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Approaches to the Divine

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Brief Essay


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"Composed of philosophical and cultural ideas and unique art and practices, Hinduism is an eastern religion predominately practiced in India. Millions of people practice Hinduism which is one of the Earth’s oldest religions. Notably, this faith’s main distinctive qualities are the belief in reincarnation, the Path of Desire and the Path of Righteousness and one absolute being, Brahman. Hinduism seeks to answer the fundamental questions of life: what do we want out of this life and how can we obtain it? The religion explores the idea that there is more to us that meets the eye; an infinite being constrained by the desire for pleasures and wealth. And not until we set aside these aspirations can we realize our “supreme strength, the fullness of wisdom and unquenchable joy” (Smith, 26). Humans have an unrelenting desire to be closer to God, and in fact, to see him. This is not only true for Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita, a major Hindu scripture, but also for Muhammad in the Qur’an and St. Paul in the Holy Bible. Through the study of the Bhagavad Gita as well as Huston Smith’s The World’s Religions, there are four main ways to build the relationship between humans and the Divine."

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