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Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - HareKrishna - 02-25-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-Bodhi+Feb 25 2009, 10:06 PM-->QUOTE(Bodhi @ Feb 25 2009, 10:06 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin--><!--QuoteBegin-HareKrishna+Feb 25 2009, 01:57 AM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(HareKrishna @ Feb 25 2009, 01:57 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Some find iskon a little alien.For exemple i talk whit an indian student here and ask him if there are doctrinal diferences betwin iskon krishnaism and his indian krishnaism.

Far from it, if one looks closely at the ancient gauDIya-vaiShNava tradition, it becomes clear that iskcon is simply a modern version of the same, and rather quite faithful to that root both in doctrine and in practice. If some Hindus find iskcon 'alien', they should also find that old school equally 'alien' too, if they examine it closely.
.He said that there are no doctrinal diferences ,what he find diferent is that iskonites make big fuss of public shows while his indian krishnaism is more a "family buisiness".

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Shambhu - 03-07-2009

<b>Hinduism – Religion or Dharma?</b>
01/03/2009 11:06:04


Sunil Tuppale

Growing up in Bharat, I have heard people proclaiming out time and again that “All Religions are the same and they teach the same thing”. Elders, teachers, great men of Bharat, leaders and intellectuals, all of them have been drumming the same tone. Naturally I believed in it till I could think for myself. I have seen that it is only in Bharat one hears the above expression. I have lived in the West for quite some time and I must say I haven’t seen any staunch Christian say the same. I have seen that practicing Christians believe that they alone are right in their beliefs and everyone else who is not a Christian have no chance of being saved. The same goes for Muslims. I have some Muslim friends who are pious and committed to Islam. But they are sincere in their belief that they alone are the chosen people and that they have the last word on Religion, Truth, God and that all non-Muslims are doomed.

It made me wonder why are Hindus so keen on speaking for the other religions? I have heard Hindus eagerly quote the mantra from the Rig Veda “Ekam sad vipra bahudha vadanti” to mean that truth is one and that truth is called as Allah or Jesus by different religions. They don’t quote the entire mantra. They quote only a fourth of the mantra.

The entire mantra is

Indram mitram varunam agnim ahuhu

atho divya sa suparno garutman

ekam sad vipra bahudha vadanti

agnim yamam matarisvanam ahuhu

(Rigveda 1.164.46)

‘They hail him as Indra, Mitra, Varuna, Agni or the Divine Garuda.

Truth is one and the Wise ones refer to the truth by different names as Agni, Yama, and Matarisvan.’

To use this verse to say that all religions are the same is a blatant misuse of the profound verse. To say all religions are the same, one must have studied deeply all the different religions. I have seen that people who claim that all religions are the same have rarely studied other religions. They are just parroting that statement they heard from someone and it is not a conclusion that they arrived at by their own study, understanding and conviction. Also I wish to raise a fundamental question. Is Hinduism also a religion like Christianity and Islam? Why should we consider religions on par with Hinduism?

Before I begin, I want to decipher the word religion. A word means one thing in one part of the world whereas in another part of the world, the same word means something totally different. Take the instance of the word secularism. In the West it means the separation of the Church and the State. Where as in Bharat, the definition of secularism is "Sarva Dharma Sama Bhava" which means all religions will be considered equal and given equal preference. Thus the meaning of secularism is totally distorted in Bharat. And particularly secularism in the current context implies animosity towards anything Hindu.

What does the word religion connote in the Western world? It connotes that a religion should be monotheistic. In other words they should believe in One God. It should have a Prophet and that Prophet is reckoned to have been the person who started the religion at a particular point in history. So the three main religions we have are Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Of course there are other religions like Zoroastrianism, Shintoism, Bahai and so on. But for the purpose of this discussion let us consider the Monotheistic religions, particularly Christianity and Islam because they are the only two religions aggressively competing for converts among the entire humanity. The rest of the religions are non converting and therefore non aggressive and non invasive. Judaism is a non converting religion. In other words, you can’t convert to become a Jew. Either you are born a Jew or you are not a Jew. But Christianity and Islam thrive on conversion. In fact they feel that if they don’t convert, their statuses are in peril. So they have perfected the art of conversion. Another feature of the monotheistic religions is that they all believe that this One God, who they claim created the world, is located up in Heaven. And all the monotheistic religions have a ‘Day of Judgment’. In case of Christianity and Islam in particular, the theology is imposed so strongly that people are told that if one doesn’t accept their doctrines, one would have to be punished with eternal damnation or hell fire and all believers of the respective doctrines would go to Heaven and stay with God forever. That is what is meant by the word Salvation. They all believe in one birth and you have to proclaim your faith and adherence to the particular doctrines of your faith in this birth or you will burn in the eternal pit fire of hell. And there is no chance of


In the East, the word religion has a different sense all together. We call it Dharma.

There is no English equivalent for the word Dharma. It is loosely translated as religion. But it is definitely not religion in the Western sense. Hinduism is Sanatana Dharma. Sanatana means timeless. Meaning there was never a time when it was not. Dharma is a profound word. It is also called Vaidika Dharma because it is based on the Vedas. The Vyakhya(elaboration) of Dharma is “Dharyate iti Dharma”. That which upholds everything is Dharma. There is a Cosmic order in the Universe. That order is manifest as everything in this Universe. That which holds this vast and wonderful universe with all its millions of stars, galaxies, planets with all the things and beings in harmony is this Rita, the Cosmic order. The Cosmic order includes the Physical, Physiological, Psychological and Spiritual order. All these are the manifestations of Bhagavan. For Hindus, Bhagavan (The Lord) is present in the form of the Cosmic order. In fact Bhagavan is never separate from this Universe. The Shastras (scriptures) say that all that is here is Bhagavan.“Isavasyam idam sarvam” meaning Bhagavan pervades everything likeAkasha (space). Nothing is separate from Akasha. The Creator and the created are non separate like the spider and the web, like the dreamer and the dream. That which holds this Rita, this cosmic order is Dharma. So to me, Dharma is a Way of Life, Values of Life and Expression of Life that is in keeping with the Vision and understanding of Isavasyam idam sarvam. Being committed to Dharma means having this grand vision of life that all that is there IS Bhagavan and expressing that vision and understanding through our thoughts, words and deeds. That in essence constitutes a Dharmic life. A Dharmic person never goes against the Natural Cosmic Order. Why? Because if I rub against the order, I will get rubbed in the process. If I hurt somebody, I may get away from man made laws because my brother in law is in the Police Department, but I will not be able to escape from the Cosmic law. It is this sense of Dharma that should be the basis of all our endeavors. I should not hurt anybody or anything because I don’t want to be hurt and also by hurting anything or anybody I am hurting something of which I am a part. I should not steal because I don’t want anybody to steal from me. The Mahabharatha speaks of a time when Dharma ruled the world when it says

Na Rajyam Naiva Rajasit Na Dando na ca Dandikaha

Dharmenaiva Praja Sarvaha Rakshantisma Parasparam

The verse above means that there was a time long ago where there was no Kingdom nor a King and no punishments nor a person who would administer punishments. Everybody protected each other with a sense of Dharma. In other words, Dharma was the protector of the people. Everybody acted according to Dharma. So that is our notion of Dharma.

Secondly, our Dharma was not founded by an individual Prophet like the Monotheistic religions. Bhagavan Krishna or Bhagavan Rama

did not start our Dharma. They were born into our Dharma. They were born as Vaidikas. I have had a few people in the West ask me when our ‘religion’ started. I would respond to them saying that the question is like asking “When did Physics start?” Did the laws of Physics start on a particular day? Isn’t it that the laws of Physics have always been there as long as this creation has been?

Similarly, our Dharma has always been throughout the myriad cycles of manifestation (Shristi) and dissolution (Pralaya). So it is not that our Dharma originated at some particular point in History. Hence it is called Sanatana. It has always been there. It was manifested by Bhagavan at the time of Shristi and it becomes unmanifest at Pralaya.

Thirdly, our concept of Heaven is not where you go and stay permanently. Our Shastras tell us that heaven is a temporary place one goes to enjoy the fruits of one’s good Karmas (Punyas). It is said “Kshine Punye Martya Lokam Vishanti”. After ones Punyas are exhausted, one will have to go back to Martya loka or the earth where one gets another chance to work for Moksha (liberation from cycle of births and deaths) which is not salvation. Salvation means you are condemned and then you need to be salvaged. Our scriptures do not consider us as condemned. It refers to us as “Amritasya Putraha” meaning immortal children. Moksha is the outcome of Self Knowledge.

Dharma doesn’t divide humanity into believers and infidels as religions do. We also

have amongst us those who are Nastikas. Nastikas are those who don’t accept the Vedas as a valid means of knowledge. The Nastikas include the Baudhas (Buddhists), Jainas (Jains) and Charvaks (materialists).

Vaidika Dharma recognizes that all forms of worship of the Lord to be true as elucidated in the Rig Vedik Mantra above. Since the Lord is not separate from this Universe, we can invoke the lord in any form. Pushpadantacharya’s Shiva Mahimna Stotram says

Ruchinam Vaichitryat Ruju Kutila Nana Patha Jusha

Nrinam Eko Gamya Tvam Asi Paya Samarnavaiva

According to ones disposition, one takes to a form of worship or a path of Sadhana (Spiritual Practice) which may be direct or meandering and all those paths are valid as long as they are ultimately the worship of Bhagavan which in turn leads us to Atma Gyan or Self Knowledge.

Bhagavan also says in the Bhagavad Gita

“Ye Yatha Mam Prapadyante, TansThataiva Bhajamyaham” (Ch 4 Verse 11)

which means

“In whatever form people worship me, in that form I respond to the devotees and bless them”.

That is why we have so many forms. We can invoke and worship the lord in whatever form we wish to, according to our taste and disposition. And we are not idol worshippers as the others like to accuse us. We are Bhagavan worshippers. We worship Bhagavan in the idol. So we have all the different panthas (paths) each specializing in the worship of Bhagavan in one form or the other. Thus we have the six main recognized forms of worship according to Bhagavan Bashyakara Acharya Shankara which includes Shaiva (worshippers of Bhagavan Shiva), Shakta(worshippers of Bhagavathi or Goddess), Vaishnava (worshippers of Bhagavan Vishnu), Ganapathya(worshippers of Bhagavan Ganapathy), Kaumarya(worshippers of BhagavanKarthikeya) and Saurya(worshippers of BhagavanSurya). Many forms of worship are of recent origin and we accept them also as long as they lead us to the Knowledge of the Atma (Self).

Above all, Dharma cannot be imposed. It can be revealed or taught, but never imposed by force. Again, to quote from the Mahabharatha ‘Dharmasya Tattvam Nihitam Guhayam’ which means the expression of Dharma comes from within a person. It can never be imposed. Religions are almost always imposed on people either by lure or by force.

So when you consider these, it is not difficult to recognize the profound differences between religions and Dharma. How can we consider Hindu Dharma as a religion? How can we accept that Dharma and religions are the same? People who claim that All Religions are same are ignorant of Religions as well as of Dharma. I would like to say that there may be many religions, but there is only one Dharma and that is the Sanatana Dharma or Vaidika Dharma or Hindu Dharma. We are belittling this Dharma by calling it religion or even worse, calling it faith. Religion when elaborated properly according to the Western concept turns out to be dogmatic and cannot be accepted as valid or cannot be compared to Sanatana Hindu Dharma which is vast, profound and timeless.


“Foundations of Dharma”– Shri Swami Iswarananda Giri

“What is Hinduism?” – Shri Swami Dayananda Saraswathi

“Hindu view of Christianity and Islam” – Shri Ram Swarup

“Defence of Hindu Soceity” – Shri Sita Ram Goel

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 03-15-2009
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Ananthapuri Transformed into a Virtual Yagashala</b>
12/03/2009 13:14:10 

<b>Women devotees flood Kerala capital for Attukal Pongala</b>

T'PURAM: Spirals of smoke rose from hundreds of firewood stoves here Tuesday as <b>an estimated three million women devotees from Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu converged on the path to the Attukal Bhagavathi temple and cooked rice offerings for the goddess.</b>

The offering is made on the penultimate day of the 10-day-long Attukal Pongala festival, which is often referred to as the equivalent of the Sabarimala pilgrimage for women.

Attukal Bhagavathi is believed to be an incarnation of Kannaki, the central character of the Tamil epic "Silappathikaaram".

<b>"This time the number of devotees has crossed three million.</b> The women are seated on roads. This year several more roads have been occupied compared to last year," Sreekumaran Nair, the temple superintendent, told IANS.

Only those women who had arrived three days ago managed to get a place to cook near the temple. About 20 sq km around the temple was choc-a-bloc with devotees.

The Guinness Book of World Records listed it as the world's largest annual gathering of women in 1997, when 1.5 million devotees converged here on Feb 23.

"We have posted 2,000 policemen and 500 women constables besides 15 deputy superintendents of police and three superintendents. We have put up close circuit cameras at all important points," Commissioner of Police Ravada Chandrasekhar told reporters.

Miss World Parvathy Omanakuttan said this was the second she was offering pongala.

"Last time I won the Miss India crown and became the Miss World runner up after I cam here. Amma is really powerful and one really experiences a feeling of satisfaction after doing this pongala. I am really happy I am here," said Omanakuttan.

Women devotees arrived here with bricks, firewood, rice, jaggery and coconut to cook the rice offering. They lit their stoves after the chief priest lit the main stove in the compound at about 10.30 a.m.

According to legend, Kannaki destroyed Madurai in Tamil Nadu after the king of Madurai wrongfully imposed the death penalty on her husband. After that, Kannaki travelled to Kerala, where she rested for a while at Attukal and women are said to have cooked pongala to appease her.

Like every year, film actresses also turned up at the temple to prepare the pongala offering.

"This is the 10th time I am offering pongala. I believe Amma is really powerful. One has to be here to experience the goodness," said film and TV actress Chippy.

Malayalam superstar Suresh Gopi, who is present alongside the priests when the main stove is lit every year, said that he feels fortunate to be able to participate in the event.

"I keep aside all other work to be inside the temple for the lighting of the main stove. Despite the massive crowd, everything takes place with absolute calmness," he said.

The day of the Attukala Pongala is a holiday in the district except for IT firms.

"The whole city seems like a holy place due to the festival. I will do my best to see that this is turned into a national pilgrimage centre," said Lok Sabha secretary general P.D.T. Achary.

The railways ran special trains and added additional coaches for the devotees.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Some pictures of the lovely Parvathy Omanakuttan mentioned above (not from the particular sacred occasion of Attukal Pongala, but still from a visit to a Temple and another Hindu event):
<img src='' border='0' alt='user posted image' />

<img src='' border='0' alt='user posted image' />

<img src='' border='0' alt='user posted image' />

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 03-16-2009
<b>Tiruvabarana Goshayatra</b>
S.V. Badri
01 Feb 2009

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 04-03-2009

One of the random quotations to the side at HK:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Our object, our claim is that we shall not perish as a nation, but <b>live</b> as a nation.
Sri Aurobindo Ghosh<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->Revitalising.
Who doesn't love his fearlessness.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - HareKrishna - 05-01-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-Husky+Feb 14 2009, 05:19 AM-->QUOTE(Husky @ Feb 14 2009, 05:19 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->[Vishnu's heart/chest always.) Some Vaishnavas have Krishna as their centre, others always add Radha, or else they keep Krishna with Rukmini. They all hold that these are ultimately my Mahavishnu and Lakshmi - well, in the case of Rukmini and Sita.

So much for my trying to keep things 'short'.
You cant put any god to do any job ;every god have his favorite job and his own personal purpose or goal .
And Krishna have his favorite activites and his goal ,the Supreme Goal.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 05-22-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>"Vettekkaran Paattu" - An Un-common Temple Art of Kerala</b>
17/05/2009 12:53:12 

Vettekkaran Paattu" is an un-common but interesting Temple Art of Kerala. It is performed only in very few number of Vettekkaran Tmples in Kerala (Malabar area and Thrissur District), one of which is located in Ollukkara, near Mannuthy, about 1 Km off the Thrissur - Palakkad highway.

Vettekkaran is believed to be <b>the incarnation of Lord Siva in the guise of Kiraathamoorthy</b>. The "mission" of his disguise was to quench the arroagance or over-proud self -esteem of Arjun that there is nobody else to beat him in archery .

Watch an interesting video in the youtube , <b>how 12,000 pealed coconuts are" thrown- to- break" , in succession, as offering to Lord Vettekkaran</b> There are 10 more video clippings in the series , excerpts colletected in connection with the proceedings of Vettekkaran Pattu<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->With video at link.

2. <!--QuoteBegin-HareKrishna+May 1 2009, 08:09 PM-->QUOTE(HareKrishna @ May 1 2009, 08:09 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->You cant put any god to do any job ;every god have his favorite job and his own personal purpose or goal .
And  Krishna have his favorite activites and his goal ,the Supreme Goal.
[right][snapback]96817[/snapback][/right]<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->There are different views on the same. Some who see the Gods as many think each God has his/her own job. Some who see Gods as many, think each God has all the jobs. Some who see all the Gods as the same see them as different manifestations to do different jobs. Some who see all the Gods as the same God see them as all having the same abilities and attributes.

All of this holds.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 05-28-2009

Quoted in article at
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->"Many of us, utterly overcome by Tamas, the dark and heavy demon of inertia, are saying nowadays that it is impossible, that India is decayed, bloodless and lifeless, too weak ever to recover; that our race is doomed to extinction. It is a foolish and idle saying. No man or nation need be weak unless he so chooses, no man or nation need perish unless he deliberately chooses extinction” – Aurobindo, “Bhawani Mandir”

“One who may die but will not perish has life everlasting” – Lao Tse<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->(What can one say about Aurobindo. He's just perfect in every way.)

The following actually belongs in the Other Natural Traditions thread, but it's related to the last line in the above quoteblock:
I think something reminiscent of that saying by Lao Tse - who wrote Tao Te Ching - is also there in the exquisite Chinese animation about the Tao God Nezha's life. IIRC, after the little child Nezha has killed himself as a sacrifice to save his nation, and is reborn and wakes up to the Taoist Rishi Tai-Yi and the Crane who brought him back, he asks (moved to find himself alive) "I'm alive?" and then rushes to hug his Guru. The Rishi explains to Nezha that "You are a Spirit that is Indestructible" (and hence, also not to be contained by death). And in the end, once Bhagavan Nezha has taught the Dragons humility by defeating them and Nezha is going back to the heavens on his Deer Vahanam, it has the narrator explaining how "The spirit is free. Because he who knows how to live has no place for death to enter."

If people hadn't seen it already last time the adverts rolled around, at least
watch his Rebirth - because it is <i>absolute poetry in motion</i>: Starts at around 1:30 mins into part 6 at youtube and goes upto ~4 mins). While Nezha's moves when he is waking up again are reminiscent of Yoga or Bharatanatyam (well, Bharatanatyam is a form of Yoga, so...) - it's probably the Taoist practice of Tai-Chi that the child God is doing. It even does an almost Nataraja-pose <!--emo&Smile--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile.gif' /><!--endemo-->
His beautiful feet in golasu (sp?), his bracelets and the tilakam on his forehead - I'm sure that 'simple' character designs never looked quite so spectacular and captured the Divine quite so perfectly. <i>Always</i> astounding. One of those things that are really worth watching - and rewatching - in life.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - HareKrishna - 05-31-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-Husky+May 22 2009, 11:38 AM-->QUOTE(Husky @ May 22 2009, 11:38 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->1.

2. <!--QuoteBegin-HareKrishna+May 1 2009, 08:09 PM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(HareKrishna @ May 1 2009, 08:09 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->You cant put any god to do any job ;every god have his favorite job and his own personal purpose or goal .
And  Krishna have his favorite activites and his goal ,the Supreme Goal.
[right][snapback]96817[/snapback][/right]<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->There are different views on the same. Some who see the Gods as many think each God has his/her own job. Some who see Gods as many, think each God has all the jobs. Some who see all the Gods as the same see them as different manifestations to do different jobs. Some who see all the Gods as the same God see them as all having the same abilities and attributes.

All of this holds.
If your Gods are all and each one infinite in power then how they get along whithout a center?and they are relative to each other so were is the absolute(Brahman)?
Now dont tell me that Brahman is just an impersonal energy .

If they are not infinite then how they will save you ?
an least hellenikos tell their opinion very clearly while you hindus dont even know the basics of your religions.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 06-03-2009
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->‘Relevance of Sri Aurobindo’s ideologies has increased’
02/06/2009 02:00:32

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The relevance of the ideologies of Sri Aurobindo has increased in the present society, Bharatiya Vichara Kendram director P Parameswaran has said.

He was inaugurating the centenary celebrations of the `Utharappara’ speech by Sri Aurobindo organised by the Sri Aurobindo Cultural Society in Thiruvananthapuram on Saturday.

  ``In the present society, where the communist vision has failed and capitalism has suffered crisis, philosophies of Sri Aurobindo are very much significant. What India should be after Independence was the content of the famous `Utharappara’ speech made by Aurobindo,’’ Parameswarji said.

Sri Aurobindo Cultural Society president O Rajagopal presided over the function. Poet Vishnu Narayanan Namboothiri also attended the function.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd--><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Sundararaman
02/06/2009 05:06:29  <b>Aurobindo's Speech</b>
Shri Aurobindo, in his article “A Task Unaccomplished” in Karma Yogin (exactly a hundred years ago on 3rd July 1909) says: “No policy can be successful which does not take into view the end to be attained and the amount and nature of the effort needed to effect it…To place before himself a great object and then to shrink in the name of expediency from the expenditure and sacrifice called for in its pursuit is not prudence but ineptitude. If you will be prudent, be prudent from the beginning. Fix your object low and creep towards it. But if you fix your object in the skies, it will not do to crawl on the ground and because your eyes are sometimes lifted towards the ideal imagine you are progressing while you murmur to those behind, “Yes, yes, our ideal is in the skies because that is the place for ideals, but we are on the ground and the ground is our proper place of motion. Let us creep, let us creep.” Such inconsistency will only dishearten the nation, unnerve its strength and confuse its intelligence. You must either bring down your ideal to the ground or find wings or aeroplane to lift you to the skies. There is no middle course.” (page 92 and 93 of “The complete works of Sri Aurobindo Volume VIII”)

This nicely sums up the predicament of BJP today.
This and other aspects are discussed by me in<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Guest - 06-04-2009

<b>Secret Hinduism in middle-east still surviving from ancient times </b>

Secret Hinduism in middle-east still surviving from ancient times. This is the Yazidi or Yezidi religion among few Kurds the descendents of ancient Indian Immigrant settlers called also the Hurrians (Mittani and Hittites). Unfortunately sometimes mistaken as devil-worship due to their secret nature for survival. Their holy places the exact lookalike of hindu temples tells the tale. However many other influences have distorted it to such an extent that it could be best called a syncretism of Islam and Christianity with Hindu/Vedic roots.

The Yazidi or Yezidi (Kurdish: Êzidîtî or Êzidî) are adherents of a small Middle Eastern religious sect with ancient origins. Yazidi belong to the minor of the three branches of Yazdânism. The other branches of Yazdânism, Alevism and Yarsanism, differ from Yazidism by recognizing Islamic taqiyya (dissimulation). The three branches are geographically split and mutual contacts are rare.
Yazidis are primarily ethnic Kurds, and most live near Mosul, Iraq with smaller communities in Syria, Turkey, Iran, Georgia and Armenia, and number around 500,000 individuals in total, but estimates vary on their population size, partially due to the Yazidi tradition of secretiveness when asked about one's confession. Yazidi refugees also live in Europe.


The origins of Yazidism are ultimately shrouded in Middle Eastern prehistory. Although the Yazidis speak Kurdish, their religion shows strong influence from archaic Levantine and Islamic religions. Their principal holy site is in Mosul, Iraq. The Yazidis own name for themselves is Êzidî or Êzîdî or, in some areas, Dasinî (the last, strictly speaking, a tribal name). Some scholars have derived the name Yazidi from Old Iranic yazata (divine being), while others say it is a derivation from Umayyad Caliph Yazid I (Yazid bin Muawiyah), revered by the Yazidis as an incarnation of the divine figure Sultan Ezi (this is no longer widely accepted). Yazidis, themselves, believe that their name is derived from the word Yezdan or Êzid meaning God; however in ancient vernaculars of Kurdistan such as Urartian the term 'izid-u' (vb.) means 'command' or 'admonish'. The Yazidis' cultural practices are observably Kurdish, and almost all speak Kurmanjî (Northern Kurdish), with the exception of the villages of Baiqa and Bahazane in Northern Iraq, where Arabic is spoken. Kurmanjî is the language of almost all the orally transmitted religious traditions of the Yazidis. Thus, religious origins are somewhat complex.
The religion of the Yazidis is a highly syncretistic one: Sufi influence and imagery can be seen in their religious vocabulary, especially in the terminology of their esoteric literature, but much of the mythology is non-Islamic, and their cosmogonies apparently have many points in common with those of ancient Iranic religions. Early writers attempted to describe Yazidi origins, broadly speaking, in terms of Islam, or Iranic, or sometimes even pagan religions; however, publications since the 1990s have shown such an approach to be over-simplistic.
The origin of the Yazidi religion is now usually seen by scholars as a complex process of syncretism, whereby the belief-system and practices of a local faith had a profound influence on the religiosity of adherents of the Adawiyya sufi order living in the Kurdish mountains, and caused it to deviate from Islamic norms relatively soon after the death of its founder, Sheikh Adî ibn Mustafa who is said to be of Umayyad descent. He settled in the valley of Laliş (some thirty-six miles north-east of Mosul) in the early 12th century CE. Shaeikh Adî himself, a figure of undoubted orthodoxy, enjoyed widespread influence. He died in 1162, and his tomb at Lalish is a focal point of Yazidi pilgrimage. During the fourteenth century, important Kurdish tribes whose sphere of influence stretched well into what is now Turkey (including, for a period, the rulers of the principality of Jazira) are cited in historical sources as Yazidi.

Religious beliefs

In the Yazidi worldview, God created the world, which is now in the care of a Heptad of seven Holy Beings, often known as Angels or heft sirr (the Seven Mysteries). Pre-eminent among these is Melek Taus (Tawûsê Melek in Kurdish), the Peacock Angel, who is equated with Satan or Devil by some Muslims and Christians. "The reason for the Yazidis reputation of being devil worshipers, is connected to the other name of Melek Taus, Shaytan, the same name as the Koran's for Satan." However, according to the Kurdish linguist Jamal Nebez, the word Taus is most probably derived from the Greek and is related to the words Zeus and Theos, alluding to the meaning of God. Accordingly, Malak Ta'us is God's Angel, and this is how Yezidis themselves see Melek Taus or Taus-e-Malak.
Yazidis believe that Melek Ta’us is not a source of evil or wickedness. They consider him as the leader of the archangels, not a fallen angel. Also they say that the source of evil is in the heart and spirit of humans themselves, not in Melek Ta’us. The active forces in their religion are Melek Ta’us and Sheik Adii. The Kitêba Cilwe (Book of Illumination) which claims to be the words of Melek Ta’us, and which presumably represents Yazidi belief, states that he allocates responsibilities, blessings and misfortunes as he sees fit and that it is not for the race of Adam to question him. Sheikh Adii believed that the spirit of Melek Ta’us is the same as his own, perhaps as a re-incarnation. He is believed to have said : "I was present when Adam was living in Paradise, and also when Nemrud threw Abraham in fire. I was present when God said to me: (You are the ruler and Lord on the Earth). God, the compassionate, gave me seven earths and throne of the heaven."
Yazidi accounts of creation differ from that of Christianity and Islam. They believe that God first created Melek Ta’us from his own illumination (Ronahî in the Kurdish) and the other seven archangels were created later on. God ordered Melek Ta’us not to bow to other beings. Then God created the other archangels and ordered them to bring him dust (Ax) from the Earth (Erd) and build the body of Adam. Then God gave life to Adam from his own breath and instructed all archangels to bow to Adam. All archangels obeyed except Melek Ta’us. As God inquired, Malak Ta’us replied, "How can I submit to another being! I am from your illumination while Adam is made of dust." Then God praised him and made him the leader of all angels and his deputy on the Earth. Hence the Yazidis believe that Melek Ta’us is the representative of God on the face of the Earth, and comes down to the Earth on the first Wednesday of Nisan (March/April). Yezidis celebrate this day as the New Year's day. God created Melek Ta’us from his illumination (Ronahî ) on this day. Yazidis argue that the order to bow to Adam was only a test for Melek Ta’us, since if God says something then it happens (Bibe, dibe). In other words, God could have made him submit to Adam, but gave Ta’us the choice as a test. They believe that their respect and praise for Melek Ta’us is a way to acknowledge his majestic and sublime nature. This idea is called "Knowledge of the Sublime" (Zanista Ciwaniyê ). Sheikh Adii has observed the story of Melek Ta’us and believed in him.

Yazidis believe that good and evil both exist in the mind and spirit of human beings. It depends on the humans, themselves, which one they choose. In this process, their devotion to Melek Ta’us is essential, since it was he who was given the same choice between good and evil by God, and chose the good.
Yazidis, which have much in common with those of the Ahl-e Haqq (in western Iran), state that the world created by God was at first a pearl. It remained in this very small and enclosed state for some time (often a magic number such as forty or forty thousand years) before being remade in its current state. During this period the Heptad were called into existence, God made a covenant with them and entrusted the world to them. Besides Melek Ta’us, members of the Heptad (the Seven), who were called into existence by God at the beginning of all things, include Sheikh Adii Ibn Mustafa, his companion Shaikh Hasan, and a group known as the four Mysteries, Shamsadin, Fakhradin, Sajadin and Naserdin. The Yazidi holy books are the Kitêba Cilwe (Book of Revelation) and the Mishefa Reş (Black Book).
Two key and interrelated features of Yazidism are: a) a preoccupation with religious purity and b) a belief in metempsychosis. The first of these is expressed in the system of caste, the food laws, the traditional preferences for living in Yazidi communities, and the variety of taboos governing many aspects of life. The second is crucial; Yazidis traditionally believe that the Seven Holy Beings are periodically reincarnated in human form, called a koasasa.
A belief in the reincarnation of lesser Yazidi souls also exists. Like the Ahl-e Haqq, the Yazidis use the metaphor of a change of garment to describe the process, which they call kiras guhorîn in Kurdish (changing the garment). Alongside this, Yazidi mythology also includes descriptions of heaven and hell, and other traditions incorporating these ideas into a belief-system that includes reincarnation.


Yazidi society is hierarchical. The secular leader is a hereditary emir or prince, whereas a chief sheikh heads the religious hierarchy. The Yazidi are strictly endogamous. In addition, members of the three Yazidi castes, the murids, sheikhs and pirs, marry only within their group.

Religious practices


Yazidis have five daily prayers: Nivêja berîspêdê (Dawn Prayer), Nivêja rojhilatinê (Sunrise Prayer), Nivêja nîvro (Noon Prayer), Nivêja êvarî (Afternoon Prayer), Nivêja rojavabûnê (Sunset Prayer). The worshipers should turn their face toward the sun, and for the noon prayer, they should face toward Laliş. Such prayer should be accompanied by certain gestures, including kissing the rounded neck (gerîvan) of the sacred shirt (kiras). The daily prayer services must not be performed in the presence of outsiders, and are always performed in the direction of the sun. Wednesday is the holy day but Saturday is the day of rest. There is also a three-day feast in December.


The most important ritual is the annual six-day pilgrimage to the tomb of Sheikh Adi in Lalish, north of Mosul, Iraq. A sacred microcosm of the world, as it were, it contains not only many shrines dedicated to the koasasa, but a number of other landmarks corresponding to other sites or symbols of significance in other faiths, including Pirra selat (Serat Bridge) and a mountain called Mt. Arafat. The two sacred springs are called Zamzam and Kaniya sipî (The White Spring). If possible, Yazidis make at least one pilgrimage to Lalish during their lifetime, and those living in the region try to attend at least once a year for the autumn Feast of the Assembly which is celebrated from 23rd of Elul to 1st of Tishrei (September). During the celebration, Yazidi bathe in the river, wash figures of Malak Ta’us and light hundreds of lamps in the tombs of Sheikh Adii and other saints. They also sacrifice an ox, which is one reason they have been connected to Mithraism, in addition to the presence of the dog and serpent in their iconography. The sacrifice of the ox is meant to declare the arrival of Fall and to ask for precipitation during winter in order to bring back life to the Earth in the next Spring. Moreover, in astrology, the ox is the symbol of Tishrei.


The Yazidi New Year falls in Spring (somewhat later than Equinox). There is some lamentation by women in the cemeteries, to the accompaniment of the music of the Qewals, but the festival is generally characterized by joyous events: the music of dehol (drum) and zorna (shawm), communal dancing and meals, the decorating of eggs. Similarly the village Tawaf, a festival held in the spring in honor of the patron of the local shrine, has secular music, dance and meals in addition to the performance of sacred music. Another important festival is the Tawusgeran (circulation of the peacock) where Qewals and other religious dignitaries visit Yazidi villages, bringing the senjaq, sacred images representing the peacock and associated with Malak Ta’us. These are venerated, taxes are collected from the pious, sermons are preached, and holy water distributed. The greatest festival of the year for ordinary Yazidis is the Cejna Cemaiya (Feast of the Assembly) at Lalish, a seven-day occasion. A focus of widespread pilgrimage, this is an important time for social contact and affirmation of identity. The religious center of the event is the belief in an annual gathering of the Heptad in the holy place at this time. Rituals practiced include the sacrifice of a bull at the shrine of Shaikh Shams and the practice of sema.

Purity and taboos

The Yazidis' concern with religious purity, and their reluctance to mix elements perceived to be incompatible, is shown not only in their caste system, but also in various taboos affecting everyday life. Some of these, such as those on exogamy or on insulting or offending men of religion, are widely respected. Others, such as the prohibition of eating lettuce or wearing the color blue, are often ignored when men of religion are not present. Others still are less widely known and may be localized. The purity of the four elements, Earth, Air, Fire, and Water, is protected by a number of taboos–against spitting on earth, water, or fire, for instance. These may reflect ancient Iranian preoccupations, as apparently do the taboos concerning bodily refuse, hair, and menstrual blood. Too much contact with non-Yazidis is also polluting. In the past Yazidis avoided military service which would have led them to live among Muslims, and were forbidden to share such items as cups or razors with outsiders. Auditory resemblance may lie behind the taboo against eating lettuce, whose name koas resembles Kurdish pronunciations of koasasa.


Yazidi are dominantly monogamous but chiefs may have more than one wife. Children are baptized at birth and circumcision is common but not required. Dead are buried in conical tombs immediately after death and buried with hands crossed.
Yazidi are exclusive; clans do not intermarry even with other Kurds and accept no converts. They claim that they are descended only from Adam. The strongest punishment is expulsion, which is also effectively excommunication because the soul of the exiled is forfeit.
As a demiurge figure, Malak Ta’us is often identified by orthodox Muslims as a Shaitan, a Muslim term denoting a devil or demon who deceives true believers. In Islam, a common deception by shaytan is to assign partners to Allah. Thus, the Yazidi have been accused of devil worship. Because of this and due to their pre-Islamic beliefs, they have been oppressed by their Muslim neighbors. Such oppression of Yezidis was exceptionally harsh during the rule of the Ottoman Empire.


The tale of the Yazidis' origin found in the Black Book gives them a distinctive ancestry and expresses their feeling of difference from other races. Before the roles of the sexes were determined, Adam and Eve quarreled about which of them provided the creative element in the begetting of children. Each stored their seed in a jar which was then sealed. When Eve's was opened it was full of insects and other unpleasant creatures, but inside Adam's jar was a beautiful boy-child. This lovely child, known as son of Jar grew up to marry a houri and became the ancestor of the Yazidis. Therefore, the Yazidi are regarded as decending from Adam alone, while other humans are descendants of both Adam and Eve.

Recent history

It is alleged by some that during the regime of Saddam Hussein, Yazidis were considered to be Arabs and maneuvered to oppose the Kurds, in order to tilt the ethnic balance in northern Iraq, but this cannot be entirely substantiated. It is known, however, that the Yazidi's unique identity, despite being ethnically Kurdish, was in fact used by the Baathist regime to isolate one from the other. However, both groups fought against Baathist troops, often in joint Peshmerga units. Since the 2003 occupation of Iraq, the Kurds want the Yazidi to be recognized as ethnic Kurds to increase their numbers and influence.

The Chermera temple (meaning “40 Men” in the Yezidi dialect) on the highest peak on the Sinjar mountains in northern Iraq. The temple is so old that no one remembers how it came to have that name but it is believed to derive from the burial of 40 men on the mountain-top site. Picture taken by an American Soldier from the 334th Signal Company, 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, April 2004.
Historically, the Yazidis are a religious minority of the Kurds. Purportedly, they have existed since 2000 BCE. Estimates of the number of Yazidis vary between 100,000 and 800,000, the latter being the claim of their website. According to the same site, Yazidi refugees in Germany number 30,000.
Feleknas Uca, a Kurdish Member of the European Parliament for Germany's Party of Democratic Socialism was the world's only Yazidi parliamentarian until the Iraqi legislature was elected in 2005.
In her memoir of her service in an intelligence unit of the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division in Iraq during 2003 and 2004, Kayla Williams (2005) records being stationed in northern Iraq near the Syrian border in an area inhabited by "Yezidis". The Yezidis were Kurdish-speaking, but did not consider themselves Kurds, and expressed to Williams a fondness for America and Israel. She was able to learn only a little about the nature of their religion: she thought it very ancient, and concerned with angels. She describes a mountain-top Yezidi shrine as "a small rock building with objects dangling from the ceiling", and alcoves for the placement of offerings. She reports that local Muslims considered the Yezidis to be devil worshippers.
It has been claimed the Chermera temple shrine is tied to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. They believe God sent Azaziel or Al-Malek Al-Tawwus, known as the Peacock angel as well as chief of all angels, to move the stone that blocked Christ’s grave and that the angel stayed at the site of the temple.

Views of outsiders, fiction and stereotypes

As the Yazidi hold religious beliefs that are mostly unfamiliar to outsiders, many non-Yazidi people have written about them and ascribed facts to their beliefs that have dubious historical validity. For example, horror writer H. P. Lovecraft made a reference to "... the Yezidi clan of devil-worshippers" in his short story "The Horror at Red Hook".
A fictional Yazidi character of note is the super-powered police officer "King Peacock", of the Top 10 series (and related comics). He is portrayed as a kind, peaceful, character with a broad knowledge of religion and mythology. He is depicted as conservative, ethical and highly principled in family life. An incredibly powerful martial artist, he is able to destroy matter, a power that he claims is derived from communicating with Malak Ta’us.
The Yazidis, perhaps because of their secrecy, also have a place in modern occultism. G. I. Gurdjieff mentions Yazidis several times in his books Meetings with Remarkable Men and Beelzebub's Tales to his Grandson.

This is a view from Secret Doctrine-II by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky:
Yezidis (Arabic) [possibly from Persian yazdan god; or the 2nd Omayyad Caliph, Yezid (720-4); or Persian city Yezd] A sect dwelling principally in Kurdistan, Armenia, and the Caucasus, who call themselves Dasni. Their religious beliefs take on the characteristics of their surrounding peoples, inasmuch as, openly or publicly, they regard Mohammed as a prophet, and Jesus Christ as an angel in human form. Points of resemblance are found with ancient Zoroastrian and Assyrian religion. The principal feature of their worship, however, is Satan under the name of Muluk-Taus. However, it is not the Christian Satan, nor the devil in any form; their Muluk-Taus is the hundred- or thousand-eyed cosmic wisdom, pictured as a bird." (the peacock)
Yazidism has also been claimed as an influence on Aleister Crowley's Thelema. In addition, The Order of the Peacock Angel, an obscure secret society based in the London suburb of Putney loosely based its rites on Yazidi beliefs as well.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 06-04-2009

I remember reading about them some years earlier. But until recently they were called some sort of Zoroastrians (by everyone except the Zoroastrians themselves). They have less in common with Hindus than with Mazdeans.

Old article:
by Noshir H. Dadrawala<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
(The answer the Parsees give is: no they're not.)
And related: page - old page, archived now.

Kurdish people are an Iranian community; I think the Yezidis practise some evolute of an Iranian religion combined with huge amounts of late ME religions and ideologies.
(As for reincarnation, in some Iranian forums, I think I read that a few Iranian traditions/communities had some sort of reincarnation concept too. But as I have no links for people here to verify, this is neither here nor there.)
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Background: the Yezidi
Yezidis are members of a pre-Islamic Kurdish minority sect who live primarily in northern Iraq, with other populations scattered around Syria, Turkey, Georgia, Russia and Armenia.

They number around 500,000 in total, although that figure is inexact because of the Yezidi tradition of secrecy when asked about their religious beliefs.

Most speak Kurdish and believe their name comes from the ancient Kurdish word Yezdan, meaning God. Another explanation for the name is their presumed descent from supporters of the Umayyad caliph Yazid I.

Their religion, whose origins are shrouded in middle east prehistory, is highly syncretic, attempting to reconcile disparate or contradictory beliefs. It combines aspects of <b>Zoroastrian, Manichaean, Jewish, Nestorian Christian and Islamic faith.</b><!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

It is silly to start deciding they are Hindu when they're not. Leave them alone.

From the previous post:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Yazidis have five daily prayers: Nivêja berîspêdê (Dawn Prayer), Nivêja rojhilatinê (Sunrise Prayer), Nivêja nîvro (Noon Prayer), Nivêja êvarî (Afternoon Prayer), Nivêja rojavabûnê (Sunset Prayer). <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->Iranian religion is where islam gets the practice of praying 5 times a day. The same is/was(?) there in Zoroastrianism too apparently.

This web page declares they are Zoroastrians (which Zoroastrians reject) but indicates something else that's interesting - Islamic Castaism:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->In the courtyard, two men and two women dressed in white, who have taken an oath of celibacy, light 366 oil lamps.

"So that we don't forget the souls of our saints and prophets," explained their superior, Pil Charo, 32.

Most Yezidis speak Kurmanji, the most widely spoken dialect of Kurdish, but not all Sunni Muslim Kurds accept the Yezidis as part of their own ethnic group.

<b>Asked about the Yezidis, several Sunni Kurds said they would not share a meal with a Yezidi because they considered the community "unclean".

"Our parents told us that we could go to eat at the house of a Christian or a Jew, but not with them," said one Kurd.</b><!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<i>Yezidis are of their own religion</i> - a Middle-Eastern-Iranian religion - which makes sense considering the location of Kurdistan. It can't be so hard to accept that they are standalone.

It is not Hindu Dharma.
Why do Hindus always jump at anything that is a non-christoislamic religion as 'therefore' being Hindu? <!--emo&:blink:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/blink.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='blink.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Guest - 06-05-2009

<b>'Wedding of Muslim couple as per Hindu rites illegal'</b>

<img src='' border='0' alt='user posted image' />

Wedding of a Muslim couple solemnised as per Hindu rites during a mass marriage is null and void and against the Islamic law, leading Islamic seminary Darul-Uloom Deoband has said.

The ruling came following protests over a Muslim couple-- Akbal Ali and Trabunnisa -- taking part in a mass marriage programme organised by an NGO in Gorakhpur district, seminary officials said.

Since they were the only Muslim couple among a group of 27, the organisers failed to make arrangements for a 'nikah' ceremony and they tied the knot as per Hindu rituals.

"Marriage of a Muslim couple is illegal if there is no Nikah ceremony. Islam does not permit such a marriage," Deputy in-charge of the Deoband Fatwa Department Mufti Ahsan Kasmi said.

Another cleric from the seminary Maulana M Sufiyana also said that such marriages are against the Shariat.

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 07-04-2009

<b>Know more about Hindu Scholar Sri A K B Nair</b>

Hero. Awesome.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Sangh schools score high in Orissa</b>
03/07/2009 09:30:47

By Debabrata Mohanty at Indian Express

Bhubaneswar :  The High School Certificate examinations in Orissa have thrown up a surprise result—hundreds of Saraswati Shishu Vidya Mandirs (SVM) have performed exceptionally well with 44 of the top 102 students coming from the Sangh Parivar-run school network. As many as seven of the top 10 ranks are from SVMs.

While Bibek Bishal Mehena from Saraswati Vidya Mandir in Rourkela secured the top rank, Sanket Dash of Saraswati Shishu Vidya Mandir in Berhampur town and Ansuman Tripathy of Saraswati Vidya Mandir in Bolangir secured the second and third positions respectively in the results declared on Tuesday. Last year too, these RSS-run schools had done well with 15 of its students securing top-20 positions. Trends over the past six years have shown that SVMs generally do better than other schools in the state.

From humble beginnings in 1978, the march of these RSS-run schools is a success story that has not been highlighted much. Today, there are over 11,000 Acharyas and Gurumas (teachers) in 739 SVMs across the state who live a no-frills life to teach 1.8 lakh students from kindergarten to Class XII for a pittance.

While critics harp at the saffronisation of little minds by the Sangh Parivar, parents seem to be happy with the performance of the Saraswati Shishu Vidya Mandirs that dot the towns and villages of Orissa. Pitabas Mehena, father of this year’s topper, Bibek Bishal Mehena, credits his son’s success to the meticulous planning of the teachers and the perfect synergy between students, parents and teachers. “Though the teachers get lower salaries than their counterparts in government-run high schools, no one can beat them when it comes to dedication towards their students. For them it is a mission,” said Mehena, a pharmacist in a government hospital.

As part of its stringent evaluation system, each student has to appear in at least seven examinations in an academic year—five monthly, one half-yearly and an annual test. No wonder, of the 6,500-odd SVM students who wrote the exam this year, about 4,500 secured first division.

Educationists agree that the emotional commitment of the teachers to the students in these schools is what differentiates them from the rest. “In government schools, teachers teach just for the sake of it. In Shishu Mandirs, they attach a lot of ethical value to the education,” said Dharanidhar Nath, president of Board of Secondary Examination, the body that conducts the HSC examination.

Ironically, the RSS, known for its scorn for Christian missionaries, works on each students with the same zeal as missionary schools. And like the missionary schools, the SVMs also don’t depend on government grants. “We don’t get any monetary help from the government. The students pay fees ranging from Rs 50 to 200 a month as per their capability. But we do lay stress on character building and integrity,” said Gobinda Mohanty, Organisational Secretary of the Sikshya Vikas Samiti, the body that oversees the smooth running of these schools.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->One of the comments:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Tatha Mukherjee</b>
03/07/2009 10:15:45  Great work
This is no surprize.

For last 80 years, best students, results in state of West Bengal comes from Ramakrishna Mission schools.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - acharya - 07-08-2009


This is just a small part of big picture, that is Bhaarat.

Astika philosophies of Ancient India

The ideologies are divided into two categories.

1. Aastika - Those who accept the authority of Vedas
2. Naastika - Those who refuse to accept authority of Vedas

Belief in god is not mandatory. There are Theist philosophies (Ishwar-Vaad) and Atheist philosophies (Nirishwar Vaad) in both categories.

1. Astika and Atheist - Saamkhya, Poorva Mimamsa, Nyaya, Vaisheshika
2. Astika and vaguely Theist - Yoga
3. Aastika and staunchly Theist - Vedanta, Uttara Mimamsa

Vedanta is further divided into three major sub-categories

a. Advaita (non-duality - Sarvam Khalu idam Brahmam - Everything that exists is Brahman)
b. Vishishta-advaita (special non-duality)
c. Dvaita (Duality - Ishwara and his creation are separate)

Brahma Satyam jagat Mithya

The schools like Vaishnava, Shaiva, Ganapatya, Bhakti etc fall under Dvaita Vedanta.

4. Naastika and Atheist - Bauddha, Jaina, Charvaka, Ajivika
5. Naastika and Theist - Sikh pantha

Then there are schools of Tantra which broadly lays between theism and atheism. The Vajrayana Bauddha Tantra Maarga is primarily atheist, while Aastika Tantra (Vaam-maarga) is theist.

All these philosophies make up the conglomerate of Dhaarmic traditions.

Propagation of Dharmic memes in India

Clustering of Dharmic traditions

Propagation of Dharmic memes and its impact of concept of Bhaarat<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - HareKrishna - 07-08-2009

There is something incorect in the scheme from above.
Vaishnava and shaiva dont follow only the dvaita philosophy but also vishishta-advaita,advaita,dvaita-advaita and bheda-abheda depending one each particlar school.

Advaita (proposed by Shankara) mean that there is only Brahman whitout atributes (hence is impersonal)and the creation is inseparable from Brahman(the Absolute).
Vishishta-advaita(by Ramanuja) mean that Brahman has atributes(hence is personal) and the creation is inseparable from Brahman(the Absolute).
Dvaita(by Madhva) mean that Brahman has atributes(personal) and creation is separated from Brahman though totaly dependent on Brahman.
Dvaita-advaita mean that Brahman is both the same and different from the creation in the same time.
Bheda-abheda(by Chaitanya )mean that Brahman is both the same and different from the creation in the same time depending of the point of view you look.Also Brahman is both personal(whit atributes) and impersonal(whitout) in the same time.

Also an intersting clasification is by the goal that each hindu want to reach.
There are:
1-material goals-money,health,glory-this goals are pursued by charvakas,some tantrics,some folk hindus.
2-eternal goal of non-activity and lack of atributes(non-difference)-is pursued by buddhists,smartas(advaita, Shankara),some vaishnavas and shaivas,some tantrics.
3-eternal goal of activity and the infinity of atributes in action meaning a life in the i nfinit joyful heaven of Brahman-Bhagavan-is pursued by most of vaishnavas and some shaivas(though the goal of devoted bhaktis is not the eternal happiness but having total love for Bhagavan).

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - HareKrishna - 07-08-2009

where christianity and islam fit in the above scheme?
Both fit in the dvaita class(creation separated from God).

In the personal-impersonal scheme they fit :
-islam (acordingly whit islamic theologists)-God have no atributes(though it have a will),usualy negative aproach(God is nothing of what it is).
-christianity(acording whit Dionisios Areopagite shared by orthodox and catholic church)-both negative(God is nothing of what it is)and positive(God is everything of what it is)aproach .Theologians differ in their opinions if God is whit or whitout atributes or both in the same time.

Conclusion-Both christianity and islam have the notions of absolute,dvaita,advaita ,whit atributes(personal) or whitout atributes (impersonal) in some extend meaning that their source(bible,kuran) didnt have a clear philosophic suport so they borowed philosophical schemes from greek philosophers mainly(like gnostics and platonists).

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - ramana - 07-23-2009

On Shiva

Satyam Shivam Sundaram

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Husky - 08-04-2009

<b><i>Not</i></b> muslims but Hindus obviously. Their ancestral Hindu Gods are irresistable:

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Bhadrachalam’s new-age Ramadas is a Muslim</b>
28/07/2009 23:45:06  Rakesh Reddy VK/ BV Ramana Reddy -

BHADRACHALAM: At the stroke of dawn, every day, melodious Nadaswaram
wafts through the air as devotees fold their hands in prayer reciting
the Suprabhatam at the famous Sitarama temple here in this town.

For over half-a-century, it has been a tradition to conduct the various
rituals from Suprabhata Seva to Melukolupu and Pavalimpu Sevas to the
accompaniment of Nadaswaram. And offering this unique service are a
Muslim father and son duo. ‘‘My father, Gosaveedu Hasan Saheb, has been
playing Nadaswaram and serving the Lord since 1953, although he was
officially appointed the temple Nadaswaram player only in 1981,’’ says
Kasim Babu, Hasan Saheb’s son, who is also the official Nadaswaram
player of the temple.

Hasan Saheb is a well-known Nadaswaram artist in South India and had
played for the Lord in Tirumala way back in 1978 itself. His steadfast
devotion to the Lord is such that he never plays the Nadaswaram at any
other function.

<b>Kasim, to whom his father has bequeathed the tradition, regrets that
the Endowments Department pays the barest minimum for their services.</b>
(Yes, all Hindu Nadaswaram players in the South are paid but a pittance by the christoterrorist dept "Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments" - HRCE - when playing for their Gods at their Temples.)

But like his father, he says he will not, for anything in the world, give up the service.

The father-son duo’s daily service begins at 4.30 a.m. when they bring
a potful of water for the Lord’s Abhishekam and play Nadaswaram at the
Suprabhata Seva and Melukolupu.

Later on, they render their musical prayers for the Sahasranama
Archana, Nitya Kalyanam, Kacheri and Pavalimpu Seva till 9 p.m. when
the Lord is put to sleep.

By doing so, the father and son are keeping the unique identity and
history of the Bhadrachalam temple alive. The temple was constructed by
Ramadasu during the reign of Tanisha, who according to folklore, had
the darshan of the Lord.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Inspiring Devotion of Sheikh Fakhruddin</b>
28/07/2009 09:54:02 


This is a story of another Bhaktha Ramadas, one of Dasa of Sri Ram's dasa. He is no millionaire, nor a landlord, but a very ordinary painter, moreover a Muslim! (In name only. He and his wife are Hindus in every other way)

Sheikh Fakhruddin's principle is that humaneness is more than any religion.  He used to worship regularly at Kesepally Anjaneya Temple.  He used to be troubled seeing the difficulties faced by ordinary worshippers because of lack of basic amenities.  One day he has decided to construct the Temple with all the amenities.  He has spent all his money and also sold off properties to build a marvellous Temple to the Lord. For amenities of the pilgrims he bought one acre of land near the Temple and built compound wall all around it.  Along with pilgrim rest houses, he organised drinking water facilities.

His life-savings of Rs.8 lakhs were spent by then, yet only half the works were completed.  Then he started seeking donations from the devotees and got Rs.5 lakhs which was spent.  Yet some more work was pending.  In the last moment, he was desperate - not a pie was in hand,even feeding the family was not possible.  He poured out his anguish in front of his better half, Noorjahanbi.  Without a moment's hesitation she suggested that they dispose off their 3 acres of agricultural land and complete the Temple construction.  They realised Rs. 1 lakh from the sale and the work was finally over.  The couple were elated.  They expected a huge turnout for the consecration of the Temple and wanted to do Annadanam.  As there was a drought of philanthrophists, Fakhruddin once again approached his wife.  She told him to withdraw Rs.80,000 that was in the bank for his children's studies.  Withdrawing this cash, they organised a liberal Annadanam feast on the day of consecration.  Fakhruddin claims that it is his good fortune to have Noorjahanbi as his wife.  He confessed having gone without food on several nights.  They declare that the satisfaction of building this Temple has overshadowed their pangs of hunger.  Noorjahanbi says, her husband is a King of large heart!<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (1st Bin) - Bharatvarsh - 08-11-2009

I have a question.

Why the hell are all the male deities with the exception of Parashuraama portrayed without beards & moustaches like they are some kind of pre pubescent boys?

Is there any particular explanation for this.

It's weird considering that in Indian culture moustache is considered a sign of masculinity.