Are You a Hindu?
I have studied various
teachings originating in the Hindu tradition for over twenty years
including Yoga, Vedanta, the Vedas, Ayurveda, and Vedic astrology
and found immense benefit in all of them. I have also practiced
these teachings and made them the basis of my spiritual life.
Hinduism was something I discovered in myself through the pattern of
my deeper aspirations and my search into the nature of consciousness
itself. It was never imposed upon me from the outside. I did not
become a Hindu so much as discover that I already was one.
I am happy to belong to this
ancient and unending tradition of spiritual knowledge, whose
impressions upon the soul cannot be removed even by death. Hinduism
has a rich field of knowledge and culture, like the lap of the
Divine Mother, in which the soul can freely unfold its infinite
capacities. To enter into this teaching is a great blessing to all.
Yet becoming a Hindu is not
a matter of taking on some divisive identity. It means recognizing
Sanatana Dharma or the universal tradition. It does not require
joining a church but recognizing the universal religion that comes
from the Self of all. It is to embrace all human aspiration and all
that has beauty in life, but centered on a path of Self-realization,
not merely vaguely accepting everything as good.
However, I am sad that many
Hindus today have little real appreciation or understanding of their
tradition. To me it is a sign of ignorance to abandon such a
profound spiritual system for modern political ideologies, like
socialism and communism, to pursue material affluence, or to
spiritually cripple oneself by following regressive religions
traditions which are devoid of any real way for developing higher
consciousness. Expressing the value of Hinduism as a Westerner, I
hope I can get modern Hindus to reexamine their roots.