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Hinduism For Dummies

ISBN: 978-0-470-87858-3
388 pages
July 2011
Hinduism For Dummies (0470878584) cover image
Your hands-on guide to one of the world's major religions

The dominant religion of India, "Hinduism" refers to a wide variety of religious traditions and philosophies that have developed over thousands of years. Today, the United States is home to approximately one million Hindus.

If you've heard of this ancient religion and are looking for a reference that explains the intricacies of the customs, practices, and teachings of this ancient spiritual system, Hinduism For Dummies is for you!

  • Provides a thorough introduction to this earliest and popular world belief system
  • Information on the rites, rituals, deities, and teachings associated with the practice of Hinduism
  • Explores the history and teachings of the Vedas, Brahmans, and Upanishads
  • Offers insight into the modern daily practice of Hinduism around the world

Continuing the Dummies tradition of making the world's religions engaging and accessible to everyone, Hinduism For Dummies is your hands-on, friendly guide to this fascinating religion.

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Introduction.

Part I: Introducing Hinduism.

Chapter 1: A Quick Overview of Hinduism.

Chapter 2: From Past to Present: A Condensed History of Hinduism.

Chapter 3: Hinduism’s Core Beliefs and Values.

Chapter 4: Major Hindu Denominations.

Chapter 5: The Structure of Hindu Society.

Part II: The Hindu Pantheon and Its Religious Leaders.

Chapter 6: Pantheism to Polytheism: From the One to the Very Many.

Chapter 7: Hindu Gods and Goddesses.

Chapter 8: The Avatars of Vishnu: The Divine Descent.

Chapter 9: Revering the Role of Religious Leadership.

Part III: The Sacred Texts.

Chapter 10: The Vedas: Centuries of Accumulated Treasures.

Chapter 11: Gaining Higher Knowledge with the Upanishads.

Chapter 12: Living with the Epics and Puranas.

Chapter 13: The Song of the Lord: The Bhagavad Gita.

Part IV: Hinduism in Practice.

Chapter 14: Worshipping at Home.

Chapter 15: Worshipping at Temples.

Chapter 16: Holydays and Festivals.

Chapter 17: Cradle to Cremation: The Life-Cycle Rites.

Chapter 18: Taking a Pilgrimage.

Part V: Delving Deeper into the Hindu Concept of Reality.

Chapter 19: The Six Schools of Thought: The Darshanas.

Chapter 20: Vedanta: The End of Knowledge.

Chapter 21: The Yogic Path to Salvation.

Part VI: The Part of Tens.

Chapter 22: Ten Common Questions About Hindus.

Chapter 23: Ten Common Prayers.

Chapter 24: Ten (Plus) Traditional Mandates.

Index.

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Dr. Amrutur V. Srinivasan, born in India, is primary founder and first president of the Connecticut Valley Hindu Temple Society. He has functioned as a Hindu priest performing a wide variety of pujas (worships), weddings, and other ceremonies since 1971.
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February 29, 2012
Hinduism For Dummies®

The dominant religion of India, "Hinduism" refers to a wide variety of religious traditions and philosophies that have developed over thousands of years. Exploring the traditions, practices, scripture, and deities of the religion, Hinduism For Dummies® (Wiley, 978-0-470-87858-3, July 2011) provides a thorough introduction to the world's third largest religion. From similarities and differences among Hinduism's four sects -- Vaishnavism, Shaivism, Shaktism, and Smartism -- to an exploration of key tenets and beliefs, the book continues the Dummies tradition of making the world's religions engaging and accessible to readers.

Hinduism For Dummies: 

  • Provides information on the rites, rituals, deities, and teachings associated with the practice of Hinduism
  • Explores the history and teachings of the Vedas, Brahmans, and Upanishads
  • Offers insight into the modern daily practice of Hinduism around the world

It is suitable for everyone – for readers looking for a straight introduction to this influential religion and those who have been exposed to the popular subjects of yoga, meditation, and ayurveda and want to learn more about their Hindu roots.

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