Beliefs and Historical Context

Hinduism, the dominant faith in India, has a five thousand year history. Hinduism is a highly complicated ancient religion that is distinguished by facts that make it an extraordinarily diversified religion that has been separated along the lines of language, case, geography, and community (Lipner 5). It is said that the culture of India is an agglomeration of related religions and practices that have impacted each other over time due to Hinduism's lengthy history. Hinduism is characterized by the pattern of collection of religions that makes it not to be considered a religion instead it lacks a unified system that governs their practices and beliefs. With the complex nature of Hinduism it is possible to argue that it is a sect with distinct religious practices and specific rituals and theologies. Nonetheless, Hinduism can also be viewed as a means that people reach a common end. Although Hinduism is not characterized by practices and beliefs that are unique to it, there are some prototypical beliefs. For instance the practices and beliefs of the Radhasaomi devotee in the Punjab and high-caste devotee of the Hindu god Visnu (Lipner 4).

Hinduism as a religious system with social organization and a way of life does not have the dogmatic affirmations that would talk about the nature of God. In Hinduism, the religion is regarded as a way of life “sanatana dharma” (Lipner 3). Different from other religions, Hinduism beliefs are varied and peculiar. In this regard, one person’s sacred scripture may not necessarily be someone else’s. Within the faith and teachings of Hinduism, the doctrine of reincarnation may not be universal.

The social organization pf Hindu is the caste that then places the Hindu world theory into place where no man can be Hindu without being in caste. In this case, there are various facets in the social sphere including God is real, other gods should not be despised and that the world is worthless. As salvation is not the primary focus of Hinduism, Hinduism tends to accord a means of improving existence of man in the world.

The view of the world based on the Hinduism perspective is one that is founded on the doctrine of karma (the law of cause and effect) and samsara (the rebirth cycle) (Lipner 3). In this regard, Hinduism indicates that one’s actions and thoughts affects one’s life that touches on the current life and future lives. Indeed, through various arguments, the view on human condition reveals that people become what they are because of the choices they make and the manner that they live their lives.

The Concept of Hinduism: Karma

In Hinduism, karma means action thus in its initial context, the concept is meant to demonstrate that there is a reaction for every action in human life. According to karma, a good action (that is an action in agreement with the dharma), there will always be good reaction. In the contrary, bad actions (those against dharma) are faced with the opposite effect (Professor Gavin Flood n.p). Furthermore, Hinduism emphasizes that karma does not only operate in the present life as it extends even to the new life. Indeed, Hindus belief that one can create positive or negative consequences for their actions (Professor Gavin Flood n.p).

The concept of karma is a practical concept that can be witnessed everyone’s life. Indeed, the world is a place full of choices and every choice results in some actions that would eventually manifest in terms of consequences. Therefore, it is practical to view the concept in the context of humanity as every choice that one makes has its consequences. The society has given everyone a chance to make decisions but the freedom of such decisions have to be within the limits that do not infringe the rights of others. Indeed, any freedom that infringes the rights of another individual is punishable by the law. Therefore, similar to the concept of karma, man’s actions can be responsible for negative and positive consequences that they face. As such, the concept shapes the human nature to one that makes an individual understand that one’s choices will ultimately be reflected in the consequences.

Assessment of karma

The concept of karma is useful in understanding the place of man in the world because it shapes the thoughts and action of one. In so doing, people become cautious of their deeds with the society most likely to face a kind of order. The concept is critical because it is responsible for making man to act in ways that would most likely result in positive consequences (Professor Gavin Flood n.p).

The major concerns as it relate to the concept of karma is the manner that actions that are out of ones will are associated with consequences (sakama karma). Nonetheless, it is expressed that actions that are not intended do not befit the consequences (niskama karma). Therefore, the concept of karma has been faced with the pitfalls that surround the assumption that every action has a reaction due to the expressed concept of the niskama karma. Nonetheless, karma is a concept that carries the truth about how life gives one unlimited choices with the end of these choices being faced by reactions and consequences.

Works cited

Lipner, Julius. Hindus: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices. Routledge, 2012. Print.

Professor Gavin Flood. “BBC - Religions - Hinduism: Hindu Concepts.” N.p., 24 June 2009. Web. 28 Mar. 2017.

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