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Hinduism : The Eternal Tradition Sanatana Dharma


Perennial Wisdom 

Sanatana Dharma

Religion And Spirituality...

Religion Or Dharma

The Eternal View Of Hinduism

Idolatary And Dogmatism

Religion And Spirituality..

Religious And Spiritual Practices

Civilization And Social Issues

Hinduism And Sanatana Dharma

Hinduism And Other Religions



Major Sections
Books By David Frawley

Awaken Bharata

From The River Of Heaven How I Became A Hindu
The Myth Of Aryan Invasion Of India

Hinduism : The Eternal Tradition, Sanatana Dharma

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Islam and Sufism

Early Islam had a considerable influence from Hinduism and Buddhism. Hindu traders lived in Mecca and contributed to the culture of the city. The Pre-Islamic religion of Arabia, like the Pre-Christian religions of the Middle East and Europe, was much like the Hindu, using a multiplicity of names and forms for the Divine and not formulated as a belief system. Mecca was a site wherein the Goddess was worshipped and contained 360 icons, much like those used in Hindu temples. The stone at Mecca was an ancient sacred stone much like the Shiva lingas or Shiva stones of Hindu worship.

The first part of India to come under Islamic influence was the province of Sind, by the mouth of the Indus river. Mathematics, astronomy, medicine, and other arts and sciences better developed in India were taken in part back to the Middle East. Hindu Vedantic teachings were taken by the Sufis, the mystics of Islam, who are defined even today by the Dictionary of Islam in India as Muslims following Vedantic ideas.

Afghanistan and Central Asia came under Islamic influence from 700-1000 AD. They were originally regions of Buddhist and Hindu predominance and preserved aspects of these teachings. Even today many Sufis look to this region as their holy land, particularly eastern Afghanistan and its portion of the Himalayas, which links them back further to the greater Himalayan tradition that is more typically yogic in nature. Hence Hinduism has had strongly influence the mystical side of Islam.

However Hinduism and Islam are otherwise almost opposite religions, with Hinduism presenting all the diversity and creativity of the tropical jungle and Islam the stern absolutism of the desert. Islam is more of a social-political movement than a spiritual teaching. Otherwise it would not be so intolerant of yogic traditions like the Hindu (and to its own Sufi tradition) that emphasize the inner quest more than any outer religious identity. Hinduism has more affinity with the Sufis as with Western mystics but finds that they often do not understand the full range of yogic practices or the ultimate truth of Self-realization.


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