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Various influences on Hinduism

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Influence of Sri Adi Shankaracharya on Hinduism

The influence of Sri Adi Shankaracharya on Hinduism is remarkable. During his short but active life, he traveled all over the country, refuting atheistic and materialistic systems of thought, writing commentaries on the Upanisads, on the Brahma Sutra and on the Gita. He not only interpreted these scriptures and built up his thesis with wonderful clarity and depth of exposition but also restructured Indian thought and destroyed many dogmas through his Advaita doctrine. He established several mathas in India to propagate the Vedantic or Advaita doctrine. He wrote several poems dedicated to Narsimha, Sri Krishna, Lakshmi, and Annapurna. His most popular work on Parvati or Durga is the Saundaryalahari.


Influence of Bhakti Cult on Hinduism

The great reformers of the Bhakti Cult are Ramananda, Kabir, Nanak, Mirabai, Vallabhacharya, Chaitanya, Tulasidasa, and Tukaram. Ramananda and Kabir stressed on the belief in a supreme deity and recognized no caste distinctions. Nanak founded the religion of the Sikhs under the influence of Hinduism and Islam. Mirabai composed Bhajans with devotion to Lord Krishna. Vallabhacharya was influential for the spread of Vaishnavism in northern parts of India. Chaitanya formed his own Bhakti cult. TulasiDas wrote Ramayana and other works. Saint Tukaram composed devotional songs.  All these reformers popularized the spirit of devotion.


Influence of The Brahmo Samaj on Hinduism

In 18th century, the Hinduism suffered a serious decline mainly because the impact of a completely different civilization. The English destroyed the isolation of Indians. There were movements started for the renaissance of Hindu life and thought. Raja Ram Mohan Roy was the most outstanding pioneer of these movements. He emphasized on the universalism in tune with the spirit of the Upanishads. He started a controversy with the Christian missionaries and founded the Brahmo Samaj on the basis of theism. The Brahmo Samaj had no faith in any scripture as an authority and no faith in avatars. It denounced polytheism and idol worships. It was completely against caste restrictions.


Influence of The Arya Samaj on Hinduism

The Arya Samaj was founded by Swami Dayanand Saraswati. It attacked the Brahmo Samaj for its pro-European and pro-Christian attitude. Being a great Sanskrit scholar and a believer in the doctrines of Karma and Rebirth, Swami Dayanand revived the Vedic ideals and laid stress on Brahmacharya and Sannyasa. He believed implicitly in the ancient scriptures, disavowing Puranic Hinduism in favour of Vedic Hinduism. One of its main activities was Suddhi, a purification ceremony, by which non-Hindus are converted to Hinduism. It also reclaimed many Hindus who had been converted to Islam and Christianity.


Influence of The Theosophical Society on Hinduism

The Theosophical Society, founded in 1875 by Col. Olcott and Madame Blavatsky, co-operated with the Arya Samaj in organizing the life of Hindus by checking the activities of Christian missionaries. Dr. Annie Besant joined this Society. Claiming that she had been a Hindu in her former birth, Annie Besant worked throughout her life for the regeneration of Hindu thought and Hindu life. She popularized the Hindu ideals through her numerous publications and eloquent speeches. With guidance of Dr. Annie Besant, the Theosophical Society was able to spread the fundamental principles of the Hindu religion such as the Karma, the Reincarnation, the Yoga and the spiritual evolution.


Influence of Sri Ramakrishna and Vivekananda on Hinduism

Sri Ramakrishna Paramhamsa, a great devotee having a broad outlook of universalism accepted the discipline of Yoga and Tantric Sadhana. He underwent the discipline of the Vaisnava, the Christian and the Islamic ways of life. In order to rouse the religious feelings in the worldly minded people, he trained a devoted group of students and the most outstanding of them was Swami Vivekananda. Sri Ramakrishna brought old truths to light through parables and images. He stressed on the fact that realization is the essence of the religion and all the religions are the paths leading to the same goal. Swami Vivekananda started Ramakrishna Mission and movement to preach the essence of the truths of Hinduism. He emphasized on the essential features of Hinduism such as universality, impersonality, rationality, catholicity and optimism. His great contribution to Hinduism was in applying the Hindu creed to the elevation of the masses and abolishing India's isolation from the world in many aspects of social life. His great and worldwide organization, the Ramakrishna Mission worked for the spiritual welfare and multiform amelioration of the living conditions of the people of India and other countries.


Influence of Sri Aurobindo on Hinduism

Sri Aurobindo Ghosh gave new interpretations of the Vedas and the Vedanta. In his essay on the Gita he expounded on the integral view of life. His great work, The Life Divine contains his philosophy of the descent of the divine into matter. His mission concentrated on the restatements of old ideals and explained the true methods of Yoga apart from mere asceticism and illusionism.

An Introduction to Hinduism
Known as “Santana Dharma” in Sanskrit, the Hinduism is the world's oldest organized and most profound religion. It is the everlasting religion which was founded, exists and flourishes in India. It is not founded by a single leader and does ...


The Vedas
The earliest literary creations were the Rig-Veda, the Sama Veda, the Yajur Veda and the Atharva Veda. The Vedas had the Mantras or the hymns, the Brahmanas or the ritual and the ceremonies, the Aranyakas or the forest speculations and ...


The Upanishads
The Upanisads being diverse in character and outlook recognize the intuition rather than reason as a path to ultimate truth. Even though there are supposed to be 108 or more Upanishads, twelve of them are recognized as the principal units. ...


The Epics of India
In the period of the Epics which succeeded the period of the Upanisads, the Ramayana and the Mahabharat, philosophical doctrines were presented in the form of stories and parables. The Avatars or the incarnations of Vishnu, assume a prominent place ...


The Bhagavad-Gita
The Bhagavad-Gita contains the essence of Indian teaching about the duties of life as well as spiritual obligations. It emphasizes on the importance of knowledge, charity, penance and worship. It is referred as the song of the divine one, the ...


The Dharma Sastras
The Dharma Sastras contain treatises on ethical and social philosophy compiled to deal systematically with the proper conduct of life and describe social, ethical and religious obligations. The Sruti and the Smriti are the two authoritative sources of Hinduism. Sruti ...


The Puranas
The Puranas being expressed in the form of parables and narratives have become the scripture for the common people. They are encyclopedias furnishing an image of spiritual, religious, social, political and cultural life comprising an astonishingly varied repertory of folklore ...


Influence of Buddhism and Jainism
Buddhism is a religion with a complex history and system of beliefs. Its four noble truths comprise the essence of Buddha's teachings. They are the truth of suffering, the truth of the cause of suffering, the truth of the end ...


Influence of Vaishnavism
Vaishnavism sometimes referred as the heart of Hinduism is the largest community within the Hinduism worshipping the God Lord Vishnu. There are many divisions focusing on one form or avatar of Vishnu. The twelve Alvars laid the foundations for the ...


Various influences on Hinduism
Influence of Sri Adi Shankaracharya on HinduismThe influence of Sri Adi Shankaracharya on Hinduism is remarkable. During his short but active life, he traveled all over the country, refuting atheistic and materialistic systems of thought, writing commentaries on the Upanisads, ...


On Hindu Gods and Goddesses
The Hindus believe in the Supreme Being and think that he is the god of all religions. The cosmic activity of the Supreme Being has three important tasks such as the creation, the preservation and the dissolution and the recreation. ...


Hindu God - Lord Ganesha
Lord Ganesha is a unique Hindu deity in the human form with the head of an elephant. He is believed to be the power of the Supreme Being which removes the obstacles and ensures success in human endeavors. So every ...


Hindu God - Lord Brahma
Lord Brahma symbolizes the creation aspect of the Supreme Reality. Being the first member of the Hindu Trinity, he is called as the creator of the Universe. His divine consort is Saraswati who is the Goddess of learning and knowledge. ...


Hindu God - Lord Vishnu
Lord Vishnu is the God of preservation in the Universe preserving and sustaining the Universe. The four arms of the lord signify his omnipresence and omnipotence. The two front arms indicate the lord's activity in the physical world and ...


Hindu God - Lord Shiva
Lord Shiva is the God of recreation in the cyclic process of creation, preservation, dissolution and recreation of the universe. He is also referred as the destructor. His cosmic role is to balance between the opposing forces of good and ...


Hindu God - Goddess Durga
Goddess Durga maintains the moral order and the righteousness in the creation. In Sanskrit, the word Durga means a fort or a place that is protected and thus difficult to reach. Goddess Durga is also called as the Divine Mother, ...


Hindu God - Goddess Lakshmi
Goddess Lakshmi is symbolism of wealth and prosperity. In Sanskrit, the word ''Lakshmi'' means "goal." She represents the goal of life including worldly and spiritual prosperity. She is also called as Shri, who is the divine spouse of Lord Vishnu. ...


Hindu God - Goddess Saraswati
Goddess Saraswati is the deity of learning, knowledge, and wisdom. In Sanskrit, the word Saraswati means "the essence of the self." Goddess Saraswati is the divine wife of Lord Brahma. She is the creative power of Brahma. She is worshipped ...


More Hindu Gods
Hindu God - Lord RamaLord Rama being the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu, worshipping him is very popular among all Hindus. In temples Rama is accompanied by his faithful wife, Sita, devoted brother Lakshmana and beloved devotee Hanuman. The great ...


Influence of Navagraha on your life
Navagraha or the nine planets influence the life of every person. It can either give harmony or misery to the individual as per its movements. There are Shanthis and Parikaras specific to each planet to get rid of the evil ...


Hindu Philosophy
The Hindu philosophy is the longest surviving philosophy with several historical stages. The various schools of philosophy had different approaches to reality but they considered the Vedas as the authoritative and believed in the permanent individual self, Atman. Most of ...


The Samkhya School of Philosophy
The Samkhya is the oldest of the orthodox philosophical systems in Hinduism postulating that the universe consists of two eternal realities such as the Purusha or the soul and the Prakriti or the matter or nature. Being the silent spectators ...


The Yoga School of Philosophy
The Yoga which is considered to have arisen from the Samkhya philosophy has its primary text as the Bhagavad Gita. It explores the four primary systems of the Karma-Yoga, the Buddhi-Yoga, the Dhyana-Yoga and the Bhakti-Yoga. Being many million years ...


The Nyaya School of Philosophy
The Nyaya School of philosophy is based on texts called the Nyaya Sutras. They were written by Aksapada Gautama. The most important contribution of this school is its methodology based on a system of logic that has been adopted by ...


The Vaisheshika School of Philosophy
Founded by the sage Kanada, the Vaisheshika School of philosophy postulates an atomic pluralism. Accordingly all objects in the physical universe are reducible to a certain number of atoms, and the God is regarded as the fundamental force causing the ...


The Purva Mimamsa School of Philosophy
The Purva Mimamsa School established the authority of the Vedas through the formulation of the rules of Vedic interpretation. Its believers assumed that one must have unquestionable faith in the Vedas and perform the fire-sacrifices or yajnas regularly. Accordingly, it ...


The Vedanta School of Philosophy
The Vedanta School of Philosophy was also known as the Uttara Mimamsa school, concentrated on the philosophical teachings of the Upanishads rather than on the ritualistic injunctions of the Brahmanas.With the traditional Vedic karma kanda being continued to be practiced ...


Hinduism as a Religion
Hinduism is a religion with various gods and goddesses. It differs from other organized religions in many aspects. It is neither based on a particular founder nor on a book and is not controlled by a central institution or authority. ...


Worship at Temple
Even though the god is omnipresent, there should be a way to worship him and get his grace. The temples are built for the same purpose to focus the power of the lord in a consecrated idol. They are the ...


Temple Architecture of India
The Hindu temples developed over two thousand years depict excellent architectural evolution which took place within the boundaries of strict models derived from religious considerations. In Hindu tradition, the Temple architecture is a religious architecture which is connected to astronomy ...


Temple Arts of India
Mural PaintingsMural Paintings are the most common temple paintings and its evolution in temples can be traced from Ajanta to Kerala. Linked intrinsically with Indian painting traditions, the Murals are the earliest evidences unearthed from the remnants of ancient civilization. ...


Forms of Hindu worship
The process of worship in Hinduism involves the use of three basic techniques such as the mantra, the tantra and the yantra. The mantra symbolizes the path of knowledge, the tantra symbolizes the path of devotion and the yantra symbolizes ...


About Hindu Prayers
The Hindu Prayer is the part and parcel of the Vedic lifestyle. The vedas have the large collection of mantras and prayer rituals extolling a single supreme force, Brahman. The prayer of Brahman is focused on the personal forms of ...


Darshan in Hinduism
In Sanskrit, the word “Darshan” means the sight, or the vision, or the apparition, or the glimpse. It is used for the vision of the divine mainly of a god or a very holy person or artifact. Darshan is the ...


Pooja in Hinduism
The Pooja is another form of worship to the deities of the Hindu Religion which involves prayers, offerings and sacrifices. The Hindu devotees perform the Pooja in a fixed, ritualistic pattern. It is believed to establish a bridge between the ...


Pradakshina in Hinduism
The parikrama or the pradakshina or the circumambulation means circling the sacred object. It has deeper meaning in the religious space connecting the devotee to the cosmos. It is performed by circumambulating around a sacred person, sacred image, a sacred ...


Prasad in Hinduism
The word ‘prasad’ implies to give peace. It is the sacred offering of the god. During any form of worship, Hindus offer certain items to god. Based on the ability of the devotee, many types of items are offered like


Basic norms to be followed in a temple
The house of worship for Hindus is the temple. It is in this place the divine relationship with the god can be easily accomplished. It is the place reserved for religious and spiritual activities. There are many elaborate measures taken ...


Temples of Andhra Pradesh - Sri Venkateswara Temple, Tirupathi
Sri Venkateswara temple is an ancient and sacred temple located on the seventh peak, Venkatachala or Venkata Hill of the Tirupati Hill. It lies on the southern banks of Sri Swami Pushkarini. The deity Venkateswara is also called as the ...


Temples of Andhra Pradesh - Srisailam Temple
The Srisailam temple is situated on the border of the ancient sacred hill of Srigiri on the south bank of the Krishna River, in the Nallamalai range of Andhra Pradesh at 232 km south of Hyderabad. The Srisailam is also


Temples of Andhra Pradesh - Bhadrachalam Sri Rama Temple
The Bhadrachalam Sri Rama temple, being the abode of Lord Rama is situated in Khamman district on the bank of the holy river Godavari at a distance of 325 kms from Hyderabad. Lord Rama is said to have crossed the ...


Temples of Andhra Pradesh - Sri Kalahasthi Temple
The Sri Kalahasti temple is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and is one of the Pancha Bhoota Stalams. The Pancha Bhoota Stalam is related to the temples celebrating Shiva as the embodiment of the primary elements. The air ...


Temples of Andhra Pradesh - Amareswara Swamy Temple
The Amareswara Swamy temple is located on a small hillock referred to as Krouncha Shaila in Amaravati, about 15 miles away from Guntur near Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh. This temple constitutes one of the five Pancharama temples of Andhra Pradesh ...


More Temples of Andhra Pradesh
Warangal Temple, Andhra Pradesh The Warangal temple is the Thousand Pillar Temple which is situated at 4-km from Hanumakonda crossroad in Warangal district. It is a fine specimen of Kakatiya architecture and sculpture built in the style of Chalukya ...


Major Temples of Goa
Temples of Goa > Sri Shanta Durga TempleShri Devi Shantadurga temple is located at Kavlem in Ponda Taluk of Goa. This temple is the biggest temple in Goa. The temple constructed during the reign of Maratha ruler Shahu Raje of ...


Major Temples of Gujarat
Major Temples of  Gujarat > Sri Somanath TempleSri Somnath temple is known as the Eternal Shrine as it has withstood the shocks of time and the attacks of the destroyers. Situated in Prabhas Kshetra in Saurashtra at 79 kms from ...


Major Temples of Jammu and Kashmir
Temples of  Jammu and Kashmir - Amarnath Temple The Amarnath temple is one of the most revered pilgrimage places in India. The cave is located at 86 miles north east of Srinagar at 13000 feet above sea level. Surrounded ...


Temples of Karnataka - Annapoorneshwari Temple
Sri Annapoorneshwari Temple is located at Horanadu around 100 Kms from Chikmagalur. It is an ancient and revered shrine located in amidst thick forests and valleys. The Deity of the temple is Sri Annapoorneshwari, a form of Parvati. This idol ...


Temples of Karnataka - Badami Caves
Being the capital of Chalukyas, Badami located at the mouth of a ravine between two rocky hills has the world famous cave temples dating back 6th or 7th centuries. These temples are all hewn out of sand stone on the ...


Temples of Karnataka - Chamundeshwari Temple
The Chamundeshwari temple is located on the top of Chamundi Hill which is about 3 kms from Mysore City. There are about one thousand steps to the hill. The temple is believed to be built in 12th century by Hoysalas ...


Temples of Karnataka - Shri Dharmasthala Temple
Shri Dharmasthala temple located in the village of Dharmasthala, in Belthangady Taluk of South Kanara District of Karnataka State. It is one of the most sacred places in South India. It is situated in on the Mangalore-Charmady Road 40 miles ...


Temples of Karnataka - The Gokarna Temple
Gokarna located at a distance of 170 km from Mangalore is a celebrated pilgrimage center on the coast of Karnataka, enshrining the Aatma Lingam Mahabaleshwar. It is referred as one of the 7 Mukti Stalas of Karnataka. The other six ...


Temples of Karnataka - Mookambika Temple
Sri Mookambika temple is situated at the foot of a hill called Kudashtri at Kollur about 135 kms from Mangalore. It is one of the seven 'Mukti Sthalams' of Parasurama Kshetra situated in Karnataka. The deity of the temple is ...


Temples of Karnataka - Sringeri Temple
The Sringeri temple is situated amidst the Sahyadri hills in Chikmagalur district of Karnataka on the left bank of Tungabhadra river at 150 km from Mangalore. Being the home of Sharada Peetham established by the revered saint Sri Adi Shankaracharya, ...


Temples of Karnataka - Vishnumurthy Temple
Shree Vishnumurthy Temple is situated in Kulai town at 15 kms north of Mangalore along the west coast high way. It is one of the ancient Vishnu shrines in Mangalore. Shree Vishnumurthy, another form of Lord Mahavishnu is the main ...


Temples of Karnataka - Udupi Sri Krishna Temple
The Udupi Sri Krishna temple located at 60 kms from Mangalore is one of the most popular shrines dedicated to Lord Krishna in the southern region of India. It was built in 13th century and the idol of Krishna was ...


Temples of Kerala - Ambalapuzzha Sri Krishna Temple
The Ambalapuzzha Sri Krishna temple is situated in Ambalapuzzha, a small town in Alapuzzha district of Kerala State. It is one of the three important Sri Krishna temples in the state of Kerala. It is believed to have been built ...


Temples of Kerala - Thiruvananthapuram Attukal Temple
The Attukal Bhagavathy temple in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala is one of the ancient temples of South India and is popularly known as the Sabarimala of the Women. The Goddess in the temple of Attukal is worshipped as the Supreme Mother. The ...


Temples of Kerala - Sree Guruvayoorappan Temple
Located at 29 km north-west of Thrissur District of Kerala, the Guruvayur is one of the most important pilgrimage centers of South India. It is called as the Bhoolokavaikunta meaning the heaven on the Earth. It is also called as ...


Temples of Kerala - Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple
Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple, located inside the East Fort in Thiruvananthapuram of Kerala is dedicated to Lord Padmanabha, a form of Vishnu. The temple has Vishnu enshrined in Anananthasayanam posture which is in eternal sleep of yognidra. Sri Padmanabhaswamy ...


Temples of Kerala - Sabarimala Temple

About Sabarimala Sree Swamy Ayyappa Temple Sri Sabarimala Sree Swamy Ayyappa temple situated in the Western Ghats Mountains at an elevation of 4135 feet above sea level is the most famous and prominent among all the Shastha temples. ...


Temples of Kerala - Thirunavaya Temple
The Thiruvanaya Navamukunda Temple, located at 8 km south of Tirur, near Ponnani in Malappuram district on the banks of the river Bharathapuzha is popular for holding immense historical importance. In this place, Mamangam, a grand assembly of the rulers ...


Temples of Kerala - Thirunelli Temple
The Thirunelli Temple located at 30 kms from Mananthavadi in Wayanad of Kerala is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu on the side of Brahmagiri hills close to Papanasini River which is believed to have curative effects on the ...


Temples of Kerala- Vadakkunnathan Temple
The Vadakkkunnathan Temple located in Thrissur of Kerala is one of the largest temples in Kerala which is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This 1000 year old temple is a classic example of the Kerala style of architecture with beautiful murals ...


Temples of Kerala- Chottanikkara Bhagavathy Temple
The Chottanikkara Bhagavathy Temple located at 17kms from Ernakulam of Kerala is one of the most celebrated Hindu shrines of Kerala. The main deity being Rajarajeswari or Adiparasakthi or Durga Bhagavathy or the mother Goddess was brought from Mookambika Temple ...


Major Temples of Maharastra
Temples of Maharastra - Mumbai Devi MandirMaa Mumbadevi temple in Mumbai is temple of Goddess Shakthi. The name of the city Mumbai is also derived from Maa Mumbadevi. The original temple built in 1737 at Victoria Terminus Station in Bori ...


Temples of Orissa - Jagannath Temple
The Jagannath temple is situated in Puri, on the east coast of India, in the state of Orissa. The main presiding deity is Lord Krishna or Jagannath. It is an ancient shrine having a wooden image. There are also wooden ...


Temples of Orissa - Konark Temple
The Konark temple is a colossal temple dedicated to the Sun god. It is a magnificiant temple with extremely beautiful sculptures reflecting the genius of the architects. The combination of Konark with Bhubaneshwar and Puri is referred as the golden ...


Temples of Rajasthan - Ambika Mata Temple

The Ambikamata Temple is situated in Jagat about 58 km from Udaipur. It is called as the Khajuraho of Rajasthan. Even though the temple is small in size, it is quite detailed and dates back to the Pratihara period. Durga, ...


Temples of Tamil Nadu - Chidambaram Temple
The Chidambaram temple located at 250 Km to the south of Chennai in Tamil Nadu. It is the most well known saivite temple with main deity as Nataraja enshrined in the Chitsabha or the Hall of Consciousness in the Anand ...


Temples of Tamil Nadu - Madurai Meenakshi Temple
The Madurai Meenakshi Sundareswarar temple is one of the greatest temples of Meenakshi in India. It is also known for its sprawling landscape filled with sculptured halls, pillars and lofty towers with lavish artwork in all forms. Madurai is also ...


Temples of Tamil Nadu - Rameshwara Temple
The Rameshwara temple is one of the holiest shrines of India having one of the twelve Jyotirlingams. It is a huge temple situated in the island of Rameshwaram at about 160 km southeast of Madurai which can be reached through ...


Temples of Tamil Nadu - Palani Temple
The Palani temple is situated in the district of Madurai about 112 km from Madurai and 152 km from Trichi. Lord Murugan called Thandayudapani is the presiding deity of the temple. This temple is on the 450 feet high Palani ...


Major Temples of West Bengal
Temples of West Bengal - Dakshineswar TempleThe Dakshineswar Kali Temple is located alongside the Vivekananda Bridge north of Calcutta. It is believed that Saint Ramakrishna Paramahamsa achieved spiritual vision in this place. This temple is dedicated to goddess Kali. ...

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