Hinduism - Hinduism By the way, b.c.e. stands for...

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Hinduism By the way, b.c.e. stands for "Before the Common Era". You'll also see a.c.e. for "After the Common Era". Those are more appropriate expressions than before Christ and after Christ, or BC and AC because that's obviously from a Christian perspective. We are approaching this course from the concept of World Religions. Carl Jasper believed that there was an emergence of the idea of the individual self. This greatly concerned who and what is the human and proper human conduct. We're going to see this concept emerge in all of the world religions. The world religions we're studying today are the result of a profound change, according to Carl Jasper, that you can see around the globe. The change he described from the actual period was a change in the way religion functioned. It changed from cosmic maintenance, or keeping the world going, to an agent of personal transformation seeking enlightenment or salvation and those sorts of things. You can see cosmic maintenance functioning in early, early Hinduism and Davidic world. Then it transforms into this second function towards personal transformation in the classical period. You can see it in the coming of Buddhism which comes out of Hinduism. You can see it in Christianity. You can see it in Judaism in the way rabbinic Judaism becomes a force after the fall of the second temple in 70. We'll talk more about that later. You can see it around the world including Confucius and Daoism. It's a fascinating concept that the function of religion itself fundamentally changed. The world religions today are not so focused on cosmic maintenance as they are personal transformation. That is a philosophical position. It's not an absolute position. You may or may not agree with it. It's an interesting thing to view and it's not in your textbook. This would be an excellent slide to put on a quiz. Slide 2 These are the beginnings of Hinduism which is a term that refers to the people of the Indus River Valley. It's a name given by the British and was eventually adopted. It's not the best name for this religion. A better one would be Brahmanism and we'll see why. Hinduism comes out of perhaps the first or second most important area in the world for religion of which there are three primary areas. Africa is for the indigenous religions. It is thought that American Indians inherited their indigenous religion from Africa as people migrated from there through Siberia, across Alaska and down into North America. That is speculation but there are scientists trying to verify that through DNA testing. So, Africa is one center. The Middle East, the Tigris-Euphrates river valley would be for Western religions. India is the center for most of the Eastern religions; the oldest center that we're aware of but we're not sure what was going on
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in China and Japan. There is an indigenous religion in Japan that we're won't have time to discuss in this course. Hinduism comes out of the Indus river valley. What's significant there is the Aryan invasion, a
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Hinduism - Hinduism By the way, b.c.e. stands for...

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