Tuesday, July 18, 2017
By Promod Puri,
Editor Progressive Hindu Dialogue
Seeking the divine spirit is a spiritual pursuit. And within that pursuit is the social aspects of the divinity which impact the Hindu mind to develop a personality of goodness.
Divine or divinity relates to all those aspects coming from God or god which are basically understood as heavenly and transcendental. But in social divinity it has attributes of humankind relating to ethical conduct of life toward an ultimate goal of perfection in every possible way.
The praxis of social divinity goes beyond the rituals, customs and beliefs. Also cardinal in Hindu theology is the induction of divinity in thoughts, words and deeds. Hinduism encourages spiritual believability based on knowledge and rationality. And that is where the divine spirit finds acceptable residency in every moment of life.
In creating the divine residency in an individual’s mind Hinduism offers liberal environment guided by disciplined and righteous karma.
Karma is biased by rituals, customs and beliefs. What matters most that karma is also influenced by Hindu epistemology seeking rationality in an action. And when the reasoning is established in all its sincerity Karma develops into prayer. For a practicing Hindu Karma is dharma.
Assembly of good karmas from earnest deeds over a long period can lead to moksha. It is a stage when material satisfactions are not attractions anymore. Rather in austere and ascetic life transcendental consciousness develops toward oneness with the Supreme-being.
The execution of karma in Hindu thought has an impact on the society as well.
Societal reconstruction is part of karmas’ obligations to clean up the religion from discriminatory and inhumane practices. An all inclusive full empowerment of women and annihilation of castes as envisioned by Ambedkar are part of these needed corrections to institute human rights traditions in Hinduism.
Whereas religion started as management of the society, at the personal level religiosity of karma implies management of the self. This governance of the self is conducted by virtue of conscious and divine living.
Consequent to Hinduism’s democratic framework the management of self is what we call as a way of life.
From rituals to murti-puja, mantra and metaphysics, karma and moksha, to meditation and yoga, and all its recreational aspects like music, dance and drama, Hinduism in its management of individual is a disciplinary as well as a comprehensive experience of spiritual development in liberal and progressive regime.
Excerpts form Hinduism Beyond Rituals, Customs And Traditions
Saturday, July 15, 2017
By Promod Puri
“The past is history, future is mystery, but today is a gift……”, stay in the present and enjoy the moments. These are some of the many favored in-vogue quotes.
The popular quotations or advisories suggest our prospects belong to the moments we live in. We are told to live, feel, and enjoy the era of the present, rather than being prisoner of the past or future.
The reality is: our past is an assortment of both joyous, rough, memorable, and learning experiences. Whereas, our future lies in the prospect of imagination.
Imagination is an inspiring concept which is very natural foresight in the life of an individual as well as the society we belong to. Civilizations have been created, nourished, and developed on our ability to contemplate about the future.
No doubt, anxieties, worries or concerns often become parts of our contemplations, but so do the dreams. In this package, destiny is created thru our forward-looking karmas of the present which influence our future. Progress comes by prospecting at the future.
Flights to the future with optimistic imaginations are the thrills and promises of the prospective unknown.
Prospecting is natural. It is a functional activity of our cognitive powers. Sighting the future is both a conscious and unconscious activity. We can’t stop it while realizing, dealing, or playing with the moments of the present.
In these moments, our moods also swing like a pendulum, moving back and forth, from past to future while creating new flashes for the present.
Sometimes, journeys to the past contribute to the pleasures of the present. Past is a treasure like an old photo album. It is an asset and a companion. Ask the person lying on a hospital bed for long time. Or when a fatal blow to the past happens to a person with dementia. Moments of the present do not offer a “gift” here.
Moreover, for the society, past is not merely a history, but it is a heritage as well. The identity of a society is based on its heritage.
Past, present, and future are interlinked, and complimenting to each other with indelible events, experiences, karmas, and imaginations. The act of managing the future involves gathering and distilling the right information from the archives of the past within the time span of the present.
Time does not cover the innate past, or cause a pause to our imaginations for the future. It does not flow like a river. It does not fly either. Time rather spreads out. In this spread, past, present and future reside for ever.
It is our mind which ferry us around for stopovers at our memories, and sojourn us to conceive our imaginations, as well as bringing us back to the present. And the life’s journey continues while sailing through our past, present, and future.
Promod Puri is a journalist and writer. He is author of “Hinduism Beyond Rituals, Customs And Traditions”, a book which explores the rational, secular and progressive nature of Hinduism.
Tuesday, July 11, 2017
Ever wondered why violence and killings most often happen in Kashmir, to be very precise in the Kashmir Valley. Why we seldom hear protests, demonstrations, disturbances and fights from the much more bigger areas of non-Kashmiri speaking Jammu or Ladakh regions of the India-controlled state of Jammu & Kashmir. Or even for that matter any such reports from Pakistan-controlled non-Kashmiri speaking Azad Kashmir. Does only the Kashmir Valley represent the Kashmir Problem. Is it a Kashmir Problem or Kashmiri Problem. Pl. read more in Genesis of Kashmir Problem
Sunday, July 9, 2017
Atheists (e.g. Christopher Hitchens in "The Portable Atheist") deny or disbelieve the existence of a supreme being, not by putting forward their own reasons or facts, but by ridiculing, condemning and even satirising believers who themselves accept and trust absurd, unrealistic, and imaginary explanations about God, and still have firm convictions in Him. progressivehindudialogue.com
"While on the progressive path one can explicitly observe that in our religious places, God’s existence is marred by elaborate rituals and customs which impact and disturb invoking His presence in the prayers and reverence for Him.
Furthermore, our antiquated scriptures are not of much help either in His realisation.
Written in the language(s) of bygone eras, their meaning, and interpretations of the wisdom contained in them are tough to comprehend for most of us at any intellectual, and educational levels. These sacred writings need to be edited and rewritten to conform to the demands and concerns of the contemporary civilization. We seek easy and clear understanding of the scriptural teachings and knowledge with or without the services of priests.
In this age of explosion of intelligent knowledge available through mass media like Google and internet, we can rediscover God who can create righteous thoughts to stimulate righteous deeds in creating a righteous world around us".