I often post here regarding the goings on of my Facebook friends…This post will be no different. One of my pals on the social networking site posted a link that I’m about to share with you. After poking around only a little, it seems like a pretty good resource – although to be fair, I’m planning to dig a little deeper and research some of the resources that contribute to the site.
It’s called Hindupedia and can be accessed here. I’ve shared below a page I took from there citing the general, broadest scope of Hindu beliefs.
Sanatana Dharma by being a dharma is by definition not dogmatic in its beliefs or faith. Below is a list of key beliefs that are common across most followers of this dharmic tradition.
Reverence for Revealed Scriptures The Vedas are of divine origin. These primordial hymns are the bedrock of Sanatana Dharma, the eternal religion.
All-Pervasive Divinity There is one, all-pervasive Supreme Being, who is both immanent and transcendent, both Creator and Unmanifest Reality
Three Worlds and Cycles of Creation There are three worlds of existence — physical, astral, and causal — and the universe undergoes endless cycles of creation, preservation, and dissolution.
Laws of Karma and Dharma Karma, the law of cause and effect by which each individual creates his own destiny by his thoughts, words, and deeds — and by obeying the laws of dharma, righteous living.
Reincarnation and Liberation The soul reincarnates, evolving through many births until all its karma has been resolved and moksha (liberation from the cycle of rebirth) has been achieved. Not a single soul will be eternally deprived of this destiny.
Temples and the Inner Worlds Divine beings exist in unseen worlds. Temple worship, rituals, sacraments as well as personal devotion create a communion with these devas, divine beings.
A Path Guided by a Guru A spiritually awakened master, or guru, is essential to know the Transcendent Absolute, aided by personal discipline, good conduct, purification, pilgrimage, self-inquiry, meditation, and surrender to the guru and the divine scriptures.
Compassion and Noninjury All life is sacred, to be loved and revered; and therefore one is expected to practice ahimsa, or “non-injury.”
Diversity of Paths There are many paths that lead to salvation. Although the goal is one, the sages call it by different names and means.
It’s been said that there are as many religions within Hinduism as there are outside of it. Within that context, there are certain to be some (many?) Hindus who adhere to all these core concepts, and some (many?) who hardly grasp any of them. Either way, “vasudaiva kutumbakhum,” the whole world is one family.
Om Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha