Comparing Hinduism and Islam
Throughout the world the one thing that binds people together is religion. Whether it is Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, or any of the other practice of faith that people adhere to, one thing remains clear; the vast majority of the human species has always looked to a higher power for guidance and enlightenment, love, acceptance and, at times, discipline. Even early humans who did not quite grasp the whole concept still believed that a power greater than themselves must be responsible for all that they saw around them.
Within these margins we will look at two bodies of faith that are as different as night and day on the surface, but when really studied, and an open mind for understanding is present, the similarities float to the top. The two faiths that will be examined are Hinduism and Islam. In order to make this comparison as precisely as possible and so that there are recognizable correlation's between the two, the six points of dimensional reference that will be used are as follows: 1) Doctrinal-creeds, theologies, etc.; 2) Ethical-set of moral beliefs; 3) Experiential-divine experiences of the faithful; 4) Mythological-beliefs that are most usually relayed in the form of stories; 5) Rituals-behaviors done in the form of worship and imitation; 6) Institutional-any form in which religion is organized.
The Hindu doctrine is actually made up of two different texts. The first text is known as the Vedas, which means "knowledge" or "wisdom". This is a collection of four writings composed between 1500 and 500 BC in which the basis of the Hindu belief system as well as their ideas on religion is expressed. The Vedas also describe numerous deities who are the personifications of natural occurrences such as rain, wind, fire, etc. It was the custom for prayers and sacrifices to be offered to these gods as a means by which to obtain blessings.
The second text, which is actually the latter sections of the Vedas, is known as the Upanishads. The Upanishads is considered to be inspired writings by the Hindu faithful and also plays a big part in the development of the Hindu concept of the divine. The Upanishads is where the Hindu religion strays from multiple gods and instead focuses on the Brahman. The Brahman is an ultimate reality beyond our comprehension and is impersonal in nature. The...