Hinduism is not a religion

hinduismIt’s a bold statement, but its deep…so I’ll explain.

Growing up in the Caribbean was never easy. I belonged to a culture & religion that I could barely explain to anyone & that’s because no one was able to explain it to me! That’s where my mental anguish started with my “religion”. At a very young age. I remember being teased for “worshiping many Gods”. Do you believe in Christmas? Do you believe in Jesus? You’re going to hell because you’re not supposed to pray to “idols”. Your Gods are not real. Your religion is satanic. Yes. Children are cruel with their words. These were the things I heard from age 5 all the way up to 15. I myself constantly struggled with it. In those days we didn’t have Google to look up anything, so I used my Encyclopedia. That didn’t help much either because no one was familiar with the culture & religion and because it was different & didn’t make sense to anyone, I was bullied to hell & back. It’s funny I say children are cruel with words. They get it from somewhere I presume. Just last month, a Jehovah’s Witness asked me what religion I belonged to & when I said “I am Hindu” she let me know that being part of a religion “worshiping many Gods” was going to ensure endless suffering & a bitter demise. She was quite dramatic about it & was angry that I was smiling & not saying anything to her. How could I possibly explain.

So why do I say Hinduism is not a religion. It’s something I understood of my religion a long time ago & still rings true to me today. My “religion” is about doing good. If you’re familiar with the law of karma, that is the essence of this religion. Do good in this birth to have a good life now & to reap rewards in another birth. (or for some people – do enough good that you don’t have to come back ever again…more on that in another post) I’ve always known this to the depths of my soul. That even with everything I was asked to do with regards to rituals, prayers & having superstitious beliefs, the real essence of Hinduism was “do good”. Of course, you can’t say that blatantly to elders. That would be rude. I am happy to be in my 30’s & that I am allowed to have my own stance on what Hinduism is & what it means to me, without anyone having to condemn me for that.

Hinduism is a religion of many prophets, many Holy books. We believe in One Supreme God but that He has appeared throughout history in many different “Avatars” (forms). You can believe in one God or many & be Hindu. You can chose to not believe in any & still be Hindu. I don’t follow rituals or go to temple but I am still Hindu. Being Hindu allows me to think independently & objectively without conditioning. Hinduism is a set of beliefs & practices about how to live this life we are given. I am free to believe in another other religion & actually many Hindus believe in all other religions. We respect other religions & don’t condemn anyone for their beliefs. I believe in Jesus. That He was sent here to save our souls & that he is the son of God. You see, Hinduism is philosophical, peaceful & just wants us to do, speak & be good. It does not condition minds with any fixed faith system. It is not governed by superstitions & rituals. That is a condition that people applied to religion in order to have some control over their society. Hinduism is an individual’s religion & based on “Dharma”, the code of life which is being truthful to oneself. It’s your personal approach to your relationship with a Supreme Being & it is your way of life.  You don’t need to convert to it or be initiated. One of our holy scriptures (Vedas) read “God is with me, within me.” Hinduism is natural yet logical. It is satisfying, spiritual, personal & a scientific way of life.

Hinduism is not something you can seek. It is within you.

Thanks for reading! x

 

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3 thoughts on “Hinduism is not a religion

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  1. Wow. You’ve written a lot and cleared the air for me and many others who may have been wondering. I studied “religion” in high school and college mostly because I wanted to know more. More about my faith and the religion I followed- Catholic. I grew up in a predominantly catholic based community. I was baptized, communed and confirmed. I remember the first and only time I confessed my sins to a priest I asked my grandmother before, “is it necessary”? I never really understood why I couldn’t just speak to God myself. Each time I asked an elder I would get the same response; the priest is an intercessor. I was hungry for more and God knew it. Was I searching to find myself?. My spiritual journey was growing and I sought out to try different religions. My family was not happy with the idea; even my friends would tease me. I thought I was doing something wrong. So much was leant about the way other people worship and their customs. I don’t attend a church now but I consider myself a spiritual being. I too believe in Jesus and his word. I believe that God and our guardian angels are around and with us everywhere. I was taught to believe that Hinduism is just “worshiping idols” that was what I learnt. On the other hand Catholics pray to the Virgin Mary and within most churches her statue is viable. How can we say one thing and yet we’re practicing it? Now, I pray to God who is omnipresent, read my daily devotions and journal a lot of my thoughts. I never liked discussing “religion” because it’s such a tricky topic and it most times ends into an argument. Thanks for shedding some light Div! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nisha thank you so much for sharing your story. I would love to hear more especially along the lines of why you felt it was more important to speak to God himself. Our elders themselves don’t understand somethings at times. Your heart was pure and you were absolutely right. Thanks for reading and commenting as always and I’m happy I was able to share what the essence of Hinduism is x

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