Monday, May 24, 2010

Religion in India

Religion is an integral part of the entire Indian custom. India is well-known as the land of spirituality and religion plays a significant role in every Indians life. In India, religion is considered to be extremely important. India is also the birthplace of two major religions of the world, Hinduism and Buddhism and home of an ancient religion Jainism. The Constitution of India gives right to Indians to choose and worship freely any religion. In India, various religions followers live such as Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Buddhism etc. Hinduism is the dominant belief, practiced by over 80% of the population. Buddhism and Jainism had a major influence on Indian art and society.

India is a land where people of different religions and cultures live in harmony. The message of love and brotherhood is conveyed by all the religions and cultures of India. This harmony can be clearly seen in the celebration of different religions’ festivals.

The major religions of India are as follows-

1. Hinduism: - Hinduism is a religion with various gods and goddesses. It is also known as Sanatana Dharma. According to Hinduism, Brahma is the creator, Vishnu is
the preserver and Shiva is the destroyer of the world. It does not advocate the worship of one particular deity. 80% of the population follows it.

2. Buddhism

Buddhism is one of the major religions. This religion is based on the teachings of Lord Buddha. After originating in India, Buddhism spread throughout the Central Asia, Sri Lanka, Tibet, Southeast Asia and other countries.

3. Islam
Islam is the prominent religion of India. The followers of Islam are called Muslims. They believe that there is only one God, Allah. Islam forms approximately 12 per cent of India's population.
4. Sikhism
Sikhism is a monotheistic religion, which was founded in the Punjab by Guru Nanak Dev. The follower of Sikhism is called Sikh. It rejects idolatry, the caste system and ritualism and gives importance the equality between both genders and all religions. The Shri Guru Granth Sahib is a sacred book for Sikhism.
5. Jainism

Jainism is a very old religion from India. It was revived by a lineage of 24 spiritual conquerors called Tirthankaras. It teaches the way to achieve liberation. Jainism, which began in the sixth century BC, emphasizes complete non-violence and asceticism.

6. Christianity

Christianity is a monotheistic religion and world's biggest religion with about 2.1 billion followers worldwide. It based on the life and teachings of Jesus. Adherents of the Christianity are known as Christians.

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