Hindu Heritage Study Program
 
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Hindu Heritage Study Program
 
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Principles and Practice of Hindu Dharma
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-HR 201.05
The Message and Teachings of the Holy Texts of Vedas and Agamas
The Spiritual Knowledge of the Divine, the Supreme and the Universe
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Lesson - 65 :
The Basic Message of Our Teachings
Principles of the Philosophy and Religious Experience
Please see below
for Lesson - 02
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Philosophy is the rational aspect of the faith, in any culture or Religion. It is an integral part of Hindu religious beliefs and culture in India. It is a rational inquiry into the nature of truth or reality, giving clear solutions to many problems of life and human behavior. It shows the ways to get rid of the pain and sufferings, to get happiness and peace of mind and to attain liberation and eternal bliss. Theology is considered important in most world religions. Philosophy is often agnostic and it is not part of the religious study.

Hindus consider philosophy as an integral part of their religious experience. In Hindu culture, theology is well mixed in all aspects of life through its mythology, art, music and dance and they all carry a moral. Hindu Philosophy is not merely a speculation or guess work of a solution for human problems and doubts, but an organized doctrine based on the mystical experience of the Sages and Seers.

Hindu Philosophy gives a clear understanding to the questions of cycle of life and death, the nature of Soul, the Universe and its creator and reasons for joy and sufferings, happiness and sorrow, health and disease and the ultimate understanding of man's relationship with God. It also explains his duties during this birth as well as about his past and his future. It investigates and inquires the Truth and allows us to think and reason in our search for a solution.

Even though the Agamas and Vedas appear to be professing different doctrines, they both are written on the same philosophy but for different population group. The Agamas give us the Theological aspect of our practice with prayers to God in various manifestations. The Vedas give us all the rituals and also the philosophy of our religious practice.

All of them are based on the principle that the Soul is a part of the Divine spirit and is covered by the sheaths of "Upadhis" as an effect of ones Karma. It goes through endless rebirth according to ones Karma to purify itself. Every one should follow his Dharma and perform their duties or Karma without attachment, as an offering to God to receive eternal salvation and liberation as Moksha.

 

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Lesson - 66 :
A Simple Message that looks Complex at the same time.
The Philosophy of Beleif in One God in Many Forms
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The basic principles of the philosophy are essentially presented in a very elaborate manner in the Upanishad portions of the Vedas. It is further explained through the six Dharsanas and subsequent Bhashyas written on them by many great Acharyas who have helped to preserve this treasure for all ages. The system of Vedantha by Vyasa Maharishi is widely followed as the Hindu Philosophy in modern times. A study of the other five Dharsanas is also essential to understand Vedantha philosophy fully.

Various theories of Adhvaitha, Visishta-adhvaitha and Dhvaitha schools explain the philosophy very well. Religion, for Hindus, is experience and full realization of the Divine Spirit in one's heart and not the mere acceptance of certain time-honored dogmas or creeds, reading of scriptures or performing certain rituals or prayers. The rituals were only the means to reach and understand the faith. The one who has fully realized the Divine needs to perform no rituals.

The basic thought of Hinduism, both in the Vedic teachings and Agamic practice, is the belief that there is One formless God or Nirguna Brahman. According to Vedantha, Adhvaitha and Smartha Sampradaya, He manifests through His Yoga Maya as the Saguna Brahman in the material Universe created by Him and He takes the various forms for our understanding. We are created as a part of His Divine spirit which goes through endless cycles of rebirth until it is purified to be liberated, to be united with the Divine, by performing its various Karma according to each one's Dharma.

Explanations of other schools of philosophy, such as Sankhya, Poorva Mimamsa, Dhvaitham, the Bhakthi schools, and followers of Agama forms of worship are slightly different. These will be explained later. Sankhya and Mimamsa are based on the practice of Karma and Rituals as the basic approach without an important role for a God.

The Bhakthi schools support the theories of devotion and surrender to God and that all individual souls are different from the Divine Reality and do not attain equality with God but only serve Him to reach His abode as ultimate liberation from the cycle of Samsara, of birth, death and reincarnation.

 
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While the Karma of one's past essentially determines one's future and all welfare in one's life, devotion to God, prayers and good deeds according to proper Dharma do alter such effects and protect a person and gives them the strength to withstand any bad effects of the Karma.

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This is just like an umbrella and a rain coat that will protect a person from the effects of the bad weather and prevent one from getting wet though the umbrella or the raincoat will not stop the rain or change the weather pattern.

 
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Chapter - 5: The Hindu Philosophy and its Principles - Lessons 65 & 66
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Lessons: ~: 65 & 66 :-: 67 & 68 :-: 69 & 70 :-: 71 & 72 :-: 73 & 74 :-: 75 & 76 :-: 77 & 78 :-: 79 & 80 :~:
 
 
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