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Old 06-13-2011, 02:29 AM
 
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First of all i would like to say that I am atheist. I am also Hindu. People get confused when i tell them this and say that how can i be both Hindu and atheist when Hindus worship hundreds of Gods and Goddesses when atheism worships none. This may get complicated so please bear with me. Hinduism is more of a way of life than a religion, it promotes non violence, vegetarianism, and other moral beliefs, in fact, it itself states that the so called idols are there for symbolism not literal worship, although most Hindus do not understand this because of the way they were raised. Hinduism is a care free religion in a way, it states that religion is like a mountain, there are many paths to get to the top, some are bumpy, some are long, some are steep, but they all lead to one destination, every single one of them. Don't get me wrong ignorance is not a bad thing, it is pure and simply, a lack of knowledge. Everyone is ignorant to a certain extent.
~Kevin
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:14 PM
Status: "Slow is smooth. Smooth is fast." (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Østenfor sol og vestenfor måne
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I get that. It is similar for many people who follow the indigenous European religions. It is more of a worldview and a folkway with an attached religion than a religion for religion's sake.

For that matter, a lot of people who claim to be Catholic Christians are the same way.
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:19 AM
 
Location: Metromess
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My understanding is that the 'idols' are not there for literal worship, but the gods they represent are real gods. It is possible to be an atheist Buddhist, but I don't think that works so well with Hinduism unless you change it considerably.
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Old 06-14-2011, 12:41 PM
Status: "Slow is smooth. Smooth is fast." (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Østenfor sol og vestenfor måne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
My understanding is that the 'idols' are not there for literal worship, but the gods they represent are real gods. It is possible to be an atheist Buddhist, but I don't think that works so well with Hinduism unless you change it considerably.
Does a god need to exist independent of the human mind to be considered extant?

I think a lot of people who would be considered religious do not believe that their gods are anything more than a product of the collective consciousness of the co-religionists. And that is a real thing indeed.

It is certainly a feature of the Abrahamic religions that Jehovah is a living (immortal), breathing (spirit), conscious entity floating around in space or another dimension or whatever. Whether that applies to other religions is up to their adherents to decide, either personally or for their group.

<note: I am not specifically saying this is true for Hindus, just that beliefs as to the literal existence of gods may vary from culture to culture. The Abrahamist beliefs can not be used as a template for all religions.>
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Old 06-15-2011, 04:22 PM
 
Location: Golden, CO
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One thing that concerns me about Hinduism is the caste system in which some humans are considered to be lower than other humans. Every person must know their place in the caste system and not try to move up in society, at least not during this life.

As a westerner, I was taught to think that all people are equal no matter where or how they grew up. I also support the idea that a person can change their socio-economic status during this life. A person can start out as a maid and work their way up to a CEO of a major company or become president. I think we should treat all people as equals.

It seems strange to me how a religion that respects every living creature, in part, because they could be reincarnated into people, can support a social structure that treats some people as lower than others.
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:11 PM
 
Location: Metromess
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQConvict View Post
Does a god need to exist independent of the human mind to be considered extant?
Yes, I'd say so. Otherwise, it's just a thought/belief in one's mind. If that constitutes a definition of existence so be it, but I don't agree with it. If that is true, then by extension every thought one has is 'extant'. Every thought in a dream would be real, not only to the person having it but to everyone else. Obviously that is not so. We all, in a manner of speaking, have our own versions of 'reality', but that is taking it too far.

In other words, there are no gods. The 'collective consciousness' you refer to only consists of a shared dream, which makes it no more real. That 'product' is intangible in itself, although the actions it may provoke in those sharing it are real.
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:58 PM
Status: "Slow is smooth. Smooth is fast." (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Østenfor sol og vestenfor måne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
Yes, I'd say so. Otherwise, it's just a thought/belief in one's mind. If that constitutes a definition of existence so be it, but I don't agree with it.
Does my grandfather not exist because he died long ago and has no significant material remains?

Do immaterial concepts (love, honor) not exist because they cannot be touched or transferred?

To me, Thor exists as much as any of those things even though I do not believe there is red bearded man driving a wagon pulled by a pair of goats through the sky making thunder.

Jesus exists even though he died about 2,000 years ago. A billion people talk about him and think about him every day.

Harry Potter exists. He is not a living human being, he is a literary character, but he exists.

etc.

etc.
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Old 06-17-2011, 07:16 AM
 
Location: Michigan--good on the rocks
2,544 posts, read 3,823,186 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
My understanding is that the 'idols' are not there for literal worship, but the gods they represent are real gods. It is possible to be an atheist Buddhist, but I don't think that works so well with Hinduism unless you change it considerably.
It's my understanding that the physical devas; Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, and their various incarnations are all manifestations of the overlying spirit Brahman. They are not the true creative and destructive force, they are only the physical representations. In fact, the spirits of we humans are ultimately indistinguishable from Brahman. So while there are many gods, Hinduism is at its deepest essence a monotheistic religion. Some may disagree.

It would seem contradictory to be Hindu and Atheist simultaneously, but there are Hindu atheists, who view Hinduism more as a way of life than as a religion. Again I may not have this exactly right.
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Old 06-17-2011, 01:05 PM
Status: "Slow is smooth. Smooth is fast." (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Østenfor sol og vestenfor måne
17,355 posts, read 20,053,557 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanman13 View Post
So while there are many gods, Hinduism is at its deepest essence a monotheistic religion. Some may disagree.
Indeed. Or Monistic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stanman13 View Post
but there are Hindu atheists, who view Hinduism more as a way of life than as a religion. Again I may not have this exactly right.
That is how I see it. There are parallels in many culture-religions, the most obvious in the American paradigm being unobservant Jews and Catholics who participate in their religio/cultural traditions and identify themselves (and are identified) as part of the cultural community but spurn the 'belief' or 'faith' aspect of the supernatural component of said culture.
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Old 06-17-2011, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Wherever women are
19,011 posts, read 26,946,564 times
Reputation: 11309
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaloBabo View Post
First of all i would like to say that I am atheist. I am also Hindu. People get confused when i tell them this and say that how can i be both Hindu and atheist when Hindus worship hundreds of Gods and Goddesses when atheism worships none. This may get complicated so please bear with me. Hinduism is more of a way of life than a religion, it promotes non violence, vegetarianism, and other moral beliefs, in fact, it itself states that the so called idols are there for symbolism not literal worship, although most Hindus do not understand this because of the way they were raised. Hinduism is a care free religion in a way, it states that religion is like a mountain, there are many paths to get to the top, some are bumpy, some are long, some are steep, but they all lead to one destination, every single one of them. Don't get me wrong ignorance is not a bad thing, it is pure and simply, a lack of knowledge. Everyone is ignorant to a certain extent.
~Kevin
I'll take a Krishna seriously over a phony Kevin any given day
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