It may come as a surprise but plenty of people are still on the verge of finding a certain path towards the spirituality that they crave for. Plenty of religious affiliations could be found, from the oldest religion to the newer ones, I would like to call fast food religions. Suffice to say, all these resulted from the never-ending quest for the religious affiliations that would match those who were or still are seeking for it. I say differently, in the never-ending quest for religious affiliations, preferences should not be seen as the major factor mainly because it works for the person (hence the term fast food religion) but it should be the case that people find these affiliations in line with their faith and beliefs. It would also be healthy for a person to become his or her own skeptic when it comes to their affiliations, not to instill doubt, but to further strengthen the bond between his or her own beliefs. It would also then mean that investigating other religions is one way of taking the healthy way of deepening the bond of the person to his or her religion.
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In this particular paper, investigating Hinduism would be used in order to demonstrate the proposed way stated earlier, but always taking into consideration that respect is the common word that religious affiliates should instill in their minds. This respect definitely means intellectual investigations about a religion and not propaganda against other religions.
Over the years, many people have tried to understand the concepts of Christianity and Hinduism. Some even believed in the possibility of ever merging the two but others would say it is quite impossible. In my opinion merging two religions is an ambition that would definitely cause uproar among the devotees. Take for example the comparison between Jesus Christ and Krishna. Historically it could become impossible but in essence both could be seen as one. Their arrival into the religious scene, for instance, had created certain impact on the people affiliated to their religions. Hindu’s viewed Krishna as the reincarnate of Vishnu whose life should be seen as an example for their affiliates. Christian’s viewed Jesus Christ as the Son of God in the flesh, whose life should also be followed since he is the way to salvation. And the list would go on. Comparing and contrasting the two would only lead us to the subtle implications about the two. But, investigating further may hopefully clear the path towards a definite understanding for the two religions.
Hinduism is a system of belief that is henotheistic in nature. This is the kind of religion that believes in an Ultimate deity where other gods and goddess came from. They are like the polytheistic lot but the difference is that their belief in the one God despite the other gods and goddesses. The main idea in Hinduism is that they believe in a supreme force which is known as the Brahman and life on earth is cyclical or better known as the belief in reincarnation. Hence, their belief on Karma which is a guiding factor for a person’s morality. A person would then have to enter into a state of Moksha where one is already done over the state of death and rebirth, a goal that a Hindu would want to attain. Moksha is an experience of attaining the last stage in reincarnation. A person reaching this state had already surpassed the cycle of death and rebirth. Nirvana is also a state of fulfillment for the Hindu; it is where the Hindu could experience a sense of nothing and a greater connection to his or her spirituality. In theory, there are many practices and beliefs that the Hindus believed in, same as the numerous beliefs in Christianity.
Christianity is seen as monotheistic in nature. All those connected to it believes in a Higher being known as God and in line to this, the belief in Jesus Christ as the son of God in the flesh sent to lead a path to salvation. In believing this path towards salvation, a person would be led to attaining the promised place called Heaven. But in an opposition believing world, there is also a place called Hell, reserved for those who do not deserve what was promised by God. Some may question the implications that this claim would bring but by dissecting it further would definitely lead us to an affirmation that there is something that is far greater than us. Unexplainable it may seem but faith has a way in our lives that could directly affect us. A true believer would not hesitate to examine his or her belief since it could be a way in reaffirming the relationship between him/her and his/her God.
In this aspect of the paper, one could not help but notice to evaluate Hinduism and Christianity as a whole. The theoretical practices that the two religions have could be seen as a sharing of certain ideas. Take for example Karma.
This is in Christian terms could be seen as the charitable acts that they practice. For the Hindu it is a way of morality upkeep while the Christians could view this as a way to giving back to the people and share what was given to them by God. This kind of teaching is not lost on both religions; it has only become a matter of terms that were used. In the Bible it was said that God works in mysterious ways but in His mystery there is a certain glimpse of what He envisions for His constituents. In the act, altruistic in nature, others who had seen and felt God’s graces could be able to set an example to those who have yet to know him. In Romans 8:28, it was said that “…we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him…” and this I believe is reason enough for a person to bestow upon God the whole of his or her being. Another connected term about the two religions is the concept of the well-known Nirvana. The Hindu could sense this feeling of emptiness through certain meditations and if this could be attained, a certain spiritual feeling could be felt. In the case of the Christians, it was said that the bridge towards this path is Jesus Christ. As I have mentioned above God had given his only begotten Son for His people to be saved. In a way, Christ has become the path towards the spiritual nourishment of a believer. It was said that there are prophets who had already foreseen the coming of Christ. These prophets were known to have certain connections to God and they were the people lucky enough to be bestowed by the power to spread the word of God. These prophets thought were subjected to tests that could make them worthy of the term prophet.
Given that these prophets had attested to the coming of Jesus Christ, some of the non-believers are still skeptical about Christ’s existence in the flesh. If people would base this on historical accounts, there were certain facts about His existence but if it were in faith then people could always testify their own life as a proof of their own faith. In this aspect, I would like to clarify that the proof of existence or non-existence is not a big issue albeit it would not be in relevance to what was said and what is going to be said. It would have to be the belief of a person. Just like the other belief systems that are present, people would normally hang on to them. In my life as a believer, I have come to believe in Jesus Christ as my Nirvana. He has become the path that would lead to strengthening my faith in God. It was not an easy path. It was full of obstacles and restrictions due to societal reasons. Holding on to a belief is not an easy feat. People would tend to judge you and would try to catch you on unguarded moments.
Furthermore, people would tend to mock you for having insufficient facts that could help you make others understand. I had suggested earlier that by becoming your own skeptic would help since in this world there are plenty of skeptics who would unknowingly or knowingly try to weaken your resolve. In examining Hinduism, it was beautiful to learn that religion may be divided in numerous ways and divided by numerous terms, but one could see that religion had given us a perfect way to unite. We can be united by fighting those who refuses to believe in something that is far greater than ourselves. A friend of mine had said that some people argue about religion and who has the better religion that they have forgotten the true essence of the fight. It is not about the better religion but for us to spread what is important in our religion.
The Hindu has different beliefs and teachings and the Christians also have a way of preaching what was already shared to them by their fellow believers. Testifying to the greatness of my God is not about telling others that I have the better religion but it is a way of saying that I was humbled by the wonder that is my God. I believe in what was said about my God that He may be swift to punish but He is also merciful. Why else would He allow His son to be crucified? He had devised this plan so that His people would realize that His love knows no bounds. To those who are willing to know God will not be disappointed. In fact they could also feel His greatness and merciful ways. It was said that He is the forgiving God that would not only forgive but He could also help in guiding you towards a path that is good. His Son had led His people to splendid ways and it was just a glimpse of the promises that He has in store for us believers. Christ knowingly accepted crucifixion as His way of saying that my Father is still not lost in believing His people to return to Him.
In the Bible it was said that the coming of Christ would be a way to let others realize that God is ever present. In a chaotic world, a person could find solace in Him and could find the Nirvana that they are seeking for. People’s imperfections had made them a frustrated lot. They have devoted themselves in wanting to become like our God. Little did they know that these imperfections should be reason enough to make us realize that our frustrations are unwarranted especially when there is a Jesus Christ who is a good example of a happy life. Jesus Christ as the Son of God in the flesh did not rejoice in the wealth that He could have owned but He had seen a far superior scheme that God had waiting for us. He accepted a punishment that should not be His in order for that scheme to be realized by other people. Despite His sacrifice though, people are still lost in their frustration because of imperfection.
The grand scheme then that I could deduce is that by loving God, one would come to trust Him and in trusting Him one would come to terms with his or her imperfections. It may seem then that a cheerful giver and believer could easily see the goodness in the things that is around him or her. A person who does not believe would usually feel the desolate feeling of loss and deficiency. They could never be content of what they have and would likely seek things that they believe could give them satisfaction. In reading the Bible, one could not help that Jesus Christ’s manner of speaking is one that is content and satisfied. It was enough for Him to be blessed by the Holy Spirit and it was enough for Him that he could be able to preach the good tidings coming from His Father. This certain attitude was not lost to the people around Him and He would generally attribute this aura as the testimony of God.
It could then be seen that religion is not always the factor that could bring us closer to our God but the ways that we commit ourselves to it. Christianity is just another aspect that people had given as a label and a term, but it should be seen that the faith behind a certain belief is the thing that is rather important. I believe in God the creator of all things and I believe that Jesus Christ is His Son and that who shall ever believe in them would be saved. By assenting to this belief, I could fairly claim that the things that I do and the things that I experience has a purpose. I may not know what it is but I believe that being a person of this world is enough for me to realize that I have a purpose. Same as the Hindu, their belief is their own and it is healthy to have investigated it alongside with the experiences that is with my faith.
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