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Conversions and Hinduism

 

Some religions like Islam or Chrstianity consider their religions to be very special, therefore preach/lure/force people belonging to other faiths to convert into their respective faiths. But Hinduism never believed in conversions, thus imposing on others its value systems and worship its God only.

Hinduism has neither repulsed any trend vehemently, nor allowed others to sweep its own established faith and culture off its roots. Caste system has acted as a shield. It was a major force for the failure of Islam, Christianity and other religions to make headway in India even after mass conversion, even at the time when they ruled India.

All incoming groups into Hinduism on their own terms and legitimized their beliefs, behavior patterns and life styles with freedom to evolve and change according to their internal rhythm.

In the past thousands of years, Hinduism welcomed and co-opted them into itself at appropriate time. It has included smoothly numerous religious and social groups at different points of time, without annihilating their originality or its own internal order. Caste system provided a unique mechanism to do so. It assigned to each new group a separate caste identity allowing freedom to worship its own god or goddess, maintain its own rules/regulations/rituals, way of life and authority to control conduct of its members, and still made it an integral part of the social whole.

Hinduism has inspired to accommodate people of all faiths. It has preached people to have faith in an all pervading omnipresent god, multiplicity of god and goddesses as representing some portion of the infinite aspect of the Supreme Being. It concedes validity to all the religions and does not lay down strictures against any faith or reject any religion or its god as false. That is why there are so many castes and along with them so many god and goddesses in India. Hinduism never tried to destroy other faiths or sects. India provided enough space for all faiths to co-exist on the basis of mutual respect.
Within its fold all persons having different faiths are accommodated, ranging from atheists to monotheists and polytheists. That is why, all the twelve major religions of the world are present and flourishing in India without much hindrance. It allowed all religions to preserve their distinct identities, which came down to the present generation in an unbroken chain of succession, with some modifications and adaptations.
 
 
 

 

 

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September 23, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized |

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