The Religion of Islam  

Video Categories

Intro E-Books

Guest Book

Recommend Us
| More

The Purpose of Creation (part 3 of 3): The Hindu Tradition

Description: An introduction to the most puzzling question of human history, and a discussion about the sources which can be used to find the answer.  Part 3: A look into the Hindu Scriptures, and a conclusion to the subject.
By Dr. Bilal Philips
Published on 13 Feb 2006 - Last modified on 20 Feb 2006
Viewed: 32035 (daily average: 9) - Rating: 2.5 out of 5 - Rated by: 17
Printed: 1490 - Emailed: 20 - Commented on: 0

Category: Articles > Beliefs of Islam > The Purpose of Life

Everything is God

The Hindu scriptures teach that there are many gods, incarnations of gods, persons of God and that everything is God, Brahman.  In spite of the belief that the self (atman) of all living beings is actually Brahman, an oppressive caste system evolved in which the Brahmans, the priestly caste, possess spiritual supremacy by birth.  They are the teachers of the Vedas and represent the ideal of ritual purity and social prestige.  On the other hand, the Sudra caste are excluded from religious status and their sole duty in life is “to serve meekly” the other three castes and their thousands of subcastes.

According to Hindu monist philosophers, humankind’s purpose is the realization of their divinity and -following a path (marga) to emancipation (moksha) from the wheel of rebirth - the reabsorbtion of the human soul (atman) into the ultimate reality, Brahman.  For those following the bhakti path, the purpose is to love God because God created humankind to “enjoy a relationship - as a father enjoys his children” (Srimad Bhagwatam).  For the ordinary Hindu, the main aim of worldly life lies in conforming to social and ritual duties, to the traditional rules of conduct for one’s caste - the karma path.

Although most of the religion of the Vedic texts, which revolves around rituals of fire sacrifice, has been eclipsed by Hindu doctrines and practices found in other texts, the absolute authority and sacredness of the Veda remains a central tenet of virtually all Hindu sects and traditions.  The Veda is composed of four collections, the oldest of which is the Rigveda (“Wisdom of the Verses”).  In these texts, God is described in the most confusing terms.  The religion reflected in the Rigveda is a polytheism mainly concerned with appeasing deities associated with the sky and the atmosphere, the most important of which were Indra (god of the heavens and rain), Baruna (guardian of the cosmic order), Agni (the sacrificial fire), and Surya (the Sun).  In later Vedic texts, interest in the early Rigvedic gods declines, and polytheism begins to be replaced by a sacrificial pantheism to Prajapati (“Lord of Creatures”), who is the All.  In the Upanishads (secret teachings concerning cosmic equations), Prajapati merges with the concept of Brahman, the supreme reality and substance of the universe, replacing any specific personification, thus transforming the mythology into abstract philosophy.  If the contents of these scriptures were all that human beings had to choose from for guidance, one would have to conclude that God hid both Himself and the purpose of creation from humankind.

God is not the author of confusion, nor does He wish difficulty for mankind.  Consequently, when He revealed His final communication to humankind one thousand four hundred years ago, He ensured that it was perfectly preserved for all of the generations of human beings to come.  In that final scripture, the Quran (Koran), God revealed His purpose for creating mankind and, through His last prophet, He clarified all of the details which man could comprehend.  It is on the basis of this revelation and the prophetic explanations that we [must] analyze the precise answers to the question “Why did God create man?”...


Previous: The Purpose of Creation (part 2 of 3): The Judeo-Christian Answer  
Parts of This Article
The Purpose of Creation (part 1 of 3): An Introduction
The Purpose of Creation (part 2 of 3): The Judeo-Christian Answer
The Purpose of Creation (part 3 of 3): The Hindu Tradition
View all parts together
Article Tools
PoorBest  Rate this article Rate it
Back to top Back to top
Print Print Save this article Save E-mail this article to a friend E-mail PDF Format PDF Format
Add a comment on this article Add a comment View or hide comments on this article View comments (No comments) Add this article to your favorites on this site Site favorites Add this article to Explorer favorites Explorer favorites
| More
Other Articles in the Same Category
Category: Articles > Beliefs of Islam > The Purpose of Life
The Big Questions (part 1 of 3): Who Made Us?
The Big Questions (part 2 of 3): The Purpose of Life
The Big Questions (part 3 of 3): The Need for Revelation
Why Did God Create? (part 1 of 3): God, the Creator
Why Did God Create? (part 2 of 3): Divine Mercy and Justice
Why Did God Create? (part 3 of 3): Divine Love and Grace
The Purpose of Life (part 1 of 3): Reason and Revelation
The Purpose of Life (part 2 of 3): The Islamic Viewpoint
The Purpose of Life (part 3 of 3): The False Gods of Modernity
Why Did God Create Mankind? (part 1 of 4): The Worship of God
Why Did God Create Mankind? (part 2 of 4): The Need to Remember God
Why Did God Create Mankind? (part 3 of 4): Life as Worship
Why Did God Create Mankind? (part 4 of 4): Contradicting the Purpose of Creation
The True Richness (part 1 of 2)
The True Richness (part 2 of 2)
Who are the Strangers?
Videos in the Same Category
Category: Videos > Beliefs of Islam > The Purpose of Life
Purpose of Life
Purpose of Life and Creation
Purpose of Life by Qadhi
Purpose of Life by Yasir Fazaga
Reality of Life
Purpose of Life (part 1 of 3)
Purpose of Life (part 2 of 3)
Submission to God
Why Are We Here?
The Godly Way
Preparing For Death
Purpose of Life (brief version)
Purpose of Life by Yusha Evans
Purpose of Life by Dr. Philips
Why did Allah (God) Create us? 
The Purpose of Life: A Rational Perspective
The Purpose of Life: A Reflection
Why Are We Here and What is Our Purpose of Life
The Purpose of Life
Reflecting on Death
Life's Purpose
Addiction, Stress and Life's Challenges
The Purpose of this Life
Achieving The Goal Of Life

The Religion of Islam Home Page Home Page

Contact Us Contact Us



The article/video you have requested doesn't exist yet.


L'articolo / video che hai richiesto non esiste ancora.

The article/video you have requested doesn't exist yet.

  Live Help by Chat  
Online daily:
From  to 
(according to your computer time)

Remember me
Forgot your password?
No account? Register & Why?

  Most Popular  

  List Articles  

  Your Favorites

Your favorites list is empty.  You may add articles to this list using the article tools.

  Your History

Your history list is empty.

Disable recording my history