Monday, April 18, 2016

729 Distinction between Sanatana Dharma and Hinduism

A learned friend of mine has sent me an email, asking me to delineate between the two terms "SanAtan dharma" and "Hinduism". Both the terms are "undiscuss-able or undiscuss-ible sensitive terms" discussing which can lead to dissensions and unrest. The atmosphere in this country is such that we have to praise everything. Or else, there will be somebody or other who will say that his centiments and emotions are hurt.

If I have to discuss, I must write both sides of the things, with supporting examples. Writing both sides means, inviting wrath of people. Anyway, I shall examine taking up this issue when situation in the country improves. Besides, it is not my top priority. We have our main problems of poverty, inequalities of income and wealth,monopolisation of wealth, etc. etc.

’హిందూ‘ అనే పదం కూడా భారతీయ భాషాపదం కాదని మీకు తెలుసు. నా ప్రశ్న ఏమిటంటే సనాతన ధర్మమూ, హిందూ అనేవి వేరు వేరా? లేకా ఒకటేనా? నేనయితే ఒకటి అని అనుకోవడంలేదు. హిందూ అనే పేరుతో భారతీయ సనాతన ధర్మాన్ని సంబోధించడం సమంజసమేనా? అసలు భారతీయ సనాతనధర్మం అంటే ఏమిటో మీకు తెలిసినది తెలుపగలరు.

Approx. English: You know that the word 'Hindu' is not a word of an Indian language. My question is this: Are the 'Sanatan dharma' and 'Hindu' different-separate terms? I, for myself, am not thinking that they are same. Is it proper, to call the "Sanatana dharma" using the name "Hindu" ? You inform me, whatever you know , on what does the term "Sanatana dharma" means.

For those who wish to read an exhaustive book (I have downloaded it. It has 448 pages. I have not read it. I shall try to read it), here are the links:

page on which the download link is situated i.e.

Right click this link, and give file name for saving the pdf.

Humble personal view of ybrao-a-donkey वैबीराव एक गधे के विनम्र राय వైబీరావ్ ఒక గాడిద గాడి వినమ్ర అభిప్రాయం

Hindu is a term which originally had a geographical meaning, referring to persons who live on the East side of River Indus. This word we cannot find in any Scriptures of India. I have written several times that Hinduism is not a religion, in the meaning of the Western, and the South East Asian Religions. It is a composite culture of several sub cultures, such as Siva, Vaishnava, Ganapatya, SAktEya, ShaNmukha, Brahma, Pasupata, vAmachara, dakshinAchAra etc. etc. (several hundreds). Hinduism is like an Anona Squimoza compound fruit or a grape bunch. It also serves as an example of coexistence for survival pluralist system.

The prefix adjective-attribute 'sanAtana' means 'ancient, eternal'. Dharma means duty. But the meaning of the word Dharma has been extended to mean a religion. Today's monks and priests may say that the Brahmanic System of worship which is found everywhere is their Sanatan Dharma. Then, it becomes a restricted definition. Reason: What was the sanAtana dharma, before the arrival of Aryans into India? It must have been the real Sanatana dharma. Then the Aryans tried to replace it with their own method of FIRE WORSHIP AND SACRIFICES OF ANIMALS TO PLEASE GODS, SENDING THE FOOD FOR GODS THROUGH THE FIRE GOD. But, the Ancient Indians didn't apparently indulge in such animal sacrifices. Finding that they could not annihilate the ancient Indian Sanatana dharma, the Aryans heavily borrowed from the Ancient Indian Sanatana dharma. They made some compromises with the Ancient Sanatan dharma, to make the Four caste system acceptable to the Natives. And finally, they could impose the Four caste system on Indians, adding outcastes as an appendage. This is an endless saga which we cannot discuss in a vitiated climate. Till the intellectual levels of the people rise, facts have to wait.

To continue. सशेष. ఇంకా ఉంది.

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ఘోరమైన విమర్శలకు కూడ స్వాగతం, జవాబులు ఇవ్వబడతాయి. Harsh Criticism is also welcome.