Friday, June 14

Why Hinduism is the Most Beautiful Religion in the World

There are various reasons why Hinduism is considered the most beautiful religion in the world by many. In this article, we shall discuss some interesting facts about Hinduism — the oldest religion, in detail. We shall also talk about the reasons for which it is called the world’s no 1 beautiful religion. Let’s find out why Hinduism is the most beautiful religion in the world.

Why Hinduism is the most beautiful religion in the world
10 Reasons Why Hinduism is the best religion in the world

With approximately 1.40 billion adherents, Hinduism is the third largest religion in the world. This is approximately 15-16% of the global population. Although there are just three Hindu-majority countries (India, Nepal, and Mauritius), the impact of this religion can be felt in every corner of the planet. The Indian diaspora scattered across the globe has contributed hugely to promoting the principles of Hinduism worldwide. Wherever Hindus have gone or settled, they have carried their rich heritage and spiritual knowledge with them and tasted success.

According to Pew Research Center, Hindus are the second wealthiest and the most educated religious group in the United States. This is one of the reasons why scholars consider Hinduism the most beautiful religion in the world. Lakhs of people from various parts of the world have been visiting various Hindu temples in India and Nepal to get acquainted with the beauty of the country’s tradition for many centuries. The philosophies and principles of the most beautiful religion in the world have been attracting a lot of them, a major reason behind Hinduism’s tremendous growth across the globe, especially in the west.

Yoga and Ayurveda have played a huge role in promoting the Hindu ideology and making it the most beautiful religion in the world.  B.K.S. Iyengar and K. Pattabhi Jois are credited for popularizing Hatha Yoga in western nations. Some of the modern-world prominent names who have accepted Hinduism in the west are Julia Roberts (Hollywood Actress), Tulsi Gabbard (US Congresswoman), Kim Bradley (Australian surfer), etc.

हिंदी में पढ़ें: हिंदू धर्म दुनिया का सबसे अच्छा धर्म क्यों है?

In this article, we are presenting some of the reasons why Hinduism can be called the most beautiful religion in the world. These points are based on multiple conversations with people following different faiths who believe that Hinduism is the world no 1 beautiful religion.

10 Reasons Why Hinduism is the World’s No 1 Beautiful Religion

1. Diversity of Hinduism Makes it the Most Beautiful Religion in the World

Diversity within Hinduism makes it the best religion in the world
Diversity within Hinduism makes it the best religion in the world

No religion in the world is as diverse as Hinduism is. When we relate the Hindu religion with diversity, the first thing that comes to mind is its idea of polytheism — the belief in many gods. There are thousands of deities in Hinduism such as Shiva, Lakshmi, Vishnu, Durga, Ganesha, etc. Its various denominations are based on different principles that offer adherents to choose whatever they like to believe in and whichever gods/goddesses they want to worship. For example, Lord Vishnu and Shiva are the central figures in Vaishnavism and Shaivism, while the followers of Shaktism believe in the idea of Goddess Durga being the principal source of power.

In addition, one finds various ways of Hindu worship in different parts of India and across the world. The celebration of a festival also varies from region to region. Even there is no single sacred book in Hinduism. Apart from Vedas, Upanishads, and Puranas, Ramcharitmanas, Devi Mahatmaya, Bhagawad Gita, Shivmahapuran, etc. are major sacred Hindu texts.

Major Hindu denominations and their presence in India and the world

Denominations Supreme Deity (Deities)Regions Dominant
Vaishnavism Vishnu, Krishna, RamPan India, Nepal
ShaktismDurga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, ParvatiPan India, Nepal
Shaivism Shiva, Kal BhairavPan India, Nepal
SuryaismSurya & Chhathi MaiyaBihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh & Nepal
KaumaramKartikeyaTamil Nadu & Malaysia
ShrautismVedasKerala & Andhra Pradesh
Balinese HinduismAcintya (Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa)Indonesia
SmartismPanchadevata: Shiva, Vishnu, Devi, Surya & Ishta Devata Karnataka

Also Read: 5 Places to visit near Vaishno Devi, Katra

2. Hinduism has Influenced Multiple Scientists

Despite science and religion normally not going together, Hinduism has found enough voice among the scientific community. From Albert Einstein to Neils Bohr, various scientists have either got inspiration from or mentioned Hindu philosophies during their journey to greatness. The father of the atomic bomb, Robert Oppenheimer was highly influenced by the Sanskrit language, Hindu philosophies, and texts. “Access to the Vedas is the greatest privilege this century may claim over all previous centuries.”

The way Hinduism has influenced science makes it the best religion in the world.

Astronomer and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Carl Sagan, in his 1980 popular science book — Cosmos, wrote, “The Hindu religion is the only one of the world’s great faiths dedicated to the idea that the Cosmos itself undergoes an immense, indeed an infinite, number of deaths and rebirths.
It is the only religion in which the time scales correspond to those of modern scientific cosmology. Its cycles run from our ordinary day and night to a day and night of Brahma, 8.64 billion years long. Longer than the age of the Earth or the Sun and about half the time since the Big Bang.”

Nobel Prize-winning physicist, Erwin Schrödinger was also highly influenced by the Hindu texts. He developed various fundamental results in quantum theory during his lifetime. The Irish scientist once said, “Most of my ideas and theories are heavily influenced by Vedanta.”

On multiple occasions, eminent scientists have mentioned the role of the Hindu philosophies in their works. This is also one of the reasons why people say Hinduism is the most beautiful religion in the world.

3. Hinduism is the Oldest Religion in the World

Hinduism has been called the oldest religion in the world. Also known as the Sanatan Dharma (the Eternal Dharma), the Indian religion is believed to draw its origin even before human history. However, several historians claim that it was established somewhere between 2300 BC and 1500 BC in the Indus Valley. Another beautiful thing about the Sanatan Dharma is unlike other religions, it has no single founder. It is instead an amalgamation of different beliefs and philosophies.

Hinduism is the oldest religion in the world
Hinduism is the oldest and the most beautiful religion in the world

4. Nature Worship Makes Hinduism Unique

Various Hindu texts refer to nature as “Mother”. Hindus believe that all objects in nature are sacred because they are part of the god. Nature worship can be found in many parts of India and is quite popular in the present times as well. Probably the best example can be found in the celebration of Chhath Puja, which is primarily prevalent in Nepal and the Eastern Indian states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, etc. Surya Bhagwan (the Sun God) along with Chhathi Maiya is worshipped in this festival. Various temples in Bihar are dedicated to Surya Bhagwan. In South India, Sri Lanka, and Malaysia, Pongal is widely celebrated, thanking the Sun God for agriculture abundance.

Various rivers are worshipped as goddesses in India, such as the Ganges, Kaveri, Godavari, Yamuna, etc. Even animals are worshipped in Hinduism either as deities or their vahanas (rides). Some of the animal deities are Hanuman (the monkey god), Jambavant (the divine-king of bears), Ganesha (the elephant god), etc. Hinduism considers every entity in the universe sacred, even the smallest pebbles on the ground. Maybe this is why Idol worship is prevalent in this religion. Here is the list of several nature deities in Hinduism and their names in Sanskrit:

Chhath Puja is the biggest representation of Hinduism's philosophy of nature worship, making it the most beautiful religion in the world.
Chhath Puja is the biggest representation of Hinduism’s philosophy of nature worship, making it the most beautiful religion in the world.
Prithvi Mata/Bhudevi/Vasundhara Mother Earth
Agni DevGod of Fire
VarunaGod of Oceans
VayuGod of Wind
Indra DevataGod of Rain, Thunders & Lightning
AranyaniGoddess of the Forests
Ganga MaiyaMother Ganges
Himavat/ParvateshwaraLord of Mountains (Personification of the Himalayas)
YakshiniTree Deity
Nature worship is one of the reasons why Hinduism is considered the world no 1 religion

5. Hinduism Has Been a Peace-loving Religion

Since religious beliefs are quite emotional and rooted in one’s feelings, people generally don’t accept criticisms. Throughout the course of history, we have seen battles and wars fought between sides to prove each other’s religion superior. From the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa to the Ottoman wars in Europe and from the Abyssinian–Adal war to the Arab-Israeli war, history books are full of religious conflicts. Hinduism has rarely been a part of any of those. That’s the beauty of this faith that Indians and Hindus around the world are proud of.

Hindu religious forces have hardly attacked anyone, although India has seen several attacks from different religious empires and armies. Thousands of Hindu temples were destroyed and millions of people were forcibly converted to Islam and Christianity during multiple invasions by foreign empires such as Mahmud of Ghazni, Muhammad Ghori, Babur, Aurangzeb, Britishers, etc. Despite that, no prominent Hindu religious figure has ever promoted enmity in society. From Chakradhar Swami to Swami Vivekanand and from Dayanand Saraswati to Mahatma Gandhi, Hinduism is proud to have produced several religious leaders who have contributed to communal harmony and world peace.

6. Hinduism is the Most Tolerant Religion

Thoughts of Peace and Tolerance by Vivekananda maks Hinduism the best religion in the world
Thoughts of Peace and Tolerance by Vivekananda makes Hinduism the best religion in the world

Tolerance and religious beliefs don’t generally go hand in hand. However, Hinduism has been a major exception in this regard. Hardly have we seen any Hindu sacred text questioning the existence of a different faith. Rigveda says, Ekam Sath Viprah Bahudha Vadanti (“The truth/god is One, but sages call it by different names”).

Swami Vivekanand, one of the greatest Hindu monks of the 19th century, says, “I am a Hindu, I am proud to belong to a religion which has taught the world both tolerance and universal acceptance. We believe not only in universal toleration, but we accept all religions as true.” India followed the same principle of religious unity and chose to be a secular nation despite the division on religious lines. Traditionally, Hindus’ way of showing intolerance towards others has been limited to withdrawing contact with them, instead of using violence.

In his book titled “Who are the Jews of India?”, Nathan Katz mentions that India is probably the only country where persecution of Jews didn’t happen. Hindus have co-existed with Christians and Jews for centuries in India. It was only after the brutal invasions by Islamic rulers on their faith, a section of Hindus started retaliating. Coming to the era of India’s war of independence, Hindus and Muslims together fought against the Britishers for a long time. When the All India Muslim League raised their demand for the partition of India, almost all major Hindu freedom activists opposed this and gave their support for a pluralistic country — which India went on to become.

7. Hinduism also Accepts Atheism

One of the major factors that make Hinduism unique and the most beautiful religion in the world is its acceptability of atheism. Along with Buddhism and Jainism, it is the only major faith where atheism is a valid form of belief. This theory is derived from the fact that Hinduism is a way of life and not merely a set of beliefs. A person can be a Hindu despite rejecting the existence and authority of God. Such people are called Nastika in Sanskrit.

Various Hindu texts such as Isha Upanishad, Chandogya Upanishad, etc. have often been interpreted as atheistic, thanks to their emphasis on the subjective self and not the supreme one. In addition, the concept of Karma makes the argument of the existence of God as the universal administrator of morality redundant.

8. Hinduism is a Gender-neutral Religion

Hinduism is the best religion in the world because it is gender-neutral
Hinduism is the best religion in the world because it is gender-neutral

One significant idea that separates Hindu philosophy from other religions is its gender-neutrality. Hinduism is probably the only living faith that worships feminity. According to Rigveda, feminine energy, which is eternal and infinite, is the essence of the universe. It is the creator of all matter and consciousness, the abstract and empirical reality, and the soul of everything. From Diwali to Durga Puja, various Hindu festivals are dedicated to goddesses. Some of the prominent Hindu female deities are Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Parvati, Radha, Vaishno Devi, etc. This unique element of goddess worship is a great contributor to making Hinduism the most beautiful religion in the world.

Although the current Indian society is not as gender-equal as the western world is, it has hardly anything to do with Hinduism’s core principles. Scholars state that various social edictions came to Indian society with the socio-political development after the 2nd millennium CE. However, the modern Hindu population is learning a lot from its mistakes and is on the mission of bringing the old Sanatan Dharma’s principle of gender equality.

9. Gods are Part of Society in Hinduism

In Hinduism, gods and goddesses are not just supreme beings or moral authorities. They are very much part of society and culture. They are one of us. They exist in the form of someone’s father, mother, son, daughter, sister, brother, etc. In the region of Brajbhoomi, Radha is culturally accepted as the daughter of every household and Krishna as the son. During Navratri, little girls, being the personification of Maa Durga and her sisters, are worshipped and offered gifts. An ideal man in society is often compared with Lord Ram. Every son/daughter is expected to be as obedient towards his/her parents as Kartikeya (Shiva’s son) was.

Hinduism is culturally rooted in Indians for which they claim it the best religion in the world
Hinduism is culturally rooted in Indians who claim it the most beautiful religion in the world (PTI)

One of the unique traits of Indians is that they find their gods/goddesses from within the society. Sai Baba of Shirdi, Guru Nanak Dev, and Mahatma Buddha are among the prime examples. This makes the Hindu religion the most beautiful religion in the world.

10. Hinduism is Liberal, Teaches Acceptance

Hinduism has always carried the idea of acceptance as its idiosyncrasy. Rigveda says, Aano Bhadra Krtavo Yantu Vishwatah, meaning “Let all the noble thoughts come from all directions”. Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, one of the most basic principles of Hinduism, means The World is One Family. Hinduism doesn’t reject the existence of other faiths, since it believes in many ways to salvation. It has been quite liberal about including good thoughts from everywhere. That is why you see Hindus’ ways of festival celebration evolving over the years. Most Hindu temples are open to everybody. Debates and discussions have been central to the Hindu culture for millenniums, making it the best religion in the world.

These are the 10 facts on the basis of which I think Hinduism is the most beautiful religion in the world. However, that doesn’t mean that other religions are inferior. I believe in religious harmony and have huge respect for all faiths, their followers, and their beliefs. In this article, I have just put my arguments in support of Hinduism being the world’s no 1 beautiful religion. You can choose to agree or disagree with my points, I will value that. Whatever your opinion is, do let me know in the comment box below.

Keep visiting The Ganga Times for such beautiful articles. Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for regular updates.

%d bloggers like this: