In Hinduism, Brahman (Sanskrit: ब्रह्मन्) connotes the highest universal principle, the ultimate reality in the universe. In major schools of Hindu philosophy, it is the immaterial, efficient, formal and final cause of all that exists. It is the pervasive, infinite, eternal truth, consciousness and bliss which does not change, yet is the cause of all changes. Brahman as a metaphysical concept refers to the single binding unity behind diversity in all that exists in the universe.
Brahman is a Vedic Sanskrit word, and it is conceptualized in Hinduism, states Paul Deussen, as the "creative principle which lies realized in the whole world". Brahman is a key concept found in the Vedas, and it is extensively discussed in the early Upanishads. The Vedas conceptualize Brahman as the Cosmic Principle. In the Upanishads, it has been variously described as Sat-cit-ānanda (truth-consciousness-bliss) and as the unchanging, permanent, highest reality. (Full article...)
Front view of the Murugan Temple
The Murugan Temple at Saluvankuppam, Tamil Nadu, India, is a shrine dedicated to Tamil Hindu deityMurugan. Archaeologists believe that the shrine, unearthed in 2005, consists of two layers: a brick temple constructed during the Sangam period (the 3rd century BCE to the 3rd century CE) and a granite Pallava temple dating from the 8th century CE and constructed on top of the brick shrine making it the oldest temple in india. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) team which conducted the excavation believe that brick temple could be the oldest of its kind to be discovered in Tamil Nadu.
The temple was discovered by a team of archaeologists from the ASI based on clues found in a rock inscription left exposed by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Initially, excavations revealed an 8th-century Pallava-era shrine. Further excavations revealed that the 8th-century shrine had been built on the brick foundation of an earlier shrine. The brick shrine has been dated to the Sangam period. (Full article...)
Karma (/ˈkɑːrmə/, from Sanskrit: कर्म, IPA:[ˈkɐɾmɐ]ⓘ; Pali: kamma) is a concept of action, work, or deed, and its effect or consequences. In Indian religions, the term more specifically refers to a principle of cause and effect, often descriptively called the principle of karma, wherein individual's intent and actions (cause) influence their future (effect): Good intent and good deeds contribute to good karma and happier rebirths, while bad intent and bad deeds contribute to bad karma and bad rebirths. As per some scripture, there is no link of rebirths with karma. Karma is often misunderstood as fate, destiny, or predetermination.
The concept of karma is closely associated with the idea of rebirth in many schools of Indian religions (particularly in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism), as well as Taoism. In these schools, karma in the present affects one's future in the current life, as well as the nature and quality of future lives—one's saṃsāra. This concept has also been adopted in Western popular culture, in which the events that happen after a person's actions may be considered natural consequences of those actions. (Full article...)
Mahadevi or Durga
The Devi Upanishad (Sanskrit:देवी उपनिषत्), is one of the minor Upanishads of Hinduism and a text composed in Sanskrit. It is one of the 19 Upanishads attached to the Atharvaveda, and is classified as one of the eight Shakta Upanishads. It is, as an Upanishad, a part of the corpus of Vedanta literature collection that present the philosophical concepts of Hinduism.
The Devi Mahatmya or Devi Mahatmyam (Sanskrit: देवीमाहात्म्यम्, romanized: devīmāhātmyam, lit. 'Glory of the Goddess') is a Hindu philosophical text describing the Goddess, known as Mahadevi or Adishakti, as the supreme power and creator of the universe. It is part of the Markandeya Purana.Devi Mahatmyam is also known as the Durgā Saptashatī (दुर्गासप्तशती) or Śata Chandī (शत् चण्डी). The text contains 700 verses arranged into 13 chapters. It is one of the most important texts in Shaktism, along with Devi-Bhagavata Purana and Devi Upanishad. The text is one of the earliest extant complete manuscripts from the Hindu traditions which describes reverence and worship of the feminine aspect of God.
The Devi Mahatmyam describes a storied battle between good and evil, where the Devi manifesting as goddess Durga leads the forces of good against the demon Mahishasura—the goddess is very angry and ruthless, and the forces of good win. The verses of this story also outline a philosophical foundation wherein the ultimate reality (Brahman in Hinduism) can also be female. (Full article...)
Vedic Mathematics is a book written by the Indian monk Bharati Krishna Tirtha, and first published in 1965. It contains a list of mathematical techniques, which were falsely claimed to have been retrieved from the Vedas and to contain advanced mathematical knowledge.
Krishna Tirtha failed to produce the sources, and scholars unanimously note it to be a mere compendium of tricks for increasing the speed of elementary mathematical calculations sharing no overlap with historical mathematical developments during the Vedic period. However, there has been a proliferation of publications in this area and multiple attempts to integrate the subject into mainstream education by right-wingHindu nationalist governments. (Full article...)
Hindu mythology has many examples of deities changing gender, manifesting as different genders at different times, or combining to form androgynous or hermaphroditic beings. Gods change sex or manifest as an avatar of the opposite sex in order to facilitate sexual congress. Non-divine beings also undergo sex-changes through the actions of the gods, as the result of curses or blessings, or as the natural outcome of reincarnation. (Full article...)
The Puri temple is famous for its annual Ratha Yatra, or chariot festival, in which the three principal deities are pulled on huge and elaborately decorated temple cars, Worship is performed by the Bhil Sawar tribal priests as well as priests of other communities in the Jagannath temple. Unlike the stone and metal icons found in most Hindu temples, the image of Jagannath is made of wood and is ceremoniously replaced every twelve or 19 years by an exact replica. It is one of the Char Dham pilgrimage sites.The puri temple is also famous because many legends believe that Krishna's heart was placed there and the material that it is made from damages the heart so they have to change it every twelve years. (Full article...)
Purana (/pʊˈrɑːnə/; Sanskrit: पुराण, purāṇa; literally meaning "ancient, old") is a vast genre of Hindu literature about a wide range of topics, particularly about legends and other traditional lore. The Puranas are known for the intricate layers of symbolism depicted within their stories. Composed originally in Sanskrit and in other Indian languages, several of these texts are named after major Hindu gods such as Vishnu, Shiva, Brahma, and Adi Shakti. The Puranic genre of literature is found in both Hinduism and Jainism.
The Puranic literature is encyclopedic, and it includes diverse topics such as cosmogony, cosmology, genealogies of gods, goddesses, kings, heroes, sages, and demigods, folk tales, pilgrimages, temples, medicine, astronomy, grammar, mineralogy, humor, love stories, as well as theology and philosophy. The content is highly inconsistent across the Puranas, and each Purana has survived in numerous manuscripts which are themselves inconsistent. The Hindu Maha Puranas are traditionally attributed to "Vyasa", but many scholars considered them likely the work of many authors over the centuries; in contrast, most Jaina Puranas can be dated and their authors assigned. (Full article...)
The following are images from various Hinduism-related articles on Wikipedia.
Image 1Upanayana samskara ceremony in progress. Typically, this ritual was for eight-year-olds in ancient India, but in the 1st millennium CE it became open to all ages. (from Samskara (rite of passage))
Image 2Samskaras are, in one context, the diverse rites of passage of a human being from conception to cremation, signifying milestones in an individual's journey of life in Hinduism. Above is annaprashana samskara celebrating a baby's first taste of solid food. (from Samskara (rite of passage))
Image 3Ishvara is, along with Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma, one of the 17 deities commonly found in Indonesian Surya Majapahit Hindu arts and records. However, Ishvara represents different concept in various Hindu philosophies. (from Hindu deities)
Image 8Annaprashanam is the rite of passage where the baby is fed solid food for the first time. The ritual has regional names, such as Choroonu in Kerala. (from Samskara (rite of passage))
Image 9A Tamil Hindu girl (center) in 1870 wearing a half-saree, flowers and jewelry from her Ritu Kala samskara rite of passage (from Samskara (rite of passage))
Image 10Shiva (left), Vishnu (middle), and Brahma (right) (from Hindu deities)
Image 11Six Hinduism deities. Surya, Parvati, Hanuman, Lakshmi, Vishnu, and Indra. All of these statues came from India, except Vishnu (from the Thai-Cambodian border). Various eras. National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh (from Hindu deities)
Image 13The ten avatars of Vishnu, (Clockwise, from top left) Matsya, Kurma, Varaha, Vamana, Krishna, Kalki, Buddha, Parshurama, Rama and Narasimha, (in centre) Radha and Krishna. Painting currently in Victoria and Albert Museum. (from Hindu deities)
Image 14A new born's Namakarana ceremony. The grandmother is whispering the name into the baby's ear, while friends and family watch. (from Samskara (rite of passage))
Image 15Vaishnavism focuses on an avatar of Vishnu, such as Krishna above (from Hindu denominations)
Image 16Indra is a Vedic era deity, found in south and southeast Asia. Above Indra is part of the seal of a Thailand state. (from Hindu deities)
After earning a degree in physics at Allahabad University in 1942, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi became an assistant and disciple of SwamiBrahmananda Saraswati (also known as Guru Dev), the Shankaracharya (spiritual leader) of the Jyotir Math in the Indian Himalayas. The Maharishi credits Brahmananda Saraswati with inspiring his teachings. In 1955, the Maharishi began to introduce his Transcendental Deep Meditation (later renamed Transcendental Meditation) to India and the world. His first global tour began in 1958. His devotees referred to him as His Holiness, and because he laughed more frequently in early TV interviews, he was sometimes referred to as the "giggling guru." (Full article...)
Born into an aristocratic Bengali Kayastha family in Calcutta, Vivekananda was inclined from a young age towards religion and spirituality. He later found his guru Ramakrishna and became a monk. After the death of Ramakrishna, Vivekananda extensively toured the Indian subcontinent acquiring first-hand knowledge of the living conditions of Indian people in then British India. Moved by their plight, he resolved to help his countrymen and found a way to travel to the United States, where he became a popular figure after the 1893 Parliament of Religions in Chicago at which he delivered his famous speech beginning with the words: Sisters and brothers of America... while introducing Hinduism to Americans. He was so impactful at the Parliament that an American newspaper described him as "an orator by divine right and undoubtedly the greatest figure at the Parliament". (Full article...)
Meera, better known as Mirabai, and venerated as Sant Meerabai, was a 16th-century Hindumystic poet and devotee of Krishna. She is a celebrated Bhakti saint, particularly in the North Indian Hindu tradition.
Rambhadracharya is the founder and head of Tulsi Peeth, a religious and social service institution in Chitrakoot named after Saint Tulsidas. He is the founder and lifelong chancellor of the Jagadguru Rambhadracharya Handicapped University in Chitrakoot, which offers graduate and postgraduate courses exclusively to four types of disabled students. Rambhadracharya has been blind since the age of two months, had no formal education until the age of seventeen years, and has never used Braille or any other aid to learn or compose. (Full article...)
Gargi, the daughter of sage Vachaknu in the lineage of sage Garga (c. 800-500 BCE) was named after her father as Gargi Vachaknavi. From a young age she evinced keen interest in Vedic scriptures and became very proficient in fields of philosophy. She became highly knowledgeable in the Vedas and Upanishads in the Vedic times and held intellectual debates with other philosophers. (Full article...)