Welche Rolle spielen Rituale im Leben eines Hindu? Was bedeuten Wiedergeburt und Erlösung? Welches sind die wichtigsten Texte? Was fasziniert Menschen heute am Hinduismus? Auf diese und viele andere Fragen versucht das neue Arbeitsheft Antworten zu geben. Faszinierend und geheimnisvoll mutet diese Religion an. Dabei ist der Hinduismus nicht nur eine Religion im engeren Sinne, sondern die Lebensweise der Hindus - er umfasst alle Bereiche ihrer persönlichen und gesellschaftlichen Existenz. Die bewährte Reihe Thema Weltreligionen wurde inhaltlich aktualisiert und didaktisch überarbeitet: Religionskundlicher Kompetenzerwerb steht im Zentrum der neuen Aufgabenstruktur, die sich an den EPA Ethik und aktuellen Bildungsstandards orientiert. Eine Trainings-CD mit Klausurvorbereitungen und vielen methodischen Anregungen unterstützt die Selbstständigkeit der Lernenden.´´
By day, bathed in the hot rays of the sun, its tall minaret-like outline looks like a block of ice against the blue sky. By night, with the aid of the intense, phosphorescent moonlight proper to India, it is still more dazzling and poetical. The summit looks as if it were covered with freshly fallen snow-crystals. Raising its slender profile above the dark background of bushes, it suggests some pure midnight apparition, soaring over this silent abode of destruction and lamenting what will never return. Side by side with these cemeteries rise the Hindu ghats, generally by the river bank. There really is something grand in the ritual of burning the dead. Witnessing this ceremony the spectator is struck with the deep philosophy underlying the fundamental idea of this custom. In the course of an hour nothing remains of the body but a few handfuls of ashes. A professional Brahman, like a priest of death, scatters these ashes to the winds over a river. The ashes of what once lived and felt, loved and hated, rejoiced and wept, are thus given back again to the four elements: to Earth, which fed it during such a long time and out of which it grew and developed; to Fire, emblem of purity, that has just devoured the body in order that the spirit may be rid of everything impure, and may freely gravitate to the new sphere of posthumous existence, where every sin is a stumbling block on the way to ´´Moksha,´´ or infinite bliss; to Air, which it inhaled and through which it lived, and to Water, which purified it physically and spiritually, and is now to receive its ashes into her pure bosom.
The best known of the Tantric scriptures. It was translated by Sir John Woodruffe (under the pseudonym ´Arthur Avalon´), one of the few Indologists to gain direct access to this obscure and secretive branch of Hinduism. Framed as a conversation between the god Shiva and goddess Shaki, this text describes the chakra, or subtle energy structure of the human body, ceremonies, yogic practices and mantras for meditation, and a summary of the Hindu laws (dharma) regarding sexual behavior. THE Indian Tantras, which are numerous, constitute the Scripture (Shastra) of the Kaliyuga, and as such are the voluminous source of present and practical orthodox ´´Hinduism.´´ The Tantra Shastra is, in fact, and whatever be its historical origin, a development of the Vaidika Karmakanda, promulgated to meet the needs of that age. Shiva says: ´´For the benefit of men of the Kali age, men bereft of energy and dependent for existence on the food they eat, the Kaula doctrine, O auspicious one! is given´´. To the Tantra we must therefore look if we would understand aright both ritual, yoga, and sadhana of all kinds, as also the general principles of which these practices are but the objective expression.