By David Smith
This exam of Hinduism within the context of modernity should be of curiosity to all scholars of Hinduism, in addition to to these attracted to the sociology and background of religion.
Shows Hinduism to be a hugely dynamic world-view which demanding situations western notions of modernity.
Considers a huge variety of issues together with girls, the caste process, the self, divinities and gurus.
- comprises up to date discussions of recent Hindu tradition and ideology.
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Additional info for Hinduism and Modernity
They were gods among men. Most of the vast literature in Sanskrit supports that claim, for it was written by the brahmans with that end in view. It was brahmans who stage-managed the great sacrifices for great men, and who developed the mysticism of the Upanishads into the philosophies of the Vedanta. The Vedic hymns were never an open book, and in due course their preservation became more important than the understanding of them. They increasingly became an esoteric text, giving power to the learned few.
29 Staff in hand, Gandhi walked across India: Man is so made by nature as to require him to restrict his movements as far as his hands and feet will take him. If we did not rush about from place to place by means of railways and such other maddening conveniences, much of the confusion that arises would be obviated . . God set a limit to a man’s locomotive ambition in the construction of his body. Man immediately proceeded to discover means of overriding the limit . . I am so constructed that I can only serve my immediate neighbours, but in my conceit, I pretend to have discovered that I must with my body serve every individual in the Universe.
The Vedic people’s name for themselves, ‘the noble’ (arya), was taken up by the Nazis as an indirect result of Vedic scholarship in Germany. Veneration of the Veda and ignorance of its content caused some credulous Hindus to attribute German scientific advances to German knowledge of the Veda. 38 Hinduism Ancient and Modern A nineteenth-century movement that continues to the present day, the Arya Samaj, founded by a brahman, Dayananda Sarasvati (1824–83), holds that the Rig Veda is the key to Hindu reform.