector and preserver of creation
- Embodiment of mercy, kindness, and peace
- Almost always has four arms and is often depicted lying on a serpent
- Consort is Lakshmi


What are some important attributes of the Hindu god Shiva?

Transformer and destroyer
- Destroys the world at the end of each cycle (before Brahma creates it again)
- Associate with dance and meditation
- Consort is Parvati


In Hinduism, what is Devi or Shakti?

The mother Goddess or female aspect of the divine
- Her many forms include Lakshmi, Kali, Parvati, and Durga


What are the five main levels of the Hindu caste system?

1. Brahmins
2. Kshatriyas
3. Vaishyas
4. Shudras
5. Pariah (or Harijans)

Note: There are many of subcastes


What is the Ramayana?

An epic Hindu poem written around the 2nd century B.C.E.
- Tells the story of Rama, the 7th incarnation of Vishnu


What is the Bhagavad Gita?

The single most popular Hindu text
- A section from the Mahabharata
- A "manual for mankind," outlining major philosophical concepts of Hinduism, as well as several types of yoga
- Central figure and teacher of the Bhagavad Gita is Krishna


What is atman?

The "true self" within each person, which is identical to the Hindu Supreme Being Brahman
- The equivalent to the "Human Soul"


What is mudra(s)?

A non-verbal method of communication, using repetitive gestures and finger positions, which is used to provoke a response in the mind of the observer


In Hinduism, what are the four paths to salvation?

1. Bhakti (devotion)
2. Karma (action)
3. Jnana (wisdom/knowledge)
4. Raja (meditation)


What are most Hindu's called when it comes to the consumption of food?

- only animal food they eat are dairy foods
- all life is sacred so meat is forbidden


What are the three types of food consumed by Hindu's?

1. Sattvic Foods
2. Rajasic Foods
3. Tamasic Foods


What is Diwali?

The Hindu "festival of lights," a five-day festival celebrated between mid-October and mid-November.


What is Holi?

A Hindu holiday celebrating the arrival of spring in early to mid-March
- Involves general merrymaking, most famously spraying people with multicoloured paints


What are the four stages of life according to Hindu Society?

1. Student ( 7 to 20)
2. Householder (20 - 50)
3. Semi-retired (when family is self-supporting)
4. Wandering Ascetic (Sanyasin) (when ready)


What is Henna

Painting designs on hands and feet usually done on a bride before the wedding ceremony.