Lecture 3-Hinduism

Lecture 3-Hinduism - Lecture 3 Hinduism 1*The only way to truly understand it is to be born into it*Term"Hinduism didn't start being used until the

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Lecture 3 Hinduism 1 *The only way to truly understand it is to be born into it. *Term “Hinduism” didn’t start being used until the 19 th century by the British *700s – Arabs called India “Al-Hind”, which gave rise to the term “hindu” *Broad view: Whole complex of beliefs and institutions from the beginning to now *Narrower, more Western view: Ancient period = Development period; vast social/religious system that appears in about the 200s I. The Religion of the Vedic Age a. Pre-Aryan India – 1800 i. Harappan Civilization – 2500 BCE 1. Huge complex of cities 2. Larger than Sumer or Old Egypt 3. Harappa in north (Major city) 4. Mohenjo-Daro in south (Major city) 5. Indus River fed by a. Melting snows of the Himalayas b. Monsoon rains c. Deposited soil in the valley 6. Domesticated animals a. Cow/bull i. Also had sacrificial uses 7. Sophisticated agricultural techniques a. Irrigation, etc. 8. Made goods a. Pottery b. Mirrors c. Bronze tools and weapons – Bronze Age technology *Had a writing system, but largely can’t be translated yet ii. Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro 1. Densely populated a. Square grid plan with walls i. Tells us it was an organized society b. Standardized kiln-dried bricks i. State regulated? c. Autocratic government for construction d. Cities possessed large fortified citadels i. Tells us there was a military and enemies e. Smaller residences also made of brick f. Bathing areas and sewer system 2. Cities were major trading centers a. Traded with Mesopotamia, China, Burma b. Very conservative society i. Not influenced much by external influences 3. Religion a. Not forerunner for Hinduism, but embodies some of same principles b. Powerful priest class c. Prominent deity was male with horned head i. No one certain if he’s a prototype for Mahisha or Shiva d. Several goddesses related to fertility e. Extensive administrative class served the priests f. Law of Karma i. Deeds or works ii. Cause/effect iii. Not good or bad
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Lecture 3 Hinduism 2 g. Reincarnation 4. India – Indus River Valley b. Demise of Harappan Civilization – 1600-1200 BCE i. Severe flooding ii. Climactic shifts – more arid 1. Evidence says Mohenjo-Daro was a port city, but it is now several miles from the Indus River iii. Aryan nomads 1. Indo-Europeans with horses 2. Horses an unknown quality in warfare for sedentary world 3. Kept moving because it was becoming drier – didn’t destroy Harappa c. Arrival of the Aryans i. Aryan incursions and society 1. Warrior people, not at level of civilization as Harappa 2. Not a distinct race – Indo-European ii. Ganges River Valley – 2000-1000 BCE 1. Settled and became agriculturalists 2. Little interest in sculpture and painting 3. Martial society (Upper classes = warriors) iii. The VEDAS or religious hymns (foundation for Hinduism) 1. Chief god was Indra, god of battle and lightning a. Has multiple arms, rides an elephant b. Also a sky god; elephant was probably added later 2. Ramayana and Mahabharata: Most likely stories of clashes between
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This note was uploaded on 04/18/2008 for the course HIST 2860 taught by Professor May during the Spring '08 term at N. Georgia.

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Lecture 3-Hinduism - Lecture 3 Hinduism 1*The only way to truly understand it is to be born into it*Term"Hinduism didn't start being used until the

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