Does Hinduism fall under Pantheism.
David R. Israel
davidi at mail.wizard.net
Tue Aug 5 01:37:52 UTC 1997
> Can someone clarify whether Hinduism is a Pantheistic religion.
> Why? Why not? Would appreciate any help.
no doubt one must define both "Hinduism" and "Pantheism" to do the
subject justice (i.e., whose Hinduism? & whose Pantheism?) --
but -- promsing to be brief! -- perhaps the assembled scholars will
look indulgently on an impromptu "general understanding of this
stuff" manner of reply? --
Pantheism, I think, usually denotes (mainly) the presence of divinity
(or, divinities) in all (hence, pan) embodied forms -- particularly,
in the living forms of the manifest world -- trees, animals -- as well
stones, stars, clouds -- in short, the universe --
Hinduism, by most reckonings, recognizes what might be called "both
the manifest and unmanifest aspects of God" -- therefore, I'd say
Hinduism both includes & transcends Pantheism. -- will allowing that
there may be Hinduisms which are equivalent to (the thus-defined
Panthesim), just as there might be Pantheisms that reach to the level
of the (thus-suggested) Hinduism. Does that clarify?
Meher Baba's Parvardigar Prayer -- while certainly syncretic
in its lexicon & approach (especially, combining terms / categories /
etc. of Hinduism, Sufism, and Zoroastrianism) -- has many lines
rouching upon this business of the iminent & transcendent -- that is,
it brings into focus what, in my view, is indeed present in Hinduism
qua Hinduism (at least, certainly, the Hinduism of Ramakrishna, say)
Here are a few (from memory -- ergo punctuation & capitalization [at
least] may likely be somewhat awry) -- from said prayer:
. . . . You are without beginning and without end, non-dual, beyond
comparisoon, and none can measure you.
You are without color, without expression, without form, and without
You are unlimited and unfathomable, beyond imagination and
conception, eteranal and imperishable.
You are indivisible and none can see you but with eyes divine.
You always were you always are and you always will be.
You are everywhere, you are in everything, and you are also beyond
everywhere and beyond everything.
You are in the firmament and in the depths, you are manifest and
unmanifest, on all planes and beyond all planes.
You are in the three worlds and also beyond the three worlds.
You are imperceiptible and independent . . .
/ / / /
wonderful passages are found in the Gospel of Ramakrishna addressing
questions generally cognate to this "panthism?" matter -- one could
open the volume most anywhere, but certainly in the initial pages,
where that great Hindu master chides his new student for taking a
disparaging view of the stone-worshipping (pantheistic) aspects of
devotional faith . . .
this ia a large topic, and I've exceeded my promised pinch. The
leraned can more usefully (re)cite chapter & verse of Shankara or
Upanishads or for that matter the Gita, etc., on these themes.
Consider the passage where Krishna reels out the spool of who-all he
is. Both in the forms of the world (pantheism) and beyond them
(transcendentalism) -- if one cares to view that list w/ such a
"dualism" (or bifurcation) in mind . . .
> david raphael israel <
>> washington d.c. <<
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