Ancient India
• Out of 2
groups of
people –
• one diverse
religion
Indus/Dravidian People Indo-Aryans
• Written language
• Nomadic tribes
• Industry & trade
• Herded cattle,
sheep goats
• Agriculture
• Warriors
• Planned Cities
• Male dominated
• Citadel
• No cities
• Underground
sewers
• No written lang.–
only oral tradit.
• Oven baked bricks
The Indo-Aryans maybe conquered and
enslaved the Indus Valley People c.1500 BCE
From the clash of these two
cultures came:
• Structure of Society – the
Varna or castes
• The religion Hinduism
• Religious writings
Caste System
Varna (castes)
divided into
3000 subcastes,
jati, based on
occupation
priests
Brahmin
Kshatriya
Vaisya
Shudra
Nobles, warriors,
royalty
Merchants &
skilled workers
Servants,
peasants,
slaves, laborers
Untouchables: Outcaste, pariah =
outside caste system
Hinduism
One religion and many…
Hindu
Gods
Brahman
One Divine
Essence
Unity
+ millions of
other gods
+ divine essence,
“atman” in all things
Gods (diversity)
Many manifestations of Brahman
Brahma
The
Creator
Shiva
The
Destroyer
Vishnu
The Preserver
Had many earthly
incarnations:
Rama, Krishna
Hindu Beliefs
• Worshiping many gods
• Reincarnation – cycle of rebirth
(samsara, transmigration)
• Atman – spirit that goes from birth to
rebirth (sort of like “soul”)
• Karma – every action is rewarded or
punished in this life or a next life
• Dharma: one’s moral duty in life;
may differ according to varna
• Maya: the illusion of the material
world (diversity)
• reality is the divine essence
(Brahman=unity)
• Moksha: release from pain &
suffering of rebirth
• Ahimsa: reverence for all life
forms
• Yoga: mental and physical
discipline to free mind/spirit from
bodily control
• Asceticism – extreme self-denial
• Nirvana – ultimate goal; to escape
cycle of rebirth
• Guru: teacher
• Yogi: yoga guru
Religious Writings
•Vedas: “Books
of Knowledge”
• -oral tradition:
songs, prayers,
stories of the
Indo-Aryans
•- eventually written in Sanskrit
Religious Writings
• Upanishads:
mystical/
philosophical
discussions
• -reality and
illusion
• -unity and
diversity
"What makes my
mind think, my eyes
see, my tongue
speak, my body
live?"
What happens when
this body dies?“
mysticism
Religious Writings – The Epics
• Epic: long heroic tale
• Also began as oral
tradition; teaching
tools
• Mahabarata: great
war
• -Bhagavad-Gita “song
of God”
• -Krishna’s instruction
on love and morality
Religious Writings - Epics
• Ramayana – Story of Rama and
wife Sita
• allegorical sense: represents
Indo-Aryans establishing hold
over north India & moving
influence south
• religious/mythical point of view:
Rama represents the noble
man, following dharma and
living rightly;
• Sita is the honorable wife
A Hindu’s goal
• Immediate goal: A good Hindu should
follow the dharma of his caste. If he
does this , karma will cause the
transmigration of his atman into a
higher caste/varna in his next life….
• Ultimate goal….The Atman will
recognize maya, escape samsara,
achieve Nirvana and be one with
Brahman.
“New” ideas threaten the
th
status quo - 5 c. BCE
• Jainism - Mahavira
• Buddhism – Siddartha Gautama
Jainism
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
“Jina” – the conqueror
Mahavira – the “last conqueror”
Holiness of the life force
Extreme ahimsa
Karma & detachment
Monogamy & honesty
Became city dwellers; trade
vegetarian
• ….
Buddhism
“The Middle
Way”
Buddha…“The Enlightened One”
Siddhartha Gautama …the traditional story
• 6th c. BC, Born a prince, isolated
• into world, saw illness, death & old age
• Left family (Great Renunciation) in
search of “truth”
• austere, ascetic life for years, it didn’t
help
• 35th birthday…weeks of meditation
became the “Enlightened One”
Four Noble Truths
1. All life is suffering &
sorrow…
2. suffering is caused by
greedy desire
3. To eliminate suffering
must eliminate desire
4. To eliminate desire
follow the Eight-Fold
Path or the Middle
Way to reach Nirvana
Eightfold Path... “The Middle Way”
• Know the truth
wisdom
• Resist evil
• Say nothing to hurt
others
morality
• Respect life
• Work for the good of
others
• Free mind of evil
meditation
• Control thoughts
• Practice meditation
The Eightfold Path Expanded
Compare/Contrast with Hinduism
Different –
Buddhists:
reincarnation • Do not believe in
sort of…
worshipping gods
Nirvana
• Reject caste/ varna
Karma
system
Ahimsa –
• Believe one can
escape cycle of
reverence for all
rebirth by following
living things
8-fold Path – a
Dharma ….
universal dharma
Same
•
•
•
•
•
Spread of Buddhism
• Asoka – 3rd c. BC ruler who sent
out Buddhist missionaries
• Rise of Buddhism leads to a
flowering of architecture and the
arts
• Stupas – large stone mounds built
over the bones of holy people
• Paintings/statues of Buddha
• Zen temples, surrounded by
beautiful gardens
Two Branches of Buddhism
Theravada (“Way of
the Elders”)
• View Buddha as a
teacher
• South and SE Asia
• Tripitika - scriptures
Mahayana
• View Buddha as a
savior/divine
being
• China, Korea,
Japan
• Bodhisattvas –
“saints”
More variations within Mahayana
Buddhism…
• In Nepal, Buddhists believe Buddha
is the incarnation of Hindu God
Vishnu
• Tantric Buddhism in Tibet –
Buddhism and nature worship
• Zen Buddhism (Japan) – focuses on
meditation & harmony & simplicity –
So…who is this???
• This is NOT the Buddha
• This is Pu-tai or Hotei
• A fertility symbol who was
said to bring gifts to small
children (think Santa
Claus)
• As Hotei – one of the
7 Japanese Shinto Gods
cf. Mahavira,
Siddhartha
Gautama &
Jesus of Nazareth
Classical India
1.
2.
•
•
Local Princes (rajahs)
Mauryan Empire – 322 BC
Founder: Chandragupta
Asoka – after fierce wars of
conquest, became “enlightened”
– Renounced war
– Followed Buddhist teachings
– Encouraged tolerance
– Spread Buddhism throughout India and
other parts of Asia by missionaries
Asoka’s Rock Edicts
• Laws carved on
rocks and pillars
throughout
empire
• Laws stressed
concern for other
human beings
Gov’t cont’d: Gupta Empire
• Gupta Empire
• 320AD-535AD
• India’s “Golden Age” –
arts & sciences
flourished
• Began to write down
rules for everything:
grammar,
drama, politics
Classical Society
• Caste System
• Women respected but had little
power or independence
• Polygamy many wives
• Suttee/sati
wives’ ritual suicide
Ancient
Art/Architecture
• Golden Age during Gupta Empire
–(Drama, poetry, math and sciences
flourished)
• Stupas – mound shaped shrines to
Buddha/bodhisattvas
• Temples with brightly painted sculptures
Descargar

Hinduism