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Judaism and Hinduism - Research Paper Example

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This paper helps to discuss the various details, rituals, characteristics etc of both Judaism and Hinduism and aims to locate the similarities and differences between the two as well. Judaism is said to be the modern religious philosophy and the way of life that the Jewish people follow. This form of religion has been said to arise from the Hebrew Bible and helps to depict the relationship that God had developed with the children of Israel, the original Jews. It has been established for over 3000 years now and the texts or scriptures of the religion have been greatly influenced by Abrahamic religions that include Christianity, Islam as well as the Baha’i faith. The Torah is the authoritative scripture that is made use of while referring to, understanding and learning about the religion of Judaism. Hinduism on the other hand is the main religion that is followed in the Indian subcontinent and its followers follow the Sanatana Dharma which basically constitutes the eternal law. It has been known to be one of the oldest living religions known to mankind, formulated during the Vedic period during the Iron Age in India. Most Hindus engage in several rituals throughout the course of the year, both at home as well as at the temples. The most devout Hindus perform actions like waking up early to pray to the Sun god as well as worshipping the shrine that they have in their homes. They usually offer incense and food to the Gods as well while reciting hymns from religious scriptures and texts as well as sing and meditate with the help of devotional hymns, dedicated to God. Whenever there is an auspicious occasion in a Hindu household, like a marriage, birth of a baby, as well as death, rituals are followed in order to ensure that God is viewed as sacred despite the kind of adversities and joys that a human being might undergo during the course of his lifetime. Hindus chant a variety of mantras as well as undertake religious customs and rituals with great pride and devotion. For example, when upper caste children reach the age to begin with formal education, they have to undergo the sacred thread ceremony which is also known as the “Upanayanam”. Another ritual that is followed and is customary in all Hindu households is covering the body of a dead person with a white cloth, worshipping it as well as performing a ‘puja’ or a sacrifice to God and then burning the body on a funeral pyre and cremating it. Judaism is a faith that does not have as many rituals as Hinduism. However, Jews do follow a number of rituals like performing a bar mitzvah, havdalah etc. A bar mitzvah marks the coming of age of a Jewish child. When he or she reaches puberty, the family and friends conduct a bar mitzvah where the child then undertakes his journey into the rest of his life and is referred to as an adult in the religion. He receives money and gifts from his family and friends in order to embark upon the second chapter of his life. A havdalah on the other hand is a ceremony that is performed by most Jews around the world in a compulsory manner. According to this ritual, a brief ceremony takes place which marks the end of the Sabbath. It is a very short and simple procedure and mostly entails and provides emphasis on the spiritual aspect of a human being rather than a physical entity of God. Hinduism and Judaism share a number of similarities between each other however, also have a ...Show more
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Summary

Name 24 July 2011 Assignment Religion is a very important walk of life for most people as they spend their lives living by the rules and faith of the religious path that they follow. There are a few major religions in the world that have been able to establish themselves vastly over most of the population; they are Judaism and Hinduism and have a large following world over…
Judaism and Hinduism
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