It believes that Religion is a question of personal choice and holds it sacred.
It does not believe in numbers game.
Hinduism is like a Doctor.
If and when you are sick you go to Doctor.
The Doctor prescribes you medicines.
He does not force you to take the medicine.
It is in your interest to take it.
The Doctor is not affected by your action.
Hinduism is like the Doctor.
It tells you the paths traversed by people who have realized God hood.
In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna explains about the various systems of Hindu Thought to Arjuna.
In the last chapter(18),just about to conclude the discourse , informs Arjuna,
‘I have told you what is utmost secret.
You examine them carefully and follow whatever suits and what your disposition tells You’
Hinduism is a way of Life.
Strictly speaking it is difficult to define who a Hindu is.
A Hindu is one who follows certain guidelines of Life and Beyond.
Not necessary to have been born a Hindu.
One need not believe in God even for Atheism is also accepted as a Faith in Hinduism.
However there are certain rules ,qualifications required to study the Vedas, the Sacred Books of the Hindus.
Hindus, though not advocating religious Conversion accepts people from the other Faiths .
There are no ceremonies involved.
Example of this is the worship of Lord Vishnu, by Helidorus, Ambassador to India to Gupta King’s court.
He erected a column in tribute to Lord Vishnu and it is called Heliodorous Column.
It is known that Heliodorus was sent to the court of King Bhagabhadra by Antiakalidas, the Greek king of Taxila. The kingdom of Taxila was part of the Bactrian region in northwest India, conquered by Alexander the Great in 325 B.C. By the time of Antialkidas, the area under Greek rule included what is today Afghanistan, Pakistan and Punjab.(2)
The column erected by Heliodorus first came to notice in 1877, during an archaeological survey by General Cunningham. The inscription, however, went unnoticed, because of the pillar’s thick coating of red lead paste. It had been the custom of pilgrims who had worshipped there to smear the column with vermillion paste. The column, Cunningham deduced from its shape, was from the period of the Imperial Guptas (3) (A.D. 300-550). Thirty-two years later, however, when the inscription was brought to light, it became clear that the monument was several centuries older. (4)..
A reproduction of the inscription, along with the transliteration and translation of the ancient Brahmi text, is given here as it appeared in the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society.
1) Devadevasu Va[sude]vasa Garudadhvajo ayam
2) Karito ia Heliodorena bhaga
3) Vatena Diyasa putrena Takhasilakena
4) Yonadatena agatena maharajasa
5) Amtalikitasa upa[m]ta samkasam-rano
6) Kasiput[r]asa [Bh]agabhadrasa tratarasa
7) Vasena [chatu]dasena rajena vadhamanasa
” This Garuda-column of Vasudeva (Visnu), the god of gods, was erected here by Heliodorus, a worshipper of Vishnu, the son of Dion, and an inhabitant of Taxila, who came as Greek ambassador from the Great King Antialkidas to King Kasiputra Bhagabhadra, the Savior, then reigning prosperously in the fourteenth year of his kingship.”
1) Trini amutapadani-[su] anuthitani
2) nayamti svaga damo chago apramado
“Three immortal precepts (footsteps)..when practiced lead to heaven-self restraint, charity, conscientiousness.”
From the inscriptions it is seems clear Heliodorus was influenced by Vedic principles that he could be considered to be a Vaisnava, a follower or worshipper of Visnu. Professor Kunja Govinda Goswami of Calcutta University concludes that Heliodorus ” was well acquainted with the texts dealing with the Bhagavat [Vaisnava] relgion.” (6)
Common sense would tell you to refer to the legends,literature of the Nation, check with contemporary event,s then cross check it with references , if any, if these literature is contemporary or slightly later.
Can you imagine a Nation,s History being started solely on the basis of a Character, who has not even met the man he is quoted to have met!
Megasthanes included, interpolated Greek Gods and Goddesses( read my post on how History invented Greek Gods).
These were later based upon along with the other names in Greek , presumably Indian, was linked to Chandra Gupta.
Megasthenes has nowhere mentioned the word Maurya
He makes absolutely no mention of a person called either Chanakya or Kautilya.
Indian historians have recorded two Chandra guptas, one of the Maurya dynasty and another of the Gupta dynasty. Both of them had a grandson called Ashoka. While the Mauryan Chandragupta’ s son was called Bimbasara (sometimes Bindusara), The Gupta Chandragupta had a son called Samudragupta. Interestingly Megasthenese has written that Sandrakuttos had a son called Samdrakyptos, which is phonetically nearer to Samudragupta and not Bindusara.
The king lists given by the Puranas say that 1500 years elapsed from the time of the Kurukshetra war to the beginning of the Nanda dynasty’s rule. If one assumes the Nandas’ period to be 5th century BCE, this would put the Bharatha war around 1900 BCE whereas the traditional view has always been 3100 BCE. This gives a difference of 1200 years which go unaccounted.
Megasthanese himself says 137 generations of kings have come and gone between Krishna and Sandrakuttos, whereas the puranas give around 83 generations only between Jarasandha’s son (Krishna’s contemporary) to the Nandas of the Magadha kingdom.. Assuming an average of 20 to 25 years per generation, the difference of 54 generations would account for the gap of the 1200 years till the time of Alexander.
The Chinese have always maintained that Buddhism came to China from India around 1100 -1200 BCE, whereas the western historians tend to put Buddha at 500 BCE
According to the Greek accounts, Xandrammes was deposed by Sandrokottas and Sandrocyptus was the son of Sandrokottas. In the case of Chandragupta Maurya, he had opposed Dhanananda of the Nanda dynasty and the name of his son was Bindusara. Both these names, Dhanananda and Bindusara, have no phonetic similarity with the names Xandrammes and Sandrocyptus of the Greek accounts.
Asoka’s empire was bigger than that of Chandragupta Maurya and he had sent missionaries to the so-called Yavana countries. But both of them are not mentioned. Colebrook has pointed out that the Greek writers did not say anything about the Buddhist Bhikkus though that was the flourishing religion of that time with the royal patronage of Asoka. Roychaudhari also wonders why the Greek accounts are silent on Buddhism.
The empire of Chandragupta was known as Magadha empire. It had a long history even at the time of Chandragupta Maurya. In Indian literature, this powerful empire is amply described by this name but it is absent in the Greek accounts. It is difficult to understand as to why Megasthanese did not use this name and instead used the word Prassi which has no equivalent or counterpart in Indian accounts.
To decide as to whether Pataliputra was the capital of the Mauryas, Puranas is the only source. Puranas inform us that all the eight dynasties that ruled Magadha after the Mahabharata War had Girivraja as their capital. Mauryas are listed as one of the eight dynasties. The name Pataliputra is not even hinted at, anywhere in the Puranas.
In the Greek accounts, Sandrokottas of Palimbothra is described as a contemporary of Alexander of Macedonia who invaded India during 327 BC to 323 BC This decides the approximate date of Chandragupta Maurya. Princep’s research decides the approximate date of Asoka, the grandson of Chandragupta Maurya as in 3rd century BC Both these dates were adjusted with the reign periods of the three successive Magadha kings, Chandragupta, Bindusara and Asoka of the Maurya dynasty given in the Puranas. Thus, the date c. 320 BC was fixed as the date of coronation of Chandragupta Maurya. It is on this date that every other date of Indian history has been constructed.
Max Mueller, in 1859 AD, finalized this identity of Sandrokottas with Chandragupta Maurya and declared c. 320 BC, the date of coronation of Chandragupta Maurya as the Sheet Anchor of Indian history. M. Troyer did not agree with this conclusion and noted this fact in the introduction to his translation of Rajatarangani of Kalhana. He even communicated his views to Prof. Max Mueller in a letter but did not receive a reply from him.
Historian V. A. Smith took the chronological identity asserted by the predecessors in this historical hierarchy as the basis for further calculation of the exact dates of the different dynasties that ruled over Magadha after and before the Mauryas. He took the aid of numismatics in addition to epigraphy. He could not however get over, as if by compunction, to follow the Puranas in the enumeration of the kings and their dynasties. But he reduced their reign periods. The total reduction done by these British scholars, from Jones to Smith, comes to 1300 years according to some Indian chronologists.
The information has been so scanty that it took the 33rd Acharaya of Sringeri Sharada Mutt to locate Kalady, the birth place of Shankaracharya!
Again if You look at the works of these western scholars on ancient Hindu texts, they are presented in such a way,for one who does not know Sanskrit, the presentation of these authors would seem to be very faithful and they would declare these writers as Great and even call Max Mueller as Raja Rishi!
They rearranged facts skillfully and you are left with the impression that Hinduism is full of contradictions and Indian Philosophy is a Fantasy!
The methods, primarily, for dating any work , is by Internal evidence and the external evidence.
Internal evidence is given a supplementary role to external evidence, that is that of references in the contemporary or succeeding period.
If you manipulate the external evidence then the whole History becomes misleading.
This is what the Western Scholars have done.
Some Indian writers too fell into this trap and followed these scholars.
Britishers in a quest to rule us have done a lot of conspiracies to damage our social, cultural, economic and religious systems. bhArata varSha, also known as Aryavart is the whole land beginning from foot of himAlaya-s to indian ocean. Britishers realized that our culture and spiritual base was so strong that it is not possible to convert people just by giving lectures on Bible. They concluded that the only way to push our way of life, and rule them was to demean their backbone – spirituality. To carry out their plan, they created Asiatic society and hired many professionals who were send to India with sole purpose of demeaning and denigrate our religious philosophy as inferior, mythology, primitive, supporting animal and human sacrifice, imaginative and full of superstitions.
Then began a period of collecting manuscripts and then interpret them in derogatory way. They also paidlofty amount to Max Muller, a german philologist, who is often credited of interpreting veda-s and bringing them to west and general public. MAx Muller was also one of them who purposefully interpreted our shastra-s in derogatory way. Other members of Asiatic Society were
Max Muller – Translation of rg veda in demeaning way and other articles tragetting our shastras to degrade them.
Sir William Jones
J. D. Peterson
H.H. Wilson – Translation of Vishnu PurANa in demeaning way
F.E. Partiger – Critical analysis of purANas and veda-s in demeaning way
Pandit Taranath (Indian writer hired to write on Hinduism in derogatory way)
(the list extends to 34 names).
The list also includes Britannica encyclopedia, who added Hindu words and explained their meanings in demeaning way.
They influenced Hindu writers like
Dr. R.G. Bhandarkar – highly influenced by Max Muller’s works and his research
Bal Gandhar Tilak – who dated vedas to 1500-200 BC
S. Radhakrishnan – whose works are used for post graduation in History and religion of India
All these writers never wrote anything on Christianity. Why? If one is interested in studying religions of others, they also study their first religion. No one keeps studying and publishing foreign religion throughout their life and not study and publish something about their own religion. This shows the wicked mentality of the then Britishers.
They forged our shastras which include bhaviSya purANa, by adding Jesus, changing date of Chandragupta Maurya calling him a contemporary of Alexander. To maintain consistency, they also pushed date of Lord Buddha and made him younger by 1500-2000 years. This also resulted in postponement of date of our beloved AcArya Adi Sankara, who as of 1999. should have been born 2500 years ago.
They also changed and interpolated dharma smriti-s, grihya sutra-s, purANa-s, kalpa sutra-s and our vedA-s also. They did this to endorse animal killing, sleeping with animals for carnal pleasure and other prohibited acts are actually approved by our shastra-s
They forged fake coins of Chandragupta Maurya to support their claims.
They destroyed our historic records and evidences, destroyed our faith, our culture and left of opportunity to project us, bhArtiya-s as poors chaps of inferior intelligence, and of superstitious and primitive nature.
Created fake Aryan Invasion theory to make us feel homeless. According to this theory, Germans (Aryans, sanskrit speaking people of high intelligence) migrated to India and they taught us everything.
Demean our holy deva-bhASa, sanskrit. Initially they could not find any concrete evidence of any language prior to sanskrit. So they created a fake proto-indo-european language, which is the root of all.
Compared our devatA-s with greek and other mythologies and equating them with nature spirits.
Nothing seems to be there that was before the advent of Islam.
Arabs are described even today as uncouth, use flowery language,indecisive and are generally unreliable.
As if to compensate this patronizingly it is stated that they are very hospitable. that’s all.
Please read any book that has a Middle East Character,including the much acclaimed ‘Oh!Jerusalem‘
People of Saudi Arabia seem to know nothing about their History sans the ones relating to Islam or during the Crusades!
They have taken to the description of their ancestors having been labelled a Nomads!
I have read some information on this subject and am sharing it here.
Seems to me that this tallies with the kingdoms and Land Mass describe din Hindu Purans.
Arabia is an abbreviation. The original word even today is Arbasthan. It originates in Arvasthan. As observed earlier Sanskrit “V” changes into “B”. Arva in Sanskrit means a horse. Arvasthan signifies a land of horses, and as we all know Arabia is famous for its horses.
In the 6th and 7th centuries A.D. a wave of effecting a complete break with the past spread over West Asia. All links with the past were broken, images smashed, scriptures destroyed, education discontinued and the entire West Asian region took a plunge in abysmal ignorance which lasted for centuries thereafter and perhaps persists to a certain extent even today because if in the whole world modern scientific and educational developments find stubborn and entrenched resistance anywhere it is in the West Asian countries. It is said that the late Saudi Arabia ruler could not permit a radio broadcasting station opened in his own capital because of opposition from his Maulavis. He then resorted to a stratagem. Once while he had his council of Maulavis in attendance he had a radio set switched on to a program of Koranic recitation broadcast from a small transmitting station set up earlier without much ado. The Maulavis were delighted, so goes the report, to hear the word of Allah coming to them as if from nowhere. The king told them that what objections could they have to a mechanism which broadcast the word of Allah. The Maulavis agreed and the small radio broadcasting project was at last ratified.
According to Encyclopedia Britannica and Séance Islamia the Arabs are ignorant of their own history of the pre-Muslim era. By a strange euphemism they call it a period of ignorance and darkness. Probably no other country in the world has deliberately written off a 2,500 year period of their own history by systematically stamping out and snapping all links with the past. They have wiped the memories of preMuslim era off their minds. So while they chose to remain ignorant of their past ironically enough it is they who dub the pre-Muslim era as a period of ignorance.
Fortunately we can still trace the history of that preIslamic Arabia. It is a well known adage that there is no such thing as foolproof destruction of all evidence. The pre-Islamic history of Arabia is the story of Indian Kshatriyas over that land, with the people following the Vedic way of life.
In our attempt to reconstruct the story of pre-Islamic Arabia we begin with the name of the country itself. As explained earlier the name is fully Sanskrit. Its central pilgrim centre, Mecca is also a Sanskrit name. Makha in Sanskrit signifies a sacrificial fire. Since Vedic fire worship was prevalent all over West Asia in pre-Islamic days Makha signifies the place which had an important shrine of fire worship.
Coinciding with the annual pilgrimage of huge bazaar used to spring up in Makha i.e. Mecca since times immemorial. The annual pilgrimage of Muslims to Mecca is not at all an innovation but a continuation of the ancient pilgrimage. This fact is mentioned in encyclopedias.
Evidence is now available that the whole of Arabia was part of the great Indian King Vikramaditya’s vast empire. The extent of Vikramaditya’s empire is one of the main reasons for his world wide fame. Incidentally this also explains many intriguing features about Arabia. It could be that Vikramaditya himself had this peninsula named Arvasthan if he was the first Indian monarch to capture it and bring it under his sway.
The second intriguing aspect is the existence of a Shivalinga or the Mahadeva emblem in the Kaaba shrine in Mecca. Before going into further details about the ancient Vedic rituals and names still clinging to Muslim worship at Mecca we shall see what evidence we have about Arabia having formed part of Vikramaditya’s dominions.
ANTHOLOGY OF ANCIENT ARABIC POETRY: SAYAR-UL-OKUL
In Istanbul in Turkey, there is a famous library called Makteb-e-Sultania which is reputed to have the largest collection of ancient West Asian literature. In the Arabic Section of that library is an anthology of ancient Arabic poetry. That anthology was compiled from an earlier work in A.D. 1742 under the orders of the Turkish ruler Sultan Salim.
The ‘pages’ of that volume are made of HAREER – a kind of silk used for writing on. Each page has a decorative gilded border. It may be recalled that gilding pages of sacred books is an ancient custom associated with old Sanskrit scriptures found in Java and other places. The anthology itself is known as SAYAR-UL-OKUL. It is divided into three parts, the first part contains biographic details and the poetic compositions of pre-Islamic Arabian poets. The second part embodies accounts and verses of poets of the period beginning just after Prophet Mohammad up to the end of Banee- Ummayya dynasty. The third part deals with later poets up to the end of Khalifa Harun-al-Rashid’s times. Incidentally “Banee” means “Vanee” and Ummayya as in Krishnayya are Sanskrit names.
Abu Amir Abdul Asamai, a distinguished Arabian bard who was the Poet Laureate of Harun-al-Rashid’s court has compiled and edited the anthology.
The first modern edition of Sayar-ul-Okul anthology was printed and published in Berlin in A.D. 1864. A subsequent edition was published in Beirut in A.D. 1932. This work is regarded as the most important and authoritative anthology of ancient Arabic poetry. It throws considerable light on the social life, customs, manners and entertainment forms in ancient Arabia. The book also contains an elaborate description of the ancient Mecca shrine, the town and the annual fair known as OKAJ which used to be held there every year. This should convince readers that the annual Haj of the Muslims to the Kaaba is only a continuation of the old fair and not a new practice.
But the OKAJ fair was far from a carnival. It provided a forum for the elite and learned to discuss the social, religious, political, literary and other aspects of the Vedic culture then pervading Arabia. Sayar-ul-Okul asserts that the conclusions reached at those discussions were widely respected throughout Arabia. Mecca, therefore, followed the Varanasi tradition of providing a seat for important discussions among the learned while the masses congregated there for spiritual bliss. The principal shrines at both Varanasi in India and at Mecca in Arvasthan were Shiva temples. Even to this day the central object of veneration at both Mecca and Varanasi continues to be the ancient Mahadeva emblems. It is the Shankara stone which Muslim pilgrims reverently touch and kiss in the Kaaba.
ENTRY OF NON-MUSLIMS FORBIDDEN
A few miles away from Mecca is a big signboard which forbids entry to any non-Muslim in the area. This is a reminder of the days when the Shrine was stormed and captured solely for the newly established faith of Islam. The object obviously was to prevent its recapture.
As the pilgrim proceeds towards Mecca he is asked to shave his head and beard and to don a special sacred attire. This consists of two seamless sheets of white cloth. One is to be worn round the waist and the other over the shoulders. Both these rites are remnants of the old Vedic practice of entering Hindu shrines, clean shaven and with holy seamless spotless white sheets.
The main shrine in Mecca which houses the Shiva emblem is known as the Kaaba. It is clothed in a black shroud. This custom could also originate from the days when it was thought necessary to discourage its recapture. According to encyclopedias Britannica and Islamia the Kaaba had 360 images. Traditional accounts mention that one of the deities among the 360 destroyed, when the shrine was stormed, was that ofSaturn, another was of the moon and yet another was one called Allah. In India the practice of Navagraha puja that is worship of the nine planets is still in vogue. Two of these nine are the Saturn and the moon. Besides, the moon is always associated with Lord Shankara. A Crescent is always painted across the forehead of the Shiva emblem. Since the presiding deity at the Kaaba shrine was Lord Shiva i.e. Shankara,the crescent was also painted on it. It is that crescent which is now adopted as a religious symbol of Islam. Another Hindu tradition is that wherever there is a Shiva shrine the sacred stream of Ganga that is the Ganges must also co-exist. True to that tradition a sacred fount exists near the Kasba. Its water is held sacred because it was regarded as but another Ganga since pre-Islamic times. Muslim pilgrims visiting the Kaaba shrine go around it seven times. In no other mosque does this perambulation prevail. Hindus invariably perambulate around their shrines. This is yet another proof that the Kaaba shrine is a pre-Islamic Shiva temple where the Hindu practice of perambulation is still meticulously observed.