A Tale of Two Religions

A Tale of Two Religions

A Tale of Two Religions Throughout the world different nations have different beliefs or religions. Some religions evolve from others and some are a combination of different religions. What starts out as the ideas of one man can become a worldwide phenomenon. Hinduism and Buddhism have many similarities and are connected to each other in various ways. While both religions have some common themes, their differences are what make them individually recognized today. “Hinduism is one of the oldest religions in existence. After Christianity and Islam, it ranks as the world’s third largest religion. Today there are 650 million Hindus worldwide” (Wangu p.6). Although the exact date of the emergence of Hinduism is uncertain, some of its earliest themes and forms arose around the third millennium B.C. Many believe that Hinduism began with the migration of Aryan people into India. These two races combined ideas and started what would become one of the largest and oldest religions known. One of the most important contributions that the Aryan people brought to Hinduism was their oral texts, known as Vedas or for Hindus eternal truths. The Vedas not only provide a guide to life, but also give the creation story. The Vedas can be seen as the pillar of the Hindu religion. “The four Vedas are the oldest of the [shruti] texts and are the primary scriptures of Hinduism. It is difficult to assign exact dates to these writings, because many were compiled gradually, over centuries, through oral tradition. They were written down only long after they had come into existence. One of the four Vedas contains hymns, chants, and praises to the gods. Another Veda serves as a guidebook for rituals and priestly behavior. A third offers information on magic and charms that can be used as blessings or curses, and the fourth gives musical notes to be chanted while performing the rituals. Together, the four Vedas have a deep and lastin…


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