WHAT IS HINDUISM
The real word for Hinduism is ‘Sanatana dharma’. ‘Sanatana’ is that which is permanent in nature and ‘dharma’ is that which holds the society together. It means the code of conduct which holds for all times for social harmony and integration.
Sometimes it is said that Hinduism is not a religion but a way of life. It means that Hinduism is not like other religions. In other religions, there is only one book and one belief system about god, heaven and the devil. Hinduism has a number of belief systems under the umbrella of one single philosophy. Hinduism was not propounded by a single prophet. It did not originate in troubled times.
Hinduism can be explained as under:
Swami Vivekanada, the Hindu monk of India, during his address at world Parliament of religions at Chicago in September, 1893 explained the Hinduism as under:
Swami Chinmayanandaji was a renowned saint. Once, a 'secular' minded journalist, who generally showed Hinduism in poor light, asked a question to Swamiji:
Q: Who is the founder of Islam?
A: Prophet Mohammad.
Q: Who is the founder of Christianity?
A: Jesus Christ.
Q: Who is the founder of Hinduism?
Thinking that Swamiji has no answer, the lady journalist proceeded: There is no founder and hence, Hinduism is not a religion or Dharma at all.
A: Then, Swamiji said: You are right. Hinduism is not a religion. It is a Science.
She did not understand that. Swamiji put some more questions to her.
Q: Who is the founder of Physics?
A: No one person.
Q: Who is the founder of Chemistry?
A: No one person.
Q: Who is the founder of Biology?
A: No single person.
A large number of persons, from time to time, contributed to the wealth of knowledge of any Science.
Hindu Dharma is a Science, developed over the centuries, contributed by saints and sages for giving right direction to the society. Islam has only one book -Quran.
Christianity has only one book -Bible. But for Hinduism, I can take you to a library and show you hundreds of books. Hence, Hinduism is a scientific religion- called Sanatana Dharma.