IslamHinduismPaper1 - Arnold 1 Gregory Arnold Shattering...

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Arnold 1 Gregory Arnold Shattering the Wall: Redefining Religious Heterodoxy in the Indian Subcontinent Beginning with the fanciful tales of the East recited by explorers like Marco Polo, and later the Orientalists of the colonial era, Western minds have sought to understand the peoples and their beliefs in a context that is both understandable, yet analytical. However, the ideas of the Indian subcontinent are not as clear-cut or as conformist to the traditional Abrahamic and Western mentalities as it would first appear. (von Stitencron) In the latter half of the 20 th century, Western scholars began to discuss revisionist views to the naturally upheld views of Indian religion. Both authors Tony K. Stewart and Heinrich von Stietencron describe the entities that are commonly amalgamated as “Islam” and “Hinduism” as really umbrella terms that instead describe a myriad of unique and, sometimes, contrasting beliefs. It has become a particularly popular idea among related academic circles that the idea of unified “Hinduism” is a Western invention. One of the scholars at the forefront of such research is Heinrich von Stietencron. In his essay “Religious Configurations in Pre-Muslim India and the Modern Concept of Hinduism”, von Stitencron uses a number of early, pre-colonial texts, with the main one being the Somaśambhupaddhati , an 11 th century South Indian text that describes the various rituals of a Saivite religious group. (von Stietencron: 53-54) In this text, great lengths are made to cover the process by which one becomes a proper Saivite, as the beliefs of said cult are stated that,
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This note was uploaded on 01/30/2012 for the course PERS 2001 taught by Professor Naderbolouri during the Fall '11 term at GWU.

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IslamHinduismPaper1 - Arnold 1 Gregory Arnold Shattering...

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