www.hindukidsworld.org

Multi Language Web-Mag on Hinduism for the Kids

Slide 1

Kidsworld Club

Hello Kids,

This section will go through the ancient history of Hinduism and its basic concept and the idea of Tri Murties as well.

This will be the basis for your learning of Hinduism.

We advise you to read this section first.

A brief background

Hinduism a Brief Background

Hello Kids,

We have lots to catch up but first let's begin with going through some background information of the ancient history of Hinduism.

We promise to make things simple and NOT boring.

Are you ready.....

About Hinduism

Hinduism is one of the major religions of the world. Approximately 1.4 billion peoples are
following it.

India and Sri Lanka are the countries that can be claimed as the 'native' countries of Hinduism.

'Bharath' (ancient name of India) and Lanka were referred in great Hindu epic like 'Ramayana'. From these two countries Hinduism spread all over the world.

Hinduism never had a known founder and no one knows when it was founded.

This is the major unique feature comparing with any other religions of the world that can be identified with a known founder or a founding period.

Hence Hindus believe that Hinduism was given to them by the GOD himself.

Indus Valley Civilisation

A British Official in India, Charles Massan became highly bored with his job. Having resigned his job, he started a trekking expedition along Afghanistan, Baluchistan areas around 1826.


He discovered the ruins of a city along the left side of 'river ravi', a branch river flowing off from ‘river sindhu (Indus)’ that was and still flowing in current Pakistan.


In his notes he jotted it as 'Harapah' with a 'ruinous brick castle'. This was the first notes of ‘Harapah’.


In 1833, another explorer, Sir Alexander Burns visited the area. He had recorded, what the locals said for the ruins as, the punishment of the God to the King for his cruelty.


In 1850 two Scottish engineers known as Branton brothers (John Branton and Robert Branton) camped in the area to build rail tracks between Karachi and Lahore. On realising that the workers stated using bricks, that were available in abundance in the area of 'Harapah', for the railway works, they disallowed it, possibly because of their assessment that the bricks were of ancient periods.

On their information, the very first official of the newly established 'Indian Archaeological Department', Alexander Cunningam visited the area in the early 1850’s and ensured that the area was officially marked.

After his retirement in 1870 he started his research in the area and published his findings in 'Archaeological Survey of India'.

In which he noted that "The most curious object discovered at Harapah is a seal... above the bull and there is inscription in six characters which are quite unknown to me".


In 1911, D.R Bhandarka carried out research on the ''Mount of the Dead people'', some 400 miles southwest of Harappa. This area later became known as Mohenjo-Daro.


It was Sir John Marshall (1923 – 1934) who used the word ‘Indus Valley Civilisation’ (IVC).

Historians agreed that it existed about 4000 years ago, which means 2600 to 1600 BC. This was the same period as that of Egyptian and Sumerian civilizations.

People of Indus Valley had a highly developed civilisation. They cultivated Barley, Wheat, Sesame and Nuts. They built houses using bricks and windows were used for ventilation. The drinking water was obtained from wells.

Another researcher Dr Mackey observed that IVC was more advanced than that of the Sumerian civilisation in that there were broad roads in use and also well developed underground drainage and sewage system.


Apart from residential houses there were public places as well. Elephant, Bull and Dogs were in IVC. They made and used clay toys for their kids. Copper, Gold and Silver were also in use and ornaments made out of them were also found.

Buildings with same sized baked bricks.
Some village houses in developing countries of modern times have not catch up
with these houses of 4000 years back.

What happened to the peoples lived in that great civilization is a myth that got to be resolved yet.

Were those cities ruined by an earth quake, drought or a great flood?

Some theory suggests that a volcano or an earthquake would have changed the cause of the river indus and as the result the fields around this civilisation became too dry for farming and people either died of famine and starvation or moved elsewhere.

Worshiping at Indus Valley Civilisation

There were no strong evidences found so far, while the archaeological researches are still going on, about the worshiping patterns of the people of Indus valley.

No temple has been discovered yet, though the seals, images and other materials unearthed by archaeologists so far convinced some historians that the people of the Harappa were Hindus.

There was a stone image discovered which is of sacred figure in yogic composition with half shut eyes. This figure was clothed in a rope that was carried over to the left shoulders.


Many Pottery figurines found also suggest female deities had been worshipped by the people of IVC. The arms of these figurines were seemed adorned with bangles.


Further evidences suggest that there were Sakthy, Lord Shiva and his consort were worshipped along with the worshiping of the animals like elephants, bull, tiger and snake.

It had been suggested that the four armed figures found may be that of either Lord Brahma or Lord Vishnu and this corresponds with modern cults in Hinduism. A figure with necklace worn suggesting one of the Hindu deities.


Historians believe that the Hinduism thrived in Indus Valley civilization and as the people moved for various reasons in to the present Indian peninsula and to the island of Sri Lanka from the Indus Valley had also taken the Hinduism along with them.

Hinduism was the only religion at IVC

It is worth remembering that the other major religions of today's world were founded very long later than the period of Indus valley civilization.

So we can safely and proudly conclude that the Hinduism was the ONLY religion practiced by people of IVC.

The Concept

The Basci Concept of Hinduism

Kids,

We have seen some historical information on Hindusim.

Now we move on to see the basic idea..

Hinduism: The Concept

The Hindus believe that there are three important aspects in relation to a living being in this world.

It has to be created (Eg: birth of a human baby)

and once created

it got to be protected from harms

and then

it got to be eliminated (Eg: Death of a human at an old age) so that the life come to an end.

Hence the great GOD has taken there forms to do these three important functions namely Creation, Protection and Destruction.

Three forms of the GOD

Thus Lord Brahma is responsible for the creation of a life (Begining of life: Birth) and the Lord Vishnu is responsible for the protection of that life through its life cycle and Lord Shiva is responsible for the destruction (End of life: Death) of it.

The Creator: Lord Brahma

The Presever: Lord Vishnu

The Destroyer: Lord Shiva

The Creator: Lord Brahma The Presever: Lord Vishnu The Destroyer: Lord Shiva

Why the destroyer is more popular than the creator

It may be astonishing to know that there are not many followers for Lord Brahma, the Creator, comparing to the other two. But it is understandable in that our affairs along with Lord Brahma is over even before we are born.

It is actually believed that depending of the level of sins that we committed in our previous birth, Lord Brahma decides about our life in this birth: Whom we are to be born (rich or poor), Our sex, Our destiny, social status (will we be educated or uneducated) etc.

This implies that there is less or no business with him after our birth and so there would not be many worshippers for Lord Brahma and we will not see many temples for him comparing to the other two.

The Prominent Hindu Subsects

Those who worship Lord Vishnu, the protector, as their first and foremost god are known as ‘Vaishnavas’. The Hindu sub sect of ‘Vaishnavism’ is of these ‘Vaishnavas’. It should be noted that high percentage (nearly 70%) of Hindus in India are in this sect.

A Vaishnavaite devotee who can be identified by the vertical 'Thiru-Mann' mark on the forehead

Those who worship Lord Shiva, the destroyer, as their first and foremost god are known as ‘Saivas’. The Hindu sub sect of ‘Saivism’ is of these ‘Saivas’.

Note that a very high percentage of Hindus in Sri Lanka are 'Saivas'. In the great epic Ramayana, the Lanka's king Ravana was described as a great devotee of Lord Shiva.

The Saivaite devotee who can be identified by the three parallel 'Thiru-neeru' mark on the forehead.

Worshiping Lord Vishnu for our protection is understandable and the high percentage of his worshippers explains this. Yet one might wonder why people want to worship Lord Shiva, the destroyer?

The Important Philosophy

There is an excellent philosophy supporting this concept which you may find out in details in your later lessons. For now we will note that this philosophy based on few important believes in Hinduism.

1. The ‘certainty of death’ of a living being and

2. 'Re-birth’ (reincarnation) of the same soul and that occurs due to the sin committed in the previous birth. This means that we all are here, instead of being near the lotus feet of the great God forever, just because of our earlier sins.

It follows that the level of sins committed in our previous birth, determines how our life is going to be in this birth. (rich or poor, healthy or sick, highly respected in society or a person languishing as a jail bird etc.)

Hence the simple idea is NOT to commit further sins in this life but to pray the Lord to get rid of all sins before death so that there would not be more re births in to this world that is full of troubles.

Thus the reason for the worshiping of Lord Shiva.

Have you checked with the elders in the family to know
who is the first and foremost deity of your family?

* By the way we want to assure you that this website will cater all *