Hinduism Essay

845 words - 3 pages

Hinduism is the oldest and most complex of all religions, there is no specific deity, and maintains five central concepts supported by all Hindus.there is no specific fouder or theology and it originated in the religious practices of Aryan tribes who moved to India from central Asia more than three thousand years ago. Aryan society developed the caste system, which ranked society according to occupational class. The social structure of Hinduism is formed by their caste system, that was formed based on the Aryan caste system, in which there is a hierarchy the highest being the Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas, and the lowest being the Harijahns.Followers of the Hindu faith are free to choose the god in which they would like to follow, which adds to the complexity of this religion. Hindu's also believe in reincarnation, which is the rebirth of the spirit after death into a new body (Wenner, 2001)The caste system of the Hindu faith sets up the social structure for the people that practice the religion. The Brahmins are the highest class which is a priestly class; the people in this class were the religious leaders or priests. The next in the social hierarchy is the Kshatriyas which is the ruling or military class (king warrior-class) was the rulers, governors, wealthy, and military of the Hindu society. Third in the hierarchy of the Hindu social structure is the Vaishyas which are the merchants, farmers, crafts people, and sutras laborers. The fourth and the lowest class is the Harijahns which are the descendants of the Harapoon aboriginal people, extremely poor, and the discriminated against. Although the caste system was outlawed in 1948, it is still important to the Hindu people of India and is still recognized as the proper way to stratify society. The people of the Hindu faith believe that the class in which one is born or reborn in is based on the actions of that person in a previous life, or karma as it is called by the Hindu (Wenner, 2001).One of the staples of the Hindu faith is reincarnation; the belief that after one dies they are reborn into a new body. Reincarnation is known as samsara to the Hindu. The Hindu belive that karma affects everyone and their actions in their present life determines which class they will be reborn in and how they will die in their next life. Samsara is an ongoing cycle that continues until that person reaches moksha, the peaceful escape from samsara. The way for a person to reach moksha is to follow the three Hindu paths to...

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