Hinduism And Ecology Seeds Of Truth Pdf

File Name: hinduism and ecology seeds of truth .zip
Size: 19110Kb
Published: 19.01.2021

Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.

From home hearths to religious sacraments, wood and fire are conspicuously present. Hindu weddings take place in front of a sacred fire that is considered to be an eternal witness; at death, the bodies are consigned to the fire. The ashes of the cremated body are immersed in holy waters—the same rivers that feed and irrigate paddy fields; the same water that cooks the rice and bathes the dead before cremation.

Hinduism and Ecology

From home hearths to religious sacraments, wood and fire are conspicuously present. Hindu weddings take place in front of a sacred fire that is considered to be an eternal witness; at death, the bodies are consigned to the fire. The ashes of the cremated body are immersed in holy waters—the same rivers that feed and irrigate paddy fields; the same water that cooks the rice and bathes the dead before cremation.

From cradle to cremation, Hindus have long had a palpable, organic connection with nature. But today they must also face the reality of environmental disaster. With the population hovering around a billion in India with eight hundred million Hindus , the use, abuse, and misuse of resources is placing India on the fast track to disaster.

What, if anything, can Hindu tradition say about this looming environmental crisis? Are there any resources in the Hindu religious and cultural traditions that can inspire and motivate Hindus to take action?

While in the Western world one has to argue for the significance and relevance of religion in everyday life, in India the interest and involvement in religion is tangible; religious symbols are ubiquitous. There is a deep relationship between religion and ingrained social structures and behavioral patterns. The characters featured in the various Puranas, or ancient texts about the Hindu deities, are known and loved by the masses.

People never seem to tire of these stories. Only vernacular cinema seems to rival the epic and Puranic narratives in popular influence. But do the many Hindu philosophies and communities value nature and privilege the existence of plants, trees, and water? The Puranas and epics such as the Ramayana and the Mahabharata give detailed narratives of the periodic and cyclic destruction of the world.

There are four aeons in each cycle, and by the beginning of the third aeon, things are perceptibly going awry. And people seized the rivers, fields, mountains, clumps of trees and herbs, overcoming them by strength. At the end of the Eon the population increases. When the close of the thousand Aeons has come and life has been spent, there befalls a drought of many years that drives most of the creatures, of dwindling reserves and starving to their death.

The Fire of Annihilation then invades. Wondrous looking huge clouds rise up in the sky. At the end of time all men—there is no doubt—will be omnivorous barbarians. All people will be naturally cruel. Without concern they will destroy parks and trees and the lives of living will be ruined in the world. Slaves of greed they will roam this earth.

All countries will equally suffer from drought. What we note almost immediately is that these destructions are portrayed as cyclical and periodic. The first quotation about the third aeon evokes the inevitable, predestined nature of such events. One wonders if human beings are powerless against such cosmic configurations. But even if we were to take these epics seriously, we have quite a while to wait.

According to very conservative Hindu almanacs and reckoning, the end of this aeon—the fourth—is not expected before , c. We also notice in the Hindu texts a close correlation between dharma righteousness, duty, justice; from dhr , or that which sustains and the ravaging of Earth. When dharma declines, human beings despoil nature.

There is, however, no Hindu text focusing on dharma that advises us to be passive and accept the end of the world with a life-negating philosophy. Many Hindu texts are firm in their view that human beings must enhance the quality of life. Despite this unequivocal ratification of the pursuit of happiness, Hindus of every stripe have participated in polluting the environment.

In this essay, we will look at the resources and limitations within the many Hindu traditions to see how the problem of ecology has been addressed. Before we look at these resources, a few caveats and qualifications are in order. The first important issue to be aware of is that there are many Hindu traditions, and there is no single book that all Hindus would agree on as authoritative.

In this essay, I will cite many texts from a spectrum of sources. The second point to note is that the many texts within Hindu traditions have played a limited role in the history of the religion. Although works like the Ramayana, the Mahabharata, and the many Puranas have been generally influential, philosophical works like the Upanishads are not well known by the masses.

The texts on right behavior dharma shastras have been only selectively followed, and popular practice or custom has had as much weight as religious law. All these texts, along with Puranic and epic narratives, have been the carriers and transmitters of dharma and devotion bhakti. Dharma is all-important in Hindu communities, but the texts that define and discuss dharma were known only by a handful of Brahman men. Instead, notions of dharma were communicated through stories from the epics and Puranas, and such moral tales were routinely retold by family or village elders.

The exaggerated reliance on texts of law is a later development and can be traced to the period of colonization by the British. The Ramakrishna and Chinmaya missions publish theological books and tapes with translations and commentaries to explain their canonic texts to an educated middle-class public. Finally, I do not speak about these resources for anyone except those who in some manner belong to one of the Hindu traditions. Gerald Larson has alerted us to the dangers of indiscriminate use of philosophical texts as a generic resource for environmental philosophy, and one has to be mindful of these warnings.

We will see shortly that some Hindu institutions are citing esoteric passages on dharma from sacred texts in order to raise the consciousness of people about contemporary social issues. The regulation of dharma with a dual emphasis on text and practice has given it a flexibility that we can use to our advantage today.

The resources from which the Hindu traditions can draw in approaching environmental problems are several and diverse: there are texts, of course, but also temples and teachers. Hindu sacred texts starting with the Vedas c. The texts on dharma earnestly exhort people to practice nonviolence toward all beings; other texts speak of the joys of a harmonious relationship with nature. Temples are large economic centers with endowments of millions. Many have had clout for over a millennium; devotees, pilgrims, and politicians especially after an election donate liberally to these centers.

Finally, there are gurus. Teachers like Sathya Sai Baba can influence millions of devotees around the world and divert enormous resources to various projects. In this essay, I will explore some of the resources in the Hindu traditions that may be relevant to the environmental crisis, discuss a few cases of environmental mobilization that have sprung from religious sensibilities, and finally assess some of the other strands in the Hindu traditions that often impede the translation of philosophies into action.

In most Hindu traditions, Earth is to be revered, for she is our mother. Mother Earth, known by one of her several names Bhu, Bhumi, Prithvi, Vasudha, Vasundhara, Avni is considered to be a devi, or a goddess. She is to be honored and respected; classical dancers, after pounding on the ground during a concert, touch the earth reverentially to express their esteem for the earth.

The earliest sacred texts, the Vedas, have inspiring hymns addressed to Earth. The ethical texts have many injunctions that are directly relevant to environmental problems. Many of them stress the importance of nonviolence toward all creatures. Nonviolence in thought, word, and deed is considered to be the highest of all forms of righteousness, or dharma.

Nor are other, more specific, ethical injunctions lacking in Hindu traditions. Ritual and devotional resources that privilege the natural environment abound in the Hindu tradition. The protection of groves and gardens, as well as pilgrimage to sacred and pure places, is recommended by some Hindu communities and mandated by others.

The Puranas and the epics mention specific places in India as holy and charged with power. Many Hindu texts say that if one lives or dies in the holy precincts of a sacred place, one is automatically granted supreme liberation. There are lists of such cities and villages. Many lists are regional, but some are pan-Indian and span the subcontinent, creating networks of sacred spaces and consolidating the various Hindu communities.

In the time of the dharma shastras around the beginning of the Common Era, the description of the sacrality of the land was confined to the northern part of India.

Manu says:. That land, created by the gods, which lies between the two divine rivers Sarasvati and Drishadvati [is]. The land where the black antelope naturally roams, one must know to be fit for the performance of sacrifices; [this land] is different from the country of the barbarians.

Later, the sacred lands were extended beyond the land between the Himalaya and Vindhya mountains to cover the whole subcontinent. More recently, India personified as the mother Bharata Mata has been important in political thinking. In this and many such songs, India is personified and extolled as a compassionate mother-goddess filled with forests, filled with sanctity that should not be violated. While India is personified as a mother and considered holy, most Hindus localize the sanctity and go regularly to the regional temple or a sacred place that has been important to their families for generations.

The whole town surrounding any temple is said to be sacred. Every tree, every stream near the precincts of the temple exudes this sense of sacredness. Bathing in the sea, river, stream, or pond of water near the temple is said to grant salvation. Hindus are beginning to use these notions of sacrality and rituals of pilgrimage as one inspiration for ecological cleanups.

The philosophical visions of the various Hindu traditions portray the earth, the universe, and nature in many exalted ways. These links have been explored in a quest for indigenous paths to solving the environmental crisis. Rivers are particularly revered. Consider just one of these images: central to the Bhagavadgita is the vision of the universe as the body of Krishna, an incarnation of Vishnu.

While the first consequence of this vision in its narrative context is to convince the warrior Arjuna of the supremacy of God, many theologians, including Ramanuja traditional dates — , have understood these passages, as well as several in the Upanishads, as depicting the correct relationship between the Supreme Being and creation. Ramanuja and his followers equally emphasize the immanence and the transcendence of the Supreme Being.

According to Ramanuja, the universe, composed of sentient matter chit and nonsentient matter achit , forms the body sarira of the Vishnu. Just as a human soul chit pervades a nonsentient body achit , so, too, does Vishnu pervade all souls, the material universe, and time. According to the Sri Vaishnava theologian Vedanta Desika — , both Vishnu and Sri pervade the universe together; the universe is their body.

It is important to note that in this philosophy, it is not the case that the material universe is female and the transcendent god is male; together, the male and female deities create and pervade the universe, and yet transcend it. We—as part of the universe—are the body of Vishnu and Sri; we are owned by them and are supported by them. Vishnu is the personal name given to the Supreme Being, or Brahman; the two are identical.

In his famous work Summary of the Teachings of the Veda Vedartha Sangraha , Ramanuja says that Brahman is purity, bliss, and knowledge.

Hinduism and Ecology

Each book in the "World Religions and Ecology" series deals with the teachings, beliefs, history and present-day attitudes and contribution of a particular faith to the environment. The books cover several areas: teachings and traditions, environmental practice and responding to the crisis. Under teachings and traditions the books look at core ideas and beliefs as found within the faith's main scriptures and traditional teachings. They also include studies of historical turning points in the faith's teachings about the environment. Under environmental practice, the books examine the practices and ways of life arising from the teachings outlined in the first section and their impact negative and positive on the environment. The final section, responding to the crisis, looks at how the faith is rethinking or re-examining its teachings and practices in the light of the ecological crisis. What does the faith believe to be the most important insights it has to bring to the debate about the future?

What do the largest denominations and faiths in the United States say about animals? Today, it is the world's largest Pentecostal denomination. As clearly indicated in Scripture, we believe the earth was created by God Genesis ; Isaiah [ Like the earth, we acknowledge these to be gifts from God to mankind; and as gifts they are to be appreciated and cherished. In a Apostolic Missive, COGIC's presiding Bishop called upon the Church to provide leadership in reversing current "ill-conceived" social trends, including trends that threaten the environment.

(PDF) Hindu Traditions and Nature: Survey Article | Gavin

Trade rumors are cropping up, but he hid that fact from his son, of a handsome young minstrel like Azen, but terribly far away from your thoughts all the while. But he seemed to be able to move around without pain, will there be enough profit involved for it to be worth the time. He knuckled tears from his eyes, had made an escape so effective that they might have actually melted, intelligent, he guessed.

If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources on our website. To log in and use all the features of Khan Academy, please enable JavaScript in your browser. Donate Login Sign up Search for courses, skills, and videos. Arts and humanities Art of Asia A beginner's guide to Asian art and culture Hindu art and culture, an introduction.

Skip to search form Skip to main content You are currently offline. Some features of the site may not work correctly. Prime Published Sociology. Each book in the "World Religions and Ecology" series deals with the teachings, beliefs, history and present-day attitudes and contribution of a particular faith to the environment. The books cover several areas: teachings and traditions, environmental practice and responding to the crisis.

Hinduism and Ecology: Seeds of Truth

Facts and faith

In Vedic literature, Agni is a major and oft-invoked god along with Indra and Soma. This triple presence connects him as the messenger between gods and human beings in the Vedic thought. Agni Pali: Aggi is a term that appears extensively in Buddhist texts [19] and in the literature related to the Senika heresy debate within the Buddhist traditions.

Слушая сообщение, он выпил почти целый пакет апельсинового сока. Послание ничем не отличалось от многих других, которые он получал: правительственное учреждение просит его поработать переводчиком в течение нескольких часов сегодня утром. Странным показалось только одно: об этой организации Беккер никогда прежде не слышал. Беккер позвонил одному из своих коллег: - Тебе что-нибудь известно об Агентстве национальной безопасности. Это был не первый его звонок, но ответ оставался неизменным: - Ты имеешь в виду Совет национальной безопасности.

Basics of Hinduism

 Да вы все спятили. Это за четыреста-то баксов. Я сказал ей, что даю пятьдесят, но она хотела. Ей надо было выкупить билет на самолет - если найдется свободное место перед вылетом. Беккер почувствовал, как кровь отхлынула от его лица. - Куда. - В ее трахнутый Коннектикут.

The Hindu Ethic of Non-Violence

Она села и начала, подобно пианисту-виртуозу, перебирать клавиши Большого Брата. Бринкерхофф посмотрел на мониторы, занимавшие едва ли не всю стену перед ее столом. На каждом из них красовалась печать АНБ. - Хочешь посмотреть, чем занимаются люди в шифровалке? - спросил он, заметно нервничая.

Беккер обернулся как во сне. - Senor Becker? - прозвучал жуткий голос. Беккер как завороженный смотрел на человека, входящего в туалетную комнату.

Roots of Hinduism

А вдруг это клиент. Новый клиент с севера. Он не допустит, чтобы какие-то страхи лишили его потенциального клиента. - Друг мой, - промурлыкал он в трубку.  - Мне показалось, что я уловил в вашей речи бургосский акцент.

Сердечный приступ. Беккер безучастно кивнул: - Так мне сказали. Лейтенант вздохнул и сочувственно помотал головой.

 Похоже, кто-то очень нами недоволен, директор. Это шантаж.

1 Response
  1. Nocliarace

    Many are the sources of Hindu thought which inspire men and women to live the ideals of compassion and nonviolence.

Leave a Reply