So, when I left, my discussions went with me xD But now that I am back, I'm breathing life into a new one.
I'm a Hindu, formally a Shaiva, but now dabbling more into Shaktism. I still love Shiva, though.
SO ask away. I'll try to answer as best I can. I can't promise that I have all the answers, but again, I can try :D
Kitsch is not branding. It's Kitsch.
It's because Hinduism has no real founder and thus has no real 'canon'. I would say the term 'Hinduism' is much like the term 'Paganism' except a tad more regional specific.
Islam is also decentralized, its 'cannon' always up for debate and what ends up happening; like Hinduism, people think it's whatever they want it to be. Only it's not. Which is why there are calls for people to stop calling it Hinduism or Islam when it's no longer that.
Islam has more organization, than most of Hinduism. It also has the canon of the Koran and bible and a founder. It splits when they were arguing over who gets to take over since Mohammed never really named an heir.
I'm also involved with indigenous Mesoamerican ways and "Hinduism". I find no conflict between them, of course.
My influences have been not only Mexica but also Purépecha and Mayan, among others.
It's all compatible.
I'm not doing the two. I gave up Mesoamerica.
Why is that? You seemed to be years long invested in it.
Which is unfortunate. I have posted and posted about it when asked. It's been years since I even worshiped an Aztec god.
This is a really good post by a Hindu. (About what is so special about it.)
What is special about being a Hindu :
1) Believe in God ! – Aastik – Accepted
2) Don’t believe in God ! – You’re accepted as Nastik
3) You want to worship idols – please go ahead. You are a murti pujak.
4) You dont want to worship idols – no problem. You can focus on Nirguna Brahman.
5) You want to criticise something in our religion. Come forward. We are logical. Nyaya, Tarka etc. are core Hindu schools.
6) You want to accept beliefs as it is. Most welcome. Please go ahead with it.
7) You want to start your journey by reading Bhagvad Gita – Sure !
8) You want to start your journey by reading Upanishads – Go ahead
9) You want to start your journey by reading Purana – Be my guest.
10) You just don’t like reading Puranas or other books. No problem my dear. Go by Bhakti tradition . ( bhakti- devotion)
11) You don’t like idea of Bhakti ! No problem. Do your Karma. Be a karmayogi.
12) You want to enjoy life. Very good. No problem at all. This is Charvaka Philosophy.
13) You want to abstain from all the enjoyment of life & find God – jai ho ! Be a Sadhu, an ascetic !
14) You don’t like the concept of God. You believe in Nature only – Welcome. (Trees are our friends and Prakriti or nature is worthy of worship).
15) You believe in one God or Supreme Energy. Superb! Follow Advaita philosophy
16) You want a Guru. Go ahead. Receive gyaan.
17) You don’t want a Guru.. Help yourself ! Meditate, Study !
18) You believe in Female energy ! Shakti is worshipped.
19) You believe that every human being is equal. Yeah! You’re awesome, come on let’s celebrate Hinduism! “Vasudhaiva kutumbakam” (the world is a family)
20) You don’t have time to celebrate the festival.
Don’t worry. One more festival is coming! There are multiple festivals every single day of the year.
21) You are a working person. Don’t have time for religion. Its okay. You will still be a Hindu.
22) You like to go to temples. Devotion is loved.
23) You don’t like to go to temples – no problem. You are still a Hindu!
24) You know that Hinduism is a way of life, with considerable freedom.
25) You believe that everything has God in it. So you worship your mother, father, guru, tree, River, Prani-matra, Earth, Universe!
26) And If you don’t believe that everything has GOD in it – No problems. Respect your viewpoint.
27) “Sarve jana sukhino bhavantu ” (May you all live happily)
You represent this! You’re free to choose, my dear Hindu!
This is exactly the essence of Hinduism, all inclusive .. That is why it has withstood the test of time inspite of repeated onslaught both from within and outside, and assimilated every good aspects from everything . That is why it is eternal !!!
There is a saying in Rigveda , the first book ever known to mankind which depicts the Hinduism philosophy in a Nutshell -” Ano bhadrah Krathavo Yanthu Vishwathah”- Let the knowledge come to us from every direction”.
Yes, quite amazing that it has survived in such an enlightened form in a world full of christians and Moslems intent on destroying all other spirituality. It is interesting to note the "sameness" of certain deities, as was being discussed. I think this holds true also between Hindu deities and those of other traditions. Or sometimes there's a bit of several deities from one tradition in one of another. Quetzalcoatl (Kukulkán) for example, is not something of Saraswati and Krishna as well? And of course the earliest Rig Veda deities
It really depends on how you look at it. I remember an argument of someone who wanted to incorporate Isis as a manifestation of devi into their Hinduism, and asked for opinions. Though it was mixed opinions, most reminds neutral to letting the guy do whatever he wanted to do. If gods are a manifestation of brahman, why not?
Yes... well of course there are purists in all traditions. But yes, I would say, all are manifestations of Bhagwan, but yes. People elsewhere recognize certain aspects of deities and combine them into a Quetzalcoatl, or Yemaya, or Cernunnos, or whomever.
Hinduism, so-called, is very attractive precisely because of its recognition of this potential for diversity... many paths lead to the truth. Amen to that, eh?