All About Hinduism
Hinduism is the oldest living religion. It was not founded by a prophet. No date can be fixed as to the origin of Hinduism. It is not based on dogma, but stresses on practical experience of knowledge. Hinduism is also called sanatana dharma, which means eternal religion. The vedas and upanishads form the core scriptures of Hinduism. These texts are based on the intuitive spiritual experiences of ancient sages.
A Freedom-loving Religion
Hinduism approves all means that can ultimately lead to the final emancipation. The religion gives ample space to freedom of thought, reason, feeling and human will. It does not lay stress on blind faith or unconditional acceptance of dogma. Followers are encouraged to enquire, investigate and reflect. This freedom has resulted in diversity and various types of worship and rituals stand harmoniously together within Hinduism.
Hinduism does not revile non-believers. Its religious hospitality is proverbial. The religion itself is very liberal and universal. Hinduism respects all religions, accepting and honoring truth, emanating from any origin or in any garb.
Emphasis on Practice
Hinduism lays stress on practice and encourages practical spirituality for people of all tastes, temperaments, capacities, and in various stages of spiritual progress. Even a cobbler or scavenger can attain god-realization, while carrying out his daily job. Hindu scriptures emphasize on self-restraint, renunciation and practical application of spirituality to control the senses and mind.
Hinduism does not depend on mere theories. It encourages the practical and rational aspect of philosophy. It is, in fact, a way of life. The ideal Hindu meditates daily seeking self-realization and freedom from the cycle of birth and death. It is said that in India, even a cowherd, peasant or barber, knows something about philosophy, thanks to the efforts of wandering renunciants, who divulge priceless pearls of wisdom through religious songs, in exchange for some rice.